I’m comparing texture, packaging, price, ingredients, and more in this ultimate throwdown. A winner will emerge!
Sugar and Sweeteners
The Takeaway: Hiya uses monk fruit extract (a super fruit) and a touch of mannitol (an all-natural sweetener preferred by dentists) to sweeten its vitamins.
Flinstones says it has no sugar or high fructose corn syrup, but that seems pretty deceiving – their vitamin includes fructose (fruit sugar), sorbitol (a sugar alcohol manufactured from corn syrup), and sucralose (artificial sweetener).
A big concern for many parents is how much sugar a child’s multivitamin has.
The good news with both Hiya and Flinstones is that neither is loaded with sugar, but things get interesting when you do a little digging.
When looking at the ingredient list, Flinstones appears to sweeten its vitamins with fructose (fruit sugar), though the label says 0g of sugar as there isn’t enough to be significant.
It also contains sorbitol, a sugar alcohol, and sucralose, a general-purpose artificial sweetener.
Sorbitol is manufactured from corn syrup and contains about one-third fewer calories than sugar and is 50-60% as sweet.
Sucralose is derived from sugar through a manufacturing process that alters the chemistry of sugar. The result is an artificial sweetener with 0 calories, yet it’s 600 times sweeter than sucrose.
I find it very interesting that Flinstones touts no high fructose corn syrup, yet it contains sorbitol as its second ingredient, which is manufactured from corn syrup. I’ll let you make up your own opinion on that one.
On the other hand, Hiya sweetens its vitamins with monk fruit extract and a touch of mannitol.
Monk fruit is a super fruit that gets its powerful sweetness from its unique antioxidants, and mannitol is an all-natural sweetener found in fruits and vegetables and suggested by dentists in their fight against tooth decay.
So, when it comes to sugars and sweeteners, Hiya definitely wins this one.
Non-Vitamin Ingredients (Fillers)
The Takeaway: Hiya’s other ingredients that are used to sweeten, bind, and color the vitamins are high-quality, clean, natural, and minimal.
Flinstones’ other ingredients are not – they include ingredients you expect to see in junk food, like Red 40 and artificial flavoring.
Before we get to the included vitamins, I want to talk about non-vitamin ingredients. What random stuff is lurking in that chewable?
Hiya’s other ingredients include:
- Plant cellulose blend: a type of fiber that makes up the cell walls of plants
- Coconut oil powder: made from premium refined coconut oil and meets clean-label requirements
- Natural flavors and color: clearly labeled as being beetroot, turmeric root, and spirulina
- Vegetable stearic acid: a fatty acid found in vegetable fats
- Organic rice hull concentrate: an anti-caking ingredient that meets clean-label requirements (a much better alternative to silicon dioxide)
- Malic acid: an alpha-hydroxy acid found in various fruits and vegetables
- Vegetable magnesium stearate: a simple salt made of magnesium and stearic acid; used as a binder/anti-caking agent
Hiya has gone above and beyond to pick clean alternatives to cheaper, more widely available ingredients.
I also commend Hiya for telling us where the natural flavors and colors come from. Brands are not required to disclose that, but Hiya does, and we can see that the natural ingredients are truly natural: beetroot, turmeric root, and spirulina.
Flinstones’ list of additional ingredients is long and difficult to understand.
Here’s a look at some of the more concerning ingredients:
- Natural and Artificial flavoring: there’s no telling what’s being used to flavor these vitamins, but we know that at least part of it is chemically produced in a lab
- Dyes like Red 40, Blue 2, and Yellow 6: there’s too much to unpack here but to start, Red 40 is made from petroleum and has recently been linked to hyperactivity, including ADHD (Cleveland Clinic)
- Silicon dioxide: above, I mentioned that Hiya chose a clean alternative to silicon dioxide, but we can see that Flinstones did not; some agencies are calling for stricter guidelines on this ingredient (Medical News Today)
- Pregelatinized starch: could come from wheat (Reader’s Digest), meaning those with sensitivity to gluten should consider avoiding it
It’s blatantly obvious that Hiya is the winner for having a clean vitamin with top-of-the-line ingredients.
