The Evil MLM’pire of Nerium Int’l. Strong Medicine, Strange Bedfellows.

UPDATE & REVIEW:  Nerium International refuses to answer key questions about its science, and uses Watergate style bullying tactics to try to silence critics.  What does  nerium oleander science reveal?  What is the truth? Is Nerium AD safe, or actually harmful? Real, or scam?    Read these most popular posts reviewing Nerium AD, nerium whistleblowing, and the NeriumGate scandal. —>

ORIGINAL POST  (June 17, 2012) : In the last installment, we raised some red flags about the newest fad to hit the internet, and everywhere else commerce is practiced – Nerium.  Today we are going to explore the MD Anderson Cancer center connection,  the early testimonials (from places not owned by Nerium Distributors), and the whole world of MLM and what it means for those involved.

Let’s start with what the Nerium people themselves say about why you should join their cult:

  1.  Jeff Olson has excelled in network marketing since 1989. He has been a top distributor all over the world.
  2.  The science is from a pioneering research institute in many different areas of medicine, especially cancer research.  (from MD Anderson Cancer Center, no less).
  3.  Nerium is a ground floor opportunity with all-star leadership
  4.  Nerium has a simple system that focuses on sharing the product, not selling.
  5.  Nerium AD actually works! (We shall have to look at the truth of this claim.)
  6.  Nerium International has a fun culture where everyone feels welcome.
  7.  Nerium has first class marketing tools. No expense was spared in branding!
  8.  Nerium has a management team with tremendous success in the MLM field.
  9.  Nerium has an incredible compensation plan.
  10.  Nerium has the potential to become a recognized brand around the world.
  11.  Nerium is REAL! (yes, but real what?)


So there you have it. Eleven reasons and nearly all focus on the MLM. None clearly defines the science. Where do I sign up? Get in line quick before the real rush begins.

The  MD Anderson connection -” it must be real if MD Anderson looked at it …”

The MD Anderson Cancer Center is an internationally recognized institute and place of excellence in cancer care. As part of their mission, they look at many areas of research, some not always so obvious to western scientists, but worth a serious look nonetheless. Their website mentions the following areas of research.

  • Studying the bio-behavioral effects of mind/body-based interventions such as stress management including Indian-based yoga, Tibetan-based yoga, qigong, meditation, music therapy, expressive writing and other behavioral approaches
  • Examining the anti-cancer potential of natural animal or plant compounds such as dietary supplements, vitamins and herbal remedies. Products being studied include green tea, turmeric, oleander, melatonin, shark cartilage, fish oil, mushrooms and many others
  • Using acupuncture to treat some common cancer treatment related side effects including pain, xerostomia, nausea and others. Determining the biological bases of acupuncture also is an important part of this research endeavor
  • Examining traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) for cancer. Part of this research is being done with colleagues at the Fudan University Cancer Hospital clinical trial.
All research hospitals compete for NIH grants. In the past several years, there has been a new category of grant, for studies in “complementary & alternative” medicine practices. Folk medicine, that sort of thing.  Oleander was examined as part of that effort. Now being a cellular poison, its a good candidate to kill cancer cells.  In fact any cells.
But of course, this is not what the nerium people are claiming. They are claiming an anti-aging benefit.  problem is, that is not what MD Anderson studied. Conducting research in Nerium oleander and finding efficacy in the field of malignancy treatment is entirely plausible and investment and additional research confirms positive preliminary effect. So where is the purported data about beneficial anti-aging effects on skin? I may have looked in all the wrong places, but it seems a huge benefit would have been easy to confirm somewhere in the scientific literature.  But … according to PubMed, there is not a single study to be found that shows nerium benefiting skin.   Not even a theoretical paper giving a rationale. In fact, if you search PubMed for nerium and skin, you get three papers. One in Japanese about allergic reactions  (not surprising, as it is a cell poison), one about mouse tumor suppression (not surprising, as it is a cell poison). , and one out of India showing it can kill some bacteria  (not surprising, as it is a cell poison).  But do we find a single paper finding that it benefits aging skin? No!  (not surprising, as it is a cell poison).
We are in the process of tracking down the MD Anderson connection.  We spent quite a bit of time trying to find one Robert A. Newman, PhD, without much success. Seems his extension was changed, but nobody had a new one.  We are working through the office of external communications to explore this highly touted connection.  So far, nobody at MD Anderson that we have talked to has ever heard of Nerium.  But it’s a big place, so that doesn’t concern us.  We remain diligent in our efforts to interview Dr Newman, and will hopefully have something to report on that tomorrow.

So where are all the glowing reports about Nerium on beauty blogsites?

I searched a popular internet beauty forum while writing this and found three entries about Nerium, two of which were obvious pitches to join the MLM. I found this one fact an astounding indictment that serious beauty bloggers are paying no attention to this product. (I ask readers to comment on their experience here at BFT. This tells me the product has not made it into the “mainstream” of informed consumers, or could there possibly be nothing to share? What other “user experience” comments are out there?

“Smells like a combination of ball-sweat and earwax. With minimal results, Nerium AD was not for me.”

“I was given an opportunity to test and review an Age-Defying treatment called Nerium AD.  This product seemed like a great way to fight the reaper although I don’t have a lot of wrinkles or age spots. After 2-3 weeks, I realized something.  I’m not seeing a lot of results.  I was taking before/during/after pictures like recommended, but there was no change.”

“ I am 53 years old, have always taken care of my skin and did not notice any benefits using this product for 3 weeks. I am also very surprised to see Oleander Leaf as an ingredient in this product because it is poisonous.”

Other dislikes include:

“The pump mechanism didn’t work properly. I was told how to fix it, but the matter was brushed off like “oh, that happens all the time. Deal with it.”

“I’m testing the product for a review, and all of a sudden I get bombarded with “BECOME AN AFFILIATE” information in the mail and in my email’s inbox. It took a while to get the ‘unsubscribe’ to finally stick. Thanks for the unwarranted solicitation.”

“And the smell…OMGTHESMELL..”

“I tried the product for a month and got absolutely NO results. I took before and after pictures as well. It makes me sick to see friends and acquaintances jumping on the Nerium bandwagon. This is such a scam.”

“Smells like something between ball sweat and rotting ear wax”

“I tried Nerium AD for almost a full month and did NOT notice any results on my wrinkles, skin texture or discoloration. The product smells nasty. Not for me!”

“I just sat on hold for 10 minutes with customer service. The pump does not work and now I have to leave for work. I feel ripped off.”

“I’m so glad I tried the product before being tricked to join this “amazing” company “on the ground level” because it’s a “once in a lifetime opportunity.” Gag. This product is complete garbage. I actually tried it a second time, because I thought there was no way my “friends” could be lying to me. Guess what, I was right the first time. This product is useless. So sad that people would try to trick their friends and family. The photoshopped “after” photos are a joke.

Problem 1: Pump didn’t work. They told me how to fix the spring and mentioned it happens all the time. 20 minutes on the phone and playing with the product I’ll never get back.”

“After 20 days, I’m not noticing any differences.”

“IT IS ON YOUR FACE AND SMELLING HORRIBLE!! I go to sleep with it on and my boyfriend refuses to kiss me goodnight. The smell drives him crazy!

“I’m being hounded to become an affiliate, and start selling myself. God, I’m being sucked into a *&^# % pyramid scheme, aren’t I??

“Nerium AD, I will not be buying your product again. Waste of time, waste of money, and HIGHLY UN-RECOMMENDED!!! I have been invited to a meeting, and first of all, I wonder with all the natural ingredients… why in the heck does it cost so much. And, secondly, when I google the product, most of the information is about becoming a partner in this MLM business.”

“Ye gads, I signed up for the autoship program and now I can’t cancel it…HELP!!”

In all fairness, I must say I did see a LOTof positive reviews for this product. All of them were written by someone who is either already part of the MLM organization, or is more than willing to sign you up…one level under them.

Are MLM’s simply annoying? Or truly evil?

The evil MLM’pire.

I am going to borrow heavily here from Robert Fitzpatrick, president of Pyramid Scheme Alert and co-author of the book, False Profits: Seeking Financial and Spiritual Deliverance in Multi-level Marketing and Pyramid Schemes.  There are some very interesting facts here. I’m doing a digest version.

“Research has shown that the MLM business model, as it is practiced by most companies, is a marketplace hoax. In those cases, the business is primarily a scheme to continuously enroll distributors and little product is ever retailed to consumers who are not also enrolled as distributors.

In general, MLM industry claims of distributor income potential, its descriptions of the ‘network’ business model and its prophecies of a reigning destiny in product distribution have as much validity in business as UFO sightings do in the realm of science. Financially, the odds for an individual to achieve financial success under those circumstances rival the odds of winning at the tables in Las Vegas.

MLM is not defined and regulated like, for instance, franchises are. MLMs can be established without federal or state approval. There is no federal law specifically against pyramid schemes. Many state anti-pyramid statutes are vague or weak. State or federal regulation usually involves first proving that the company is a pyramid scheme. This process can take years and by then, the damage to consumers is done. Indeed, even when MLM pyramids are shut down, often the promoters immediately set up new companies under new names and resume scamming the public.

MLM’s economic score card is characterized by massive failure rates and financial losses for millions of consumers. Its structure in which positions on an endless sales chain are purchased by selling or buying goods is mathematically unsustainable and its system of allowing unlimited numbers of distributors in any market area is inherently unstable.

MLM’s espoused core business – personal retailing – is contrary to trends in communication technology, cost-effective distribution, and consumer buying preferences. The retailing activity is, in reality, only a pretext for the actual core business – enrolling investors in pyramid organizations that promise exponential income growth.

As in all pyramid schemes, the incomes of those distributors at the top and the profits to the sponsoring corporations come from a continuous influx of new investors at the bottom. Viewed superficially in terms of company profits and the wealth of an elite group at the pinnacle of the MLM industry, the model can appear viable to the uninformed, just as all pyramid schemes do before they collapse or are exposed by authorities.

Deceptive marketing that ably plays upon treasured cultural beliefs, social and personal needs, and some economic trends account for MLM’s growth, rather than its ability to meet any consumer needs. The deceptive marketing is nurtured by a general lack of professional evaluation or investigation by reputable business media. Consequently, a popular delusion is supported that MLM is a viable business investment or career choice for nearly everyone and the odds of financial success in the venture are comparable or better than other trades, professions, employment or business ventures.

MLM’s true constituency is not the consuming public but rather hopeful investors. The market for these investors grows significantly in times of economic transition, globalization and employee displacement. Promises of quick and easy financial deliverance and the beguiling association of wealth with ultimate happiness also play well in this market setting. The marketing thrust of MLM is accordingly directed to prospective distributors, rather than product promotions to purchasers. Its true products are not long distance phone services, vitamin pills, health potions or skin lotions, but rather the investment propositions for distributorships, which are deceptively portrayed with images of high income, minimal time requirements, small capital investments and early success.

The word, lie, is provoking and it is used here for provocative purposes. At some level, everyone who participates in MLM in which little retailing is occurring is unconsciously lying to himself or herself. Many at the top of these organizations are consciously lying to everyone else. Deception is inherent in this type of MLM scheme and is pervasive in its marketing. Here are 10 of the biggest lies I have found to be present in almost every MLM I have encountered.

Lie #1: MLM is a business offering better opportunities for making large sums of money than all other conventional business and professional models.

Truth: For almost everyone who invests MLM turns out to be a losing financial proposition. This is not an opinion, but a historical fact. Consider some notable examples from among the largest MLMs.

In the largest of all MLMs, Amway, only 1/2 of one percent of all distributors make it to the basic level of “direct” distributor, and the average income of all Amway distributors is about $40 a month. The MLM type of business structure can support only a small number of financial winners. If a 1,000-person downline is needed to earn a sustainable income, those 1,000 will need one million more to duplicate the success. How many people can realistically be enrolled? Much of what appears as growth is in fact only the continuous churning of new enrollees. The money for the rare winners comes from the constant enrollment of armies of losers.

This pattern of 50-70% of all distributors quitting within one year holds true also for NuSkin, the industry’s second largest MLM. NuSkin also exemplifies the accompanying pattern in which a tiny percent of the distributors gain the majority of all company rebates. In 1998, NuSkin paid out 2/3rds of its entire rebates to just 200 upliners out of more than 63,000 “active” distributors. The money they received came directly from the unprofitably investments of the 99.7% of the others.

If ALL distributors who participate are included the losses and the average incomes are exposed as much worse. And, if all the distributors who enroll and quit over several years are included, the odds of success for a new distributor/investor are shown to be absurdly low. Yet, these companies typically advertise their business as “an opportunity of a life time” with “unlimited potential.”

Lie #2: Network marketing is the most popular and effective new way to bring products to market. Consumers like to buy products on a one-to-one basis in the MLM model.

Truth: If you strip MLM of its hallmark activity of continuously reselling distributorships and examine its foundation, the one-to-one retailing of products to customers, you encounter an unproductive and impractical system of sales upon which the entire structure is supposed to rest.The unfeasibility of door-to-door retailing is why MLM is, in reality, a business that just keeps reselling the opportunity to sign up more distributors.

Lie #3: Eventually all products will be sold by MLM, a new form of marketing. Retail stores, shopping malls, catalogues and most forms of advertising will soon be rendered obsolete by MLM.

Truth: MLM is not new. It has been around since the late 1960′s. Yet, today it still represents less than one percent of US retail sales. Most MLM customers quit buying the goods as soon as they quit seeking the “business opportunity.” There is no brand loyalty. Its real products are distributorships which are sold with misrepresentation and exaggerated promises of income. People are buying products in order to secure positions on the sales pyramid. The possibility is always held out that you may become rich if not from your own efforts then from some unknown person who might join your ‘downline,’ the ‘big fish’ as they are called.

Lie #4: MLM is a new way of life that offers happiness and fulfillment. It is a means to attain all the good things in life.

Truth: The most prominent motivating appeal of the MLM industry as shown in industry literature and presented at recruitment meetings is the crassest form of materialism. Fortune 100 companies would blush at the excess of promises of wealth and luxury put forth by MLM solicitors. These promises are presented as the ticket to personal fulfillment. MLM’s overreaching appeal to wealth and luxury conflicts with most people’s true desire for meaningful and fulfilling work in something in which they have special talent or interest. In short, the culture of this business side tracks many people from their personal values and desires to express their unique talents and aspirations.

Lie #5: MLM is a spiritual movement.

Truth: The use of spiritual concepts like prosperity consciousness and creative visualization to promote MLM enrollment is common . The misuse of these spiritual principles should be a signal that the investment opportunity is deceptive. When a product is wrapped in the flag or in religion, buyer beware! The ‘community’ and ‘support’ offered by MLM organizations to new recruits are based entirely upon their purchases. If the purchases and enrollment decline, so does the ‘communion.’

