• Jessica

The Clean Retinol Alternative for Summer Just Dropped

Updated: Jul 2, 2019

Let's hear it for Bakuchiol.

Photo via Herbivore via Autumn PR

Today is the day that the vegan beauty company Herbivore, which just turned eight, launches their brand spankin' new Bakuchiol serum. The all-natural retinol alternative is nature's strongest swap for the dermatologist-beloved anti-aging ingredient. Ayurveda-derived Bakuchiol is even more effective at cell turnover and smoothing fine lines than rosehip oil, as I learned from the founder of the luxury skincare Omorovicza.


The sensitive skin-friendly, plant-based skincare launch works its retinoic magic using PHA acids, or polyhydroxy acids. As Bakuchiol mimics retinol's function of promoting cell turnover (i.e. speeding up the production of skin cells, thereby fading scars and boosting elasticity), ingredients like tremella mushroom, amethyst extract, and blueberry stem cells buffer the dermis from irritation.

Since it's free of synthetics and fragrances, your chance of reactions is already reduced. But if you're paranoid about skin reactions, consider using your retinoid along with an anti-inflammatory ingredient like CBD, which also comes in their Emerald facial oil.


Whether you use a prescription-strength retinoid or an over-the-counter skincare product, many skin experts — including an A-list makeup artist I know — suggest discontinuing the use of the photosensitizing ingredient during the summer months. Why? Because photosensitivity means your skin will be more sensitive to UV rays, risking sun damage, hyper-pigmentation, and premature wrinkles.


My dermatologist, Dr. Ray Jalian of Rebecca Fitzgerald MD, does believe you can still use retinol safely in the summer. Just never scrimp on your reef-safe SPF, remember to reapply every hour and a half (brush-on SPF is perfect for touch-ups), and consider investing UPF-protective clothing, like my trending, budget-friendly Amazon sunhat.


Shop their new serum at www.herbivorebotanicals.com (and get a free mini Phoenix facial oil) or order it from Sephora beginning June 27th. To check out a few more of the new launches and beauty products I'm testing, do so here.


Have you tried Bakuchiol? Tell me on Instagram.

No affiliate links in this bad boy. Shop away!

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