VITAMIN A – RETINOL – RETINOIDS - BAKUCHIOL
Retinol is one of the best-known skin care ingredients on the market. An over-the-counter (OTC) version of retinoids, retinol is derived (made from) Vitamin A and is primarily used to treat mature-looking skin concerns as well as acne. Whilst Retinol is the go-to ingredient in many consumers’ anti-aging regimens, a new study reveals that Bakuchiol is just as effective—with less skin scaling and stinging. The research, published in the British Journal of Dermatology, showed that both bakuchiol and retinol equally decreased wrinkle surface area and hyperpigmentation.
Nature’s Retinol: 3 Skin Benefits of Bakuchiol
Retinol is one of those ingredients that has fantastic benefits like improving skin texture, reducing fine lines and wrinkles and evening out hyperpigmentation, but can also be a little more challenging to work with. Even more, some clients tend to be too nervous to even give it a go because of the possibility for it to cause redness irritation, peeling and sensitivity. One ingredient that hit the spotlight in response to this is bakuchiol, also deemed “nature’s retinol.” Bakuchiol is a plant-based chemical compound mainly isolated from Psoralea corylifolia, or babchi, a plant used in Ayurvedic and Traditional Chinese Medicine. Bakuchiol is more than just a retinol-alternative. In fact, scientists have been taking it seriously, researching its various beneficial properties in skin’s overall health. Here’s a look at three scientifically backed benefits of bakuchiol.
1. Alternative Vitamin A Solution for Sensitive Skin
There’s a reason bakuchiol is touted as nature’s less-irritating version of retinol. It has soothing, anti-inflammatory and anti-bacterial properties that help to comfort skin and minimise issues associated with sensitivity and reactivity. It can also be used on sensitive skin types with present eczema/atopic dermatitis, rosacea and cosmetic intolerance syndrome.
2. Slows Photo-Aging Process
According to research, bakuchiol has the potential to stop photo-aging before it starts, when applied topically. Clinically, bakuchiol is shown to improve signs of the photo-aging process, which includes fine lines, wrinkles, uneven skin tone and hyperpigmentation, to a degree comparable to retinol, even after UV exposure. Plus, it works by increasing cell turnover (just like retinol), but it doesn’t have the same sensitising effects that retinol does including flaking and peeling. In turn, it stimulates collagen production and improves skin laxity and bounce.
3. Can Ward Off Cancer-Causing Cells
Besides being used as a cosmetic ingredient for its antioxidant, anti-aging, and acne-reducing effects, studies also show that bakuchiol has chemo-preventive properties that inhibit and suppress the proliferation of skin cancer cells by targeting Hck, Blk, and p38 MAP kinase (enzymes that speed up chemical reactions in the body).
MAIN BENEFITS: Wrinkle reduction, increases skin firmness, and reduces the appearance of pores.
WHO SHOULD USE IT: Generally, bakuchiol is safe for all skin types.
HOW OFTEN CAN YOU USE IT: It’s safe to use it twice a day, in the morning before moisturizer and at night before any serums.
WORKS WELL WITH: Other hydrating ingredients, like squalane and PHAs.
Several additional benefits of bakuchiol include: antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, antibacterial, anti-tumor, hepatoprotective, caspase-3-dependent apoptosis, melanin inhibition and more. Previously, in vivo studies had not compared the two compounds for efficacy or side effects, but the present results suggest bakuchiol offers a natural and safer alternative.
Sounds good, right? Well, as previously mentioned, bakuchiol is not only as effective as retinol at targeting fine lines, wrinkles, and uneven skin tone; it’s also less irritating. Much like a retinol, bakuchiol triggers the genetic pathway in skin cells to create several types of collagen that are useful in skin health and anti-aging. However, it doesn’t cause stubborn dryness or irritation. Plus, unlike retinol, which can make the skin more sensitive to the sun (always make sure to wear SPF during the day), bakuchiol may actually help to make skin less sensitive to the sun’s harmful rays.