CLEARSTEM Skincare Review
In Partnership with CLEARSTEM.
Table of Contents
In all my years using skincare, I’ve come to learn many things. Perhaps the most frustrating is this: Treatments used to address one issue can actually end up causing other ones. Acne products age your skin, anti-aging products break you out. It’s a classic catch-22 but one I’m losing my patience with.
That’s why CLEARSTEM was created, a line that’s both anti-acne and anti-aging. And judging from what I can see, it’s been highly successful in its mission.
CLEARSTEM has been featured in Forbes, Women’s Health, and Women’s Wear Daily; it has amassed a strong following of 36K on Instagram; and it has released cool collaborations with celebrity skincare influencers such as Jess Clarke.
Want to banish your blemishes while simultaneously ridding yourself of wrinkles and fighting off fine lines? In this CLEARSTEM review, I’ll take an in-depth look at the brand and its bestselling products, along with customer feedback, promotions, and more to help you decide if their products are really worth the buy.
Overview of CLEARSTEM
Though this brand’s formulas are complex, their story is pretty simple. CLEARSTEM was founded in 2017 by acne guru Danielle Gronich, owner of the San Diego Acne Clinic, and holistic nutritionist Kayleigh Christina, who had been one of Danielle’s patients at the clinic. Employing her background in biology, Danielle surveyed the anti-acne market and noted how the highly abrasive, even toxic solutions used by many companies caused premature aging.
Combining their expertise, the two women created an organic, non-toxic serum that functioned as both an anti-acne and an anti-aging treatment. Following the success of their flagship product, Danielle and Kayleigh began developing an entire product line that now includes moisturizers, cleansers, eye creams, sunscreens, and even home microdermabrasion tools.
So that’s the basics of the brand—now let’s really get down to business with this CLEARSTEM skincare review, beginning with some of the most notable highlights of the company and its products.
- Non-toxic, vegan, gluten-free, and cruelty-free skincare products
- Anti-acne & anti-aging
- Ships internationally
- Online quiz to help you determine which products are best for your skin issues
- 4-week “Ditch Your Acne” course dives deep into hormones, nutrition, digestion, gut health and more to help you get to the root cause of your acne and how to treat exactly what’s causing it
- Save 15% off products when you subscribe for auto-delivery every 30, 45, or 60 days
- Free shipping for US orders of $75 and up
Now that I’ve given you the bird’s-eye view, it’s time for me to dig a little deeper into this CLEARSTEM review by taking a close look at some of the brand’s bestselling cleansers, serums, moisturizers, and kits. Let’s unscrew the cap and dive in.
CLEARSTEM Cleansers Review
Are you one of those people who can just splash cold water on your face in the morning and head out to face the day? First off, I’m incredibly jealous. Second, for the rest of us who actually have to put some work in to get our faces to get them looking fresh, just below in this CLEARSTEM skincare review, I’ll spotlight some of the brand’s top-selling cleanser products to help you out.
CLEARSTEM GENTLECLEAN Vitamin Infused Calming Wash Review
Regular cleansers can often strip away skin’s nutrients and leave it feeling raw and, even worse, more likely to break out if you’re prone to acne. It’s funny (not really) that the very thing that’s supposed to help, doesn’t. I guess that’s typical conglomerates for you.
The GENTLECLEAN Vitamin Infused Calming Wash softly but thoroughly purges your pores of dirt, makeup, and other impurities without taking away your skin’s natural protective barrier. I’m seeing this quite a bit in quality skincare these days, but I’m head over heels for CLEARSTEM’s formula.
This cleaner is packed full of vitamin C and fruit extracts that work to alleviate dryness and nourish and soothe your skin. Great for acne-prone users but suitable for all types of skin, the GENTLECLEAN cleanser is $38, or $32 for subscribers.
CLEARSTEM VITAMINSCRUB Antioxidant-Infused Scrub Cleanser Review
Cleansers are great, but for that real deep clean, I’ve learned some texture and abrasion is necessary to get the grime, dirt, and oil out of congested pores. Plus, I love the feeling of my skin after a good scrub.
The VITAMINSCRUB Antioxidant-Infused Scrub Cleanser uses bamboo extract to scour out deep-seated impurities and burnish your skin.
Formulated with organic aloe vera for soothing and nourishing green tea, grapefruit, mango and tangerine extracts, this is a great option for acne-prone users to get the clean they need while keeping breakouts at bay. You can get the VITAMINSCRUB Antioxidant-Infused Scrub Cleanser for $38 if you’re a subscriber, or $45 as a one-time purchase.
