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Rapidly Trending Topics, Insights, and Analysis. Update on February 23, 2022

Mandelic Acid

Mandelic acid is an alpha hydroxy acid used to exfoliate the skin.

This product is growing especially quickly on Amazon. For example, a popular mandelic acid by The Ordinary generates an estimated $13K per month on Amazon (AMZscout).

Paula’s Choice, By Wishtrend and Dear Klairs are trending startups that manufacture and sell mandelic acid.

What’s next

Mandelic acid is part of the beauty acid serum meta trend.

The alpha-hydroxy market is projected to exceed $3B by 2024.

And the overall hyaluronic acid market is estimated to increase by a CAGR of 8.1% through 2027, when it’s projected to surpass $16B.

Trending beauty acid serum brands include TruSkin, Cosmedica and Roc.

Let’s Enhance

Let’s Enhance is for improving and enhancing image quality using AI.

Specifically, the software enlarges (zooms) images without sacrificing quality.

The tool allows for zooming images up to 16x without graininess or blurriness.

The startup recently raised a $3M seed round last October.

What’s next

Let’s Enhance is part of the AI-powered multimedia creation meta trend.

The AI-powered multimedia creation market is estimated to be worth around $10B. And is still in its very early stages.

Lumen5 transforms articles and other text into video content. To date, the company has raised a total of $105K in funding and $4.8M annual revenue.

Quillbot is a paraphrasing tool capable of paraphrasing the same set of text
in 7 different ways. In total, the startup has raised $4.2M in funding.

KinetiX uses AI to understand uploaded videos. The startup has raised $600K in angel funding.

Period Pants

Period pants are super-absorbent pants that can be washed and reused.

The global period pants market is estimated to be $115.2M. The market is forecasted to grow at a CAGR of 28.2% and reach $495M by 2026.

Examples of trending brands selling period pants include Clovia, Knixwear and Modibodi.

What’s next

Period pants are part of the eco-friendly period products meta trend.

Period products generate more than 200,000 tons of waste each year.

Reusable tampon applicators, menstrual discs and night pads are trending eco-friendly period products.

Organicup, Intinima and Callaly are growing brands that manufacture eco-friendly period products.


CredFlow is a cash flow management SaaS startup.

The platform tracks payments received from buyers, sends buyers reminders about overdue payments, and predicts payment timelines based on past data.

CredFlow is currently used by over 550K businesses across India.

The platform has sent over 1M communications to debtors and has been used to generate over 24B invoices.

To date, the startup has raised $2M in one round of funding that valued the company at $6M.

What’s next

CredFlow is part of the cash flow management software meta trend.

The cash flow management software market is worth $367.5M. The market is forecast to grow at a CAGR of 24.9% and reach approximately $2.14B by 2028.

North America accounts for around 40% of the global market.

Projections show that cloud-based cash flow management software is expected to experience an even bigger CAGR (25.2%).

Credgenics, YayPay and Lockstep are trending startups operating in this sector.


Makgeolli is a traditional Korean alcoholic beverage also known as Rice Wine.

Increasing makgeolli consumption among young adults between the ages of 20 and 30 is largely driving the rapid growth of this market.

(In fact, the Korean makgeolli market recently reached $386M.)

Slow Village, Makku and Jinro are examples of trending makgeolli brands.

What’s next

Makgeolli is part of the East Asian alcoholic beverages meta trend.

Other examples of trending alcoholic beverages from East Asia include:

Soju is a Korean distilled alcoholic drink. The North American Soju market is estimated to grow at a CAGR of 7.32% and reach $361M by 2026.

Baijiu is a sorghum-based Chinese liquor. It is the most-consumed distilled spirit in the world by quantity.

Huangjiu, also known as yellow wine, is a fermented alcoholic drink made from rice, millet or wheat.


Searches for “FitXR” are up 2400% over the last 24 months.

What is it?

FitXR is a VR fitness app for the Oculus Quest.

The app follows a Peloton-like subscription membership model ($10 per month.)

And 11.5K users have joined the official FitXR member group on Facebook (almost 2x increase over the last 12 months).

The startup has raised a total of $8.8M in funding to date. FitXR reports that their latest raise will be used to expand operations in Europe and North America.

What’s next

FitXR is a part of the “fitness platform” meta trend.

While the category was propelled massively by the pandemic, many digital fitness platforms had strong retention rates even before COVID-19.

(For example, Peloton’s 11-month member retention rate was 73% pre-pandemic.)

And fitness apps have been downloaded 400M times in 2021 alone.

Here are a few examples of fast-growing startups in this category:

Bold: At-home fitness platform aimed at older adults. Programs are personalized based on a quiz that users take during onboarding. The startup raised a $7M seed round led by Andreessen Horowitz.

