Last Updated on January, 2023
Muscle pump is something that a majority of the individuals who workout thrive for. It is what provides a Feel Good exercise by relaxing your blood vessels and allowing more blood, oxygen, and nutrients to reach your muscles.
On top of that, you can also experience muscle growth as well as improved energy and focus. But not all pre-workouts provide you with that boost in muscle pumps, at least in my experience.
My team and I set out on a mission to try out 20 pre-workout supplements that promise to boost pumps. After trying them out and doing extensive research on each, we’ve picked out 10 based on the ingredients used, taste, effectiveness, price, and more.
So, if you want a real pump pre-workout that’ll also provide all the benefits I’ve mentioned above, read on!
Table Of Contents
- Top 10 of the Best Pre-Workout Supplements for Pump and Vascularity
- 1. 4-Gauge
- 2. Jacked-Factory Altius Clinically Dosed Pre-Workout
- 3. Cellucor NO3 Ultimate
- 4. Jacked-Factory Pump Surge – Stim Free Pump & Nootropic Pre-Workout
- 5. Vintage Blast
- 6. Engn Shred Pre-Workout
- 7. Universal – Animal Pump
- 8. Pump-N-Grow Pre-Workout
- 9. ProSupps Dr. Jekyll NitroX Lower-Stimulant Pre-Workout
- 10. Do Vitamins PurePump
- Ingredients to Look for Before Buying a Pre-Workout Supplement for Pump
- What is Pump?
- How Does a Pump Pre-Workout Work?
- When to Take Pre-Workout Supplements?
- Side Effects of Pump Pre-Workouts
- Other Ways to Get Pumps
- Final Thoughts: The Best Pre-Workout for Pump and Vascularity
Top 10 of the Best Pre-Workout Supplements for Pump and Vascularity
Without any delays, let’s get straight in.
This pre-workout supplement has been taking this industry by storm; if this is your first hearing of it, where have you been?
4-Gauge, in my experience, is the cleanest pre-workout I’ve tried and is probably out in the market right now.
I tried it for the first time and never looked back; it’s that good. My pumps were effective and were like never before. You must try it to experience it.
Ingredients are where the 4-Gauge pre-workout supplement shines. As mentioned earlier, it is one of the cleanest and all-natural; with that, it’s literally packed.
There’s all the ingredients that you would want in a pre-workout.
Let’s start with the main ones first. And what’s more main than Caffeine in these supplements?
4-Gauge has 150mg of caffeine; along with that, there’s L-Theanine. These two ingredients, when combined together like this, can produce outstanding outcomes like; increased mental focus and boosts in motivation with no jitters.
There are also other ingredients, such as; L-Citrulline and Creatine, all of which can increase your nitric oxide production and blood flow resulting in greater pumps, stamina, and strength unlike any other supplements out there.
Creatine and L-Citrulline are also excellent for muscle building. They’re perfect for improving endurance and recovery time too. This means less fatigue during and after workouts.
Another main thing to note here is the side effects; I, throughout my usage, experienced none. One reason for that is that it’s completely natural, and the other is the absence of the infamous Beta-alanine, which is known to cause itchiness and tingling sensations during workouts.
For me, beta-alanine is no issue, I’ve tried many pre-workouts with it, but for some, it can lead to a not-so-good workout experience.
If you think that the absence of b-alanine can lead to performance hits, my simple answer is NO! I experienced zero hiccups because other ingredients present here perfectly compensate for it, and I’m pretty sure that you’ll experience no downsides during your sessions.
- L-Citrulline: 6000mg
- Creatine Monohydrate: 1000mg
- Caffeine: 150mg
2. Jacked-Factory Altius Clinically Dosed Pre-Workout
This is another one of the best choices for your pre-workout demands. Jacked Factory solely works on manufacturing workout supplements. They’ve got one in every category, from pre-workout to post-workout; they’ve even got intra-workout supplements.
Altius is one of Jacked Factory’s long list of available pre-workouts, and it’s also one of their best sellers.
Quite rightly so, this thing is freaking good, and I was pleasantly surprised with the results it was able to provide.
Also, tons of positive reviews loom across the internet, all appreciating the energy boost and increased blood flow to muscles this pre-workout was able to provide. That’s true, as I was experiencing the same.
