Find out what Obagi Nu-Derm is exactly and see if it is something that is right for you.

You may have heard of Obagi Nu-Derm, but if you are like the majority, you have no idea what it is or how it works. This skin care line is available primarily from your dermatologist and addresses a variety of skin concerns. Whether you are frustrated by sun damage, are trying to fight signs of aging, trying to get mild acne under control or all the above, these products could be a wonderful solution. Learn more about what it is, how it works and what the down side is to the product line.  

What is Obagi Nu-Derm?

The Nu-Derm line of skin care products from the Obagi brand is a multi-step program that overhauls your skin in a sort of “boot camp” that initially lasts 18 weeks. You can use the Nu-Derm line after from the first 18 weeks, or use the pieces in a different regimen, though the 18-week program is the typical starting point for users of this product line. The skin care boot camp is dubbed as such because it is hard-core, with significant levels of active ingredients that will cause peeling, redness and sensitivity. These side effects are typically only seen in the first few weeks of the program. If you wonder why someone would want to use products that do this, you are probably someone who will not ever want or need this product line. Users of these products typically have significant concerns with hyperpigmentation on their face along with concerns about acne, fine lines and wrinkles and skin elasticity.

The main products in the line are Foaming Gel cleanser, Toner, Clear, Exfoderm or Exfoderm Forte, Blender and a Obagi sunscreen.

How Does Obagi Nu-Derm Work?

The combination of prescription-grade skin lighteners, prescription retinoids and highly effective exfoliants provides the amazing results seen from the Nu-Derm line. The product line also features cleansers for either normal or dry skin that remove makeup along with a toner to prepare the skin to allow the active ingredients that follow to penetrate well. The prescription-grade skin-lightening ingredient is hydroquinone, which also comes in a lower concentration able to be purchased over the counter. Hydroquinone at the higher prescription-grade concentration penetrates deeply into the skin to break up areas where there is too much melanin, which is the source of hyperpigmentation. The ingredient hydroquinone is not without controversy, however, and is not approved for use in the United Kingdom.

The retinoids that are paired with the hydroquinone are all derivatives of Vitamin A. There are multiple options when it comes to retinoids on the market but the most well-known are Retin-A and Tazorac. These products are available by prescription only and are typically not covered by insurance unless they are prescribed to treat acne or other similar skin conditions. If these products are used for cosmetic reasons, they are not covered. Retinoids can be used to treat acne, aging concerns and other skin conditions.

The exfoliants in the Nu-Derm line are separate ingredients used in the Exfoderm or Exfoderm Forte products. The Exfoderm Forte is a more aggressive lotion with both glycolic and lactic acids to take away the top layers of dead skin cells. These two alpha hydroxy acids at the concentrations used is particularly potent and can create a “stingling” sensation. The Exfoderm product is a bit gentler because it omits the glycolic acid from the lotion and is only for those with the most sensitive skin.  

How Do You Get Obagi Nu-Derm?

Because two of the Nu-Derm products are available by prescription only, you need to visit your dermatologist’s office to get the products. The Obagi website has a search feature that allows you to find dermatologists in your area that offer their products. Technically the only products within the line that you have to buy from a doctor are the ones that contain hydroquinone, Clear and Blender. You also have to get either a prescription strength retinoid or a prescription for one from your doctor.

Some people will use only the non-prescription products in the Nu-Derm line to maintain overall skin health and appearance. If you only want the items that do not require a prescription there are various places to buy them other than your doctor’s office, however, buyer beware. Some unauthorized Obagi retailers may be offering expired or inauthentic products. Make sure to read reviews of the products by users on the site where you intend to buy and try to confirm that those reviews are not just from Obagi users, but users who purchased their products from that particular web retailer.

What Kind of Results Can You Get With Obagi Nu-Derm?

Skin care products promise all sorts of results and do not always deliver, but with Obagi that is not the case. If you follow the Nu-Derm regimen to the letter, your results can be amazing. The product line will erase significant sun damage and other hyperpigmentation, will decrease fine lines, control acne and even improve skin elasticity. As with most things in life though, no pain no gain. The first few weeks of the regimen your skin will assuredly look worse, with more pimples, redness and peeling. If you can make your way through this stage and get to the other side though your skin will show the benefits. Many people are turned off by the side effects of the first stage of the Obagi Nu-Derm products.

How Much Does Obagi Nu-Derm Cost?

The products in the Obagi Nu-Derm line range in price individually from around $35 to around $100. When you start adding it all up, considering there are six products within the line you need to use to see optimal results, it is not cheap. Your dermatologist’s office may offer a free gift with purchase, or have a package that can save you a bit of money off of the full retail price of every individual product, so be sure to ask and be an informed consumer. And remember, if you end up trying to find a deal on the products and buy from and unauthorized retailer you may be getting counterfeit products or those that have already expired.