Do nootropics "wear off" or are there lasting benefits?
Talking about compounds like racetams and noopept vs caffeine/theanine and modafinil.
I have not yet found any substance that produced permanent effects. Some things like noopept and semax will leave lingering effects even after cessation, but they will fade. The best way to secure permanent improvement is to use nootropics to gain knowledge and skills.
I have had a permanent change it feels like, I took racetams and noopept, and other things almost every day for about a year and a half. I no longer feel like I need to take anything, but I do like the take the occasional dose of phenyl.
Initially racetams had profound effects which eventually levelled off for me. I think many popular nootropics are not as much enhancing as they are correcting. If the more popular nootropics like racetams really are just correctors, this would explain the diminishing response and need to cycle, as well as why most adventurous users test a large number of substances in short succession. I look forward to the development of the safe and unquestionably effective cognitive enhancing drug, but in the meantime there is plenty on the market to explore.
I can confidently say that at least one of piracetam's (apparently corrective) effects on me has been practically permanent...

Until age 22, I had an incredibly difficult time intentionally paying attention to others when they spoke. This caused no problems when they addressed academic subjects; but, within a minute or two of them starting to relay some personal anecdote, I'd begin feeling exhausted. No matter how much I liked the person, and wanted to find their story interesting, I'd start incessantly yawning, and tearing up so badly that I couldn't see their face. Worse yet, around the age of 18, I noticed this problem begin to intensify: people would typically get about a 60-second window with each effort to tell a personal reddit story, before they'd begin sounding like The Peanuts' teacher, and see me nodding off...

About a week after using 2 grams (each) of piracetam and choline bitartrate per day, I began noticing substantial improvements with this problem. Within 6 weeks of using that regimen, the benifits completely vanished. In the 4 years since then, I've gone up to 3 months without using piracetam, during which time those symptoms of overwhelmingly exhaustion didn't resurface in the slightest.
PRL-8-53 and IDRA-21 both resulted in permanent effects for me. Semax, Selank, Cerebrolysin, and NSI-189 are all touted for their permanent effects (along with being much more powerful nootropics) as well.My experience with IDRA-21 was some time ago, so I don't recall what specifically was improved, except that my writing was slightly improved, as well as reaction time. As for PRL-8-53, there was a moderate improvement in working memory, a drastic (first few months, now moderate) improvement in speed and overall quality in learning new skills, and a moderate improvement in fine muscle memory and reaction time.
Not same as magic toast but I understand some people have very positive and permanent changes after LSD use so it would be good if noots did too, but with a higher degree of reliability.
On my end I once was in a drug induced state of hypomania or something (nothing illegal, probably drug interaction and personal brain wiring). It felt like the universe was communicating directly with me. I was afraid to fall asleep because I thought that state would end. After like 4 days of not sleeping I took some TCAs and that fixed it. When I was reviewing my the sound recordings of my "wisdom" made during that time, it was considerably less enlightened than I felt originally. It did help me however as I overcame a particular ocd tendency, but the positive effect wore off after 6 months.

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