Modafinl vs. Adderall

Modafinil vs Adderall: Cognitive Enhancer Showdown

Let’s face it: there are only 24 hours in a day and even if you’ve got nerves of steel, a work drive of an Elon Musk, and the willpower of a Bruce Lee, your mental stamina is bound to deplete at some point. That’s where smart drugs come in: magical pills that allow you to stay wide awake and wildly productive even when your energy and focus would normally start to drop. Cognitive enhancers such as Modafinil and Adderall can take your academic or work performance to the top in the blink of an eye.


Unfortunately, cognitive pick-me-ups don’t always come free of unpleasant side-effects, which is a good reason why you should pick your productivity pills with due care if you want to stay ahead of the competition after the stunning pill effects wear off. So, first check out our full guide to smart pills, what can they do for you and which one is best suited to your objectives and long-term wellbeing.


Brief History of Nootropics: The Stuff High-Flier Dreams are Made of

The first limitless drug (a.k.a. nootropic) was invented in the 1960s as a motion sickness relief and the first studies of a drug considered a memory enhancer, piracetam, were carried out in 1971.


With the advent of piracetam as a tried and tested cognitive enhancer, the term nootropic was coined by Romanian doctor Corneliu Giurgea who merged two Greek words, nous (meaning the mind) and trepein (meaning to bend). The term came in as rather befitting: the pick-me-ups which promise sharp focus and surplus energy did in fact act as a sort of a mind bender, pushing cognitive performance limits left and right.


Since these shy beginnings, the popularity of nootropics have taken off and numerous studies concerning their effects have been carried out until now. In the past few years, two smart pills won a special spot in the hearts of many busy entrepreneurs and high-flying students: known as the ultimate quick fix for folks who won’t settle for average results in work or studies, Modafinil and Adderall quickly made it to the mainstream, albeit their benefits and negative side effects differ in a few aspects.


So, how do smart drugs work and which benefits can you hope to reap by adding them to your productivity arsenal?


The Gains behind Nootropics: Advantages of Using Smart Drugs

Over the past few decades, various studies have been carried out which shown that nootropics can significantly improve cognitive performance, work drive, and overall emotional wellbeing. By targeting the parts of the brain which regulate focus, wakefulness, and impulse control, smart drugs can even provide relief in certain psychological conditions such as anxiety, depression, narcolepsy, and ADHD. In some cases, use of certain nootropics can alleviate the symptoms of multiple sclerosis, Alzheimer’s disease, brain fog, age-related memory loss, and a host of other psychological disorders which would otherwise entail long-term cognitive impairment.


By enhancing the communication between neurons and increasing blood flow to key parts of the brain, smart drugs promote alertness, razor-sharp concentration, and a steady flow of ideas, which makes them perfect for students and anyone looking to achieve peak performance. Still, you should only use limitless pills with due care and only when necessary because their side effects can be noticeable depending on which one you take.


Apart from heightening focus and alertness, improving cognition, productivity, and flow, and boosting mid-term energy levels, many smart drugs such as Modafinil and Adderall can cause sleep issues, appetite dips, nausea, tremor, heart rate issues, headaches, mood swings, anxiety, and even dependency.


Modafinl vs. Adderall


Modafinil: Smooth, Sweet Focus and Productivity Peaks

A drug targeting patients diagnosed with chronic sleep problems such as narcolepsy and shift work sleep disorder, Modafinil helps increase wakefulness, focus, and productivity by stimulating the brain.


But how does Modafinil work precisely?


Through its powerful monamine, neuroprotective, and anti-oxidative effects, free radical inhibition, and drastic changes in histamine, norepinephrine, dopamine, and serotonin levels across different areas of the brain, Modafinil can help you maintain top efficiency for up to 12 hours straight. However, unlike other smart drugs out there, Modafinil doesn’t cause the usual brain stimulant symptoms such as jitters or rapid highs; rather, it produces smooth yet steady cognitive performance and clean, heightened focus so that your work breezes by without a trace of energy drain.


