The Best Alternatives to Retinol That Actually Work

We know you love retinol. What’s not to love? It is a miraculous anti-aging agent and reduces sun damage, acne, pores and fine lines simultaneously. It also gives you an even texture and complexion by stimulating new blood vessels. If our beauty routine was a superhero movie, retinol is said superhero.

But as functional as retinol is, it has been known to cause skin troubles, mainly because it is formulated with a strong chemical blend. Retinol is an over-the-counter version of retinoid, a chemical compound related to vitamin A. Retinoids are one of the very few agents proven to actively slow down aging by producing more collagen and reversing sun damage.

But skin specialists and estheticians often steer clear of retinol, especially if their patients have super sensitive skin or have skin ailments like rosacea. As more and people are leaning toward gentler, and preferably plant-based skin formulas and treatments, retinol might be losing some of its charm.

An ideal retinol replacement would be exactly as versatile and effective, only gentler. Enter bakuchiol, often called “herbal Botox.” It is a naturally occurring antioxidant derived from the babchi plant that is taking the beauty industry by storm. Besides bakuchiol, there are also several other alternatives to retinol you should try out.

Here, the gentle-but-effective alternatives to replace your harsh (but beloved) retinol.

[ Next: 10 Body Washes That Won’t Irritate Your Sensitive Skin ]