The Best Multivitamins for Women at Every Stage of Life, According to Nutritionists


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We updated this guide in August 2022 to ensure our dietitian-vetted picks for the best women’s multivitamins assessed by the experts in the Good Housekeeping Institute Nutrition Lab were in stock and correctly priced.


While it’s always best to get your nutrients through food whenever possible, multivitamins can be a great tool when it comes to filling in potential nutrient gaps in your diet. Your body needs a variety of crucial nutrients, including calcium, potassium, magnesium and omega-3s, as well as vitamins A, D, E, C and more. Even if you follow a healthy diet, eating lots of delicious vegetables and fruits, it’s still possible that you may need to supplement some of these nutrients. And issues like allergies, dietary restrictions and medical conditions can further impact how and what you eat, making multivitamins crucial for women who are chronically deficient in key nutrients.

But peruse the vitamin section of your local drug store and you’ll likely start to feel overwhelmed by the crowded supplement landscape. What’s more, the supplement industry itself is poorly regulated, and it’s hard to know which brands and formulations will meet your needs. That’s why our team of registered dietitians within the Good Housekeeping Institute Nutrition Lab pored over hundreds of vitamin supplements to find the best options for a multitude of women.

Our experts consulted the FDA’s Good Manufacturing Practices for supplements and considered only multivitamins that have been tested by a credible third party such as USP, NSF and Consumer Lab, or met the Good Housekeeping Nutrition Lab’s rigorous standards. These steps are designed to help ensure that there are no harmful substances (e.g., lead, which has been found in certain supplements in the past) in the products themselves, and also verifies that what’s in the bottle is what is on the label.

Take note: Our nutrition pros stress that a multivitamin is a supplement and should do just that: supplement the diet, not replace high-quality healthy food. Check with your healthcare provider before starting any dietary supplements.

Our top picks:

Below, the best women’s multivitamins for multiple uses and considerations, all of which meet the quality control standards that may give you confidence in making the right choice for you and your body.

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Best Overall Women’s Multivitamin

MyKind Organics

Organic Women’s Multi Whole Food Multivitamin

Best Value Women’s Multivitamin

Nature Made

Multivitamin Tablets With Vitamin D and Iron

Best Subscription Women’s Multivitamin

Ritual

Essential for Women Multivitamin 18+

Best Multivitamin for Women 50+

Thorne Research

Women’s Multi 50+

Best Vegan Women’s Multivitamin

Seedwell

Vegan & Veggie Multivitamin

Best Prenatal Women’s Multivitamin

MegaFood

Baby & Me 2 Prenatal Multi

Best Postnatal Women’s Multivitamin

MegaFood

Best Postnatal Multivitamin

Best Gummy Women’s Multivitamin

SmartyPants

Daily Adult Gummy Multivitamin

Best Kids’ Multivitamin for Young Girls

SmartyPants

Kids Formula Daily Gummy Multivitamin

How we chose the best multivitamins:

Nutritional experts within the Good Housekeeping Institute evaluated marketing claims and ingredient lists associated with dozens of the best-selling women’s vitamins to pinpoint the best supplements overall. Special consideration was paid to determine products better suited for women over the age of 50 and for soon-to-be mothers, with nutrient intake criteria shifting based on guidelines set by the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists. Our evaluations are based on the supplement’s nutrient content, sourcing methods and manufacturing process, as well as considerations like consumer pricing and availability. Please remember to check with your healthcare provider before starting any dietary supplements.

What to look for when shopping for the best women’s multivitamins:

Ultimately, supplements are just that: additional nutrition from a multivitamin — even the best multivitamins won’t replace the need for a balanced, healthy diet. Try to source a multivitamin that doesn’t exceed 100% of the daily value (DV) for essential vitamins and minerals, especially fat soluble vitamins, including A, E and K, because these may reach toxic levels quickly.

Choosing a multivitamin designed for women exclusively can be a great idea, especially if you’re selecting a product marketed to your age group as well, as manufacturers are likely addressing specific needs women in your age group may have. Multis are often good because they aim to include appropriate amounts as well as the complimentary nutrients that aid in absorption.

