Table of Contents
With so many different hangover pills and tablets on the market today, finding the most effective, fast-acting, and affordable supplement to support your rough mornings is not easy.
UPDATE: We’ve updated this guide with the latest information and supplements for 2020. We currently rate AfterDrink as the best hangover pill on the market at the moment. We’ll be reviewing and updating this guide with the latest information throughout 2020.
Head to your nearest pharmacy, drugstore, or just hop on Amazon and you’ll see so many different options.
There’s so much choice that it’s actually pretty difficult to pick out the best hangover product for you.
So, how do you figure out which hangover pills actually work and make sure you don’t waste your money on ineffective hype products?
If you’re looking to find the best product on the market right now, you’ve landed on the right page.
In this article, we’re going to specifically focus on hangover pills. In other words, a supplement that’s designed to help you metabolize alcohol more efficiently by providing your liver with the raw materials it requires to achieve this.
We’ve paid particular attention to the ingredient formulas, the dosages, customer reviews, and have compiled our list of the five best pills on the market right now.
Here’s a quick peek of our top pick if you don’t want to read the full guide.
|★★★★★||• Most Effective • Proven Ingredients • Good Reviews||Visit website|
|★★★★☆||• Uses L-Theanine • Liver Support • Good Reviews||Visit website|
|★★★★☆||• Uses Milk Thistle • Solid Ingredients • Lower Price||Visit website|
|★★★☆☆||• Uses Ginger • Strong Brand • Good Reviews||Visit website|
|★★★☆☆||• Many Ingredients • Uses Milk Thistle • Strong Brand||Visit website|
Best 5 hangover pills
We found AfterDrink to be the best product we tried. It has a comprehensive list of all the ingredients required to combat hangovers.
All of the ingredients are dosed properly and AfterDrink does not use “proprietary blends“. You’ll often come across proprietary blends if you take a close look at product ingredients labels. In essence, they are cheaper to manufacture and you won’t know the exact doses of each ingredient.
Aside from this, AfterDrink contains 23 ingredients including DHM, Milk thistle, prickly pear, and NAC to mention a few. We go through the most important ingredients to look out for in hangover pills later in this article, so scroll down if you want to find out more.
On top of this, AfterDrink uses vegan-friendly capsules instead of gelatine and does not include any medicines or stimulants.
Finally, they manufacture their product in the USA, in a GMP (good manufacturing practice) certified facility.
How to use it
The manufacturers advise taking 3 capsules before you start drinking and another 3 straight after your last drink. As you go through this article, you’ll notice that most of the hangover pills mentioned will have a very similar dosing regimen.
The reason being, the ingredients need to work while alcohol is still in your system, and as soon as the by-products of alcohol metabolism start to cause damage.
By the time you’ve woken up in the morning with a bad hangover, the damage has been done!
A single bottle of AfterDrink costs $34.97 which is enough for 8 drinking sessions. That means each 6 capsule dose costs $4.37. In terms of pricing, AfterDrink is at the premium end of the market.
You can get big discounts if you opt for their bigger package by getting one bottle free if you buy 3 bottles.
Shipping is free in the US on all orders. International shipping is free if you opt for the 3 bottle offer.
I bought these before going on a girls holiday, didn’t have any real faith in them working but how wrong was I, I took them after the first night of heavy drinking, couldn’t believe how great they worked, all my friends was really jealous, needless to say they all ordered some, would definitely recommend, wouldn’t go without now
Eddie Huai is the founder of Flyby and launched the product after testing hangover products in South Korea that worked. He decided to bring the formula over and launch it in the US. Since then, Flyby has expanded into rehydration solutions as well as other health supplements.
They’ve based their formulation on a solid foundation of ingredients and include everything you need in a hangover pill. The only downside is that Flyby uses a proprietary blend. Therefore, we don’t know how exactly how much of each key ingredient is included.
How to use it
The dosing regimen is the same as AfterDrink. 3 capsules before bed and 3 after your last drink.
A 90 capsule bottle costs $35.99. That works out to around $2.40 per drinking session. So Flyby is on the cheaper end and good value for money.
