Review: The Inkey List – Bakuchiol Moisturiser (And what is Bakuchiol / What does it do?)

Where to purchase: Available on the Inkey List Website HERE

Price: £9.99

Volume: 30ml

Made in: UK

What is it?: Moisturising Cream containing 1% Bakuchiol.

What is Bakuchiol?: Plant derived ingredient meant to be a Retinol alternative. Has antioxidant qualities and helps reduce the look of fine lines + wrinkles + even out the skin tone. Doesn’t cause sun sensitivity + can be used when pregnant. Also can be used in both the AM and PM.

Brand Description: This moisturising Cream contains Omega-3 (good for the skin barrier) loaded Sacha Inchi oil + Squalane. The aim is to hydrate + nourish the skin.

Supposedly Good for: Normal Skin + To reduce the look of Fine Lines + Wrinkles

What I think: I would agree Normal – Dry skins would like this. I think even Combo Skins could use this during the winter as a Moisturiser (not so watery BUT it is a lightweight oil-based cream). Also I think this is great as an anti-acne or anti-ageing routine supplement (not to replace Retinol / BHA but enhance).


Vegan?: Yes

Cruelty Free?: Yes

Pregnancy and Breast feeding Safe?: Yes

Packaging: (Recyclable). Plastic Tube with a screw top cap. Gets tricky when product starts running out (i.e. I squeeze, shake and squeeze to have to get the remnants out – I end up cutting the tube).

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Directions: ”Use in the AM and PM. Apply a pea-sized amount onto cleansed face + neck. Use after serums.” (From the Inkey List Website).

How I use it: I use this as a PM Moisturiser (I have oily-combo skin and it’s now summer). I use it after serums and find that I don’t need to use a moisturiser after. I like to use this in the same routine as my Granactive Retinoid Emulsion from The Ordinary OR my Geek&Gorgeous Exfoliating Liquid (Review HERE).

Key Ingredients: 1% Bakuchiol + 1.5% Plukenetia Volubilis Seed Oil (Sacha Inchi Oil). This is an emollient plant, it contains Fatty acids and Vitamin E. It is rich in α-Linolenic acid (42-49%). 3% Squalane (Skin-barrier reinforcing).

What’s the deal with Bakuchiol?: Bakuchiol is a ”Phyto-Retinol” I.e. it is not related to retinol but behaves like retinol. It is an antioxidant, it’s antibacterial and is cell-communicating.

Studies: Bakuchiol comes from a plant. It is also anti-inflammatory. Bakuchiol increases collagen production in the skin and also reduces the creation of an enzyme in the skin which breaks down collagen. So it’s thought to help keep the skin looking firmer and help improve the look of wrinkles. A study was done using 0.5% Bakuchiol (this product contains 1% remember) on 17 people (not that many people please remember) who applied this for 12 weeks and they said they saw an improvement in their lines and wrinkles. Another study was done that was a double blind (meaning the subjects and the applicators didn’t know what product was a placebo and what product had the product) tested/compared a 0.5% Bakuchiol cream and 0.5% retinol. The study showed that the retinol and bakuchiol both seemed to provide photoageing protection to the skin after 12 weeks of use (i.e. reduce oxidation of the skin).

  • The good thing about Bakuchiol is that there is little to no irritation. Overall, Retinol has much more research + studies done on it whereas Bakuchiol (as you can see from the above) has fewer studies and test groups + methods. However I’m sure there will be more studies and work on this ingredient in the future. Retinol seems to be more reliable as an anti-ageing agent right now, but Bakuchiol shouldn’t be knocked! It works well with Retinol hence why it would be great to use alongside Retinol in an anti-ageing routine.
  • This is also because Bakuchiol is supposedly good at stabilising Retinol (hence why the two work well together).
  • Personally I use it with my Granactive Retinoid 2% Emulsion and find it to be a great pairing (very emollient though, hence why I use in the evening). And have had no irritation / sensitivity.

Bakuchiol + Acne?: Bakuchiol reduces the acne causing bacteria on the skin and also reduces excess sebum production. It can also reduce lipid oxidation in the skin (which may apparently be an early trigger of pimple formation). 1% of Bakuchiol (also in this product) seems to be good at reducing acne (after 6 weeks of use = 57% decrease in acne). HOWEVER (like retinol), Bakuchiol works better paired with another active ingredient. SO on it’s own the decrease was 57% but with 2% Salicylic Acid, there was a 67% decrease in acne after 6 weeks of application.

Pigmentation?: More research + studies need to be done on this but it’s suspected that Bakuchiol may also be good at skin hydration and reducing pigmentation.

Sources: HERE / HERE / HERE and HERE / HERE

Is Bakuchiol a Retinol/BHA replacement?: No, but it’s a good supplement!