And a reminder: Multivitamins aren’t evaluated for safety or efficacy by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, but that doesn’t mean you can’t look for other signs of quality when you’re in the supplement aisle. Try to identify brands that are verified by USP and carry the USP seal, granted by an independent, third-party organization that asserts quality control on multivitamins via purity tests and ingredient fact-checking. Supplements carrying the USP seal have had their ingredient list verified, and have cleared tests for manufacturing contaminants like lead or other heavy metals. Looking for the USP seal can save you from choosing a supplement that is misrepresenting its ingredients. As a 2017 study reveals, multivitamins often contain more of an ingredient than is listed on the label.

Other consumer advocacy organizations like NSF International and ConsumerLab.com also provide testing and verification on some multivitamin products. Shoppers can also turn to the FDA’s Good Manufacturing Practices to weigh their current multivitamin against these standards.

Additional reporting by Jaclyn London, MS, RD, CDN.

Is it good to take a multivitamin every day?

Before you try adopting a daily multivitamin, be sure to continue to optimize your diet to include more nutrient-rich items naturally — a daily vitamin works best when it’s not intended to be a sole source for any given nutrient. Consider maximizing your intake of fiber, antioxidants, minerals and omega-3 fatty acids by loading up on veggies, lean proteins and plant-based proteins as much as possible. Add in fresh fruit, whole grains, nuts, seeds and legumes as well as unsweetened dairy products into your meals when possible before starting a daily multivitamin regimen for best results.

Unlike probiotics, you shouldn’t concern yourself over which time of day to take a multivitamin. When taking multivitamins every day, the healthiest way to do so is to ensure you’re not ingesting your multivitamin on an empty stomach — be sure to take your supplement with food or during a meal to minimize any potential stomach discomfort, and to enhance absorption naturally.

Which multivitamins are best for women over 50?

For those over 50, calcium and vitamin D sourced through diet is often insufficient, and there are other lifestyle factors in play. The combo functions in tandem: Calcium, stored in your bones, is key for cellular function in muscles, nerves and glands, whereas Vitamin D helps to maintain bone density itself and draws calcium within your GI tract and from kidneys. They also tend to contain less iron, because your need for dietary iron goes down after menopause.

One caveat: Since vitamin D is difficult to get from sunshine alone, you and your doctor may decide that in addition to a multivitamin which contains D, you may need a separate Vitamin D supplement as well.

Which multivitamins are best for pregnant women?

You’ll need to discuss your supplement routine with your doctor before your pregnancy gets too far along. Per recommendations made by the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, you should source four nutrients in particular: Folic acid (600mcg), choline (450mg), iodine (220mcg), and iron (27 mg).

Obstetricians have historically stressed the importance of folic acid — which reduces the risk of fetal brain defects during the first trimester — as well as choline, an often overlooked vitamin that supports brain development and lowers the risk of birth defects. Both of these nutrients are found in protein-rich eggs and staples like whole grains, but can still be tricky to get through food alone. Working with your OB/GYN to determine any nutrient holes in your current diet as your pregnancy gets underway can ensure you’re pulling the best supplement for healthy development.

Why trust Good Housekeeping?

While not every product featured in this guide has been personally sampled by our experts, each product and its nutritional information as well as marketing materials, were analyzed by Stefani Sassos, MS, RDN, CSO, CDN, NASM-CPT, the deputy director of the Good Housekeeping Institute Nutrition Lab. Stefani is dedicated to evidence-based diet and nutrition reporting. She takes the pulse of the latest nutrition research and trends, translating to readers what principles are science-backed and worth incorporating into a healthy lifestyle — and what fads are worth avoiding.

In his role as Health Editor, Zee Krstic works hand in hand with nutrition authorities in the Good Housekeeping Institute to evaluate consumer products in the diet and nutrition industry. He fostered a strong background in holistic nutrition early in his career through previous work with a team of registered dietitians at Cooking Light.

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