All thanks to the ingredients used in the supplement. It just has the perfect blend of everything. While we’re on the topic of ingredients, I just have to mention that the amount of creatine present in this pre-workout there’s 3000mg which is excellent and contributes so much to your workout performance.
Citrulline malate present here is what’s responsible for the production of the nitric oxide for increased muscle pumps.
I was less fatigued during my workouts too. This might be due to the vitamin B12, which is able to provide extra energy by improving the production of red blood cells.
Unlike in 4-Gauge, beta-alanine is one of the primary doses of Altius. Even though it has its downsides, it’s pretty good when it comes to not letting your muscles get acidic and wear out during your exercise sessions.
Apart from that, all the other ingredients like caffeine are all added in the Altius pre-workout, and its ability to maximize muscle pumps just stand out thanks to the exceptional added dose of citrulline malate.
Speaking of caffeine, the amount present here can be a little too high for some. There’s 325mg which makes taking this supplement later in the day a big NO!
Other than that, it does what it’s intended to do, which is to increase nitric oxide production and bring you good pump and endurance.
- Vitamin B12: 500mcg
- Citrulline malate: 8000mg
- Creatine Monohydrate: 3000mg
- Caffeine: 325mg
- Beta-alanine: 3200mg
3. Cellucor NO3 Ultimate
If you’re in search of a stimulant-free pre-workout that can also help you experience skin tearing pumps, then the Cellucor NO3 Ultimate is a pre-workout that you need to check out. It’s probably one of the best stimulant-free pre-workouts available on the market.
The pump formula is what caught our eyes in the first place. It is, by the way, a pre-workout that mainly focuses on improving pumps, and in doing that, it contains all the needed ingredients.
Citrulline, nitrosigine, arginine AKG, NO3-T arginine nitrate are all present.
You won’t even notice the absence of stimulants because the ingredient blend works excellent through and through. I was very impressed.
It, as promised and without a doubt, increases blood flow by increasing your nitric oxide production. Which, in turn, helps to get massive pumps.
Taste is something that’s very important, at least for me, and the Cellucor NO3 Ultimate tastes excellent with quite a few flavor options. There’s an unflavored option too, which most pre-workout don’t have.
Other than that, there’s nothing much to report. It’s one of the few pre-workouts for pump and vascularity that’s stim-free and is effective at the same time. You can try it out for yourself, and if it does not work as promised, no problem because NO3 Ultimate comes with a 30-day full money-back guarantee.
- Vitamin C: 250mg
- L-Citrulline: 4000mg
- Arginine AKG: 1000mg
- NO3-T arginine nitrate: 500mg
- Nitrosigine: 1500mg
4. Jacked-Factory Pump Surge – Stim Free Pump & Nootropic Pre-Workout
Another Jacked Factory supplement, but this time it’s stim-free. If you’re a fan of the Jacked Factory pre-workouts and want a stimulant-free version from them, this is probably the one and only option from them.
It is almost similar to the Cellucor NO3 Ultimate; the main focus here is to increase pumps, just like the name suggests.
One of the similarities between Pump Surge and NO3 Ultimate is the amount of ingredients added.
The Pump Surge has 7 ingredients; L-Citrulline, Betaine Anhydrous, Rhodiola Rosea Root Extract, Alpha-GPC, Hydromax Glycerol Powder, Huperizine, and Bioperine. All of which work on fulfilling the promise.
You know the effectiveness of these ingredients, all of the listed ones except for the Bioperine work excellent in improving pump. I can vouch for it as I’ve tried this pump supplement.
We should not forget the nootropic ingredients added in this pre-workout; it perfectly compensates for the absence of caffeine. With its brain-enhancing ingredients, Pump Surge kept me focused throughout my session without any hiccups.
With all things considered, Jacked-Factory’s non-stim pre-workout supplement is exceptional; it does what it is supposed to do without any problems whatsoever.
And also, there are six flavors for you to choose from, and the taste is as good as the pre-workout effectiveness.
- L-Citrulline: 5000mg
- Extract Betaine Anhydrous: 2.5mg
- Taurine: 2000mg
- Alpha-GPC: 150mg
- Huperzine A: 50mcg
- AstraGin: 25mg
5. Vintage Blast
Marketed as the world’s first two-stage natural pre-workout, this is one of the few supplements that really got me tempted to try out. I couldn’t wait to get my hands on this pre-workout ever since placing the order.
