Neutrogena skin iD: Product Review

What: Christiana tests skin iD, a new product by Neutrogena Dermatologics, is a personalized acne solution system that’s clinically proven to treating and preventing acne.

The Lowdown: I don’t have much of an acne problem (well, at least not since 8th grade, in which acne + frizzy hair combined for a wide range of issues) but I duly filled out the evaluation. A few days later, I received a cream cleanser, an anti-acne treatment, a hydrator, and a spot acne treatment. The first three are to be used twice a day, while the last one is for emergencies. The cleanser went on first, and my face immediately felt cool, tingly and refreshed. Next, were the anti-acne treatment and hydrator. The instructions directed me to wait for the anti-acne treatment to dry before applying the hydrator, and then wait for the hydrator to dry, which was pesky since I wanted to go to sleep at night or get my day started in the mornings.

After each treatment, my face felt relaxed and cool to the touch. A few days into the ritual, my skin felt and looked smoother. One problem though—the cleanser doesn’t remove makeup well, which meant adding another step before everything else. Smooth skin is all well and good, but I don’t want stray eyeliner and mascara running down my cheeks. That ain’t cute.

Yea or Nay: Yea—judging by the changes I noticed on myself, I think the more potent versions of the cleanser would work well on acne problems.

Buy it: @, $39.99

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  1. Jennifer Booker says

    Just wanted to tell of my recent experience with Neutrogena. For the record, ProActiv works just as well, if not better, than Skin ID, and they don’t treat their customers so badly. Here is a copy of 2 emails sent today to Neutrogena regarding my experience:

    From: Jennifer Booker
    Sent: Tuesday, December 29, 2009 11:00 AM
    To: ‘’
    Subject: Extremely Dissatisfied (former) Customer
    Importance: High

    To Whom it May Concern (or more accurately, not concern in the least, based on my recent experience with what you call “Customer Service”),

    I’m writing to express my extreme dissatisfaction with Neutrogena. I ordered your Skin ID product for my daughter, and received a few shipments. While she seemed to like the product, it was just piling up too much, as you are apparently very optimistic regarding how much of the product your customers are actually using. I called on June 30, 2009 to cancel our membership for this reason. I spoke with a representative named Ryan who advised that we could simply put our account “on hold,” which he assured me would mean there would be no further shipments unless we called, and would allow for member pricing (see transaction 494808). I agreed to this solely based on his statement that no further product would be shipped without authorization. That was my first mistake.

    Naturally, Ryan’s offer proved false, as this past Saturday morning (Dec 26th) I was reconciling my checkbook on line and discovered that there was a $50.14 charge applied by you on December 23rd. I immediately called and spoke with Debbie, who stated that my account was not canceled as I thought it was, but rather that I had authorized an extension on shipping back in June. She also stated that an email confirming this had been sent. At this time, I did not have my notes with me regarding my phone call in June, and explained that I never authorized any additional shipment and that I never received any email to this effect. Debbie did process a cancellation on the account (see transaction 669695), and explained that after I received and returned the product, I would have to wait up to 45 days for the credit to be refunded. This is outrageous to me, as this shipment was never authorized! Debbie stated that there were no supervisors in, and that the only one who “returned phone calls” would not be in until Monday. Debbie took my number and assured me that I would receive a call from a supervisor on Monday. I believed her – mistake number 2.

    After finding my notes from the original call in June with Ryan, which confirmed that I never authorized additional shipments, I waited for my call to come. This morning (Tuesday Dec 29th), I spend nearly 20 minutes on hold attempting to resolve this matter. I finally spoke with a supervisor named Melony and again explained the situation to her. Melony offered the standard, seminar-driven, “I understand your frustration, but…” but proved to be no help whatsoever. My request is simple. Return my money, which you were never authorized to take in the first place, and do it immediately. There is no reasonable explanation for the fact that this request is not being processed right away. Melony stated that she confirmed the email was successfully sent, which is all fine and good, but I never got it. Further, I told Melony to pull up the recorded phone call with Ryan from June 30, which would indeed support that he told me no shipments would be sent UNLESS WE CALLED. After putting me on hold yet again, Melony came back on the line to say that she would have to reach out to your IT department in order to retrieve the archived telephone recording since it has been so long. After she listens to it, she has stated that she will then call me back. That is where we stand as of this moment. I am waiting for the returned call in absolute shock at the lack of respect and apathy with which your organization evidently feels is an appropriate way to deal with your customers.

