Best Creatine Powders Reviewed and Tested

It’s the age of the gym rat-boomers. Being in shape and going to do plyos with your extremely attractive trainer is all the rage. Since it is such a fad to be fit and healthy (we are so glad it is!), those flocking to fitness are always on search for the next new way to “get fitter than you.”

best creatine powders

Performance enhancing supplements, such as creatine are at such a high demand and popularity. Why? Because athletes and gym-goers are craving one phenomenon, and they can’t ever be satisfied. Creatine supplement and powders fill in that gap and solve that craving that you might be looking for to get yourself to the next level of fitness.

First, let’s give a brief overview of what these creatine powders are and what types are available.

Big money in the fitness industry comes from creatine. It is one of the most accessible supplements: through powders, bars, tablets, drink mixes and tablets, and without a doctor’s prescription. Creatine also comes cheap, most of the powders on this list are extremely affordable.

The all-natural substance Creatine goes directly into the body, forming something called “creatine phosphate”. This phosphate then teams up with some other things in the body to make ATP (adenosine triphosphate). When it comes to making those muscles move and keep moving through energy, ATP is your best friend.

Creatine improves athletic performance through boosting strength, increasing LEAN muscle mass, and is a huge contributor towards the post-workout recovery.
Fun (but maybe extremely useful) fact, is that researchers are conducting many experiments to see if creatine is helpful in certain health conditions like heart-related issues (heart failure, heart attack), Huntington’s disease and some neuromuscular disorders. Also, some research has been done with lowering cholesterol. Creatine also has been proven to provide benefits as a therapeutic application, among other applications for non-athletic individuals.

Our Top 3 Picks

ON Creatine
  • ON Creatine
  • 5 out of 5
    Our rating
  • Micronized
  • Price: See Here
UN Creatine
  • UN Creatine
  • 4.6 out of 5
    Our rating
  • Powerhouse
  • Price: See Here
NF Creatine
  • NF Creatine
  • 4.2 out of 5
    Our rating
  • ATP Energizer
  • Price: See Here

 

There are so many different type of creatines available to use as a supplement in your workout.

One of the top and most popular types of creatine is Creatine Monohydrate. This seems to be the most pure product and is concidered the best type of creatine, which is shown through SKW creatine’s specific creation- Creapure.

Creatine Citrate is pure creatine combined with other products that make it best for absorption. This type needs usually double the amount of creatine monohydrate, and is double as expensive. A.K.A., not the best type out there.

Creatine Cocktails is—-did I just write cocktails?! Yes. Cocktails.– Unfortunately, however, this is a type of pre-workout supplement, so there is no alcohol INCLUDED, (though if you do want to add in a drop or two, that’s your prerogative. Anyways, the Creatine Cocktail is indeed a mix, not of fun fruity drinks, but of amino acids, nitric oxide and creatine. This is also known as “stacking”, putting lots of different supplements into your body at once.

Creatine Ethyl Ester (CEE) is the most absorbent creatine on the market. It is known to be 99% absorbent. It also proves one of the best types for minimization of bloating or stomach issues.

Creatine Kre-Alkalyn is formed by bonding to another molecule. This type stays in its true form up until it is absorbed into your muscle tissue.

Creatine Orate is the molecule “orotic acid” combined with pure creatine. This acid helps out that ATP energy being used to its fullest capacity.

Creatine Serum has been the topic of many speculations amongst users in the market. This product doesn’t need water, because it is creatine already dissolved in water. Instead of mixing into a drink, Creatine Serum needs just a drop under the tongue to work into your system.

Effervescent Creatine is a combination of pure creatine with sodium or sugar. The taste is usually much better (because of the sugar or salt added in) and the bubbly liquid is one of the best absorption products on the market.

There is Micronized Creatine, which is a type of creatine monohydrate that has had its molecules divided. The benefits of this procedure is that it makes absorption a lot easier and minimizes stomach and digestion discomfort.