Lie #6: Success in MLM is easy. Friends and relatives are the natural prospects. Those who love and support you will become your lifetime customers.

Truth: The commercialization of family and friendship relations or the use of ‘warm leads’ which is required in the MLM marketing program is a destructive element in the community and very unhealthy for individuals involved. Capitalizing upon family ties and loyalties of friendships in order to build a business can destroy ones social foundation. It places stress on relationships that may never return to their original bases of love, loyalty and support. Beyond its destructive social aspects, experience shows that few people enjoy or appreciate being solicited by friends and relatives to buy products.

Lie #7: You can do MLM in your spare time. As a business, it offers the greatest flexibility and personal freedom of time. A few hours a week can earn a significant supplemental income and may grow to a very large income making other work unnecessary

Truth: decades of experience involving millions of people have proven that making money in MLM requires extraordinary time commitment as well as considerable personal wiliness, persistence and deception. Beyond the sheer hard work and special aptitude required, the business model inherently consumes more areas of ones life and greater segments of time. In MLM, everyone is a prospect. Every waking moment is a potential time for marketing. There are no off-limit places, people or times for selling. Consequently, there is no free space or free time once a person enrolls in MLM system.

Under the guise of creating money independently and in your free time, the system gains control and dominance over people’s entire lives and requires rigid conformity to the program. This accounts for why so many people who become deeply involved end up needing and relying upon MLM desperately. They alienate or abandon other sustaining relationships.

Lie #8. MLM is a positive, supportive new business that affirms the human spirit and personal freedom.

Truth: MLM marketing materials reveal that much of the message is fear-driven and based upon deception about income potential.  A sound business opportunity does not have to base its worth on negative predictions and warnings.

Lie #9. MLM is the best option for owning your own business and attaining real economic independence.

Truth: MLM is not true self-employment. ‘Owning’ an MLM distributorship is an illusion. Some MLM companies forbid distributors from carrying additional lines.  MLM distributors are not entrepreneurs but joiners in a complex hierarchical system over which they have little control.

Lie #10: MLM is not a pyramid scheme because products are sold.

Truth: The sale of products is in no way a protection from anti-pyramid scheme statutes or unfair trade practices set forth in federal and state law. MLMs that sell useful, quality products have been successfully prosecuted under anti-pyramid scheme laws by state and federal officials. Recent court rulings are using a 70% rule to determine an MLM’s legality. At least 70% of all goods sold by the MLM company must be purchased by non-distributors. This standard would place most MLM companies outside the law. The largest of all MLMs acknowledges that only 18% of its sales are made to non-distributors.”

I don’t know about you folks, but this expose’ makes me sick.  I feel so badly for the people caught up in this lie.  It makes me very angry at the exploiters at the top of this pyramid. They know what they are doing.

Mr. Olson, I have but one question for you …. how can you sleep at night, knowing that you are adding so much misery to so many people’s lives?

NEXT IN THE SERIES:  Exploring the MD Anderson connection in more depth. Will we find Dr. Newman?  What will he have to offer to enlighten us on the science?  Will it help us to stomach what we just learned about MLM’s?  Is it ever ethical for doctors, or major NIH-supported cancer research and treatment centers, to push MLM schemes? Stay tuned.  Oh, and leave your comments.  We haven’t heard from Neriumites yet.

















  1. Amy Donatello says:

    This is fascinating information. I have been approached to puchase Nerium and have been looking into the facts which as you say are nearly impossible to research on the internet since there are so many websites trying to sell you the stuff or get you to sign up.

    I am looking forward to the next topic in this series. Thank you for investigating this.

    • xxxx says:

      Well, I don’t know about everyone else, but I really LOVE this product and I think it is an amazing opportunity. I have a really special system that makes is really easy to share Nerium that is even better than their method. I think that helps too. I can teach people how to get to $10K a month in their first 3-4 months. If you want to know what I am doing and how I approach this, you can call me anytime.

      Thanks for letting us post our opinions here.



      • Jen says:

        let me know thanks

      • NR says:

        Webpage against MLM’s and Nerium? Looks like a great place to advertise! REALLY?!?! The “There are no off-limit places, people or times for selling.” comment above was spot on. My friend is getting sucked into this black hole of eventual self destruction, and he has been doing a fantastic job of alienating his friends, and setting himself up for financial ruin.

  2. Drgeorge says:

    We are sleuthing away, currently trying to get information from certain highly visible players in this melodrama. So far, it has been futile but we don’t give up easily. The din of promotion is incredible; the praise of the product almost non-existent except from “brand partners”.

  3. Emily Clark says:

    It’s actually really refreshing to read an opposing view on Nerium. Google anything related to Nerium and you’re going to be bombarded with ‘review’ after ‘review’ about how great the company is and a way to sign up. Many of these sites obviously copy-and-pasting the same material until you read it so often you feel physically ill.
    I made the huge mistake of jumping on board as the wonderful BRAND PARTNER after being suckered into it by my best friend and roommate. She started talking about it a month or two ago and saying her friend’s aunt had already made 25K just since March and how awesome the product was. Went to a few parties, luncheons, and meetings and I heard over and over how AMAZING it was, how if you didn’t get into it now, you’d regret it. Heard this wealthy Darin Kidd just keep talking about how he was bankrupt, but Jeff Olson convinced him to do it and now he hasn’t had a job in years. Blah, blah, Jeff Olson the “millionaire maker”. I tend to be a skeptic about anything that sounds too good to be true, but I guess the fact that my friend was shoving it down my throat didn’t make that skepticism melt away a bit. So $534 later, here was my kit in the mail with books and bottles. I made my attempt, since apparently the bottle sells itself, and it honestly didn’t. I got my mom to buy out of the kindness of her heart, and she swears she hasn’t noticed a difference. I’ll admit, my face felt softer, but I took pictures and nothing physically changed. I could probably put any lotion on my face and leave it on at night and it’d feel better. The smell is off putting as well, and my upline always told me I’d get used to it, even love it. Nope, never happened. I still think it smells like mold.
    Well, the challenging part was sending it back. I’m still awaiting my refund. You have to print and either scan/fax these forms to even request and refund or cancellation of auto-delivery. You have to call for a number to put on the box. There still could be a restocking fee or I may not be refunded for product used–even in my 30 day ‘trial’ period. My friend on the other hand has been so sucked in that our relationship has already GREATLY suffered. Of course she’s going to be hostile with me–she isn’t making money off of me anymore! Wasn’t that the whole point, anyways? I certainly feel used by her. And now she’s getting time off from her job that makes money in her pocket to throw away money for conferences (over $500 in airfare, lodging, and ticket prices for San Diego in a week!), and for dinners (GASP! Jeff Olson came to Lynchburg,..), and luncheons weekly. She’s constantly on phone calls that say the SAME things OVER and OVER. And she doesn’t even realize the small print on this Lexus you supposedly get–if you disqualify after receiving the bonus , it’s yours to pay for! And this bonus is going away in December anyways. Also in fine print, you have to pay a fee to stay with Nerium at the end of the year. Go ahead and add that auto-delivery of $93 to your list of bills to pay Nerium.

    Where is the real income?

    • drjohn says:

      Emily, we are so sorry that you have had to endure the evils of Nerium. But we are glad you got out before the damage was further compounded. The return policy and auto ship for its beloved “sales force” are classical scam behaviors. I am sure that your story will soon be echoed by thousands of others who have been victimized by this MLM. Why it is even legal to hurt so many people this way is far beyond my understanding.

      We are still waiting to hear back from MD Anderson. They were clueless in multiple phone calls – they had never heard of Nerium. Our best wishes to you, and please keep in touch. Dr John

      PS – why is Google’s billion dollar search engine not clever enough to spot MLM’s and other obvious manipulations of the page rank rules, and demote all these scam review pages to junk status at the bottom of the list? In a more perfect world, if you Googled “nerium” you should get BFT’s expose at the top of the list! Hey, Sergei, what ever happened to Google’s trademark promise to “do no evil”? How about extend that to “support no evil with high page rankings”?

      • Emma Sands says:

        I too have been invited to experience the Wonderful World of Nerium AD and decided to do a little research on my own . Fist i decided to look in to ST&T Research who Nerium states did their efficacy and safety .. Very interesting I have no agenda on this other than finding truly verifiable facts. I have made numerous calls to the Nevada # listed on their website .. there is never an answer only a recording that does not identify the business and asking you to leave a message. I also accessed the Better Business Bureau of Nevada website. Doing a Search for ST&T – Nevada with all the various parameters available produces no results. And finally when you do a Google map search for ST&T – Nevada, 88 McFaul Way, Zephyr Cove, NV 89448 you get the “ no results returned message” . When the search parameters are shortened to 88 McFaul Way, Zephyr Cove, NV 89448 a couple of things happen . First you are returned with this business being at that address. and also a listing for Atox Research which curiously claims to be the parent Company of ST&T. Unfortunately the phone number listed (775) 586-8700 has been disconnected. There is no mention that i can find of ST&T reasearch having any other Clients other than Nerium. hmmm Docs have y’all ever heard of ST&T Reasearch?

        As for the MD Anderson Connection or lack thereof..this is from their website..pretty much tells it all

        • Drgeorge says:

          OK, so now we know that the real story and the propogated story by Nerium International are not only dissimilar, they exist in not-so-parallel universes.

          • Jeff says:

            I actually went to one of the presentations and they didn’t say that MD Anderson developed the product. They just said that Newman (working in the private sector now) was one of the researchers that helped develop it. They did add MD Anderson as a credential for Newman, having worked there for a while, but were relatively clear that it wasn’t developed at or by MD Anderson and that Newman no longer worked for MD Anderson. He now works for Nerium, I guess. I actually signed up (as a customer, not salesperson) and I like the product. It smells pretty rough, but I got used to it. I’ve been using it for 3 months and have had pretty good results. Not saying that it would work for everyone, just giving a fair assessment of my experience.

          • drjohn says:

            You are right they started backpedaling on the MD Anderson story after that institution published a disclaimer that was a bit embarrassing. I like Dr Newman’s teams’s work at MD Anderson by the way. Very thorough, and gives great insight into how cardiac glycosides affect cells. Sadly, Dr. Newman seems to have been muzzled by Nerium the MLM, since he has yet to tell us (and the world) how he thinks a substance that slows growth or kills cells is a very well know way, increasing free radicals inside cells, leads to anti-aging benefits. Unless he is now a homeopathy true believer (I sure hope not). Good luck with the product. Are you now selling Nerium Jeff?

        • Michelle says:

          I’m a skeptic! A friend of mine wanted me to attend a meeting with her regarding Nerium AD, I did not have the time so she gave me a bottle to try for seven days and if I liked it, $120.00 and it could be mine. Nice profit margin to dole out to a friend. Anyway, I did not notice any results and starting getting these hard bumps and stopped using this product.

          I let my friend know it was not working and will also share this article with her.

          Thanks for the good investigative work.

          • Jessica Powell says:

            It did not work for me either and the person that got me to buy it deletes my comments when I ppost it does not work and some of the pictures are not the same person.

        • jp says:

          Wow thanks for doing the detective work! I can’t believe people are still falling for MLMs!!

    • Dan Stern says:

      For Emily,

      Be sure you use your telephone to video USP or Fed Ex inventorying the box and taping it shut before you send it back to Nerium. I wish I would have, but one wouldn’t think you would have to take this type of extreme measure to receive your money back… Please call me: We need to stick together on these Nerium scamsters. Dan Stern 702-806-4751

    • skinaddict says:

      I read through the maddness of the comp. plan, 5 hours and 4 pages later of caculations. I came up with this – you must remain ‘active’ meaning you have to have a monthly auto delivery ($93) a month, then if you are a Brand Parter you must pay $30 a month for the Slight Edge subscription. If you do receive a give back bottle they charge you $10 shipping. All this means is you must sign up 11 NEW perferred customers in one calendar month to break even. For me to make back my $1000 investment I need to sign up 88 NEW perferred customers (in Neriums calendar month) No worries though…. Nerium tells me I surely know 1000 people, it sells itself! HA, I feel like a complete idiot for not doing more research before my boss shoved this down my throat. I’m happy she made her $50 “bonus” off me!

      • drjohn says:

        BFT did not (and will not) independently verify these calculations. But if they are true, and skinaddict has all the earmarks of a reliable and diligent truth seeker, all I can say is wow! Just as a point of comparison if you were an affiliate for a company like Avon or Arbonne if you sold $110 worth of product to 88 people you would make approximately 1,000-$3,000. If you were selling into the high end luxe/professional market you would have earned ~$7,500.00 for the same number of sales, AND without a requirement to purchase anything (no risk to you but your time). Just making risk/reward comparisons from what I know.

      • Anon says:

        Just wanted to add to Skinaddict’s list of Nerium expenses: Don’t know if this is standard in every city, but when attending Nerium training sessions and/or “Blitzes” to bring prospects to that are held at hotels or convention centers (every Saturday and often on a weeknight, too), Brand Partners are often required to pay $20 each time (guests are free). Not sure what this fee goes toward — paying the speakers/presenters? Renting the facility? I always wondered why Nerium International Corporate didn’t pay for these things upfront to support the struggling Brand Partners out there….

        And believe me, attending these training sessions and Blitzes are a big part of the Nerium “how to be successful and grow your business” liturgy. Very difficult for people like single parents with jam-packed schedules already.

        But of course, all this is “tax deductible,” right? ;-)

        • DavidH says:

          We went to one “training/conference.” We escaped without paying for the conference (we’ve lost several hundred dollars). For over three hours all we heard was the sales pitch “Slight Edge” message. If you don’t get the “slight edge” message you are a “cuckoo.” Read positive books, associate with positive people, etc. What a boatload of garbage. Positive books means MLM sales books. Positive people means other MLM sales people.

          It’s a cult.

          1) Their problems are reduced to one simple explanation, which is repeatedly emphasized.
          2) They receive what seems to be unconditional love, acceptance, and attention from a charismatic leader or group.
          3) They get a new identity based on the group.
          4) They are subject to entrapment (isolation from friends, relatives and the mainstream culture) and their access to information is severely controlled.

          • Degeorge says:

            Pathognomonic and seems to describe a “cult” to me. Psychological conditioning of the first order resulting in near-religious fervor. In this case, the worst of it is people are at risk to lose money and relationships (a very nasty and sad outcome, to be sure).

  4. Arya Eshraghi says:

    This is very fascinating. I was looking to get involved until I found this. Others have tried to suck me into MLMs like ACN and Amway before, but this one had me convinced that it was different… Did you ever find Dr. Newman? I saw some YouTube videos of him as well as his name on an advisory board for some company that sold vitamins and such found here: (

    Still there seems to be something in the clinical trials they ran found here:

    Could they really have misrepresented their product so blatantly?

