It takes more than exercise and diet to lose body fat. Yes, you have to nail the basics but you’re going to need some help. That’s where cutting supplements come in.
The best cutting supplements will help you get rid of every last pound of fat so you can look your best. Many cutting supplements use multiple pathways to target fat loss. What are the best choices?
Let’s find out!
In a Hurry? Here is our top pick:
Quick Answer – The Best Cutting Supplements in 2020
- Rule 1 R1 Cut 10 – The Best Overall Cutting Supplement
- Evlution Nutrition Lean Mode – Best Stim-Free Cutting Supplement
- Universal Nutrition Animal Cuts – Best All-In-One Cutting Supplement
- 5% Nutrition Freak Show – Best GDA Cutting Supplement
- Jacked Factory Burn XT Black – Best Thermogenic Cutting Supplement
- SCUPLTnation Burn PM – Best Nighttime Cutting Supplement
- 5% Nutrition Keto aSalt – Best Keto Cutting Supplement
- Jacked Factory Dry XT – Best Diuretic
- Irwin Naturals Maximum Strength 3-in-1 Carb Blocker – The Best Carb Blocking Cutting Supplement
- Orphic Nutrition Garcinia Cambogia – Best Appetite Suppressant
- Condemned Labz Thyrogenic – Best Thyroid Cutting Supplement
Reviews – The Best Cutting Supplements
1. Rule 1 R1 Cut 10 – The Best Overall Cutting Supplement
R1 Cut 10 is a powdered cutting supplement that features a fully disclosed label with 10 total ingredients.
One of the stand-out ingredients in this formula is carnitine tartrate, which not only helps transport fat to be burned as energy, but also supports muscle mass.
There are several thermogenic ingredients that include 130mg of caffeine. There are also cognitive ingredients to help elevate focus and improve mood. Not bad for a company that’s mainly known for their protein powders!
The downside is that there are some artificial flavoring and colors. Still, the open-label, well-dosed ingredients, and balanced formula make Rule1 R1 Cut 10 the best overall cutting supplement.
- Features 1g Of L-Carnitine L-Tartrate
- Fully Open Label
- Convenient Powder Formula
- Contains Artificial Ingredients
2. Evlution Nutrition Lean Mode – Best Stim-Free Cutting Supplement
Evlution Nutrition Lean Mode is a stim-free cutting supplement that uses several mechanisms of action to help you lose excess body fat.
Lean Mode contains carnitine to transport stored fat so it can be used as fuel. It also stimulates the metabolism and controls appetite with green tea and green coffee bean. Plus, there’s cla to support lean muscle during your calorie-restricted fat loss phase.
This is a great product for anyone that doesn’t want stims. That means you can use it at any time of the day.
The downside is there are no focus ingredients. One of the challenges of fat loss is a lack of focus. Lean Mode is a good cutting supplement that could be great if it included 1-2 focus enhancers. Still, the formula is effective enough to make Evlution Nutrition Lean Mode the best stim-free cutting supplement.
- Stimulant Free
- Full Disclosure Labeling
- Use It Any Time Of The Day
- No Focus/Mood Ingredients
3. Universal Nutrition Animal Cuts – Best All-In-One Cutting Supplement
Universal Nutrition Animal Cuts is an “all-in-one” cutting supplement that attacks fat from multiple angles for effective results.
There’s an 8 complex formula that includes a stimulant complex to activate thermogenesis and increase energy.
There’s also a thyroid support complex that supports metabolic function. There’s also a nootropic complex for elevated focus and an improved mood. Plus there’s a cortisol blocking complex, a diuretic complex, and a CCK-boosting complex. Finally, there’s a complex that improves the absorption of the entire formula.
The main downside, and it’s a big one, is that each complex is a prop blend. That means you don’t know how much of each ingredient you’re getting. Still, Universal Nutrition Animal Cuts is a complete formula that can offer a total approach to fat loss. That makes Animal Cuts the best all-in-one cutting supplement.
- Complete Formula That Covers All Major Fat Loss Pathways
- Contains 40 Active Ingredients
- Convenient One Packet Per Serving Formula
- Every Complex Is A Prop Blend
- There’s No Listing Of The Total Caffeine Content
- May Be Too Many Pills For Some Users
4. 5% Nutrition Freak Show – Best GDA Cutting Supplement
5% Nutrition Freak Show is a glucose disposal agent that features full disclosure labeling and effective dosing. This is something a little different than most cutting supplements. Freak Show works by helping the body use excess carbohydrates to support muscle mass instead of being stored as body fat. It does this by manipulating insulin, one of the primary hormones in the body.
Freak Show features a strong formula that includes chromium, gymnema sylvestre, cinnamon, and berberine. The downside is the price. It’s a little more costly than competing brands. Still, the clear labeling and generous dosing make 5% Nutrition Freak Show the best GDA cutting supplement.