The ingredients are the real star of the show in the Vintage Blast. Old School Labs, the company behind this well-rounded pre-workout, has gone out of its comfort zone. First, it is said to be Microencapsulated ingredients, which means they digest much slower, resulting in longer workouts.
By the way, it is what makes the Vintage Blast the first two-stage pre-workout.
Anyways, coming back to the benefits, Not only does it support longer workouts, but the ingredients here are also known to improve recovery time significantly.
There is not a whole load of ingredients present here, mind you. They are typical pre-workout ingredients, with other ingredients mostly being anti-caking agents and some natural flavorings.
Everything works as it should, though; these are the main ingredients that have gone into the making of this pre-workout supplement; l-citrulline malate, beta-alanine, l-arginine AKG, l-carnitine tartrate, and caffeine.
Vintage Blast, unlike many pre-workout supplements, is something unique, and it works. The improved nitric oxide production, focus, and endurance, combined with the two-stage effect in my experience, for sure leads to lengthy workouts.
- Caffeine: 150mg
- L-Citrulline: 5000mg
- Beta-Alanine: 1000mg
6. Engn Shred Pre-Workout
The thermogenic benefits this pre-workout provides are what caught my attention first. If you want endless endurance, a good pump, sharp focus, and on top of that, a good fat burner, the Engn Shred is a pre-workout that you can add to your wishlist.
There’s an excellent list of ingredients such as; Yohimbe Bark Extract, Conjugated Linoleic Acid, L-Carnitine L-Tartrate, along with another few in this pre-workout. These are all great in helping you shed pounds.
Ingredients like Yohimbe are also great in keeping your muscle fatigue at bay.
This is not the only set of ingredients inside this pre-workout; there’s a lot, I mean a lot.
For increased energy levels, boost in pump, and pin-sharp focus, ingredients like green tea leaf extract, L-Tyrosine, andbeta-alanine are integrated into this supplement.
Overall it’s a great supplement that works impressively well. The only gripe I have is that some ingredients are hidden behind a proprietary blend. I hate when supplements do this.
Anyways the reason why Engn Shred earned its place in this list is because of the ingredients. Even though the exact numbers aren’t mentioned, they’re proven to be effective, and the supplement really does what it’s intended to do.
A little note on the taste and the flavor options. The Engn Shred is a delicious pre-workout that has an excellent set of flavors; Blue Raz, Fruit Punch, and Cherry Limeade are all three available.
- L-Carnitine: 500mg
- Vitamin B12: 25mcg
- Folic Acid: 800mcg
- Beta-Alanine: 1600mg
7. Universal – Animal Pump
The name literally says it all. Animal Pump from Universal is something that most pre-workout supplements aren’t. The packaging is what separates this from the pack; I’ll cover more about that later. First, let’s look at the important bits.
Animal pump is a good pre-workout, it’s not marketed as stim-free, but the absence of caffeine is something that’s positive if you’re sensitive to it. That does not take a toll on the effectiveness, though, as mentioned above, it’s a perfectly fine pre-workout that does its job without any problems, thanks to the other ingredients present.
L-citrulline, creatine, and arginine are all going to provide you that pump you thrive for. On top of that, the presence of green tea extract will be able to boost energy levels and improve overall performance.
However, just like EVL Ultimate, the Animal Pump hides behind a proprietary blend which is a bummer. Not many, including me, are a fan of this anyways; it is what it is, and there’s no hit to the overall effectiveness.
As I always say, it does what it’s intended to do.
For the packaging now, in simple words, it’s convenient. Each serving of this supplement is packed in a sachet, which means you no longer need to take the whole container to the gym. You can simply throw in one or two of these and get to work.
- Magnesium: 72mg
8. Pump-N-Grow Pre-Workout
Anabolic Warfare is known for its hardcore supplements which beginners should simply stay away from. Pump-N-Grow enters the scene and is different from the supplements they’ve made earlier.
First of all, Pump-N-Grow is stim-free, with amino acids, such as nitrosigine; they think there is no need for jittery stimulants. Nitrosigine excellently improves muscle pump and focus. This is great news if you’re someone who’s sensitive to stimulants.
Pump-N-Grow contains seven ingredients in its formula, and all of them really seem to pay off.
And by the way, it’s not a proprietary blend. Benefits from familiar ingredients like; L-Citrulline and b-alanine can be experienced.
