Best energy drink for an all-nighter? (with no sleep)

best energy drink for an all-nighter

Whether its finals, due dates, exams or deadlines, we have all been subjected to the dreaded task of pulling an all-nighter, which isn’t an easy task.

Most of the time while pulling an all-nighter, before you make it to sunrise, you’re already half asleep or become highly unproductive.

The key contributing factor here would be the lack of focus.

If you’re thinking of fueling yourself with energy drinks to get through the night – that might be a good idea depending on which one you choose.

Let’s take a look at the most important criteria in deciding which energy drink is the best option to help you make it through the night.

Energy drinks for an all-nighter: What matters?

A row of different energy drinks
With so many energy drink brands to choose from, how do you decide which is best?

• Caffeine content

In my opinion, energy drinks that contain between 50 and 100mg of caffeine per serve are ideal for pulling an all-nighter.

More than 100mg of caffeine is too much for me. I tend to get jittery, restless and unable to concentrate on the task at hand.

Sure, I might be wide awake, but sometimes energy drinks with less caffeine are better for focus.

Especially if combined with some other energy-boosting ingredients, energy drinks with a sensible amount of caffeine can be more appropriate in helping you to pull an all-nighter.

As a result, I will try to avoid energy drinks such as Bang due to it having a whopping 300mg of caffeine per serving. You can read more about my review of Bang energy drink and its health concerns here.

However, most energy drinks such as Red Bull, Rockstar and Monster energy drinks are sensible options with regard to the caffeine content.

If you feel that you might be addicted to caffeine, you should read my article on caffeine withdrawal to help you to diagnose and overcome it.

• Sugar content

The second most important criteria that you should consider when pulling an all-nighter is the sugar content in an energy drink.

Generally speaking, energy drinks with lower sugar levels are better for pulling an all-nighter than those with sugar.

Energy drinks that contain tons of sugar might be great at giving you a quick energy boost, however, those effects are generally short-lived.

A few hours after consumption, you may experience reactive hypoglycemia which is also known as a sugar crash. A sugar crash definitely won’t help you stay awake all night.

Therefore, I would recommend going for sugar-free versions of energy drinks such as Red Bull Total Zero, REIZE Energy Drink or Monster Zero Ultra.

• Price

Many energy drinks are relatively expensive, ranging between $2 and $3 each. Some are even more expensive than that, depending on where you buy them and what brand you choose.

However, not all energy drinks will break the bank. There are some affordable options that are very good quality.

Powdered energy drinks are usually (but not always) more affordable than ready-to-drink energy drinks that come in cans.

For these energy drink powders, just add water and you’ve got a delicious and fresh energy drink when you need it.

While we’re on the subject of price, why spend more than you need to? Just because something is more expensive, that doesn’t mean that it’s better quality and vice-versa.

Affordable energy drinks like REIZE are simply great value and don’t compromise on quality.

Do energy drinks help you stay up all night?

Yes, energy drinks do help you to stay up all night. 

Energy drinks contain caffeine and other ingredients that can help you to stay awake. Energy drinks are not the only drinks that contain caffeine, but the caffeine content in energy drinks is one of the most important energy boosting ingredients that make them effective at helping you to stay up at night.

Many energy drink brands will try to convince you that their “special blend” of ingredients is the reason that it’s so effective at giving you an energy boost. This is marketing fluff that you shouldn’t fall for.

The fact is, if you removed caffeine from their list of ingredients, their energy drink wouldn’t be very effective at giving you an energy boost anymore.

The best energy drinks for an all-nighter

To save you the time and effort, I’ve tried and tested many energy drinks and come up with a list of the best energy drinks for an all-nighter.

Note that these energy drinks are not ranked in any order, I just think they are all worth a look if you’re planning on trying to go all night.

With that out of the way, let me introduce you to the best energy drinks for an all-nighter…

• Bang Energy Drink

Best energy drink for an all nighter bang energy
If you’re thinking about skipping sleeping, Bang might be just the drink for the job. Be careful though, with this much caffeine you might skip sleep and then some.

