I have used various supplements over the years such a creatine, protein powder, fat burners, pre-workout and post-workout. Protein powder mixed with fat free milk are used as additional meals when I am bulking up to gain muscles. They add extra calories and protein I need to make my muscles grow as I am not a big eater so gaining all the macros I need from eating food just isn’t going to cut it.
Protein powders have worked for me in combination with heavy weightlifting. However, it is a toss up whether the cost of these powders are worth it compared to just eating more “clean” food. I like the convenience of the protein powders. I could never get into the 6-8 meals a day thing that fitness professionals do.
Creatine I used to aid in muscle recover after my workouts and couldn’t tell you if they worked or not. I was always taking it with other supplements so who knows. I bought it because it was recommended as a blend of supplements to take for muscle growth.
I have tried fat burners like Hydroxycut and I am not a big fan. I have gotten heart palpitations after taking them and really don’t like how they make me feel. Pre-workout supplements I use but not as a crutch. I use a pre-workout when I feel lethargic and need some pep and energy to start my workout. The post-workout supplement reminds me of creatine. I think it helps but cannot give you a definitive on it since I stretch, foam roll and eat pretty clean so maybe my results is mostly because of that and not my post-workout supplement.
In my 20 plus years of using supplements I have found that for the average person like myself they are a waste of money with the exception of protein powders. The powders I have found are a great meal addition when trying to bulk up because it is easier to drink calories and proteins than eat it. I use it to supplement to my regular eating when I want to bulk up. I am not trying to get to 5% body-fat for a fitness show so the other supplements are just not a part of my regular wheelhouse. I do occasionally use them especially the pre-workout but it is not a must and would leave them to the professionals and not the average person trying to get in shape for health reasons as opposed to aesthetics.