SARMs101: The Best SARMs Stacking Guide You’ll Ever Need
Tons of guys are now using SARMs for bodybuilding, and lots more women as well. Once you realize that they aren’t like anabolic steroids, they just don’t mess you up as steroids do, then there’s a world of opportunity out there for you to massively bulk up and tone your body. But that’s only true if you can get your hands on the best SARMs to help you achieve your goals.
So what we’re going to do here is take a long look at everything you need to know about using SARMs for bodybuilding. We’re going to cover absolutely everything here, legality, types of SARMs, dosing and taking them, SARMs stacks, post cycle therapy, and side effects to watch out for.
If you’re looking for SARMs stacks, we’re going to go through the best for cutting, bulking, fat loss, strength, and the best female SARMs stack in detail. Plus, you’ll also learn the top four places to buy pure SARMs online. So this is everything you need to know about using SARMs for bodybuilding wrapped up in one powerful package.
What Are SARMs?
SARM stands for Selective Androgen Receptor Modulator. To explain that in simple terms, anabolic steroids send messages to your muscles screaming to them to grow. But it also screams other things as well, the net result of all that being an aggressive growth and set of changes that can be really dangerous.
SARMs don’t just hammer everything with messages. Because they are selective androgen receptor modulators they target the sending and modulating messages only to androgen receptors that specifically deal with muscle and fat, depending on the SARM.
SARMs work then by helping the body to produce androgens in greater quantities that help to build muscle and cut fat, and the result is you pack on massive bulk and get toned real quick. I’m telling you now that one cycle of SARMs will cut fat and bulk you up in a way you’ve never seen before if you’re used to only natural bodybuilding….as long as you put in the hard work.
But it’s important to understand that these are not regulated drugs. Although SARMs are mild in comparison to anabolic steroids, they do come with problems and side effects, which is why it’s important you get educated here.
To wrap this section up, let’s look at the pros and cons of SARMs generally.
Pros of SARMs:
- Safer than anabolic steroids
- Less side effects than anabolic steroids
- Can rapidly and dramatically build muscle
- SARMs can strip fat aggressively
- Can increase energy levels
Cons of SARMs:
- They can still carry significant side effects
- Purity and safety can be a problem
- They are unregulated research chemicals
- SARMs stacks can be expensive
- Testosterone levels can be dramatically decreased
Are SARMs Legal?
Anabolic steroids are definitely not legal, and similarly, prohormones have also now mostly been banned (only the weaker ones that are virtually useless are still legal).
SARMs, on the other hand, are not illegal. But that doesn’t mean they are legal and safe to use. You can create them and sell them, but they are not allowed to be sold for human consumption.
But companies get around this loophole by using statements on their websites to make it clear that SARMs are not FDA regulated, and are only sold as research chemicals.
So don’t get confused about the lack of claims on websites that sell SARMs, the lack of information about SARMs and bodybuilding. It’s just that they aren’t allowed to make claims about that because it’s illegal to sell them for human consumption.
But SARMs are not illegal to use and the only problem you’ve got is that they are unregulated research chemicals, which inherently carry a risk of having not been through clinical studies to test their long-term side effects.
How To Take & Dose SARMs
When it comes to taking SARMs, things are pretty straightforward. You have three choices: loose powder, capsules, or liquid format.
Loose powder is the cheapest, followed by liquid. Capsules are just the powder put into a vegetarian capsule form, like any other medication. But because that process is time-consuming it significantly raises the price, but it does make them easy to dose and very convenient to carry around.
Put together, you’ve got the following choices:
- Loose powder SARMs are the cheapest to buy but the hardest to dose and consume. You will need a micro-scale and they are problematic to use outside the home.
- Capsules are just the powder in capsule form, but removing all the problems around weighing the powder, and having to deal with it. But they are far more expensive.
- SARMs liquid is taken sublingually and is really easy to do. Pricing is only slightly higher than loose powder, but on the downside, it’s difficult to dose SARMs liquid precisely.
So taking SARMs is pretty straightforward, but dosing them is far more problematic.
