Is there a better time of year than January to start taking vitamins? It’s like the ultimate resolution cliche, and usually lasts about as long as those daily workouts you (I) swore you’d (I’d) commit to. The problem with vitamins, aside from not providing any form of instant gratification, is that they’re cumbersome. There are so many options, and how do you even know which one’s you’re supposed to be taking, really? The whole process gets old quickly, and I have an entire shelf in my kitchen of abandoned bottles to prove it.

It takes more than making something pretty to get people committed to a product these days, especially when said product is in an already dull market. Well-packaged vitamins are great, but I have plenty of those sitting unused next to the unattractively packaged vitamins. What products need is a good story. And since vitamins are the ultimate skeptic product, they need a really good story.

The first thing I notice about Ritual Vitamins when I open the package is how fun they are. Each clear capsule has a combination of tiny spheres suspended next to a gelatinous-y liquid mixture, like some middle school science experiment. They look like a notch up from your regular vitamin, sure, but I’ve read enough to know that the vitamin industry is virtually unregulated by the FDA, so despite their chic appearance, I resign to do some due diligence before I start them. Ritual CEO Katerina Schneider had that same instinct before she began taking vitamins during her first pregnancy, and her findings were alarming, in large part due to the high amount of additional (read: unwanted) ingredients many of the usual off-the-shelf vitamins contain. Thus came the mission for Ritual: create a multi-vitamin with nine of only the most essential ingredients, all sourced in their most effective forms. In company’s words, everything you need, nothing you don’t, all for $30 a month. “Luxury at a fair price,” according to Schneider.

Each pill contains, Omega-3, K2, D3, B12, E, boron, iron, folate and magnesium, all nutrients the brand says most women aren’t getting enough of on their own. Together, they supposedly protect skin, improve your mood, maintain energy and fight aging. If you dig a little deeper on their website, each ingredient is impressively broken down to show you:
– How much of each ingredient is in every capsule
– Where they source the ingredient from
– What each ingredient is supposed to do for you
– What other vitamins the ingredient works together within the capsule to boost your benefits
– What foods each ingredient is found in
– Six top studies selected by their scientists to back up their research

The good looks intrigued me, the thorough backstory sold me, and to date, I’m halfway through the bottle. Are they working? I think the best answer is, they’re not not working. I don’t feel more sluggish than usual, my skin is looking a-ok, and I haven’t been particularly grumpy. If nothing else, they’re keeping me at my base level, which I’d take over the alternative, at least for now. Vitamins, it seems, are like most things in life- a marathon, not a sprint.


Greyson Tarantino