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If you're looking to optimize your nutrient intake or help ensure you're ingesting enough vitamins and minerals each day, adding the right multivitamin can help you cover your bases. Though multivitamins are especially beneficial for women who are pregnant or looking to conceive, women following vegan diets, or picky eaters, many other women can benefit from taking a multivitamin daily—or for shorter periods of time, like if you're traveling frequently or experiencing high levels of stress.
However, the efficacy of multivitamins will depend on the product, consistency of consumption, and what your individual goals are.
Meet the Expert
• Brigid Titgemeier is a functional nutrition dietitian, graduate school instructor, and functional medicine patient. She has worked with nearly four thousand patients in her own business and as a founding dietitian of the Cleveland Clinic Center for Functional Medicine.
What to Look for in a Multivitamin for Women
This is one of the best indications that you’re choosing a quality multivitamin, says Brigid Titgemeier, functional medicine registered dietitian and founder of My Food is Health. “There are companies that conduct third-party testing to assess the ingredient quality, consistency of product label, freshness, and more. They then give supplements their seal of approval to indicate it meets their standards,” she explains. A few to look for: ConsumerLab.com, NSF International, Informed-Choice, and US Pharmacopeial Convention (USP).
Consider your age
According to Titgemeir, there are generally three stages of adulthood for women that need to be considered when choosing a multivitamin: regular menstruation, pregnancy, and post-menopause. Your nutrient needs will vary greatly based on the stage you’re in, particularly when it comes to things such as iron, folate, and calcium. To that point, it’s always best to chat through your particular needs with your doctor when choosing a multivitamin.
Along with the nutrients offered, Titgemeir says to look at the other ingredients in the vitamin (technical term: excipients) as well. These will be listed as “other ingredients” on the ingredient panel, she says, and it’s important to make sure that they align with your dietary needs and preferences. For example, if you’re a vegetarian, you’ll want to avoid supplements with gelatin; if you have an allergy to soy, you’ll want to make sure there’s no soybean oil in the formula.
Read on to learn more about the best multivitamins for women.
Best Overall: Pure Encapsulations O.N.E. Multivitamin
One serving is just one capsule
Gluten-free, non-GMO, and hypoallergenic
Does not contain iron
Has a distinct odor/taste
This product—which contains important vitamins and minerals like choline, inositol, lycopene, vitamin D, lutein, and zeaxanthin—is designed to support healthy cognitive function, cellular health, and eye health. In addition to these potent nutrients, one serving contains over 100% of the recommended daily intake of folate in its most bioavailable form. Do note, though, that this supplement doesn't contain iron, so vegans, vegetarians, or pregnant women might need to choose an additional (or different) supplement.
Type: Capsules | Age Range: Teens and adults | Dosage: Once daily | Certified: Non-GMO, gluten-free, hypoallergenic
Best Budget: Bayer One A Day Women’s Petites Multivitamin
Gluten, artificial flavors and artificial sweetener free
Two tablets per serving
At less than ten cents per tablet, Bayer’s One A Day Women’s Petites multivitamin is our top pick for a budget multivitamin. One container includes 80 servings and is priced at around $10. Featuring key nutrients such as vitamins A, B6, C, D, and E, plus folic acid, calcium, and iron, this is a great choice for women at any age in life. We also love that this product is free of artificial flavors, colors, and artificial sweeteners.
Type: Tablets | Age Range: Teens and adults | Dosage: Two daily | Certified: Free of shellfish, dairy, soy, and egg.
Best Vegan: Innate Response Formulas Women’s One Daily, Multivitamin
Free of pesticides and herbicides
Whole food-based supplement
Contains less iron, only 44% of daily value
We know pesticides and harsh chemicals can make their way into food, but what about supplements? Innate Response is one of the first companies to guarantee that its products are free of any residue of glyphosate, an herbicide that can kill certain weeds and grasses. Vegans and plant-based eaters can not only feel good about consuming a product that is aligned with their values but can be sure they're getting a big bang for their buck by choosing a product that is glyphosate-free. In addition to glyphosate, each batch of ingredients is tested for over 125 different pesticides and herbicides.
Type: Tablet | Age Range: Teens and adults | Dosage: Once daily | Certified: Non-GMO, glyphosate residue-free, B corporation, certified kosher, free of gluten, magnesium stearate, dairy, and soy
Best Prenatal: Klaire Labs Prenatal & Nursing Formula
Contains active form of folate and methyl B12
Contains chelated iron
Serving size is 3 capsules per day
For women looking to conceive, the safety and efficacy of supplements are super important. Klaire Labs Prenatal and Nursing Formula Supplement is a top choice because it provides absorbable forms of the key nutrients that are needed by pregnant and nursing women. Free of milk/casein, eggs, fish, shellfish, peanuts, and wheat, this product is ideal for women looking to avoid common allergens as well as those looking to avoid artificial colors, flavors, or preservatives.