“Magic unicorn pills”
I was a skeptic when buying these. I suffer from horrible hangovers that have left me bed ridden for the next day. Headache, vomiting, dehydration, you name it and I suffer. I bought these for a girls weekend trip to New York and I knew we were going to be waking up drinking bloody marys and continuing the whole day with a variety of drinks until bed. No joke, we drank for 12 hours straight. I took 2 in the morning before we started and chugged another 2 with water before bed. I woke up feeling good. No headaches, no nausea. I felt a little tired but that was probably due to lack of quality sleep.
DETOXX by LESlabs is one of the original hangover pills to ever come on the market. As a result, they have a strong customer base and following.
B-vitamins, Milk thistle, NAC, and Prickly pear are the key ingredients in DETOXX. They don’t include ingredients such as DHM, ginger, and ginseng.
How to use it
Once again, you’ll see a recurring theme with hangover pills and a dosing regimen. 3 capsules before drinking and 3 straight after.
DETOXX is one of the cheapest hangover pills on the market. Each bottle contains 60 capsules which is enough for 10 nights out which costs $19.99. That works out as just under $2 per serving
The trade-off in price is that DETOXX omits a few ingredients from their formulation and is probably the reason for the cheaper price point. Nevertheless, it’s a great entry-level product if you’re on a tight budget.
“This stuff just works”
I have been using this long before the label change and swear by it. Prior to discovering this product that my friends and I refer to as “Science,” I would have debilitating hangovers even after a handful of drinks. I have tried most of the other hangover cures, but this one has worked the best for me. I do not take it before drinking, just after drinking with a lot of water. Everyone who I have shared this with have felt that it works very well.
4) Cheers Hangover Pill
Cheers used to be called Thrive+. They have been around for years and managed to secure a multi-million dollar investment deal which propelled this brand as one of the market leaders.
Despite the big investment, Cheers have stuck to their roots and kept their original formula. And it’s a solid one at that.
The product is built around DHM as the key ingredient and contains the highest amount out of any hangover pill mentioned in this article at 1200mg!
On top of this, they are one of the only products on the market alongside AfterDrink that does not use a proprietary blend.
How to use it
The manufactures recommend taking 2-4 capsules straight after your last drink. So, it’s a little different from the other hangover pills mentioned in this article.
Cheers costs $35 for 36 capsules. If you take 4 capsules after drinking, that will mean you’ll get 9 sessions from a full bottle. In which case each night out will cost $4.33.
“Great product to help stop hangovers!”
Great product! I recently tried them after attending a brew festival. I followed some of the suggestions to hyrdrate during the day, take at least 3 pills right after my last drink and it worked great. Felt great the next day! I also recommended these to friends and they love them as well!
Drinkwel is probably one of the first hangover pills to ever come on the market. As a result, they have a strong following with lots of loyal customers.
Drinkwel is a little different from the other supplements on the market. That’s because they include lots of ingredients at smaller doses. For this reason, it’s mainly seen as a liver health supplement.
One of the key ingredients is Reishi mushroom which is gaining a lot of interest because of its potential anti-inflammatory properties. With that said, it’s benefits are as yet unproven.
How to use it
Drinkwel is designed to be taken as a daily supplement and the manufacturers recommend taking 3 pills a day. When drinking, they advise taking an extra 3.
A 90 capsule bottle costs $39.99. If we assume you need to take 6 pills when drinking in total, that would mean one bottle covers 15 drinking sessions. Therefore each 6 pill serving would cost $2.67
I’ve tried different things to help prevent hangovers and can honestly say Drinkwel is the only product that makes a difference! I feel noticably better taking this when I have a few drinks. Highly recommend.
Now that we’ve gone through our list of the best hangover pills on the market right now, we’ll cover exactly how these products work and how you can make the most of them. So read on for an in-depth analysis…
What are the causes of a hangover?
To understand how hangover pills work, it’s worth taking a look at exactly why hangovers occur in the first place.
The cause of a hangover is still under debate. There are several different theories and scientists, to this day, don’t know what the exact cause is. With that said, there are a few generally accepted damaging effects of alcohol which they all agree on.
So, let’s cover the main reasons why you wake up feeling rough after a night of drinking…
Alcohol is a diuretic which means it makes your kidneys produce more urine. It does this by blocking a hormone called vasopressin from being released in your brain (pituitary gland).
As a result, you flush out more water which can cause dehydration.