The big problem is that there are no recommended dosages because these are research chemicals that have never been through clinical trials, and everybody is different. Some guys are whacking high doses with no problem, whereas others will get incredible testosterone suppression and associated side effects at the same dosage level.
So we have to go on anecdotal evidence and personal experience. But the great news is that there have been years of experience now with tens of thousands of users, who are using SARMs for bodybuilding and dosages they use are well documented online.
Every SARM is different, and whereas you might routinely take a daily dose of 30 mg of Ostarine, you wouldn’t want to get anywhere near that level of dose with RAD-140. My best advice here is always to use incremental dosing when you first start out if you are unsure. Start with a low dose, and then you can up it by a few milligrams as you progress. Just be safe and watch what happens to your body.
The Top 5 Most Popular SARMs On The Market
So let’s continue this guide to using SARMs for bodybuilding by talking about the five most popular SARMs out there. These are the ones that the most widely available, usually available in their purest form, and that can safely produce incredible results.
Ostarine is the oldest and mildest of the SARMs available today. It’s also very affordable to buy, and has the flexibility all-round to be a perfect first choice if you are wanting to just experiment with one type initially. It’s definitely one of the best SARMs for cutting significant fat safely.
The key traits of Ostarine (MK-2866) are:
- Has the ability to protect muscle mass even during a calorie deficit
- Great for cutting fat while maintaining your profile and even building muscle
- Very mild and often doesn’t require a post cycle therapy
- Even those suffering from inhibited testosterone levels don’t find it aggressive
- Its short half-life means it’s convenient to dose daily (even twice-daily)
- Perfectly safe in doses up to 50 mg on its own
I’ll just warn you about that Ostarine dosage information though. Although people do take up to 50 mg, that’s when it’s being taken on its own, when the person can tolerate it, and probably when they are using a post cycle therapy (PCT) supplement at the end of the cycle.
A beginner’s dose of Ostarine is far more likely to be between 20-30 mg, dosed twice-daily. But what Ostarine gives you is a great entry point into the world of SARMs that will help you strip fat, maintain muscle, and see how your body responds (especially your testosterone levels).
RAD-140 is one of the more recent developments in the SARMs. It has potent muscle-building effects because it was designed to strongly combat muscle wasting illnesses. On the downside though, it does suffer from a lack of research and real-world data because it’s more modern.
The key things you need to know about Testolone (RAD-140) are:
- Very potent selective androgen receptor modulator
- Doses need to be kept very low (15 mg is considered extreme)
- Strongly inhibits testosterone production
- Has a stronger anabolic effect in the body than testosterone
- Short half-life means dosing daily or even twice daily
- Muscle gains using RAD-140 can be incredible in just one cycle
Just to reiterate, RAD-140 is a very powerful chemical. Far stronger than human testosterone, it’s interaction in the body will really suppress you, and quickly. Low doses are vital, watching the signs of side effects is crucial, and a beginner dose should be as low as 4 mg per day.
LGD-4033 is another great cutting SARM. You’ll shed a lot of fat using this, especially if you stack it with Ostarine, but you’ll still protect muscle gains. So just like Ostarine, it’s classed as one of the best SARMs for cutting fat.
But it’s important to note here that it’s far more potent, at least 10 times more powerful than the original Ostarine SARM.
But put together, Lingadrol has the following key characteristics:
- Great for stripping significant amounts of fat rapidly
- Doses of around 10 mg or lower are typical
- Can be very suppressive
- Works slightly differently to most other SARMs
- Longer half-life means dosing daily or bi-daily
The key point I want to make here is that it’s suppressive in several ways. Because of its mechanism of action, it suppresses a system in the body called HPTA (hypothalamus, pituitary gland, gonadal gland). This is a key trio that helps with our reproductive and immune systems, so you have to be careful using this SARM.
Cardarine isn’t actually a SARM at all, but it gets grouped with them because it can still help the body to build lean muscle more rapidly than naturally. Cardarine works as a PPAR-Delta modulator, which means that it increases the activity of protein receptors in the body that deal with glucose levels. This directly impacts muscle growth.