- Features Generous Dosing
- Balanced Formula
- Fully Disclosed Label
- May Be Too Pricey For Some Users
- A 6 Capsule Serving Size May Be Too Much For Some Users
5. Jacked Factory Burn XT Black – Best Thermogenic Cutting Supplement
Jacked Factory Burn XT Black is a more comprehensive version of the popular Burn XT. There’s more stimulants as well as a slow-release form of caffeine. This can help smooth out any harsh effects caused by the 305mg dose of caffeine. The other stims offer clean energy, more clarity, and elevated focus.
One of the most impressive things about Burn XT Black is the use of trademarked ingredients. In fact, of the 9 ingredients in this formula, 5 of them are trademarked. That means Jacked Factory is using premium quality, tested ingredients in a balanced formula. For this reason, Jacked Factory Burn XT Black is the best thermogenic cutting supplement.
- Fully Open-Label With Numerous Trademarked Ingredients
- Clean, Smooth Energy
- Effectively Dosed
- Tested For Quality, Potency & Purity
- May Be Too Much Caffeine For Some Users
6. SCUPLTnation Burn PM – Best Nighttime Cutting Supplement
SCULPTnation Burn PM is a cutting supplement that’s meant to be used at night only. This means it should be stacked with the daytime cutting supplement of your choice to provide around-the-clock fat-burning.
Burn PM features fat burning ingredients such as green coffee bean and raspberry ketones but stands out by containing ingredients to help you sleep, such as melatonin and tryptophan. There’s also white kidney bean extract to help block carbohydrate storage. Also, the label is fully transparent so you know exactly what you are getting.
Overall, this is a good formula that can be an effective addition to your fat loss program.
- Promotes A Good Night’s Sleep
- Burns Fat All Night
- Fully Disclosed Label
- May Be Too Pricey For Some Users
7. 5% Nutrition Keto aSalt – Best Keto Cutting Supplement
5% Nutrition Keto Salt is a powdered source of bhb salts that help the body achieve a state of ketosis faster.
The keto diet is based on the idea of cutting carb intake so low that the body falls into ketosis so it can use fat for energy. One scoop of Keto aSalt provides 11g of bhb salts! That’s one of, if not the, strongest doses we’ve seen. There are also ingredients that help the body transport and use stored fat for energy.
This creates a very effective keto-based cutting supplement. One of the great things about Keto aSalt is that it does not use any artificial ingredients. It uses natural flavors and a touch of stevia. The other great thing is that it’s a transparent label.
The only downside of Keto aSalt may be the taste and texture. Otherwise, 5% Nutrition Keto aSalt is the best keto cutting supplement.
- A Huge 11g OF BHB Salts Per Serving
- Helps Transport Fat To Be Burned
- Full Disclosure Labeling
- The Taste May Not Appeal To All Users
- Some Users Feel The Texture Is Too Gritty
8. Jacked Factory Dry XT – Best Diuretic
Jacked Factory Dry XT is a diuretic cutting supplement that is designed to reduce water retention and help detox the body.
Some users may see a diuretic as something a bodybuilder might use to get ripped before a contest. The truth is that anyone that is experiencing bloat and excess water retention can use Dry XT.
The use of a diuretic can help you look thinner and more defined. Dry XT features an open-label and 9 ingredients including dandelion, perhaps the most common herbal diuretic.
Dry XT also contains potassium which can help prevent cramps that can be caused by dehydration.
The fully disclosed formula and solid ingredient panel make Jacked Factory Dry XT the best diuretic cutting supplement.
- Helps Get Rid Of Excess Water Weight
- Well-Dosed Formula
- Fully Disclosed
- May Cause Cramps & Dehydration – Make Sure You Stay Hydrated While Using
9. Irwin Naturals Maximum Strength 3-in-1 Carb Blocker – The Best Carb Blocking Cutting Supplement
Irwin Naturals Maximum Strength 3-in-1 Carb Blocker is a product that helps block the number of calories from carbohydrates from being absorbed by the body.
3-in-1 Carb Blocker also improves digestion and supports metabolism.
If you eat high carb meals during your overall diet plan, you can block the effect of too many carbs with Maximum Strength 3-in-1 Carb Blocker. This helps you stay on track as you chase your fat loss goals.
The fact that this product offers a complete formula that’s well-dosed and fully disclosed makes Irwin Naturals Maximum Strength 3-in-1 Carb Blocker the best carb blocking cutting supplement.
- Effective Carb Blocking Formula
- Fully Open Label
- Improves Digestion
- May Give Some Users An Excuse To Overeat Carb Heavy Foods
10. Orphic Nutrition Garcinia Cambogia – Best Appetite Suppressant
Orphic Nutrition Garcinia Cambogia is a well thought out formula that helps control hunger as well as promote an improved mood.
