R+F REVERSE Lightening Skin Regimen: Worth the Hype?


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If you follow me on Insta stories, you know that my skin is… um, not in the best shape. Due to a nasty combination of hormonal imbalances (most of which were caused by my eating disorder) and years of not wearing sunscreen, I suffer from both rosacea and hyperpigmentation. Fortunately, I recently found an amazing OTC gel to help tone down the rosacea (learn more here), but targeting the discoloration has been one heck of a challenge until recently. I’d tried everything– facials, chemical peels, slathering on sunscreen, and only seen minor progress. Luckily, Rodan + Fields reached out a while back and sent me their REVERSE lightening regimen to try out. I’ve been using it diligently ever since.

I know I’m not alone in feeling insecure about my skin– thousands of women struggle with the same conditions I do. If you suffer from hyperpigmentation and are the fence about purchasing (because, yes, it’s pricey), keep reading for my honest Rodan and Fields REVERSE review!

What comes in the regimen?

Here’s what comes in the Rodan and Fields REVERSE lightening regimen–

  1. REVERSE Deep Exfoliating Wash– This is probably my favorite REVERSE skincare product– just because it makes my skin super soft. What it actually does, though, is deeply exfoliate to brighten skin and prepare it for the steps that follow. 
  2. REVERSE Skin Lightening Toner– This hydroquinone-based toner feels ultra refreshing and gradually fades persistent discoloration. My only issue is that it runs out super fast when used twice a day.
  3. REVERSE Skin Lightening Treatment– This lightening treatment is basically the MVP of the regimen. It features 2% Hydroquinone, which gradually lightens dark spots, hyperpigmentation, and age spots. It’s light, goes on smooth, and doesn’t make my face look or feel greasy.
  4. REVERSE Broad Spectrum SPF 50+ Sunscreen– Honestly, I’ll probably use this product til the day I die. More than just your basic SPF 50+ sunscreen, REVERSE Broad Spectrum SPF 50+ Sunscreen contains Vitamin E and Green Tea for free-radical scavenging and Licorice Extract and Mulberry for skin brightening. It does make my skin look a little greasy, though, but I learned the hard way that greasy skin is better than discolored skin. 

Additionally, to help keep my skin hydrated, I use this active hydration serum every day. I also apply this retinol cream 2-3 nights a week to promote cell turnover. Neither are part of the official REVERSE skincare regimen, but they are part of my every-day skincare routine. 

What exactly does it REVERSE?

The Rodan and Fields REVERSE regimen was created to tackle the damage brought on by years of cumulative sun exposure and reduce (ie. reverse) the appearance of dark spots, patches, and hyperpigmentation. These products help clear away dulling dead skin cells, supporting an even-looking tone and protecting skin from aging UV rays.

Full disclosure– my R+F contact was very specific about this regimen not treating melasma. I always thought melasma and hyperpigmenation were the same thing, but they’re not. This article goes into detail about the core differences.

How long until you started to see results?

I’ve been using the Rodan and Fields REVERSE regimen for a little over 3 months now, and I want to say I started to see legitimate results around week 4. Not only did my skin look brighter and more youthful, the dark marks on my forehead, cheeks, and chin were slightly less noticeable. The texture of my skin was significantly smoother, too.

After 3 months of use, the hyperpigmentation on my cheeks and chin is much less noticeable. The large patch of discoloration on my forehead, however, is still a work-in-progress. I talked to an esthetician about it, and she said that damage caused by UV exposure lurks under the skin’s surface in varying depths. In other words, dark spots are reversed in layers, meaning my forehead’s got a lot of tiers of sun damage to work through. Here’s hoping REVERSE eventually reaches those damaged layers!

Bottom Line: Is it worth the hype?

Plain and simple– Rodan and Fields really works but not without effort. You have to follow the regimen, and you have to stay out of the sun. Every single time I step out of the house without sunscreen (even if it’s for 5 or 10 minutes), I can see my sun spots flaring back up. Additionally, the regimen does take time– and as I said earlier, I use it in conjunction with a few other products, as well.

Lastly, Rodan and Fields is a cruelty-free brand (although not certified vegan), which I was pleasantly surprised by. They also offer a 60-day money-back guarantee on all their products. So, yes, in my opinion Rodan and Fields REVERSE regimen is worth the hype– and the price tag. Even though I was gifted these products, I would (and will) purchase them with my own money.

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I hope you enjoyed my Rodan and Fields REVERSE review, y’all! I’m planning on doing more of these quick (and non-sponsored) product reviews in the future, so let me know your thoughts! Also, as always, please let me know if you have any questions about any of the products mentioned in this post. I’m happy to help!

Photography by Catherine Rhodes

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