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How Madecassic Acid Benefits Your Skin According to Science

  • Madecassic acid is one of the main components of Centella asiatica
  • It supports collagen production
  • It moisturizes the skin
  • It provides antioxidant protection
  • It softens skin and relievs inflammations
  • It is safe for sensitive skin

Madecassic acid in skincare is an ingredient that tackles anti-aging and anti-inflammatory concerns. Don’t let the name intimidate you; by the time you’re done with this article, madecassic acid will be your new best friend. Wondering how we know that? Let us properly introduce you to madecassic acid’s skin benefits and how they work. 

What is madecassic acid?

In science speak, madecassic acid is one of the triterpene saponin compounds found in Centella asiatica (aka Gotu kola or Tiger Grass). Centella asiatica is an herb primarily grown in Asia that has been used for centuries for treating burns and minor wounds. It’s also gained a lot of popularity as the star ingredient in Korean skincare named “cica.”[1]

Madecassic acid is an essential component in C. asiatica since it’s responsible for promoting healing and has anti-inflammatory effects. As an antioxidant, it can also protect skin from damage caused by free radicals.[2]

Madecassic acid benefits for skin

For concerns that include inflammation, acne, sensitivity, and skin aging, madecassic acid truly stands out. Read on to learn more about how madecassic acid benefits your skin. 

Accelerates skin recovery

Madecassic acid is great for healing wounds like burns and scars since it can indirectly promote collagen and has anti-inflammatory effects. Collagen is a protein that strengthens the skin, maintains elasticity, retains moisture content, and aids the body in repairing and healing wounds. Well, madecassic acid was found to increase the intracellular free amino acid pool, which is required for the production of collagen as well as to maintain tissue integrity and support skin healing.[3]

According to studies, madecassic acid also promotes glycosaminoglycans, fundamental components of skin tissue that maintain structural proteins such as elastic and collagen.[4]

Provides antioxidant protection

An antioxidant like madecassic acid can also help protect your skin from free radicals generated by environmental aggressors like UV and pollution.[5] Free radicals are one of the main culprits that cause cell damage, being responsible for accelerating photoaging and making skin look dull with signs of hyperpigmentation. Fortunately, you can use madecassic acid to counteract the effects of these harmful molecules and shield your skin against them. It turns out madecassic acid works best when paired with other antioxidants like vitamin C.

Moisturizes the skin

Madecassic acid can also moisture the skin and maintain hydration levels. It does that by stimulating glycosaminoglycans, the skin’s components mentioned earlier that, besides promoting collagen, also act as water-binding molecules to help the skin retain water.[4] For the record, hyaluronic acid is one of the essential glycosaminoglycans responsible for maintaining moisture content. So after adding some madecassic acid into your life, your skin will be as bouncy and plump as your favorite jello.

Soothes redness and inflammatory skin conditions

Madecassic acid is mainly known for suppressing inflammation and reducing redness. According to studies, it can restrain and regulate enzymes responsible for inflammation, so it’s great to calm irritated skin.

Reduces fine lines and wrinkles

You can kiss those fine lines and wrinkles goodbye after introducing madecassic acid into your routine. We’ve mentioned that antioxidants like madecassic acid are great for protecting your skin, but they also help prevent aging signs by offsetting sun damage. Besides, this multi-tasker also supports collagen production, provides moisture to the skin, and softens inflammations, all of which lead to fewer wrinkles and a firmer appearance. If you’re not a fan of vitamin C, madecassic acid is gentle enough to use on sensitive skin and serves as a great alternative. 

Is it safe?

Madecassic acid is a skin-loving ingredient considered safe for skincare. However, it’s best to perform a patch test for 24 hours before applying anything on the skin to avoid sensitivities. Overall, those whose concerns include relieving inflammation, irritation, signs of aging, or acne, would benefit from using madecassic acid for skin. 

Final words

When isolated from C. asiatica, madecassic acid is proven to promote collagen, calm skin irritation, and have anti-inflammatory effects. Congratulations! You just graduated from Madecassic Acid 101, go forth and tackle those skin concerns like a pro.


Women’s Concepts uses reliable sources, including dermatologists’ insights, clinical trials, and scientific journals, to find accurate information and support all the facts shared in our articles. All statements and claims have clear and legit references. Read our editorial policy to learn more about our sources of information, our process of researching and fact-checking the content, and how our team strives to keep all articles updated, completed, and trustworthy.

  1. Bylka W, Znajdek-Awiżeń P, Studzińska-Sroka E, Brzezińska M. Centella asiatica in cosmetology. Postepy Dermatol Alergol. 2013 Feb, https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3834700/
  2. Buranasudja, V., Rani, D., Malla, A. et al. Insights into antioxidant activities and anti-skin-aging potential of callus extract from Centella asiatica (L.). Sci Rep 11, 13459 (2021). https://doi.org/10.1038/s41598-021-92958-7
  3. Maquart FX, Bellon G, Gillery P, Wegrowski Y, Borel JP. Stimulation of collagen synthesis in fibroblast cultures by a triterpene extracted from Centella asiatica. Connect Tissue Res. 1990, https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/2354631/
  4. Maquart FX, Chastang F, Simeon A, Birembaut P, Gillery P, Wegrowski Y. Triterpenes from Centella asiatica stimulate extracellular matrix accumulation in rat experimental wounds. Eur J Dermatol. 1999 Jun, https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/10356407/
  5. Jin, Yuqin & Li, Jialing & Ding, Liang & Zhao, Qing & Song, Yuxian & Li, Guifeng & Ji, Jun & Ni, Yanhong & Hu, Qingang. (2021). Madecassic acid protects human periodontal ligament fibroblasts against hydrogen peroxide-induced cell damage by maintaining mitochondrial membrane potential. Molecular & Cellular Toxicology, https://www.researchgate.net/publication/354712540

Read next: 15 Best Centella Asiatica Products for Healthy Skin

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