2) Inflammation caused by Acetaldehyde
Alcohol is broken down by your liver into Acetaldehyde, which is then further broken down to acetic acid. Acetaldehyde is a toxic substance that reacts with your cells causing inflammation.(1)
During periods of over-indulgence, acetaldehyde levels start to rise which wreaks havoc on your insides.
Congeners are compounds in alcoholic drinks that give them their taste and aroma. Darker colored drinks contain more congeners such as red wine, whiskey, and rum.
Unfortunately, congeners make hangovers a lot more severe. That’s because they, like acetaldehyde, react with your cells causing inflammation.(2)
4) Sleep disruption
Although it’s much easier to fall asleep after drinking alcohol, the actual sleep quality is reduced. That’s because alcohol blocks your brain from reaching the deep stages of sleep (aka the REM stage of sleep). For this reason, sleep is light and easily disturbed after drinking.
In summary, there is no single definitive cause of a hangover. Rather, it’s caused by a combination of damaging factors that come together and give you the typical hangover symptoms we are all too familiar with.
So, despite the common belief that dehydration is the main cause of a hangover and drinking water is enough to prevent one from happening, that’s not entirely correct.
So, now that we’ve got the science out the way, let’s take a closer look at how hangover pills work.
How do hangover pills work?
Hangover pills are designed to provide your liver with natural antioxidants to support your liver during periods of over-indulgence.
The best hangover pills are made from all-natural ingredients that work together to give your liver the best chance of coping with the toxic by-products of alcohol metabolism.
But before we go further…
It’s important to mention that there is no such thing as a magic ‘hangover cure’.
The hangover pills mentioned in this article are designed to naturally support your body when drinking alcohol.
Earlier we mentioned several different causes of a hangover which include dehydration, sleep disturbance, and inflammation. Therefore, all the standard precautions such as drinking enough water and making sure that you get enough sleep are equally important.
If you’re planning on getting wasted and wake up the next morning with no hangover, you’ll be disappointed.
What are the best hangover pill ingredients?
It’s worth knowing a bit more about the best ingredients to look for in a hangover pill so you can assess which product is the best value for money.
We’ve picked out some of the best hangover pill ingredients to look for below:
Also known as DHM and Ampelopsin, this is one of the most popular hangover pill ingredients out there. Recent research has shown that it could increase the rate at which your liver breaks down alcohol.(3)
Ginger is known for its ability to ease nausea symptoms and improve digestion. Therefore it’s always good to see this included in a hangover pill.
N-Acetyl Cysteine (NAC)
NAC is an amino acid that boosts Glutathione levels. And glutathione is known as your body’s “master antioxidant”.
B-vitamins are cofactors used by your liver to produce and regenerate the enzymes which break down alcohol.
You’ll find milk thistle in pretty much any liver health supplement for good reason. It’s known for its antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties.
Prickly pear is the fruit of a cactus plant that is high in polyphenols. Polyphenols are known to be powerful antioxidants.
The active ingredients in ginseng are called ginsenosides. Studies have shown they potentially have anti-inflammatory properties. It’s also been tested in a small study on hangovers and shown to reduce symptom severity.(4)
Black pepper extract (Piperine)
We always like to see the inclusion of black pepper extract because it works as a bioavailability enhancer. This means that it increases the absorption of the other ingredients in your supplement and therefore ensures you get the most out of it.
Ingredients to avoid
Stimulants like caffeine can make you feel worse as they increase your heart rate and make you feel more on edge. In addition, caffeine is also a diuretic which can lead to further dehydration.
It’s hard to find supplements without a proprietary blend nowadays. If you take a closer look at the ingredients label in your supplement, you may see that several ingredients come under a mysterious “blend”.
The problem with them is that you aren’t able to see the exact doses of each ingredient in the blend. Depending on how the batch is made, you may get very small doses of key ingredients.
Proprietary blends are often used by manufacturers as they are much cheaper to produce and increase margins. Therefore, we always like to go for brands that don’t use them.
Artificial fillers /coloring
I think you’ll agree with the reason for not wanting artificial filler and coloring is self-explanatory.
Who should use hangover pills?
Let’s be honest, we all know that hangovers get worse with age. The golden age that most of us start to feel hangovers badly is said to be in our 30’s. Obviously, this is an arbitrary number, and everyone experiences hangovers differently.