The key traits and benefits of Cardarine are:
- Can dramatically build lean muscle growth
- Does not impact on testosterone levels
- Protein synthesis related to energy levels means more energy in the gym
- Doses need to be kept low to stop side effects
Doses as low as 7 mg are typical initially. Although you can ramp these up to as high as 20 mg and beyond, because it’s not hormonal, because of the way it can alter glucose levels, it should be used with great respect.
This is a difficult one to clarify. Although it’s mostly classified amongst SARMs, scientifically, that is open to debate.
YK-11 is actually closer to an anabolic steroid in its mechanism of action that it is to be a selective androgen receptor modulator. So this is incredibly powerful for building muscles, it has a strong androgen effect in the body.
YK-11 characteristics are:
- A low dose of around 5 mg is plenty
- Can strongly impact muscle growth in a short space of time
- As close to an anabolic steroid as you can get without taking one
- Can have very strong testosterone suppressing side effects
- Half-life and metabolism are still unresearched
- Not for beginners
So YK-11 is a very potent muscle builder, but it’s very aggressive, anabolic in nature and needs to be treated with a high level of respect, which is why dosing has to be low, and PCT aggressive.
How To Use SARMs Stacks
So now we have looked at the most popular individual SARMs for bodybuilding let’s take a look at where you can get the real power from SARMs, in stacking them. Stacking them just means taking multiple SARMs at the same time, to create a stronger effect, or to create multiple effects at once, for example bulking and cutting simultaneously (recomping).
Note that doses are almost always far lower when you are stacking. Think about it, the total dose of SARMs is going to be higher overall, which can obviously create stronger side effects and suppress testosterone more aggressively.
SARMs For Cutting
If you’re looking for a really aggressive fat cutting stack then this is undoubtedly the best SARMs Stack for cutting out there. Tried and trusted, with minimal side effects as long as you are responsible:
- Ostarine dosed at 10 mg x 2 weeks, then 20 mg x 4 weeks
- Cardarine dosed at 10 mg x 2 weeks, then 30 mg x 4 weeks
- Andarine dosed at 10 mg x 2 weeks, then 20 mg x 4 weeks
- Six week cycle followed by four weeks PCT
- You will need a PCT supplement (probably mild)
Putting all that together, you’ve got the cutting and maintenance of Ostarine, combined with the energy and power boosts of Cardarine, alongside Andarine which also boosts energy and performance, plus still builds muscle.
SARMs For Bulking
The best SARMs Stack for bulking is undoubtedly this potent combination:
- MK-677 dosed at 10 mg for six weeks
- RAD-140 dosed at 10 mg x 2 weeks, then 15 mg x 4 weeks
- YK-11 dosed at 10 mg x 2 weeks, then 15 mg x 4 weeks
- Six week cycle followed by four weeks PCT
- Will strongly suppress testosterone
Put together, this is a potent bulking stack. You will gain incredible lean muscle in just one cycle of six weeks, as long as you do the hard work and back it up with a great diet as well.
But you do have to watch out for side effects. This is an incredibly suppressive bulking stack. You may even need to take a PCT on cycle if you start to feel testosterone suppressive symptoms strongly.
SARMs For Fat Loss
If you just want a pure fat cutting machine, then this is a potent SARMs Stack that you can use. A variation of the cutting stack, with the S-4 removed, this is undoubtedly a combination of the best SARMs for weight loss:
- Ostarine dosed at 20 mg x 2 weeks, then 30 mg x 4 weeks
- Cardarine dosed at 15 mg x 2 weeks, then 30 mg x 4 weeks
- Eight week cycle followed by four weeks PCT
- You will probably need a PCT supplement (but not always)
So as you can see this is a very basic stack, that is a variation of the cutting stack. What’s happening here is the doses are increased, and the duration of the cycle has lengthened from six weeks to 8 weeks, giving you longer to strip significant fat (5% or more total body fat loss is totally achievable).
SARMs For Strength
Strength is crucial, especially initially. A lot of people go for a fat cutting stack first, then a strength stack, before moving on to increasing doses of a powerful bulking stack over several cycles.
