Neutrogena skinID(TM) Review

Neutrogena skinID(TM) is a unique acne treatment system that is specifically geared toward your individual skin type and acne needs.  Those interested in using skinID take a special quiz that takes “into account everyone’s unique acne skin care needs in order to help one person at a time” find the perfect skin care solution to achieve clear, beautiful skin.  The Neutrogena skinID Evaluation is designed to be the next best thing to a visit with a dermatologist.

Questions on the Evaluation test cover all aspects of each individual’s circumstances – severity and type of acne, normal skin care routine, skin type, age and lifestyle habits, and the environment you live in.  According to the Neutrogena experts, all of these factors play a role in why your acne forms and which treatments will best treat it.

Neutrogena has conducted numerous clinical trials to prove each skinID “regimen’s effectiveness for achieving clear skin results like never before.”  These trials have also shown skinID to be twice “as effective as Proactiv(TM) in clearing acne with results in half the time.”  By week eight of using their personalized skinID acne system, 100% of patients in the clinical trial “showed clearer and healthier looking skin.”

Company Information

Neutrogena(R) Corporation was founded in 1930 and acquired by Johnson & Johnson in 1994.  They are well-known worldwide as makers of premium hair and skin care products.  The Neutrogena skinID division has its own file with the Better Business Bureau and has been a BBB Accredited Business since February 2009.  The company receives a grade of B from the BBB, likely because of the newness of the file.  Of the 39 complaints filed against skinID in the last 36 months, all have been resolved satisfactorily.

Product Specifications

After completing the skinID Evaluation, you will be shown the three skinID acne treatment products chosen specifically for you.  There is not a way to see a complete list of the products that make up the entire skinID line.  To give you an idea of what type of products are included in the line, I will tell you about the three recommended for my skin.

Neutrogena skinID Foam Cleanser combines 0.5% salicylic acid with botanical extracts “to fight breakouts and reduce redness and irritation at the same time.”  This oil-free foaming cleanser will “instantly clear oil” without overly drying the skin.  Though the product description says it contains botanical extracts, I could not recognize the name of any botanical on the ingredients list.  No matter which skin cleanser is recommended for you, it should be used daily as part of your total skin care regimen.

Fragrance-free Anti-Acne Treatment uses 2.5% prescription-grade benzoyl peroxide to target “acne-causing bacteria and actively treat acne for hours after application.”  It should be applied daily in a thin layer to the entire face after cleansing.

The final step in my recommended skinID treatment is to use “ultra-soft pads” which contain 2% salicylic acid and alcohol.  The pads are designed to dissolve oil and clean “deep into pores to exfoliate dirt and dead skin cells” to help keep skin acne free.

Other than the reference to botanical extracts in Foam Cleanser, all three ingredient list show a mixture of pharmaceutical compounds.  No warnings or potential side effects to the skinID treatments are discussed on the website.

Where to Buy Neutrogena skinID(TM)

Neutrogena skin(TM) kits may be purchased from the official skinID website.  The products are not available in stores.


The cost for a complete skinID acne treatment system is approximately $40 for a one-month supply.

Return Policy

Neutrogena skinID(TM) comes with a “60 day money back guarantee.”  If you’re not completely satisfied with the results of using your skinID regimen, you may return used or unused products to Neutrogena for a full refund.  See the skinID website for complete details.


Neutrogena skinID doesn’t get as many reviews as some acne treatment systems.  Of those that I found, many were negative and posted by people who claimed the entire system is a scam.  Several comments I read suggested that the skinID products are identical to less expensive products available in local stores.  Some have accused Neutrogena of “repackaging their drug store products with new labels and smaller sizes.”  Some people are skeptical that the skinID Evaluation is worth taking.  They feel that answering a series of questions can’t possibly enable a computer software program to figure out the perfect acne treatment system for you.  As one reviewer writes, “I don’t think it’s as innovative or custom-made as they’d like you to think.”

I noticed, however, that nearly all of these comments slamming the skinID line appeared to be from people who had not actually used the products.  Though these posters had plenty to say about their opinions that skinID is “nothing special,” nearly all of them had nothing to say about their personal experiences with the products.

In the few posts I could find from people who had used Neutrogena skinID, I found some pros and cons.  One reviewer writes, “It dries even oily skin too much.”  Another agrees and says, “within two minutes my skin felt SO tight and dry that I had to SLATHER moisturizer all over.”

On the other hand, a skinID user who tried the Cream Cleanser says she “had no issues with redness or after wash tightness.”  The same reviewer says that she had trouble applying makeup over Anti-Acne Treatment and decided to use it only at night because of that.  Overall, she says that she loved the system and that it cleared her cystic lesions.

In addition to the problem of applying makeup over Anti-Acne Treatment, a different user writes that Cream Cleanser did not do a good job removing makeup, which required her to add the additional step of a separate cleanser to her daily skin care regimen.

Like most products, Neutrogena skinID gets good ratings because it really works for some people.  Does it work for everyone?  No – whether it will work for you depends on your personal skin type and, according to at least one reviewer, “whether or not the Evaluation gives you the right products.”