Garcinia contains the active ingredient hca, which stimulates the release of serotonin, a brain chemical that helps you feel full sooner. It also supports mood and helps control anxiety.
Garcinia Cambogia features an open-label and effective dosing. The addition of chromium helps prevent excess glucose from being stored as fat. That helps give Orphic Nutrition Garcinia Cambogia a definite advantage over other one-dimensional hunger control products.
This is why Orphic Nutrition Garcinia Cambogia is the best appetite-controlling cutting supplement available.
- Over 2g Garcinia Per Serving – 95% HCA
- Contains Chromium
- Effective Hunger Control
- Not As Effective By Itself – Works Best When Used With Other Cutting Supplements
11. Condemned Labz Thyrogenic – Best Thyroid Cutting Supplement
Condemned Labz Thyrogenic is a thermogenic cutting supplement that supports thyroid gland health.
This is more important than many people might realize because the thyroid controls how well your metabolism functions. It makes sense to include thyroid support when you’re considering what type of cutting supplement to use.
Thyrogenic also supports thermogenesis without the use of stimulants, giving it a dual effect on fat loss. Thyrogenic features an open-label and a well-dosed formula.
The downside may be the cost. The other downside is that the hardcore bodybuilding image of this company may turn off some users. Still, Condemned Labz Thyrogenic is the best thyroid support cutting supplement on the market.
- Supports Thyroid Health & Function
- Improves Mood
- Open-Label – Well Dosed
- Hardcore Bodybuilder Image May Turn Off Some Users
Buying Guide – How To Choose The Best Cutting Supplement?
What Are Cutting Supplements?
A cutting supplement is any product designed to help you lose excess body fat and look your best. Some people may think of competitive bodybuilding, and that’s fine. Still, others might think of looking great at the beach, and that’s fine too. The bottom line is that when you’re “cut”, you look lean and defined.
Types Of Cutting Supplements
There are several different types of cutting supplements. Let’s take a look at each:
Thermogenic – A thermogenic is usually a stimulant-based cutting supplement that stimulates the process of thermogenesis and increases energy. You may remember from some of my other guides that thermogenesis means increasing body temperature by burning more calories. While not every thermogenic contains stimulants, the most effective ones do.
Stim-Free Cutting Supplements – This is any product designed to burn fat without the use of stimulants.
Keto-Specific – There’s an entire category of keto-related products designed to help your body achieve and stay in a state of ketosis. This is when your body uses stored fat as its preferred source of energy.
Carb Blockers – Several products help block the body’s use of carbohydrates. This means you can eat carbs a little more freely and not have to worry about the excess being stored as fat. The problem with a product like this is that it may lead to excessive carbohydrate consumption and an excuse to overeat.
Thyroid Support – One thing that many fad diets and cutting supplements overlook is the simple fact that the thyroid is a gland in the body that controls the metabolism. (1) If your thyroid is not functioning at peak efficiency, you can have serious problems controlling your body fat levels.
Diuretics – Excess water retention can cause you to look overweight and feel bloated. Getting rid of excess water weight can make a big difference in how you look. It can also be a strong motivating factor because the changes in your appearance can be a great start to your fat loss journey. This is a product that should be specifically used according to the directions.
Appetite Suppressants – Controlling your appetite can make a huge difference in your results. After all, putting the fork down and walking out of the kitchen is one of the keys to effective fat loss. These products can help you do exactly that.
How To Choose The Best Cutting Supplement
The main thing to keep in mind when choosing a cutting supplement is to choose the one that best supports your goals. If you are sensitive to caffeine and other stimulants, you probably shouldn’t use a stim-based thermogenic. On the other hand, if you don’t have a problem with stimulants, it makes sense to go with an effective stim-based thermogenic instead of, say, CLA.
Any supplement you’re considering should contain ingredients that have been studied and are effectively dosed. Your product of interest should also feature full-disclosure labeling so you can see exactly what you are paying for. The best cutting supplements are balanced formulas that can target multiple areas of fat loss. Ultimately, this is the best type of cutting supplement to consider.