This potent yet tolerable stack is definitely one of the best SARMs stacks for the strength you can put together:
- LGD-4033 dosed at 10 mg
- GW-501516 dosed at 10 mg
- YK-11 dosed at 10 mg
- Six week cycle then four weeks PCT
- Always use a PCT supplement
I am being a little conservative with the dosing of this strength stack. Note that you could put 5 mg on each of those doses, but you will have to really watch out for suppression if you do.
Best SARMs For Women
SARMs are often seen as something only men can use, but women can also benefit. They also get the added bonus that they don’t suffer from testosterone suppression in the way that men do.
The best SARMs that the females will build energy, strip fat, tone, but not pack on large amounts of lean muscle, keeping that feminine look. Put together, these are the best SARMs for weight loss in one incredible stack:
- LGD-4033 dosed at 5 mg every other day
- MK-2866 Ostarine dosed at 10 mg per day
- S4 Andarine dosed at 10 mg every other day
- Eight week cycle followed by a four-week break
- No PCT supplement required
Note that women won’t need to dose SARMs daily in the way that men do. But the problem you do have to watch out for is masculinization. Higher doses can change the way the female body receptors work, which can lead to a deepening of the voice, and masculine traits like higher sex drive.
Post Cycle Therapy (PCT) For SARMs & Side Effects
You will definitely need to use a PCT supplement if you feel the symptoms of testosterone suppression. The main symptoms of testosterone suppression during and after a SARMs cycle are:
- Feeling blue/depressed
- Not having high energy/feeling exhausted
- Low sex drive and fertility levels
- Brain fog and an inability to think quickly
- Lack of confidence and drive
- Physical symptoms such as the development of breast tissue
- Potential hair loss
Some SARMs are more aggressive than others, and low doses of SARMs may mean you don’t have to use a PCT supplement at all.
I would always make sure you have one to hand just in case though. Nolvadex is the mildest and most popular, while Clomid should be to hand if you are using more potent SARMs, or if you feel a dramatic drop in testosterone levels.
Although it’s perfectly okay to take a PCT supplement on cycle, if you’re feeling the drop, it might be better to stop the cycle. If you develop breast tissue this isn’t going away, so is always better to be conservative rather than push on through and create long-term health issues.
Where To Buy Real SARMs
So let’s finish this guide to the best SARMs for bodybuilding and how to use them by telling you where you can actually buy pure SARMs. That’s actually easier said than done, and getting pure SARMs that aren’t poor quality or dangerous is tough.
The following four companies all have a strong reputation for quality guaranteed SARMs. They produce third-party independent lab test reports to show the purity of each batch, they have moneyback guarantees, and a strong track record online.
These are companies who people talk about when they show those SARMs before and after photos in personal reviews of SARMs.
Just make sure you take those SARMs before and after photos with a pinch of salt though. You need to do tons of work and have an excellent diet over several cycles to get to where those guys are. Be realistic, but by working hard you can achieve incredible results for the long term, as long as you are sensible in the beginning.
If you’re looking for exceptional quality SARMs then this is definitely one of the first places you should look. Every single batch is independently lab tested, and those reports are published on the website. This stuff is pure, all the SARMs they sell (and it’s every type out there) is pure and safe.
There are 12 different types available, including SARMs I’ve never heard of such as AC-262, although I’d be very wary of trying SARMs that aren’t tested out in the real world thoroughly.
Let’s take S-4 Andarine as an example here, and it’s one I’ve used from these guys. A dropper bottle at a concentration of 50 mg/mL costs just $80. That’s an exceptional value, especially when you getting free worldwide shipping as well.
To get 10% OFF use this code: gyula10
Another place that sells all the major types of SARMs, backed up by lab purity reports that are third-party and verifiable, is proven peptides. There are a moneyback guarantee and free shipping on orders over $99. But better than all that, is the purity of the SARMs they sell.
But it’s not just the purity, it’s the pricing. To give you an example, LGD-4033 available is a 30 mL dropper bottle, will give you a concentration of 10 mg/mL for just $59.99.
Third on the list of the places I use, and definitely a great place to start with experimenting with SARMs individually or stacked is SARMS 4 YOU.
