Obagi Reviews - The Dermatology Review

Obagi Reviews



If you’ve been to a medical spa or seen a dermatologist recently, you probably spotted Obagi products for sale there. Obagi is a line of professional, medical grade skincare products only available through its network of doctors. Here’s a look at Obagi skincare, what it offers and is it worth a try?

What are the Best Skin Care Products of 2021?

What Is Obagi?

The Obagi line dates back to 1988, when the board certified dermatologist Dr. Zein Obagi created a line of prescription-based skincare products. It was called WorldWide Products and after its sale in 1997, the new owners renamed it Obagi. Dr Obagi  left the company and created a new line, called ZO Skin Health in 2006.

Today Obagi is still known for its prescription strength skincare products which are administered by its network of doctors and aestheticians. The company launched the Obagi Clinical line at Sephora.com in late 2018, which marks the first time Obagi has entered the retail market.

What Is the Concept Behind Obagi?

A cornerstone of the Obagi philosophy is the belief thatskin care is more than ‘correcting’ or even ‘preventing,’ it’s about unleashing your skin’s full potential.” The company says its products are  scientifically backed, clinical-quality formulations that work on a diversity of skin types. The Obagi line is meant to address a multitude of skin issues, including hyperpigmentation, acne, dry skin and aging.

What Does Obagi Sell?

Obagi sells skincare products individually as well as in various systems. Here’s a breakdown

Obagi Systems

The Nu-Derm System- Nu-Derm is designed to tackle the signs of aging and includes seven products, including a cleanser, toner, Clear (a 4% hydroquinone solution), Exfoderm (an exfoliating lotion), and Blender, which also contains hydroquinone. Nu-Derm is available for normal to dry, as well as normal to oily skin.

Obagi 360– Designed to “preserve youthful looking skin,” the 360 System is aimed at a younger clientele and contains an Exfoliating Cleanser, Retinol 0.5% and HydraFactor Broad Spectrum SPF 30, a moisturizer with broad spectrum sunscreen.

ClenziDerm– This system is for acne prone skin and consists of Daily Care Foaming Cleanser with salicylic acid; Pore Therapy cream which also has salicylic acid and Therapeutic Lotion, a benzoyl peroxide based cream.

Obagi C RX– The C RX line is formulated to target the signs of aging. The kit includes C-Cleansing Gel with vitamin C and oat amino acids; C-Clarifying Serum which contains vitamin C and hydroquinone; C-Exfoliating Day Lotion, a lightweight moisturizer with glycolic acid, hyaluronic acid and vitamin E; Sun Shield Matte Broad Spectrum SPF 50, a zinc oxide based sunscreen and C-Therapy Night Cream which is meant to help fade dark spots with 4% hydroquinone, and Vitamins C and E. The kit comes in two versions, one for normal to dry skin and another for normal to oily skin.

Obagi Targeted Products

Obagi Hydrate Moisturizers These moisturizers are formulated to hydrate skin and keep it feeling smooth. The formulas are hypoallergenic and non-irritating

KèraPhine Body Smoothing Lotion – This exfoliating body lotion helps smooth our rough and bumpy skin. It is powered by 15% glycolic acid and 5% ammonium lactate, which has mild antibacterial properties. 

ELASTIderm Eye Products – The ELASTIDERM eye range is designed to help soften the look of fine lines and leave the eye area looking smoother and tighter.

Retinol – The Retinol range has a few products with a range of strengths, from 0.025% to 0.5%. Some products require a prescription.

Suzan Obagi Collection – This line is meant to cleanse the skin while protecting it from UV rays. The collection includes a cleanser, toner, acne wipes and Soothing Complex Broad Spectrum SPF 25

Obagi also offers two in-office procedures. The Blue Peel is a medium depth chemical peel, and the Obagi Facial is offered at select locations.

Obagi Clinical – This collection, which is available at Sephora.com, has seven products including a Vitamin C+ Arbutin Brightening Serum; Retinol 0.5 Retexturizing Cream; Kinetin+ Hydrating Eye Cream; Vitamin C Eye Brightener and Vitamin C Suncare Broad Spectrum SPF 30 Sunscreen.

How Much Do Obagi Products Cost?

The price of Obagi medical grade products is set by each reseller, but suggested prices by the company are $245 for the Nu-Derm trial kit; $374 for the Obagi –C RX system and the ClenziDerm system is $147. The suggested retail price for the Gentle Rejuvenation Soothing Cleanser is $40, $115.50 for the ELASTIderm Eye Cream and $102 for the Tretinoin 0.1% Cream.

The Clinical range at Sephora.com is lower priced, ranging from $55 (Retinol 0.5 Retexturizing Cream) to $95 for the Kinetin+ Rejuvenating Serum.

Is Obagi Cruelty Free?

Obagi states on its website,Unless mandated by the FDA for drug safety purposes, Obagi does not test its products on animals. Non-prescription Obagi products have not been tested on animals.”

What Ingredients Are in Obagi Products?

Both Obagi Medical and Obagi Clinical products contain commonly used skincare ingredients, such as acne fighters salicylic acid and benzoyl peroxide; the exfoliator glycolic acid; vitamin C, a skin brightener;  glycerin, a humectant, and retinol, a vitamin A derivative that is considered the gold standard when it comes to anti-aging. Obagi products also contain hydroquinone, which is effective at fading dark spots but controversial. Some countries have banned it because it may be a carcinogen, while some doctors feel that it is fine to use under supervision. But what makes Obagi products different is the high amount of certain ingredients, such as retinol and glycolic acid.

Where Can I Buy Obagi Products?

