Hi Lisa and welcome to Aquarium Advice! I have a betta too!
I never heard of Filter Aid or Aqua Plus. Some people do use aquarium salt in freshwater aquariums, and some don't. I think Allivymar or TankGirl, who are some of the advisors, had a link to a site that discussed it.
I have used Stress-Zyme and Amquel. I wouldn't recommend them for a new tank. Stress-zyme won't get the tank cycled any faster, and when I used it on my very first tank, looking back, I think it actually slowed my cycle time. Bio-Spira is the only product to have the correct bacteria to cycle a tank in approx. 24 hours. I have used this and it works well. Some people said it didn't work for them, but the advisors felt that the batch could have gotten warm, and expired. Here's a link: http://www.marineland.com/products/m...L_biospira.asp
Amquel may also slow the cycling in your tank. It will bind to the ammonia so it's not available to the fish, but it's not available to the good bacteria either (the bacteria that you want in your tank to consume the ammonia and nitrite). Bio-Spira and Amquel should not be used together. The Amquel will just bind to the ammonia and make it unavailable to the Bio-Spira, and then the Bio-Spira will be wasted (and it's somewhat expensive for little packet!) Just keep an eye on your ammonia levels and change water when necessary instead of using Amquel.
P.S. I do use Novaqua as a dechlorinator and slime coat enhancer for my betta.
As a net dip I use Aquari-Sol. I don't use it in the tank because it contains copper, and repeated use of copper can hurt the fish. Some fish and inverts are so sensitive that Aquari-Sol is not recommended for them. But for a net dip it's ok. Then I rinse the net well under the faucet.
Hope this helps a bit, and lots of other helpful info. will come along soon!
Just wondering -- do you have bettas in the 10 gallon with the mini penguin filter? I had my betta in an Eclipse 3 with the bio-wheel and he hated it. It was just too much current. Now he's in a 5.5 gallon with a sponge filter run thru a gang valve, and a 25-watt heater.