Best Nootropics For Sleep: Our Complete list

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Do you want to improve your sleep dramatically, but you don’t know how? Well, nootropics for sleep can help you out. But which are the most effective?

best nootropics for sleep

Table of Contents

Why Is Quality Sleep Important?

We live in a time when 1/3 of people in the US are sleep deprived. [1And this number does not even include people who have sleep-related issues (such as insomnia, for example).

One third might not sound so terrible at first, but if you know how important sleep is, this number should worry you.

Is there is anything we can do ourselves? Absolutely, we can start using sleep nootropics. Before we look at the best supplements for improving sleep, let’s understand why is sleep so important. 

1. We Form Memories During Sleep 

During a deep-sleep stage, our brains form memories. All the brain inputs during the day are stored and consolidated during the night. [2]

If your sleep sucks (or if you don’t sleep at all), no real memory consolidation can happen.

Therefore, it often happens that we walk around like zombies during the day. Our brain is not working, we can’t remember anything, and we are just in a bad mood.

The more significant issue is if we continuously lack sleep, synapses stop restoring themselves, and learning is no longer happening.

2. Great Sleep Increases Focus

Sleep is crucial for healthy brain functioning. If you sleep well, this influences your cognition, focus, and overall productivity. [3]

Many studies prove the amazing benefits of sleep. Good sleep was shown to improve not only memory but also problem-solving skills in children and adults. [4]

3. People Who Sleep More Eat Less

Another interesting fact about sleep is that people who sleep less usually weight more. [5] Lack of sleep is directly related to obesity.

What’s also interesting is that people who sleep less tend to have a bigger appetite. [6] How is that possible? 

Well, it somehow disrupts the hormones that regulate appetite. People who weight more usually feel less productive and have less energy. That’s why sleep is essential.

But there are many more benefits of long and high-quality sleep. 

For example, better sleep decreases the risk of type 2 diabetes, heart disease, and stroke. High-quality sleep can improve immunity and positively influence your emotions and reduce depression. 

So, achieving a great sleep is crucial for optimal brain and body performance. To achieve optimal sleep, nootropics can help us out.

What Are The Four Stages of Sleep?

There are four stages of sleep. [7] They are categorized into two – rapid eye movement (REM) and non-rapid eye movement (non-REM). We cycle through each stage, with deeper REM periods when we wake-up in the morning. 80% of our sleep is non-REM stages. 20% is REM sleep. [8]

Here’s a short explanation of each stage:

Stage One

During this non-REM stage, which is often short, our heartbeat, eye movement, and breathing start to slow down. Our muscles also relax. Sleep onset refers to our transition from being awake into sleep. Simply put, this is when we’re falling asleep. 

Stage Two

Also considered as non-REM sleep, stage 2 is when you enter light sleep. Our body temperature drops, and our breathing and heartbeat further slow down. Our eyes also stop moving.

Stage Three

Stage three is also a non-REM sleep. Occurring longer than other phases, this is when we re-energize. Waking up during stage three is difficult.

Rapid Eye Movement (REM)

The rapid eye movement (REM) is the deepest stage. However, rem sleep is also when we experience vivid dreams because of the mixed frequency brainwave activity that occurs.

Internal Biological Mechanisms That Affect Sleep

Our bodies have two internal biological mechanisms that harmoniously work together for better natural sleep.

Circadian Rhythms

Circadian rhythms directly affect our wakefulness. It can influence our body temperature, metabolism, and even the release of certain hormones. However, circadian rhythms can synchronize with external factors like light and temperature.

Sleep-wake homeostasis

Sleep-wake homeostasis is your natural sleep tracker. It reminds us that we need to fall asleep. Every hour that you are awake, the drive to sleep increases. If you’ve been sleep deprived for days, the homeostatic sleep drive will help you recuperate and get enough sleep.

What Is Sleep Deprivation?

Simply put, it is when we don’t get enough sleep. According to the Center for Disease Control (CDC), if you only get 7 hours of sleep per night, you are sleep deprived. [9

About 35% of adults are not getting enough sleep. In some cases, sleep onset insomnia. If you can’t get natural sleep at night, you can try nootropic supplements for deep sleep.

What Causes Sleep Deprivation?

There are many factors why we don’t get enough sleep. One reason is using gadgets before we sleep. These electronic devices can inhibit the production of melatonin, a natural hormone that the brain produces to put you into a state of sleepiness. [4]

In some cases, sleep onset insomnia, which is the difficulty of initiating sleep, can lead to shorter sleeping time. Taking over-the-counter sleep aids like melatonin may help with sleep-onset insomnia or challenges in falling asleep. You can consider other natural sleep supplement or nootropics for sleep to get the best sleep.

