Obagi Nu-Derm® Clear vs. Blender; What’s the difference?

Hannah Wilson


If you’re familiar with the Obagi Medical range, you may have noticed two products with rather similar ingredients and skin benefits; Obagi Nu-Derm® Clear RX and Obagi Nu-Derm® Blender RX… how are they different? Do you need them? How do you use them both for best results? We’re answering all your questions, right here.


If you’re curious about the difference between the Obagi Nu-Derm® Blender RX and FX, and the difference between Obagi Nu-Derm® Clear RX and FX, we’ll also take a look at these two versions, find out which one you need, and even check out some before and after photos. Let’s dive in…

If you want to skip straight to chatting with a Skin Expert who can prescribe these two products for you, click here:

Here’s what we’ll cover in this article:

  • What is the Obagi Nu-Derm® range and why does Face Dr recommend it?
  • What is the Nu-Derm® Skin Transformation System?
  • What is Obagi Nu-Derm® Clear RX?
    • Who is it best for?
    • How do I use it?
  • What is Obagi Nu-Derm® Blender RX?
    • Who is it best for?
    • How do I use it?
  • How are they different?
  • What is hydroquinone and how can it help skin?
  • What do the reviews say?
  • What is the difference between FX and RX?
  • How much do Obagi Nu-Derm® Clear and Obagi Nu-Derm® Blender cost?
  • How do I buy both products here in the UK?
  • Summary: Which product should I try?


What is the Obagi Nu-Derm® range and why does Face Dr recommend it?



Obagi Medical Nu Derm


Face Dr is an authorised stockist of Obagi Medical products, and one of the ranges our Skin Experts regularly recommend is Obagi Nu-Derm®. This collection of products is a correction system for ageing and photodamaged skin, and is best for those with dark spots, a dull complexion, or hyperpigmentation and melasma. Its use of 4% hydroquinone (a prescription ingredient) makes it incredibly effective for those with discolouration of the skin, and with two options to choose from depending on if you have normal-to-dry or normal-to-oily skin, there’s a combination of products to suit most skin types.

There are 7 products included in the Nu-Derm® range, with a further 2 included in the Nu-Derm® Skin Transformation System (more on this below). They are:

  • Obagi Nu-Derm® Foaming Gel - This gel-based cleanser is best for normal to oily skin to remove makeup, impurities and excess oil
  • Obagi Nu-Derm® Gentle Cleanser - This mild facial cleanser for normal to dry, or sensitive skin, gently removes makeup, impurities, and oil without drying skin
  • Obagi Nu-Derm® Toner - This alcohol-free toner helps maintain the skin's natural pH levels while removing dead skin cells
  • Obagi Nu-Derm® Clear RX - This dark spot corrector helps correct hyperpigmentation and other forms of skin discolouration
  • Obagi Nu-Derm® Exfoderm® - This lightweight lotion exfoliates and removes old, dull skin while revealing new skin for a brighter, more radiant complexion. This lotion is most suitable for dry and sensitive skin types
  • Obagi Nu-Derm® Exfoderm® Forte - This lightweight lotion exfoliates and removes dead skin cells to promote cell turnover, resulting in smoother, brighter skin. This lotion is most suitable for a normal to oily complexion
  • Obagi Nu-Derm® Blender RX - This dark spot corrector helps correct hyperpigmentation and other forms of discolouration
  • Obagi Hydrate® Facial Moisturizer - This moisturiser offers up to 8 hours of skin hydration to prevent fine lines, tackle signs of ageing, and smooth skin
  • Obagi Sun Shield® Matte Broad Spectrum - This SPF 50 matte sunscreen includes UVA/UVB protection to fight against sun damage and early signs of ageing

Many of our clients have seen fantastic results using this range, so if you’re interested in trying it you can book a free video consultation with a Face Dr Skin Expert to discuss your skincare concerns and goals, and they will prescribe products from the range if appropriate.


What is the Nu-Derm® Skin Transformation System?



ZO Skin Health Exfoderm Forte


We’re here to shine a spotlight on Obagi Nu-Derm® Clear RX and Blender RX, but first we need to explain the Nu-Derm® RX Skin Transformation System. While we also stock individual Nu-Derm® products at Face Dr, the Transformation System is usually recommended. This collection of 7 products from the Nu-Derm® range is designed to work together to offer a complete skin overhaul with game-changing results.

One of the two above cleanser options will be recommended to you depending on whether your skin is Normal to Dry or Normal to Oily, as will the lotions Exfoderm® and Exfoderm® Forte depending on your skin needs. Your Skin Expert will advise on the best way to use the Transformation System for optimum results.


What is Obagi Nu-Derm® Clear RX?


Within the Transformation System is the Obagi Nu-Derm® Clear RX, a dark spot lightener and corrector cream. Clear RX is formulated with 4% hydroquinone to help correct hyperpigmentation (dark spots, melasma, and so on) and promote a more even skin tone.

Do you suffer from acne? Here’s Dr Julia explaining why this could be a great product for you:


Who is it best for?


Nu-Derm® Clear RX is ideal if you have dark spots or hyperpigmentation, rough skin, erythema (redness), or sallowness (a yellowish complexion). Your Skin Expert can advise whether or not this product is right for you, as those with a history of skin sensitivity or allergic reactions to any of the ingredients should avoid using it.


How do I use it?


You will likely be advised to apply Nu-Derm® Clear RX twice daily (AM and PM) but do listen to the instructions from your Skin Expert. After cleansing and toning, apply it evenly to the whole face and allow it to fully absorb into the skin before applying other products on top.