    For $50.00 you have chosen to throw a customer away. I don’t care how good you think your product is, is it not good enough to have to endure this ridiculous treatment! This could have been resolved easily enough. I understand that mistakes are made and I also understand that Ryan and I could have come away with different interpretations of how our conversation in June actually went. It is for this reason that I am truly hoping that Melony is able to find the original recording, as she seems to be implying that I am lying by making such a big deal out of finding it. You could have simply apologized for the miscommunication and processed a refund of my money. But that wasn’t your approach. Instead, I have paid for a product that I had not received (until yesterday, Dec 28th) that I did not request, and I continually wait for Neutrogena to do the right thing. Instead, you have simply said, “Screw you, Customer; we’ll process the refund whenever we get around to it!” These are really tough times for you to be so cavalier and to treat your customers with such disdain. Well done, Neutrogena.

    I am still waiting for Melony to return my call and to do the right thing (i.e. process the refund TODAY). I have very low expectations that she will, at this point, but still, I wait. In the meantime, I want it known that you made what could have been an small matter into a very big deal. In the process, you’ve lost a customer for more than just Skin ID. If you’ve done nothing else right in this situation, you have at least accomplished that.

    Jennifer Booker


    So, I just received a call from Brain, as Melony has evidently left for the day (what a surprise). According to Brian, who is speaking according to Melony, Ryan advised me on our June 30th call that he would send an email, and that I was also told when the new shipment date would be. I call BULL on that, and asked to listen to the phone call myself. Helpful Brian was unable to accommodate that request (another surprise), but gladly took my information to leave for Melony, who will be returning on Wednesday. So, I now get to wait until Wednesday for some more baloney from your well trained “Customer Service” supervisory staff.

    Ultimately, you will have to process this credit anyway. I remained baffled that you’d rather make your customers wait for money you will have to return anyway while you call them liars, all in the name of Procedure. But, at least Brian “understands.” I’ll take comfort in that, I suppose.

    Does anyone else find this as utterly pointless as I do?

  2. anonymous says

    Despite the fresh-faced Hayden Penettiere’s endorsement, something is COMPLETELY off with this product…or lack there of. I’ve done my utmost to try and just get some one to tell me what the Skin ID product line consists of, and what I got in response, from both customer service reps AND EMPLOYEES closer to the brand, is “there is no line, its customizable.”
    Well its a thoughtful idea to try and customize a skin solution for consumers, but not telling them what the products even are (aside from what? three images they have on their site) before getting credit card information is beyond “fishy” to me. Could it possibly be that the trustworthy brand has turned to sketchy? Would it be even within out realm of thinking that the lack of transparency (and bad reviews 90% of the time) means that Skin ID is misleading consumers into thinking they pay for a “personalized” skin solution. What if there is no customization, or very little of it, and consumers are sent the same products no matter their “skin ID”? I know this is speculation, but why on earth would Skin ID not release even the names of their products? If I missed something and someone can prove me wrong, please…I’d love to be wrong.

  3. Ashley says

    i bought skin id thinking it would would better and faster than proactive like the commercial said. but instead it didnt work at all if anything it made me break out more. the “moisturizer” was just a gel that laid over your skin and made it feel super tight and if you rubbed your face it would peel off. it made my skin extremely dry i immediately switched back to proactive which at least did what it said.

  4. Ashley says

    oh i forgot and when i tried to return it for the “60 day money back guarantee” it wouldnt let me once i purchased it it said nothing more about a full refund.

  5. Brandie says

    I’ve been fighting acne for a very long time. At 23 almost 24 I now fight mostly blackheads, blemishes, acne scaring, and redness with the very occasional pimple.

    Proactive does not work. It works to a certain point and basically stops. It is great if you have a very bad acne problem, we’re talking high school break out embarrassed to take a school photo type acne not I have a little red dot by my chin from time to time.

    I even stepped up a notch to clinique, which don’t get me wrong it is great but again doesn’t work on blackheads or blemishes.

    Help anyone??

