Skin Care Product Reviews

Proactiv Review – Is Proactiv Acne Treatment Safe To Use and Work To Clear Acne

Proactiv is a popular over-the-counter acne treatment. Does Proactiv really work? Is it worth a try? Read real Proactiv user reviews & see for yourself.
By Dermspotlight Staff,
Updated June 15, 2021
Advertising Disclosure: Our editors independently research, test, and recommend the best products; we may receive commissions on purchases made from our chosen links. You can learn more about our review process here.

What Is Proactiv?

Proactiv is a skincare brand that offers products designed to help tackle acne for both teens and adults. This product line came to the scene in 1995 and is purportedly one of the best in its category, and that the brains behind this brand are dermatologists who have worked in the field for decades.

Several celebrities openly endorse Proactiv products, the likes of Judith Light (the first endorser), and Kendall Jenner, which is a positive indication that the brand offers reliable products. These celebrities claim that Proactiv worked wonders for their acne issues.

Who Owns Proactiv?

Proactiv is owned by Dr. Katie Rodan and Dr. Kathy Fields. The two are Stanford-trained dermatologists. Besides this brand, they also own another popular beauty company – the Rodan + Fields.

The idea to create Proactiv skin care came from a desire to search for an ideal acne solution. The result was a product line that was then pitched to Neutrogena, which decided to sell the first product through infomercials. This helped the brand take off and is now considered one of the best acne solutions in the market.

What Does Proactiv Sell?

The products under this brand have different subscription skincare categories which are;

  • ProactivMD 3-Piece System – This kit package features a face wash, retinoid rich adapalene gel, and the daily oil control moisturizer (with SPF 30).
  • Proactiv Solution Acne Treatment System – contains a Renewing Cleanser, Revitalizing Toner, and a Repairing Treatment.
  • Proactiv + Acne Treatment System – this product entails a combination therapy (treats and prevents acne) which is combined with a Smart Target Technology to provide acne-fighting medicine. Contains a Skin Smoothing Exfoliator, Pore Targeting Treatment, and Complexion Perfecting Hydrator.

The teen kits contain extra products such as Blackhead Dissolving and an Emergency Blemish Relief.

Does Proactiv Really Work?

Having been in the market for more than two decades, the Proactiv acne solution has been reviewed by many sources. It is also claimed to have received more than forty awards from both the health and beauty industries.

Although the product’s 3-step system is considered tedious by users, most of them agree that it is worth the trouble. With a single-use, consumers claim that the skin feels softer and the pimples are reduced considerably. Users, however, claim that one should not expect an instant result because healing is a gradual process.

What are Proactiv Ingredients?

The main Proactiv ingredients used include;

  • Benzoyl Peroxide – This is a known medication for acne vulgaris. According to the Journal of Clinical and Aesthetic Dermatology, benzoyl peroxide is an emollient which is effective in skin moisturizing and follicular penetration. This ingredient is also effective in the treatment of truncal acne vulgaris which occurs on the back and chest.
  • Retinoids – According to the journal Dermatology and Therapy, retinoids play an essential role in the treatment of acne. This is basically because they are comedolytic which simply means they inhibit the formation of blemishes which occur as a result of trapped oil and skin cells in the pores (comedones).
  • Jojoba – Jojoba plant produces long-chain alcohol and fatty acid esters. According to the National Center for Biotechnology Information, jojoba has anti-inflammatory effects and can be used on a variety of skin conditions such as infections, aging, and healing. It also has sun screening and moisturizing effects.
  • Aloe Barbadensis – Aloe vera is an important skincare ingredient that has multiple active components including vitamin E, enzymes, sugars, lignins, amino acids, and salicylic acids. According to the Indian Journal of Dermatology, aloe vera has anti-inflammatory, moisturizing, anti-photodamaging, and healing properties.
  • Salicylic Acid – In low concentrations, salicylic acid is known to have clinical benefits addressing photodamaged skin, acne, facial redness, and pore size. The Journal of Clinical and Aesthetic Dermatology claims that salicylic is an effective acne treatment and is effective for skin dryness and irritation.

ALSO READMario Badescu Skin Care and doTERRA

Is Proactiv Skin Care Good?

Going by the ingredients present in the Proactiv face wash and Proactiv cleanser products, it may be a good product for acne control.