    • drjohn says:

      At some point we will do a piece on clinical trials and when to believe or not believe the results. One of them is this–if this were such a grand product, why would you need a MLM to sell it? Answer – you wouldn’t. Can you think of a truly remarkable advance in medicine that was introduced by MLM? Of course not – only mediocre products are sold. If you had a really spectacular product it would be sold through standard channels. You could build a quality brand around it. It would have lasting power. You wouldn’t lie, calling a it a miracle when it isn’t. How many true MLM miracles have you seen? Let’s see, there was noni juice (cured every medical ill under the sun). The list is long. It’s all hype folks. Caveat emptor.

    • Jane Cappelletti says:

      I work with a direct sales company…with 2 dermatologists. We do not compare products..but saw a lot of people jumping on the bandwagon. The product does not work,, stinks,..and is not FDA approved nor are they a part of the DSA…all key points. Who is doing these pictures they are showing?..and are they approved by a outside source.

      The ingredients are poisonous…according to a friend of mine that works in my dermatology company. She is also a Master Gardner. Be aware. Customers are not re-ordering…they say it stinks…and dries out there face. I just ask customers to get the correct facts. And they are truly according to a inside source..not connected to the MD Anderson. Jumping in only for the money.. is not a good reason when you are not providing a quality product.

      • Kiren says:

        i think you need to do more research. Nerium is NOT poisonous due to the extraction method. i have 10 customers that are repeat clients and love the product.

        • drjohn says:

          The extraction method is documented in this patent application (the only patent that Nerium has applied for, according to a search of the USPTO system).

          Now, this patent documents that the active substance (a class of chemicals known as cardiac glycosides) can be extracted from the nerium plant with a aloe (e.g. aloe vera). It is touted as a better way to extract the glycosides from the plant because it requires less heat, etc. which means less is deactivated. But cardiac glycosides ARE the poisons that we talk about when we say that nerium oleander is poisonous. Or that it works against cancer.

          So, we ask you (or anyone) to provide any evidence that “Nerium is NOT poisonous due to the extraction method” because we cannot find it. The patent clearly provides no such reassurance.

          Now, we have seen studies suggesting that Nerium AD applied to skin is not absorbed into the body, and therefore is not delivering a poison to your blood stream or internal organs. We tend to believe those studies are correct, although it does make us curious that other glycosides that have been studied do penetrate skin. Of course it could also be that it is concentration dependent, as most things in physiology do work that way. So, if you put very little of the oleandrin into the product, not enough will get through the skin to be measurable in blood. Or add something that inhibits penetration.

          Whatever the reason it is not absorbed, please note once again that we are not trying to sound any alarm about Nerium AD being poisonous in the sense that the nerium oleander plant has been repeatedly linked to deaths throughout history (suicidal, homicidal, and accidental). Rather, our curiosity remains focused on skin itself, wanting to understand just how these chemicals (extensively studied at MD Anderson and shown to be cytotoxins, causing cell death via massive oxidative stress) can be therapeutic to cells. Can make skin look better (in the long term). Experimental data would be nice, but even a reasoned hypothesis from someone who truly understands skin biology would be highly welcome. We have made numerous overtures to obtain such information, but have thus far been ignored. And (as we also keep saying) our minds are open to new information and new ideas.

      • Nicolas Andreasson says:

        Dear Jane , you don’t need to be approved by FDA !!! Nobody told you to eat Nerium!!!
        They are poisonous if you eat it !!! You are just not for MLM , plus you are not a happy person eighter ! I recommend you read the ” Live Happy ” magazine which is owned by Jeff Olsen , it will help you !

        • Promisberg says:

          Nicolas drinkith from the cool aid?

          Peace brother!

        • Pixiestixs says:

          I am a health nut. I read the ingredients for everything I buy and use inside and outside my body. I live a completely natural and healthy life style With that said, Nerium ingredients are cheap and toxic.

  5. MPT says:

    Okay Wise Guise,

    I am so disappointed to find that you are both doctors, and self reported research doctors at that. You clearly did not do your homework before you posted such a slanderous blog about Nerium AD. And to top it off, you are both involved in a recently launched anti-aging skin care line, Cellese. Interesting bed fellow indeed! It makes me concerned about your motives in posting such a poorly investigated commentary.

    I am a newly inducted “Neriumite” and still a skeptic, but I have yet to find anything in my research about the company or the product to raise any red flags. I will state that it either is what it is claimed to be, or one hell of a hoax. I am also a healthcare professional, and have taken statistics and research methods as an undergraduate and a graduate student. I did manage to evade biochemistry, so I cannot provide an educated peer review of the research articles, but they are certainly available if you know where and how to find them.

    Since you seem to be having difficulty with your research and investigation, I will guide you in the right direction. Nerium Biotechnology is where you will find your science and your peer review articles. I am surprised that you would not have thought of that yourselves.

    If you would like to contact Dr. Newman, you might try requesting a consultation with him through the Nerium Biotech website, where he is presently the serves as lead researcher and scientific advisor to Nerium Biotechnology, Inc. From the sounds of your credentials you should have quite the intellectual conversation.

    A closing note on MLMs, they are clearly not for everybody. Neither is medical school.

    • drjohn says:

      It’s only slander if it’s not true. You seem shocked to discover that we are involved in skin care research and product development. But we disclose that at every turn, and it is all over this blog. Does the fact that we work in the same industry disqualify us from having opinions? Or from caring about the public? Do you mean to imply that we should be silent on abuses such as these? Can you think of anyone more qualified than we are to examine all this?

      If you read our commentary, you will know that we did research all this. We prefer your “one hell of a hoax” explanation as a little closer to reality.

      Yes, we did try to contact Dr. Newman. Spent many hours on the phone with various departments at M.D. Anderson. None of the people we talked to knew a thing about Nerium.

      Note: we edited this Neriumite’s note as it included a slew of the usual links to Nerium sites, including her own website, in case she convinced you that this was all real. No use passing that opportunity by. In fact, we had to retrieve this out of our SPAM e-mail. But I do agree with her closing comment. ...MLM’s are not for everybody.

    • says:

      Thank you! Nerium is a great product with true clinical trials and a business model that works. I have been in the Skincare Industry for 10 years and have never seen research and results like Nerium.

    • Down in Flames says:

      I’m going to help you out since you are new to Nerium: GET OUT WHILE YOU CAN.

      I am a former Brand Partner with Nerium and spent six months with the company. My career has been in sales and marketing and I am very successful at it, so one would think selling Nerium would be no big deal…Unfortunately, it is a terrible product backed by a terrible company.

      As far as anyone (including prospects) can tell, ST&T Research is a sham, and Nerium is their only client.

      All of Nerium’s marketing is cheesy, misleading BS, and it doesn’t work. As far as I can tell Nerium Inc. created the magazines: Beautiful You, and Live Happy. I don’t know what their involvement is with Success Magazine. I bought mountains of these things, flyers, and their tri-fold brochures, at great expense and handed them out to everyone. I literally put out about 1000 of their “3rd Party Marketing Tools, and got one Brand Partner, and two customers. In general, people thought the magazines, videos, emails, and teleconferences were laughable.

      In addition to the piss-poor marketing platform, Nerium is going to try and get you on 4-7 teleconferences per week, and wants you to attend multiple events, at a huge expense of your time. They will go over the same inane, feel-good nonsense, while giving you nothing concrete to build your business.

      If something happens, like you get a bad bottle or you want to cancel with Nerium, the support staff will be rude and ignore you.

      The marketing material is stupidly overpriced. For example I was paying $79 a month to receive 20 of their useless magazines as a Brand Partner. In addition to that you have to pay for your autodelivery which runs about $135, Nerium Edge which is a poor back-office solution for $30, not to mention all the gas going to the events.

      In a nutshell my wife and I lost about $3000 on this “opportunity”. In the process we annoyed and lost many of our friends who were smarter than us and stayed a million miles away from this thing.

      Lastly: THE PRODUCT DOESN’T WORK for most people! It didn’t work for us, our customers, or even our sole Brand Partner. I’m sure if you have never taken care of your skin, or you don’t use products anything will be better than nothing.

      It is very simple: If Nerium had a great product that actually worked and improved your skin 30%, it would be in Saks 5th Avenue, Barney’s, and Nordstroms. Not being peddled by cheesy MLM salespeople, stuck with pitches from 1982.

      I hope this helps some of you that are in Nerium or on the fence. I will never, EVER touch another MLM, Pyramid Scheme, or “Direct Sales” business as long as I live. Get out while you can.

  6. Dan Stern says:

    I got put under the “ether” of Nerium’s Brand partner by a friend. I opted in for $499 and received my “Success Kit” by Fed Ex. Upon examining the kit and product, I decided to send the kit back accepting that refunds were given at 90% of the initial cost. I sent the kit back UPS and received a $108 dollar refund. Upon contacting Nerium’s customer support department, I was told that when they received the package back there were no bottles of product in the box. Bullsh*t!
    A company is only as strong as their weakest link and this company blatantly ripped me off. I have sent a copy of the UPS shipping report which shows the weight of the returned box and am hopeful Nerium will step to the plate and do the right thing. They claim “Real People” as one of their mantras…. What kind of REAL PEOPLE treat people like this? Does anybody have any suggestions as to how I can recoup my loss?

    • CM says:

      I’m attending the Nerium conference in San Diego with my wife, a newly recruited brand partner. OMG the hype on this stuff is unbelievable! I’m showing this site to her, as I’m very concerned. As for the thousand or so white-faced clones here, I wish them luck. They’re going to need it when the bottom falls out. Perhaps a good analogy for this colossal flimflam is the failure of the fireworks display on Wednesday over the harbor near the Hyatt. Lots of dazzle, then poof!

    • LA says:

      Small claims court.

    • Jen says:

      I’m Just letting you know every credit card company has 6 months for your to file a chargeback so call up your credit card company explain the whole thing the company will have to give you a full refund by law

    • Olivia says:

      File a claim with the Better Business Bureau.

  7. Mom that was had! says:

    OK…1st…the person begged me to buy…and I did not. So, she asked for my address and she would mail me a sample. harm, no foul. The product arrived, and I was surprised to receive a full size. What she neglected to tell me was that after 5 days, she wanted it back. WHAT? I had thrown out the box, so I sent her a check for 96.00. But here is the cincher. The smell does not bother me. Smells like a plant. But what does bother me, is NO CHANGE…Nothing, nada, zip…. 96.00 down the drain. My age spots have not faded in the least. It just does nothing for me. SCAM MLM… I give it another year.

    • Oh no says:

      Oh no!!! I just asked a friend to send me a sample in the mail. She said “it will be a 5 day supply”… so you’re telling me that I’m going to receive a whole bottle and either have to send it back after 5 days or pay for it??? I am going to be so irritated. I hate these MLMs. I wanted to try a “free sample” so I could tell her the product was useless. If what you’re saying is what is going to happen I am going to lose it.

      • Emily Clark says:

        To Oh No-

        Yes, typically that’s how they market the bottle. They buy the kit with full size bottles and that’s supposed to last between 5 different people. Mr roommate however just got back from San Diego and apparently they may start doing 5 day sample packets for those that live farther away (which they have to buy, of course.)
        That part always seemed a bit strange to me though, sharing a bottle with random, unknown people.
        I’d say, chances are you’re going to have to send the bottle back.

        PS- STILL waiting on my refund,….

        • Dan Stern says:

          Best of luck in getting reimbursed after sending product back. Customer service department is rude and completely unprofessional…

          • Julie Burke says:

            Dan I agree with you, I have posted multiple complaints to their website and their facebook site . The feedback has either been ignored or deleted by their social media coordinator. Customer service is for the people who sell the product not those who purchase the product.

      • says:

        What did you receive? Probably what I received…a five day sample that was free of charge? Don’t post until you know.

        • Drgeorge says:

          Amber, you forgot to include the fact you are a Senior Brand Parner with Nerium International. It helps put your comment into the context it deserves. Funny, it seems all the positive comments BFT receives about Nerium are from brand partners; what a coincidence.

  8. John says:

    Yur readers should be advised that having “MD” after a name is no guarantee that the bearer is free of bias or inclined toward logical thinking. Some of the dumbest people I know are MDs. While they might know a great deal about very little their qualifications to comment on areas outside their field of expertise are no more valid than any others.

    Beware of docs with agendas.

  9. Louise says:

    Thank you for having this information available on the Nerium product. I am not a Brand Partner but am considering joining. I will take the time and check out the additional links. But, I must say for now that the majority of posts on your site may not be completely true and/or the person who gave them the product did not show them how to use it properly. I am a little concerned about the return policy, although, I do have the return form and if I sell the product I will be certain to follow their procedures on returns. Sometimes the product is only as good as the person who is selling it. I think that might be the case. I so appreciate the information and I will be diligent in following up on all the additional information you have provided before I join. Also, it is my understanding that Nerium does not want you to sell any product you have – they only want you to give it to the person and have them try it for free for 5 days and then return the bottle back to you. Not everyone’s skin will respond the same way and they realize that. Also, it is critical that the face is thoroughly cleansed and has to be wet when you apply the product to activate it. If these people are putting it on a dry face then nothing is going to happen. I also noticed in all those posts that no one complained of the tightening feeling which confirms to me that they probably did not use it correctly.

    I agree that when you google “Nerium” – it is really thick with Brand Partners acting like they are giving you non-bias information. I am hopeful that the product works and I know it is not all hype. When I went to their 1 1/2 hr. meeting last week (all fluff – no facts) they did show us actual before and after photos of people who have been using the product for the last couple of months and these people were actually in the room with us.

    Myself and 2 neighbors are trying out the product for the next 5 to 7 days our ages are 53, 56 and 65 – (with different skin types and aging issues) If you are interested I will let you know if we see any remarkable differences in our before and after photos. I personally have used the product for 2 days now and I did notice than my skin is much smoother and tighter and some of my wrinkles are softer. I am encouraged by my results so far. On the other hand you do raise concerns whether or not I could actually be damaging my skin cells with the product.

    Please keep us updated if you are able to find any additional scientific based information on this product.

    • drjohn says:

      One problem with MLM schemes is that you end up with a blizzard of information, most of which is specious and unreliable. Data fog. The internet, coupled with incentives for every user to make money just compounds this. In the end they always collapse under their own weight. We are convinced that chronic immune stimulation in the skin is ultimately pro-aging not anti-aging. Short term puffing up hides the wrinkles, but long term dermal scarring and loss of matrix.

  10. Janelle James says:

    I can only give you my own experience with Nerium. I tried the product and was very pleased with the results. Everyone was asking me what I was doing to my skin. I always share things I like with others, so I decided, “Why not now.” I have a very successful career and I didn’t need the money. My very smart, business minded husband looked at the company in depth and was incredibly impressed with the 50% compensation plan. He also was amazed at what the product was doing for his skin. We signed up to be a brand partner and got our bottles in the mail. We thought people would like the product as much as we do, but were not prepared for the incredible response to the product. We have shared the product with a few people and almost everyone calls us a few days later gushing. The before and after pictures they keep sending are incredible. They are sharing it with their friends and so on. In 27 days we have earned an iPad, a lexus bonus, and a nice commission check. My 19 year old daughter loves Nerium as it has cleared up her complexion. She is sharing it with all her friends and they are all loving it too. My daughter just earned an iPad after only two weeks of sharing the product with her friends. My 77 year old mother loves it and all her fiends do too. Everyone is happy. I don’t see any losers here.