  6. samiii says

    I recently used skin id and instead of it working like it said it burnt my face, my eyes were almost swollen shut, my entire face was a huge swollen rash that was very itchy and burnt extremely bad. I was VERY disappointed in the product, and when we tried to cancel the order customer service was very unprofessional and rude!

    I wouldn’t recommend this product to ANYONE!

  7. Brandi says

    I agree with Barbara. I was just about to drop $40 to order Skind ID but thought I’d do a bit of research first. So glad I did!
    I guess my quest to fix my skin isn’t over after all.

  8. Jennifer says

    I am actually calling Neutrogena today to tell them to stop sending me their products. As a skin care therapist, I know it takes at least 6 weeks of using a product before the skin turns over and you can see the full results. You will sometimes break out if you are using something new because your skin is not used to it. I just cannot abide a product that doesn’t even remove my makeup. I thought I might switch from Dermalogica, which works for me, but at the moment I have a few financial restraints – I thought I might save a few bucks using the skin iD line. I don’t recommend the line. If it can’t even remove the mineral makeup I use, what else doesn’t it remove?

  9. Erin says

    I guess when something sounds too good to be true, it usually is. I figured I could try the product for 60 days like their website said and if it didn’t work I could send it back. Unfortunately, that’s not the case, and unfortunately it didn’t work for me at all. On the main page of their website, it says “Simply try our products for 60 days. If you’re not totally satisfied, return your products – even if they’re empty – for a complete refund of the purchase price (less shipping and handling). What they don’t tell you, unless you go delving into small print, is that they count the 60 days from when you place the order, NOT from when you receive it and actually start “trying” it like they say in the big print on their website. So when I tried to call to return it, they told me that I was charged on April 9 and so would have had to return it on June 9, and according to my tracking number I did not even receive the product until April 20! They would not work with me on the phone even though I talked to the supervisor and insisted they weren’t doing anything wrong. Well, I’m letting you know now, don’t make the same mistake I did! It doesn’t work, it DEFINITELY doesn’t moisturize (I had to buy other moisturizer), and there is no 60 days of trying the product and being able to get your money back. They are just trying to trick you into buying their wayy too expensive product every 3 months.

  10. Jared says

    Customer service is the worst I have ever experienced! I am on my 3rd attempt to cancel my membership. They refused to credit my account back. I spent 1 hour 6 min on hold today to try to cancel! They must make their money by getting people caught up in the cancel process… I will never buy a Neutrogena product again because of this experience, no matter how well it works!

  11. Marcie says

    I am currently on hold with Skin ID and it has been 52 min so far. First, they sent me the wrong face wash and when I called to ask about it they just said “The one you normally get it out of stock so we sent you that one. When we get the other one in, we will send it to you free of charge” It has been 2 months and I havent recieved anything. The face wash they sent me feels like you’re rubbing lotion on your face, its gross and makes me break out. Their whole idea of skin care is that its based on you’re piticular skin type… why would they send you something completely different and expect it to work?? And I had to call them and ask about it, no “sorry for the inconvience….”. So now im STILL on hold (55 min and counting)to see if they are going to charge me for this next shipment or not. Oh and I called monday and it said “we are currently experiencing higher than nornmal call volume. To get a faster response email us.” So….i emailed them. That was Monday and its Friday now and still NO response!!! They must not care at all about keeping customers happy or keeping them at all. I was with Proactive for years and NEVER had any problems.

  12. nicole says

    I was thinking about switching from proactive bc sometimes my face gets used to it, but I think ill stick to my proactive after reading all this.

  13. Anon says

    My story is scarily similiar the the ones listed here. I wish I’d taken the time to do some research before purchasing this product.

    My second shipment had the incorrect Neutrogena SkinID facewash along with a note explaining that mine was out of stock and they’d send me the correct one when it was available again (free of charge). Frustrating but these things happen. I wasn’t in love with the product initially and didn’t use the substitute (14 – it felt like I was rubbing cream into my face – not a good facewash feeling) but I was willing to give this a chance.

    I lost patience when the next shipment I received had the incorrect product again. I called to cancel my membership (you can’t cancel via email). After waiting on hold for FAR TOO LONG I emailed them asking them to reach out to me via phone or work with me via email on this. Nada. I just received another shipment which reminded me that this still hasn’t been sorted out so I am on hold again (literally 30 minutes in) as I type this. (Note: I called earlier today and after 15 mins hung up and called back selecting the “Product Questions” option. Surprise: I was only on hold for 4 mins. Another surprise: they couldn’t transfer me directly to a rep who could help me.)

