Relaxium is a sleep supplement that claims it can help users fall asleep faster, sleep longer, and wake up more refreshed. The brand's website claims that the supplement is "clinically studied."
But is Relaxium actually proven to work in clinical studies or is this just a marketing claim? Does the supplement contain research-backed ingredients for improving sleep quality? Does it contain any unhealthy additives? Why was the brand sued? And how do real users rate and describe the effects of Relaxium?
In this article we’ll answer all of these questions and more as we first share our concerns about the clinical research backing Relaxium.
We'll then analyze the ingredients in Relaxium based on medical studies to give our take on whether the supplement is likely to work or if it's a waste of money. We'll share real, unsponsored Relaxium user reviews and explain why the company was sued in 2022.
Questionable Clinical Study on Relaxium
Relaxium claims that their supplement is clinically studied.
However, the "clinical trial" backing their supplement is not published in any peer-reviewed medical or scientific journals like the research we cite on Illuminate Health.
It's just a PDF posted to their website which is sponsored by American Behavioral Research Institute; the same company that manufactures Relaxium.
It's not particularly convincing when a supplement manufacturer sponsors a study proving their own product works, and we recommend that consumers entirely disregard such clinical trials and only consider research published in legitimate journals.
We're not the only ones who find this business practice questionable. According to the Arkansas Times, Relaxium was sued in a class-action lawsuit in 2022 related to false advertising, and has since settled.
The above-linked article documents that Relaxium's own study found that the supplement did not improve sleep.
We consider it a red flag when a brand uses in-house research to make specific health claims, but does Relaxium contain ingredients that can improve sleep? We'll review in the next section.
Relaxium Ingredient Analysis
The ingredients in Relaxium are shown above.
Magnesium has been clinically shown to be effective for sleep, but may be underdosed in Relaxium. A 2021 meta-review of magnesium supplementation for sleep found that it was effective, but the lowest dose in all of the examined studies was 320 milligrams (mg) daily, or 3.2x the amount in Relaxium.
L-tryptophan is an amino acid that can be effective for sleep, but a medical review published in the Journal of Psychiatric Research suggests its effective dose is over 1,000 mg, while the amount in Relaxium is only 500 mg.
GABA is included at a dose of 100 mg. This compound is a neurotransmitter that’s directly involved with sleep function. Clinical research has shown that GABA supplementation can improve sleep duration and reduce nighttime wakefulness, and the dose in Relaxium appears to be at the low end of the effective range.
Chamomile is included at 75 mg, which may be underdosed. A medical review published in the Phytotherapy Research journal analyzed results from six clniical trials on chamomile and sleep, and the typical dosage was around 400 mg.
Passionflower was shown in a 2011 clinical trial to improve sleep quality.
Melatonin is one of the most well-studied natural sleep aids, and as we documented in our review of Dr. Teal's Sleep Spray, it's clinically proven to work. The 5 mg dose in Relaxium is an effective dose.
Overall we consider Relaxium somewhat likely to be effective. While some of the ingredients may be underdosed, it contains several effectively-dosed ingredients for improving sleep quality and duration.
One benefit of this supplement is that it's free of any harmful additive ingredients.
But does the supplement cause side effects? We'll review in the next section.
Does Relaxium Cause Side Effects?
There are no ingredients in Relaxium's formulation that stand out to us as likely to cause side effects.
Melatonin may cause slight daytime drowsiness according to a 2016 medical review.
Valerian may have a slight stimulating effect in a minority of users and cause restlessness according to a 2020 meta-analysis.
The clinical trial on Relaxium funded by the manufacturer that we cited in the first section states the following: "Adverse events reported for Relaxium were drowsiness/sleepiness, headache, uneasy stomach, and waking up during normal sleep patterns."
The percentage of trial participants who experienced these effects does not appear to be reported.
Real Customers Review Relaxium
We consider Amazon to be a better resource for honest customer reviews than a brand's website. Relaxium has been reviewed over 14,000 times on Amazon with an unimpressive average review rating of 3.2 out of 5 stars.
The top positive review from a verified purchaser comes from a user named "Brian J. Le Clair" who claims that Relaxium helped them get off pharmaceutical sleep medication:
"I had been taking an Rx med, zolpidem, for many years in order to sleep...After about a week, I began taking only Relaxium and within a half an hour, my body just naturally falls asleep. I have been enjoying this!"
The top negative review from a verified purchaser is written by a user named "Darice" who claims it caused side effects:
"Finally after several nights of this I took my BP because it felt like my heart was racing. 190/120 pulse 95. Took an extra BP med. After 3 or 4 days of this the light bulb finally went on and I stopped the Relaxium. Stopped waking up in panic. Then the itching stopped along with the leg twitching."
There are a lot of customer complaints about Relaxium on the Better Business Bureau (BBB) website, and there's actually a "Current Alert" about the brand stating that some customers are being billed for an amount much greater than the free trial amount.
A real user shares their complaint about Relaxium overcharging them in this video on the "PissedConsumer" YouTube page:
Where to Buy Relaxium for the Best Price
Relaxium is sold at a variety of online retailers. Here's a price breakdown at the time of updating this article:
Brand website: $44.95 (plus shipping, link)
Walmart: $41.07 (link)
GNC: $29.99 (plus shipping, link)
Amazon: $29.99 (link to official Amazon listing)
We generally avoid purchasing from third-party sellers because the risk of counterfeit product can be higher, and for cost savings of $0.01 it's not worth that risk.
Our Clean Sleep Picks
There are sleep products with clinical research backing for their ability to improve sleep quality.
Bulletproof Sleep is our top sleep supplement pick. It contains an effective dose of melatonin (3 mg), and also passionflower extract which has been shown in a clinical trial to increase total sleep time and decrease wakefulness. This supplement is free of any questionable additive ingredients and only costs $25.
Interested consumers can check out Bulletproof Sleep at this link to its product page on the official brand website.
Nolah Weighted Bamboo Blanket is a great option for consumers who prefer non-supplement solutions for sleep. Weighted blankets are clinically shown to improve sleep quality in both older adults and in children, and early research suggests they may also reduce anxiety.
Interested consumers can check out Nolah Weighted Bamboo Blanket at this link to the product page on the official brand website, where it’s currently retailing for under $100.
Manta Sleep Mask is the most cost-effective sleep solution, because it’s only $35 and will last for years. A 2021 clinical trial found that eye mask and ear plug use improved sleep quality in ICU patients. Manta’s mask comes with ear plugs.
We can't locate any medical studies on sleep mask use in healthy patients, but it seems logical that the same effects would hold given that light exposure during sleep negatively impacts sleep quality.
Interested consumers can check out Manta Sleep Mask at this link to the product page on the official brand website.
Pros and Cons of Relaxium
Here are the pros and cons of Relaxium as a brand in our opinion:
- Contains effective ingredients
- Some active ingredients appear effectively dosed
- Zero unhealthy additive ingredients
- Relatively affordable
- Some active ingredients may be underdosed
- So many complaints about billing practices that BBB has a warning
- Sued over false advertising and settled
- Questionable clinical and health claims
- Unimpressive Amazon reviews