Why Proactiv is Bad for your Skin?

Depending on your skin type, this product may be bad for your skin. Ingredients such as retinoids and aloe vera can flare up breakouts making the condition worse for you.

Does Proactiv Have Any Side Effects?

Although the Proactiv products have not outlined side effects, there is a possibility of getting irritation, breakouts, and skin sensitivity as claimed by some users.

What Is Proactiv’s Refund Policy?

This brand offers a 60-day money-back guarantee to its users. Users can also cancel the monthly subscriptions over the phone.

How Much Do Proactiv Products Cost?

Both the ProactivMD 3-Piece System costs and the Proactiv Solution Acne Treatment System cost $19.95 while the Proactiv + Acne Treatment System costs $29.99.

SEE ALSOObagi Skin Care and Perricone MD

People Also Ask

Q: Where is Proactiv Sold?

A: Proactiv is sold directly from the official website as well as from other authorized retailers.

Q: Is Proactiv Cruelty-Free?

A: The brand is not clear about this information thus is not easy to term it as cruelty-free.

Q: What are the Customers Reviews on Proactiv?

A: There are both positive and negative Proactiv reviews from users. Positive reviewers claim that their skin healed from acne with consistent use of the product. Negative reviewers, on the other hand, claimed that Proactiv products caused breakouts, skin irritation as well as burning sensations. And apart from side effects, critics mentioned that canceling the subscription was a nightmare.

Q: Is Proactiv good for teenage acne?

A: Yes, this product accommodates teens as there is a teen kit that has awesome products. Users also agree that it works for teens.

Q: Is Proactiv really effective?

A: According to the manufacturer claims, Proactiv may be an effective treatment option for mild to moderate acne outbreaks and scarring. But it’s not a miracle cure, and it won’t work for everyone. Also, Proactiv doesn’t work on cystic or nodular acne. It’s also not the best option for severe acne.

Q: How long does it take for Proactiv to start working?

A: Individual results may vary, some people see results as early as 3 weeks, but on the average, visible results start within 6-8 weeks. Many of our customers find that a complete clearing of their complexion takes anywhere from 3-6 months, as claimed by the manufacturer.

Q: Which Proactiv is best?

A: The original Proactiv solution is probably the best choice for treating sensitive skin primarily affected by pimples.

The Final Word on Proactiv

Proactiv is an acne solution line of products. It claims to help both teens and adults eradicate and prevent acne breakouts. The brand highlights that it uses trained dermatologists and that with their market experience, they know what works for acne-prone skin. Additionally, the main ingredients used in these products have scientific references that mention their effectiveness.

Also, this product line is a Kendall Jenner which makes it all the more appealing, especially if you are a fan. On the contrary, the acne formula may worsen your condition by causing a flare-up. It may as well cause a burning sensation.

As always, the list of similar brands such as Mary Kay, Murad Skin Care, Crepe Erase, and Plexaderm is long and you can always get something that works for you.

Up NEXTArbonne Products and Nu Skin

Dermspotlight Beauty

Product recommendations, skin care tips, and how-tos, delivered to your inbox.

Your First Review of Proactiv Awaits

Review this product & share your experiences with other customers. Don't see your question? Ask away!

Average Customer Rating:3.7 / 5.0 
3 Customer Reviews

Rating Snapshot:

Excellent 
0
Great 
2
Average 
1
Poor 
0
Bad 
0
Bottom Line: 100% would recommend it to a friend
Reset sorting

    It's great and I recommend it to anyone

    By Rosemarie Prudhomme 

    Overall Experience:

    I have been receiving lots of compliments since I started using this product. I find it works so I’m using it daily.

    Still waiting for optimum results

    By Christina R. 

    Overall Experience:

    My skin has been through some pretty tough times- cystic acne, multiple sunburns and many years working out in the elements. At 55 years old, I am not happy with what I see in the mirror. I am only one month into taking this product and so far have not really seen any results. I will continue to take it diligently for 3 months and reassess whether or not to continue to take it based on what I see with regard to my skin results.

    Smoother Skin after Using Proactiv

    By Deborah S. 

    Overall Experience:

    At 69, I wasn’t expecting much change to my facial skin. However, I’ve been pleasantly surprised. The acne scars from my youth are less noticeable and my skin is smoother and more evenly toned.

×

Add a YouTube video