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Expert Review: Shine+ Focus Drink

Shine+ has been developed with ingredients shown to enhance mental function and focus.

Note: For your chance to win a 12 pack of Shine+ click here.

Our resident Doctor of Chinese Medicine, Naturopath and Wellness Coach share their thoughts on Shine+ Australia’s first ‘smart drink’. Each review includes thoughts on taste, performance and effect, ingredients and who they’d recommend it to. Here’s a snapshot of the order:

Carla’s Review of Shine+:Carla Brion - CASA DE KARMA

Overall rating: 4/5

This new smart drink is pretty cool! Coming from a health background, I am anti-energy drinks because they are not sustainable, can be highly addictive and deplete your Qi (vital energy) and Yin (blood and bloody fluids) due to their heating and overstimulating properties.


When first trying Shine+, it’s taste came as quite a surprise. It was warming and intense, as if you could feel it starting your metabolism. It has an earthy taste but also that sweet and uplifting vibe. Shine’s after-taste has a bit of a kick to it too. I guess in trying to sum it up, I would say it is a bit of a healthy and natural version of Red Bull.


The synergistic ingredients of Shine+ are well thought out and actually very ‘Chinese Medicine-like’ (earning it brownie points from me) with several of the ingredients being Traditional Chinese Medicinal herbs used in ancient herbal formulas. It aligns nicely with the ‘Food is Medicine’ philosophy.

  • Green Tea is naturally energising and cool in nature to offset the other warming ingredients.
  • Turmeric is ‘Jiang Huang’ in TCM and is spicy and bitter in properties and support the liver, stomach and spleen. It moves Qi and blood and can actually regulate menstruation and helps with period pain.
  • Ginseng AKA ‘Ci Wu Jia’ is a tonifying herb and thus an energy tonic so naturally it increases Qi helping with fatigue.
  • Ginkgo Biloba or ‘Bai Guo’ is clinically proven to support brain function and memory.
  • It also has B2, B6, B12 and Caffeine which all help to regulate mood as well as brain function and activity.

Performance & Effect:

After drinking Shine+, I was subtly more focused, sharper and less weary/fatigued. I tested this drink when at work for an arvo pick-me-up, and also on a Sunday after a few wines the night before and it was effective but not in an over-powering, jittery way.

Like any busy, modern woman (which pretty much everyone can relate to!), at times I get tired, sometimes my sleep is compromised and thus my energy drops. Shine+ seems like a gentle and more natural alternative to harsher stimulants.

Of course, everything in moderation as I am sure if you over-do this, like anything, it will have side-effects.

Who I’d recommend Shine+ to:

  • Any one looking to wean off stimulants like Red Bull
  • Coffee addicts who are trying to curb their intake or mix it up a little
  • Students (especially during exam time, e.g. Cram-Fest!)
  • Health-conscious but busy people who need a little natural pick me up every
  • Anxiety-prone people who are easily effected by coffee.


Erin’s Review of Shine+:

Erin Williams - Wellness Coach & Mum

Overall rating: 3.5 / 5

I wasn’t sure what to expect given that many of the ingredients are chosen for function rather than flavour, but I really enjoyed the taste. It was pleasantly sweet and I liked the little kick of ginger after each sip.


There’s some great ingredients included in the drink – most of which have been shown to help fight fatigue. Caffeine, green tea and ginseng all help when you need an energy boost, and the green tea removes the caffeine jitters. I was happy to see a few B vitamins listed in the ingredients as these are great for mental performance and focus.

Performance & Effect:

I did notice a difference in my mental function. It’s been a long time since I had a full night of uninterrupted sleep so when I sit down to work it’s hard to stay focused for long. After drinking my Shine+ I was able to concentrate and utilise nap time to my advantage. I actually got more work done than I normally would and spent more time actually working rather than just scrolling through Instagram!

As a Mum…

I loved that it’s in a small bottle and cold, meaning it’s a) quick to drink and b) there’s no risk of spilling a hot drink on my little one. However the fact that it’s so quick and easy to drink meant that I didn’t really savour it in the same way I do my morning coffee!

Due to the cost I wouldn’t reach for Shine+ every day. Having just returned to work from a year of maternity leave I’m very intentional with how I spent my money and can’t quite justify the cost of Shine+ over my usual coffee.

Who I’d recommend Shine+ to:

Anyone who:

  • Wants to boost their energy or increase their concentration.
  • Doesn’t enjoy the taste of coffee, but still wants a hit of caffeine.
  • Avoids the typically unhealthy energy drinks sold in supermarkets. It’s the perfect energy drink for the health-conscious as it has no added sugar, artificial colours or flavours.

Alison’s Review of Shine+Alison Mitchell - CASA DE KARMA

Overall rating: 4 / 5

Apart from one time in my life when I was about to speak in front of a large crowd, I’ve never been one to reach for an energy drink. That was until I joined the ranks of the sleep deprived mothers, and I felt like all my words have come out higgledy-piggledy ever since.

As per the instructions, 30 minutes before I was due to start recording a podcast, I cracked open a bottle of Shine+. It’s a small little bottle (110mL), I could easily have chugged it back quickly but I wanted to pay close attention to the taste – I was writing a review after all.


At first I was a bit disappointed as all I could taste was weak apple juice. Then, tastes of ginger started to appear, intensifying the more I drank. The heat of the ginger hit me in the roof of my mouth and I forgot about the bland apple flavour, and started to enjoy the gingery heat a lot more, particularly as it was a cold winter day. There was a hint of mild turmeric, and a slight hint of herbal medicine (something I’m quite familiar to).

The level of sweetness was just right, not too sweet but sweet enough to balance the heat of the ginger.