On top of that, Highly Branched Cyclic Dextrin, which is a complex carbohydrate, can help in keeping your blood sugars constant because of its slow absorption into the bloodstream.
All of these are great, but for me, the effects didn’t last as long as other pre-workouts; everything faded away relatively quickly. However, my colleagues did not have any problems and reported they had some good sessions.
It just goes to show that the results are somewhat inconsistent. If it works, it’s really extremely effective, though.
- L-Citrulline: 1000mg
- Nitrosigine: 200mg
- Highly Branched Cyclic Dextrin: 1000mg
- Beta Alanine: 1500mg
9. ProSupps Dr. Jekyll NitroX Lower-Stimulant Pre-Workout
NitroX is a pre-workout supplement that gets the perfect middle ground when it comes to stimulants; it’s not too high or too low.
The amount of caffeine is all perfect, and if night workouts are your thing, this pre-workout can be your ideal companion as the amount of caffeine is just perfect to not keep you up all night.
It’s also got a stellar dose of creatine and b-alanine to help you get enough pump throughout your session. Just so you know, L-Citrulline is present here too.
Taste is where the focus should go in their next supplement; it does not match up to the competition. It’s not bad. It just needs a bit of improvement.
- L-Citrulline: 1500mg
- Creatine: 1000mg
- Beta-Alanine: 2500mg
- Caffeine: 100mg
10. Do Vitamins PurePump
There’re not many pre-workout supplements for Paleo, Keto, and Vegan diets. And that’s where the Do Vitamins PurePump comes in. It’s an excellent choice for anyone who’s into different types of diets.
A quality set of ingredients are what makes this pre-workout supplement special. It is excellent for nitric oxide production and muscle endurance. Do Vitamins PurePump contains everything a typical pre-workout would have; creatine and b-alanine are used here, and the pre-workout works effectively.
The only reason it’s down here in the list is because of the taste; this thing does not taste good. There are two flavors; lemon and unflavored. We went with the lemon, and it was disappointing; pretty sure the unflavored would be on the same page.
Other than that, there’s nothing to complain about. It just works, and that’s what’s important at the end of the day.
- Vitamin B12: 50mcg
- Creatine: 1000mg
- B-alanine: 2000mg
- Caffeine: 200mg
Ingredients to Look for Before Buying a Pre-Workout Supplement for Pump
The ingredients in a pre-workout supplement for pump should be able to act as nitric oxide boosters and increase blood flow and oxygen flow to working muscles while working out. If not, there’s no point in getting one as it won’t be able to produce the results you crave.
With that in mind, these are the ingredients that you should have in your pre-workout for best pump and vascularity.
L-citrulline is one of the essential amino acids, and it is probably the most important ingredient that should be present in a pre-workout for pump. This can enhance blood flow and reduce blood pressure by opening up the veins and arteries. (1)
Betaine is known to increase the level of water inside your muscles cells leading to hydrated muscles. What this means is, increased muscle pumps throughout your exercise. Also, Betaine can support protein synthesis and improve power.
Creatine is excellent in improving your muscle strength plus helps you work harder for longer in the gym. It can also give you a bigger muscle pump and is ideal for minimizing fatigue and Improving muscle recovery. (2)
These are all the ingredients that you need to look out for if you need that pump. Most of the pre-workouts we’ve covered here contain all of or at least some of the ingredients mentioned above, meaning you won’t have to spend a whole lot of time looking at the label of each pre-workout.
Other ingredients such as; caffeine and beta-alanine are all great to have, but they do not necessarily give you the best pump.
What is Pump?
A temporary increase in your muscle size during weight lifting is what’s called the pump. It occurs when fluids such as blood and water pile up in the muscles during movement. That’s possibly the most straightforward answer I can give you.
It’s more of a complex physiological process, So I’ll save this for another piece of content.
Anyways, moving on, let’s look at why it matters to most.
Why Does it Matter?
Pumps are sort of great motivators; however, above that, they’re excellent in contributing to long-term muscle growth. Even though the effects of a pump pre-workout quickly taper, when you get a pump, you put enough challenge to your muscles to cause them to grow.
How Does a Pump Pre-Workout Work?
The main aim of pump pre-workouts is to increase the nitric oxide levels with a few selected ingredients, all of them are mentioned above. Those ingredients will lead to the expansion of blood vessels, thus increasing the blood flow to the muscles.
