mad hippie vitamin c serum for acne

Can Vitamin C treat acne?

Usually, no. This is a superpower most forms of Vitamin C do NOT have.

The exception? Sodium Ascorbyl Phosphate. If you have acne-prone skin, this is the kind of Vitamin C you want in your stash.

You can find it in Mad Hippie Vitamin C Serum. Here’s what sets it apart from other Vitamin C serums out there.

What’s In Mad Hippie Vitamin C Serum?


L-Ascorbic Acid (LAA) is the pure form of Vitamin C. Study after study has proven its anti-aging properties:

Mad Hippie Vitamin C Serum uses Sodium Ascorbyl Phosphate (SAP), a derivative of Vitamin C that’s less studied than L-Ascorbic Acid.

Studies show SAP does convert to L-Ascorbic Acid in the skin, but we still don’t know how it compares to LAA. It’s probably a little less effective at fighting wrinkles.

So why should you use SAP instead of LAA? Three reasons:

  • Longer shelf life: LAA is famous for being unstable. It goes bad when exposed to light, heat and air. Even when you buy a freshly-made LAA serum that’s properly preserved to prolong its shelf-life, it usually lasts only a few short weeks. SAP is way stabler and lasts you for many months.
  • Less irritation: High concentrations of LAA can irritate skin, especially if it’s sensitive. SAP is way gentler. All skin types can tolerate it.
  • Acne-fighter: Unlike SAP, LAA can’t fight acne. Studies show SAP reduces sebum oxidation (a main cause of acne and inflammation) by up to 40%! It’s also more effective than 5% benzoyl peroxide and 0.1% differin.

If you have acne, sensitive skin or are simply tired of wasting a small fortune on vitamin C serums that go bad after a month, switching to Sodium Ascorbyl Phosphate makes sense.

P.S. Mad Hippie Vitamin C Serum uses 10% Sodium Ascorbyl Phosphate. That’s a higher dose than you’ll find in most serums.

Related: Is Sodium Ascorbyl Phosphate The Best Vitamin C Derivative?


Vitamin C is a powerful antioxidant on its own. It works even better when paired with vitamin E and ferulic acid. Mad Hippie Vitamin C Serum contains both. Phew!

Studies show these three antioxidants boost one another’s effectiveness and increase the sun protection your sunscreen gives you. That’s why I layer it underneath sunscreen every morning.

P.S. Ferulic acid is an antioxidant on steroids. It fights THREE types of free radicals! (Most antioxidants only destroy one).

Related: Is Ferulic Acid The Most Powerful Antioxidant Of Them All?


Hyaluronic Acid is a humectant on steroids. Hume… what?

Humectant is a fancy way of describing ingredients that can draw water from the air into your skin and bind it there. Hyaluronic Acid is the best at this: it holds up to 1000 times its weight in water!

All that moisture has a plumping effect on the skin that reduces the look of fine lines and wrinkles. It makes it softer to the touch and gives it a translucent glow, too.

P.S. Hyaluronic Acid ain’t the only humectant in Mad Hippie Vitamin C Serum. This baby has glycerin, too.

Related: What Are Humectants And Why Should You Use Them?

Struggling to put together a skincare routine that banishes shine, pimples, and blackheads? Download your FREE “Best Skincare Routine For Oily Skin” cheatsheet to get started (it features product recommendations + right application order):


Lightweight, runny texture that sinks quickly into the skin and dries to a matte finish without leaving a greasy residue behind.


This serum has a light floral scent that fades away quickly. That’s the natural smell of the ingredients. Mad Hippie didn’t add any scent to it.

How To Use It

In the morning, after cleansing.

Performance & Personal Opinion

I apply Mad Hippie Vitamin C Serum straight after cleansing and slather on sunscreen on top (I don’t use moisturizer in the mornings). It layers well under most sunscreens I’ve tried. No pilling or anything like that.

I find the serum fairly hydrating. The addition of Hyaluronic Acid and glycerin gives my skin an extra boost of moisture that helps to keep it hydrated all day long. If your skin’s drier than mine, you may need a moisturizer to keep an optimal moisture level as you go through your day.

I don’t have acne so I can’t vouch for how well it works. Still, the science is solid here so I’m confident it will make a difference.

What I can vouch for is the brightening effect. The serum gives my skin a lovely glow. It also helps me keep wrinkles at bay thanks to the infusion of antioxidants.

If you’re looking for an alternative to LAA, Mad Hippie Vitamin C Serum is definitely worth checking out.

Mad Hippie Vitamin C Serum

Who Is This For?

Everyone can use it, but it’s more suitable for acne-prone skin.

Who Is This NOT For?

If your main concern is anti-aging AND you don’t have acne, stick to a serum with L-Ascorbic Acid.


A dark bottle with a dropper applicator. Sleek and practical.

Does Mad Hippie Vitamin C Serum Live Up To Its Claims?

Our award-winning serum is a harmonious blend of antioxidants that work wonders on improving the overall appearance of the skin! Too generic to mean anything specific or deny. It does make skin look better.
Sodium Ascorbyl Phosphate, a more stable form of Vitamin C than the commonly used L-Ascorbic Acid found in most skin care products, provides the same benefits, without the risk of oxidation and irritation that is often associated with L-Ascorbic Acid.  True.

Price & Availability

$33.99 at Free People, iHerb, Mad Hippie and Ulta

Do You Need It?

If you have acne-prone skin, this is the best Vitamin C serum out there for you.

Dupes & Alternatives


Water Deionized, Vitamin C (Sodium Ascorbyl Phosphate), Alkyl Benzoate, Vegetable Glycerin, Water, Glycerin, Sodium Levulinate, Sodium Anisate, Clary Sage (Salvia Sclarea), Grapefruit (Citrus Grandis), Hyaluronic acid, Amorphophallus Konjac Root Powder, Aloe Barbadensis Leaf, Vitamin E (Tocotrienol), Ferulic acid, Chamomile Flower Extract (Recutita Matricaria), Sodium Phytate, Xanthum Gum, Hydroxyethylcellulose