    I’m sorry to hear about the hassles with returning the product. Not to make excuses, but this is a company on hyper grown and I’m sure it is hard to keep up. I’ve had nothing but positive experiences with customer service so far. But no company is perfect, so I won’t be surprised if once in awhile we hit a glitch.

    And to the one commenter who stated that someone sent her a bottle and expected her to ship it back after 5 days. My word. That is ridiculous. I would never do that to anybody. I’m sorry that happened. I would never pressure my friends to buy. I give them the product and say if they like it, let me know. So far I haven’t had anybody say they didn’t like it.

    It sounds like you have been misinformed about MD Anderson. What I was told about the MD Anderson connection is that Dr Robert Newman (He is a real man. I saw him with my own eyes) was a researcher at MD Anderson for 24 years when he was doing research on the Nerium oleander. He realized the test patients were ending up with great skin. He formed Nerium Biotechnology with a lot of top notch men. They went into business with Jeff Olsen to create Nerium AD and distribute the product. 30% of the profits of the company go back to Nerium biotechnology for further research.

    I don’t know what skin care company you are a part of, but I’m sure it is good. Nerium is good stuff too, so I wonder why all the hostility. I noticed one commenter said she wanted to try the sample so she could say she didn’t like it. If that is the attitude, then I’m not surprised if she won’t like it. Some people like chocolate ice cream and some don’t. People are entitled to their opinions. I like the smell of the Nerium…it smells like cucumbers to me. But i’m not surprised some people don’t like the smell. My husband doesn’t like most the perfume I like. That doesn’t mean he is right and I am wrong. He is stupid and I need to inform him.

    I’m not sure why you are so negative about Nerium or direct marketing, and why all the hostility, but all I can say is I like Nerium. I am impressed with the product and the company. My two cents.

    • drjohn says:

      Yes, Robert Newman is a real guy and used to work at MD Anderson, as a cancer researcher (nothing to do with skin). That doesn’t mean MD Anderson endorses the product, which the multitudinous advertisements imply. In fact if you call MD Anderson they deny knowledge and responsibility.

      One doesn’t have to dislike Nerium or it’s people to dislike multilevel marketing. There is abundant information out there about how it works, how it eventually collapses and hurts those at the bottom of the pyramid.

      If the product were as good as you say it is — why would you need MLM anyway? Wouldn’t it sell just as well through through legitimate channels that don’t end up doing this kind of evil?

      We also have problems with the science. It;s one thing to say “it works because I like it”. It’s another to offer a clear, coherent hypothesis of mechanism of action along with solid experimental evidence. This one really makes no sense at all scientifically, at least for long term use.

      Now you might say “I don’t care what the science says” in which case we want to quote you, in the context of your contemplating your husband’s response to your perfume – “That doesn’t mean he is right and I am wrong. He is stupid and I need to inform him. ” That’s kinda how we think we should approach this.

      • Honolulu Aunty says:


        I am glad to have found your contrary stance. I guess you can call me a Neriumite since I am a distributor of Nerium and doing quite well in a very short period of time. So far, it has been a great company with a great unique product.

        Blogs such as yours are very good because your concerns are the concerns of many. It helps anyone to see the “dark and evil” side and make their own decisions on whether or not to join in a venture. My son does the “dark and evil” for me all the time, and most of the time he is right, but not always.

        Regarding Nerium – I have good results from the product and am doing well building a team of distributors by helping them build and advance. The CEO, Jeff Olsen is putting out his best last hurrah in this MLM (of which he is highly regarded). He did a presentation called “”. The company is so new, there isn’t any saturation point (unlike Amway for example), which is a great point for business building with others looking for another source of income. This was actually the initial reason why I joined.

        I am also a distributor (but not very successful) in another MLM called LifeVantage. Here is an example of another really great product (Protandim) but the company is run by top heavy self serving officers with company policies that often change to the detriment of our business building. Being a publicly traded company also doesn’t help us soldiers in the ranks since it seems to me that their job is pleasing their Board of Directors and watching out for their own pockets. They don’t seem to care about what we think.

        Will Nerium become like that? Maybe, maybe not. For now, it is one of the newest kids on the block with the shiniest ball and the best game plan I have ever come across. If anything, the flaw could be in how generous their compensation and bonuses are. The bonuses do have program end dates to qualify so they have been well thought out and act as great incentives for the initial phases of promotion.

        Mahalo for sharing your prospective. Polarity makes the world go round.


        • drjohn says:

          Aunty, we are with your son on this. There are better ways. .(we removed aunty’s downstream distributor recruitment link).

          • Honolulu Aunty says:


            Did I include my distributor site in the original comment? Apologies if I did since it was not my intent to have people sign up – I just wanted to comment as a Neriumite and thank you for allowing a different point of view, just as I found your point of view interesting.

            The website that I filled in on your form is my “old lady” blog site that my son helped set up for me 2 years ago. It started off as an info site about the workshops and books that I have learned from about investing, life, etc. The home page is about me, a couple of posts are about Nerium, and the rest of the 100+ pages are about recipes, real estate, saving, things to do in Hawaii, etc.

            It is also my secret wish that one day my brilliant son will take the time to read the ramblings of his mom who he thinks is a bit of a fruitcake.

            Mahalo for your thoughts, appreciate your response,


          • drjohn says:

            Aunty – You seem like such a delightful and multi-faceted woman. Nerium is very attractive to anyone interested in personal finance. But MLM’s do not have a stellar history, especially for older folks on fixed incomes. In fact it anything bothers me about them, it is the way they appeal to the most vulnerable amongst us, and potentially put them at financial risk. With uncle’s permission, may I offer you a mahalo hug? Stay well.

        • Shelley says:

          Thank you, Auntie! I love this product! Love the opportunity! Watching myself and friends benefit first of all from the product then watching our bank accounts explode! It isn’t for everyone! And believe me we don’t want everyone as business partners! Anything new and exciting is scrutinized to death! As it should be! Bring it! The naysayers are welcome! I have done my homework on the company and the science and am thrilled no end to be at the beginning of a fantastic life changing opportunity.

          • Drgeorge says:

            Shelly, you say you did your homework about the company and the science. Maybe you can tell us how this stuff works; no one else seems to be willing to say a word. We’re all ears….

            (I am glad your life is changing. Was there any Kool-Aid involved?)

          • skinaddict says:

            The “naysayers” are not welcome! Ask or even challenge a point with them and they delete your post in 5 seconds or less!! If it was so wonderful and great why can’t they answer simple questions?

          • drjohn says:

            That’s a really good question. Anybody want to guess the answer?

      • Tina says:

        I am currently a Brand Partner with this company and am not happy with the fact that they are always hyping the “success stories” but they ALWAYS dodge any questions from us!! I have even tried asking about the safety of the Nerium AD to my upline (the person who is supposedly supposed to be helping me “share” the product) only to be told that “we are not here to answer questions and that if the person is a doubter, we don’t need them, and we move on” I am so frustrated and feel so betrayed! I have been a brand partner since the beginning of the year, and have several customers, but have yet to find anyone willing to try to sell/share the product. And I must say, that even though I am a brand partner, I have not seen any visible results in my skin’s appearance at all – after about 4 months of usage. I love how the cream smells, and how it makes my skin feel, but since my questions have come up about the safety of the product’s oleander ingredient, and because of the fact that NO ONE is willing to answer any of my questions regarding this safety issue, I have stopped using it, and am ready to tell my customers to also stop using and ordering it as well. The issue that brought up my red flag big time was that they just launched an “international campaign” starting with Canada. And they created this whole new cream “OPTIMERA” to market internationally – with NO NERIUM OLEANDER in it what so ever! In fact they have supposedly “discovered” a new plant extract that they use in this international product that Canadians can now order… and here in the US, we are NOT ALLOWED to even order this new Optimera product. My question was, if the company was so successful with NERIUM AD, why did they completely have to change the formulation of the cream in order to get it “approved” for international marketing? I have a feeling it is because the other countries are more strict in what they allow in their products, and when they found out the the oleander was a cardiac toxin, they wouldn’t allow it – so Nerium took it completely out of their cream and replaced it. But I have asked and asked and asked and asked on the Nerium facebook page, only to keep getting quotes from the Nerium blog – which don’t even pertain to my question about the safety of Nerium Oleander!! I am so frustrated and honestly am considering getting out – but the problem is that I have several customers who love the product and want to continue using it, so I don’t want to let them down… I just can’t believe that these people can directly lie to us about the safety of their product, and not feel guilty! How can they sleep at night? It blows my mind!!

        Thank you for all that you do here – I absolutely LOVE the depth of your research, your honesty, and your willingness to interact with the people who read and follow your site! Thank you for everything and God bless!

        • drjohn says:

          Tina, thank you for your kind comments. We have been hearing from a number of people about Nerium’s international strategy and the remarkable new discovery leading Nerium to dump oleander extract (“lightning strikes twice”). My guess is that before long (perhaps when current stocks of Nerium AD are depleted) they will announce with great fanfare that Optimera is just so good they should sell it everywhere and dump Nerium Oleander. Not that it is harmful or anything. Oh, no, never. But that second lightning strike was even better, that’s all. But, as you and others are noting, the whole thing just stretches credulity even further. Why believe anything they say?

          • Tina says:

            You are so right, Dr. John! They have totally lost all credibility as far as I’m concerned. What I am flabbergasted about is the fact that there are so many people willing to continue to “share” their products with loved ones, knowing first hand how deceptive the company is, and how unsafe their products are! AND how many people just choose to blindly follow this company’s “proven system” of sharing the product and using third party tools to sell their products! Being a health care professional, I guess I am more in tuned to the health care aspect of things, but honestly, are the marketers really only concerned about making money – at the expense of their loved ones’ safety and well being? How can they sleep at night? I sadly must say that I agree with some of the above posts – that this is a cult-like following… I am still shaking my head in disbelief that the over 14,000 people at the St. Louis Conference a couple of weeks ago cheered and celebrated and didn’t even give it a second thought as to WHY the Nerium AD (with oleander) was going international with a NEW product, Optimera, which has NO nerium in it at all?! NOT ONE of those 14,000 people questioned that? Am I the only one?? And regardless of my many posts, emails, calls, NOT ONE person from Nerium International has even attempted to answer my question, except to say that they had to “reformulate” it to “meet all international guidelines” and absolutely NO comment from them about my question of “why won’t the other countries approve oleander?” and that makes it loud and clear that they don’t want us to know. Even some brand partners tried to answer for Nerium International, telling me that I needed to go to the Canadian government and ask them that question, not Nerium International!! Even more evidence of the cult like nature of this company’s followers… which I am NOT proud to be a part of at this point…
            Anyways, sorry to write such long replies!! Thank you for allowing the interaction, for your prompt replies, and for all that you do to try to help us make the most informed choices!! You guys are the best and I wish you a very successful, happy, and prosperous future!! :-)

        • Emma says:

          Hi, My names Emma, just here researching. Not a distributor. Not a user. But was looking at using it. I wanted to comment on something you said Tina. You said “the fact that there are so many people willing to continue to “share” their products with loved ones, knowing first hand how deceptive the company is, and how unsafe their products are!”
          What makes you say that NeriumAD is unsafe? Has there been illnesses reported? sickness? death from using the product? (I know that Oleander in itself is unsafe, but sometimes a componant of something can be extracted without the poisonous part being in it. Most companies, that are trying to patent their product are pretty secretive about the process that makes their product effective). Also, it is very interesting to me that they are releasing another product without the Oleander Extract. Is it comparable to this product? For anti-aging? Could it be possible that the other ingredients in it Nerium are as effective without the Oleander extract? Maybe that’s why it’s considered safe (because there’s only a small amount of the extract in it?). What is the first 3 ingredients? What’s the main active ingredient? I wouldn’t worry to much about “why” another country wouldn’t “approve” of an ingredient yet. There are ALOT of laws surrounding “new” ideas, esp. in the medical industries, that the current “establishment” doesn’t “approve” (sometimes that’s a good thing and sometimes it’s a terrible hinderance to growth). (See Burzynski, cure for cancer, the movie on youtube as an example). My thoughts is, if this product is being used, without side effects, and you said you have reaccuring “customers” who “LOVE” it…then ??? :)

          • drjohn says:

            Well, then you have a heap of splainin’ to do. Start with this- how is it that the ingredient they base all their genesis story on, and much of their advertising, and even the product and company name, a substance known to be “massively oxidizing” to cells and to cause cell death … CAN THAT BE A GOOD THING FOR SKIN??? Are you saying that’s a bunch of hooey, and that other ingredients are good (like maybe the 20 cents worth of aloe vera?). If that’s the case, why does the company persist in this prevarication? Would you trust a company who made up a wild story in order to keep secret why it really workS? If what we have heard from former “brand partners” is true, then the company may have a very high “churn” rate – the opposite of customer retention & loyalty.

  11. Louise says:

    Question: What about those third party independent clinical trials Nerium did? From what I have seen on the various Nerium websites, they were the most comprensive trials to date for any cosmetic product. According to the Nerium brochure they enlisted ST&T Research using the most advanced facial scanning equipment, etc. and the result were impressive. I would imagine that would count as scientific research as to the effectiveness of the product.

    • drjohn says:

      What??? The most comprensive trials to date for any cosmetic product? Did they say that, or is that your conclusion? This is not independent research, this is paid sponsored research. Generally speaking, when you pay for research, you pay for results. Everybody knows it, its not even an insider industry secret. Nothing against the ST&T people. It’s just the way it works. An independent study is when an uninterested third party spends the bucks to investigate. Maybe a university scientist. If anybody really believes this works, why can’t anyone tell me why it works? Why would a cell poison improve skin, and diminish (rather than accelerate) aging? This far, no hypothesis that lines up with known cell biology has come forth. Would be very glad to review again when it does. Heck, maybe we do some 3rd party independent research ourselves in that case. Meanwhile, it’s in the “doesn’t add up” logically category. Oh, and then there is that other fly in the ointment question … if it did add up, and did work, why would you need MLM to sell it? Every scientist I know who has an ounce of altruism & compassion for his fellow man knows that MLM hurts people in the end. Look at history! Learn from it.

      Louise: with your permission, lets talk. I’ll send you and e-mail with an invitation to chat with Dr. George and myself. If you still want to be in the Nerium pyramid after that, fine. But let’s bang this around together first, OK?