Obagi products are available through physicians and medical spas.

Do Obagi Products Work?

It’s important to remember that beauty and skincare does not have a one sized all approach. A little trial and error is always necessary, as one person’s hero product may do nothing for you. It’s always helpful to look at customer reviews and editorial write ups as a starting point.   

Obagi products have received their fair share of editorial coverage over the years, with write-ups in Women’s Health, New Beauty and New You magazine. The brand recently appointed the actress Priyanka Chopra as its first spokesperson. In a recent interview, she cited her favorite Obagi products as The Professional-C Serum 10%, Professional-C Suncare, and the Medical Hydrate Facial Moisturizer.

What do real customers think? There aren’t a huge number of Obagi professional reviews as the products are not available online but MakeupAlley.com has more than 200 reviews of the Obagi C-RX system. It gets a 4 out of 5 star rating, and 77% of users said they would purchase it again. Reviewer AllieC3 wrote, “Are you getting younger? That’s what my husband said last night at dinner. He’d been gone a week.” HibiscusAddict gave it 5 stars, writing, “This stuff works.” Reviewers did note the high prices, and most of the complaints had to do with the products being over-drying. Dollyrama noted, “It was expensive about $550 for the set so I was definitely expecting some kind of miracle. All I can say is that it is very irritating, basically it’s peeling and trying to bleach your skin pigments …”

Sitejabber.com has around 45 customer reviews of Obagi, where it gets a 3.9 out of 5 star rating. SelenaZ had praise for the acne fighting line, writing “Both of my teenagers have had acne issues and the Cleanziderm line working incredibly well.” Customers who gave Obagi low ratings wrote that it irritated their skin. AngelaD had a bad reaction– “ I used the complete Obagi Nu-Derm Rx only kit by the second day my face was full of little dots. My cheeks were extremely red and burning. My nose and cheeks were also swollen” while VickiD wrote that she saw no results.

A recent review  of the Nu-Derm system on the After 40 Mommy blog was largely positive. The author wrote, “Believe me, using Obagi skin care line changed my life and made me more confident with my skin.”

The new Obagi Clinical line does have some customer reviews on Sephora. One of the top rated products is the Vitamin C+ Arbutin Brightening Serum, which gets a 4.4 out of 5 star rating from more than 100 reviews. Yutyyama called it “BEST vitamin c serum out there” and Hollyhook24 found the “serum is a total game changer!!” Customers who gave it low ratings complained about the smell, or found that it did nothing for them- or made them break out. “I wanted to like this product but it made my face red and dried it out. After 3 days I had to stop as it made my face flaky,” wrote MelParis.

Another top rated Obagi product is the Kinetin+ Hydrating Eye Cream, which gets a 4.4 rating from 112 reviews; 88% of customers said they would purchase it again. Fans like Britnic23 called it “The perfect eye cream. The best part not only did it work but it also did better than any other eye creams I’ve tried in the past.”  Those that left negative feedback said the product did nothing for them. “Haven’t noticed a difference in fine lines and formula does not feel very moisturizing,” found Hildubs.

What Are Some Alternatives to Obagi?

Obagi may not be for everyone, due to the high price or perhaps you don’t want to (or cannot) see a dermatologist. There are other options.

Consider Formulyst. The brand’s philosophy is long-term and effective skincare, and the company wants to help its customers achieve their best looking skin.

Although hydroquinone is effective in lightening dark spots, it is not the only choice for fading dark spots. Formulyst’s Dark Spot Solutions is powered by HyWhite, which is derived from alpha linolenic acid, an omega-3 fatty acid found in plants. It works to minimize the appearance of dark spots while also hydrating the skin thanks to hyaluronic acid.

Some of the biggest causes of aging are environmental, such as the sun and pollution, so protecting skin from these aggressors is key to help it looking and feeling its best. Formulyst’s Active Serum – Vitamin B, C, E, Ferulic + Niacinamide is packed with a cocktail of antioxidants and vitamins to help protect skin and keep it looking bright and healthy. The potent blend leaves skin looking smooth and hydrated.

There’s no need to compromise when it comes to finding skincare that is effective and safe. Carrot & Stick takes a tough love approach to skincare, perfectly balancing the power of plants with cutting edge science. Not only is Carrot & Stick good for your skin, it is also good for the environment as the formulas skip harmful chemicals as well as the preservatives, emulsifiers and thickeners commonly found in skincare products.



Carrot & Stick

Carrot & Stick takes a tough love approach to skincare. What does this mean? It perfectly balances the power of plants with innovative science, offering the best of both worlds.Read More


The philosophy of Formulyst is long-term and effective skincare, rather than covering up any imperfections. The comprehensive line of products tackles everything from wrinkles to dark spots and dry skin. While some brands rely on unnecessary fillers and scents, Formulyst focuses on ingredients that help create results, such as vitamins, minerals and antioxidants.Read More

Advanced Dermatology

The Advanced Dermatology skin care regimen addresses the most pressing aging concerns.Read More

Obagi Elastiderm Eye Cream

What is Obagi Elastiderm Eye Cream? Obagi Elastiderm Eye Cream is a firming eye cream that is claimed to strengthen the skin by encouraging the production of collagen and elastin. It can be used by all skin types, and is ideal for mature or damaged skin. It is also said...