CLEARSTEM Serums Review
This brand made its name with its combination anti-acne/anti-aging serum, and that same formula was the basis for all the other products it developed in this category. For this CLEARSTEM review, I pulled out a couple for your consideration below.
CLEARSTEM CLEARITY – AHA Mandelic Acid Serum + Vitamin C Review
Honestly, I just want my skin to be fine. I’m tired of worrying about it—which, unsurprisingly, can make things even worse.
If you have to constantly check for blackheads or need to carry blotting papers with you everywhere you go, the CLEARITY – AHA Mandelic Acid Serum + Vitamin C could be the answer you’ve been looking for. Mandelic acid is a supercharged but gentle exfoliator that speeds up cell turnover, letting you shed dead skin and drain that nasty oil buildup.
Additionally, this acid can help reduce blemishes like sun damage, discoloration, and age spots, while the bonus of vitamin C boosts collagen production and leaves your skin hydrated, firm, and more youthful looking. The CLEARITY – AHA Mandelic Acid Serum + Vitamin C is $65, but you can knock 15% off that price when you subscribe.
CLEARSTEM CELLRENEW Collagen Infusion Serum Review
Those who have suffered from serious acne know how difficult it is to deal with multiple blemishes at once—sometimes, it can seem as if a truly smooth complexion is just not in the cards for you. That’s where the CELLRENEW Collagen Infusion Serum comes in.
I read that this is CLEARSTEM’s ultimate solution for stopping inflammation in its tracks and giving your skin the nourishment it needs to bottle up those breakouts. Once you’ve sloughed off those dead skin cells and oil with the CLEARITY serum, bring in the CELLRENEW for phase two so that you can control oil buildup and give your skin a healthy, hydrating, and plumping boost.
The CELLRENEW Collagen Infusion Serum retails for $62, or $53 for subscribers.
CLEARSTEM Kits Review
As I noted above about the tag-team duo of CLEARITY and CELLRENEW, I came to understand that the majority of CLEARSTEM products work best when they work together. The kits that the brand has put together take the guesswork out of choosing your own regimen, giving you a complete anti-acne/anti-aging skincare regimen readymade. Let’s take a look.
CLEARSTEM Power Trio Kit Review
Unfortunately, for many people acne isn’t something that disappears after that first awkward age—and speaking of age, there’s nothing quite so dispiriting as having to worry about wrinkles as well as breakouts, am I right? The CLEARSTEM Power Trio Kit takes the fight to both of those enemies with a three-pronged attack.
This kit gives you the VITAMINSCRUB cleanser to root out deep-seated impurities, and the CLEARITY serum to exfoliate and flush out excess oil. For the finale, the nighttime HYDRAGLOW Moisturizer uses an organic form of retinol to youthify your skin while you sleep.
Buying these products separately would set you back $166, but you can get all three in the CLEARSTEM Power Trio Kit for $149. And if you’re up for taking the subscription leap, I suggest signing up to get another 15% off that already discounted price and pay just $127.
CLEARSTEM Men’s Starter Kit Review
The last few years I’ve seen men’s skincare becoming a far more common and socially acceptable practice, but let’s face it: a lot of guys still need a lot of help to figure out what they need to take care of themselves properly. So fellas, say hello to the Men’s Starter Kit.
Just like the Power Trio above, this kit starts you out with the deep-cleaning VITAMINSCRUB. Then the CELLRENEW serum gets in on the act to calm inflammation and smooth out your complexion. Finally, the HYDRAGLOW Moisturizer revitalizes your skin overnight and has you waking up looking like a princess (er, prince).
The Men’s Starter Kit gives you a $163 value for $148. Down to subscribe? Then make that $126, my friend.
Who Is CLEARSTEM For?
It’s common to think that acne is just an issue faced by squeaky-voiced teens, but thousands of people know the pain of struggling with blemishes and breakouts as they age into their twenties, thirties, forties and beyond. Although it is certainly usable by teenagers, CLEARSTEM is targeted at adults who are dealing with acne issues as well as combating signs of aging.
With its clean, non-toxic formulas filled with natural ingredients, CLEARSTEM provides effective acne-fighting treatments that don’t strip skin of its nutrients and moisture and leave it more susceptible to wrinkles and fine lines. I think the clinical packaging of the products indicates that they are meant for unisex use, and also give them an aura of scientific veracity.
