Reading the ingredient list on the side of a skincare bottle can be quite intimidating and mind-boggling. The ingredients usually include big words you’ve never seen before that naturally make you question whether or not you should put them on your sacred skin.

So many proven skincare ingredients that we love don’t have user-friendly names, but that doesn’t mean they don’t have user-friendly powers. We’re sharing the ingredients you shouldn’t fear, but rather bookmark as safe and effective.

Bakuchiol - A.K.A, Nature’s Retinol

Big word, bigger benefits. Bakuchiol is derived from the babchi plant, often used in Indian and Chinese traditional medicine. This ingredient works to stimulate collagen production, which we can all appreciate because it reduces the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. It also has an incredible soothing effect on the skin, making it great for those with sensitivities. If you see this ingredient, give the product a go.

Tocopherol - A.K.A, Vitamin E

This funky ingredient is not nearly as funky as it sounds. Tocopherol is simply vitamin E at its core. Its anti-inflammation and hydrating abilities are second to none as it works to strengthen and smooth the skin barrier. Tocopherol targets redness, which makes it a key ingredient in treating a variety of skin concerns. Don’t fret if you see this term ending in ‘acetate’ because all this means is that it was made with lab-love.

Citric Acid - A.K.A, pH Balance for Skincare Formulation

We know what you’re thinking: Does it burn? While citric acid is found in citrus fruits, it’s an essential ingredient used to stop formulas from being too alkaline. Our skin is naturally slightly acidic, so it can be compromised when faced with the wrong formulas. Citric acid’s job is to make sure the mix of ingredients in a formula doesn’t throw our skin out of whack. Packed with antioxidants, this ingredient can also protect your skin from environmental stressors and everyday toxins depending on the concentration in the formula.

Luma & Leaf | Natural, Hydrating Skincare Powered by Plants

Tetrapeptide-21 - A.K.A, Collagen’s Muse

One of our best-kept skin-aging secrets. Tetrapeptide-21 specializes in reducing factors of skin aging by increasing collagen expression and elasticity, and improving the appearance of wrinkles. It tricks the skin into producing more protein for the repair and rebuild process. A true work of art, if you ask us.

Acacia Decurrens Flower Wax - A.K.A, Soft Skin Central

Museum or proven skincare ingredient? Definitely the latter! Acacia decurrens flower wax is derived from a Mimosa flower. It’s used in skincare products to protect and give a boost of added hydration. When it comes to formulating a perfect product, a lot of the time Acacia decurrens flower wax is used to soften the formula’s texture. As if flowers couldn’t get any more perfect.

Tetrahexyldecyl Ascorbate - A.K.A, A Shot of Vitamin C

Not to be confused with a fossil, this vitamin C derivative is 50x more potent than L-ascorbic acid. Unlike pure vitamin C, tetrahexyldecyl ascorbate is very stable and gives us no cause for concern in terms of oxidation. And because of its oil-solubility, it’s incredibly gentle on sensitive skin. Music to our ears!

Gluconolactone - A.K.A, A Gentle Exfoliant

This five-syllable tongue twister has more than five benefits for skin. It works to improve skin texture and tone, boosts hydration, and even has some antioxidant properties as the cherry on top. Gluconolactone is considered a PHA, which is another class of exfoliants similar to AHAs and BHAs. It’s safe for all skin types and plays nice with most ingredients. We can definitely get behind a gentle exfoliant.

All of the above are proven skincare ingredients that are far from scary. As a plant-powered skincare brand, we look to these earth-bearing ingredients to heal and enhance our skin the natural way. We’d never steer you in the other direction - Mother Nature knows best.