Full Ingredients: Aqua (Water/ Eau), Squalane, Glycerin, Propanediol, Plukenetia Volubilis Seed Oil (Sacha Inchi oil), Dicaprylyl Carbonate, Bakuchiol,Phenoxyethanol, Sodium Caproyl Prolinate, Hydroxyethyl Acrylate/ Sodium Acryloyldimethyl Taurate Copolymer, Carbomer, Sodium Hydroxide, Ethylhexylglycer-in, Sodium Stearoyl Glutamate, Polysorbate 60, Phytic Acid, Glyceryl Polyacrylate, Sorbitan Isostearate, Tocopherol.

NOTE: The Incidecoder have a full ingredient breakdown HERE

Texture: A nice, creamy yet lightweight texture (as you can see below). This is easy to spread and absorbs nicely into the skin. This isn’t sticky/tacky or heavy. It may be greasy to oily skins however so be careful (and I wouldn’t use this in the AM, but as a PM moisturiser, due to the emollient-nature of this product).

This is layerable and doesn’t ball up.

In terms of the Oil:Water Balance, this is more on the Oil side than water – so this is more a cream than a gel.

As you can see, this has a milky, cream-like texture.


Hopefully you can see the thinness of this product. It’s not a heavy oily product, but it is an oil-y product.


As you can see the skin looks moisturised! Also when this has dried down, it doesn’t ball up or pill.

Summer or Winter?: This is an emollient (more Oil>Water Ratio) so I prefer to use this in the PM regardless of season (a bit too oily for me to use in the AM) but great in the PM, paired with a retinol or my Cheer Up Exfoliating Liquid in One routine.

Video – Live Swatch

Fragrance?: No added fragrance HOWEVER this smells like Mint-flavoured toothpaste to me – so you need to either like the smell of mint or not be bothered by it in order to use this.

Good Under Makeup?: Yes it’s fine. But I wouldn’t recommend oily skins use this under makeup (no oil control and the product itself is oil-based).

How long have I been using this?: Until completion and repurchased (about 3 months).

The Effect?: Moisturised skin that doesn’t get sensitised or seemingly irritated. In terms of Fine Lines + Wrinkles and/or acne: This has helped improved the tone and texture of the skin. I use this paired with BHA/AHA and/or a Retinoid, and what I expect is an assisted ”boost” with Bakuchiol, which I think this provides. 1% is a good amount to get some results in, but of course I’ve had to continuously use this for 3 months to see the results. My blackheads haven’t been erased by the Bakuchiol, but my skin’s condition hasn’t been made worse by the Bakuchiol.

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What I like:

  • Didn’t sting or irritate my skin
  • Moisturising
  • A good Retinoid / BHA supplement/partner.
  • No fragrance / Essential oils
  • Although more ”oily’, it’s lightweight.
  • Layerable (didn’t ball up).

What I don’t like:

  • That minty smell isn’t my favourite
  • The tube packaging makes it kind of hard to get all the product out when I reach close to the end.
  • A bit too emollient for me to use in the AM (Oil>Water).

Overall Rating and Conclusion: 4/5 – A good evening moisturiser! Didn’t sting/irritate. Good supplement and works well with my routine of reducing fine lines/wrinkles, reduce sebum production + evens pigmentation. Of course, I would prefer the texture to be more watery and less emollient (I like hydration), so I do feel more comfortable wearing this in the PM.

Would I repurchase?: Yes. I’ve already repurchased as it’s a lightweight cream and I like the promising effects of Bakuchiol!

Dupe?: Personally I think this is the best Bakuchiol product I’ve used so far, however another Bakuchiol product I have recently tested/tried out is from Typology! It’s their Blemish Bakuchiol Serum (Also contains 1% Bakuchiol) HERE. In terms of texture, a close dupe is the Dear Klairs Fundamental Water Gel Cream or the Indeed Labs Ceramide Cream.

If you want to hear more about Bakuchiol, how it works and the effects – then I highly recommend you check out the video below where I discuss the Bakuchiol Blemish Serum from Typology.

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My Skin Type: I am acne prone and have slightly dehydrated combo skin. My skin is usually tight where the cheeks and eye area is and the outer parts of my face. My T zone is oily. My skin isn’t a fan of thick/heavy formulas so I opt for lightweight formulas to prevent it from clogging up. My skin doesn’t like essential oils either and I try to avoid fragrance when I can.

Disclaimer: I am a skincare enthusiast and not a skin expert. I am not qualified to give out dermatological advice. This type of advice should only be given by a medical practitioner. Upon trying / using any of the reviewed products on the blog, please follow the manufacturer’s instructions and warnings and please seek medical advice if needed.

Note: I earn a small commission when you purchase through affiliate links, which helps me purchase products for review + also help improve the Blog! If you would like to support me, thank you ever so much! and if not, that’s fine – I hope you enjoy my posts! 


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