Prolab N-Large II
I used to not bother with Protein supplements because I didn't have the cash and I always figured that milk and meat would give me the same results but I was wrong. This is my very favorite supplement for the very simple reason that it works and it gives me great results every single time! It claims to taste "incredible" and it's certainly the best tasting protein shake I've ever tasted. It's cheap, working out at about $1.30 per serving (if you buy a 10lb tub).
My favorite flavor is chocolate, but I've also tried Vanilla and that was pretty nice as well. It's got loads of other things in it too. I don't know what any of them do, but it's good to know that they're there :-) If you need a protein supplement, check this one out first! Oh, by the way, if you live in the UK, ASDA have just started producing their own protein and weight gain powders. They taste OK and come in small servings - great for filling in time until your proper stuff comes.
Met-Rx nutrition bars are probably the best tasting bars I've had, but I don't usually buy them. Don't get me wrong - they're great, especially at school, but most teenagers just don't have the money for them. If you've got the cash, definitely buy these. Oh and by the way, always check the nutritional value first because some of these so called "protein" bars are nothing but glorified candy bars with 50% sugar and 50% saturated fat in them.
Higher Power Creatine
Creatine is, without doubt, the best supplement (apart from protein supplements) ever to hit the bodybuilding world. It increases muscle size and strength, dramatically in some cases. I recommend loading for a week, staying on for 6 weeks, having two weeks off altogether, and then reloading and repeating the cycle.
HMB (beta-hydroxy beta-methylbutyrate)
I've not tried this myself, although I have ordered some and it's on its way, but a few mates of mine have tried it and said that it works really well when stacked with Creatine. I'm definitely going to give this one a go, and I'll post my results when I do.
I don't like the rub on oils and gels as they don't give a very realistic tan. The bronzers work OK but they wash off and it can get very expensive. Also, you can have problems if you want to go swimming. The best bet is to go out in the sun or on a sunbed, but unless you own a sunbed, they can be expensive or you might not be able to get near one (like me). Also, in some places (like here in the UK) there is not much sun and so it can be hard to get a proper tan. These tanning pills (the Canthaxanthin ones) look pretty good. A bloke at my gym said they work really good but can turn your palms orange if you take too many. Apart from that, I've not heard of any adverse effects so I am going to give them a try (the ASN ones). I'll post my results.
Prohormone Supplements (e.g. 19-Nor, 4 and 5 diol, andro, etc.)
Although for older bodybuilders (21+) these supplements can have great effects, as Big Red and many others have told us time and time again, Prohormones are not good news. I know that some people reading this will go ahead and buy the things anyway, so all I have to say is this. If you do decide to take them, do plenty of research first.
The E/C/A Stack
The E/C/A (Ephedrine/Caffeine/Aspirin) stack is NOT my favorite supplement. Taking just one capsule per day of Dymetradine Xtreme from AST Sports Science gives me a horrible jittery feeling that lasts all day. It says on the packet that you should take 2 caps per day to test your resistance to it. I might just be really sensitive to the stuff, but I don't recommend buying the stuff with the large doses in each tablet, because then you can't cut the dose. I'd say stay away from this stuff, but as long as you eat and drink plenty whilst you're on the stuff, I think you can safely take it.
Multivitamins are one of my favorite supplements simply because they work, they are cheap, and they are safe. However, a lot of people ignore this supplement because its effect cannot be seen immediately. I'd say buy a tub of one per day multivitamins and take one every day (obviously). It's well worth the small amount of money it will cost you, as it will keep you healthy and help you to grow because your body will have all the vitamins it needs.
A Note About "Cutting Gel"
You know - the Epidril Gel stuff that everyone's talking about. They sell it on Bodybuilding.com as "transdermal muscle defining compound!" I told mydoctor about this cutting gel and, although at first he seemed to think that it would reduce body fat (but he said to be careful about cholesterol) after he looked at the ingredients, he decided that the effects would really be minimal. In the interest of bodybuilding, I have ordered a bottle of the stuff and I'll be testing it.
Look out for my next article!