I first tried proactiv for my acne about a year and 4 months ago. I saw it on a TV infomercial and then I realized there was a proactiv stand in one of the malls by my house I went and bought the basic kit that comes with the renewing cleanser, toner, repairing lotion and refining mask. Before you use it they told me I should start seeing results within a couple of weeks but that it depends on the person and typically really noticable results for people with more severe acne(like me) was seen from 4-6 weeks. I thought well damn this stuff is expensive so it sure as hell better work! lol Yeah it didn't nothing even close to what they say in the information packet or the commercials. Of course I'm not so naive as to think that everything thats put on tv is 100% true but still I was expecting a much better outcome.
The 3 step system of proactiv isn't exactly hard to use; it is very tiresome and annoying but if you're really serious about getting rid of your acne then you'd be willing to try anything. So I used it properly but even after 3 months I'd only seen a small difference. It just looked like one of my normal "good acne days" but it was like that everyday. I kept at it though and eventually I started buying it from tv offers(it's cheaper than the mall) but even then it adds up. Plus if it doesn't work they just tell you -Oh well you also have to buy this moisturizer and this mask and this lotion etc...- Whatever happened to just 3 steps? Seriously I don't want all that other crap or I'll go totally broke! In the end the money I was paying plus the hassle of following all the steps was not worth the small result I got out of it. Oh and it also made my skin very dry at times then it would radically switch to being too oily (thats the benzoyl peroxide at work).The toner was the best part, but there are other more cheaper toners out there that are just as good.
My Recommendation based on years of personal expereince and struggle with acne is this: If you really want to try proactive because you've seen it on tv or have heard its good from somewhere etc...then by all means go right ahead. just because I was unsatisfied with it doesn't mean you will be too. But seriously I'm just seeing my dermatalogist instead, I mean it's free and prescrptions don't cost anything so unlike proactive you don't lose anything by asking your doctor to help you with your acne instead.
Oh and I was still using proactiv until recently so even after a year and some it still wasn't working! Yeah I became stubborn about it, that why I continued to use it for so long. Well I hope my review was helpful to someone! I've also tried many many other acne products out there, the over the counter stuff etc... So I'll be posting more reviews on them as well, or feel free to ask me about any products your curious about...there's a good chance I've tried them before ( as long as its sold in Canada). GOODLUCK ON YOUR PERSONAL GETTING RID OF AWFUL ACNE QUEST! (I'm still on the journey)