Ritual vitamins are some of the more trendier vitamin supplement for women.
You may be wondering, “which is the best multivitamin brand?”
Our answer, based on extensive knowledge of the marketplace, would almost certainly be Ritual Essential for Women.
This multivitamin sits comfortably at the top of our best multivitamins for women in 2020 rankings, and we like it so much that wrote this review to share that passion with you.
This review of Ritual Essential for Women will tell you everything you need to know about the product: what it does, what’s in it, how it works, and all sorts of other information.
Here’s what this review will cover:
What are multivitamins?
The main focus of this review will be the benefits of Ritual Multivitamin for Women, but we’ve included a quick introduction of multivitamins in general in case you’re not familiar.
Put simply, a multivitamin is a supplement designed to plug gaps in your dietary intake of various essential vitamins and minerals.
And we think Ritual Essential is the best out there.
There are a few criteria guiding our decision to choose “the best” product:
- No filler, bulking agents, or colouring agents.
- Contains vitamins and minerals required by the female physiology, i.e. some combination of Calcium, vitamin D, vitamin K, iron, and B-complex vitamins.
- Efficient ingredient delivery.
- Use of effective forms of constituent ingredients.
- Suitable for vegetarians and vegans.
Ritual Essential ticks all these boxes.
Why take multivitamins?
In short, they’re a great way to get all the macronutrients your body needs to stay healthy.
If your diet isn’t as good as you’d like it to be, multivitamins can help to plug the gaps in your dietary intake.
There is good evidence that multivitamins are associated with positive health benefits.
You may doubt whether multivitamins are worth taking – or whether they even work – and this is a fair question. But because there are so many products on the market, there is not a definitive yes or no answer.
We think that Ritual – among several other multivitamins we recommend – can and will work when taken as directed.
The key thing to remember is that multivitamins are designed to top up what you get in your diet. You still need to seek out healthy dietary sources of the vitamins and minerals your body needs.
A multivitamin should never be used as a substitute for a healthy, balanced, and varied diet; nor are they intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.
Why take special women’s multivitamins?
“What is a good multivitamin for a woman?” is a question we hear quite often.
And it’s an important distinction. Men’s and women’s bodies are different, which means that for multivitamins to be as effective as possible they must be tailored to the unique physiological needs of the person taking them.
Women have different requirements around calcium, folate, and iron. They also need different levels of B and D vitamins. Any effective women’s multivitamin should be built around these needs.
Ritual Essential is designed primarily for women aged 18-50 who are not pregnant.
Their website says that the product may benefit women outside that age bracket, but that you should check with a doctor first if this applies to you.
Who are Ritual
The mission statement on their website says it best:
“Your Healthiest Future”.
Ritual exist to help you build a foundation for better health by filling the gaps in your diet, and making sure your body has all the vitamins and minerals it needs to be healthy.
Their brand and the multivitamins they sell are built around a commitment to evidence-based products, and continual questioning of the status quo.
This attitude means they are at the forefront of the industry. By challenging long-held assumptions, Ritual foster creativity and ensure their products are the best they can be.
And this work is being led by people a Scientific Advisory Board made up of people highly qualified in relevant fields. People like:
- Dr. Marie Caudill, PhD, RD, Professor of Natural Sciences at Cornell University.
- Dr. Robin Berzin, MD, CEO of a Functional Medicine company.
- Dr. Jordan Shlain, MD, Physician, and Founder of a private Primary Care medical group.
- Dr. Michelle Davenport, PhD, RD, Dietitian and Nutritionist.
- Dr. Jason Rothbart, MD, FACOG, Physician.
- Dr. Blanche Ip, PhD, Assistant Professor in Nutritional Biochemistry at Brown University.
- Dr. Nima Alamdari, PhD, CSO at Ritual.
- Dr. Luke Bucci, PhD, CCN, CNS, VP of R&D at Ritual.
- Dr. Mastaneh Sharafi, PhD, RD, Director of Scientific Affairs at Ritual.
What will Ritual Essential for Women do for your body?
Ritual Essential is designed to be the only multivitamin you’ll ever need.
It is simple, traceable, and optimised for your body: traits which have attracted a large and dedicated following.
Let’s take a look at each of those words:
- Simple: their formula is concise, and each ingredient serves a clearly defined purpose.
- Traceable: the supply chain of each ingredient is available on their website, so you know exactly what’s going into your body. This is more than just lip service, too: Ritual’s approach has received praise from Wired and The New York Times for their transparent approach an industry which can sometimes be anything but.
- Optimised: the ingredients and the quantities they come in are specially tailored for women’s bodies. We’ll cover this in more detail in upcoming sections.
When taken as directed – two capsules together, once a day, morning or night – Ritual Essential will fill the gaps in your diet, and make sure your body gets all the nutrients it needs.
But what does this mean, in real terms?
What differences will you actually notice when taking Ritual Essential?
These are both great questions, and here are a few answers:
- You will have healthier hair.
- You will noticed cleaner skin.
- Your nails will feel stronger.
- You will have plenty of energy.
- Your immune system will be boosted.