Does it Really Provide Pumps?
Yes, pre-workout for pumps really work, and they are able to provide the pump you thrive for. The ingredients are what matters the most though; if you decide to go with a pre-workout without any of the ingredients I’ve mentioned above, they may not work.
I’ve tried these pre-workouts and have had very positive experiences throughout. I’m pretty sure any of the supplements reviewed above will help you gain pumps without a shallow of a doubt.
When to Take Pre-Workout Supplements?
Timing is very important when it comes to the consumption of pre-workouts if you’re to see effective results. Wrong timing of pre workout can have negative effects too.
As a general rule of thumb, taking pre-workouts 20 to 30 minutes before you start your session would work great as this time is enough for your body to absorb the active nutrients.
Side Effects of Pump Pre-Workouts
Just like all supplements, a pre-workout for pump has side effects to it too. However, these are not just limited to these pre-workouts; everyone has kinda the same side effects. Let’s take a look at them.
Itchy and Tingling Sensation
This is probably a given when it comes to almost all pre-workouts. The culprit behind this one is clear; I’ve already mentioned it: beta-alanine. These can cause a flushing effect on your skin where it can become red, blotchy, and in some cases, itchy as if you have hives. It’s nothing severe and can only up to 30 to 60 mins.
Pre-workouts contain caffeine, so if you take them at night, you’re for sure going to be looking at your ceiling while in bed. To prevent this, you’ll have to avoid taking pre-workout supplements with caffeine later in the day. Plus, recovery will also be messed up, as you won’t have a good night’s sleep.
Headaches can be experienced with pre-workouts in rare instances. This is due to citrulline. As you may know, citrulline is known to increase blood flow; this affects your brain along with your muscles leading to headaches and migraines.
Headaches can occur due to overstimulation from caffeine too.
When consumed in high doses, certain ingredients in pre-workouts can lead to dehydration. Also worth noting that some are put in to do this on purpose.
These are some side effects you might experience with a pre-workout for the pump. It’s essential to note that you won’t fall victim to all of these, and most only affect a small group of people.
Other Ways to Get Pumps
Yes, you can gain pumps with the help of pre-workouts. However, they aren’t the only option. Below are some alternate ways to earn pump.
These tips can make a difference even if you use pre-workout supps.
Get Proper Sleep
If you’re not getting adequate sleep, both your muscles and central nervous system (CNS) will not be properly recovered. Lack of recovery can take a toll on your energy levels, strength, stamina, and, most importantly, your pump. So make sure to get around 7-9 hours of sleep per night—especially if you’ll be training the following day!
It’s important to stay well-hydrated. Getting enough water will lead to greater blood volume and fluid, which in turn will fill your arteries and veins and intensify the pump effect. At least 2-3 cups of water are essential in the hours leading up to your workout. Don’t stop there; continue to hydrate yourself throughout the day.
Hold the Squeeze
Avoid releasing the squeeze too quickly. Holding on to the squeeze will force additional blood into the fibers leading to a greater degree of micro-trauma. This, in turn, will help you gain significantly greater muscle hypertrophy ‘’also known as pump’’.
Decrease Your Rest Time
Too much rest can ruin your plans of getting that perfect pump. Make sure to shorten your rest periods as this will increase blood flow to your muscle tissues leading to your preferred outcome. A rest time of no more than 30-60 seconds is enough when chasing a mean pump.
Avoid flying each rep and perform them more slowly. Controlled movement when it comes to exercise can increase the time under tension resulting in the squeeze, which, as you may know, can provide the pump. Combine this with shorter rests, and it’ll do a whole lot of good.
Final Thoughts: The Best Pre-Workout for Pump and Vascularity
Some of the best pre-workout for pump and vascularity covered. If you were struggling to find a perfect match all this time, I think you’ve got it now. Every pre-workout on this list is able to prime and produce the pump.
But 4-Gauge needs a special shoutout; it’s just one step above all else.
The combination of ingredients like creatine, caffeine, and L-citrulline all work exceptional when it comes to providing pump, and top it up with the focus, energy boost, and endurance you’re looking at the best pre-workout for pump and vascularity in the market. Period.
Hope the content helped you make a purchase decision. Let us know how your pick worked for you in the comments.
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