Type: Capsules | Age Range: Women 18+ | Dosage: 3 capsules per day | Certified: Free of milk/casein, eggs, fish, shellfish, peanuts, wheat, and gluten
Best Over 50: SmartyPants Multivitamin for Women 50+
Contains Omega-3 DHA
No synthetic colors, flavors, or sweeteners
Free of the eight most common allergens
Calcium is not included
As women age, it's important for them to consume adequate amounts of bone-supporting nutrients like calcium and vitamin D. Smarty Pants Women’s 50+ Multi is jam-packed with these types of nutrients and more—like vegetarian omega-3 DHA, vitamin C, B6, zinc, vitamin D3, vitamin B12, and folate—which work together to support the health of your brain, heart, and immune system. Plus, free of milk, eggs, fish, shellfish, soy, wheat, peanuts, and tree nuts this is an excellent choice for those with dietary restrictions.
Type: Capsules | Age Range: Women 50+ | Dosage: Once daily | Certified: Gluten-free, non-GMO, free of common allergens
Best Gummy: Olly The Perfect Women's Multi
Only 2 grams of sugar per serving
No synthetic colors, flavors, or sweeteners
Iron is not included
Does not appear to be non-GMO
Olly’s gummy vitamins for women provide 18 essential nutrients for overall wellness. Ideal for picky eaters or for those that have a hard time swallowing pills, this product is a great way to support your nutrient intake if your diet is less than perfect. These chewable vitamins come in a Blissful Berry flavor that is made with no artificial colors, flavors and is gluten-free. There are 90 gummies per bottle which is a 45-day supply. As a bonus, we love that there are only 2 grams of sugar per serving.
Type: Gummies | Age Range: Women 18+ | Dosage: 2 gummies per day | Certified: B corporation, NSF certified ingredients, gluten-free
Best with Iron: Rainbow Light Prenatal One Multivitamin
Serving size is only one tablet
Contains 27 milligrams of iron
Contains soy, wheat, and milk traces
Although this product is technically a prenatal vitamin, any woman of childbearing age can take a prenatal multivitamin and benefit from the breadth and potency of its nutrients. This one is particularly great for anyone who wants to add iron to their diet, as it contains 27 milligrams per serving. Plus, unlike many prenatal vitamins that require multiple tablets per dose, you get everything you need in one tablet, here. FYI: When taking a supplement that contains iron, do not take it with coffee, tea, bran, or milk, as this can affect absorption.
Type: Tablet | Age Range: Women 18+ | Dosage: Once daily | Certified: Non-GMO, raw, clean, vegetarian, gluten-free
Best with Probiotics: Sakara The Foundation
Free of GMOs, pesticides, herbicides and gluten
Clean, plant-based, medical grade, and doctor-formulated
Serving size is six pills
Best for delicious and beautiful plant-based meals, Sakara now offers shoppers another way to nourish themselves from the inside out via Sakara Rx: The Foundation. One purchase contains 30 days' worth of supplements. Buyers are instructed to take one packet, which includes six pills, with breakfast or lunch (and plenty of water). Each packet includes two superfood multivitamins, one macro-mineral (a blend of calcium and magnesium), one algae omega (an alternative to fish oil, this sources omega-3 fatty acids from algae), one adaptogenic B complex (a blend of B vitamins and ashwagandha), and one probiotic formula.
Type: Tablet, capsule, and soft gels | Age Range: Women 18+ | Dosage: One packet daily (6 pills) | Certified: Non-GMO, plant-based, gluten-free
Best Organic: Garden of Life mykind Organics Women's Once Daily Multi
USDA organic-certified product
Activated form of Vitamin B12
Only 14% of your daily intake of iron
Mykind Organics' women’s once-daily multivitamin is specially formulated from nutritious and organic whole foods. Each once-a-day pill provides 15 vitamins and minerals including activated forms of vitamin B12. This product is also certified organic and is vegan, gluten-free, non-GMO, and free of synthetic binders and fillers.
Type: Tablet | Age Range: Women 18+ | Dosage: Once daily | Certified: Non-GMO, USDA Organic, vegan, NSF gluten-free, kosher
Best with Folic Acid: Thorne Research Basic Prenatal
Metabolically active folic acid used
Tested for 760 contaminants
Serving size is 3 capsules
For women of child-bearing age or women who are already pregnant, consuming adequate folate is necessary for optimal health. Meeting the recommended intake of folate may also be helpful for women that struggle with depression. Thorne’s Basic Prenatal contains 1,000 micrograms of metabolically active folic acid, 283% of the recommended daily intake for folate. Once again, you can absolutely take a prenatal regardless of whether or not you are actively trying to conceive.