Tri and Di Creatine Malate are named for the amount of monohydrate molecules attached to the creatine. Tri has three, Di has two. This makes it so there is a faster recovery and less fatigue while you are actually working out, and is great with absorbency.

10 Best Creatine Powders

 

1. Optimum Nutrition Micronized

1. Optimum Nutrition Micronized
Claimed as a Best Seller, Optimum Nutrition’s powders top our best creatine powders pre-workout list at NUMBER ONE.

Sold at just under ten dollars, this highly affordable creatine supplement supports muscle strength, power and size for high intensive exercises.
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Made from CreaPure, the most pure type of creatine, Optimum Nutrition has optimized this pre workout for the best hit in your system for your workout.

This type of product is also “micronized” like said in the brand name, which means that the particles in the formula are made smaller. When the particles are smaller, the powder mixes easier. “Affordable and efficient.”
Pros
  • Highly affordable
  • Supports muscle strength
  • For high intensive exercises
Cons
  • Pricey

2. Universal Nutrition

2. Universal Nutrition
Universal Nutrition has its history behind it as one of the best creatine brands, which means it takes our number two spot on our list.

This company has been helping you get it done in the gym since 1977! This is one of the few companies out there that not only market the products they sell, such as this Creatine Monohydrate, but they make it too.
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A powerhouse in recovery, this top rated creatine is stacked with protein to minimize soreness so that you can get back in the gym when you need to, rather than skip days because of a poor post-workout.

With the no flavor option, this can be mixed with anything to optimize your workouts.
Pros
  • Stacked with protein
  • Minimize soreness
  • Can be mixed with anything
Cons
  • No flavor

3. Now Foods Sports

3. Now Foods Sports
This ATP Energizer and dietary supplement is a great choice and a very good creatine to buy for those in the market looking for explosive energy on a short term level.

This supplement is useful for intense exercises that also have a short energy life. For instance, weight lifting, basketball, American football, etc.
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The results from Now Foods Powder can usually be found and obtained in a diet consisting of fish and meat, but this particular product is a vegetarian and vegan option.

Because of its recipe or contents, some may think it is doesn’t pack the punch you may need, but it’s actually quite the contrary. At a competitive value, Now Creatine Protein Monohydrate helps you look full, do more reps, all without a chalky taste and no bloating. This is why this product is high up on our best creatine powders list.
Pros
  • Energy on a short term level
  • No chalky taste
  • No bloating
Cons
  • Outsourced from China

4. Jarrow Formulas

4. Jarrow Formulas
Jarrow Formulas has blended a creatine monohydrate that truly boosts muscle power, increases strength gains and maximizes muscle mass. This specific creatine is gluten free and also vegan and vegetarian approved for those looking for a cleaner option.
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The purity in this mix, since it is made with CreaPure (which is the best type of creatine), helps reduce fatigue without the extra bloat that other powders usually bring on.

That's what places this product at number four on our list as best creatine powders.
Pros
  • Boosts muscle power
  • Increases strength gains
  • Maximizes muscle mass
Cons
  • Somewhat expensive

5. USN Pure Micronized

5. USN Pure Micronized
This creatine monohydrate is highly effective in its improvement for your muscle performance.

Made for high, intense workouts, and optimizing your physical performance, USN has created a pure crystallized creatine available at a very affordable price!
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Since it is made so “pure”, the micronized powder absorbs readily into your pre-workout.

USN’s products are all pretty well known for mixing and absorbing with little problems.

Their company has helpful and committed customer service, willing to explain their products to the finest detail.
Pros
  • Boosts performance
  • Absorbs rapidly
  • Optimizes physical performance
Cons
  • No flavor

6. Muscle Pharm

6. Muscle Pharm
Based on “real athletes and real science”, Muscle Pharm Creatine helps promote strength, size, power and athletic performance on a whole new level.

Since it is also highly connected through athletics, this creatine is banned substance tested and approved, which means that even if you are a collegiate or professional athlete, this creatine can be taken without a worry.