With its seamless and reliable effects on productivity, Modafinil can help you double or even triple peak performance intervals once it kicks in, which usually occurs about an hour after ingestion.




For optimal results, users have suggested keeping your Modafinil doses between 100 and 300 mg, just to stay on the safe side of the performance chart.


And how long does Modafinil last in practice? For a better image of the drug’s effects in real time, start by taking smaller doses and work your way to higher quantities over a few months. Modafinil usually lasts for about 10 to 12 hours, however some users have reported effects lasting all the way up to 15 hours.


Modafinil at Its Finest: Roundup of Modafinil Brain Benefits

All in all, Modafinil has quite a few benefits which make it a good choice when it comes to cognitive enhancers. Some of the most important cognitive performance gains which Modafinil use entails include:


  • increased resistance to fatigue;
  • improved attention span;
  • decreased anger, anxiety, and depression;
  • improved communication between neurons;
  • better athletic performance and reaction time;
  • reduced impulse control in addicts and people diagnosed with ADHD;
  • increased task enjoyment and work motivation;
  • better working memory;
  • reduced ADHD symptoms;
  • reduced symptoms of multiple sclerosis;
  • improved emotional processing;
  • relief of drug, alcohol, and gambling addiction;
  • improves fatigue levels, motivation, reaction time, and vigilance.


Other benefits outside cognitive benefits?


  • Modafinil is not a stimulant, while Modafinil acts like a stimulant in a way, it’s actually a eurogenic, aka. a wakefulness promoting agent.
  • It’s not addictive, in some cases it’s even been shown to help people get over addictions.


Modafinil’s Downsides

Although Modafinil is considered the smarter of the two nootropics, it still has some side effects you should watch out for. The list of common unpleasantries you may experience when using Modafinil nootropic includes:


  • sleep problems;
  • headaches (on higher than recommended doses);
  • nausea and/or diarrhea;
  • anxiety and edginess;
  • increased resting heart rate and blood pressure;
  • appetite dips and weight loss;
  • skin rashes (rare).


Adderall: Unleash Max Brain Power – and Work Enjoyment, Too

Initially created for people afflicted with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), Adderall is made from amphetamine and dextroamphetamine.

It works by increasing the levels of neurotransmitters including epinephrine, norepinephrine, and dopamine in a dose-dependent manner. In individuals with ADHD, Adderall stretches the attention span and smoothes out concentration for extended periods of time, allowing them to direct and productively employ surplus mental energy. In this respect, Adderall works as a classic brain stimulant and targets the brain areas in charge of hyperactivity, focus, and impulse control.

However, Adderall beats standard nootropics by a long shot since its effects go far beyond focus and productivity increase. Upon ingesting Adderall, you will experience ultimate work enjoyment, since the drug impacts the release of feel-good chemicals known as histamine and serotonin.

By improving your mood and stretching your focus, not only will Adderall help you beat your personal cognitive performance record, it will also make you fall in love with every task you’re tackling, be it writing a 10,000-word business report or preparing for the bar exam. The feeling of task enjoyment is the reason why many students often use Adderall for studying instead of Modafinil: after all, if you’re going to be memorizing tons of tedious data in the library for days on end, you might as well like it.


An Adderall Overall: Psychological Benefits of Adderall Use

Compared to Modafinil, Adderall offers slightly better results in terms of mood, cognitive performance, and overall energy and focus. The list of Adderall effects is quite lengthy, and some of its biggest advantages include:

  • drastically increased focus;
  • physical and mental stimulation;
  • significantly improved energy levels;
  • increased task enjoyment;
  • improved mood;
  • relief of anxiety and depression;
  • improved focus and tunnel vision;
  • better response time;
  • improved impulse control;
  • reduced appetite;
  • accelerated weight loss;
  • decreased aggression;
  • relief of narcolepsy and chronic fatigue.


