In organic chemistry, phenols, sometimes called phenolics, are a class of chemical compounds consisting of a hydroxyl group (-O H) attached to an aromatic hydrocarbon group. The simplest of the class is phenol (C6H5OH).
Although similar to alcohols, phenols have unique properties and are not classified as alcohols (since the hydroxyl group is not bonded to a saturated carbon atom). They have relatively higher acidities due to the aromatic ring's tight coupling with the oxygen and a relatively loose bond between the oxygen and hydrogen. The acidity of the hydroxyl group in phenols is commonly intermediate between that of aliphatic alcohols and carboxylic acids (their pKa is usually comprised between 10 and 12). Loss of a positive hydrogen ion (H+) from the hydroxyl group of a phenol forms a negative phenolate ion.
Several laboratory methods for the synthesis of phenols:
by an ester rearrangement in the Fries rearrangement
by a rearrangement of N-phenylhydroxylamines in the Bamberger rearrangement
by hydrolysis of phenolic esters or ethers
by reduction of quinones
by replacement of an aromatic amine by an hydroxyl group with water and sodium bisulfide in the Bucherer reaction
by hydrolysis of diazonium salts
by oligomerisation with formaldehyde + base catalysed reaction with epichlorohydrine to epoxi resin components
by reaction with acetone/ketones to e.g. Bisphenol A, an important monomer for resins, e.g. polycarbonate(PC), epoxi resins
by a rearrangement reaction of dienones  in the dienone phenol rearrangement:
Reactions of phenols
Phenols react in a wide variety of ways.
Esterfication reactions and ether formation
Electrophilic aromatic substitutions as the hydroxyl group is activating, for example synthesis of calixarenes 
Reaction of naphtols and hydrazines and sodium bisulfite in the Bucherer carbazole synthesis
Oxidative cleavage, for instance cleavage of 1,2-dihydroxybenzene to the monomethylester of 2,4 hexadienedioic acid with oxygen, copper chloride in pyridine 
Oxidative de-aromatization to quinones also known as the Teuber reaction. Oxidizing reagents are Fremy's salt  and oxone . In reaction depicted below 3,4,5-trimethylphenol reacts with singlet oxygen generated from oxone/sodium carbonate in an acetonitrile/water mixture to a para-peroxyquinole. This hydroperoxide is oxidized to the quinole with sodium thiosulfate.
Phenols are oxidized to benzenediols in the Elbs persulfate oxidation
Phenolate anions (deriving from phenols by the loss of H+) can act as ligands towards metal cations
^Oxidative De-aromatization of para-Alkyl Phenols into para-Peroxyquinols and para-Quinols Mediated by Oxone as a Source of Singlet Oxygen M. Carmen Carreño, Marcos González-López, Antonio Urbano Angewandte Chemie International Edition Volume 45, Issue 17 , Pages 2737 - 2741 2006 Abstract