These are based in the EU. So they’re going to be the best place to get your hands on pure SARMs if you live in Europe. Again, you get free shipping on orders over €130, and again, that crucial purity guarantee on every product they have for sale.
Something to point out though is they only sell capsules, powder. They don’t sell sublingual liquid dropper bottles. The pricing is good though, with 80 capsules, each dosing 10 mg of Ostarine costing just €50 (around $60).
UPDATE: Both Proven Peptides and SARMs4You are out of business.
Last on the list of high-quality SARMs for bodybuilding is Swiss Chems. Don’t get confused, this company is based in the USA, not Switzerland. Prices can be a little higher, but purity is great. They are the only company on the list to sell injectable SARMs in liquid form, but I wouldn’t really advise that unless you know what you are doing.
Apart from the injectable liquids, they don’t sell sublingual dropper bottles. They do sell capsules though, which is why the pricing is a little higher. As an example of price, from Swiss Chems 38 capsules, each of 10 mg will cost you $85.95. But if you pay with BTC that price drops dramatically to just $68.
Again, you’ll get quality guarantees, a full moneyback guarantee, and free shipping on your order from Swiss Chems stop.
Frequently Asked Questions
What do SARMs do in your body
Some SARMs are anabolic. That means they raise levels of testosterone. Testosterone is crucial to muscle development, determination, and strength. Some classic SARMs that are anabolic include Ostarine (only at high doses) RAD-140 and S-23. Other SARMs work in the body differently though, and in fact, are not Selective Androgen Receptor Modulators at all (they do not affect testosterone). MK-677 raises levels of IGF-1, the crucial non-steroidal hormone that drives muscle development. Then you have GW-501516, which regulates PPAR proteins, leading to an increase in the use of glucose for energy and muscle building.
Do SARMs need PCT
To answer the question around do SARMs need PCT we need to break that question down. The truth is that some SARMs do require a PCT supplement, while others don’t. Also it’s possible to take SARMs that are suppressive to testosterone and not get the drop if the doses are small. It all depends on the SARMs you are taking, the total dose, and how your body reacts. Some SARMs don’t drop testosterone levels at all, as they are not anabolic in construction.
MK-677 and GW-501516 will not suppress testosterone levels at all. At the other end of the scale, S-23, RAD-140, and LGD-4033 can be highly suppressive, but it will depend on total individual (or stacked) dosage.
What are the best SARMs to stack
You can stack any SARMs. It really depends on whether you want to bulk, cut, or create a maintenance stack that bulks and cuts at the same time. You shouldn’t stack too many anabolic SARMs together because you will create significant testosterone level drops which can cause bad side effects.
Ostarine is great to stack because it maintains muscle and cuts fat even in a calorie deficit. YK-11 is also good because it’s not very androgenic, yet helps to harden and retain muscle definition alongside strength. Either of these are fantastic to then stack with something like GW-501516 for strength and stamina, or something like RAD-140 for building significant lean muscle.
How to take liquid SARMs orally
Liquid SARMs are brilliant because they are really easy to take. They will come in a sublingual dropper bottle. You simply squeeze the top of the bottle and the dropper tube will fill up with SARMs liquid. You will then squeeze the dropper bottle top gently and dispense the required number of drops under your tongue. Let it settle for a moment and then swallow. Each drip from the dropper will be a regulated amount, you will know the dose you are taking by the number of drops, really easy to do.
Can you take SARMs on a plane?
It could obviously be risky to take SARMs on a plane. If your luggage is inspected and they find either liquid, powder, or capsules, it could raise suspicions. You could be upfront and just leave the SARMs in the labeled bottles you bought them in. The only problem with that really comes if there is a language barrier, or SARMs are illegal in the country you are entering. An alternative is simply to dispense SARMs capsules into a multivitamin container, powder into some sort of dietary supplement container like whey protein, and for sublingual liquid, dispense it into a clean sublingual bottle for another purpose, such as eye drops.
Do SARMs damage your liver?
There is no concrete evidence that SARMs damage your liver. However, prolonged use has led to individuals having worsening cholesterol profiles, and an increase in liver enzymes. Both of these are potential signs of liver damage starting to occur. There have been isolated cases, profiled in studies, where young and fit men have presented at the emergency room with liver problems, and SARMs have been found in their bodies.