The Takeaway: The vitamins list looks almost the same on the surface, but Hiya chooses the most bioavailable form of its vitamins, whereas Flinstones does not.
Flinstones also includes an alarming amount of Iron, which could lead to iron toxicity if a child accidentally ingests a handful of vitamins. Flinstones also is not suitable for those avoiding gluten or animal products.
Here is a look at what’s inside the Flinstones and Hiya vitamins:
✓(33% as beta carotene)
✓ (as retinyl palmitate and 46% beta carotene)
✓ (as calcium ascorbate and acerola fruit)
✓ (as cholecalciferol)
✓ (as vegan cholecalciferol)
✓ (as d-alpha-tocopherol from sunflower oil)
Vitamin K (as menaquinone-7)
Vitamin B1 (thiamin)
✓ (from organic quinoa sprouts)
Vitamin B2 (as riboflavin)
✓ (from organic quinoa sprouts)
✓ (folic acid)
✓ (as L-5-MTHF-Ca & from organic quinoa sprouts)
✓ (as MeCbl & from organic quinoa sprouts)
✓ (from organic quinoa sprouts)
✓ (as Vitamin B5 & from organic quinoa sprouts)
Calcium (as calcium carbonate)
Iodine (as potassium iodide)
✓ (zinc oxide)
✓ (as zinc citrate)
Selenium (as selenomethionine)
Manganese (as manganese citrate)
Both lists of included vitamins are pretty similar, though there are a few differences worth pointing out and unpacking.
The biggest consideration for me is bioavailability, and Flinstones falls pretty short.
Bioavailability of Flinstones vs Hiya
Bioavailability: how much of a particular nutrient is absorbed and utilized in the body.
If a supplement is not absorbed into the body, you’re paying for nothing, so bioavailability is really important!
Hiya’s Vitamin A comes in two forms, one of which is retinyl palmitate. Retinyl palmitate is one of the most bioavailable forms of Vitamin A because it’s already in the format that our body can absorb.
Vitamin A as beta carotene needs to go through a conversion step to be absorbed, making it a less desirable form of Vitamin A. Flinstones only has beta carotene.
Vitamin C as ascorbate acid is best absorbed when it’s paired with a bioflavinoid, such as acerola cherry. Hiya has this powerful combo, whereas Flinstones does not.
Folate in the form of 5-methyltetrahydrofolate (5-THF) is more bioavailable than folic acid. And you probably guessed it at this point – Hiya’s folate comes in the more bioavailable form, whereas the Flintstones vitamin does not.
If you want a vitamin for your toddler that’s of the highest quality and is very intentional about including vitamins in forms that you can absorb the best, Hiya is the clear winner.
Other Vitamin Differences
Another difference between Hiya and Flinstones that I thought was noteworthy is the D3 form.
Hiya’s Vitamin D3 comes from vegan cholecalciferol, whereas Flinstone’s Vitamin D3 is just cholecalciferol – not vegan.
We can infer from this that Hiya uses seaweed to obtain its Vitamin D3 whereas Flinstones uses lanolin, or the secretions from the sebaceous glands of sheep. Other than sounding kind of gross, this means Flinstones is not vegan.
Hiya has several other vitamins that First Day does not, including Manganese, which supports metabolism, Selenium, which supports sleep and mood, and Zinc, which supports the immune system.
However, Flinstones also has a few things that Hiya does not, such as Iron, Niacin, and B6. The inclusion of Iron is important to note because Hiya does not include Iron for a reason.
The potential downside of iron toxicity from kids accidentally eating too many vitamins may not be worth the limited upside, especially considering most kids get enough iron from diet alone.
A child typically needs under 15mg of iron daily, and too much iron can lead to side effects like:
- Stomach discomfort
- High blood sugar
For reference, the Flinstones vitamin has 18mg of Iron. That’s honestly concerning to me. If your child gets their hands on the vitamin bottle and takes a handful, you could have a serious problem on your hands.
In nearly every way, Hiya has the better vitamin formulation.
The Takeaway: Hiya’s vitamins taste like fruit. Flinstones vitamins have such a strong iron taste that I found them inedible.
I tried both of these vitamins as a parent, and woah – the taste/flavor profile of these is probably the biggest distinction of all.
