This tutorial review could serve as an introduction of cardanol into the world of soft nanomaterials; it is a biobased lipid-mixture obtained from the plant Anacardium occidentale L. Cardanol is a renewable raw material derived from a byproduct of cashew nut processing industry: Cashew Nut Shell Liquid (CNSL). Cardanol is a rich mixture of non-isoprenoic phenolic compounds that is a valuable raw material for generating a variety of soft nanomaterials such as nanotubes, nanofibers, gels and surfactants. These nanostructures may then serve as templates for the synthesis of additional nanomaterials. The wealth and diversity of cardanol-derived functional nanomaterials has urged us to present an article that will give readers a taste of a new class of cardanol-derived functional amphiphiles, along with their ability to generate hierarchical functional nanomaterials through non-covalent soft-chemical routes. In this concise review, we discuss selected examples of novel biobased surfactants, glycolipids, and polymers derived from cardanol, and their subsequent self-assembly into functional soft materials.
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