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A great tool in post-workout recovery, Muscle Pharm is a lead innovator in creating a perfect balance between power, strength and lean body mass.

It also has a great mixing quality, hardly any flavor, and even when using two scoops instead of one, dissolves nicely.
Pros
  • Promotes strenght
  • Ensures athletic performance
  • Quality ingredients
Cons
  • No flavor

7. Con-Cret HCl

7. Con-Cret HCl
This pineapple, exotic tasting creatine hits the number 7 mark on our list purely on ingenuity and creativity.

When else can you say that you have taken a creatine pre-workout that tasted like the islands. Con-Cret is also nothing like concrete! This brand is known widely for its solubility.
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It absorbs almost immediately when its poured into water, but disappears completely when shaken or stirred.

The Micro Dosing also doesn’t leave any room for bloating when or after it kicks in.
Pros
  • Absorbs immediately
  • Easily soluble
  • Quality product
Cons
  • May make you feel a little bloated

8. Country Life Iron-Tek

8. Country Life Iron-Tek
Country Life is an AVA certified Vegan product that is based strictly on clean performance powder.

This dietary supplement is also a kosher product and helps load more water into your body by hydrating your muscles.
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Since it is great biologically in dissolving into your own body before a workout, it is no surprise that it is also highly dissolvable in water before you take it by drink.

Country Life is micronized and is made specifically for quick absorption and dissolve.

That's what places this product at number eight on our list as best creatine supplements.
Pros
  • Highly dissolvable
  • Abosorbs quickly into your body
  • Hydrates your muscles
Cons
  • A bit pricey

9. ALLMAX Nutrition

9. ALLMAX Nutrition
Nicknamed the King of Creatine, this German hybrid is one of the top creatines on the market.

This particular product doesn’t leave you feeling bloated, gives off loads of energy for contractions all at a great price.
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Allmax has a pure and clean feeling that doesn't include the usual side effects that come with a pre-workout.

It also has almost no taste at all, so you can feel free to mix it with whatever you want to take that day-- juice, protein shakes, water or almond milk.

That's why this product is on our best creatine supplements list for 2016!
Pros
  • Does not bloat you
  • Energy booster
  • Quality ingredients
Cons
  • No flavor

10. Twinlab Fuel

10. Twinlab Fuel
Usually best when mixed with a shake or another preworkout. Because of it’s non-flavored substance, the Creatine Fuel Powder gives you the boost you need to lift those extra five kilos you have been aiming for.
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This Creatine powder is made to increase your peak performance, improve your lean body mass and up your peak and maximum power.

Creatine improves athletic performance through boosting strength, increasing LEAN muscle mass, and is a huge contributor towards the post-workout recovery.

That’s what places this product at number ten on our list as best creatine supplements.
Pros
  • Increases performance
  • Improves lean body mass
  • Improves athletic performance
Cons
  • None

Factors to consider when buying Creatine Powders

Still overwhelmed? On top of everything you have to make a decision about in your fitness life, which gym to choose, which membership, what workout plan, which trainer, what outfit(!!!??), let’s try and make your choice of creatine powder the least of your worries.
Here are a few tips and tricks to keep the fear of choosing the wrong supplement at bay.

  • Quality. Get the best bang for your buck. This might mean doing a little research on which company you’re buying from, but if they have a good reputation, then the quality of the product you’re using will definitely show through.
  • Ingredients. What is in the creatine that you are putting into your body? Not every option is made of pure and vegan ingredients, and you have to be aware of this.
  • Taste. Though it might not be that much of a drink to ingest, remember, you will be drinking this huge package of creatine for a long time until it runs out. Make sure you can stomach it and stomach the taste. This also goes hand in hand with absorbency.

FAQs

In this article we will be answering some of your frequently-asked questions (FAQs) to give you a better idea of what to expect with this special supplement.

Let’s begin!

What are the effects of taking creatine powder?

