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Treatments - DERMAdoctor - Physical Chemistry

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rated 4.2(46 reviews)

  • Average Rating: 4.2
  • 76% would buy again
  • Package Quality: 3.6
  • Price: $$$$

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rated 1 of 5 on 3/3/2014 1:06:00 PM More reviews by Beatrice28

Age: 36-43 Skin: Sensitive, Fair-Medium, Not Sure Hair: Brunette, Other, Other Eyes: Green

Agree with the reviewer below. I bought this scrub, the Wrinkle Revenge Eye Balm, and the Calm Cool & Corrected cream from a persistent Dermadoctor saleswoman. Wow, they have cheap, awful packaging! After only two weeks, the press-down dispenser completely stopped working. I had to twist off the clunky top and dip my fingers into it every use, which I wasn't happy about since it cost $75! The same happened with the Calm, Cool and Corrected and the top of the Wrinkle Revenge Eye Balm cracked off!!

Concerning the product itself, this is really just an overpriced and harsh scrub. I massaged it LIGHTLY around my face but it still left me ruddy, and I broke out in tiny red bumps on my cheeks a couple days after every time. Will not be trying any more Dermadoctor products!!
If you don't have sensitive skin and are looking for a microdermabrasion cream, try Derma E's Microdermabrasion Scrub. It's one-third the price and works well.

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rated 2 of 5 on 6/23/2013 5:42:00 AM More reviews by lovekira

Age: 19-24 Skin: Sensitive, Fair-Medium, Not Sure Hair: Black, Other, Other Eyes: Brown

For starters, I have sensitive, rash-prone skin. I also began to develop milia underneath my eyes about a year ago. I asked one of those skincare 'specialists' at Sephora about the milia, and she recommended this product and gave me a sample. I fell in love with the sample - it seemed to 'scrape' off the milia and left my skin feeling ultra smooth and soft. Eventually, my milia came back, so I saved some money and bought myself a bottle of this stuff... and that's when the trouble started.

For starters, the design of the bottle is kind of awful. I could never get the pump dispenser to work, so I ended up unscrewing the entire top and just dabbing my fingers into the product. Then there's how my skin began to react to this product: it no longer got rid of my milia, and it began to sting like crazy on areas of my face that are rash-prone, as well as areas that are usually safe. Not surprisingly, I developed rashes in the spots that stung.

I went back to Sephora and spoke to another skincare employee, and she seemed surprised that I was using it, as she feels that this is a very harsh product, better reserved for women with older skin. She was also wary that I was using it in the delicate undereye area (where my milia are).

Despite that conversation, I continued to try using this product every so often, each time hoping, "Okay, I've let my skin settle for a week (or two) now and currently show no signs of rashes - maybe THIS time I won't get a rash!" ...And of course, each time I do. Yes, it leaves my skin super soft and smooth... but it also breaks me out into rashes. I've tried using it in various different ways, too: on wet skin, on dry skin, leaving it on for a few minutes, rinsing it off immediately, not massaging/scrubbing with the beads, etc... still no luck.

Final thoughts: if you're rash-prone like I am, I would not recommend this product at all. If you've got normal skin though, then the smoothing/exfoliating benefits will probably suit you.

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rated 3 of 5 top reviewer on 5/4/2012 2:50:00 AM More reviews by peunwha

Age: 30-35 Skin: Dry, Fair-Medium, Neutral Hair: Brown, Straight, Fine Eyes: Brown

ya I admit that this surely makes my skin feel softer and smoother after I use it.


however it doesn't peel off enough the black head / white head on my nose and flakies on my face..
to me, it works as much as usual brown sugar does...
so what's the point to spend 75$ for this.. it's super expensive and not super effective..

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rated 3 of 5 top reviewer on 3/29/2012 10:05:00 AM More reviews by flairgirl8

Age: 36-43 Skin: Other, Other, Not Sure Hair: Other, Other, Other Eyes: Other

This is labeled as a medical grade peel combined with a microdermabrasion treatment. As it does not contain actual professional grade alumina scrubbing beads but rather softer scrubby particles, it is not even perform close to real microdermabrasion crystals. Contains 18.5% mixed acids to exfoliate. This is an effective scrub and chemical exfoliator but I would not consider it clinical grade as I am easily able to use this everyday without irritation. Note that the active ingredients are in a silicone base.

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rated 5 of 5 on 3/18/2012 8:50:00 AM More reviews by sarahalthea

Age: 30-35 Skin: Normal, Fair, Warm Hair: Blond, Straight, Fine Eyes: Blue

BEST SCRUB EVER! I have used a gazillion scrubs and this one is hands down the best. I was blown away with how soft and even textured it felt immediately after. And when I woke up this morning, I didn't feel any flakies or rough texture (especially on my nose). My skin felt soft and smooth.

I have combo skin, but tend to get a little red using ahas. This scrub has literally changed my life. A fine textured stub with chemical ahas that doesn't dry or irritate is tantamount to the holy grail. Incredible!

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rated 5 of 5 on 5/14/2011 8:21:00 PM More reviews by melodious

Age: 56 & Over Skin: Combination, Other, Not Sure Hair: Brown, Other, Other Eyes: Brown

when I use any products that cause my skin to peel, like retin a or treniton, i hate how my skin looks during that process that lasts about 3 or 4 days. This is the ONLY product I've found that completely removes all that peeling and flaking. So I can use it to diminish the down time. Other exfoliators just don't get rid of all those flakes like this one does. I veered away and tried many others, but always come back to this.

