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Mad Hippie Vitamin C Serum Review

is a Solution for:
Combination Skin, Dry Skin, Dull Skin, Fine Lines, Hyperpigmentation, Oily Skin, Redness
Mad Hippie Vitamin C Serum 1 oz
June 3, 2011 Reviewed by TIA Community Member 17 Comments
TRU Rating
Visibly improves uneven skin tone


Contains a stable form of vitamin C that lightens dark spots


May cause dryness around the eye area

by Amy

Having been a big fan and follower of TIA, I was thrilled to get a sample of Mad Hippie Vitamin C Serum ($34). This product was exactly the kind that I wanted to try and was a perfect match for my skin type and problems.

First, I am 36, have oily, acne prone skin and have struggled with adult acne for years.  While the breakouts have mostly subsided, they have left a lot of post acne brown scars around my mouth and chin. I don't generally use any moisturizer, as a good serum is enough moisture for my face.  I have moderate sun damage and hyperpigmentation, few wrinkles, and very little loss of elasticity. I had been using an Arcona serum that I was pretty happy with and that did not cause any breakouts. After using Mad Hippie, however, I am a complete convert.

About the product.  It has vitamin C as the second ingredient in a form that the company calls sodium ascorbyl phosphate (STAY-CR 50) which they claim is more stable and bioavailable than the traditional L-Ascorbic acid used by most companies. Also included are vitamin E, ferulic and hyaluronic acid. My first thought was of the SkinCeuticals version that I tried a few years ago.

Now it may have been reformulated, but at that time it was tacky and smelly and not at all cosmetically elegant. I was not a fan. Mad Hippie's version is quite the opposite. Other notable ingredients are clary sage to balance oil, chamomile extract to protect, and grapefruit to exfoliate.

Now I am a true product junkie and have tried countless products, but have rarely ever finished a full bottle of anything.  Not this time ladies! The initial impression is so nice. It smells good, goes on silky and is absorbed quickly. The hyaluronic acid plumps the skin nicely. And after using about half the bottle I really started noticing some changes in my skin. So many of the brown spots faded that I felt a lot less self conscious without some makeup on to even my skin tone. Now, when I realized that I was falling in love with this stuff, I started to wonder how much it was going to cost. I never believe that anything that works will be something I can afford to buy without taking out a loan.  Boy was I wrong! I went to the website and found that my new bottle was $34.  I was truly shocked and was so happily proven wrong.  I could love something that was also in my budget.  The best part was there are no ingredients on the list that made me cringe. I ordered more and and a bottle for a friend too!

Thanks TIA for a GREAT new find for me!

  • July 14, 2015

    by Marta

    Hi Jessica, I did look at the study you refer to andit is on ascorbic acid-6-palmitate. I just want to point out that Mad Hippie does not use this. It contains Sodium Ascorbyl Phosphate, which is not the same thing.

  • June 21, 2015

    by Marta

    Hi Jessica, I can't find any information on this study. Did the article you read provide a link to it? The only references I can find in the Journal of Investigative Dermatology are saying the opposite - as an anitoxidant it protects against UV.

  • June 20, 2015

    by Jessica McGrath

    This is more a comment than review, i would love to hear back from an expert on this concern..
    Recently i was researching different forms of vitamin c and found this very alarming reference to a study on Sodium Ascorbyl Phosphate...
    Will someone please confirm or refute this? Thank you.

    A landmark study reported in the Journal of Investigative Dermatology investigated what happens in human skin when ascorbyl palmitate is applied and then exposed to a moderate amount of sunlight – about the same as an average person would be exposed to on a sunny day.
    The researchers expected ascorbyl palmitate to penetrate the lipid barrier of the skin, but they weren’t sure if it would penetrate the lipid barrier of skin cells. They discovered that it efficiently penetrates both lipid barriers, and that the ascorbic acid very effectively subdued intra-cellular free radical generation. However they were astonished to find out that any gains bought by the ascorbic acid were dramatically outweighed by the pitfalls of the palmitic acid. Their astonishment was apparent in the choice of adjectives they used to describe the havoc. According to the authors, palmitic acid is a lightning rod for UV rays which brought on “catastrophic” skin cell death on a “massive scale.” The authors further warned against using any vitamin C serum with a concentration of ascorbyl palmitate in excess of 100-300 M (micromoles). Distressingly, many cosmetics contain concentrations as high as 15 percent which exceeds the authors’ warning dose by a factor of 1000. The number of cosmetics containing ascorbyl palmitate exceeded 617 in the year 2000, a leap from a year 1992 count of 667 products (Burnnet 2011).
    Check both your sunscreen and your vitamin C serum for ascorbyl palmitate. The Environmental Working Group is working toward getting the FDA to ban its use in sunscreens.