In it’s own right I wouldn’t drink this again for the taste, but it was palatable enough that if the effects were worth it, I’d be happy to. I mean, I take liquid herbs quite often and they taste pretty shoddy, so I feel like this is a walk in the park by comparison. Other energy drinks that I’ve tried are extremely sweet and chemically tasting, this had none of those characteristics. It tasted more fruity and herbal than chemical.

Performance & Effect:

For context, I don’t get a buzz from coffee and a cup too many won’t give me insomnia or palpitations, so I didn’t expect much from this drink. But whilst recording my podcast I didn’t feel that I struggled to express myself, or that my attention drifted at all, which to me was something of note. I didn’t experience a dramatic drop in energy or focus as time went on either, as some energy drinks may do. To me, these meant a good result.


  • Herbs and nutrients – Gingko biloba, Turmeric, Siberian ginseng, Vitamin B6, Green tea and Vitamin B2, B6 and B12 are the highlighted ingredients that are reputed to provide the effects of shine. Gingko is a fabulous herb for cognitive function, and the dose provided in a Shine+ is fairly decent compared to what the literature recommends for it’s use. Siberian ginseng, used for it’s stress adaption properties is also at a good dose. Turmeric however is a herb that has has been researched so much at so many different dosage ranges that there doesn’t appear to be a solid dose that is agreed on. Most western herbalists would use double the dose that is in Shine+, however I feel that Turmeric is something that can be used in small amounts and a benefit will still be received. The website for Shine+ lists the constituent of Green Tea, l-theanine, however this is not on the bottle in a dose, only the Green Tea is listed. I would love to see more l-theanine in the ingredients, as it is an antioxidant and also helps to reduce anxiety and racing thoughts without a sedative effect, something that would certainly help to round out the more stimulating side of this drink.
  • Caffeine – there’s 35g per serving (compare this to approximately 95g caffeine in an average latte) which isn’t a huge amount for a typical coffee drinker
  • Sugar & preservatives – There about the equivalent of 1 teaspoon of sugar and from what I can gather it comes from the apple juice. For most people this wouldn’t be a problem, however for those going sugar free is might be an issue. There are also some preservatives, which again may be a problem for those who are sensitive to these numbers (202, 211). For those who aren’t reactive, it shouldn’t be a problem.

Who I’d recommend Shine+ to:

Someone who wants a bit of a cognitive boost before a special event like a talk, a meeting, an exam or smashing out an essay, but not to someone who is over-sensitive to caffeine.

There you have it! We hope you found these Shine+ drink reviews helpful! For more details visit the Shine+ website.

P.S. Who do you know that could do with a bit of extra mental focus and clarity? Share this review with them now, they’ll thank you later!

CDK Team

CASA DE KARMA is the home of Australia’s holistic health collective: A virtual oasis, where holistic health experts empower the women inspired to live naturally and in wellness.

SHOWHIDE Comments (23)
  1. I’m a working Mum of 3, so these reviews are super relevant and helpful. I certainly could do with the extra ability to focus. Off to enter the competition

  2. Thank goodness someone has created something better for us than the other energy drinks taking up supermarket shelves. Everyone gets the afternoon slump but not everyone wants to consume the bad stuff

  3. Sounds like a little bottle of Shine would be just the thing to help me shine on through the afternoon when I’m wondering if I’m even going to make it through the afternoon traffic. I can’t stand the smell of energy drinks and coffee after 3 has me twitching ’til 12.

  4. interested in trying as it contains all ingredients that I love, certainly in the right amounts I need though! I love trying new things!

    1. It is a healthy alternative! Good luck(and if you don’t happen to be a winner, you can always purchase direct from the Shine+ website to give it a try) 🙂

  5. I’m a busy working and studying Mum, anything that can give me a healthy boost and the edge to juggle everything I’ve got going on at the moment is worth a try! I’d love to Shine + succeed!

    1. Wow that’s like 3 full-time jobs Cathy! Good luck with the studies. Check out the nourish & nurture sections of the site for info & inspo to give you that healthy boost / nudge too 🙂 x

  6. With my final year of university and me stupidly doing 5 subjects, this drink would be a godsend. I’ve been relying on coffee and red bull and trying to wean myself slowly off has been a nightmare!

  7. I’m always excited to try new products on the market, can’t wait to give Shine a go! My stomach doesn’t really agree with coffee, I hope that Shine will give me the kick that coffee does plus will make me feel amazing

  8. Working full-time, studying full-time, an internship and training 6 mornings a week, Shine seems like the perfect go-to drink to grab to give me that extra bit of boost to get through the day! Can’t wait to try!

  9. After recovering from an eating disorder my body has never felt the same, I feel sluggish and tired all the time and this sounds like it has the perfect ingredients to make me feel amazing again and give me back some energy!

  10. Thanks for the great info on this awesome drink! I love the healing benefits of Tumeric and look forward to trying it for those long sleepness nights looking after sick kids.

  11. I teach small children so at the end of the day I am exhausted mentally and physically. This drink sounds like exactly what I need to find my 2nd wind. I would also share some with my son who is currently doing his HSC trials to help him focus.

  12. Shine+ sounds like it would be beneficial for me! With a family history of diabetes and hear disease, something natural without added sugar sounds great. The TCM herbs sound like they would boost my energy levels, especially since injuring my back and not being able to sleep deeply or move as easily any more which leave me feeling so drained and the turmeric might even assist in decreasing the inflammation and the consequent pain. Going to enter the competition now, thanks! 🙂

  13. I don’t touch energy drinks nor drink coffee ( just don’t like the taste ) so I’d definitely love to try this as I really struggle in the afternoons. I love their compact size, healthy ingredients and the extra benefits of also having turmeric in it.

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