Neutrogena is one of those extreme brands that I have ever come across. One side there are people who keep praising them for being their skin saviour and on the other side there are those who curse them for ruining their skin. In my skincare journey and experience of using various Neutrogena Products during my early acne fighting period, I vouch for this brand. Most of their products are non-comedogenic, means they are formulated without any acne trigging ingredients and made to work on treating acne. By now, you might have guessed that I have a good opinion about the brand as a whole. But still let me take you through a quick review of each product.
This post is published as a part of the Brand Focus Series wherein I review a set of products from a particular brand. Don’t forget to check out reviews from other great and not so great brands.
Let’s get to the Neutrogena Products Review now,
Listing Neutrogena Products featured in this post.
- Neutrogena Deep Clean Facial Cleanser
- Neutrogena Deep Clean Blackhead Eliminating Scrub
- Neutrogena Oil Free Moisturizer
- Neutrogena Ultra Sheer Dry Touch Sunscreen
- Neutrogena Hydro Boost Water Gel
- Neutrogena Norwegian Lip Moisturizer
- Neutrogena Rainbath Refreshing Shower and Bath Gel
The Neutrogena Deep Clean Facial Cleanser is a golden brown colored gel based face wash. It has a slightly runny consistency and requires only a little of the product for each wash. The fragrance is mild and wanes away post cleansing. This is a type of face wash that does not lather much, although it effectively removes impurities from the skin without causing excessive dryness. This will suit most skin types and gives a refreshed feel each time. The presence of Salicylic Acid, an acne fighting Ingredient, has helped to keep my frequent outbreaks at bay to a great extent. But if you are looking for a facial cleanser exclusively to treat your acne, then you should be trying the Neutrogena Oil Free Acne Cleanser which is more or less similar in terms of formula, color, texture & consistency. But performance wise, the acne version is a bit more drying on the skin and works on treating acne faster than this one. The brand has claimed the deep clean face wash to improve complexion which I find it to be a marketing gimmick. I agree it gives an instant brightening effect (like most face washes), which lasts for a couple of hours after cleansing. But it most definitely doesn’t improve complexion. It does what a cleanser is supposed to do, that is, cleaning the skin off dirt. As a beginner, I was happy about using this cleanser and I would recommend trying this face wash once, especially those with normal to oily skin type.
Neutrogena Deep Clean Blackhead Eliminating Scrub is a very mild scrub which is meant to work on whiteheads & blackheads. The scrub is not at all harsh on the skin. That’s why I think it says it’s a daily scrub, although I don’t favour daily scrubbing. I use a physical scrub only twice a week. This scrub is off white with tiny little orange & white colored granules. These particles are very soft unlike Apricot and Walnut Granules in most scrubs, hence feels gentle on the skin. It has a citrusy, sweet refreshing fragrance which I like. The scrub is mildly foaming hence gives a nice clean up effect. It is able to deeply cleanse my pores and reduce whiteheads and blackheads by 50%. When scrubbed after steaming the face, it gives even more better results of getting rid of blackheads. The scrub has a mild slipperiness while rinsing hence it is even hydrating on the skin and not at all drying or stretchy on the skin. My skin feels softer, smoother and cleaner every time I use this scrub. It is one of the gentlest scrub you can ever try. This will suit all skin types and it works on eliminating blackheads with regular use. But it does not prevent re-appearance as claimed.
3. Neutrogena Oil Free Moisturizer for Combination Skin (Non-SPF Version)
This is one of the most raved Neutrogena Products. I normally have oily skin which turns combination during the winters, so I gave this a try at that time. It’s a lightweight moisturizer with a fast absorbing gel cream texture. It instantly hydrates the skin and moisturizes the dry patches. Once applied, it leaves the skin a bit dewy, hence oily skin types shouldn’t be using this, especially during the summers as this might be heavy on the skin. This moisturizer keeps the skin nourished with moisture for long, so re-application isn’t really necessary. The packaging is also user friendly with a lock mechanism dispenser and the fragrance, as claimed to be fragrance free, has a hardly noticeable faint scent. This version doesn’t come with an SPF but has never broken me out. The SPF version is known to cause breakouts as that formula is not non-comedogenic. I have seen some people detesting this moisturizer, but I believe that it’s because it’s not meant for their skin type. I loved it and I would strictly recommend it only for combination skin types, for those with dry cheeks and oily T zones.
This again is very popular among various Neutrogena Products. This and the Lotus Matte UV Gel Sunscreen are two most common sunscreens recommended by dermatologists in India for acne prone skin. This works amazingly well in protecting the skin from burning and tanning. I have used this during various occasions where I found this really effective. Had I not used this, I would have severely tanned. The product scores high as a sunscreen with SPF 50 PA+++ and Broad Spectrum Coverage(both UVA and UVB). It also protected my skin even while I sweat a lot or were exposed to water. So I surely agree to its sweat proof and water proof claim. The major thing I did not like about this sunscreen – its not a very lightweight sunscreen. It is a milky white semi-thick cream. For the amount that I use, I usually need a good massage. It also shows a white cast initially (which later settles down) and the finish is not Dry Touch. It is slightly dewy and so I usually top up with a layer of loose or compact powder to mattify my skin. This sunscreen hasn’t broken me out and it has got a pleasant scent which is mild and non-bothering.