Other causes of sleep problems:

  • Sleep disorder
  • Stress and anxiety
  • Old age
  • Depression
  • Chronic pain

What Are the Negative Effects of Sleep Deprivation?

From drowsiness to irritability, not enough sleep can affect our mental, emotional, and physical well-being.

If your sleep duration is less than 7 hours per day, taking sleep supplement like nootropics for sleep may help with sleep. You can also try sleep aids. Sleep problems can result to: 

  • High blood pressure
  • Compromised immune system
  • Weight gain
  • Anxiety and depression
  • Reduced attention span
  • Lack of energy
  • Mood swings
  • Impairs judgment
  • Low sex drive
  • Forgetfulness
  • Ages your skin
Now let’s check how we can improve our sleep quality with nootropics. 

Best Nootropics For Sleep

Which are the best sleep nootropics on the market? Before we share the best nootropics for sleep with you, you have to keep in mind that:

  1. Sleep nootropics or nootropics for sleep are not equal to sleep pills
  2. While sleep pills make you fall asleep faster (and this usually comes with many side effects), nootropics for sleep can make sure you can relax and achieve a higher-quality sleep in a natural way

nootropics for sleep

Get To Sleep Quicker

1. Bacopa Monnieri

Bacopa Monnieri is an adaptogenic herb that can improve cognition and memory formation. Also, Bacopa can help you relax and fall asleep faster. [10] You can take Bacopa extract before bed if you want to relax and fall asleep more quickly. 

The recommended daily dosage is 300 mg per day. 


Gaba is a neurotransmitter that is crucial for relaxation. The issue with GABA is that as a supplement, it doesn’t cross the blood-brain barrier. Therefore, it’s often taken with L-Citrulline, which can help GABA access our brain. [11]

There is a lack of studies on how supplementing GABA can improve our sleep. However, based on my research and experience with GABA supplements, it has been proven very effective. 

The recommended daily dosage is currently unknown.

3. Lavender

Lavender is a trendy plant that is believed to be a great sleep quality enhancer. Studies show that smelling lavender oil can improve the quality of your sleep. [12]

Another study shows that people who were given lavender supplements had a 14-24% increase in sleep quality in 10-weeks only. While smelling lavender oil seems useful, and without side effects, this is not true for supplementing lavender.

There is a lack of data that would prove the long-term safety of doing it. Still, short-term use is possible. 

The recommended daily dosage is 80 – 160 mg per day.

4. L-Tryptophan 

L-Tryptophan is an amino acid that converts in the brain into 5-HTP, which turns into serotonin. Serotonin is a neurotransmitter essential for sleep quality. 

This amino acid can also optimize the pineal gland’s production of melatonin. This is why supplementing L-Tryptophan might be beneficial for sleep. 

The recommended daily dosage is up to 500 mg. 

5. Magnesium

Magnesium is a popular mineral that plays many vital roles in our body. It helps the body maintain healthy levels of GABA, which is a neurotransmitter that promotes sleep. [13]

Besides, it regulates our internal “bio clock” and also melatonin. This nootropics for sleep can also improve sleep quality. The best type of magnesium for sleep is magnesium citrate. 

Last but not least, magnesium can help you fall asleep faster and reach deeper phases of sleep.

The recommended daily dosage is 200 to 400 mg.

6. Melatonin

Melatonin is the crucial hormone naturally produced by the body that is essential for sleep. It is also one of the most popular and effective sleep supplements on the market. [14]

One of the primary roles of melatonin is to tell your brain when it is time to fall asleep. Melatonin naturally increases in the evening (when it is getting dark), and decreases in the morning.

If you suffer from sleep-related issues, then supplementing melatonin might help you improve your sleep.

The recommended daily dosage is 0,5 mg to 5 mg per day. 

7. Montmorency Tart Cherry

This nootropics for sleep is one of the richest natural sources of melatonin. This makes the Montmorency Tart Cherry a popular sleep supplement. 

The primary role of tart cherry is the production of melatonin, which is crucial for sleep. [15]

But that’s not all, supplementing Montmorency tart chary supplies antioxidants to our body, which promotes muscle and joint support. This is crucial for high sleep quality and regeneration. 

Recommended daily dosage has not been established, but it seems very effective at a dosage of up to 400 mg

8. Valerian

Another nootropics for sleep is valerian. It is a herb that grows in Europe and Asia. It is often used for treating anxiety and depression. However, Valerian can also be very useful for improving your sleep. [16]

Actually, it’s one of the most popular sleep supplements in the world. 