Type: Capsules | Age Range: Women 18+ | Dosage: 3 capsules per day | Certified: Gluten-free, dairy-free, soy-free, artificial flavor-free, NSF
Best for Athletes: Country Life Coenzyme B-Complex with Methylfolate
Contains metabolically active folic acid
Includes PABA, phosphatidylcholine, inositol, and alpha-lipoic acid
Simply put, Country Life’s Coenzyme B-Complex is an all-star supplement. What makes this product stand out among the rest is the use of Quatrefolic, a metabolized form of folate that bypasses many conversion steps in the body so that it can be used more quickly. In addition to containing the eight B vitamins, each serving of this supplement features alpha-lipoic acid, an antioxidant that helps cells utilize glucose for fuel—which is especially helpful if you're active.
Type: Capsules | Age Range: Teens and adults | Dosage: 2 capsules per day | Certified: Vegan, kosher, B corporation, gluten-free
Best for Hair: MegaFood Skin, Nails & Hair 2
Can be taken on an empty stomach
High biotin may only be beneficial to those with deficiencies
Looking for a trusted source of nutrients to support hair, skin, and nail health? Megafood is one of the original companies to use whole food sources for their supplements and keep harsh chemicals out of their bottles. Two plant-based tablets contain vitamins A, C, E, and B6, biotin, zinc, and selenium, as well as carrots, organic oranges, organic brown rice, and organic nettle leaf. Overall, this formula strives to nourish and support a healthy complexion, nails, and hair.
Type: Tablets | Age Range: Women 18+ | Dosage: 2 tablets per day | Certified: Non-GMO Project, free of gluten, dairy, soy, B corporation, glyphosate residue-free, kosher
Best for Bone Health: Garden of Life Living Calcium Advanced
Serving size is six caplets
Garden of Life’s Living Calcium contains 1000 milligrams of calcium per serving, along with nourishing nutrients such as vitamin D, vitamin K, zinc, copper, and B vitamins—a combination that supports the various interactions that lead to bone growth, formation, and repair. Also, this supplement is vegetarian-friendly, as it is made with nutrients derived from plant-based sources.
Type: Caplets | Age Range: Teens and adults | Dosage: 6 caplets per day | Certified: Soy-free, gluten-free, non-GMO, kosher, B-corporation, NSF
We love Pure Encapsulations O.N.E Multivitamin because it packs tons of vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants into a reasonable single-capsule serving. In addition to nutrient variety and serving size, this product puts purity, quality, and potency at the forefront of production. If you're in the market for an extra-affordable multivitamin for women, you can't go wrong with Bayer’s One A Day Women’s Petites multivitamin.
Meet the Expert
Brooke Alpert, MS, RD, CDN, a New York-based nutritionist, Certified Holistic Cannabis Practitioner, founder of Daily Habit CBD, and author.
Are multivitamins good for pregnant women?
When it comes to pregnancy, nationally recognized nutritionist and best-selling author Brooke Alpert says that multivitamins are good for pregnant women, “but there are specific ones for pregnant women that focus on the most important nutrients." With that said, if you’re pregnant, she recommends choosing a high-quality prenatal vitamin over a regular women’s multivitamin.
How many multivitamins should be taken per day?
When it comes to how many multivitamins you should take per day, Alpert says that it fully depends on the brand and formula. “There isn’t one stock answer,” she says. Some formulas may require just one pill a day, while others may be broken up into multiple pills taken at different times throughout the day. That said, it’s important to thoroughly read through directions (as well as consult your doctor) rather than guess what dosage is best.
Are gummy vitamins less effective?
In terms of efficacy, Alpert says gummy vitamins aren’t any more or less potent than pills or capsules. “The most important thing with vitamins is to make sure they are the ones you will remember to take and can comfortably tolerate,” she says. Just be aware that, while not any less effective, some gummy formulas contain high amounts of sugar, so thoroughly read through the inactive ingredient list of a product before making a purchase.
Why Trust Byrdie
As a registered dietitian, Sydney Greene takes supplement recommendations seriously. Every product has been researched and vetted by her against clinical research, product reviews, and third-party testing websites. These are products she would not only feel comfortable recommending to her clients but she would take them herself if needed.
According to our Diversity Pledge, 15% of products in our newly-published market roundups will feature Black-owned and/or Black-founded brands. At the time of publishing, we were not able to find any multivitamins from a Black-owned and/or Black-founded business. If you know of one we should consider, please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org and we will evaluate the product ASAP.