      • Caffeine content: 300mg
      • Sugar content: 0g
      • Price: about $2.20 per 16 fl.oz can

With 300mg of caffeine, Bang Energy is one of the strongest energy drinks on the market. It contains a ridiculously high amount of caffeine which will definitely help you stay awake.

A can of Bang usually costs about $2.20, which isn’t all that expensive considering most of the big brand energy drinks cost between $2 and $3.

The best part of Bang is that it doesn’t contain any sugar.

What this means for you is that you won’t have to experience a dreadful sugar crash after drinking one in the middle of the night.

Also, due to the high caffeine content, just one drink is enough to keep you awake all night.

However, I must note that I find Bang overpowering because of its off-the-charts caffeine level. I find it almost impossible to concentrate when I’ve had that much caffeine.

Bang definitely contains more caffeine than I like to to have in my caffeinated drinks, but sometimes desperate times call for desperate measures, and a can of Bang might work for you.

However, keep in mind that the recommended daily limit of caffeine is 400mg according to the FDA.

Therefore, I recommend that you don’t drink more than one can of Bang per day, otherwise, you’ll be well over that limit. This might lead to several other side effects which are well-documented.

Bang isn’t without its fair share of controversy though. You might find my other article that tackles the question of whether Bang energy drink is bad for you interesting.

• Red Bull

Red Bull was banned in France
Did you know that Red Bull was once banned in France?

• Caffeine content: 80mg
• Sugar content: 27g
• Price: about $2 per 8.4 fl.oz can

With 80mg of caffeine in a can of Red Bull energy drink, it gives you a nice energy boost to get you through the night.

At about $2 per can, it isn’t all that expensive either.

However, regular Red Bull has 27g of sugar per 8.4 fl.oz can, which I personally consider to be a bit much.

But, there are alternatives to this provided by Red Bull. Red Bull has sugar-free versions such as Red Bull Total Zero, which has the same contents except with no sugar.

I personally think that Red Bull sugar-free is much better for an all-nighter than the regular Red Bull.

Since Red Bull sugar-free versions contain no sugar, there is no potential for you to experience a sugar crash, which is great. Therefore you can stay awake for much longer without experiencing any decline in your overall energy levels.

It’s a great energy drink and one of my personal favs whenever I need to pull an all-nighter to study for my exams.

If you’re thinking about making Red Bull a consistent part of your diet, check out my other article where I cover what happens when you drink Red Bull every day.

• Monster

Best energy drink for an all-nighter Monster energy
Monster is available almost everywhere and many people drink it everyday

• Caffeine content: 160mg
• Sugar content: 54g
• Price: about $3.20 per 16 fl.oz can

Monster energy drink is known for its epically cool logo– the claw mark that actually is the letter M (my favorite energy drink logo)

A single can of this green beast contains 160mg of caffeine. Because of this high caffeine content, it will give you more than enough kick to get through the night.

Although Monster has twice as much caffeine as Red Bull, when compared on a per-fluid-ounce basis they are almost identical.

If you want to see all of the differences between Monster and Red Bull I’ve covered everything you need to know on the subject in my other article.

If you’re thinking about getting Monster to pull an all-nighter, I suggest that you go for the sugar-free version instead of the regular version.

There are a couple of sugar-free versions from Monster such as Absolute zero and Zero Ultra that you can check out and see if they work for you.

The main reason for me recommending the sugar-free version is because the regular version of Monster contains an absurdly high and frankly ridiculous 54g of sugar in a single can. YES in one can.

That’s more than the recommended 25-37.5g of sugar per day set by the American Heart Association. One can of regular Monster will completely shatter your daily sugar limit.

Unlike the regular version of Monster, the sugar-free versions don’t contain any sugar which is great for your health and energy levels.

At around $3.20 per drink, Monster energy isn’t the most affordable option to pull out an all-nighter.