On a final note, although this sunscreen doesn’t have the best formula, this is the best when it comes to sun protection. I would recommend this for normal, combination and moderately dry skin. Oily skin types can use this with compact powder.
5. Neutrogena Hydro Boost Water Gel
This is from my aunt’s vanity who has dry mature skin. She’s been using this for a while now and is happy with this product. Earlier she was a user of The Body Shop Vitamin E Moisture Cream and had switched to this after that got over. She feels the Neutrogena Hydro Boost Water Gel is much lighter and more suitable for the humid days. This keeps her dry skin adequately moisturized, soft and supple throughout the night. For colder days, she still prefers the TBS one as that is more rich and moisturizing for her dry skin. I had the chance to try it when I overstayed at her place. Myself having oily skin, I was surprised. The product says it quenches dry skin, so I had this thought that this is a dry skin product. But this was not at all greasy and quite lightweight on my oily skin. I was able to comfortably use it both during the day and night time and also under makeup. Just like it’s name, this has a water gel like texture which resembles the Laneige Water Sleeping Pack. It vanishes instantly into the skin leaving it almost matte and soft to touch. The water gel doesn’t have an SPF, so a separate sunscreen is necessary for day time use. The product has a fresh fragrance which me and my aunt likes but my cousin finds it to be strongly scented. Apart from the fragrance factor, tub packaging is a bit unhygienic to use and bulky for travel purposes. Also, this moisturizer falls in the expensive category. These are some of the cons of this product.
Other than the above, I don’t have a reason why you shouldn’t be getting this. It is a wonderful lightweight moisturizer that will suit most skin types. This is great for the humid weather which keeps skin hydrated for long hours. You should give it a try if lightweight hydrating moisturizers are your go to.
6. Neutrogena Refreshing Rainbath Shower and Bath Gel
This is truly a refreshing bath gel. This smells soo good and mesmerising. Just as stated, its fragrance smell like a blend of herbs, spices and fruits. It is not all at overwhelming, rather its comforting and calming. I just so love this scent. If you like this scent, I’m sure you are going to restock this product multiple times. The bath gel is an amber coloured honey like gel. The consistency is medium and one or two pumps is enough as it foams up really well. Sometimes I don’t even require a loofah with this bath gel. It lathers that well with even a little amount. Of course this bath gel contains SLS. I do have the need to rinse thoroughly with quite a lot of water. Otherwise I sense some mild slippery residue. Post shower, I don’t have any uncomfortable feel as the shower gel doesn’t leave my skin dry, itchy or stretchy. It is mildly hydrating and I don’t have to run for my body lotion immediately. This would make a great body wash for all seasons. One thing I hate about this product is its packaging. The bottle is not at all travel friendly due to its huge size. The pump dispenser gets elongated after opening and becomes even more longer due to this. The dispenser doesn’t even have a lock mechanism added to this. So traveling with this is a definite No. But on the good side, whenever I use this shower gel, this gives a luxurious and calming bathing session. I would recommend giving this a try for all those who love nicely scented shower gels. But if you are into the SLS Free Zone and hate poor product build, then you may not like this.
7. Neutrogena Norwegian Lip Moisturizer SPF 15
This is from their Norwegian Range, which is catered towards people of the Cold Weather. In simple terms, dry skin people. So I thought this Lip balm would be extremely moisturizing and heal my cracked lips. Also not at all Lip balms come with an SPF. But this one has an SPF of 15 which I think is great. This is a clear lip balm with no color, fragrance or taste. Lip balm formulas usually fall in two categories – one is those waxy types and the other one which has an oily feel. This one falls into the former category. The Lip balm is most certainly Wax based but it is not very heavy and waxy on the lips. It sits comfortably on my lips and I could also easily wear my lipsticks above it. The lip balm instantly nourishes my lips and keeps them soft and supple for around 3 or 4 hours. After that I have to re-apply like every other lip balm. This Lip balm alone doesn’t help much with cracked lips.
The no taste, no fragrance, SPF, travel friendly packaging, lightweight feel of the lip balm, all these are surely great things one would look for. But performance wise, I did not find the lip balm very moisturizing for my dry lips. It does not heal chapped lips. Overall, it serves its purpose, but only temporarily.
Final Thoughts on Neutrogena Products
Most Neutrogena Products have worked for me, the best among them is the Sunscreen, Shower Gel and the Scrub. Summarising,
Why I love them?
- I haven’t had any issue with their fragrance or texture.
- Packaging is pretty good.
- Most of their formulas are non-comedogenic.
- They never irritated my skin, would suit most skin types.
- The products are reasonable priced.
What I dislike about them?
- They are so full of chemicals, which includes the nasty SLS, parabens, artificial fragrance, color and everything that a natural skincare user detests.
- The brand has a vast range of products. But only limited products are available in India, say about 10 to 15. and you don’t get to try their new launches here.
So that is all I have to say about the Neutrogena Products. I hope this post was helpful. Let us know your favourite products and experience with them in the comments section below.