I'm now giving you my final and third "formal" update since I started using Obagi. On my second update I was more than half-way through the first system, and was not sure that I was that impressed with the routine. Since than my mind has completely changed, and my skin has never looked better. I was recommended the use of the Obagi system by a Plastic and Reconstructive Surgeon (female and Asian) that had terrible melasma, and when I saw her I was amazed as all of her skin discoloration was completely gone, and her skin looked impeccable. She explained to me that Obagi had done this for her skin. So...I was convinced and agreed to give it a try. She gave me the complete Obagi system to include washing gel, toner, clear (hydroquinone - to get rid of brown spots/melasma), Exforderm Forte ( an alpha hydroxy acid consisting of 6% glycolic acid and 4% lactic acid), blender and Tretinoin (.05% (prescription strength Retin A which comes in .02%, .05% and .1%), and lastly sunscreen. So...the many aforementioned products are what constitute the whole Obagi system.
When I first started out, as stated in my earlier posts, I had a hard time with the harsher chemicals in the Tretinoin as they caused peeling, some small sores and general skin irritation especially around my chin and lower area by my nose/upper lip. In reading many women's experiences on this site I tended to notice that despite these "warning" signs of over irritation the women continued to use the Tretinoin everyday without ever taking a break causing their irritation to get worse and worse. After calling my doctor she advised me to use common sense and back off the Tretinoin to every 2-3 days until my skin became acclimated to the product, and by all means to stay out of the sun.
Following her advice I soon noticed that my skin became less irritated, and that I could use all of the products as prescribed on a daily basis. Then the opportunity came up for a trip to Hawaii. I knew that I would not be getting my face in the sun as these products are strongly contraindicated with sun exposure; that said, I decided to not use the Exfoderm Forte and Tretinoin whatsoever while I was in Hawaii - this seemed to work out fine. When I returned home from my 2 week trip I thought that I could just pick up where I left off, and that was not the case. My skin, was yet again, super sensitive to the Tretinoin, and I had to use it very sparingly only a couple of times a week.
Well, since that last review I've returned to see my doctor, bought another round of the aforementioned Obagi system, and I can't tell you how beautiful my skin now looks. Even my doctor was shocked at the marked improvement in my 55 year old skin. The picture that you see posted of me in a bathing suit was before I ever started using Obagi. Obagi has removed at least 10 years of aging off of my face. I had brown sun damage spots - one located in my eyebrow; thereby, making it almost impossible to remove, two others on my left cheek that were rather large, and other's on my temple areas. My skin texture was somewhat course with enlarged pores, and uneven skin texture and color, and I had all of these problems after NOT laying in the sun for over 20 years.
I'm now into the early to middle use of my second Obagi treatment session and my skin just keeps getting better and better. I wanted to note after reading some reviews on this site that some women stated that they had uneven discoloration from the hydroquinone (Clear) and still had dark patches, etc. I have not had this problem, and it may be due to the fact that I apply the Clear rather liberally to all parts of my face to include my neck twice a day as directed. My skin is a lovely, even tone with not a single brown spot in sight. The brown spots were the strangest things of all as one day they just started peeling off, and I could take a tweezer and very, very gently remove these small brown layers of skin (mind you not digging, or causing bleeding, but just gently scraping off the old brown skin that had been sitting on the top of nice healthy skin for years). Needless to say, I no longer have any brown spots!!!!
My pores have minimized in size, and my skin hasn't been this soft since the day I was born. I have no breakouts of any kind, and my fine wrinkles are almost all gone. Should I continue - virtually everyday someone will stop me on the street and ask me what I do to take care of my skin, and that is with absolutely no make-up on whatsoever!!!
I don't think that the firm that is selling Obagi came up with some miracle cure, but what they did that has made them so effective and successful is that they have packaged all the new advances for ,aging women/men's skin care in one simple to use package which has been proven to make the patients more compliant; thereby giving the patient a better result because all the products you need are in one place, numbered, with simple directions to follow to give you the best skin possible. The fact that all the products that you need for the best skin possible are numbered, at your fingertips sitting on your sink morning and evening make it easy for you to keep up the regime - ease of use equals compliance, and that's smart marketing. It is possible to go and buy all of these products separately, but the compliance issue then becomes a problem, and the amazing results don't seem to happen ( this comes from statistical studies done by other's with no financial backing in Obagi). Doing the math given that the Obagi system costs around $460-$500 for a 3 month supply, used twice a day, the cost comes out to $5.11 a day to have beautiful youthful looking skin, and that my friends is quite a bargain in more ways than one. I hope this final review will encourage other's to try what I consider to be money well spent. Remember you probably spend more on your money latte than you would with Obagi to have beautiful and youthful skin. Best of luck...
This will be my last review of Obagi, but I will have some new ones coming up on "safe" lasers, and injectables that hopefully you'll find interesting. I must say this the most bang for my buck, and the best non-invasive skin care products that truly met my high standards, and the guarantees of the manufacturer, is the Obagi System. The Obagi System has fulfilled their claims and made me look much younger, and better, than I ever could have imagined. I will be recommending this regime to all women I know - young, or old, as it is a product worth it's weight in gold, and you're never too young to start taking care of your skin.