Revolve 400X

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Revolve 400X is a kit that includes a hand-held, battery-powered device to which you can attach your choice of two different brush heads: a nylon-bristle brush to cleanse skin in the same manner as the popular Clarisonic device, or a firm, synthetic sponge (named the Soft Foam Exfoliator) meant to be used with the tube of Polishing Crystals that also are included in the kit.

You probably won’t be shocked to learn that the claim for this combination of machine and scrub is that it’s supposed to be equivalent to a professional microdermabrasion treatment, able to “polish away surface imperfections.” Yet not even professional microdermabrasion (a procedure that was never as effective as claimed) can do that.

It’s nice to think we can just “polish” away what we don’t like about our skin, but the vast majority of skin issues cannot be eliminated this way. By the way, the term “polish” is just another way to describe a scrub—it just sounds more elegant.

When it comes to acne, you can’t scrub it away, and, in fact, scrubbing can make matters worse, and all the scrubbing and “polishing” in the world isn’t going to get rid of wrinkles or eliminate discolorations. Exfoliating skin absolutely has benefit, but a scrub isn’t the best way to achieve those results.

What you end up getting with the Revolve 400X is just another way to clean your skin. The cleansing brush attachment is a decent way to enhance your cleansing routine if you wear a lot of makeup or just prefer an extra clean feeling. The good news is that even with the powered device on high speed, the rotating brush feels soft and glides easily over your skin as you cleanse. You can use any water-soluble cleanser with this attachment, although, of course, DDF recommends using theirs.

The Polishing Crystals are a problem, especially when used with the Soft Foam Exfoliator attachment. This pairing results in a harsh treatment that is too abrasive for all skin types, even if you’re being gentle. The Paula's Choice Team can easily imagine women getting carried away with this polishing step, leading to dry, red, and irritated skin from an impaired barrier. Used by itself, the Polishing Crystals are still abrasive and the baking soda–based formula is needlessly alkaline, so it can cause further dryness and irritation.

In the end, this is a very expensive way to potentially hurt your skin rather than make imperfections a thing of the past. The cleansing brush attachment is an OK option, but the scrub and Soft Foam Exfoliator attachment make this kit impossible to recommend.

A breakthrough device that delivers microdermabrasion results that are as effective as a professional treatment. Unlike most at-home devices that simply vibrate or oscillate, DDF Revolve 400X transmits more energy to the skin with up to 400 rotations per minute. The gentle, yet highly effective self-warming DDF Polishing Crystals and the soft Foam Exfoliator polish away surface imperfections to reveal radiant, healthy-looking skin. The kit also includes a brush head to use with the device for daily deep cleansing and to help maintain results between treatments.

PEG-8, Sodium Bicarbonate, Silica Silylate, Polysorbate 20, Niacinamide, Tocopheryl Acetate, Ascorbic Acid

This skin-care company's Web site has it right with the statement that "before the beauty world discovered dermatologic skincare brands, there was DDF." Launched in 1991, well before it became common practice for "known" dermatologists to create their own skin-care lines, pioneering dermatologist Dr. Howard Sobel began and is still behind this brand. This is a long-standing line that has the backing of a dermatologist (and later that of nutritional consultant Elaine Linker), so you would expect DDF to be just what the doctor ordered. In some respects, it is. However, more often than not, products from dermatologists are just as prone to outlandish claims, exorbitant prices, and use of unproven ingredients as products from any other cosmetics line. A founder's medical background isn't a guarantee that every product he or she creates will do exactly what it claims or even be sensibly formulated. In that sense, DDF falters more than it succeeds. Sobel's credibility for creating treatment-based skin-care products is diminished when inappropriate ingredients (alcohol, menthol, and others) are included in products positioned as prestige products with a medicinal slant. Still, there are some very impressive options available (particularly in the moisturizer and serum categories) that, price notwithstanding, are worthy of consideration.

The line's success has not gone unnoticed by larger companies eyeing the growing trend of anti-aging skin care and the popularity of niche lines. It will be interesting to see how things shake out for DDF now that it is owned by consumer product giant Procter & Gamble. P&G released a statement that they intend to "infuse the line with a steady stream of innovation", add marketing expertise, and level its global reach and go-to-market capability to drive future growth (Source: They certainly have the money and staff to accomplish these goals, but it's worth mentioning that P&G's Olay brand, although mass market and at a lower price point, features many products that rival the best of what DDF offers, and with far fewer missteps.

For more information about DDF, call 1-800-818-9770 or visit

Special Note:

As of Summer 2011, DDF launched a new website and reformulated many of their products, but their new site contains incorrect and incomplete ingredient lists for most of their products. We've alerted DDF to the issue and are continuing to research these changes in store. In the meantime, we urge anyone considering a DDF purchase based on our recommendation to double check the product's ingredient list against ours in case the product has been reformulated. We will update the brand as information becomes available to us.

Member Comments

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  1. How would you rate the results? (4 = Best)

    4 / 4 Best
  2. Was this product a good value? (4 = Best)

    4 / 4 Best
  3. Would you recommend this product? (4 = Best)

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  1. Dayana R.
    Reviewed on Wednesday, June 05, 2013
    • Value
      4 / 4
    • Results
      4 / 4
    • Recommend
      4 / 4
    Good brush but could do without the polishing cream
    • I started using this product a week ago to give my face a better clean. I will admit, it has helped to deep clean my nose and my blackheads in that area are almost gone. However I will agree with Paula that the polishing crystal cream is nothing to write home about. Moreover if not used wisely, you can hurt your face with or without the cream. I like to use the brush with my normal cleaner for a deep clean.

About the Experts

Paula Begoun is the best-selling author of 20 books on skin care and makeup. She is known worldwide as the Cosmetics Cop and creator of Paula's Choice. Paula's expertise has led to hundreds of appearances on national and international television including:

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The Paula's Choice Research Team is dedicated to helping you find the absolute best products for your skin, using research-based criteria to review beauty products from an honest, balanced perspective. Each member of the team was personally trained by Paula herself.

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