No Fear Sugar Free Super Energy Supplement (Big Lots)

A stock image of No Fear Sugar Free Super Energy Supplement, from Big Lots
Misleading title: I was still terrified of heights after drinking a can.

Unlike other products that are generally “one and done”, these seem to pop up from time to time at Big Lots stores. I generally avoid them, mainly because the tacky “edgy” graphics are annoying and don’t appeal to me whatsoever, but our local store had been out of energy drinks the last few times I’d gone, and so I felt like I had some making up to do.

Even before I bought one, I was faced with one of my biggest pet peeves: Packaging that gives you no clue as to what the hell the product inside is supposed to taste like. Sorry, but I don’t think a lack of fear has a default flavor, so I hate not knowing what to expect going in. Normally, I just assume it’s going to be a standard energy drink flavor, but oftentimes that isn’t the case. Is it really that hard to summarize the taste SOMEWHERE on the packaging? I’ve noticed this seems to happen with a lot of Big Lots beverages, and I’m wondering if that’s one of the common themes: People don’t buy shit they know nothing about. Let that be a lesson to all you future entrepreneurs and manufacturers.

Anyway, I’ve thankfully done the legwork for you, and my limited palate can tell you the flavor reminds me of standard energy drink blended with raspberry. It even has a dullish pink color that seems to corroborate these thoughts, as well as a strong fruity scent once cracked open. Surprisingly, there is some “fruit juice” in here, but it’s only listed as “for color”, and nowhere does it specify what the percentage is, leading me to believe it’s probably less than 2%.

As dumb as the graphics and “No Fear” label are, this is actually a pretty decent drink, especially for the price ($.50). It does finish more with the standard energy drink flavor, so there’s a bit of weird aftertaste that lingers for a while afterwards, but it’s not all that off-putting compared to others. The fruitiness also provides a welcome change from the norm, with the sparkle of the carbonation making it feel refreshing…paired up with the “standard” flavor, it prevents things from being too sweet, so there’s a great balance on the tastebuds.

Also a plus: it’s sugar free, which eliminates most, if not all, of the typical crash after the energy rush wears off. It did give me a noticeable kick for a little while, which is all I ask of my energy beverages, so I can’t complain in that regard at all. Caffeine content is pretty weak for a drink of its type (140 mg per can…many of the name brands have a minimum of 160), so if you’re looking for something strong, this definitely ain’t it. It’s a good little beverage, but aside from a little fruity kick, doesn’t have much to distinguish it from the rest of its competition.

Overall: 6.5/10. This has a nice fruity flavor (that I think is raspberry, but I might be way off base) that finishes with a more standard energy drink taste: as far as combinations go, it’s pretty good, with the finishing taste preventing the fruitiness from being too sweet, and the fruitiness preventing it from being too standard and boring. It does have that annoying aftertaste prevalent in a lot of “standard” energy drinks, though, which lingers on for a while. Caffeine content is also pretty weak, at 140 mg per can (most of the name brands have at least 160 in them). The main draw here is the price tag: $.50 at Big Lots stores, which makes it a great value, though I would hesitate before spending anything more than that (even a dollar would be pushing it). Overall, it’s just different enough to be acceptable. I wouldn’t be against getting it again in the future.