The Ingredients You Should Look For
Caffeine – This is the most commonly used stimulant in the world. You’ll find it in quite a few thermogenics. Caffeine stimulates thermogenesis and increases energy. (2, 3)
Capsimax Cayenne Pepper – This ingredient is a trademarked version of cayenne pepper. Cayenne contains capsicum, the active ingredient that gives them their heat. It also stimulates thermogenesis and helps decrease appetite. Capsimax helps prevent the burning sensation that regular cayenne peppers can cause in the digestive tract. (4)
Carnitine – L-Carnitine is synthesized from lysine and methionine, which are two essential amino acids. Its primary function is to transport fatty acids to the cells to be used as energy by the body. There are different forms of carnitine with each form having slightly different benefits besides fat transport. For example, l-carnitine-l-tartrate supports muscle mass and recovery and acetyl-l-carnitine has cognitive benefits. (5, 6)
Synephrine – Also known as bitter orange, synephrine replaced ephedra when it was first banned back in the 90s. It has similar benefits that include thermogenesis and energy but is not as strong, which is one of the reasons it was used. (7)
Yohimbine – Yohimbe is a small tree that originates in South Africa that contains an active ingredient known as yohimbine. While popular as an aphrodisiac, it has received a lot of attention lately because it’s thought to be involved in burning “stubborn” fat. Stubborn fat refers to the last few pounds of fat in areas such as the stomach and lower back. These areas are considered “stubborn” because it takes a lot of effort to lose the fat deposited there. Typically it’s the last to go when you’re getting lean, and it doesn’t want to go without a fight. Yohimbine is also considered to be a stimulant that activates thermogenesis. (8)
Guggul Extract – Common in thyroid support formulas, Guggul is a resin that’s secreted by the myrrh tree located in India, Central Asia, and North Africa. Guggul is used in Ayurvedic medicine for a variety of conditions.
Kelp – This is a form of seaweed that has a high iodine content. Iodine is a mineral that’s important to proper thyroid function.
Ashwagandha – This ingredient is another herb used in Ayurvedic medicine. This ingredient is used in cutting supplements to help lower levels of cortisol, the destructive catabolic hormone that’s released by increased stress. It’s widely believed that excess cortisol can make you fat. That’s not entirely accurate. Stress can lead to overeating, which can lead to fat gain. Cortisol also affects insulin resistance which can also lead to unwanted belly fat. The main problem with cortisol is that it’s a catabolic hormone and that affects muscle mass. To preserve muscle and stimulate muscle growth, you should be in a state of anabolism. Put simply: anabolism is the positive or building phase of metabolism and catabolism is the negative or tearing down phase of metabolism. (9)
Dandelion Extract – An herb commonly used as a diuretic that also contains a wide range of vitamins and minerals. (10)
BHB Salts – BHB, or beta-hydroxybutyrate is a form of ketone body that is mainly used as fuel by the brain, heart, and muscles. They are a common supplement used by keto dieters because it can help them achieve a state of ketosis faster.
The Best Way To Use Cutting Supplements
Since there are many different types of cutting supplements that include several stimulant-based products, the best way to use the cutting supplement of your choice is to follow all label directions. This is especially true of any stim-based product. Most often, you will be directed to begin with a half serving to determine your tolerance. That’s great advice. Otherwise, read the label carefully, and do not increase the dosage above what is recommended.
If fat loss is your goal, cutting supplements can make your efforts much more successful. This guide gives you the best choices. All the products listed are well-dosed and the majority are fully disclosed.
The best overall cutting supplement is Rule 1 R1 Cut 10. It’s a powdered drink that features a balanced formula designed to do what a great cutting supplement should: target fat loss through multiple pathways.
If you don’t want a powder, there’s Jacked Factory Burn XT Black. This is the best thermogenic cutting supplement and features clean, smooth energy from a mix of slow and fast release caffeine. Jacked Factory Burn XT Black also uses several trademarked ingredients for quality and purity.
If you’re not into stims, there’s Evlution Nutrition Lean Mode. This is a stim-free formula that transports fat to be used as fuel, helps control appetite, and stimulates the metabolism so your body burns more calories.
When it comes to cutting supplements, there’s a ton of great choices!
Make your choice and get going!
- Astrup, A, et al; “Caffeine: a double-blind, placebo-controlled study of its thermogenic, metabolic, and cardiovascular effects in healthy volunteers”; Am J Clin Nutr; 51(5):759-67; 1990; https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/2333832
- Koot P, Deurenberg P. Comparison of changes in energy expenditure and body temperatures after caffeine consumption. Ann Nutr Metab 1995; 39(3):135-142.
- Kraemer WJ; Volek JS; French DN; Rubin MR; Sharman MJ; Gómez AL; Ratamess NA; Newton RU; Jemiolo B; Craig BW; Häkkinen K; (n.d.). The Effects of L-carnitine L-tartrate Supplementation on Hormonal Responses to Resistance Exercise and Recovery. Retrieved from https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/12930169/
- Braintropic.com Research Team. (2020, March 23). Acetyl-L-Carnitine – Review of Benefits, Effects, Dosage, and More. Retrieved from https://www.braintropic.com/nootropics/acetyl-l-carnitine/
- SM;, O. (n.d.). Yohimbine: The Effects on Body Composition and Exercise Performance in Soccer Players. Retrieved from https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/17214405/
- K;, C. B. A. C. R. S. S. (n.d.). The Diuretic Effect in Human Subjects of an Extract of Taraxacum Officinale Folium Over a Single Day. Retrieved from https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/19678785/