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    « Creeping Closer | Main | The Week In Review »

    My Acne vs. Olay Professional Pro-X Clear Line


    "Adult" and "acne" are not two words that belong in the same sentence.  Yet they do - and that sentence has been written across my face for twenty years.

    I have tried every over the counter product made.  I have gone to several dermatologists and spent the big bucks for prescriptions.  I have even mail ordered products that promised to work miracles.

    There are no miracle products for adult acne folks. 

    None at all.

    Plus, what I have found through the years is that the bulk of products are aimed at teens.  They have packaging aimed at teens and formulas designed for teen skin.  I use them, but I feel silly about it.


    I do not have teen skin.  As I age, my acne stays, but the rest of my face has grown more and more sensitive to dryness and some of the ingredients in these teen oriented products really irritate my skin.

    Enter Olay Professional Pro-X Clear Line an acne system specifically formulated for adult skin.

    They sent me a box of their product to try.  According to the packaging, full results take at least four weeks.  This is no lie.  At week one, two and three I was still skeptical.  By week four?

    I was a convert.

    Right off the bat, they had me with their packaging.

    Nothing about it says "teen".  In fact, you have to look really close to see that it's an acne product at all.  I could totally leave this out on my bathroom counter without announcing to snoopy guests that I fight acne.

    Packaging is great, but it's the product inside that matters of course.  In the fight over my face, which fared better?  Acne or Olay?

    The active ingredient in Olay Professional Pro-X Line is salicylic acid.  For my face, nothing has ever worked better.  I've been using it in other products for years.  If you're new to salicylic acid though, you should start slow.  It can cause redness and drying but that should clear up as your skin adjusts.

    Step One is Olay Professional Pro-X Clear Pore Clarifying Cleanser is not at all typical.  It feels like a lotion going on.  It does not suds up at all and when I rinsed it off, my face did not have any of the tightness or drying that it has gotten with other products.  I also appreciated that there is no odor to this product.  None, zip, zero.  Nothing flowery or fruity or medicinal.  It's great.

    Step Two is Olay Professional Pro-X Clear Skin Clearing Treatment - a salicylic acid skin clearing treatment that you rub in all over "problem areas".  For me, "problem areas" translates to "entire face and neck".  With other ointments though, I have found the product to be too harsh on my nose and chin.  I am constantly battling redness and dry skin in those areas.  With Olay, I had no issues at all.  With Step Two there is a very minimal medicinal smell.

    Step Three is a Olay Professional Pro-X Clear Complexion Renewing Lotion.


    This stuff works great.  I used it for the first three days on the patches of my face that were dry and irritated from other products and they cleared right up.  After that, because the first two steps were so kind to my skin, I really did not use the lotion much at all because I didn't need the extra moisture (my skin has plenty of oil all on its own).  I am sure I'll need it this winter though when it's drier.

    Having used salicylic acid for years, I really wasn't expecting the Olay Professional Pro-X Clear Line
    to have much of an impact on my skin but I really could tell it was working right away.  The first week I had several tiny breakouts as all the yucky stuff was being brought to the surface.  During week two my skin felt a little rough due to the turnover of skin cells.  My end of summer tan faded really quickly as the skin cells were renewed.

    By week three, the little breakouts were over and my face felt smoother but . . .

    This is an un-retouched photo of my face without any foundation on it at the end of week three.  (You have no idea how much I wanted to smooth out the wrinkles.  The things I do for y'all!)  You can see that I do have a pimple on my cheek. At this point I was disappointed.  Yes, my skin was better than before, but that was a big old zit.


    Later that day I picked at it until it popped it mysteriously popped itself.  It was messy and ugly and I was mad and frustrated.  However, I kept using the Olay Pro-X twice a day and took extra care to apply the lotion to the healing spot.  Here is my face one week later.

    You can't even tell I had a pimple and I have nothing new forming.  No blackheads, no pimples, nothing is clogged.  With a little make up to even out my skin coloring, you wouldn't guess that I battle acne.

    Overall, with Olay Professional Pro-X Clear Line, my skin had none of the redness and drying that my normal products caused.  I also think it was less oily and, it might be my imagination, but I do think my pores looked a little bit smaller.   While we’re on the subject of taking care of your skin, you might want to check out this post by Roxanna Sarmiento in the Life Well Lived section of She has some great tips for developing habits that will help your skin looks its best!

    My end opinion is this:  Olay Professional Pro-X Clear Line works better than any over the counter product I have tried in treating and preventing acne AND it does it without the redness and drying I experienced with the teen oriented stuff.  That moves it into first place for me.

    If you'd like to try Olay Professional Pro-X Clear, Blogher is letting me give away a $50 gift card to  I suppose you can use it for cold medicine, or vitamins or mascara too.  It's up to you.

    For a chance to win, just leave a comment telling me about the biggest change you've noticed in your skin since your teen years and/or how you've had to change your beauty routine since then.


    No duplicate comments allowed.

    You may receive (2) total entries by selecting from the following entry methods:

    a)      Enter between October 3rd – November 3rd

    b)      Leave a comment in response to the sweepstakes prompt on this post

    c)      Tweet about this promotion and leave the URL to that tweet in a comment on this post

    d)       Blog about this promotion and leave the URL to that post in a comment on this post

    e)      For those with no Twitter or blog, read the official rules to learn about an alternate form of entry.

    This giveaway is open to US Residents age 18 or older.

    Winners will be selected via random draw, and will be notified by e-mail.