However, if taste if something that’s important to you, Monster energy has many different flavors to choose from. You’re sure to find one that suits your preferences.

If you think about it that way, $3.20 is a small price to pay to get an energy drink that suits your taste buds.

However, it may not be the best energy drink if you are concerned about your health. To get the full picture on whether Monster is bad for you or not, check out my other article where I tackle the topic in detail.

• Mountain Dew Kickstart

Mountain Dew Kick started poured to a cup
Can this energy drink by Mountain Dew satisfy your all-nighters?

• Caffeine content: 92mg
• Sugar content: 20g
• Price: about $2 per 16 fl.oz can

The energy drink by Mountain Dew. A single can of this bad boy contains 92mg of caffeine which is much lower than the daily limit of 400mg, but a little more than in a can of Red Bull.

However, the downside of Mountain Dew Kickstart is that it contains quite a lot of sugar.

You may experience nasty sugar crashes a couple of hours after drinking it.

If you’re a big fan of Mountain Dew this is definitely the drink for you as I think it tastes pretty good.

REIZE Energy Drink

Caffeine content: 50mg
Sugar content: Zero
Price: about $1 per drink (including shipping to your door)

Unlike most well-known energy drinks, REIZE is a powdered energy drink that comes in a sachet. Mix the powder with water and viola – instant energy when you need it.

The great thing about coming in powdered form is that you save quite a lot of space instead of those bulkier and heavier cans that can be a pain to carry around.

At 50mg of caffeine per drink, REIZE contains just enough caffeine to keep you awake without all the negative side-effects of excessive caffeine.

The combination of caffeine, taurine, B group vitamins and ginseng work together to give you a perfect energy boost.

Plus its also sugar-free which is great for pulling out an all-nighter without affecting your health or worrying about a sugar crash.

Not to mention, REIZE only costs you about $1 per drink (including shipping right to your door) which is awesome value for money compared to the other brands listed above.

There’s no doubt that REIZE is a very affordable energy drink and might just be perfect for an all-nighter.

Tips and tricks to pull an all-nighter

If you’re thinking of pulling an all-nighter, you need to plan and make sure that you have the right supplies for it.

The following tips and tricks will help you skip sleep much easier.

• Time it wisely

Pulling an all-nighter when you have work or something on the next day is never a good idea.

Instead, plan ahead and pull an all-nighter when you’ve got nothing important going on the next day so you can just recuperate and catch up on the lost sleep.

This way your body won’t feel as fatigued and will function much more efficiently.

• Grab some caffeine (but stay away from it first)

Caffeine is obviously your secret weapon when it comes to staying up through the night.

While energy drinks aren’t the only caffeinated beverages out there, they are a good option if you want to get some caffeine. Energy drinks will also help you to concentrate if you choose one that doesn’t contain too much caffeine.

The trick is to avoid drinking energy drinks during the day leading up to your all-nighter. Part of the reason for this is so that you don’t exceed the recommended daily limit of caffeine consumption. Another is so that the caffeine has the maximum possible affect on you at night when you need it most.

Caffeine takes about 45 minutes to be completely absorbed by your body. This is when the effects of caffeine are at their highest. If you’re thinking of drinking energy drink during the night it’s best to consume them at least half an hour in advance before you need a boost.

Practically speaking, I recommend trying to go as long as you can survive without caffeine and then having some when you feel you’re starting to fade. If you choose an energy drink with a lot of caffeine, you may only be able to have one in a night.

If you choose one with a more sensible amount of caffeine you might be able to have two in a night, spreading your energy boost more evenly across time instead of having a big hit all at once.

• Take a pre-nap beforehand

Best energy drink for an all nighter
Taking a quick-nap before you start your all-nighter can help you pull through.

One of the keys to successfully pulling an all-nighter is to take a quick-nap right before you start your all-night marathon session.

Taking at least an hour and a half of nap can help you to better stay awake for your all-nighter.