Hiya’s vitamins have a very natural, fruity flavor. They’re definitely chalky, which isn’t the best “mouthfeel,” but that’s just the nature of a chewable vitamin like this.
The Flinstones vitamins reek of iron, and I found it unpalatable. The flavor of it is so offputting that I spit it out and rinsed out my mouth with water.
I had my husband try it, too, and his reaction was the same. He expected the cleaner vitamin to taste worse, but the Flinstones vitamin had him scrunching up his face.
You can see his reaction in the second half of this TikTok video I made:
There is nothing natural tasting about the Flintstones vitamin. It tastes completely artificial, and the iron is so overpowering that I can’t imagine having to take this every day.
This one goes to Hiya.
The Takeaway: I had my kids try Flinstones and Hiya back-to-back and asked if they liked it or did not like it. Both gave the Flinstones a thumbs down and Hiya a thumbs up.
If your toddler or child doesn’t eat the vitamin, you’re out of luck.
I had my kids try Flinstones and Hiya back-to-back to compare the flavor.
I gave them zero prompting – I simply handed them the Flinstones vitamin and asked if they liked it or thought it was gross. Then, we did the same thing with the Hiya vitamin.
You can see their reactions in this TikTok video:
As my daughter started chewing the Flinstones vitamin, I could see she was not enjoying the taste. She did finish the vitamin but quickly gave it a thumbs down and said she did not like it. My son did the same thing, though I suspect he was just copying her.
I then gave them the Hiya vitamin and asked if they liked it or did not like it.
Their reaction was totally opposite with Hiya – they both smiled and gave it an enthusiastic thumbs up.
Hiya gets the win when it comes to the vitamin your toddler is more likely to accept and take willingly.
The Takeaway: These vitamins have nearly the same chewable/chalky texture, similar to Tums.
Both Hiya and Flinstones vitamins have a chewable texture, but are they any different?
Honestly, the texture of these vitamins is basically the same. I found the Flinstones vitamin to be slightly chalkier, but they are nearly identical in texture and the difference is too subtle to really matter.
So in the texture department, these are a tie.
Packaging and Sustainability
The Takeaway: Hiya gives you a refillable glass jar to use with refill packets each month. Flinstones comes in a plastic bottle.
Hiya has incredible packaging that promotes sustainability and less waste.
Your first purchase of Hiya vitamins comes with a reusable vitamin container. After that, you get refill packets that you pour into the same vitamin container.
Flinstones vitamins do not come with any kind of reusable bottle, so you do have to toss a vitamin bottle each time you purchase a new one.
In the packaging department, Hiya gets the clear win.
The Takeaway: Flintstones is dirt cheap compared to Hiya. Hiya is about 10x the price of Flinstones after any discounts end.
One of the more important factors when comparing kids’ vitamins is the price. These are monthly commitments, after all.
Flinstones definitely wins on price as their 180-tablet bottle is a 6-month supply for just $17.49. Toddlers ages 2-3 are only supposed to have a half tablet, so for them, one bottle is actually a year’s supply. That may raise questions about potency, but that’s a topic for another day.
Hiya’s 1-month supply is $30, which makes it about 10x more expensive than Flinstones.
Hiya does offer 50% off your first order, which makes it $15 to give it a try.
After the initial discount ends, here’s a price comparison chart for a 30-day supply:
$28 per child
$25 per child
$24 per child
$23 per child
The obvious winner in the price department is Flinstones.
The Takeaway: They’re basically the same!
Both Hiya and Flinstones are for ages 2+, so this one is a quick and easy tie!
Which Kids’ Vitamin Brand Wins?
I’ve compared everything from taste to price to the ingredients, and a winner has emerged: Hiya!
The only area where Flinstones shines is price, but it’s clear that you get what you pay for. The format of the vitamins is lackluster, they taste horrible, and who wants Red 40 in their kid’s vitamin?!
There’s a reason Hiya is so widely loved by parents and pediatricians. My family has used and loved Hiya for a long time, and it’s the brand we continue to order from.
It gives me peace of mind, my kids love it, and it checks all the boxes.
Don’t forget to snag 50% off your first order!