Obagi Clinical Vitamin C Eye Brightener Review

If you’re looking for an eye cream that offers something more than just hydration, you may want to check out the Obagi Clinical Vitamin C Eye Brightener. This product features the same Kinetin + Complex that is found is the Obagi Clinical Kinetin + Rejuvenating Serum. This complex has been clinically tested and has demonstrated the ability to minimize the major signs of skin aging in order to deliver a renewed, refreshed and youthful appearance. The Vitamin C Eye Brightener also features the vitamin C ester tetrahexyldecyl ascorbate, which is less well studied in comparison to pure vitamin C, but will stay fresh for much longer and is also better tolerated. Finally, this product also contains an adaptogen complex that includes yeast ferment and rhodiola rosea. These two ingredients help to hydrate and energize tired and dull looking skin to create a more youthful and radiance appearance. All together this formula is an excellent option for those whose primary concerns include skin aging, as well as dark circles or shadows under the eye.

Related: Best Vitamin C Serums


Obagi Clinical Vitamin C+ Arbutin Brightening Serum Review

For a brightening serum that’s packed with active ingredients, we recommend looking into the Obagi Clinical Vitamin C+ Arbutin Brightening Serum. This product was designed to target signs of dullness and discoloration as well as some of the major signs of aging including age spots and fine lines. As the name would suggest, this product contains vitamin C and alpha arbutin, both of which are powerful active ingredients that have been shown to help lighten hyperpigmentation and even out skin tone. This product contains 10% L-Ascorbic Acid, which is the pure form of vitamin C. Since vitamin C is at it’s most effective at around 20-25% in cosmetic formulations, this particular product would be an excellent option for those with more sensitive skin types or for those who have never used vitamin C before. With all this said, it’s worth noting that this product does contain denatured alcohol and sodium lauryl sulfate, both of which can be drying and potentially irritating, so we recommend performing a patch test before incorporating this product into your everyday skincare routine.

Related: Best Vitamin C Serums


Obagi Clinical Kinetin+ Rejuvenating Serum Review

While Obagi used to only be available through medical spas and esthetician’s offices their new Obagi Clinical line has been made available to everyone and can now be found in popular beauty retailers like sephora. This collection of products features active-ingredient rich formulations that focus mostly on treating some of the most common skincare concerns. For example, the Obagi Clinical Kinetin + Rejuvenating Serum is a rejuvenating product that was designed to specifically target the main skin concerns associated with aging. The two active ingredients in this formula include swiss apple stem cells and the Kinetin + Complex which is unique to Obagi products. These two ingredients work together to deliver a more radiant and youthful looking complexion, while simultaneously hydrating and plumping the skin.


Obagi Clinical Retinol 0.5 Retexturizing Cream Review

If you’re looking for a powerful over the counter retinol product, the Obagi Clinical Retinol 0.5 Retexturizing Cream may be the perfect product for you. This highly potent retinol cream is one of the most well known high-powered, over the counter retinol treatments on the market due to its concentration of active ingredients, as well as its nourishing formulation. Obagi is a dermatologist-based brand that specializes in creating very effective, active ingredient rich formulations. While 0.5% of a given active ingredient may not seem like very much, when it comes to retinol, a little goes a very long way. Since retinol can be quite irritating, especially during the first three months of use, sticking to a smaller percentage like 0.5% will allow you to reap all the same benefits that this active is known for, with less irritation, peeling or redness. Additionally, Obagi offers a range of retinol based products, including some that have a higher percentage of the active ingredient so you can feel free to up your daily dosage once your skin has had plenty of time to adjust and start reaping the benefits of this gold standard ingredient.

Further Reading: Best Retinol Creams


Obagi Hydrate Luxe Review

The Obagi Hydrate range was designed to provide the perfect level of hydration and moisture for all skin types. This is why they created two products, the Hydrate Facial Moisturizer and the Hydrate Luxe. The latter is a much richer product, which is more suitable for those with dry or mature skin types that are in need of a hefty dose of moisture. Because this product is considerably richer, it makes for an ideal evening moisturizer. The Obagi Hydrate Luxe was designed to work in tandem with your skin’s reparative processes that occur while your sleep to hydrate and replenish your complexion. The formula behind this product contains a number of beneficial actives and botanical ingredients including shea butter, biomimetic peptides and hydromanil. These ingredients help the skin retain moisture and maintain a healthy skin barrier.


Obagi Hydrate Review

Obagi Hydrate: Product Information and Overview Obagi Hydrate is an intensive and medicated moisturizer that is designed to be long-lasting and superior to over-the-counter moisturizers when it comes to how well they help the skin to retain moisture. The Obagi company, which was founded in the mid-1980s by a group of skin care professionals, creates and markets skin care products that are available only through dermatologists’ offices. Obagi is currently owned by Valeant Pharmaceuticals International, Inc., but the products, including Obagi Hydrate, still carry the original company name. Those who want to try this moisturizer can find a distributor via the company website’s product finder. If you’re interested in purchasing Obagi Hydrate, it may be a good idea to read reviews about the cream online, especially since the product is priced in the $60 range for less than two ounces.

Obagi Retinol 1.0 Review

The Obagi Retinol 1.0 treatment was designed to fight the major signs of premature aging that can be exacerbated by environmental stressors such as free radicals, UVA and UVB rays as well as pollution. this formula features 1% retinol, which helps to boost cell turnover, revealing clearer, brighter and more even skin tone. This percentage of retinol is an excellent option for all skin types, especially for those who aren’t extremely experienced with retinoids. Retinol is a less potent form of retinoic acid that requires conversion in order to be usable on the skin, making it an excellent option for those who are new to retinoids and aren’t ready to start using a prescription strength retinoid. In addition to this active, the Obagi Retinol 1.0 also contains hyaluronic acid, vitamin C and jojoba oil to brighten, moisturize and hydrate the skin. This is one of the few products on the market that offers vitamin C and retinol in one product, so if you’re looking for an all-in-one active serum, this is definitely worth checking out.