Nevertheless, at a certain stage, we all notice the effects of even small amounts of alcohol. How many times have you woken up after having a few drinks with dinner thinking, I only had a couple of drinks last night, why do I feel hungover!?
If this sounds like you, then this is exactly the time when you may want to consider investing in hangover pills. The products mentioned in this article may be enough to help you wake up feeling fresher than usual.
On the other hand, if you’re planning to drink all night, taking shots of tequila after every round, hangover pills are unlikely to help much.
How to make the most of hangover prevention pills
Hangover pills should be seen as a recovery aid. To get the best out of them, you need to make sure that you do everything in your power to mitigate all the damaging effects of alcohol.
Aside from drinking less – which should always be the first thing to do, there are several other tips to consider:
1) Eat before drinking alcohol
Drinking on an empty stomach should be avoided at all costs. The reason being, alcohol is absorbed much faster when there is no food in your stomach. As a result, your blood alcohol concentrations rise rapidly which wreaks havoc on your insides.
Therefore, if you’re planning a big night out, having a proper dinner is a must. You may have heard that drinking milk “lines the stomach” and is the best thing to have before drinking alcohol, but it’s not exactly true. Studies have shown that eating anything helps.(5)
2) Drink a glass of water between every drink
We mentioned earlier that dehydration is one of the main causes of a hangover. As long as alcohol is flowing through your bloodstream, your kidneys will continue to flush out too much water. That’s why you need to keep up with your water loss by replenishing it regularly.
Most people just drink a big glass before bed, but what about the dehydration in the hours prior?
To make the most of your hangover pills, you should also consider drinking a glass of water after every alcoholic beverage. Not only does this help rehydrate you steadily, but also delays the time between drinks which allows your liver time to process alcohol.
3) Stick to lighter colors
Darker colored drinks contain higher concentrations of congeners. These are by-products produced during the production of alcohol and darker colored drinks contain much more than others. For example, red wine, whiskey, and rum contain much higher concentrations of congeners than vodka and gin.
Congeners are responsible for the taste and aroma of certain drinks like red wine and whiskey. However, as we mentioned earlier, they also fuel inflammation.
So, if you want to make the most of your hangover pills, consider sticking to lighter colored drinks to give your body the best chance of waking up with a less severe hangover.
What about other hangover prevention products?
Nowadays, you’ll find all different types of hangover products on the market. These range from IV drips, patches, and drinks to mention a few.
From our experience, the IV solutions that have become popular in recent years do work – but frankly, they are too expensive to be anything more than a novelty at the moment.
In our opinion, ‘Hangover patches’ aren’t quite as good as hangover pills because they can only deliver small amounts of the essential vitamins. Also, if you’ve got sensitive skin, you may end up with red and itchy patches.
Hangover drinks on the other hand are very similar to hangover pills, but some people prefer to take tablets rather than consume another drink. Ultimately, it all comes down to personal preference.
Are there any side effects?
The products mentioned in this article are all derived from natural sources. That means no medicines or stimulants are used in these products and everything is plant-based.
That means the side effect profile is low, but not zero. As always, with anything you consume, there is always a risk it may trigger an allergic reaction or interact with medicines you may be taking.
Although not mentioned in this article, there are many hangover prevention products that do contain medicines and stimulants (for example Blowfish). And the risk of side effects may be higher with these products.
Therefore, it’s always important to check the ingredients label carefully to check if there’s anything that could cause you problems. In addition, speaking to your doctor before taking a herbal supplement if you’ve got any medical conditions or are taking medication is essential.
Anything else to consider?
When it comes to hangovers, prevention is key. Trying to prevent or cure a hangover with hangover pills is not the best approach.
Hangovers are a sign from your body that you’ve been drinking too much alcohol for it to deal with. That’s why drinking less should always be your first port of call.
The hangover pills mentioned above are only designed to support normal liver function and are not magic hangover cures.
The only way to guarantee waking up without a hangover is to not drink in the first place.
Conclusion – Our Final Thoughts
That brings us to the end of our look into the best hangover pills on the market right now.
AfterDrink is currently our top-rated product because it’s properly dosed, includes all the best ingredients, and is good value for money.
We will be constantly updating this list of hangover pills, and if you know of, or are a manufacturer of your own hangover pills, then do get in touch with us and we’ll arrange to try them out and add them to the rankings above.