BlazePod: Fitness hardware and software designed for athletes. The platform comes with a number of predefined activities along with the option to create custom workouts. The Israeli startup raised $9.8M in funding to date.

VAHA: Smart fitness mirror. The company reports that they currently sell 1,000 mirrors per month (at over $2000 each). Like Peloton, VAHA has a monthly subscription model. The Berlin-based startup has raised funding across 3 rounds.

Lactation Massager

Lactation massagers are tools designed to improve milk flow.

42% of new mothers face milk flow issues, according to research by the UC Davis Medical Center. And lactation massagers are one of a growing number of technical solutions to this problem.

Annual global sales of lactation massagers have hit $179M. And this market is expected to grow at a CAGR of 5.3% through 2026.

There are now over 200 results for lactation massager on Amazon. And one type of lactation massager currently ranks 30th on Amazon’s list of best-selling breastfeeding supplies.

Emerging brands in this niche include Haakaa, Youha and Frida Mom.

What’s next

Lactation massager is part of the breastfeeding tech meta trend.

The global breastfeeding tech market size is currently estimated to be $1.6B. And the industry is expected to increase at a CAGR of 7.8% through 2026, growing to approximately $2.55B.

North America and Europe account for approximately 75% of the breastfeeding tech market size.

Nanobebe is a startup that manufactures breastmilk storage bags. The startup has raised $4.31M in funding to date (Pitchbook).

Momcozy is another surging breastfeeding tech company that produces breastfeeding aids. It currently offers 12 different products in its breastfeeding tech catalog.

Another trending brand is Elvie. They are known for their wearable breast pump products. To date, the startup has raised over $151.9M in funding.


LiveKit is an open-source platform that allows users to build live audio or video experiences into their apps or websites.

LiveKit users can build audio-only rooms that support up to 1,000 listeners or audio and video rooms with up to 400 viewers.

According to the project’s documentation, a room can be built with less than 100 lines of code.

What’s next

LiveKit is part of the open-source conferencing meta trend.

The open-source services market is estimated to experience a CAGR of 21.75% by 2026.

And open source conferencing projects are estimated to account for 8.1% of the entire market by 2026.

Jitsi, Wire and NextCloud are examples of open-source conferencing platforms that are currently trending.

Phone Charms

Searches for “phone charms” have increased by 4.25x over the last 24 months.

Phone charms are essentially “smartphone jewelry” that connect to a mobile device through a silicone plug or a phone connector.

Kendall Jenner, Gigi Hadid, Dua Lipa, and Miley Cyrus are celebrities who helped start this trend.

Overall, there are now over 20,000 results when searching for “Phone Charms” on Amazon.

And there are 1000+ results on Etsy.

What’s next

Phone charms are riding the handmade miniature novelty products meta trend.

The novelty items market is estimated to be worth approximately $16.33B and is projected to grow at a CAGR of 5% by 2023.

Chicken bath salts, sensory toys and designer coasters are more examples of trending miniature novelty items.


Podcastle is a Google Chrome extension that is used to help record in-browser podcast episodes.

While the startup claims to have 150,000 creators, the tool itself has 90,000 installs and a 4-star rating on the Chrome Web Store.

The company runs on a freemium business model, with three different subscription packages that give users access to more features.

Podcastle raised a $7M Series A round last October.

What’s next

Podcastle is part of the AI-powered multimedia creation meta trend.

The AI-powered multimedia creation market will be worth around $9.88B by the end of this year.

Let’s Enhance uses AI to improve image quality. The startup has raised $3M in seed funding to date.

KinetiX uses AI to automate much of the manual labor involved in animation. The venture has raised $600K in angel funding from Entre First.

Quillbot is a paraphrasing tool capable of paraphrasing the same set of text in 7 different ways. In total, the startup has raised $4.2M in funding.

Peptide Moisturizer

Peptide moisturizer is cream that supports natural collagen production in the skin.

A popular peptide moisturizer generates an estimated $31.3K per month on Amazon (AMZscout).

The Inkey List, Naturium and GoPure are trending startups that manufacture and sell peptide moisturizers.

What’s next

Peptide Moisturizers are part of the amino acid skin care meta trend.

The global skincare market is expected to hit $183B in sales by 2025 (Statista).

During this time frame, amino acid-based solutions are estimated to grow by approximately 2 percentage points faster than other solutions.

Growing amino acid skincare brands include Yeouth, EltaMD and QRxLabs.


Budibase is an open-source, low-code platform for building internal tools.

The platform’s toolkit consists of data (connections with data sources, user authentication), design (screen templates, conditional UI), and automation (triggers, integrations).