Obagi C Serum

Obagi C Serum is a high strength vitamin C serum that is designed to penetrate deep into skin to provide effective antioxidant protection from UV damage. This serum is also said to brighten hyperpigmentation while encouraging the growth of collagen and elastin fibers.Obagi C Serum is available in three different strengths of L-ascorbic acid: 10%, 15%, and 20%.In this review, we’ll discuss the key ingredients in this serum, how to use it, Obagi C Serum reviews from real customers, and more.

What Are The Key Obagi C Serum Ingredients?

If you look on the back of nearly any skin care product, you’ll see that the first ingredient on the label is typically water. That’s because most brands use water as the base of their formulations. What’s interesting about Obagi C Serum is that propylene glycol is the first ingredient and, therefore, is the highest concentration ingredient in this serum. Propylene glycol functions as a humectant, solvent, and delivery agent. Thus, using a high concentration of propylene glycol in the Obagi C Serum accomplishes two things: it attracts water to the skin to improve hydration and also helps to improve penetration of the key ingredients.

There are two forms of vitamin C in the Obagi C Serum: L-ascorbic acid and ascorbyl glucoside. L-ascorbic acid is the chemically active form of vitamin C. The problem with L-ascorbic acid is that it oxidizes easily when exposed to oxygen and/or light. Once L-ascorbic acid oxidizes, the product is essentially useless, which can unfortunately mean that quite a bit of product is wasted. This is why you’ll see vitamin C derivatives in skin care products, such as ascorbyl glucoside in the Obagi C Serum.

  • Malela Original review: Apr 13, 2021. Reply

    I wish I would have seen this page before I bought Blue Brilliance Triple Acid peel since It is not cheap!
    No, it doesn’t work. Do not waste your money. I am very disappointed because I went to the main website to get this product and I noticed they do not have a 1 star reviews. All 5 stars but how can a consumer go based on controlled data. The whole point of reviews is to help customer guide them on how valid and good the product is. I contacted them and they told me they are not responsible for open product. Then allow people to post their experiences. I will say, Obagi works! But not the Home treatment peel. Pay the treatment from a spa or a dermatologist.

  • Krisie Original review: Apr 05, 2020. Reply

    I tried it for 8 weeks exactly how the wellness center said and it made my skin worse. For 8 weeks my skin did nothing but peel and burn. I kept up with my two week check ups and they just kept saying don’t give up, you will see a big difference in 6 weeks. 8 weeks later, my skin still burned and peeled so much. Then the acne started. The breakout of acne was the worse it’s ever been. I finally stopped using it and went back to my old dermatologist to help get my skin back on track. The acne is gone after quitting the product but I still am still suffering from dry spots which I never had before. Terrible product I would never use again.

  • Amy Original review: May 30, 2019. Reply

    ZoSkin , Obagi is the Best skincare line ..IF recommended by a Dr or Nurse Practitioner or Esthetician ONLY!! You cannot fix it on the text side read the ingredients and decide to make your own “ GSR” getting skin ready.. per Golden rule of Dr. Obagi. You must know the chemicals and science behind the products for them to work. The length of time and when to mix or use singular or not at all.
    I have been using GSR w ZoSkin and then my other 4 steps am. Pm. For 3 years now. It’s amazing. Today I left my MedSpa – saw my Esthetician , she did a ZoSkin peel w a calming mask it was tingling then heaven. And here I am doing my GSR , then correct a. m ( is Melamin C ..a 20% vitamin c) p m stimulate ( is RetinA / Tretioinn mixed with Melamix / they show you how much on your finger) then serum hydrate eye lip and PROTECT!!! Spf!! Am. Obviously not pm. It’s a 7 step program. And if you find the right group. NO PRESSURE!! You will get your moneys worth. Use every product you buy like a rx!! No need to slather on moisturizer 4Xs bc it feels good. Horrible for the skin!! It must product oil glands!!
    I promise if your skin can handle it. I have eczema- ultra sensitive skin. We started out teeeeeeny steps. Now 3 years later I work / hired in 5!! Days at 45 w the Biggest BCosmetic Corp in the Work as a Makeup Artist and skin care specialist. He does have TONS w/o hydroquinone!!! It’s a miracle. But it takes time. Xo

  • Andree Original review: Jul 24, 2018. Reply

    Just change your diet. Also probiotic tablets are excellent for acne. No sugars . Drink plenty of water every day. Lots of salads ,fresh fruit and avocados are great i eat loads of avacados and tomatoes. I eat tomatoes like i eat apples. Toothpaste and vaseline mixed together works really well on acne ,pimples etc. I use every night on my face. Works excellent for me.

  • Andree Original review: Jul 24, 2018. Reply

    My sister uses this product and while her skin looks good I don’t like the fact they have hydroquinone in their products. I am 49 and people are shocked when they find out my age as they think I look really young even my sister comments. I used to suffer with acne. I drink loads of water eat lots of fresh fruit and vegetables especially avocados I’ve cut out sugar and white bread. I take vitamin E capsules and my nightime beauty treatment is a little bit of whitening toothpaste mixed with Vaseline. I cover my face in it put it on my dark circles under my eyes. My skin is great. During the day I wear sun cream factor 50 on my face no matter what the weather is like. My face is wonderful.