    You have 72 hours to get back to me, otherwise a new winner will be selected.

    The Official Rules are available here.

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    Reader Comments (74)

    pores...why do they double in size every year? is it gravity? i have tried standing on my head but they are still huge! hate that the most...even though I too have ALWAYS had acne!!!

    October 3, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterSandy

    tweeted your give away as well @!/dawdawsmom

    everybody knows that the first commenter NEVER wins! =o(

    October 3, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterSandy

    How has my skin not changed since I was a teen. I never had to deal with break-outs when I was a teen. I would have, maybe, one zit a month (and that was around my time of the month) Once I had a kid, that all changed! I began breaking out all over my face and chest. Along with kid number two came break outs all over my back. I hate to think of what will happen with kid number three! Oh, and the blackheads, how is it that I get more and more everyday?

    October 3, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterJessy

    I had horrible, horrible acne as a teenager. So bad I spent 6 months on Accutane, a drug so strong that you are required to have monthly pregnancy and liver function test when you are on it (didn't matter if you were active in that way or not). Accutane was seriously a miracle drug. They put my brother on it before he ever got bad (thus saving his self esteem and proving that I was simply a guinea pig for the favorite child).

    As I have gotten older the miracle of accutane still holds true, but I do occasionally get a pretty bad mess of blackheads. And my pores (aka acne damage) have become more noticeable with age too. Lets face it, I have to use moisturizer now too. Actually as I continue to deny my age, my skin is what makes me feel oldest of all. As I get older I HAVE to take care of it.

    October 3, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterMiriam

    Mindee, I know you're going to laugh at me, all my friends laughed at me, but I totally found a wrinkle the other day.

    I KNOW, right?

    I'm officially old.

    Also? I actually scrutinized your photo and don't know where you think there are wrinkles! I mean, your skin is somewhat scrunched together between your eyes, but that's clearly the facial expression you're making!

    October 3, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterMegan (Best of Fates)

    I have to say, I dont know if ANY over the counter product could help my acne. However, if I could find one I'd be hooked for life since pills, etc do very little. Dang adult acne.

    Wait, wait, wait. You're skin is supposed to change as you get older and exit the teen years? Can someone please tell my skin this because I don't think it got the message. Honestly, the biggest difference are the lines on my forehead. I still have acne (both zits and black heads) like I did in high school.

    October 3, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterPJ

    Although I have less breakouts now than I did as a teen, the products that I used to clear them I can no longer use. When I do, my face gets so dry that, honest to God, if I smile or make any facial expression it might crack!

    October 3, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterAmanda

    I don't even want to think about my skin. It's awful. I still breakout. And now I have wrinkles, scars, and discolored spots. I have better features, let's focus on those.

    October 3, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterKaty @ MonsterProof

    Love the pictures!!! You skin is naturally beautiful! I struggle with acne ever since I had my boys, before that I hadn't had a zit in 10 years, ugh!!

    October 3, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterJenna @ Newlyweds

    i have huge under eye circles now

    October 3, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterKarina

    I went from oily teenage skin to dry dry dry (makeup flakes off) skin. Now that I'm pregnant again, it's combination! Just when I find something that works, either the product or my skin changes. Clinique is working well enough for now.

    October 3, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterHeatherD

    Oh, you are gorgeous, don't even play. And? I can't tell you how loudly I squeed at getting an e-mail reply to comment from you!

    October 3, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterMegan (Best of Fates)

    The biggest change has been the fact that I now have dark under-eye circles. I use concealer to minimize it.

    October 3, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterMami2jcn

    My skin has gone from OILY to DRY!!! I have a Lupus Butterfly rash, I have eczema on my face and I have WHISKERS that drive me nuts. I would gladly go back to the occasional zit. Oh yes, I still have blackheads in my nose something fierce so while that is not a change my nose flakes from dry skin while having blackheads in the pores. Yep, I have had quite a change in my skin since my teens and well, it is just one of those things.

    Ciao Bella,


    PS ~ your skin looks great!

    October 3, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterArdee-ann


    ardee_sagemoon Ardee-ann Eichelmann…

    October 3, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterArdee-ann

    I actually have more breakouts than I did as a teen. Although, I also struggle with patchy dry areas. It is really frustrating!

    October 3, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterValerie B

    In high school I had pretty good skin...every now and then I got a few zits on my forehead, but I always thought it was because of my bangs, and the can of hairspray that I used each morning (and yes, I mean I used the whole can on my hair each was the late eighties and early nineties. That was some big hair.). My skin since turning into a grown-up (which, I guess has technically happened) has been weird. I'll have long periods of time when it's just fine and then all of sudden it's like double puberty. Just recently I started using Oil of Olay's Regeneration stuff (scrub and lotion, plus a different kind of Olay night creme, which I LOVE). I like it, and I have used Olay products for a long time. I have tried others (Aveeno, Neutragena) but I always come back to Olay. Anyway, thanks for the info on the product. I have also become quite fond of salicylic acid. It saved the day two days before my wedding!! What a time to get Mount Zitmore. :P

    October 4, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterChristina

    I had beautiful skin as a teen....smooth, pimple-free, olive-complected. Once I hit college, the break-outs started. Now that I'm a full-time employee and a mother, my olive-comlexion has faded to pasty white. And I see a hint of rosacea in my future. Man, getting old is fun!

    October 4, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterKara

    Definitely an adult-acne sufferer... worse than when I was 16. :P Could really use this stuff!

    October 4, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterMargaret

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