This is because that’s the sweet spot for length of sleep that takes you through a full cycle of sleep and snaps you out of it when you’re in REM mode, allowing you to avoid the dreadful sleep inertia.

What this means is that you won’t feel as tired or lethargic when you wake up from the nap. Instead, you will feel refreshed and energized which in turn will help you focus much better and longer.

• Get up and start moving

Short periods of light exercise are a great way to help you to stay awake as you’re pulling an all-nighter.

The effects of light exercise on your brain and productivity levels can’t be ignored.

Similar to the way that you may notice that you feel great after working out, you will feel much better in terms of mood and energy levels if you take regular breaks during the night to do a short spurt of exercise.

However, you don’t want to exhaust yourself with a high-intensity workout. Instead, whenever you’re feeling tired during your all-nighter session just do something that gets the blood flowing to your brain.

You can go for a quick walk, or perhaps try doing a couple of pushups or jumping jacks for 30 seconds. All of these are great to help get you through the night.

Be forewarned that if anyone sees you doing pushups beside your desk at 3:30am they are going to think that you’re a weirdo!

• Avoid carbs before your all-nighter

You should avoid having carb-heavy foods like pasta when pulling an all-nighter.

Having carb-loaded meals is bad if you’re trying to stay up all night.

This is because carb-heavy meals can lead to an energy crash, which is exactly what you want to avoid. If you’re wondering why that’s the case, it’s because carbohydrates, like sugar, cause your blood sugar levels to initially rise, but then fall.

They will basically give you a temporary jolt of energy, which is then followed by a plunge in your insulin levels, which will cause you to feel fatigued and weak.

Sorry, that also means no pizza even though it fits nicely into the stereotype of late night living.

• Learn from your experiences

All-nighters are never fun, they rob you out of the good rest that you actually need and leave you feeling like death the next day.

The next time you think it’s a good idea to procrastinate and wait till the last minute to get things done, think twice.

Learn from these painful experiences and make the effort to plan your workload ahead of time and avoid procrastinating till the very last minute next time.

If you’re looking ways to stop pushing things to the very last minute, I’ve found a great article on how you can stop procrastinating.

Other energy drinks that you can consider

Although they’re not what I consider to be the best, these are a few other options that you can consider getting to help your all nighter:

Ready-to-drink, liquid based energy drinks


XS energy

Powdered energy drinks

They tend to be much more convenient and affordable than most of the top energy drinks.



Advocare Spark

• REIZE (10 out of 10)

Of course, there are other caffeinated products that you can turn to to keep you awake throughout the night too. Something like Make it Mio immediately comes to mind. It’s a water enhancer formulated to flavor your water and give you an energy boost at the same time.

There’s also caffeine pills like Vivarin, which is much quicker and easier to take, but doesn’t come with the great energizing taste or other great ingredients found in energy drinks.


REIZE Energy Drink is very convenient.
REIZE energy drink is the best option for an all-nighter in my opinion.

I think there is a clear winner if you want an energy drink to help with your all-nighters.

With 50 mg of caffeine, REIZE has the perfect amount of caffeine to nicely boost your energy levels without overdoing it. You will feel refreshed, energized and be focused for longer during your all-nighter.

REIZE contains caffeine, taurine, ginseng and B group vitamins which combine perfectly to provide you with an ideal energy boost to get through the night. The lack of sugar ensures that you won’t suffer a sugar crash after drinking it.

As a student, the most attractive thing for me about REIZE is that it’s really affordable. For around $1 per drink, you can get REIZE delivered right to your doorstep. That’s including shipping.

No need to go to the store to buy it and it’s around half the price of the other brands on this list? Count me in!

Give REIZE a try today and you might just also find that it’s the best energy drink for an all-nighter.

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Marty Spargo

I started my own energy drink brand in 2014 and am passionate about educating people about energy drinks so that they can properly understand the ingredients, benefits and risks without being influenced by the marketing messages put out by some brands. You can read my full bio here.

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