Comparison: CLEARSTEM vs. Reflekt
Since skincare is one of the most oversaturated markets out there, I feel pretty duty-bound to measure my spotlighted brand against another of its many, many competitors. For this part of my CLEARSTEM skincare review, I’ve selected Reflekt, a skincare line that has a somewhat similar, stripped-down aesthetic as CLEARSTEM, as well as a comparably limited product line.
As I’m stressing similarities at the moment, let’s take a look at a few more ways these brands resemble each other:
- All products from both brands are made from clean, non-toxic, vegan and cruelty-free formulas
- The flagship products from both brands were designed to do double duty: CLEARSTEM’s CELLRENEW serum is an anti-acne and anti-aging treatment, while Reflekt’s Reflekt 1 provides both exfoliation and hydration
- Both brands have similar price points, ranging between $40–$65 per product
Naturally, though, there are some significant ways that CLEARSTEM and Reflekt differ from each other as well. For instance:
- Reflekt products are positioned as general skincare, whereas CLEARSTEM is specifically targeted at people suffering from acne and aging (although those who don’t have these issues can of course use the products as well)
- Reflekt accentuates its “clean, cruelty-free, vegan, etc.” bona fides by spotlighting its sustainable packaging and support for social justice causes, specifically its partnership with the WhyHunger charity
- CLEARSTEM’s return policy is “no-questions asked” just send it back
While both brands stress the science behind their products as well as their clean formulas, it’s the anti-acne focus of CLEARSTEM that truly distinguishes it from Reflekt.
CLEARSTEM Reviews: What Do Customers Think?
So far in this CLEARSTEM skincare review, I’ve given you a rundown on the brand and its products, but the question remains: do these things really work? The only way I can know for sure is to take a look at what the folks who actually shelled out for them have to say.
I’ll start with the brand website, where customer ratings of these products are high right across the board. Have a gander at the below:
- CELLRENEW Collagen Infusion Serum—4.9/5 stars based on 280 reviews
- HYDRAGLOW Stem Cell Moisturizer—4.7/5 stars based on 309 reviews
- BOUNCEBACK Repair Serum—4.9/5 stars based on 189 reviews
- CLEARSTEM Clear Skin Kit—4.8/5 stars based on 248 reviews
The kits in particular attracted a lot of praise from customers who were grateful to have everything they needed in one convenient package. One buyer of the CLEARSTEM Clear Kit even pointed out that while these products have an explicitly medical dimension to them, they also provide some of the benefits associated with luxury skincare:
“I have been using this line up for nearly two weeks now, and I can already tell a difference—the surface of my skin is so much more even and my blackheads are significantly less. It also smells so good—I was not expecting such a sweet smell since it doesn’t have any fragrance ingredients, but the oils they included are incredible!”
Some customers shared deeply felt stories about how CLEARSTEM products gave them increased confidence as they faced struggles in their lives, some of them extremely serious. One user of the VITAMINSCRUB cleanser (which scored a full 5/5 stars from 110 reviews) told their tale. It’s a bit long but I think it’s an incredibly valuable read:
“Growing up, despite all of my crazy health/thyroid/autoimmune disease struggles, the ONE thing I had going for me was perfect skin, and it gave me some much needed confidence in presenting myself physically. In the past year, after my thyroid autoimmune disease flaring at its all time worst & then, thyroid CANCER… my hormones went ballistic & ruined my skin.
“NOTHING helped it at all until I found Clearstem. My skin is healing and thriving after using Vitaminscrub, Clearity & CellRenew religiously. On top of its effectiveness, the fact that everything is non-toxic, with no hormone disruptors and of the highest quality ingredients makes it the BEST brand I could use during this upward health struggle.”
Beyond the products themselves, CLEARSTEM’s efforts to educate people about the most effective methods to deal with their acne issues has also resonated with customers. On the brand’s Facebook page, one commenter stated that:
“Clearstem Skincare is absolutely life changing! … I took the ‘Ditch Your Acne Course,’ which I recommend for everyone, and it taught me about all different types of pore clogging ingredients, gut health, and nutrition. The course and the products together are all the tools you will ever need to combat acne forever!”
To provide a bit more perspective, let’s leave the brand’s online turf and see what buyers at third-party websites have to say. As it turns out, they’re saying pretty much the same things. At Amazon, the CELLRENEW serum scores 4.3/5 stars from 239 global ratings, with buyers saying that the effectiveness of these products make them worth the price point.
“I’ve struggled with acne for over a decade. I’ve spent thousands of dollars going to the dermatologist and buying all these prescribed creams, none of them ever worked. I’m already on day 3 using this product and I have yet to have a breakout. My old acne scars seem to be fading away. This product seems too good to be true… it’s pricey but this stuff really works.”
