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Bacuchiol – the “vitamin” of youth

Bacuchiol – the “vitamin” of youth

The fact that bakuchiol is a plant substitute for retinol can be considered a truism. After several years of existence on the cosmetics market everyone already knows it. In the article we will try to present the facts about this plant and its beneficial properties.


The progress lies in the fact that we are looking for better and better solutions in all areas of life – better, which means more effective, cheaper, healthier and greener. Cosmetic laboratories are also concentrating their energies on this task. In an era of huge popularity of natural, plant-based, vegan cosmetics, thousands of plant ingredients are being explored, often known for centuries, used by mankind since the beginning of civilization for various ailments and diseases. Thus, among other things, it has been noted that a popular herb used in traditional Chinese and Ayurvedic medicine, derived from the Psoralea corylifolia plant (common name: babuchi), is a functional analogue of retinol. What does this mean? Well, the bakuchiol molecule, having no structural similarity to retinoids, can act as a functional analog of retinol through the similarity of the effect on gene expression, leading to the improvement of skin photodamage.


Everyone knows how effective and multidirectional action retinoids have on our skin. They reduce the signs of skin ageing by smoothing wrinkles thanks to the stimulation of collagen and elastin synthesis, lighten hyperpigmentation and have anti-inflammatory effects, which is very important in the fight against acne lesions. They also show antioxidant activity by fighting free radicals. Everyone also knows that during retinoid therapy it is important to be careful with the sun due to its phototoxicity, and that possible side effects such as redness, irritation, itching or flaking of the skin must be taken into account.


In 2017, the following study was conducted at the Department of Dermatology at the University of California: for 12 weeks, two groups of probands applied a cream with 0.5% bacuchiol and 0.5% retinol twice a day. The study was randomized, i.e. the probants received the creams in a random and double-blind manner, so that both the researcher and the probants did not know what they were testing. To compare the effects, high-resolution photographs, dermatological assessment and a survey among probands were conducted. The results were as follows: both bacuchiol and retinol significantly reduced the surface of wrinkles and lightened hyperpigmentation, it was not possible to observe whether either preparation was more effective. The probands using retinol further reported a problem with flaking of the skin. This leads to the conclusion that the effect of bacchiol is comparable to that of retinol in the fight against skin ageing, in addition, bakuchiol is better tolerated and does not cause side effects.


Since then, bacuchiol, which is one of the latest discoveries in anti-wrinkle and anti-acne care, has had a dizzying career in cosmetology, and it is worth noting that we have a huge range of products on the market with this ingredient.


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