But that does not mean the SARMs caused the damage. However, there is circumstantial evidence that SARMs could damage your liver over the long term, depending on the dose you take, and the SARMs you take. It’s always best to take the minimum dose possible, and have gaps between cycles as long as the cycle itself. Also, make sure you have regular breaks of at least one month to give your liver time to recover.
What are the best SARMs for muscle gain?
The best SARMs for muscle gains are those which are truly anabolic. This means S-23, RAD-140, LGD-4033, and S-4. There are other anabolic androgenic SARMs, but those are the main ones which drive massive muscle gains through increasing testosterone levels. However, GW-501516 can also lead to dramatic muscle gains despite its main mechanism of action being to increase available glucose levels, making it brilliant for increasing strength and stamina. But glucose also feeds muscle development.
Which SARM is best for cutting?
Ostarine is the most well-known of the SARMs that help to cut fat, by telling the body to burn fat before muscle in a calorie deficit.
However, Ostarine is not the most potent. LGD-4033 Ligandrol is also very good, but it will build muscle as well. You could try S-4 Andarine instead of Ostarine, it’s slightly more potent but very similar in chemical structure.
To be honest, the best SARMs for cutting are stacked. Ostarine or Andarine stacked with Cardarine or Stenabolic to build your energy levels is perfect for burning fat and protecting your muscle tone.
What is the safest SARM?
It depends on what you mean by “safe”. At small doses, any of them are safe, and at high doses, you are still that little risk as long as you are using PCT supplements.
Some SARMs aren’t even anabolic in the mechanism of action at all, and therefore don’t have androgenic impacts in the male body. SR-9009, GW-501516, and MK-677 are three examples of SARMs which are not androgenic in nature at all.
So safety depends on how far you want to push things really. Ostarine is the mildest at reasonable doses. However, although it’s great for protecting muscle in a calorie deficit, you won’t put on additional lean muscle using it.
Are SARMs banned in the military?
SARMs are not banned in the military. They are not tested for, and in fact, if you’re looking for exceptionally strong and fit military personnel, then SARMs can help you to cut fat and lose weight, and build strength and endurance. However, it’s not encouraged.
In the USA, anabolic steroids are tested for sometimes, but only usually with suspicion. Steroids can induce anger and aggression which can put individuals and their colleagues at risk. However, SARMs are not routinely looked for, and you would have to be incredibly obvious and overt about it to arouse any sort of interest to provoke your commanding officer into requesting a SARMs drug test.
That varies in militaries around the world. In the UK for example, a Freedom of information letter from the Ministry of Defense confirmed that the UK military will sometimes check personnel for anything listed within the UK misuse of drugs act. However, SARMs are not listed in that act.
How long can SARMs be detected in urine?
Most SARMs have a very short half-life, meaning that even if you are taking them regularly on cycle if you stop, you should be clean in around 10 days.
S-4 and S-23 are unknown to have a shorter half-life than average, and you could be undetectable for their use in as little as five days.
However, that only covers some of the androgenic SARMs, and some of the non-anabolic SARMs may be slightly different. To be on the safe side, you wouldn’t want to be taking a drug test specifically looking for SARMs if you have used them in the past 14 days.
What is the most powerful SARM?
When we are talking about the most powerful SARMs, it depends on whether we are talking about bulking or cutting.
For bulking, RAD-140 and S-23 are generally accepted to be the most androgenic SARMs out there. However, YK-11 is a lesser-known one it’s not androgenic in nature, but structurally is very close to an anabolic steroid but without the general side effects, so for some people, that’s the most powerful SARM.
In terms of cutting, good doses of Andarine or Ligandrol are potent, and for an increase in energy output endurance, Cardarine and Stenabolic are incredibly powerful.
Who sells legit SARMs
There aren’t many places that sell high-quality legit SARMs. However, three that are proven through ongoing positive feedback online, and who all provide independent lab test reports to show 100% purity of the SARMs they sell are science.bio, sarms4you.com, and provenpeptides.com.