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rated 3 of 5 on 2/3/2011 9:15:00 PM More reviews by cosmic007

Age: 30-35 Skin: Oily, Fair, Not Sure Hair: Blond, Wavy, Medium Eyes: Blue

I received this product as a Beauty Insider bonus from Sephora, and found it to be effective. I have oily skin, and still found it to be a bit too harsh to use more than once per week. It's too pricey to justify the purchase, so this is a no-go for me in the future.

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rated 5 of 5 on 5/24/2010 5:28:00 PM More reviews by Ratwoman1

Age: 36-43 Skin: Sensitive, Fair, Not Sure Hair: Blond, Other, Other Eyes: Blue

This is my first review, and I'm glad I am finally moved to write! Everyone has different skin issues, and it's clear to me from the reviews that not every product works for everyone. So I'll describe myself a bit. I'm 42, stay out of the sun, have midlife acne (cystic, blackheads, whiteheads) that has been driving me crazy for several years, and the acne scars/skin discoloration to prove it. I am oily in the t-zone, normal elsewhere, and have large pores around my nose. I have a few fine lines, but staying out of the sun for the last 10 years has paid off. Still, I haven't felt comfortable going out without coverup because of my acne scars. . . until now. I'm almost there, after 1 week of using this product. I've never had a product show results so quickly. My scars are fading, my skin looks even brighter than it did before, and is even softer. And best of all, the whiteheads and blackheads disappeared immediately - after 1 application! I'll need to wait a few more weeks to see if monthly cyst comes up or not. I also use Atralin (a form of Retin-A), and Clinique even better spot corrector (Obagi was too strong for me) every night. I seem to be able to tolerate this stuff every other night, might go to every 3rd night and see if it still works as well. Like some others, i was not wowed by the application - no burning, nothing really "felt" like it was working except that the crystals are pretty harsh. Also, the directions say to rub this on dry skin, which turns out to be difficult, but i do it anyway. But afterwards - wow! i highly recommend trying this product out. I'll be telling all of my friends about it.

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rated 1 of 5 top reviewer on 5/3/2010 8:08:00 AM More reviews by hags101

Age: 30-35 Skin: Acne-prone, Fair, Not Sure Hair: Blond, Other, Other Eyes: Other

So this is the question I have after using this product.... Would you put glycolic acid and saldic acid on your face after exfoliating your skin with a physical microdermabrasion? Well the answer is H-E-double hockey sticks NO!!! So why does this product join all three into one? I used this and fried my skin. The microdermabrasion seemed nice for the first 40 seconds until the acids hit my skin. I use glycolic acids all the time (Mario Badescu rocks!), so my skin is used to the chemical exfoliation. When I use a microdermabrasion I take a break from glycolics for a week prior to the treatment -but I find that this stuff really stung and burned. I simply prefer to use a physical microdermabrasion seperatly from my acids. I found that this product worked the same as a physical microdermabrasion..... plus all the pain and blotchy red skin afterwords. PLUS IT COSTS $75!!!

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rated 5 of 5 on 11/12/2009 6:40:00 AM More reviews by devlynaskurt

Age: 25-29 Skin: Oily, Medium, Warm Hair: Black, Wavy, Fine Eyes: Brown

this scrub combines both a physical microdermabrasion plus chemical dermabrasion via glycolic, lactic, azelaic and beta hydroxy acids. my sweetie and i both use this once or twice a week, and we're only now hitting the bottom of the jar after 6 months. i use maybe a pea sized amount; he uses an edamame.


if your skin is in already fairly decent shape--meaning that you cleanse your skin religiously & use some other scrub --i don't think it's likely you'll see what makes physical chemistry a superior product until three weeks of using it once or twice a week. i also am not convinced someone in their early twenties or younger with good skin for their age needs to use a product like this yet.

after rubbing gently with this scrub for 30-60 seconds, we leave it on our skin for about thirty to sixty seconds more to allow the chemical elements to work a bit longer. when you use this, try not to get it in your eyes (hello, acid? but for us, it doesn't burn; it's just not comfortable).


my sweetie was not a consistent user of antiaging/microdermabrasion products until i convinced him it would make a difference. he has large pores, oily skin, and yet gets dry flakes that accumulate around his nostrils and between his brows. also, the quality of his skin was dull. physical chemistry totally changed that. it's radiant, looks younger, the pores are less visible. his skin glows.


i, however, used neutrogena products like the pore refining cleanser, religiously for years. i read several dermatologists recommended physical chemistry so i splurged on it. it took a several weeks, but as i said, the difference in quality made itself evident. i also have a problem with large pores and oily skin and while i was satisfied with what neutrogena did for me, i was blown away by the quality of my skin after using physical chemistry. my skin is even more refined, better toned, and it seems that some hyperpigmentation from not using sunscreen religiously in our youth (we live in hawaii) are less evident.


it's also not irritated our skin at all. the sweets can shave after using this product and does not require any additional skin soothers.

based on this, i'm willing to spend the $75 to buy this every five or six months. my sweetie and i are in our mid-late thirties and it's not uncommon that people think we are in our mid-twenties. we continue to use neutrogena cleansers, moisturizers and anti-aging creams but physical chemistry amped it up quite noticeably for us.


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