    Luckily I kept my Proactive account open while I gave this a try so was able to continue with that. Not only is the service better with Proactive, the product is better too. I wanted to try Neutrogena SkinID not because I’m dissatisfied w/Proactive, but just because I’d been with them for a while and I thought it was time to check out the market a bit and see if there’s anything I might like it better. Mistake.

  14. Trish says

    I’ve been using skin ID since Nov. of last year(about 9 months) and I couldn’t be happier with the results. I was battling adult break outs. I have incredibly sensitive skin and in the past have tried proactive which burns and dries out my face. I can honestly say that I have not had even one pimple since about a month after I started using this product. From age 24-27 I was having several break outs a month and they stopped almost immediately upon beginning this regimen. Any time I feel or see the beginning of a pimple I use the spot treatment and it never surfaces. The cleanser is fresh and non drying. The hydrator at first dries out the area where you put it, but once the moisturizer is on your face is perfectly dewy. The moisturizer has a very light feel to it, as opposed to most cream moisturizers that feel very heavy. I have very fair skin and was disappointed that the moisturizer doesn’t have spf, so I now add in a sunscreen with my moisturizer in the morning. The only issue I had was that I was not using my entire tube in a month and was accumulating the product. I simply went to the website and changed it so that instead of shipping every month it ships every three months. If that proves to be too infrequent I will just go and have it shipped every other month, it’s very easy to change unless of course you have no common sense and cannot navigate the internet. I have recommended this product to many people and will continue to do so because of how satisfied I’ve been.

  15. Katelyn says

    I was also thinking about purchasing SkinID and like someone else, I decided to do some research. Now I have decided to go with Pro-Activ or Clinique.

  16. Christine says

    The product didnt work for my daughter… that doesnt mean it’s a bad product. The problem I had was getting a hold of customer service to cancel it. I kept trying several times and would get busy signals which a customer service rep there named Kirbi said no one had complained about that but me. She cancelled the subscription and would not give me credit for a shipment I just received even after I offered to ship back…. she basically said I could but it was a waste of my time. She was trying to get me upset so she could hang up on me. She wouldnt let you finish a sentence… very rude! I will never buy a product from that company again. Don’t auto pay for any product with this company… you wont be able to reach them to cancel and they will call you a liar… try to get you irate so they can hang up on you and they will not credit you.

  17. teresa says

    Buyer Beware. When you purchase Skin ID, you are entering a MEMBERSHIP. I was not aware of this and when I tried to return the second (unrequested) shipment I was told “too late”. No return, no refund. Customer service be darned all they care about is the money. The disappointing part is my daughter doesn’t even like the product! It was way to drying and irritated her skin.

  18. Katie says

    I have tried everything to help my acne, proactive, murad, clean and clear, clinique, stidex. They all were a dissapointment. I was so fed up with my acne, and when I saw skin id on tv I got really excited. My mom decided to let my try it. It seemed to work at first, but then it began to irritate my skin and my cystic acne came back. I returned the empty bottles within about 40 days, which cost $8 in shipping. It was extremely hard to find out how to cancel my membership on the skin id website, so I emailed them. I got an email back the next day saying that my membership had been canceled. About a month later, another skin id kit was sent to me, and $50 was charged to my mom’s credit card. My mom called the company and they said they didn’t understand why we were sent another kit, because they found on their computer that we had cancelled the account. Plus, the original $30 for the trial kit was never put back on my mom’s credit card. They said to keep the kit and that they would reimburse the $30, and the $50 (which included the shipping). My mom checked her credit card statement today, and the $30 was credited, but not the full $50 (they didn’t give us back the shipping). My mom spent about 20 minutes on the phone with the company and the lady hung up on my mom. She called back and asked for a manager; they lady called her a liar, and told her to calm down. She also said they couldn’t reimburse her shipping cost because their “computers were down”. This company is a total scam. They are charging us for their mistake. My mom will be calling the BBB. I will never again order anything through mail order. I am currently trying a new skin care kit called “No Zit Sherlock” and it is working beautifully! You don’t have to order it on the phone (I found it at sephora).

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