  • userjw Original review: Apr 27, 2018. Reply

    I’ve been using the product for about 4 months and while it did improve my skin tone and dark spots, it left dark yellow marks on my white wash cloths that will not come out, even with bleach! It ruined 5 of my washcloths and when I wrote to Obagi about it, they just said, “thanks” we’ll pass the info along! WOW! talk about great customer service ( insert sarcasm )
    All in all, I paid 400.00 for the entire kit and would not pay that kind of $$ again, especially since some of the products are just “fluff” and not needed ( toner, exfoderm, face wash ) as the only active bleaching ingredients lie in the Hydroquinonine and combo used with Retin A.

  • LIssette Original review: Jan 04, 2018. Reply

    I’m very disappointed in the customer service and product from Obagii. After spending about $400 on the product in the dermatologist office and the expedition date of 6 months only and not even working on my skin it’s really not a good way to handle customers. It didn’t improve my skin at all with for the discoloration. So I don’t recommend anyone to buy this product I’m sure there is better products out there for that amount of money. I’m on the search.

  • Kom Original review: Jul 03, 2017. Reply

    I know exactly what you mean. I have been using it since 2012 and I have never had any issues with it at all. I started when I realised that the discoid lupus condition I had gave me terrible pigmentation of varying shades and these were very unsightly. My dermatologist recommended Obagi Nu Derm and I have been faithful since my skin go so clear and smooth that no one believes that I am a 40 year old. 😀

  • Irene Original review: Mar 01, 2017. Reply

    I’ve been using Obagi for over 3 years now and I absolutely love it. I used to have sun spots and freckles all over my face and after only about 2 months into using it, my skin became clearer. After about 6 months, most of the sun spots and freckles disappeared. My skin is tight and I don’t even have any wrinkles on my face. People always tell me that I have flawless skin and that I look like I’m in my early 30’s when I’m actually 46 years old. I love this product and will continue to use it.

  • shan Original review: Dec 31, 2016. Reply

    I used obagi nu derm years ago and I did clear my complexion for the short term but little did I know it will remove my natural colour – they dont tell you that! Since then my face has always been pale and does not tan anymore- even if it does tan it will take a very long time in the sun. I would caution use because it is actually bleaching the skin and you do go pale which is long term basically forever!

  • K Original review: Sep 30, 2016. Reply

    I used Obaji almost 5 years ago and have noticed now that it caused my skin to be two toned! It was supposed to fix my under eye bags but instead made them worse. I feel awful about the way my face looks now, I wouldn’t recommend this product to anyone!!!!

  • Tanya Original review: Sep 19, 2016. Reply

    I started using the obagi system about a week and a half ago i am prepping my skin for a treatment of peels starting in the next week or so. I have found my skin is breaking out quite a bit but have noticed some improvements especially in my forehead acne but im still getting quite a number of blemishes else where. im just wondering how long does it take for treatment to take full effect? i just really hope it works cause its really my last hope. Decided to completely take myself of all antibiotics and try clear my skin from the outside in.

  • Ana67 Original review: Sep 03, 2016. Reply

    I have been using Obagi for 5 years and would never use anything else! I am nearly 50 and am constantly mistaken for someone in their late 30’s. Go slow on the products if you have a peeling (expected!) reaction in the first few weeks/months, use mineral makeup to cover. From freckles and sun damage and acne 5 years ago, I can now feel great with no makeup. it is truly amazing but requires PATIENCE and COMMITMENT!

  • PATRICIA PICKRON Original review: Jun 24, 2016. Reply


  • Molly Original review: Apr 12, 2016. Reply

    I am 26 years old and went to my esthetician 6 months ago to improve upon my mild acne along with sun damage (following years of tanning without protection). She put me on Obagi Nu-Derm with Renova .02.

    During the first 6 weeks, my skin became extremely red and dry. Although the look wasn’t ideal, I read this was normal and to be expected. In addition to the dryness, I also noticed~100 tiny bumps appear along my chin and cheeks that had not been there before. Similar to pimples, these bumps could be popped and white gunk would come out. But unlike pimples, the bumps never came to a head on their own. Mt esthetician insisted the bumps were a result of my skin purging and recommended that I stick with the line.

    4 months in, the redness and dryness had subsided substantially. Much of the sun damage had faded or disappeared, leaving me with a more even coloration. Unfortunately, the bumps remained. It seemed that even if I popped them, they would return within a few weeks.

    My esthetician recommended a micro-laser peel and mini profractional to remove the top layers of skin, bring the clogged pores to the surface and promote healing. In the weeks following the laser treatment, she recommended that I not use Obagi because my skin would be so sensitive. As expected, my skin broke out as the clogged pores were able to come to the surface. The bumps along my cheeks almost completely diminished and the bumps on my chin decreased dramatically.

    I began using Obagi ~3 weeks after my treatment. Unfortunately, once I started using it the bumps began to return again. It’s been about a month since I returned to Obagi and I feel as though I am back tracking. The bumps cover my chin and are beginning to return to my cheeks. So today, I have chosen to end my Obagi use and move on to a more appropriate line for my skin.

    Overall did as it said by reducing my age spots/sun damage and providing me with a more even complexion. It is only because of my acne that this line is not appropriate for me. I blame my esthetician for insisting upon the continued use of a product that addressed only one aspect of my skin care needs while ignoring/worsening the other. To others suffering from acne, I would suggest looking elsewhere if you do not see improvement in the clarity of your skin within the first couple months.