Deployment is available with Budibase hosting or via self-hosting.

Budibase has pre-built integrations with 23 tools, including Airtable, Zapier, and MongoDB.

The startup raised £300K in a seed funding round in 2020.

What’s next

Budibase is a part of the “low code tools for internal use” meta trend.

Developers spend 34% of their time building and maintaining internal apps (and at companies with over 1,000 employees, that number is 40%).

33% of developers currently opt for low and no-code platforms when building internal applications. That’s set to rise as 42% of developers state that they plan to build using low and no-code platforms in the future.

Here are some of the growing startups in this emerging space:

Obviously AI: No-code tool for building ML models. Users can connect database systems, pick the value they’re trying to predict, and the product helps automatically build the model. The company reached $726K ARR in 2021.

Signzy: Backend automation software for banks. The AI-powered no-code tool helps with customer onboarding and KYC compliance. The company reports having 140 banks and financial services companies among its customers. The startup has raised $12.6M in funding to date.

Levity: AI-powered tool for building workflow automations. Levity focuses on use cases for customer service, operations, and product teams. The company hit $1.2M in ARR in 2021 and raised $1.7M in a pre-seed funding round.

OTT Platform

Searches for “OTT Platform” are up 2400% in the last 24 months, so we decided to revisit this exploding topic.

“Over-the-top” means any streaming media that cuts out traditional TV and cable providers.

In the US, 82.4 million households stream an average of 100 hours of OTT content per month.

And the number of households plus the total hours spent watching OTT content have both increased by more than 20% since 2020.

What’s next

OTT Platforms are part of the Niche Netflixes meta trend.

Netflix, YouTube, Amazon Video, Hulu, and Disney+ account for 83% of total viewing time on streaming platforms.

But dozens of startups are now launching OTT streaming services to compete with the Netflixes of the world.

Which is the reason behind growing search interest in the term “OTT platform” specifically.

Upcoming players in this space include:

Shudder, the Netflix for horror movies (search interest is up 138% since 2017).

Britbox has thousands of episodes of popular and niche TV shows that premiered in the UK (searches are up 80x).

Crunchyroll is a video streaming service for anime (searches up 325%).

CuriosityStream is an on-demand streaming platform that focuses on documentaries and non-fiction shows (search interest is up 354%).


Supabase is an open-source alternative to Firebase.

In other words, it provides a full programming backend including Postgres database, authentication and data APIs.

During its Alpha program, Supabase hosted over 3000 databases and gained 5.46k Github stars. That number has since grown to 26.3k stars in the last 12 months.

The startup graduated from the Y Combinator incubator in August 2020 and has raised $36.1M in total.

What’s next

Supabase is part of the open-source DevOps meta trend.

The DevOps market is expected to reach $12.85M by 2025 – a CAGR of 18.6%.

By 2023, open-source DevOps platforms and software will represent 9% of the entire DevOps market.

LaunchDarkly, Redis Labs and Fossa are other trending startups that offer open-source DevOps tools.


Murumuru butter is a natural moisturizer and hair product that’s extracted from murumuru palm tree seeds.

It’s claimed to have anti-aging, anti-inflammatory properties, and may also help with skin issues like eczema. Which is why it’s an increasingly popular skincare product ingredient.

Similar to coconut oil, the butter is sold as refined or unrefined, and can also be used for cooking.

What’s next

Murumuru butter is part of the “natural beauty products” meta trend.

The global murumuru butter market is currently valued at $1B and is expected to reach $3B by 2030.

But this is just part of wider demand growth for natural beauty products.

Multinational giant Unilever launched the eco-friendly Love Beauty and Planet beauty brand, which includes products containing murumuru butter.

And natural vegan skincare products brand Three Ships Beauty has seen searches increase 99X in the last 12 months.

Other trending natural beauty products include green tea masks, honey serum, aloe vera calming gel and body butter.

Z League

Z League is a gaming platform that organizes Call-of-Duty Warzone tournaments.

The platform has been used by more than 1M players to date.

Recently, the platform started organizing Fortnite tournaments as well. Z League currently offers 62 Fortnite tournaments.

To date, the startup has raised $17.23M in funding over two rounds.

What’s next

Z League is part of the skill-based matchmaking meta trend.

According to Apex Legends’ chief developer, a skill-based matchmaking system increases player retention, competition and play hours.

Many major game titles have implemented skill-based matchmaking systems in their multiplayer mode.

And ​​evidence suggests that matchmaking more tightly on skill leads to greater gaming enjoyment and 4-6 times less quitting.

Which is why platforms that provide effective skill-based matchmaking services are gaining steam.

Other examples in this space include Toornament, Challengermode and CheckMateGaming.