What is Obagi Nu-Derm® Blender RX?



Obagi Blender


Also in the Transformation System is Obagi Nu-Derm® Blender RX, which - upon first glance - seems similar to Clear RX, but it has a slightly different ingredient list that impacts the deeper layers of the skin. It too contains 4% hydroquinone to help correct hyperpigmentation and promote a healthier-looking, more even skin tone.

Who is it best for?

Again, your Nu-Derm® Blender RX is great for those with dark spots or hyperpigmentation, rough skin, erythema or a yellowish complexion, and will only be prescribed if your Skin Expert believes it is the best product for your skin issues. If you have skin sensitivity or allergies to some of its ingredients, you should avoid using this product.

How do I use it?

Unlike your Clear RX, you should use your Blender RX only once daily, in the evening. Again, take the advice of your Skin Expert when it comes to application techniques and frequency, but generally you should apply this product to your entire face.


How are they different?


Great question! You have probably noticed both the Obagi Nu-Derm® Clear RX and Blender RX bear a striking resemblance when it comes to their function and ingredients, but there is a difference. Clear RX helps reduce any superficial pigment on the surface of the skin, such as sun spots, while Blender RX goes much deeper into the skin to reach deeper pigment that can’t be accessed by Clear RX.

Your Skin Expert will most likely recommend both products for your routine if you have a complex range of pigmentation, as it’s their combined power that makes them special. With slightly different ingredients and differing pH levels that work synergistically as part of the larger Transformation System, these products are most effective when used in conjunction with each other.


What is hydroquinone and how can it help your skin?



When it comes to hyperpigmentation, sometimes a stronger ingredient is needed to help fade those dark spots, and that’s where hydroquinone comes in. This skin-lightening ingredient is included at a concentration of 4% in both the Obagi Nu-Derm® Clear RX and Blender RX, and it works to inhibit melanin production, fade hyperpigmentation and even out skin tone by actively destroying the cells that produce pigment. It’s somewhat of a superstar ingredient, but it is stronger than what you’ll find available in most shops, so products containing hydroquinone require a prescription from an authorised stockist like Face Dr.


What do the reviews say?


We like to ensure you get an unbiased review of the products we stock so you can make your own mind up with all the information at hand, however in the case of both Obagi Nu-Derm® Clear RX and Blender RX, they have 5-star reviews on our website and lots more on the Obagi website, so there aren’t many negatives to mention!

“No more pigmentation. I use this at night and it’s great. My skin is slightly red and peeling but this is normal with this product. It absorbs quickly and sinks into the skin. I use this with tretinoin every night. I have already noticed my pigmentation fading.”
- Riya P, Face Dr client using Nu-Derm® Blender RX

“Excellent product. I have been using this product for 10 weeks and noticed fantastic results after 4 weeks. It has lifted all my dark spots and discolouration on my face. My face looks lighter and brighter. I also use the blender mixed with the clear in the evening. Total transformation…”
Keay W, Face Dr client using Nu-Derm® Clear RX

You will find some great before and after photos of people using the Nu-Derm® Transformation System on the Obagi website - here.


How much do Obagi Nu-Derm® Clear and Obagi Nu-Derm® Blender cost?


Both these products are in the Obagi Medical range, meaning they are prescription-only and only available to purchase through authorised stockists. For this reason prices cannot be displayed online, but you can rest assured that all Face Dr prices follow Obagi RRP pricing.


What is the difference between FX and RX?


Another great question, as you have likely noticed the letters FX and RX on several Obagi products. Both the Obagi Nu-Derm® Clear and Blender we stock are RX, but what does that mean?

You can dive deeper on the differences between the two in our article - Obagi Medical vs. Obagi Clinical; FX & RX Demystified - but essentially the RX on Obagi products represents the Obagi Medical range which is mostly prescription only, while the FX represents the Obagi Clinical range which is available to purchase online without a prescription. RX products have stronger ingredients and are generally thought to be more effective, however you do need to speak to an authorised stockist who can discuss a prescription with you before you can purchase.

If you have found prescription-only Obagi Medical products being sold online without the need for a prescription or to talk to a professional, these products will be counterfeit or out-of-date, and could be missing the effective ingredients needed to see any real results.


How do I buy both products here in the UK?


A prescription is required for RX products, but it couldn’t be easier to purchase from the Obagi Medical range through Face Dr. Simply speak to one of our Skin Experts on a free video consultation to find out more about your skin issues, what products might work for you, and what your skincare goals are. If they think a particular product will be effective, they will offer a prescription for this and unlock it on our website so you can place an order.


Summary: Which product should I try?



Obagi Nu Derm products RX


If you are trying to choose between these two very similar products, our first suggestion would be to speak to one of our Skin Experts so they can find out more details about your skin issues and prescribe the best one for you.

However, as we mentioned above, the magic of these products happens when they are used in conjunction with one another - this is sure to unlock new levels of skin confidence, and we urge you to speak to your Skin Expert not only about recommended products, but about trying the Obagi Nu-Derm® RX Skin Transformation System as this is likely to offer the best skin benefits in the long run.

You can easily book your free video consultation via a secure video link for a no-strings chat about your available options. Once you have been recommended the best products for you, your Skin Expert can unlock these if needed so you can purchase on our website. When you place an order, these will be posted to you next working day, anywhere in the UK.

Ready to speak to a Skin Expert?

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