  • M Peters Original review: Dec 12, 2015. Reply

    Reading responses about Obagi, I feel I need to voice an opinion and thoughts. First of all purchasing this product through a salon? I would not recommend. It needs to be used under a good doctor’s supervision. This line has been prescribed to me by two leading plastic surgeons in conjunction with Retin-A. The first surgeon located in Manhattan back in 1999, the second in Hackensack, NJ in 2015. Nothing has changed! But my new doctor cautioned about not using the bleaching agents for more than 4 continuous months due to their tendency to thin the skin. Yes it is true that there will be redness, peeling. Use some sense. Stop using the product for a day or two and then continue. It is an expected result of the skin renewal. But I will tell you that the serious age spots that had developed (because I had stopped using the skin care) are dissappearing and people are constantly complementing me on my beautiful skin. I have a tendency to break out even here in my 60’s, so I sometimes dab on a bit of Neutragena acne med on a blemish durectly to take care of it. The secret to the line as you use it is HYDRATION. Getting though the initial 6 week period is worth every day of looking a bit irritated.

  • Ashley Original review: Sep 17, 2015. Reply

    Here’s my 2 cents about what I’ve learned with these products. They are full of parabens, they have fragrance, dyes, ethanols, sulfates, glycerins, and the sunscreen has octinoxate and alcohol in it. Parabens have been linked to breast cancer, endocrine disruption and reproductive toxicity as well as developmental defects. 9 times out of 10, fragrances are in products to mask the legally hidden phthalates (endocrine disruptors, linked to birth defects, breast cancer, infertility, liver cancer etc). Dyes are made from coal tar which is derived from petroleum. Sulfates are carcinogens. Octinoxate is also an endocrine disruptor.

    So in short, you couldn’t pay me to use any of these products. Anything you put on your skin is absorbed into your blood stream within 26 seconds. Recent research also tested cord blood from newborns. A staggering number revealed some very scary toxins within the cord blood.

  • Sally Original review: Sep 05, 2015. Reply

    When you say you stopped for short periods then sun spots came back, do you mean you stopped using all the products and started using other brands, or do you mean you just stopped the active ingredients products? I order to maintain what products must you continuously use? Thank you.

  • Crystal Original review: Aug 28, 2015. Reply

    when i first started, my skin was itchy, dry, peeling & looked like my fine lines were getting worse. When i went back in for my follow up appointment with my dermatologist, I learned these symptoms are supposed to happen! The receptionist had me sign up for a program on Obagi NuDerm and sure enough, I received the email that said all these symptoms are expected. I looked at the brochure that came with the system (it was hiding under the plastic) and lo and behold the entire description of the “program” is listed in there!

    I’ve been using Obagi now for 4 months and I love how much my freckles have faded. My skin is brighter overall too. My derm has something called a reveal camera and she took a picture before i started. I have lots of sun damage from all the years of not using any sunscreen. I highly recommend this system for anyone seriously commited to removing the sun damage. I don’t know if I would risk not buying it from a dr. as this system is really expensive and since I only have one face, the $ savings buying it online (expired/ fake?) isn’t worth it to me.

  • Palma Original review: Apr 21, 2015. Reply

    Did you up load your youtube to show your skin after using the products?

  • pakeeza Original review: Mar 17, 2015. Reply

    I used to suffer from occasional acne(one or two acne at a time). I wanted a complete cure so Obaji clenziderm was suggested by a salon I visited. I have to say I had the most horrible experience not only with the product but with Obajis customer service as well. within using the skin care system for 2 weeks i felt my skin was getting itchy and tight all over. i complained to the salon and they said thats normal and i must continue using it for atleast 3 months. 3rd week i couldnt tolerate the pain on my face so i stopped. I had acne all over my face now. and now it wasnt just acne … it was much deeper. I emailed obagi for a refund or an exchange but no consideration. salon owner refused to give me any exchange as the products were used . i suffered with cystic acne for the whole year. i used alot of plant based products. took antibiotics. my cystic acne stopped but my marks got deeper with time. this was back in 2009. I have been getting so many treatments on my face including chemical peels, hydroquinone creams, dermabrasion, fraxel… so much money spent only to get rid of my marks and they are still there as melasma now. I will be uploading my before and after pics on youtube and all the details of what i went through over the years. I would never suggest this product to anyone. it will tighten your pores and cause more acne & damage to the skin. worst experience with their customer service. I wish i didnt have to deal with so much trauma to my skin only because of obaji.

  • Amy Original review: Mar 04, 2015. Reply

    I used Obagi before I got pregnant and was told I shouldn’t use it during pregnancy or nursing. Recently I stop nursing and decide to use Obagi again. It has been a while since I use them and I really love the new moisturizer, Hydrate Luxe. My skin used to get red and peeled for weeks before it builds resistant to it. And with the new moisturizer, my skin doesn’t get red and does not peel at all! I apply Hydrate Luxe in the morning after #4 and before sunscreen and at night after #5. On the days I forgot to use Hydrate Luxe, my skin peels again. But as long as I use them every day, I don’t peel and I don’t get red. I don’t know why it took them so many years to come up with a moisturizer that works with Obagi Nu-Derm. But I am glad they did. And my friend introduce me to this website TrueBeauty.com where you can always get 10% off by entering discount code member10. I ordered couple times from them, so far I am pleased with their products and service.

  • Marissa Miller Original review: Feb 21, 2015. Reply

    I started using Obagi a month ago. It was recommended for my pigmentation or sun damage. My skin has become extremely dry and seems the fine lines are worse. I stopped using it.

  • brooke Original review: Jan 01, 2015. Reply

    I have used Obagi Nu Derm for over 10 years, If you are starting out for the very first time, just start slowly. You don’t have to use the Retin A /blender every night when you first start. Give your skin a chance to get used to it. Also, use less Retin A in your blender mix at first. I know people that jumped right in and eventually quit because their face was so raw. If your face starts getting irritated back off a little on the exfoderm and retin A and then increase them slowly. I would never be without Obagi in my life!

