Andarine (S4) Overview – Cycle, Side Effects & Stacks

Andarine, aka S4, is one of the weirdest SARMs on the market. It will make your muscles hard and lean, but in exchange - it will turn your whole world yellow. How to take it, what side effects you can expect, and why are there no reasons to be afraid of Andarine - read in this guide.


Andarine is a classic SARM – Selective Androgen Receptors Modulator. It was made in the US by GTX inc., the guys that brought us Ostarine (aka Enobosarm). In the development stage, Andarine was meant to cure muscle wasting diseases, counter prostate enlargement, burn fat, and help people with osteoporosis.

How Andarine Works 

S4 does not affect your whole hormonal system but goes selectively to your muscle tissue. It’s the only place where it will give you the intended effects. It binds to androgenic receptors in the cellular core and commands them to grow. It is a non-steroidal substance, as we know from its structure, but it is still anabolic. 

Technically, Andarine is weaker than LGD-4033, MK-677, or RAD-140. It’s hard to compare them directly, though. 

Andarine is neither a bulker, not a cutter. It’s a polishing compound with muscle hardening as the most notable effect. 

S4 Andarine Benefits 

First of all, you should know that Andarine is not approved for human use yet. The trials are just underway. You won’t get an official recipe for Andarine in the nearest future, but we already have many anecdotal reports on the benefits. 

Muscle Hardening 

In medical terms, it’s «muscle structure improvement». Andarine has been proven to be an excellent tool for it. Practically, this is what you get: 

  • Shredded look; 
  • Muscles get harder to the touch; 
  • Increased vascularity (more visible veins); 
  • Leaner physique in general. 

Don’t expect the effect to be visible if you have over 12% body fat. Your 6-pack will still get tougher, but your round, wobbly, hairy belly will make it practically useless. 

Muscle Growth 

Andarine, again, is NOT a bulking compound. It won’t give you the «wow» effect you would typically expect from an experimental SARM. 

Don’t get me wrong, you WILL get bigger muscle – Andarine IS anabolic. It’s just notably weaker than other options. Use it as a stage-ready body polishing gear instead. Non-steroidal and mildly suppressive nature make it a great compound to run after a hardcore AAS blast. 

Energy Boost 

In about an hour after the administration, you get the right mindset: You want to lift bigger weights because fuck them, and sweat your ass with extra reps because you can. The feeling of being «fully charged» makes you crave a hardcore, full-flexing workout. 

The effect is dose-dependent and works not every time. When you get used to the feeling, especially if you’re an experienced athlete, it just gets less impressive. I still can guarantee that you won’t lay on the couch after an Andarine dose. You sure can try, but you just won’t want to. 

How To Take Andarine 

Like all SARMs, it’s oral. S4 comes in pills and drops. With both, you should be careful in dosing. Depending on your source, the amount of active substance in one pill or a drop may vary. 

However, the most crucial thing with Andarine is not the administration way. It’s timing. 

When To Take Andarine 

Andarine half-life is just about 6 hours. Yes, that’s one quick-acting substance. To maintain a significant level of Andarine in your blood, you should split your daily dose into parts. Most experienced athletes recommend to brake it in halves, but you can stick with three parts as well.

You start to feel the effects of the Andarine boost in an hour after the administration, so I’d recommend taking a slightly bigger dose before your workout. 

Other parts – the ones you will take in the morning and late in the evening – are meant just to keep it in your body. 

Andarine Dosage 

Since we don’t have any direct official instructions, we have to rely on anecdotal experience here. 

Your sweet spot with Andarine is most likely between 20 and 80mg every day. 

20mg is a weak dose for a male body, but some athletes are super-responders, so I’ll leave it here as a starting point. Doses over 80mg are guaranteed to give you severe side effects and mess up your cholesterol, so it’s a no-go zone for most. 

Keep in mind that Andarine is one of the weakest compounds of its kind. Why would you abuse something that limited in action when you can switch to other, more powerful options? 

Andarine Female Dosage 

Female athletes should never take over 20-25mg ED if they want to stay female athletes. Anything over that amount will trigger the virilization process. Expect all the classic consequences: 

  • Voice deepening; 
  • Male pattern balding; 
  • Facial structure changes; 
  • Clitoris enlargement; 
  • Nervousness. 

We have enough male athletes around. Please, stay moderate in your cycle and don’t turn into a parody on yet another one. 20mg ED, cut in halves, will be totally sufficient. No need for the extra risk. 

Andarine S4 Cycle 

Now, to the most practical part. I recommend to start with a low dose, so you can jump off quickly if the side effects will be unbearable for you. A short half-life grants you a rare chance to get rid of any effects in a single day. Here is how a perfect first Andarine male cycle can look like: 

WeekS4 AndarineNolvadex PCT
125mg ED (12,5mg twice a day)
235mg ED (15mg in the morning and 20mg before the workout)
350mg ED (in 2 administrations, 25mg each)
450mg ED (in 2 administrations, 25mg each)
Stay on this medium dose for a while, to make sure that other factors don’t strip you from all the progress. Check your sleep schedule, stress levels, diet and the relation between them with the compound you take.
550mg ED (15mg in the morning, 20mg before the workout, and 15mg in the evening)
Still no effects? Try to play with the timing and the splitting.
6-760-80mg ED

If you can go on this dose with no serious vision effects, give Andarine the last chance. If it does not work, just drop it and switch to other gear. Your body seems to respond badly to the compound.
8-920-40mg ED

There are no strict rules so that you can play with every aspect of the cycle. Just don’t forget about the PCT – it’s the most critical part of any cycle. 