While in this CLEARSTEM review I will note that some customers reported that the products didn’t work for them, it was encouraging to see that the brand responds to these comments at clearstemskincare.com with advice, or even invitations for a one-on-one consultation with the customer in order to help identify their breakout triggers. Stellar customer service!
But truly, I expected no less given that Danielle’s San Diego Acne Clinic boast a perfect 5 star rating on Yelp. It’s clear that the excellent service and care that is given to her clients at the clinic has transitioned into CLEARSTEM’s product line and customer experience.
Is CLEARSTEM Worth It?
Given its co-founder’s clinical background in anti-acne solutions, while writing this CLEARSTEM skincare review, it’s clear to me that this brand is not just peddling quick-fix solutions to those dealing with blemishes and breakouts well into adulthood. These formulas appear to be carefully researched, are made with clean, non-toxic, cruelty-free ingredients, and fight signs of aging along with acne.
Based on the overwhelmingly positive customer response, it’s evident that the vast majority of buyers have seen great results from using these products regularly. The brand has also demonstrated a great customer-focused mentality through its “Ditch Your Acne” course and the helpful and informative blog authored by the co-founders.
So what does all that add up to? Well, in case it wasn’t clear already in this CLEARSTEM skincare review, I have no hesitation in saying that this brand is definitely worth a try for those combating acne.
CLEARSTEM Promotions & Discounts
There are three key ways you can save when you buy from the CLEARSTEM website directly:
- You can receive $10 in store credit when you sign up for the brand’s e-newsletter
- Subscriptions knock 15% off the regular price of any product
- Kits give you 2-3 products together at a discounted price (up to $35 off, for the CLEARSTEM Clear Kit)
- Shipping is free for orders over $75
Where to Buy CLEARSTEM
Looking to finally put an end to your long-lasting acne issues? You can buy CLEARSTEM products directly from the brand at clearstemskincare.com, as well as from the CLEARSTEM store on Amazon.
Who owns CLEARSTEM?
CLEARSTEM is owned by its co-founders Danielle Gronich and Kayleigh Christina. The women originally met at Danielle’s San Diego Acne Clinic, where Kayleigh was a patient.
Are CLEARSTEM products natural?
“Natural” is a loaded word when it comes to consumer goods these days. And while I came across that word a few times throughout this CLEARSTEM review, not all ingredients are. However, I can happily state that all the brand’s products are non-toxic, vegan, and cruelty-free.
Does CLEARSTEM offer a skin quiz?
Indeed it does! On the brand website, you can take a 6-minute quiz that asks you questions about your biggest skincare concerns, your diet, what kind of products you typically use, and your overall skincare goals. Once you submit your answers, the brand will email you with personalized advice and product suggestions.
What is the Ditch Your Acne course?
The Ditch Your Acne course is a specialized program that gives you access to group coaching sessions with CLEARSTEM’s team of acne and skincare experts. The four-week course will help you narrow down the cause(s) of your acne (e.g., hormones, diet, gut health, etc.) and provide you with recommendations for how to address them.
On top of that, you will also receive discounts and coupons for CLEARSTEM products that you can use to start your new anti-acne regimen. Not too shabby!
From there, they will provide you special discounts and coupons for CLEARSTEM products as well as their expert recommendations to put your acne to bed once and for all.
What is CLEARSTEM’s Shipping Policy?
CLEARSTEM offers free standard shipping for all US orders of $75. Charges for orders below that amount, as well as for those requesting expedited or international shipping, will be calculated at checkout.
For items that are in stock, orders will likely be shipped out within 24 hours. Any changes or cancellations are not guaranteed due to the timely nature in which orders are processed.
US orders usually arrive in 5-7 business days, while international orders typically take 2-4 weeks. Note that international shipments may be liable for import taxes and duties, which are the responsibility of the customer and will be collected upon delivery.
What is CLEARSTEM’s Return Policy?
Here’s where the brand really draws a line in the sand. While CLEARSTEM will accept returns (within three weeks of purchase) if you experience an allergic reaction to a product, all other refund requests are evaluated individually. You can reach out to the brand’s customer service team via one of the methods below to inquire about other eligible grounds for returns.
How to Contact CLEARSTEM
I think I’ve done a reasonably bang-up job giving you all the info you need in this CLEARSTEM review, but hey, nobody’s perfect. If you want to take your questions to the brand directly, you can reach out via:
- Email: [email protected] or send them a DM on Instagram @clearstemskincare
- You can also use the message portal on the brands website
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