      • d says:

        in your own terms, “why would a cell poison improve skin”?
        why would you use snake poison as antidote for snake bites?
        why would you get flu shots to protect from flu?

        why? why? why?
        don’t ask why, instead of asking just find it for yourself and let us all know

        • Drgeorge says:

          The mechanisms of action whereby anti-venom and flu vaccine are beneficial are well known. Not so for “improved” skin from oleandrin .Sorry, but the responsibility for offering the explanation lies with Nerium International and no one else. You are aware that MD Anderson has already disavowed any involvement in this company or its product.

          • d says:

            “mechanisms of action whereby anti-venom and flu vaccine are beneficial are well known”.
            True in part. but I still get sick when I get a flu shot (something personal).

            But when it first started nobody believed in it. And I can bet you anything that most of the people dont know about the mechanisms of how the anti-venom and flu vaccine works, and still most believe in it.

            Please enlighten me.


        • drjohn says:

          Snakebite treatment is not snake venom, it is anti-venom. You give people snake venom, you kill them. Anti-venom is created by giving snake venom in small doses to animals over time to cause them build up antibodies against it. These antibodies are harvested from the animal, and they become the treatment. The anti-venom. It is much the same with flu shots. You first create antibodies against the viral strains. Nowadays, they are created in bioreactors by genetically programmed bacteria.

          So, of course, neither of these examples speaks in any way to how a proven cytotoxin would do good things for skin. Unless you gave it to animals first, and used the antibodies instead of the antigen, or cytotoxin, to make the product. But then it wouldn’t be nerium, would it? It would be anti-nerium. Antibodies against nerium oleander. But hey, maybe that’s a pretty good idea. I do like that term “anti-nerium” or just plain “antinerium”. Could be a bit hit!

          P.S. we do keep asking why, and nobody has yet responded. We have had Nerium BP’s ask the same questions of Nerium customer support, and they get ignored too. You try it – you will also be ignored. Because there is no good answer?

          • d says:

            this is totally out of subject, but you do guys ever sleep? or are all these answers automated?
            I post a question and you guys reply in matters of few minutes.
            This is GREAT customer service.
            I like it!!

          • drjohn says:

            We are a humble nonprofit blog. Our volunteers only spend a few minutes a day at this, in batches, so you must have gotten lucky. We do have bots, but they only sort the mail (we get lots of spam, naughty language, etc.).

          • d says:

            What happened to the GREAT customer service

          • drjohn says:

            See above.

          • d says:

            back to the point.
            your last reply is somehow mediocre. I feel offended.
            your answer was common sense. but not in the case of the anti venom.
            you dont slowly give small doses of snake venom to a person who was just bitten by a snake. if you do that you will kill him!

          • Drgeorge says:

            Dr. John described above that anti-venom is produced in animals (usually horses as they have lots of blood from which to harvest antibodies) by giving incrementally larger doses of snake venom to induce an antibody response that “neutralizes” the venom by combining with it to create a harmless anitgen/antibody complex. You can learn more at:

            Flu vaccine actually gives the recipient a “mini-case” of the flu with a strain anticipated to be similar or identical to the “wild” strain or strains expected to predominate that year. Your own body responds by creating an antibody defense that when exposed to the real flu virus can cope with it to prevent the flu or amerliorate its severity. Some people get minor flu-like symptoms as their body responds to the vaccine. Read more at:

  12. Louise says:

    Dr. John & Dr. George, Thank you for the personal email, as you know I have provided you with my phone number to talk further if you wish. I think at this point to further your research into the Evil’s of Nerium you should become a brand partner and then you will have access to more information. I do not have the expertise and experience that you have to counteract the information supplied by Nerium. It all seems quite legitimate to me from the two weeks worth of research I have done. To answer your question why did Nerium choose a MLM format? The answer to that according to the Nerium ligature I have read, is that they wanted to find the fastest and most efficient way with the lowest cost to the consumer. They decided it would be through a MLM. That’s not a direct quote; I read it on their website a few days ago. I’m serious, I really think it would behoove you to pay the $99.95 for the start-up kit and the $80.00 – S&H for a one month supply of the product and try it for yourselves. This way you will have hands on the sales tools, clinical information, ingredients, DVD’s, CD’s, brochures as well as the product to try…. there was much more ot this obvious sales pitch we edited out…

  13. Suzanne says:

    They’ve got lots of publications on nerium listed but they all deal with skin cancer treatment, not skin aging. Completely different. The ONE report I saw from S & T would not be usable in academic research because it doesn’t articulate methodology, doesn’t document baselines, has a subject group of only 34 participants, has no control group (they needed to have an equal number of participants use the base cream but without the active ingredient in order to compare the difference), and primarily uses self reported data from a questionnaire. The skin analysis that they document is a joke. I can see lined on the subject’s face that are not even being flagged by their program, and in the final 28 day photos the subject is clearly wearing makeup, and may have had some ‘work’ done because her lips appear to have been augmented. We don’t know, though, because the ‘study’ lacks any detail whatsoever.

    • drjohn says:

      Excellent critque, Suzanne. You should write for barefacedtruth :)

    • Craig says:

      Suzanne, that report used in the marketing is the last report of about 6 years of studies. It is a valid criticism that software based identification can’t be 100% perfect. i’ve written scientific software for my own work, I would be very surprised by a machine that was perfect. There have been control groups, creme without the extract. Is report the same as what you would find in a journal article, no. Where do you get the idea that the questionnaire data (and the entry and exit interviews) is the primary source ? That’s not what I’ve seen. The face is thoroughly cleaned and allowed to dry for 10 minutes before measurements are taken.

  14. Maria says:

    Dr John. I’m glad you posted this, because I too have been trying to find the negative reviews in this product and really you have to search deep to find any bad reviews, but I am a google addict so I sure did find them.

    I too was trying to get suckered into becoming a “brand partner” being told “it sells itself” and yadi yadi yada but luckily for me I wanted to actually try the product for myself before I took the plunge, which I think many people dont even try it and with all the rave reviews and before and after pics of other people it’s easy to endorse a product without ever trying it for yourself.

    So I have been battling acne sInce I was a teen and now into adulthood. My skin finally cleared up with the use of salicylate acid cleanser and epiduo (amazing product by dr.s and scientists not trying to recruit you!) my skin was looking amazing and for once in my life I felt normal and not ashamed, and this went on for about 3 months, I heard about nerium ad from a friend and decided to give it a go. I tried it for 1 day and the next morning holy Jesus! My skin was absolutely disgusting! I had I kid you not 6 new pimples pop up! And they weren’t small! By day 2 even worse! My skin was red and 4 new ones popped up including cysts. I was so depressed and miserable.

    I know people say you have to give your skin time to adjust to the product. But here’s my question, why is it the 1st time I used my old skin care regimen (salicylic acid cleanser, aloe vera toner, oil of olay moisturizer, end off with epiduo on my problematic areas) I instantly saw progress it was scary! Everybody said to stick it out but I said screw that! So my face can get more covered in acne?! I really regret using this product!

    Nerium ad totally ruined my skin just in a matter of 2 days!!! My once clear skin is now bombarded with acne and bringing up horrible memories.

    I really feel now like this product for me is a evil acne devil in a bottle. Just my opinions and experiences so nerium worshipers don’t go crazy on me.

  15. Alexandra says:

    The part – “Smells like a combination of ball-sweat and earwax. With minimal results, Nerium AD was not for me” is not the whole story. Lovely job in summarizing it to your favor.

    If you read through the blog, the person ends with “But if it works, it’s worth it, right? I’m impressed with Nerium AD, but I’m not ready to use it as needed yet. Maybe in 10 years… ” EMPHASIS ON “I’M IMPRESSED WITH NERIUM AD…” Try not delete this comment, as my previous one to the effect was deleted. Tell people the whole truth.

    • drjohn says:

      Hi Alexandra, we have seen quite a number of “bait-and-switch” (B&S) web sites our there for Nerium. They start with bait, like a title “Is Nerium a Scam?” At the top of the page thet will discuss the negative view. But at the bottom there is always a switch like “but wait, despite all that it really works”. We are told by people with knowledge about these things that it is a way to fool Google searches. For instance, a lot of people search on the words nerium + scam (for obvious reasons). Many of them end up on such B&S sites. The more you have out there, the more it populates the result of any Google search. So, apparently this is all part of their digital marketing strategy. The company itself is creating these sites in order to crate a “digital fog” to mask criticism of Nerium as a product and a business. It’s actually very clever strategy, and also very self-serving as it robs people of the ability to seek the truth. It’s a sophisticated propaganda technique that actually silences the voice of critics.

      In short, it is one of the most Machiavellian strategies we have ever heard of in the skin care business. And this is not a very wholesome business to start with For all of you who believe they want to be in business with MLM’ers , we ask you to look at their tactics, and then examine your own motives. Do not sear your conscience for the sake of a buck.

      • Matthew says:

        The B&S tactic is the same for almost all MLM companies. I have direct involvement (not distributor) with many MLM companies and I find the research to be almost impossible. Which is why this site is a great find. Hopefully your rankings on Google for Nerium AD will increase.

  16. die-skin-poison-die says:

    I have just been begged by my best friend (a Nerium Brand Partner)… “you gotta join” Ha! She says she’s a skeptic but she also bought a $5000 “surface cleaner” and falls for other MLM company B***S*** I’m looking at their bottles of product wondering why the heck they think 1 ounce of “natural” product should be worth $110 retail?! Are you kidding me? I’m so irritated that my best friend was scooped up in the gigantic Pooper Scooper that Nerium is. I find myself ignoring her calls so I don’t have to hear another sales pitch. Good luck getting your New Car and Ipad and don’t let the door hit you in the a$$ on your way outta here.

  17. Ahn says:

    Thanks so much for posting this. It was very difficult to find any real reviews on this product. I’m an esthetician and own a skin care salon. I love trying new stuff! Anyway, I signed up w/ Nerium about a month ago, bought the Success Pack eagerly after I had tried the product for 5 days (I did notice that my skin was tighter). However, after using it for 2 weeks I began having terrible, terrible pustulous acne. Obviously I stopped using the product. So I decided to “test” the product on others. 2 estheticians from my staff (30 & 40 YO), and 2 clients (40 & 60 YO). They all took before and after pictures for 2 weeks. And guess what? No improvement whatsoever. In fact, 2 complained that it made their hyperpigmentation darker. It turned out to be just snake oil after all. I just began the “return” process. Hopefully it will be fairly easy.

    • Pcaskinaddict says:

      I got suckered in also but on the $1000 package! (my fault for not googling first) How did returning it go for you?

  18. Bob says:

    I been on this product for 3 weeks now. I tried it because after seeing pictures and hearing testimonials about it helping with sun damage skin. I still see no difference at all. I also have adult acne and this stuff seemed to have made my acne worse. my discolored skin is still there which it states it helps discolored skin. I also notice that my skin is dryer throughout the day after rinsing off this mask, I thinks people are just falling foolishly for a cheap product that is sold at a high cost. This is Crazy. I feel this is just a really big scam. Those Poison lotion distributors should get out before they get suid for damaging someones health. How long before I start seeing results? I’m not gonna spend another $80 and I’m cancelling this snake oil. The owners should be ashamed for scamming people and arrested!

  19. Dan Stern says:

    An update here… If you have seen my earlier post here, I wanted to let the readers know that Nerium refused to refund the money I had coming to me after I sent their product back. I finally had to file a fraud claim with my credit card company against Nerium. It took a month to get through the maze, but in the end Visa ruled against Nerium and I got my full refund…including the 10% restock fee. If anyone else has had or is currently having a problem with this scam company, you might wish to contact your credit card company and file a fraud claim.

  20. Drgeorge says:

    The fraud aspect of this pertains, in BFT’s opinion, more to the fact that refunds are promised and not honored. This in no way negates the fact that grandiose promises are made for a product that has a mysterious and as yet undocumented mechanism of action that is not plausibly consistent with the known effects of oleandrin causing cellular damage.

    To our knowledge, there has also been no active identified from the nerium oleander plant other than oleandrin, which is a known cytotoxin. Nerium has certainly not provided any information in that regard of which BFT is aware. While the product claims may also have an aspect one might call “fraudulent”, that is more a matter of opinion than fact right now. The issue of promising refunds and then refusing to do so is a much clearer case.

    • A flower says:

      This site is so intersting. i too really wish I had found it prior to trying the product.
      I tried it as a favor for a friend several months ago back in the spring . I had no initial adverse reaction but no positive results either. After inadvertently enrolling in the monthly shipments, I quickly realized I would never use the product up at a bottle a month. I called left a message with customer service to cancel, it never happened. Another month passed vacation came and went. Before I knew it I had three bottles of this snake oil. I immedeiately called and canceled the direct shipment, customer service was less then pleasesd snd a tually baraded me with questins why i wanted to camcel it.
      Here is the fly in the snake ontment, Approximately a month after beginning, I noticed my eyes had swollen with what seemed like bug bites at the time. Fast forward 8 weeks and three more incidence of swollen eyes we concluded the nerium was the cause of the adverse reaction.
      I immediately contacted customer service and was told it was not their problem. The had a 30 day money back guarantee. I was beyond the thirty days, even though I had only purchased a bottle by direct shipment less then thirty days prior. My enrollment was in the spring beyond the birth days.
      I want to understand a company that doesnt ask for a code date to track the quality of a product when an adverse skin reaction is reported ? They’re happy to offer big compensation, iPads, le us to their ” brand partners” that peddle this stuff, but they won’t refund even 100 dollars for a bottle of product. Initially all I sought was a refund for the most recent purchase, but I quickly became irate at their “not my problem” approach, and wanted all my money back for the product I had a reaction to.
      I informed them I was filing a claim with the FDA. I filed a claims on their Facebook site and they quickly deleted it and block me from future posts. I have heard from customer service and they claimed I would see a full refund on my credit card and they would provide a shipping form for the product to e sent back at their expense. I am skeptical after reading this site that I will see either of these.
      As a scientist, I am ashamed of myself because I didn’t do any due diligence and investigate before I got suck in as a favor to a friend . Like others who have posted, I have had a bad experience and will NEVER purchase anything from a MLM company again. I’ll stick with established consumer product/cosmetic companies, that have actual ethics and stand behind the quality of their products.

  21. Michael says:

    Wow! I can’t believe the comments, I’m 17 and within a week I noticed, serious changes in my acne and scars,
    I found this products amazing, this is legit!

    • drjohn says:

      If it significantly resurfaced scars in a week, that would indeed be amazing. And cured acne, especially since it doesn’t contain any anti-acne ingredients. Others tell us it makes acne worse. Are you sure you are not hawking this at your high school during lunch break?

    • KMoreno says:

      I hope people trying to make up their minds about NeriumAD or the Nerium International Business will do some real due diligence, and not just take others opinions here as fact. Try yourwebsitehasbeendeleted or theirwebsitehasbeendeleted

      We are not here to provide links to Nerium BP websites. As we keep saying, but maybe some people think we are mere robots. Besides just google on “nerium” to get a bizillion of them. Oh, and yes, you have to compete with all of them after you pay to be a BP. Good luck with that. More sellers than buyers? What happens when you run of of sellers who buy?