- Your blood and organ health will improve.
- Your bones will be stronger.
We’ll drill down a bit deeper into each of the ingredients later in this review, introducing each one and explaining briefly how it contributes to these goals.
It’s worth noting here that Ritual test every batch of their multivitamins for four things: identity, purity, strength, and composition.
By doing this, they can guarantee that the ingredients and effects of each batch match what is on the label.
This testing is carried out in-house, but additional external testing is carried out to check that each batch conforms to the Good Manufacturing Practices set out by the US Food and Drug Administration.
This level of diligence and commitment is a strong vouch for the quality of Ritual Essential multivitamin.
How it works
Ritual have invested a lot of time and effort to make sure that Essential doesn’t fall into the common pitfalls that affect other multivitamins.
Here are some of those features:
- Special capsule design to help prevent nausea.
- Complete absence of animal-based ingredients, meaning it’s suitable for vegans.
- Also free of gluten and any other allergens.
- No GMO ingredients, meaning it’s completely organic.
- No colorants or synthetic filler products, giving you full peace of mind.
Each of these points is a big tick next to Ritual Essential’s name on our list of the best multivitamins for women.
Let’s take a quick look at the special capsule design, as this really is good.
By questioning the status quo of multivitamin delivery, Ritual were able to make some changes for Essential:
- The shell of the capsule is designed to dissolve later in your digestive system, in an area where it will have most impact and have least risk of causing nausea.
- Oily and dry ingredients are separated inside the pill, meaning you can take everything together rather than managing separate pills.
- There are no fillers or additives: just clean ingredients.
- Freshness is guaranteed and maintained by a mint tab in each bottle. This makes the capsules a bit more palatable than some other supplements, and counteracts the ‘ocean’ flavour that algal oil can sometimes have.
It’s these little bits of attention to detail that demonstrate Ritual care about customer satisfaction, and that their products are designed with you in mind.
Ritual Essential – ingredients
One key distinction between good multivitamins – like Ritual Essential – and bad multivitamins, is what’s on their ingredient list.
There are two things to consider here:
- The ingredients list should contain things your body actually needs, rather than just random chemicals.
- The ingredients used should be in forms that your body can actually use.
We’re continually amazed by how many multivitamins have ingredients in forms that your body can’t use efficiently. When this happens, the unused stuff leaves your body via the usual waste channels, rendering the ingredients useless.
Ritual Essential uses nine ingredients, and each is in a bioavailable form. This means your body can use it.
And we mentioned this briefly earlier, but Ritual also show where each of their ingredients came from. We don’t mean a food either: we mean the country and town that each ingredient is sourced.
This is excellent information, as it lets you fully understand the product you’ll be putting in your body.
So, what’s included in Ritual Essential and where does it come from?
Folic acid is a form of folate commonly found in supplements, but around 40% of women can’t metabolise it properly because of a gene variation.
By using “methyltetrahydrofolate”, another form of folate, Ritual Essential is able to sidestep this problem.
Associated with benefits in mood, DNA synthesis, heart health, and brain health.
Each dose of Ritual Essential contains 600mcg of folate.
Most supplements use omega-3 sourced from fish, but Ritual use a form sourced from algae. This means it’s fully vegan.
Associated with benefits in your immune system, heart health, and brain health.
This isn’t found in a lot of multivitamins, so its inclusion is an interesting choice (in a good way!)
Each dose of Ritual Essential contains 330mg of omega-3.
As with folate, Ritual uses the form of B12 that is more easily absorbed: methylcobalamin instead of cyanocobalamin.
Associated with benefits in brain function, nerve function, and energy levels.
Each dose of Ritual Essential contains 8mcg of vitamin B12.
The form of D3 used in Ritual Essential is extracted from lichen, rather than from animal sources. Again, this is different to most supplements, and means the product remains fully vegan.
Associated with healthy bones, healthy immune system, good cognition, and effective calcium absorption.
Each dose of Ritual Essential contains 50mcg of vitamin D3.
The form of iron used – ferrous bisglycinate – is associated with much lower nausea symptoms than other iron forms.
Associated with brain health, good energy levels, and healthy blood.
Each dose of Ritual Essential contains 8mg of iron.
There are several forms of vitamin K2, and Ritual Essential uses the one that lasts longest in your body. This means more time for the beneficial effects to be delivered.
Associated with healthy skin, bones, and heart. This is another ingredient that contributes to the proper storage of calcium in your body.
Each dose of Ritual Essential contains 90mcg of vitamin K2.
Another mineral where the more agreeable form is used. The boron used in other supplements can be quite intense, whereas this food-form boron has been chosen because your body can absorb it more easily.
Associated with healthy bones, joints, and hormone levels.
Each dose of Ritual Essential contains 1mg of boron.
The decision was made to use the form of vitamin E that is seen more often in healthy diets, as this indicates preference by a healthy body.
Associated with good skin, antioxidant effect, and reducing the signs of aging.
Each dose of Ritual Essential contains 6.7mg of vitamin E.
This is a chemical element known for producing an incredibly bright flame when burned, so it may not feel like something your body needs.