Downsides of Adderall

Although Adderall can in some cases produce better short-term results than Modafinil, its long-term side effects are a force to be reckoned with and a good reason to think twice about consuming it regularly. When you consider that Adderall is basically a controlled version of amphetamines (speed), the side effects start to make sense. The list of frequently reported side effects of Adderall is rather off-putting, and includes conditions such as:

  • increased frequency of headaches;
  • irritability and restlessness;
  • anxiety and fears;
  • decrease in appetite;
  • unwanted weight loss;
  • disorientation and dizziness;
  • increased sweating;
  • sleeping problems and insomnia;
  • dry mouth;
  • nausea and vomiting
  • diarrhea;
  • abdominal pains;
  • hallucinations (in cases of excessive dosage or prolonged use);
  • motor ticks and tremors;
  • heart palpitations;
  • erectile dysfunction;
  • fever;
  • elevated blood pressure;
  • painful urination;
  • heavy crash;
  • seizures;
  • breathing problems;
  • heart attack;
  • chest pains;
  • blurred vision;
  • fainting;
  • dependency or addiction.


Availability of Modafinil and Adderall: Prescription, Please!

In the early days, smart pills were few and far between, and pretty costly, but thanks to continuous progress in the pharmaceutical industry and steadily multiplying the number of smart pill types on the global market, these days you can easily find your share of cognitive enhancement.


If you want to take your brain power to the max with the help of Modafinil, you can simply ask your GP to issue a prescription. If you’re experiencing sleep problems related to night shift work, your doctor probably won’t ask any additional questions.


If you’re looking to buy Modafinil we always recommend visiting your local doctor to get a prescription, and can be purchased on sites like AfinilExpress.


The same goes for Adderall: since this smart pill is usually given to individuals with narcolepsy and ADHD, you can get it on a standard prescription.


Since you can’t get Modafinil or Adderall over the counter, in case your doctor refuses to issue a prescription for either of them, it’s best to try your luck with online vendors. But although countless online stores ship Modafinil and Adderall worldwide, there are a few points you should bear in mind when placing the order.


  • Supplier credentials

As with any important online purchase, your safest nootropic bet is to check out customer recommendations and supplier rating before you entrust the store with your bank account and other personal data. Trustworthy nootropic webshops usually have a good rep among shoppers and all the critical info you need on them is just a couple of web searches away.  Reddit can be a great source of unbiased reviews.


  • Product quality

Product quality is another critical factor you should take into account when buying smart pills online. To get a better image of the nootropic quality available from different online stores, look up relevant production standards, policies, reviews, and customer feedback. It should help you pick the right supplier whose offering is truly worth your cash.


  • Product pricing

Product price isn’t necessarily a quality guarantee, but when it comes to smart pills, it can tell you a lot about supplier credibility. Before placing your order, compare prices online: ideally, they should be within about the same range across top-ranking stores and you can also decide whether to order your smart drugs by stack or in bulk.


  • Availability

In some stores, certain products are never actually available for order, which is why you should look at the availability labels before you order. As a rule, it’s always best to order smart pills from suppliers that have them in stock as it might save you weeks or months of waiting for the actual delivery.


  • Shipping terms

Once you’ve selected a nootropic supplier who offers best value for your money, check their shipping, return, and customer support policies. As a rule, the shorter the delivery time, the better, but do bear in mind the store’s refund options should anything go amiss with the order.



In the world we live in, productivity is key to success in all aspects in life – and thanks to the gods of nootropic industry, you can reach your peak mental performance by taking one of two highly effective pills.


If you’re in for bonus cognitive energy and sniper-style focus, go for Modafinil. But if you want to enjoy your productivity ride while it lasts and don’t mind a potentially heavier crash once the drugs effects wane, Adderall might be a better choice.


Aaron Weller

Aaron is the CEO & Co-Founder of Lucid. He brings a wealth of business smarts and startup experience to the team and is heading up the launch of future growth of the company.