  • Lee-Ann Original review: Nov 18, 2014. Reply

    I’m having the same problem Julie as well skin breakouts whenever I use the product. It was horrible and I also have only used natural products in the past. When I did the 2 week consult at the clinic they seemed to think everything was ok and then the next week it got worse even with less use of the product in only a small area of my forehead where my melasma was. When I talked to the clinic about the reaction I was having all over my face and especially along my cheeks under my eyes and that I was very concerned and wanted to return the products they told me I had to come into see them and would not comment on return. The soonest I was able to get in was a few weeks from then so as per the product instructions I stopped using them. Once my skin was healed I tried one application to see how my skin reacted as they told me it never happens and it doesn’t cause breakouts and sure enough my skin flared up again. Today I went in for my consult and they told me it never happens and that I should have taken pictures because they needed them for OZ and they weren’t sure what to do without them. Yet no one asked me to do that. They are apparently calling OZ today to see if they can do a return but are unsure. $600 – $800 worth of product that made skin horrific and “might” be able to return the product!!! If anyone reads this – please send me positive energy for a return on these products. I hope OZ is a compassionate company that stands by their clients enough to provide a return when there is a major reaction.

  • Sandy Original review: Nov 03, 2014. Reply

    I have been using Obagi for about three years. At first, my skin peeled and was very red and painful. And my wrinkles looked worse! but you have to continue. I promise you it is worth it in the end. Now my skin is clearer, no age spots and my wrinkles are better. People comment all of the time on how great my skin looks. I have stopped for short periods of time and the age spots come back but that is all. It is the best thing I have ever used on my skin. You have to be willing to get through the horrible first 6 weeks though. It is worth it!

  • Rania Original review: Sep 14, 2014. Reply

    Hi Nadia, what exactly did you use for your pigmentation and how. I have too much pigmentation and need your advise. thanks

  • Hend Original review: Sep 04, 2014. Reply

    Hi all, ive been using the clear and complex a for a 3 months aprix. The results are amazing , so i decided to google what should i do then ? I was shocked that people after stopping using obagy products things the skin gets worse am really depressed i cant even enjoy the improvement that happened to my skin now , please of someone used obagi and stopped it for a time tell me what happens

  • gablesgirl Original review: Jun 16, 2014. Reply

    I have tried everything for melasma. I live in Florida and despite very aggressive treatments and lasers I had no results. Obagi has reduced my melasma in two months. It is very harsh at first but keep it up. I have people stopping me and asking about my skin and now look considerably younger than friends my age. It is a miracle product.

  • Janice Original review: Jun 05, 2014. Reply

    I’ve looked at several reviews and although I’m not using the product yet I wanted to share regarding my sister who has used it for a few years now. She recently turned 60 yrs old and I currently in the hospital. She’s the talk among all staff because of how beautiful her skin looks. Many have asked what she’s using. Her face has a beautiful glow, wrinkles softened and her pores which used to be very large are not visible anymore unless you get really close to examine her skin and even then they are now very small. She swears by this product and I have to say I agree from seeing the results. She has told me at the start you will break out as your skin is being purified but encouraged me when I start to be patient and stick with it.

  • Nicole Original review: May 05, 2014. Reply

    Hi. When I started obagi un derm 8 weeks ago, my skin was so red and peeling and felt quite sore, I also thought about discontinuing. I stuck with it and after about two weeks the redness and peeling started to decrease. I used no. 4. Every other day for first two weeks. I did not like to use too much make up at that point as my skin was too flakey. I just kept moisturising with no. 6 throughout the day. Although now at 8 weeks my skin has adjusted to the product I can only notice a vague improvement with some wrinkles looking slightly better. I will stick with the 18 week course and see the overall results. I must say though that my old regime of Simple vitamin face wash, followed by apricot kernel oil into damp skin, pat dry and a good moisturiser like Nivea were so far just as good.

  • julie Original review: Apr 02, 2014. Reply

    I’m wondering how you are doing? I used the product for the first time 2 weeks ago and had a horrible reaction… Red, raw, oozing swollen skin from my nose down. Happened on the third day… Stopped using product so skin could heal. Re-started minus the retin A on previously damaged area once it was healed…. Same thing happened again. The med spa said no patient in their office has ever had this reaction. I don’t see how I can continue use… I am so bummed- turning 50 in June and wanted to step up the quality of my skin….. In the past I have always used natural products- I think this was just too aggressive for me… Thinking about other options that will get me great results without this horrible reaction…

  • Cathy Original review: Feb 04, 2014. Reply

    I buy all my Obagi products from a plastic surgeon’s office. I used the C for 5 weeks with wonderful tone smoothing results. Then I added Trenitoin .1% and used it sparingly for 4 weeks. My lips became so dry and tight that I couldn’t stand it. I exfoliated the dry skin off my lips and the next day I had a tremendous allergic reaction with swollen, red, peeling, painful lips for a full week. My skin looks great but it’s not worth the lip pain. I still use the gentle cleanser, the C and the hydrate. My skin care consultant says allergic reactions are every rare but 6 weeks later my lips still haven’t healed.

  • sharron Original review: Jan 28, 2014. Reply

    Is this product good for someone who had eczema?

