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Bakuchiol has been on the market for years, yet its popularity reached a new level in 2019 with the publication in British journal of Dermatology where it was compared to retinol in a double-blind clinical study.

Nominated by Mintel among the top 3 skincare ingredients to trend in 2019 in beyond, how to explain this success?

How Does Bakuchiol work?

Gene expression profile is now considered to be a molecular signature of a compound. A simple comparative microarray experiment side by side with Retinol and The Bakuchiol do not have close structural similarities, yet exhibit a similar pattern of activity on certain key anti-aging genes and proteins.

The University of California performed a double-blind clinical study on 44 volunteers comparing pure Bakuchiol (Sytenol™ A) and retinol, both used in a cream at the same concentration (0.5%).

The study showed that the two active ingredients performed similarly in terms of photoaging (59% reduction in hyperpigmentation after 12 weeks).

However, bakuchiol is much better tolerated by the skin, particularly when it comes to stinging and desquamation (significant differences in comparison with retinol).

UC Davis ultimately concluded that bakuchiol could effectively improve the signs of ageing in the skin and Bakuchiol is one alternative that is better tolerated by the skin than retinol.

After this publication in British Journal of Dermatology, Bakuchiol gained popularity over the media and was named among the trendiest ingredients in 2019 by Mintel.

The Science behind this magical ingredient .

In terms of chemical structures, Bakuchiol is different from retinol.

But at the gene level, Bakuchiol and retinol have similar molecular signatures.

First, it is a retinol-alternative, it stimulates key anti-aging genes like the :

  • Retinoid Binding & Metabolizing Genes

  • Extracellular Matrix Genes

  • Dermo-epidermal Junction Genes

Also, it helps to slow down the aging process thanks to its antioxidant protection : Bakuchiol limits direct oxidative damage to the cells, proteins, and DNA.

It protects the extra cellular matrix and dermo-epidermal junction genes by reducing matrix metalloprotease (MMP) activity. Finally, it controls inflammation and therefore plays a role against inflam’aging.

What is Bakuchiol?

Bakuchiol is a 100% natural active ingredient obtained from the babchi seeds (psoralea corylifolia plant). Described as the true alternative to retinol, it presents striking resemblances with the performances of retinoids but is much gentler with the skin.

Where Does it come from?

The plant where Bakuchiol comes from, the Psoralea Corylifolia, is endemic to certain Asian countries such as India Himalayan regions of Pakistan and China.. It is a wild species that has been used in Ayurvedic medicine for centuries.

Is Bakuchiol Good for the Skin?

Bakuchiol, a gentle alternative to retinol, can be used for all types of skin: dry, oily or sensitive. Whether you want to maintain youthful skin or find an efficient solution for a radiant acne-free skin, Bakuchiol is the active ingredient you want to be looking for.

Bakuchiol is an option for both protective and restorative anti-aging, therefore it can be used to fight the first signs of aging but also to improve the quality of the skin already photodamaged.

In a clinical study, 16 volunteers, age 41 to 60, tested a lotion containing 1% of Bakuchiol. After 12 weeks, there was significant improvement in lines and wrinkles (-20% wrinkle depth), pigmentation, elasticity, firmness and overall photo-damage, with no irritating effect on skin.

Bakuchiol has been clinically proven to be more efficient that salicylic acid and to reduce acne by 48% after 6 weeks. It could be an ally for both teenagers with sensitive skin but also adults with oily skin.

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