    • Tara says:

      Its hard to imagine Michael that packing your skin daily with a product that has the consistency and hand of carwax could actually clear vs. exacerbate your acne. It’s highly probable that the appearance of a reduction in scars is an illusion from irritating ingredients that plump surrounding skin. I would love to see some before/after pic’s but those with static lighting conditions and consistent facial expressions unlike the hundreds posted on facebook that are clearly not authentic depictions or unaltered.

  22. damage control says:

    I was approached by a friend to look into Nerium. He signed up through his mom! The truth on “Lie #6″ was the most close to home. It damages our social foundation and I have lost a lot of respect for my friend.

    He was an extremely intelligent person, who happens to be stuck in a tough spot financially. Nerium has him sold on the idea that this is his future and career. I have a hard time staying on the phone with him because his mind is so far blown.

    Just one question, I thought I read somewhere that 70% of the income/sales of a MLM company have to be from their products. How is Nerium getting away with this? I thought they most make their money by charging people $500 or $1000 to sign up.

    • drjohn says:

      You mean MLM limits under U.S. regulations? They are ways around that. For instance, Nerium International is not as U.S. corporation, it is a Canadian corporation. They do have to file 10K’s in the US though, and it is an interesting read indeed.

      • Carolyn says:

        That referrence on not being a US Corporation is referring to Nerium Biotech, not Nerium Intl.

        • drjohn says:

          Nerium International and Nerium SkinCare™, Inc.are both subsidiaries of Nerium Biotechnology, Inc. a Canadian entity. Now how did American as apple pie Jeff whats-his-name, and Dr. Nate Newman (of MD Anderson fame), end up in bed with my fellow Canucks? There has got to be a reason. I want to know it.

          • KMoreno says:

            Nerium Skincare is a wholly owned subsidiary of Nerium Biotech. Nerium International is not.


  23. josie says:

    I recently became a brand partner and it cost me $1080. I am having a Nerium “party” tomorrow evening. I am very nervous about my investment and will probably send it all back before my 30 days is up. But I must say this… you keep talking about Nerium being poison and you say it should have adverse effects on the skin, not positive effects. But what about Botox? People are injecting BOTULISM into their bodies and having amazing results. Even if the results are temporary, it really does improve the appearance of the skin! I have used Nerium for 4 nights. It smells bad, but I can tolerate it if it helps with my fine lines and wrinkles. I am 47 years old, my skin is pretty decent, but the skin on my neck has lost elasticity. Nerium has made my skin feel tighter and I love the way it feels once it has absorbed in. If all the statistics on MLM’s failure are correct, then I have no choice but to bail because I won’t beg my friends to invest a ton of money in this product. Please give me your opinion on Botox poison.

    Thank you, Josie

    • drjohn says:

      josie, Botox is a poison only in the sense that it paralyzes muscles. If it gets to your muscles of respiration it could kill you. But injected only into the muscles of your forehead, it temporarily paralyzes muscles that form wrinkles. It doesn’t affect skin cells, only the nerves that control the muscles. There is no cellular metabolic effect, no inflammation. From that viewpoint it is rather benign. Now contrast this with substances that are known irritants to cells, that work inside cells to kill some of them off. They inflame cells, calling up the immune system, which puffs up skin and hides wrinkles. But in the long term (months and years) this inflammation is not “anti-aging” it is in fact “pro-aging”. Certainly things like elasticity will be lost faster. We know all this from ,models of inflamed skin. Now, we haven’t tested Nerium to know this – we only go on the published literature they have about the mechanism of action. It was developed to kill cancer cells. They have yet to tell us how this is good for wrinkles, in the long term, given what we now know about “inflammaging”.

      It seems odd to me that you would have to spend $1800 in order to be eligible to sell product which benefits the company. For instance in our company, independent product reps don’t have to spend any money at all. We give them product, support them with web sites and training and printed materials, all at no cost to them. We don’t force our people into hard choices like sell to your friends (at their risk) or forego your own income. As a result of this, we are a much smaller company than Nerium. That’s OK by us. Good luck in your business. We truly hope it works out for you.

      • Michelle says:

        You seem to have changed his figure. He said $1080.00 you almost doubled it in your response. it’s called a typo.
        BTW he choose the most expensive option to become a Brand Partner, he could have choosen the 99.00 option. What was his maximum retun with that investment?

  24. Beth says:

    These are the companies that give all legitimate direct sales companies a bad name. They are predatory in their recruiting practices and not members of the DSA.
    They have very slick materials touting the benefits of “leaders” with experience. Yes: experience with companies that have gone under! … Thank you for posting this. I hope more people considering this “business” will find it and realize it is a company built upon sand about to take a direct hit from a hurricane.

  25. damage control says:

    just wish this site popped up first in google’s search engine. i can’t even remember how i found this site, but i hope more people see it.

    • drjohn says:

      If you have lots of money to spend you can dominate Google searches by setting up many hundreds of web sites with every imaginable search term related to your product. Then you can control the search engine page rankings. Google’s algorithms don’t seem to be able to see this strategy and counter it. Too bad.

      • Mari says:

        I just wanted to let you know, I did a Google search typing in “Nerium AD”, the drop down brought up the search with complaints at the end. I think your site was maybe the third in the list. I’m so glad I looked here, much great information.

  26. Pam says:

    I am so impressed with this product that I signed up as a BP and in one month have made $800 and out of the 22 people I have using the product only one has dropped out due to financially reasons and the other 21 are thrilled with their 30 day results…. But don’t try to discourage others from having the opportunity to experience and benefit from it! It’s that kind of negative and LOSING mentality that nauseate me.

    • drjohn says:

      I won’t bother to tell you what nauseates me. It does strike me that the company is not very generous in compensating its sales force. If you had sold 22 units of our company’s product as an affiliate (no “downstream”, sorry) you would have made much more.

  27. Artparker says:

    Thank you for this article. As a photographer there has been something bugging me about their photo comparisons as well, I’ve noticed in the after shots, most are just slightly out of focus, which makes the skin appear more smooth. Normally, I would’ve have regarded this as just a minor mistake made by the operator, until I started noticing most of the images had the same hallmark of the ‘before image’ being in clear focus (very wrinkly) and the after shot always a little out of focus. (softer skin) Now for anyone who doesn’t have a trained eye, the way you can tell is easy, look at the highlight in the pupil, if the reflection of light doesn’t have a sharp edge, it’s out of focus.

    • drjohn says:

      Art, very astute indeed. Let’s find out who does their photography and put those guys on our list of Nerium people we would like to invite here to an open discussion. Hey – we can take the truth. We’re not too proud to admit our own errors of perception. Just help us out here. There are 10,000 people per month visiting this blog. Surely Nerium would like those folks to know if the critical observations they read here are a bunch of hogwash.

    • KMoreno says:

      Amateur photographers Art. Trying considering the total mass of before and afters. They are not all shot badly. Besides, when people who know these folks see the pictures, they are truly impressed because they know they are real despite the focus issues. But I agree it’s obvious they are not taken by good photographers.

      • Sally says:

        The photographs! Ah, yes. Every pair, as in all “before” and “after” photographs, has photos from different angles, different color backgrounds, different personal details such as how the hair is styled. Look up, and your chin/neck are “tighter” than if you look straight or slightly down. The focus trick is good; w/ a digital camera, there’s the “de-noise” element to working on the photo. If there are a lot of spots, for example, slide the de-noise to the right, just like the “shadow” one to lighten the shadows. The de-noise reduces or gets rid of spots – it also gets rid of detail, such as the different depths of nose to cheek, and color in general. I won’t say the photographer isn’t good, I’d say s/he is deceptive.

        A college friend of mine has started using and selling Nerium – after just 4 wks, her skin and her husband’s are better. God forbid we look our ages! I sent her an extensive e-mail about what I’d seen on their website, and the bits about the photos, how easy it is to make a batch that look like so much change has happened, isn’t it wonderful. Haven’t heard back about it at all. So much reference to the guy who started it (if you read the bits about the company, it mentions his founding then leaving another company, leaving it to start Nerium. I wondered what he was fleeing when I saw that, but didn’t look into it.) So much focus on the owner, and she’s a long-established Christian who doesn’t seem to notice this guy is the utter center and hyper-praised by those he’s swallowing. (No response to that statement, either.)

  28. Betty Bender says:

    Please seek out the investigator from MD Anderson for further comment. That should be very interesting. I have been using the product for two weeks and do see some fine lines dissapear, but likely that would happen with any night face cream used routinely. Keep us informed, please, this is very helpful. I did not go for the sign up of “infinite delivery monthly”…Been there, done that. That is definitely a scheme.

    • drjohn says:

      Hi Betty, we will continue to try, but so far no reply to all left messages. We spent hours on the phone with MD Anderson, where his extension had been reassigned to someone else, even though still on the roster. No messages or public pleas for information or discussion have borne fruit as of yet.

  29. AdinaK says:

    I have a friend who is really throwing herself into this. I have no interest in taking part in part of this ( just seems like a front for a classic pyramid scheme) and told her so.

    She lives in another state and i went to her town on business for a few days. I was very happy for the opportunity to catch up with a good friend!! During my stay she asked me- as a favor- to try the product and give my opinion. I knew this was a sales technique but a I took the product just to be polite. She gave me a full sized bottle that she said was a 30 days supply. I went home and then exactly thirty days later she called me up and said said ” hey did you take that bottle of Nerium? I only meant for you to have it during your stay.. it costs $100.” Well thankfully I never used the stuff.. and I mailed it back to her intact. (it smelled bad) I don’t know if she is aware, but ( at least on my end) this little stunt has damaged out friendship. I don’t know if I will ever hold her in the high esteem I once did. I feel betrayed.. I am her friend.. not her mark!

    Also during the trip, I found quickly that questioning or challenging Nerium in anyway was not going to fly. So I backed off! It was like I was questioning her religion, not a business venture. ( There was a theme of it will work if i have faith in it) I think this is a crazy cult that has stolen a dear friend from me! Also I think she was annoyed with me for not being interested in this life changing oppurtunity that she was jamming donw my throat. Not a fan of this stuff at all.

    • drjohn says:

      The saddest thing about MLM’s is what they can do to relationships. Family and friends. We hear it over and over. I once had a friend who fell into the Noni MLM, so I have firsthand experience. It leaves you feeling like that person has thrown you under the wheels of the bus for a few measly bucks and the promises of a Lexus (remind me to write the CEO of Lexus to tell them what this is going to do to their brand image. New tag line for them: Lexus – buy one, lease one, or get one free if you just trash enough of your friendships and sell your soul to the devil).

      • anonymous says:

        Get a life instead of trying to ruin others. This product works great. Just because you didn’t come up with it doesn’t mean you should try to destroy it.

        • drjohn says:

          The usual Nerium buzz words and phrases. This is the doctrine they teach. Any critic is merely out to ruin others (because as we all know there is no such thing as a legitimate Nerium critic). The product works great (because we say so, not because there is any evidence to substantiate). Al critics are jealous, and that is why they criticize (because as we all know there is no such thing as a legitimate Nerium critic). All critics are really just haters (because as we all know there is no such thing as a legitimate Nerium critic). Critics should get a life (because as we all know there is no such thing as a legitimate Nerium critic with a life).

  30. Drgeorge says:

    Sorry to hear about your Nerium experience and the stress it has caused in your friendship. This is not the first time we have been told a similar story. The “cult” like nature of this MLM is captivating. Conference calls and conventions with near religious fervor have been described more than once.

    • AdinaK says:

      I believe I was thrown under the bus for a shot at an ipad! But i understand that a Lexus was envisioned down the road. Wonder why it’s ALWAYS Lexus’s- Maybe some dealerships give some sort of a bulk deal to MLM’s
      Well it’s good to know it not just me. Thank you and Dr John for this site … is very informative. I learned allot in the Skin Science section..

  31. CuriousSkeptic says:

    I’m glad to have found this site. I’ve been looking off and on for a few months now ever since a friend has began using and hawking this stuff. I don’t really need anything like this yet as I’m still pretty young for wrinkle products and the stuff I use for other skin issues works very well (and costs WAY LESS). But when she started talking about how much she makes after just three months (supposedly $1000-$1500 and planning to be near the 10K mark in a few months), well, I have to be honest, I wanted to listen more closely.
    When I asked her for more info it was the whole sales pitch, “sharing not selling”, “compensation” not “money”, every perfect tag-line. But I was very worried about the prospect of pushing it on my friends – as it is very pricey – and also the fact that it’s made from poison. She also suggested joining social groups (book clubs, moms groups, etc) with the true intent of meeting new people to “share the product” with, and how to work the quality of your skin or what you do for a living into every conversation with anyone you might meet: the cashier at the store, waiting in line somewhere, another mom at the library, etc. It was kinda creepy. But I guess that’s just what people do in the name of nabbing clients.
    But my biggest concerns are, What are the long-term effects of this? She talked about something like…they’ve taken the poisonous part out of the product…something like that. Can’t remember for sure. She made it sound like it was just oh-so-safe and of course dropped the MD Anderson association. In addition to long-term effects, how do they work in comparison to other products? I guess some people can really make a killing at doing this, but for me, my conscience wouldn’t let me peddle a product like this without knowing more. Glad to have found this site.

  32. myfriendtoo says:

    I used this product for a month or so, no results. I am still fairly young, 37 and possibly don’t have any real skin care issues in need of help. At $100 a month, I figure that’s pricey for the vague results I may get. So it’s not for me. The real problem lies in that my friend absolutely will not stop suggesting I become a brand partner. I am guessing this is how she makes he money is by hawking it to me, then I hawk to my friend and then they to theirs. HELLO, people, if it looks like a pyramid scheme and talks like a pyramid scheme, it is probably what? right. If it was so great why is it not in stores again? Because the company likes to see people have opportunity or some such nonsense. Sorry but if it were “real”, it would “really” be in stores.

    • drjohn says:

      I wonder how many relationships (friends, family) have been tainted (sold out) by the nerium “network marketing” (pyramid) scheme? Hundreds? Thousands? Hundreds of thousands? How desperate are people to make $$ that they would convert a friendship into a transaction? It’s all very sordid and sad indeed.

