Weekly dose of microtrends that will shape our future
Featured beauty Cosmetics

Bakuchiol: How this new ingredient is taking on Retinol

by Jack LeeHoffman

Edited by Christian Thompson

Happy Friday, and welcome back to this week’s Inflection Point. This week, we’re covering a skincare alternative ingredient to retinol. Bakuchiol is a plant-derived alternative that claims to be better for sensitive skin. Let’s dive into our platform’s insights about this ingredient.

NWO.ai's signal for "Bakuchiol."

There is no denying the popularity or effectiveness of retinol. The ingredient is found in skincare routines worldwide, but it has one downfall: skin irritation. People with sensitive skin struggle with retinol, which can dry and irritate the skin. Retinol has many benefits, including anti-aging, exfoliation, and minimizing breakouts. However, these benefits do not outweigh the con of dry and irritated skin for many consumers. Enter: bakuchiol, a powerful plant-based ingredient ideal for sensitive skin. Bakuchiol comes from the babchi plant. The ingredient helps soothe, heal, and restore skin due to its anti-inflammatory and antibacterial properties. Over the past two years, the impact score for “Bakuchiol” has increased by 354%. The future estimate predicts sustained exponential growth in the coming months. It is no question that the consumer energy surrounding bakuchiol is growing, but what is driving this growth, and how does it compare to retinol?

The driving factor behind bakuchiol's growth is consumers with sensitive skin. In a 2019 study, researchers found no difference between retinol and bakuchiol when treating wrinkles and hyperpigmentation. However, the retinol users experienced more dryness and skin irritation, indicating that sensitive skin has been the driving factor behind bakuchiol’s growth. Over the past two years, the impact score for “Bakuchiol” in the context of “Sensitive Skin” has increased by 287%. Our platform forecasts continued growth for signal. The absolute impact score comparison of “Bakuchiol” and “Retinol” shows that “Bakuchiol” is outpacing “Retinol” in total volume on the platform. We have established why “Bakuchiol” is trending, but what products stand to gain from the ingredient’s growth?

NWO.ai's comparison of "Bakuchiol Serum," "Bakuchiol Cream," "Bakuchiol Oil," and "Bakuchiol Cleanser." 

While there is a large variety of bakuchiol products, we looked at four of the most popular. Serums, creams, oils, and cleansers are all essential to a complete skincare routine. These products allow users to clean, revitalize, and restore their skin to achieve a clear and healthy look. We compared these product categories to see where bakuchiol has the most influence. The comparison above is over the past two years, and “Bakuchiol Serum” not only has the highest volume on the platform compared to the other signals, but also has the highest relative increase of 330%. In second, there is a tie between “Bakuchiol Cream” and "Bakuchiol Oil.” “Bakuchiol Cleanser” finishes last and has the lowest two year relative increase of 25%. This comparison illustrates that moisturizing and nourishing products, such as serums, creams, and oils, containing bakuchiol outperform harsher cleansing products. This is because the benefits of bakuchiol are more tailored towards restoration and hydration. Nourishing and anti-aging products stand to gain the most from bakuchiol’s growth. We believe this natural and vegan retinol alternative will continue to grow and impact the beauty and cosmetics industry.

Thank you for reading this week’s Inflection Point. We hope you enjoyed learning about growing skincare trends and how they will impact the future. Tune in next week and as always, have a great weekend.


About NWO.ai
NWO.ai's predictive platform enables leading Fortune 500 companies and government agencies to anticipate and track global cultural shifts by aggregating, analyzing, and producing actionable reports on human-generated data. We are leveraging petabytes of external, noisy, and unstructured data from various sources including search, social media, blogs, news, patent databases, and SEC filings and we are continuously adding more sources. Our mission is to answer the what, when, and most importantly, 'why' behind a consumer trend and enable our customers to detect these shifts as early as possible.

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