Yes, you need PCT even if Andarine didn’t work for you. 

Best Andarine S4 Stacks 

There is just one thing that seems to be a synergetic addition to Andarine. It’s Cardarine. Both are mild and mostly meant for polishing and cutting. This is what a cycle would look like: 

WeekAndarineCardarineNolvadex PCT
1-825-50mg ED20mg ED
Weeks 9-1020-40mg ED
Weeks 11-122040mg ED (if needed)

I believe it’s mostly useless to add S4 Andarine to a hardcore cutting or bulking cycle, because you’re not a damn professional taster, and bodybuilding is not a french cuisine. A dose of Andarine in your Mk-677 and RAD-140 cycle (not to mention classic anabolic steroids) won’t make any difference. You literally won’t notice any additional benefits, just the side effects. It’s not tarragon, and you’re not making a Béarnaise sauce – mix things according to their power.

Andarine Side Effects 

While Andarine is mild in the best meaning, the compound still has a bunch of side effects.


It’s a dry SARM, so hair shedding is exactly what you should expect from it. Not instant balding, as some people claim, but more of a hair and follicles health decrease. 

Don’t use any concentrated shampoos or hair conditioners on Andarine – it will make things even worse. 

Cholesterol Issues

Expect the classic misbalance. Good HDL cholesterol goes down and increases your risk of getting a heart attack, bad LDL cholesterol goes up, the risk of clogs in your blood flow gets higher, and so on. Almost all performance enhancement compounds damage your liver. The good news is, if you are not going to abuse Andarine, it will take less than a week to get back on track and regain liver health. 

Testosterone Suppression 

With enough dedication to overdosing, Andarine can even shut down. Let me remind you why Testosterone suppression is such a bad thing. Practically, you can get: 

  • Stamina decrease; 
  • Lower libido; 
  • Sleep issues (such as insomnia, low energy in the morning, or both); 
  • Lower energy in general; 
  • More challenging concentration and attention blur. 

Testosterone Suppression turns you into a Duracell or Energizer battery-powered bunny, but without the battery: a pink, plushy, useless piece of depression. Here is what you can do to avoid it:  

  1. Go for the PCT – a classic mild Nolva 20mg ED for two weeks will do after a medium length cycle; 
  2. Use a proper Testosterone base to keep your levels up with exogenous hormones (again – with mandatory PCT afterward); 
  3. Run Andarine in mild doses only – suppression is strictly dose-dependent.

Finally, we can finally look at the side effect that all athletes bring up when Andarine S4 is mentioned. The notorious yellow-tinted vision. 

S4 Andarine Yellow Vision Tint 

This is – hands down – one of the weirdest side effects in the gear world. Vision fuckery is the reason athletes are literally scared to take Andarine. While I totally understand them, I also know that multiple layers of pure bullshit surround the issue. Let me bust it quickly: 

Unfortunately, most people really get it, and some are scared to the point they drop the cycle immediately. This is what you can experience in the worst possible case: 

  • Car lights on the road at night will irritate you so hard that you’ll uncontrollably squint – even on a highway on full speed; 
  • Direct sunlight will irritate your eyes as well – brace yourself for sunny days; 
  • Entering a well-lit room from a dark one will be a bigger problem than you ever thought it could be;
  • Things will get blurry in the dark, and no glasses will help; 
  • You will miss at least a couple of minutes in the morning until your eyes get used to the light. 

Oh, and finally: 

  • You will literally see yellowish stuff.

That’s in no way an exaggeration. On Andarine, everything is yellow. A plain dark room looks yellow, darkness itself is yellow, blue skies and green grass turn yellow, a white piece of paper is banana-colored, and so on. The effect would be fun if it was JUST a color tint. Unfortunately, It’s more like a yellow tint AND significantly lower light tolerance in general. 

The power of the effect depends on your personal response to the compound.

Now, how scary the effect really is? The answer is up to you. I believe that any vision fuckery is terrifying, but it’s not the worst possible side effect in existence (unless you’re a nightshift truck driver, of course). 

Personal Opinion 

Andarine brings a little irony and fun to the gear world:

When inexperienced athletes hear about the «yellow-tinted vision» among side effects of S4, they turn the «Oh fuck, I’m outta here» mode on. And what happens when they suddenly get scared for their health? They dive into more powerful gear with «invisible» side effects! They happily run towards a risk of getting cancer, raisin-sized balls, erectile dysfunction, moobs, and so on. You know, the «safer» stuff. Who cares that most of these side effects can turn chronic and fuck your whole life up in a month? If you can’t see it, it’s not there. That’s seriously the most popular, but a plain dumb approach. 

What would be the right one? First of all, acknowledge that ALL gear has terrible side effects. A controllable, temporary vision fuckery is not worse than other, possibly life-long ones. Your vision is not more important than your prostate health – it’s just more notable. 

With all that taken to account – weigh all pros and cons on a cold head. Is Andarine suitable for your cycle? Isn’t it too weak for you? Are you lean enough to see the effects? Are there any other, more suitable options? In case the stars line up – go for it. Get yourself sunglasses and enjoy the yellow tint – it’s honestly the weirdest thing you can get from any gear.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here