Last updated:

25 July 2023

Here’s my quadrennial round-up of THE BEST whey protein supps according to science.

best whey protein powder according to science

Reading time:

6 min read

Finding a good whey protein supplement can be hard.

Some of them have all the nutritional goodness of a brick, while others taste like a bucketful of chalk.

So to make your search for a good whey protein easy, I compile these lists showing you the top supplements which are currently available. I call it The Russ List, and every product which makes it onto one of these things should be considered the cream of the crop. It updates every four years, like the World Cup.

Are you excited to see this year’s list?

5. Total Protein Blend (Myprotein)

Myprotein Total Protein Blend
best whey protein list

Product Highlights Include:
* 25g protein per serving
* 83% protein-per-serving
* Protein blend (whey protein concentrate, whey protein isolate, hydrolysed whey protein, milk protein concentrate, and micellar casein)
* Good low cost option

This is my recommendation for those who are training on a tighter budget.

The protein blend here consists of FIVE different protein sources, which means it will give you a sustained release of amino acids througout the day and really make the most of those amino acids to help you build more muscle.

Thanks to the endless promotions that Myprotein run on their website you can usually pick up a massive 5kg sack of Total Protein Blend for around £68, which is insane value given how solid this product is.

You can order it here.

4. Pro JYM (JYM Supplement Science)

is Pro JYM the best whey protein supplement
best whey protein list

Product Highlights Include:
* 25g protein per serving
* Perfect protein blend (whey protein isolate, egg, and casein)
* Good option for those who experience digestion issues with whey protein concentrate
* Supreme taste

Many readers would have expected Pro JYM to win this category, but I did warn you that competition was tough!

Pro JYM is as good today as it was when it was first released in 2015. The protein blend here (whey isolate, egg, and casein) is 100% perfect for providing your body with a staggered release of amino acids throughout the day, and their decision to exclude whey protein concentrate in favour of isolate makes it a good choice if you normally experience digestion issues with whey protein supplements.

So what stops it from ranking higher on the list?

Each 37 gram scoop contains 25 grams of protein – that’s just 67% protein-per-serving. That’s because an absolute fuck-tonne of fillers and creamers have been added to improve the taste. Taste is important, but Pro JYM is a very expensive product, so it’s worth knowing that a considerably higher-than-normal chunk of your tub isn’t even protein.

You can order it here.

3. 100% Gold Standard Whey (Optimum Nutrition)

is optimum nutrition gold standard whey the best whey protein supplement?
optimum nutrition gold standard whey review

Product Highlights Include:
* 24g protein per serving
* 76% protein-per-serving
* Protein blend (whey protein isolate and whey protein concentrate)

German manufacturers Optimum Nutrition have been in the supplement game since 1986, and it shows.

Their old school approach to branding made them stand out from their rivals; it’s less bodybuilding and more full-on sports brand like Nike.

Those clever marketing methods helped them to create one of the world’s most popular whey protein supplements; their modern classic 100% Gold Standard Whey.

This thing has sold more units than Eminem.

You don’t get to be that popular unless you’re packing more than just good looks, so once you dig into Gold Standard Whey you’ll get a high quality formula which uses a unique protein blend (whey protein isolate and whey protein concentrate), hardly any filler ingredients (76% protein-per-serving), and a light mixture which tasets excellent even in water.

You can order it here.

2. Primal One (Love Life Supplements)

love life supplements primal one
best whey protein supplements 2020

Product Highlights Include:
* 20g protein per serving
* 12g MCT per serving
* Stacks of additional health benefits thanks to the inclusion of chia seeds, vitamin D3, curcumin, and digestive enzymes
* Perfect for trainees who follow a high protein / high fat diet

This beast from Love Life Supplements is damn near perfect.

In the last five years, this UK-based brand has carved out a reputation for being a company who use only the finest ingredients, with minimal unnecessary fillers (thickeneres, sweeteneres, etc), and Primal One is their best product to date.

Each scoop of will not just give you a decent serving of protein, it’ll feel like it’s giving your body an M.O.T. thanks to the inclusion of excellent ingredients like chia, curcumin and digestive enzymes.

They have also added a whopping 12 grams of MCT powder to each serving, making Primal One a perfect choice fo trainees who follow a high protein / high fat diet (or for anyone who finds it hard to eat enough healthy fats in general). This ingredient is an unusual but great inclusion, as it gives Primal One a very specific niche to target, but it’s ultimately what keeps it off the top spot because, even though the ingredients are high quality, the potential audience for this product is quite limited.

You can order it here.

1. Muscle Matrix (NutraBio)

Nutrabio Muscle Matrix Protein review

Product Highlights Include:
* 25g protein per serving
* 80% protein-per-serving
* High quality protein belnd (whey protein isolate and casein)
* No unnecessary fillers at all
* Completely transparent label with no proprietary blends or hidden doses; NutraBio even have their products tested by a third-party and then publish the results on their website!

NutraBio are head and shoulders above the competition.

Founded in 1996, these guys have been releasing very high quality supplements for a long time without ever really getting the credit for it, while some of their inferior (but fancier) competitors have undoubtedly recorded higher sales figures.

In a way, that’s actually why I created The Russ List – because when we strip away the packaging and popularity, and we take supplements back to just the science and the ingredients, there isn’t another product on the market which can go toe-to-toe with what NutraBio have creted here.

Each scoop of Muscle Matrix gives you 25 grams of protein in the form of a whey protein isolate and casein blend, staggering the release of amino acids to help you build more muscle throughout the day, and it does this with zero unnecessary fillers and an exceptionally low fat and carbohydrate content. It’s as close to perfect as I expect anyone to get.

In more recent years, NutraBio hit the news for the video you can see below. This happened after Jim Stoppani (of JYM fame) unwittingly picked a fight with them, and the professional manner in which CEO Mark Glazier defended his brand only endeared more people to NutraBio.

You can order it here.

The Best Of The Best

what is the best whey protein

So there you have it!

Congratulations to the team at NutraBio for taking home first place in the inaugral Russ List. They’ll be the #1 whey protein supplement until the next edition is published in 2024, at which point we’ll see if anyone has been able to catch them up.

Here are the top 5 whey protein powders in full:

  1. Muscle Matrix (NutraBio)
  2. Primal One (Love Life Supplments)
  3. 100% Gold Standard Whey (Optimum Nutrition)
  4. Pro JYM (JYM Supplement Science)
  5. Total Protein Blend (Myprotein)

>> You may also enjoy: The Russ List 2020: Top 10 Pre Workouts.

Who Is Russ Howe PTI?


Russ has been a personal trainer in the UK since 2002, and provided both training advice and full programs on this website since 2011.

His work has been featured in Men’s Fitness magazine, and the content on this website led to him being voted one of the world’s top 50 fat loss coaches by HuffPost.

Russ’ days are spent coaching men and women in the legendary Powerhouse Gym, and creating new content for the 109,246 followers of his popular free weekly e-mail, which you can join below!

Response to “The Russ List: The Top 5 Whey Protein Powders Of 2020”

  1. Ray avatar

    The shock on my face was REALLLLL when I say Pro Jym isn’t #1! Looks like there are a few good brands I had no idea existed 🙂

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