Although often used in sports, creatine powder also has surprisingly beneficial results for non-athletes. In any case, here are just a few good reasons as to why creatine powder is helpful for the body:

1. Gives energy and stamina. The primary reason as to why many athletes and health-conscious individuals take creatine powder is because of the energy and endurance boost it provides to the body. Especially if you are feeling tired earlier than expected, taking this supplement can work to make you go harder for just a bit longer. Now, you do not have to worry about burning out anytime soon!
2. Develops muscle mass. If you are especially considering bulking up, then creatine powder can also help with that. This point goes hand-in-hand with the previous reason of giving you energy and endurance to keep going farther in your workout: by having more energy and stamina, you can perform more reps and sets than usual, which helps to increase muscle growth sooner than later.
3. Helps with psychological health. Believe it or not, creatine powder might not just have physiological benefits to your body, but also psychologically. Some studies have looked into the possibility of creatine powder helping with mental health issues like depression, as well as improving activity in the brain, and while there still needs to be work done to confirm these hypotheses, it looks like creatine powder is a powerful tool for the body and mind.
4. Produces quality workouts. Simple as it sounds, it is true that taking creatine powder can help you max out on your workouts each time you hit the gym. Since it gives you energy and power to go forward, you feel more motivated to hit the weight racks or treadmill with what you got, thereby making your workout session worth the sweat and effort in the long run.
5. Helps with workout recovery. Even if you are maxing out during each workout, creatine powder can have the potential to make your post-workout recovery an easier transition than otherwise. As a result, your muscles can repair as soon as you finish, thus avoiding soreness and giving you the drive to hit hard during your next exercise session.

How does creatine powder work?

In order to understand just how creatine powder works its magic on the body, it is necessary to know a little bit of chemistry and biology to get started:

Upon ingesting the supplement, the creatine powder works to make creatine phosphate. Later, it breaks down to produce adenosine triphosphate, or ATP for short. What ATP does is create energy (think the “electricity” in the powerhouse of the body) to charge you up to perform well during physical activity, as well as give you the drive to keep going when you start to lose steam.

Creatine powder is useful in both aerobic and anaerobic exercises, which makes it incredibly versatile to use for just about any activity you choose to participate in. For instance, it gives plenty of sustained energy to keep you running those long, hard miles while also being capable of offering you that rapid burst of energy when sprinting that final 100 meters in swimming. In essence, it enhances your body’s physical capabilities as means of allowing yourself to achieve your full potential.

How do I go about taking the supplement?

At first, you might be a bit worried about just how to go about taking creatine powder. Of course, there are also capsule forms of the supplement, but if you are especially leaning towards the powder version, then here is a breakdown of what to do to ensure that you are taking it safely and effectively:

1. Begin with small doses. Of course, it is a no-brainer, but you might be surprised that some people start out taking too much creatine powder, especially as a beginner. As a result, they might end up with problems like cramps, upset stomachs, and other unpleasant symptoms.
Essentially, you really do not know just how your body will react, so that said, it is best to start small (no more than five to ten grams per workout), and then go from there.
2. Choose which liquid to mix it with. Considering it is in powder form, there are many liquids which you can choose from. Generally speaking, it is a good idea to find a drink which is pleasurable to drink, as well as mask any possible taste from the creatine powder itself.
Generally speaking, fruit juices are a great source to start with: it has been found that the natural sugars in the fruit themselves provide a spike in energy levels, which augments that in creatine. Other drinks like protein shakes give you that boost in both strength and stamina, which can be beneficial for your workout sessions.
3. Be consistent. If you are looking for progress in your workout regime, then of course taking creatine powder on a regular basis is necessary. By doing so, you can ensure a natural body build-up and gains in the near future.

Decision Time

Factor in everything that you can. Though this may not be the biggest decision in your life, it still can make such a monumental difference between hitting your goals and falling just short. Sometimes this may take a bit of trial and error, but ultimately it IS possible to find your best creatine powder!