Does Proactiv Plus Work?

Proactiv Plus is a heavily marketed name brand for fighting acne. It is found to work best for bacterial acne in some cases, but others find that over the counter medications and home remedies work just as well.

Millions of people of all ages suffer from acne breakouts, but it’s most common in adolescents and those with especially oily skin. If you’re one of these sufferers, you’ve no doubt heard of Proactiv Plus. Between the brand’s celebrity endorsements, nearly iconic infomercials, and mall kiosks all over the country, this is one of the most well-known brands in the realm of skin clearing treatments. The original Proactiv even received numerous awards. These honors have led to Proactiv becoming the bestselling acne remedy of all time, according to Monica’s Beauty.

But, does all the hype mean the products themselves are any good? There’s plenty of examples of products that obtained lots of buzz, but then disappointed when actually put to use. While various acne treatments will work for different people, there is reason to believe that Proactiv Plus is more good marketing than innovative breakthrough.

Proactiv Plus

Creators of proactiv, Katie Rodan, M.D. and Kathy Fields, M.D, say that the new version is a totally new creation than the first system. Like the original, it works as a three part daily regimen consisting of a cleanser, toner, and moisturizer. The active ingredient in the wash and toner is benzoyl peroxide, while the “hydrator” contains salicylic acid as its active ingredient.

These ingredients are some of the most commonly used in the acne fighting realm, and many over the counter products contain these same acne fighting ingredients. That said, they continue to be used because they do work for some.

The three-step system first involves using a small amount of cleanser and washing the face by massaging the cleanser into pores using a circular motion. Once the skin is pat dry, toner is applied using a clean cloth or cotton ball. The toner must be completely dry before moving on the third step – the hydrator. Moisturizer is applied with the tips of the fingers in circular motions. Only a small amount should be used, as salicylic acid can dry the skin.

Other products can be purchased, but it is noted on the Proactiv site that these additional purchases are not necessary to see results from the main Proactiv system.

Does Proactiv Plus Actually Work?

The new Proactiv Plus hasn’t received very favorable reviews overall, with Amazon and Acne.org reviewers mostly citing negative experiences. The most common complaints were itching, excessive drying of the skin, and redness. Others claim the products simply do not work at reducing acne.

While the main ingredients are highly recommended by dermatologists for those who need them, it seems that actual customers are less enthusiastic by their results. For half the price, you could also buy similar products that might work just as well. While Proactiv does have additional ingredients to set it apart from drugstore brands, this doesn’t necessarily translate to a better product.

Some believe that Proactiv may be most effective at treating acne that is bacterial in nature, but that it doesn’t do as good a job at reducing blackheads and whiteheads. This requires additional study to confirm.

The Verdict

Those with severe acne might see some improvement using Proactiv Plus. Those who would rather save a little money might find a drugstore brand works equally as well, so these can be attempted first if desired. There are also many home remedies that utilize ingredients that have been found to help, so those are also worth looking into.

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