  33. InformationHound says:

    Thank you for this great blog and wealth of information. I was just at a ‘sharing’ of information on this product. by a very close friend and I did purchase a bottle to try as a supporting gesture to my friend. However, deep down, I was thinking it may not be the best thing to do. I’ve been going through as much information as I can get my hands on – searching the FDA website,, and medwatch – I really haven’t found any phase II/III/IV trial information (not that I would expect there to be any since FDA approval isn’t necessary for cosmetics). I’m just seeing published papers that the Nerium website have posted. I’ve worked in the pharmaceutical industry for 20 years and when someone says there’s been ‘clinical trials’ – I want to see the results, especially from reputable sources – not just a company’s website. I also have a concern that a product would be deemed safe and effective (quote from the line leader at the meeting) when I’m hearing all kinds of adverse events (AEs) from the folks posting above. I wonder has anyone reported their AEs to the FDA?. I’m still very much on the fence about this product and my involvement in the MLM – especially now that I’ve found info from ‘the other side’. Thanks again for providing your perspective!

    • Carolyn says:

      My friend was using Nerium and her face/eyes swelled, turned out it was NOT that, but her Neutrogena. When I researched Neutrogena reactions, I found hundreds of reports of swollen eyes and irritated skin. I asked around and lots of people agreed they get reactions to it. Are you going to start a blog on the greed and horrors of Neutrogena next?? By the way, it never came back with Nerium use and she happily is enjoying slow and steady improvement in the appearance of her skin!

      • drjohn says:

        Why was there no Neutrogena problem before starting Nerium??? No need for a new blog – we can handle Neutrogena horrors right here.

  34. Surprised says:

    Hi, crazy story here!
    I have had several MOHs surgeries for skin cancers. As a former sun worshiper, I am now paying the price!
    My Dr. Scheduled another punch biopsy for a new spot, I was scheduled for biopsy in 2 weeks. As you can imagine I was quite upset to go thru this again. My Dr. Asked me to wait just a minute before leaving and went to his office. When he returned he had a bottle of Nerium in his hand. He gave it to me and told me another Dr. had given it to him to try. He had not gotten around to it but told me to take it home and put it on my face with a bit of water at night. He said he had no idea if it worked but many of the staff he has worked with liked it, and he mentioned it couldn’t hurt!
    I went home and used it for 2 weeks and when I showed upvfor my biopsy I knew it was smaller. I was shocked when I was told there was nothing wrong with the spot and to check back in 6weeks. I have continued to use it in the spot and it has now been 36 days and it’s gone.
    Say what you will about this product, I have had a miracle with it.I left a message for my primary Dr. To find out how I can get more as my bottle is almost empty.

    • drjohn says:

      So, Surprised found his/her way here by googling on Nerium, but is waiting to hear back from their physician where they can obtain more of this “miracle”. Does this sound fishy to anyone else? It is infinitely easy on the internet to find people selling Nerium, and inviting you to sell it too, preferably under them in the pyramid. The story lacks credibility. Further, if it was good for cancer (which means its killing off some cells) then it is not necessarily going to be good for everyone else who doesn’t have cancer … it is labelled as an anti-aging concoction. So again, this story lacks credibility, and has huge scientific and logical holes. If there is a physician out there recommending this stuff, we would like to have a friendly chat with him, doc to doc, to compare notes.

  35. Charles says:

    I don’t know if MLM’s work for some people or not. They aren’t all short lived grab the profit and run. Witness Amway, Noni, and Herbalife. You seem to have an axe to grind with MLM’s (perhaps that Noni experience). It really stretches your credibility though when you are CEO or a principal of a competing anti-aging product. (Cellese Regenerative Therapeutics- AnteAge). That’s kind of like McDonalds putting out info that Burger King’s hamburgers are bad cause they’re flame broiled (and might cause cancer). You have got to be kidding! The fact that anybody takes your rantings seriously as if they are unbiased information is ludicrous.

    • Drgeorge says:

      Charles, MLMs come and go, but mostly go. Occasionally one sticks around, especially if they offer products that their own distribution network buys and uses personally. BFT knows from a former high ranking executive within the Amway empire that with many scores of thousands of “distributors” worldwide, very few make substantial incomes off their efforts, but they do buy and use Amway products often.

      We hardly think “ludicrous” is an appropriate adjective to use when describing our efforts to find someone, somewhere, somehow to provide a sound scientfic mechanism of action and rationale as to why this product should be of any benefit to skin. Maybe you’re the one to enlightten us. BFT began as a “truth matters” blogsite in all things cosmeceutical. How is our seeking the science behind what so far seems nothing but smoke and mirrors not consistent with that mission. With or without a competing product (ours actually does have science, lots of it, to explain the benefits it provides), we still want to call out chalatans in the industry. If you look around BFT, you will see Nerium is a johnny-come-lately. We hit some other “posers” earlier. Are they selling Nerium at Nordstrom’s, Neiman Marcus, or Saks? How about Costco or Target? Oh, BFT forgot, one doesn’t “sell” Nerium, one jsimply “shares” it with their friends, or neighbors, or family members, or people they meet in line at the grocery store. How many Brand Partners do you have?

  36. charles says:

    George, I’m just trying to figure out where your coming from. You have to admit it does look fishy for a guy selling a $280.00 anti-aging system with many of the same anti-aging claims as Nerium to be bad mouthing Nerium. Or any other anti-aging product for that matter. Also, you being a scientist and all I can understand your curiosity about how Nerium works. I have the same question. But, I cannot understand why a scientist would care in the least how a product is distributed. Does selling a product at Nordstrom’s confer some quality to the product that makes it more effective? Also, you talk about providing “science” (a term loosely thrown about by yourself and Nerium) and yet I cannot find any science articles, peer reviewed or not, regarding your AnteAge system and it’s effectiveness. Perhaps you could direct me to them.

    • Drgeorge says:

      Chris, let’s cut to the chase. Yes, we do have issues with the sales method Nerium chose to go to market but that is a secondary point to the fact that the “story” they have concocted to create “buzz” just doesn’t hold up. First, the banner of M D Anderson Cancer Center is held high to legitimize the purported active ingredient from the nerium oleander plant as being grounded in high science. We buy that – it is cytotoxic, cells don’t like it and show their dislike by dying off. Fine for cells you want to kill like cancer cells. So far, so good.

      Here’s the interesting part: the anti-aging effect was an “accidental finding”. Well, accidental or not, there has to be some mechanism of action whereby a cytotoxic compound now is able to “support” or “help” or “revitalize” the skin. No one has offered that explanation and we know that BFT is being watched carefully by many, many interested parties in Texas. If Nerium wanted to inform the consuming public as to how its product actually accomplishes what they claim , they would. M D Anderson has a disclaimer on their website that they are not involve with Nerium and do not endorse it in any way.

      As for the mechansims of action for our product, and there are several because we include multiple proven actives in our system, you can look at the ingredients listed on our website. The physiology is there and so are many scientific references to explain what these substances do, and the reason they are beneficial to skin. Nothing of the sort from Nerium except strong reasons why their active should NOT be good for skin. Is that not troubling to you? It is to us. Our mission is to help lay audiences see through the marketing fog, the smoke and mirrors of an industry that seems all too prone to play its audience for suckers. We find that objectionable. Poke around BFT, our message is consistent: good science good; bad science bad. Pretty simple.

      • charles says:

        Great! But where are the scientific peer reviewed articles that you talk about regarding your product? So far, on your site anyway, there are none. In fact, your site has about as much “Science” as Nerium’s as far as I can tell. Could you please reference them?

        • drjohn says:

          charles, nice to see you again, but I’m chuckling that you keep coming back despite the fact that we annoy you so. The blog you love to hate?

          To answer your question, you might look at the end of the stem cell series articles here. and and then go to and look up the ingredients list. For each of the key ingredients (I believe 16 in all) you will find multiple references to peer reviewed scientific literature documenting the benefits. There is also a section on the AnteAge site detailing the top level results of the anteage clinical trial (much larger than most).

          • Bedazzled says:

            Here’s the truth: the primary cause of extrinsic aging is chronic inflammation. Everything causes inflammation these days: UV, diet, stress, hormones, environmental factors. This cascade, once induced, is very complicated. To stop the cascade of chronic inflammation in the skin, you need active ingredients in a stable form. Then you have to deliver these to the targeted cells in a way your skin can actually use them, and you must do this without creating damage to your skin barrier, which would only lead to further inflammation if you did damage it while delivering these active ingredients. More important than having scientific, peer-reviewed, outside independent, split face, double-blind clinical studies with p values on single ingredients and then putting all those single ingredients together in one bottle and calling it a viable product is this: outside, independent, double-blind, split faced clinical studies with measurable results in the skin on the finished product. And yes, I work for that company that does all of the above. All products are tested in this manner for their safety and efficacy on the finished product. We do not contain cytotoxins. I won’t leave the name here! But I’m proud to say, it’s the real deal. And like all those age spots and the laxity in your skin took years to show up on your face. Years of inflammation and damage. Why would a cytotoxin take away this damage in three weeks? There is, as of yet, no proof that stem cells from plants create any measurable change in the skin. They are too big of a molecule to actually penetrate the skin. The best stem cells are your own adipose stem cells. I’m really enjoying this conversation though! Great job!

          • drjohn says:

            You have it right about inflamm’aging, but you seem to have missed the series on stem cells in skin care. Go to the menu at the top of the page “skin care science” and select “stem cells & skin care”. You will discover that legitimate solutions from stem cell science do not apply stem cells to skin. It’s all about the biosignals from stem cells, captured and creating a highly effective active based on the role of cytokines in healing and regeneration. The read the post entitled “Stem Cytokine Tissue of Origin Issues“. Your statement on adipose stem cells is entirely incorrect. They create a cytokine pattern that is inflammatory (and has other dangers). Read all the science evidence we document here, and then let’s talk.

  37. Charles says:

    Just trying to get to the truth, like you. I could not find any references to any articles, much less about AnteAge. And of course, as I’m sure you are aware, peer reviewed scientific literature on the INGREDIENTS of a product do not constitute a peer reviewed article of the whole product. So, sadly, as far as your “mission” to expose your customers to “good/bad science” is concerned I think your credibility is severely strained.

    • drjohn says:

      Then you didn’t look very hard. Just as an example, here is a link to just one of the pages on the anteage web site, named key ingredients in AnteAGE serum. . Now you will see a scrolling list of ingredients, with 3 “tabs” for each ingredient – DEFINITION, PHYSIOLOGY, AND REFERENCES. Click on any of the reference tabs for any ingredient. For instance, here is the first one:
      1. Niacinamide: A B Vitamin that Improves Aging Facial Skin Appearance. Dermatologic Surgery, March 2006.
      2. Topical niacinamide provides skin aging appearance benefits while enhancing barrier function. Textbook of Cosmetic Dermatology Nicotinic acid/niacinamide and the skin. Journal of Cosmetic Dermatology. Nov. 2004.

      Every ingredient has such a tab. There is another page entitled Key Ingredients – Accelerator. Same story there. Dozens of references (that you say you couldn’t find. Documented peer review literature for each active ingredient. Note: There are none so blind as those who will not see.

      Now to say that scientific literature pertaining to product ingredients (in a multi-ingredient product) doesn’t count is totally specious as an argument. Not to mention that we pointed you again to the clinical trial results summary for the whole product. If I told you that nearly every prescription medicine was studied in a different form than marketed, with different fillers and additives if nothing else, would you say that this negates the science of that product/ingredient? The FDA certainly doesn’t say that. Just the opposite. Would you argue that a multivitamin is inneffective because the whole mix was never studied together, only the vitamin constituents, all on the GRAS list?

      Charles, given that you cannot even manage to find find references we point you directly to, and seem to have a different standard for judging scientific validity than the whole science establishment, I don’t think you have established your own credibility to a requisite degree to allow you to question anyone else’s credibility. ‘Nuff said.

  38. Objective Reader says:

    Note to Dr. John: You don’t fight fire with fire. “nuff said”

  39. Kerri XXXX says:

    No, you will only receive a 5-day sample pack. No worries.

    Kerri’s last name X’d out (which she generously provided so you all could seek her out as your nerium guru). She just dropped 7 new comments (we didn’t publish them) all of which read like billboard ads recruiting for others to join (under) her as Nerium reps. No science or logic offered. Just “it works, call me”.

    I’d like to ask Kerri what she is thinking. Do you really think with all that we have documented here that we desire to provide space for you to recruit others to an MLM based on a product that kills skin cells? Well, I guess it shows chutzpah. Maybe that’s what you need to be nerium BP. Put on the blinders, world be damned, I’m gonna sell you this stuff no matter what. Which just confirms to me that this is all about the “get rich” and not at all about the product. Sorry, Kerri – you need to get your own web site. There are a bizillion of them out there.

    • Kerri XXXX says:

      You have NO CLUE how people or MLM’s work, obviously. I thought I would provide what insight I have as a customer and now a brand partner, but you obviously do not care to hear truth. You are welcome to hate, bash, and lie all you want, but the fact is nothing you have provided here has been fact.

      • drjohn says:

        So if you take issue with Nerium, the product or the MLM, and allow respectful debate, and give others a platform to tell about their experiences, you are branded a HATER, BASHER AND LIAR. I’m sorry, but this is cult-like rhetoric, pure and simple. Try to discredit dissenting opinion, at all costs, without offering a scintilla of new information. Just chants of “it works”. I don’t buy it.

        • Kerri XXXX says:

          You have provided no empirical evidence that proves Nerium is unsafe and unethical and yet you continue on your rant. When you provide empirical evidence that substantiates your claim, I will listen.

          Because it is not my job to do so. The company selling the product has the burden of proof. As to the the ethics of MLM, just look around the internet. I’m not the first to notice that it can do bad things to a lot of people.

          Our active ingredient is being researched worldwide for cancer treatments in a variety of ways.

          But it is being touted as anti-aging. Cancer treatments kill cells, and the Newman data shows that nerium kills cells. Show me how this is anti-aging.

          As a physician, you have a fiduciary duty to do your research. I urge you to take that duty seriously.

          I believe you misunderstand the meaning of fiduciary duty. The only one with that sort of duty is Nerium and its BP’s. This results legally from the fact that people “entrust” you with their money, because you have sold them something YOU say works. YOU owe eachg and every one of them a good faith duty of honesty, integrity, reliability, and a promise to do no harm. To reiterate: You are the one with a duty. And I would include in that duty that you should do no harm to relationships. No sacrificing family or friends to the altar of “I’m gonna get a Lexus” if I sell enough of this stuff.

          And, please, Dr. John, I am merely questioning your intent and ethics… I have no interest in bashing you personally.

          News to me that questioning another’s ethics is no longer personal.

        • Carolyn says:

          You do not allow debate when you consistently edit opinions you do not agree with

      • j b says:

        I will add my two cents to your “argument” This company you are so enamored with has no customer service for the customer! Their support line is designed to answer and field inquiries about how sell, process orders, fix websites, read back office jargon. They are not equipped or do they exhibit a “quality minded” approach to address concerns on actual consumers (customers) that use the product. There is NO CONSUMER AFFAIRS or Quality group fielding inquiries or adverse skin reporting beyond the magic 30 days. If Nerium was worth anything, they would refund the cost of the product to any consumer, regardless of how they purchased it. Nerium is so worried about shutting down people selling on on amazon or ebay, How else are dissatisfied customers supposed to unload this snake oil… The company doesn’t take it back…
        The clinicals are bait and switch…. I don’t care what a GC detected from extracted blood after a week or 2! What about actual negative reactions to the skin after 3, 6 12 months exposure? Talk to me about how safe the product is after long term clinicals are conducted by an independent university and I’ll maybe believe it.