  • Yvonne Original review: Jan 12, 2014. Reply

    I have been using Obagi Nu Derm with tretinion for 8 weeks now, my skin is still very red and its peeling like a snake. I teach group fitness and at the end of every class my face is even redder and stings due to the sweat and heat(nasty). I have been assured by my physician that this reaction is normal but i look and feel very unattractive. I recently turn 50 so i decided to change my skincare as the wrinkles and age spots were unaffected by over the counter (expensive) products. i am still hopeful that at the end of the15 week program i will have fresher brighter looking skin so i’m hanging in there as the bits of my face that aren’t red or flaking do so signs of improvement.

  • Vick Original review: Jan 08, 2014. Reply

    Obagi Skin Care scheme works very well. It is very productive in correcting pigment issues, laxity of the skin, lines, wrinkles, pore dimensions as well as over all quality of the skin. Excellent to precondition the skin former to surgical and nonsurgical methods and enhance the results of Botox or fillers.

  • Sherry Original review: Jan 06, 2014. Reply

    I am 63 and have lived in Florida for most of my life and yes I have skin damage! I started using Obagi about 9 years ago and like many others who have commented it started out ruff. My face got red, peeled and had blemishes but after 6 weeks my skin settled down and my skin started looking great. Over time my color all blended and my brown spots faded. I get compliments all the time on my complexion and do look 10 years younger than I really am and that is good because my husband is 11 years younger:) I give myself regular facials, about every three months a citrus peel and stay out of the full sun as much as possible. You have to give the product time to work and if you do you will not be disappointed.

  • Omayra Original review: Jan 01, 2014. Reply

    I have been using Obagi Nuderm since 2006 the first few days of used I was very sensitive to the tretinoin cream which is like Retin A but my physician told me to use it every other day till my skin gets used to it and it did. You have to give your face time to get used to the products as they are very potent, believe me I was very hesitant at first to continue use cause I also started to breakout but I stuck with it and afterwards the sun damage I had was gone, my pores were very small and my skin is extremely smooth. I love Obagi and I don’t care what anybody says I stand by it. For those of you that had problems maybe you just didn’t give it enough time to work plus you must work with your physician to make sure everything is going the way it should.

  • Lory Original review: Nov 16, 2013. Reply

    I was first skeptical when I bought The Nu Derm system by Obagi but after a few months I noticed that my skin was clearer and my pore size was smaller. I still have blackheads and whiteheads but I can definitely see a big difference in my skin when I look in the mirror. My husband is also using it and his skin is looking great. He says he cant tell but I can tell.

  • KEVINA Original review: Nov 13, 2013. Reply

    I started using Obagi Nu-DERM Line 2 months ago but i am not seeing any improvement. Instead my face is breaking out so much. I don’t know weather i should stop or give it a couple months.

  • Sandra Original review: Oct 02, 2013. Reply

    I have been using Obagi skin care products for several months now but have seen no visible improvement in my skin. I find them to be a little irritating and I need a stronger moisturizer. My Obagi experience has not been great and I will be trying something now instead.

  • Natalie Original review: Sep 11, 2013. Reply

    I used Obagi Nu Derm for the first time last night and I woke up with a rash this morning. I will avoid this product and try to return it in the morning. I was recommended this by my physician who was fully aware that I had sensitive skin so I will be looking for somewhere else to go now.

  • Leanne Original review: Aug 28, 2013. Reply

    I know you are wondering if spending a few hundred dollars on a face wash, cream and peel is worth it but I have been using Obagi for years and it has really worked well for my skin. I love the Obagi range and it isnt great for sensitive skin because I know a friend who cant tolerate their products but they are potent but I prefer to use something that works rather than just a moisturizer you can buy from the local store.

  • Hilda Original review: Aug 14, 2013. Reply

    I received so many compliments on my face since I started using Obagi Nu Derm last month. This is the best skin care range I have come across and I will recommend Obagi to my friends. The product isnt as expensive as creams in department stores and many dermatologists use Obagi.

  • Hannah Original review: Aug 09, 2013. Reply

    I found Obagi skin care to be quite irritating for the first two days but you just need to keep using it and let your skin warm up and eventually that irritation will disappear and your skin will be just fine. I use a few products but I found their sunblock to cause my breakouts so I stop using it. Nu Derm Is definitely the best cleanser and cream I have bought.

  • Martina Original review: Aug 08, 2013. Reply

    I love Obagibagi Nu-Derm Foaming Gel, Obagi Nu-Derm Toner, Obagi Professional-C Serum 15% Strength, Obagi ELASTIderm Eye Treatment Cream and Obagi Hydrate Facial Moisturizer. I have very dry skin so I need an intensive cream and strict skin care routine or my skin gets flakey. I started to use Obagi one year ago and my skin feels much better.

  • Renata Original review: Aug 07, 2013. Reply

    Ive been using obagi for 5 years and absolutely love them, ive tried other products just for the sake of it and to make it easier to buy them and I always end up going back to them ,although I don’t have a problem with sun damage or deep wrinkles ,they make my skin look fresh, even and takes the red off.

  • Erin Original review: Aug 02, 2013. Reply

    I was wondering if you know where you can buy genuine Obagi products from the internet. There are quite a few products in the Obagi range that I would like to buy, including the i Nu Derm System and their vitamin c serum.

  • Pink Original review: Jul 21, 2013. Reply

    obagi tretinoin cream works better then most retinol creams but it is quite powerful that you want to avoid using it everyday. Make sure you are using it in combination with obagi nuderm and other skin care products recommended by your physician. I bought a starter kit before and the only product I didn’t like is the obagi clenziderm. Hope this helps.

  • Your Review
    User Rating: 3.0 (10 votes)

    Recommended Articles

    The Best Skincare Products of 2021

    Uncategorized read more

    Best Skin Care Routine

    Uncategorized read more