However, magnesium is associated with good mood, bone health, and heart health.
Each dose of Ritual Essential contains 30mg of magnesium.
The list may be missing some names that you expected to see – calcium, for example.
But Ritual offer an explanation on their website: “What we leave out is as important as what we put in.Our formulation philosophy is about what you need — and not overwhelming your body with anything extra.”
Calcium is a great example: Ritual found that most women get enough calcium in their diet, and the problem lies in your body not making full use of it. So instead of stuffing in extra calcium, they use four “helper” ingredients – the “unsung heroes”, as they call them – to help your body fully utilise the calcium it already has.
Those helpers are Vitamin D3, Vitamin K2, Magnesium and Boron from the list above.
What customers say about Ritual Essential
Here are some reviews from Ritual users to set the tone:
- “Ritual makes it really easy to remember to take my vitamins”
- “You know what you’re putting in your body and it’s such a great feeling”
- “Everything is sourced with such integrity and responsibility”
Sounds good, right?
There are also a bunch of positive reviews available on neutral review sites like Amazon:
- “No fishy aftertaste at all! Plus they taste like mint so it’s enjoyable to take your vitamins. A little pricey but you get what you pay for. I like that they research what vitamins women should get and respond accordingly.”
- “I am loving these!!”
- “I felt generally a lot better each day”
Hopefully you’ve still got questions.. It’s good to know any supplement inside out before taking it, so here are some common questions we hear about Ritual Essential, and about multivitamins in general.
How long does it take Ritual Essential to start working?
Most people report feeling a difference within 2 weeks, but Ritual make the point that it’s what happening inside that counts.
The water-soluble ingredients start working straight away, while others take longer to have an impact. This is because they must be absorbed into fats inside your body, which can take a while.
Their website says that it should take around 3-4 months for your body to reach its new, healthier internal equilibrium.
Is Ritual safe to take with other multivitamins or supplements?
There is nothing in the ingredient list that stands out as problematic, but we can’t answer this question for you.
The information in this review does not constitute medical advice, so if you are worried about the safety or efficacy of Ritual Essential – whether alone or in combination with other ingredients – please speak to your doctor or another qualified health professional.
Will Ritual affect birth control?
There are no ingredients that will have any impact on birth control.
Can I take Ritual while pregnant or trying to conceive?
Bodies have different needs during pregnancy, and Ritual have created another multivitamin for women in this stage of their life.
Ritual Prenatal is tailored for use “for you and baby, before and during pregnancy”. So if you’re planning to try for a baby, we recommend switching over to this multivitamin.
Can I take this during the menopause?
As above, your body’s needs change during the menopause. For this reason, we recommend talking to a doctor to see whether Ritual Essential is still suitable.
Can men take Ritual?
While the ingredients and formulation are tailored to women, the product is not unsafe for men.
It’s worth noting that it won’t have the right amounts of the stuff you need. Some ingredients you’ll require more, others less.
If you’re particularly keen to take Ritual Essential, check with your doctor first.
Otherwise we have a list of the best multivitamins for men right here.
Anything else I should know?
Sometimes the capsules get knocked during manufacture or transport, and the ingredients inside can mix together. When this happens they can take on a black appearance, but don’t worry: if you see this, the multivitamin is still safe to take.
How much does Ritual Essential cost?
It’s $30 for a month’s supply. Each bottle contains 60 capsules.
This may seem quite high compared to some other multivitamins on the market, but there are good reasons.
While other multivitamins manufacturers prioritise a long shelf life, Ritual make the deliberate decision to ship their products fresh. This means that filler ingredients aren’t used to lengthen the product’s shelf life – and this means more expense.
Choosing quality ingredients made by responsible manufacturers also contributes to the price tag, but in our opinion, this demonstrates excellent value for money.
If you broke down the cost of the constituent ingredients of Ritual Essential, you would pay a lot more than $30 a month (around $1 a day). Their website gives $200 as an estimate for this figure – so although you’re paying more than you would for some other supplements, you’re investing in a high quality product built on solid research.
You can enjoy free shipping on orders too, which means no hidden costs later in the checkout process.
We think this is the best female multivitamin currently available on the market.
This view is based on extensive knowledge of the marketplace, and Ritual tick a whole lot of boxes with this product.
The formula is well researched, intelligent, and tailored to the female physiology. It contains no filler, and the whole package sings quality. A lot of effort has gone into making Ritual Essential stand out from the crowd.
Each ingredient has been chosen to serve a particular need, and to tap into a real gap in diets. Instead of including arbitrary vitamins and minerals, ingredients have been chosen that supplement each other, and help your body to be its strongest.
We feel confident that taking Ritual Essential as directed will help you toward “Your Healthiest Future”, and we think the company’s motto is well chosen.
The fact that Ritual test each batch internally and externally, and that the provenance of each ingredient can be fully traced, is a real strong indicator of the effort and diligence that have gone into this product.
There are tons of reviews from satisfied customers to back all this up, too.
In short, this is a great product. We highly recommend it, and we think you’ll be pleased with the results if you take it as directed.