Some studies report supplementing Valerian (300 – 900 mg before sleeping) improves sleep. Even if supplementing Valerian does not increase the quality of sleep, it still works as a relaxing agent. 

The recommended daily dosage is 450 mg before sleep.

Achieve Better Quality Sleep

Do you want to achieve better quality sleep? There are a few nootropics that can help us with that.


1. Aniracetam

Aniracetam works primarily by targeting brain AMPA receptors and interacting with serotonin, dopamine, and choline. It has a significant soothing effect on anxiety and stress.

Aniracetam is best for spurring creativity, holistic thinking, and reducing stress. 

The recommended daily dosage is 400 – 1500 mg per day.


DMAE is a compound that might enhance memory and improve brain function. Many people also report decreased depression and improved sleep when supplementing DMAE. [17]

The recommended daily dosage has not been established yet. 

3. Huperzine-A

Huperzine A is a plant extract with cholinergic properties. It is extracted from the Chinese club moss and then purified to a point where many consider it a drug and not a dietary supplement. [18]

Recent research shows that acetylcholinesterase inhibitors (like Huperzine-A) may enhance REM sleep. 

The recommended daily dosage is 50 to 200 mcg daily.

4. L-Theanine

L-Theanine is an amino acid that can be found in the Camellia sinensis leaves (commonly known as tea leaves). It’s known to boost neurotransmitters. [19]

Besides, studies show that supplementing with this amino acid can also improve our sleep.

One study in boys with ADHD showed a significant improvement in sleep efficiency when they were given two doses of 200 mg of L-Theanine per day. 

Another study shows that 200 mg of L-Theanine can improve sleep quality in healthy people.

The recommended daily dosage is 100 – 200 mg per day.

5. Picamilon

Picamilon is a mix of Vitamin B3 (commonly known as niacin) and GABA. While there is a lack of studies, many people report improved sleep, feeling more relaxed, and experiencing more vivid dreams when supplementing Picamilon.

The recommended daily dosage has not been established yet.

Best Nootropic Sleep Stack 

While taking individual sleep supplements is useful, we prefer and suggest something even more effective, more convenient, and cheaper.

We’re talking about nootropic sleep stack – many sleep nootropics combined in one product.

The question is: Which is the best nootropic sleep stack on the market? 

Performance Lab Sleep

Performance Lab Sleep is a natural, restful sleep promoter that was developed to improve our sleep quality.

Performance Lab Sleep

Not only that, but Performance Lab Sleep can also:

  1. Make us more relaxed in the afternoon
  2. Ensures a higher-quality sleep
  3. Make us feel more energized in the morning

Performance Lab Sleep has been our favorite sleep nootropic stack for many years. It’s not the only supplement on the market, but it’s very, very effective, it’s 100% natural, it contains high-quality ingredients, and it sure works well.


Your Inception recommends using sleep nootropics. Sleep is much more important than most people believe. It sets the foundation for a productive day. If your sleep sucks, your day will suck as well, and it is not much you can do about it. Sure, taking a power nap works now and then, but this is not a long-term solution.

As you probably know, we are big fans of taking supplements for improving sleep. If you want to improve the quality of your sleep, if you are going to sleep shorter and better, and if you’re going to wake up energized, sleep nootropics can help you out.

To get the most out of your sleep, we recommend taking Performance Lab Sleep. Currently, this is by far the sleep nootropic stack available on the market.

Frequently Asked Questions About Sleep

Can I take nootropics at night?

Yes, you can take sleep nootropics at night to improve your sleep. However, not all nootropics are recommended to be taken at night.

What is a sleep stack?

Sleep stack is an all-natural complex of sleep nootropics that can help to improve your sleep quality. You can make your nootropic stack or buy a premade one from supplement companies.

Does melatonin improve your REM sleep?

Studies show that melatonin may improve your REM, may improve your sleep quality and even reduce daytime sleepiness. Melatonin works to promote sleep by helping to regulate sleep-wake cycles.

Which are the best nootropic for sleep deprivation?

Many nootropics can help in case of lack of sleep. Check our list above to find the most effective ones.

Grega Gostincar

Grega Gostincar

Grega Gostincar, MSc, is the founder of Your Inception. He has been researching, testing, and experimenting with nootropics since 2015. Greg, a certified expert in nutrition and brain biohacking from Emory University, is one of the most recognized researchers in the field of nootropics.
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