  • September 16, 2013

    by Marta

    Mad Hippie uses around 9-10% Sodium Ascorbyl Phosphate. Given the greater bioavailablilty, this would compare to around a 20% ascorbic acid product, according to the company. You will also find this information at the end of the review on the product page.

  • September 16, 2013

    by Abby

    Love this product, just wondering the percentage of Vitamin C. Forgot to check this out when I ordered, and now can't find any info. Thanks!

  • January 8, 2013

    by Hilda

    I just orderd the other exfolieting serum, the face cream and the eye cream from iHerb (very cheap). Pitty that noone says something about the exfoliating serum. Next time i will try the Vitamin C serum.
    I also have adult acne and i get it all the time from different reasons (stress, menstruation or just not a good cream). I also have brown spots from my acnes but my skin is not that oily ... that it why i use cream over the serum.
    I used to make my own Vit C serum. I used a bit of rose water, macadamia oil and Ascorbic acid (and grapefruit oil for the wonderful smell). But my own serum didnt help me with the brown spots.
    Any way ... i would be happy to hear some comments over the rest of the products of Mad Hippie.
    It will tak a while till my order comes to me coz i live in Holland.

  • December 20, 2012

    by Marta

    Hi Vicki, everyone is a little different and you should experiment with caution. Although Mad Hippie is a gentle product, vitamin C can be drying around the delicate eye area. The best approach would be to try it without going right up against the eye and only day time (as at night it is all too easy to rub your eyes). Start with doing this every few days and build up to daily if you don't experience any adverse reactions.

  • December 19, 2012

    by Vicki Casson

    When applying MadHip Serum, how far up on my cheeks should I go? I'm hesitant to spread it to close to "where my cheek and eye meet" for worry of irritating my eye. But then again, right under my eyes it's discolored and wrinkled, so this area could really do with a vit.C serum ?

  • August 29, 2011

    by J.Alex

    This is DEFINATELY a company that has sparked my interest! And I'm thinkin' I gotta give a go. I DO wish they had a face-wash (and hope the will work on one) more for 'combo' skin. I'm REALLY happy I came across all of your reviews for the hippie!

  • August 27, 2011

    by Oksana

    my experience w/the serum is very similar to Amy's - love it so much! and use 2x/day. added eye cream recently - a lttle dry on its own, but over a more moisturizing eye cream works great. I actually skipped a few times the under-eye concealer. the facial cream is a little too rich for my face, but fantastic for the decollette.

  • August 27, 2011

    by Victoria

    I am so curious about this line. The ingredients they use are outstanding. It also seems as though the way they combine the ingredients is very unique. I am dying to try the whole line! Sounds like everyone loves them :)

  • July 7, 2011

    by Jen

    I love this product, too! I have been using it 1-2x/wk a week for the last month, and it feels so nice on my skin. I prefer it to the skinceuticals product which never felt as good and was way too expensive.

  • July 7, 2011

    by pat

    anxious to try this one out..........I am a big fan of HA and this product certainly makes it affordable!

  • June 11, 2011

    by Marta

    I am so glad it worked out for you. Mad Hippie has reformulated its eye cream and I'm going to be trying that out soon, as well as the cleanser.

  • June 10, 2011

    by Deana Johnson

    Great review! I have been using Mad Hippie products for about 4 months now and have seen amazing changes in my skin. The serum is definitely one of my favs!


  • June 8, 2011

    by JustD

    This was my first serum that I tried after reading about it from a post, I bought the whole shebang, and the serum is absolutely wonderful. I'm on the last drop of it now and debating if I should try something new or stick with what works, b'cuz this works and at a cost effective price that's hard to beat!

    Great review Amy!

  • June 7, 2011

    by Vitamin C Serum Review | Skin Care – Best Natural Ingredients, Skin Products, Face Cream, Eye Cream, Vitamin C Serum, Cleanser & More!

    [...] We wanted to share with you a recent review of our vitamin C serum on Truth in Aging – Mad Hippie Vitamin C Serum Review [...]

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