What is the REAL Deal With Rodan + Fields?

Rodan_and_FieldsOver the last year or so, I’ve been receiving numerous emails and messages through my Facebook Page from different people wanting to talk to me about a lucrative business opportunity with Rodan + Fields. At first, I just ignored these messages. I receive messages from people all the time, wanting to sell me their latest and greatest skincare product line, in hopes of having their products featured on my blog. I don’t tune it all out though. I do keep my eyes and ears open for the really interesting and fun stuff, but nothing is a bigger turn-off than a hard, cold sell.

The emails I’ve received about the “incredible opportunity” with Rodan + Fields have felt pretty pushy. They always come from different people, asking if I’d be interested in partnering up with them to sell this amazing clinical skincare brand. I’m EXTREMELY picky about the products I add to my own home skincare routine. I think everyone should be. What works for one might not work for all. Half the battle of achieving good skin is about finding the right products and ingredients that work for your own skin. That’s why when I find a product or product line that I love and helps me achieve gorgeous skin, I stick by it and talk about it on my blog. I’m really unlikely to buy a skincare product I’ve only read about online and have been pitched to multiple times by multiple people about.

Even though I’ve ignored all of the emails and messages I’ve received regarding the Rodan + Fields business opportunities, I decided to do a little investigating on my own. What was this company all about? What’s the deal with their products? Why were so many people wanting me to work with them? Was I missing out on a great opportunity or even worse, was this a scam?

Turns out Rodan + Fields is a legitimate business. In 2002, two Bay Area practicing dermatologists, Katie Rodan, MD and Kathy Fields, MD, decided to partner up and start a clinical skincare brand. Between these two ladies, their credentials include being Stanford-trained professors, practicing dermatologists, board-certified and creators of Proactiv, an acne treatment system sold exclusively through infomercials. Creating a skincare product line seemed like the natural next step for these two women to do. Rodan + Fields was originally sold in department stores. In 2009, they took the skincare line out of stores and turned the business into a direct selling company. This meant that instead of the stores doing all of the selling, they’d have independent consultants do the selling for them.

All of the emails I’ve received over the last year have been from independent consultants wanting to either sell me products or become a partner with them so that I could sell products to people in my own Circle of Influence. Either way, the independent consultants would receive a commission off of anything I’d buy or anything I’d sell. Of course Rodan + Fields would take their cut from all of the business transactions from both parties, including the actual product sales. At first, I wondered why a company would pull their product out of stores if their line had been selling so successfully. Then I realized that the cost of selling the product line in department stores was probably a whole lot more expensive than having independent consultants who work on a commission base sell the product for them. What a smart business model! Rodan + Fields is really no different than companies like Avon, Herbalife, Mary Kay, Amway, The Pampered Chef, Tupperware, Nerium and Isagenix. The only thing that is different is the product they’re selling.

Okay, okay, so what about the products? Rodan + Fields considers their product line to be a clinical skincare brand. There are seven different categories within the brand: Redefine (for fine lines, wrinkles and pores), Reverse (for brown spots and sun damage), Unblemish (their solution to acne), Soothe (for sensitive skin types), Enhancements (includes scrubs and peptides), Essentials (where all of their miscellaneous items live such as body lotion, body sunscreen, sunless tanning lotion, lip treatments and supplements) and AMD MD, which looks like a mechanical exfoliating tool. All of the products “combine pharmaceutical ingredients with active cosmetics in aesthetically elegant vehicles.” Definition: super charged products loaded with active ingredients in pretty packaging. Plus, all of the “systems” are packaged in 60-day quantities because we all know that any skincare regime doesn’t start to show any effects unless the products are used consistently for at least four to six weeks.

This company was really interesting to research online. Anytime I thought I’d come across an article talking about how Rodan + Fields was a scam or a pyramid scheme, the article would end up being a sales pitch for a multi-level marketing company. Most of these type of articles would defend Rodan + Fields for not being a scam and then offer to sell their “secret” on how to be a successful, independent consultant for the company.  It’s extremely clever marketing on the MLM company’s part. These MLM companies knew that people thinking about becoming an independent consultant for Rodan + Fields might do a Google search for “Rodan + Fields” or even “Rodan + Fields scam.” What better way to advertise your marketing services to the very people who are looking to getting into marketing their own business as an independent consultant?

I did check out a few reviews online for a some of the products in the line. The general consensus I found online was that either people really loved these products or they really hated them. For the haters, they consistently stated that the products they used left their skin in a worse state than what their skin was before they started using them. I also stumbled upon a controversy about the actual ingredients being used in some of the products and a debate on whether or not these products had been tested on animals. According to PETA, they don’t.

I have never used any of the Rodan + Fields products on my own skin. If you’re thinking about trying these products, treat it as you would with any other skincare purchase. Do your research. Find out if these products would work well with your skin and treat the skin conditions you’re concerned about. Don’t be afraid to ask for samples. Always try a product before buying it.

My recommendation? If you’re treating something as complex as hyperpigmentation, acne or Rosecea, ALWAYS seek the advice of a licensed esthetician and/or dermatologist FIRST before prescribing skincare products and treating these conditions on your own. Always take the advice of a licensed professional over any salesperson or independent consultant who’s looking to make a commission off of anything you buy.

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