Obagi Nu-Derm Clear: The Most Effective Lightener, But What About Side Effects?

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Obagi Nu-Derm ClearAs our focus for this week is on skin lightening, today we’ll be reviewing what is said to be the most powerful skin lightening product on the market today – Obagi Nu-Derm Clear – however there may be a price to pay for using this cream and we’re not just referring to your dollar, dollar bills!

As far as an effective skin lightening treatment goes, Obagi Nu-Derm Clear certainly has a lot of reviews to back that claim up, but overall we want to find out how it sizes up to our top skin lightening product, especially in regards to its level of safety.

Let’s dig a little deeper shall we?

Here’s What We Found Out

We mentioned this briefly in our review on Xtreme Brite, but just to go over it once again quickly, there are two types of skin lighteners available today:

  1. Those that bleach your skin.
  2. Those that prevent the production of melanin, which leads to reduced pigmentation.

Obagi Nu-Derm Clear sits pretty much at the top of the first category as far as its ability to reduce most forms of hyperpigmentation. It’s also common to see faster results when using a cream that contains bleaching agents as opposed to those in the second category.

There is however one considerably large issue related to bleachers…

They can be DANGEROUS!

Hydroquinone Side EffectsIn 2006, the FDA(US Food & Drug Administration) revoked the over the counter license for the primary ingredient used in Nu-Derm Clear – hydroquinone. 

It is now believed that when used frequently and in high dosages, this chemical could in fact be a harmful carcinogen that may result in cancer in the long term.

There is debate as to what might be considered a safe level of potency of hydroquinone to use in skin lighteners, with many regarding that less then 5% may be a safe amount.

Still the general consensus is that using a natural alternative might in fact be the better option.

As far as results go, nothing compares in terms of the sheer speed and effectiveness of bleaching agents like hydroquinone.

Why It’s HOT!

We pretty much covered this already, but the main reason why Obagi Nu-Derm Clear stands out above its competition is due to its level of effectiveness.

We literally couldn’t find anyone who said that it didn’t work for them, clearly indicating that this product may in fact be the most powerful on the market today.

But that certainly comes at a price…

Why It’s NOT!

As more and more studies come out about the potential link between bleaching agents and cancer, it kinda makes us worry about what the effects might there be in regards to using a product like this over an extended period of time.

The other problem is that there is the possibility this product may eventually go off the market altogether, as we’re noticing online stores like SkinRX removing it from their shelves, while at the same time starting to suggest other safer alternatives.

For the majority of skin lightening solutions that do use ingredients like hydroquinone a prescription is now needed, making it a lot harder to obtain for those suffering from hyperpigmentation problems.

Skin Score

Right now, the overwhelming majority of skin lighteners being sold today still contain bleaching agents, although there is a movement to pull away from products like Obagi Nu-Derm Clear and move towards safer, more natural alternatives like Meladerm.

Yes we do agree that the results you will see from Obagi Nu-Derm Clear will be noticeable, but with that said there really is no substitute for your own health.

Due to the nature of this product, we chose to place this cream at #3 on our Skin Lightening Leaderboard.

Overall Score: 89%

Curious to Know Why Most Readers Prefer Meladerm? Click Here To Find Out!

3 comments… add one

  • Jessica Battelstein June 2, 2013 2:11 pm

    I am currently using Obagi and yes it does work for a while. It worked great for the first year, but then the pigmentation returned. What I am finding is:
    obagi does prevent the production of melanin, which leads to reduced pigmentation, but over time your adrenals produce even more tyrosine, which is responsible for increased melanin production. Your body seems to think you are not getting enough and works harder make more tyrosine with makes more melanin which makes darker skin. I have found that when drink/eat anything that has even a trace of caffine (affects tyrosine), but skin gets darker by the next day. I am so allergic to caffine, even a trace found in Kombucha, which is really good for you. I am also learning that your adrenal health in important, get enough sleep so that your adrenals are balanced. Remove sugar and bad things from your diet. I have been taking grapefruit seed extract to help with acid balance and to prevent fungal overgrowth (candida), and it is helping a lot.

    My biggest concern is that obagi contains parabens and so harmful for our bodies. When i stop using the obagi the spots get really dark. I want to stop using obagi altogether, but the spots get dark. I’m stuck using it, unless i stop and know it will get dark for a while and hopefully my body will stop trying to produce more tyrosine which makes more melanin. I can use the items listed in this blog and pray it will work….

  • Hey Jessica,

    Thanks for that! Wow, I didn’t know caffeine could affect skin lightening…new thing I learned today!

    If you do want to stop using Obagi then check out our DIY skin lightening category. It has a bunch of great natural remedies that could possibly help you out


    Also, we’re launching a free 4 week program to lighten your skin naturally. It should be available in the next week or so..maybe that would interest you?

    Hope that helps and thanks for the feedback :-)

  • Jessica is absolutely right. The first 8 months I was amazed…. I have melasma (that means skin gets darker in certain parts) My skin was improving so much. But now the same side of my face that I had issues with seems to look like it did.
    P.S. I had no idea that Obaji is that dangerous.


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