  40. Objective Reader says:

    This is a note to Kerri: I have lost a good friend because of this product. She tried to sell it to me and I found out later it was because she gets it free if she can sell it to three people. She lied to me when I asked her the ingredients explaining that “she didn’t know” but just knew it worked. She did not tell me it was a MLM and I only found out on my own when she sent me an email with a link to her website. I will no longer contact or speak to her.

    • Kerri XXXX says:

      This tells me she was not educated about her product or the business.

      And who was supposed to educate her? Was that MY responsibility? Objective’s? Or Nerium’s? Remember – First, do no harm.

      On the topic of cancer research… not all cancer research is based on chemical treatments, i.e. KILLING cells. Many are looking to improve the power of one’s body to heal using natural treatments – since standard chemical treatments typically result in secondary cancers and death.

      You haven’t read the experiments then. You should. It is cytotoxic. Dr. Newman proved it himself.

      • Kerri XXXX says:

        You lost all credibility long ago when you deleted and edited my posts.Just know that I have copied this entire conversation, including my posts before you hacked them.

        The arrogance of this statement is astounding. This may surprise you, but we have no obligation to published all or part of any of your posts, which were clearly propaganda for Nerium (not honest debate, which we welcome) and advertising for your business. Why don’t you start your own blog? Now where did I put that gasoline?

  41. Traci says:

    Can I add my two cents? I am in the Direct Selling Industry and have been for almost 8 years. This business model affords me such flexibility in how much I earn and when I earn it. However, I never, ever thought I would be “one of those people.” Most of my experience with direct sellers was a poor one. I even attend a meeting to learn about a new internet marketing business only to be presented Amway. And yes, that was an invite from an old college friend. So of course I had an awful opinion.

    But after doing much on-line and in-person searching, I discovered that I didn’t have to be that person. I could be a successful professional without alienating friends and family.

    The secret to my success? Tell the truth about what I was doing. Take pride in my profession. Belief in my product. Ask and then accept an answer. Work my business like any other entrepreneur.

    I agree that many are poorly trained on how to work this business professionally. But many are not. I agree that there are many poor performing but well marketed products. Angel Dusting runs rampant in marketing of beauty.

    You had mentioned earlier that if this product was so great, why wasn’t it sold in department stores? (disclaimer: I am not of rep of this line) I think Rodan and Fields is a perfect example of a brand that was carried in brick and mortar who left to reinvent themselves in the direct selling market.

    Let me also say I think you have done a wonderful job discussing the product side of things and I hope to share with you my thoughts on the ups and downs of direct sales. It is certainly not for everyone.

    • drjohn says:

      Traci, first let me thank you for your intelligent and well presented thoughts. After ranting about a particularly egregious MLM, especially when combined with a product whose science story “doesn’t add up” I guess I need to clarify something. I have no problem with direct selling. I’m an entrepreneur, and encourage others in that direction. My company does direct selling, and has affiliates. But I want to contrast that with MLM’s where the value of the product is superfluous because the real income derives from recruiting others under you in a pyramid. Self-delusion aside, people are, motivated by the income, not the product. In that kind of context, Angel Dust sells just as well as true gold. Because what is being consumed is not skin care,. but people. People become a commodity. Friends, family? Sacrificed at the altar of perceived riches. Greed dominates so much that all sense of proportion gets lost … who cares if the product doesn’t work, or causes harm, or stinks? Everything is distorted. Read previous comments by Kerri (who has not given up, and is now threatening us with her lawyers because we will not provide her a platform for selling – I’m serious folks. MLM’s create this sort of desperate nonsense). In summary, direct selling is not evil. MLM? Another story.

  42. Brian says:

    Long comment here by Brian, so I will counterpoint between paragraphs- DrJohn

    I am glad to see that there is some degree of published skepticism about Nerium. I am a skeptic having been sold the Amway ticket in college. I found this post because my wife has bought into the Nerium opportunity and I think it is vitally important that she have as much information as possible both positive and negative. That being said, I have a few issues that I would like to address about the approach and tone of the general conversation.

    First, MLM in general has a well-earned reputation for poor results. Obviously any claim the exponential growth can result in vast riches is entirely outside the realm of reality. It is however used and propagated by MLMers and is the shiny little object in the raccoon trap that plays on the biases and self interest of people. If you were to look at a statistical analysis of the industry as a whole you would see a vast number of failures for every success. Using that as an argument against any and all uses of this distribution method is using a similar type of bias to fight against network marketing. Past results are not always a prediction of future results. (Mostly because of people in my opinion) There are a variety of long lasting network/direct marketing that provide a significant source of income for many people (Avon, PartyLite, MaryKay and even the dreaded Amway)

    Agree. With emphasis on vast number of failures for every success and would add that the personal tragedies of some of those those failures is quite real, not just a data point on a statistical graph. If I may borrow … REAL PEOPLE REAL FAILURE REAL PAIN

    Second, the choice of distribution has almost nothing to do with the value or quality of a product. This choice is just a matter of who found the product first. I have invented a number of small and what I consider to be useful products. The one that was purchased never saw the light of day. Why? Because I sold it to someone who wanted to market it and he in turn sold it to someone who had a competing product and wanted mine on the shelf. The complexity of markets does not allow for a real critique of a product based on the method of distribution.

    Agree somewhat, except great products generally do not generally end up in MLM, only poor or mediocre ones. When Apple starts an MLM to sell iPads, I’ll change my opinion.

    Third, the “accidental discovery” claim. Viagra. Enough said.

    Bit on an urban myth, that. The drug opens blood vessels. The physiology of erections was well known way back then, and other drugs in the class had similar “side effects”. The real back story is that the scientists expected it would do just what it does, but you couldn’t get funding for erection research in 1922. In fact you might lose your job contemplating it. So, you do angina research and call the effect on the other organ a “side effect”. This is more about social science than physiology.

    Fourth, incentives are a problem with the article and this conversation in particular. You can claim that you are independent but the fact is that you are working on a competing product and as much as you would like to avoid the dangerous biases associated with competing interests, you just can’t. I DO very much appreciate that this article exists and amazingly I found it on google (on the first page), but the responses to many of the posts on here have a hostile tone that make your impartiality hard to believe. You are most likely just as objective as you claim but the tone of the responses to what are clearly not the bests posts needs a bit of self-reflection about how it hurts your claim.

    The tone of our responses reflects the degree of passion we have about the subject matter. Yes, we could be nicer, a bit more gracious in our language, and we could try to sound more objective, whatever that is. But its really hard to talk about stuff than puts people at risk without a degree of vexation. We are physicians, we care about our patients, and about the health and well being of humans in general. Physicians are actually trained to exude certitude. Who wants a doctor who vacillates and is wishy washy or mamby pamby doing their heart surgery? Training aside, this blog is about controversial ideas, and controversy begets passion.

    We have to deal with this at least once a week when someone casts doubt on our objectivity. Please search on “bias” in the little search box. We have said over and over that we are biased, that we have conflicts, whatever. We even talk at great length about what bias is, how universal it is, as you reference points out. We say once again, we do not live in a void, we have biases, we have day jobs as scientists in a for-profit setting, and believe strongly that our products are light years ahead of anything else. But we are also physicians, love the truth, and we argue from an evidence based built by others, not ourselves. We care more about the truth than we do our our personal interests, financial, academic, or otherwise. We are not here at BFT to make friends, advance careers, or sell products. Our mission here is elevating the standard, holding companies accountable when the science doesn’t add up. And, hey, it’s a blog … filled with opinion as well as fact. But then, it’s not required reading either. You can always click and return to the rest of the internet where there are Nerium flowers grow wildly and Nerium is wunderjuice and everyone on earth will soon be driving a Lexus.

    Fifth, I would like to know exactly what make Coca-Cola such a hit, but none of the imitators have been able to figure it out even though they know whats in the ingredient list. It is called a “trade secret” for a reason.

    Agree. But then coca-cola removed most of its harmful to health ingredients years ago under congressional scrutiny (about 100 years ago). Maybe that is what’s required here.

    Finally, I would encourage readers to check out Brian Nosek’s recent interview with Russ Robets at this was a well timed interview as I was listening to it when I found this article.

    It’s about bias, so we agree, rampant everywhere, including academia. Also journalism, media everywhere, everything you read, and people anywhere, at all times, by nature (e.g. who you choose for your friends, what size they are, whether they smoke … all are driven by bias).

    I am just starting to review the research coming out of Nerium Biotech because I want my wife is excited about this product and I want to make sure she has information from both sides of the public debate on this product and opportunity. It is very important to examine the counter-factual when analyzing these types of things. She may or may not be successful, and we are prepared for that. Her goals are conservative ($300 per month). Anyone who goes into this thinking it a pie in the sky is fooling themselves. I was very clear about how I was burned by Amway in college.

    If this post makes it up, I will post the problems that I find with Nerium. (A little inside info if it helps)

    It’s a well written comment, we welcome it whether we agree or not. Thanks for this. Good luck to your wife.

    PS – For the person who had so much trouble reaching ST&T, I called all three of the published numbers from their website and reached a real live person on the first try.

    Please tell us what questions you asked and what their response was. And if you really want to do the readers here a favor, ask them if I can interview one of their scientists on the record. Arrange that and you have made an impact.

  43. Drgeorge says:

    Brian, thank you for your well considered comment. Drjohn already discussed the background of Viagra – the research was to develop a smooth muscle relaxant that can impact vascular resistance and flow. Ergo, it’s envisioned use in treatment of coronary artery disease ,and systemic and pulmonary hypertension – all serious and potentially life threatening conditions. So the fact that another vascular issue, erectile dysfunction, where inadequate arterial inflow is the primary issue, can be treated using the same medication makes perfect sense. The mechanism of action fits the physiologic purpose of the treatment – totally logical and consistent.

    Not so with Nerium, and that is how this discussion started. One is basically asked to suspend rational scientific fundamentals and buy the hype. The marketers of the product are touting an “accidental” finding and claiming it is somehow related to cancer reserach at M D Andrson Cancer Center. Now we know, M D Anderson denies any involvement in the company and explicitely states it is not endorsing anything having to do with this product.

    So here’s the rub: BFT is about truth telling in the field of cosmeceuticals and anti-aging in particular. The entire MLM issue is a sidebar discussion about methods of going to market. Historically MLMs have ultimately hurt many more people than they have helped.) The genesis of our issue with Nerium has been and continues to be the claim of a benefit that is not consistent with the known mechanism of action of their purported active. No one, not one single defender or detractor of the Nerium empire has thus far stepped up to take that on, even to say it’s a “secret”.

    An emperor with magical see-through clothes still looks naked to the untutored eye. Someone tutor us.

    • Brian says:

      It did not take me long to find recent reviewed research about the effects of cardiac glycosides on the behavior of dermal fibroblasts. I am not a doc but I am a decent researcher. Evidence suggests that these effects promote wound repair. This seems to be at the heart of the claims made by nerium biotech that their product works with your own healing mechanisms. Their stated reason for not discussing the cellular effects of the product is because it would take them across the boundary of a cosmetic product to a medical claim which requires them to jump through much larger hoops to bring it to market. This beg the question, if it is such a benefit why not bring it to market as a pharmaceutical? The answer in my mind is money. They want to and feel that they can make more by stopping short of the rigors of FDA trials and approval. Does this negate the science? No. Does this make their choice morally or ethically wrong? Perhaps. It depends on the particular moral and ethical matrices of those evaluating the choice. My personal evaluation is no, but it makes sense that inquisitive and regirous minds like drjohn and drgeorge. Thank you two for your critical voices on this subject matter. It is great to be able to have intelligent discourse on the Internet.

      A short note on failure. It’s a good thing. The failures in medicine have resulted in all of the remarkable advances in modern medicine and have improved quality of life for billions of people. In business and markets it is also critical because it gets the bad stuff out of the market when it is allowed to function properly. Is The marketing approach of Nerium engineered for failure? I would say no. I believe it is engineered for rapid saturation and the reason for this is to have a market ready for the next batch of products they put out.

      • Drgeorge says:

        Fibroblasts have a limited repertoire, responding to innumerable non-lethal stresses in culture in similar fashion, exactly what was observed when exposed to cardiac glycosides. While the process of producing collagen precursors can properly be described as part of the “wound repair” process, the process of healing is much more complex.

        Whether the insult to living tissue is from chemical irritation, physical trauma, thermal insult, foreign bodies, infection, parasites, etc., the sequence of healing will involve much more than the production of collagen. When one considers that the scarless healing of fetal surgery and massive keloids all involve collagen production, the complexity of the process becomes apparent. Inflammation, debris removal, cellular and matrix proliferation, and tissue remodeling are each indispensible elements, now known to be under the control of a variety of biosignals e.g. cytokines. Remarkably, the general observations regarding such biosignals dates back almost 9 decades to a 1924 article in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA). Quoting from the article: “The harmozones are secreted by certain cells, and their function consists in arousing other cells to activity. Their nature is utterly unknown. They act as catalysts, but do not build up protoplasm.” Today we call these signals cytokines.

        Chronic administration of sublethal doses of the cytotoxic chemical in NeriumAD may be stimulating collagen secretion but culture flask studies of a few days duration cannot answer that question. The results of such stimulation would occur over many weeks to months whereas improvements with Nerium are said to occur within 30 days. Is something else at play? Are the other ingredients accounting for changes seen?…if they are seen at all (the jury appears out on that.)

        Other botanical extracts can elicit similar response from fibroblasts in culture. While this may be part of the story, it does not obviate the concern that chronic smoldering inflammation from daily use of Nerium may be pro-aging in the long run.

        BFT thanks Brian for his homework. Nerium International: is Brian on the right path or is there more to the story you want to share?


        Carrel, A; Leuocytic Trephones, JAMA. 1924;82(4):255-258.

        Bloom E, Sznitowska M, Polansky J, Ma ZD, Maibach HI; Increased Proliferation of Skin Cells by Sublethal Doses of Sodium Lauryl Sulfate; Dermatology 1994, Vol. 188, No. 4

        Parasitology / Volume 129 / Issue 04 / October 2004 , pp 455-464

        Carvalho P et al; Effects of erythromycin on the rabbit pleura: its potential role as a pleural sclerosant. Pulmonary Research Laboratory, VA Medical Center, Boise, Idaho 83702-4598.

        Aslam M, Lansy E, Varani J; Pomegranate as a cosmeceutical source: Pomegranate fractions promote proliferation and procollagen synthesis and inhibit matrix metalloproteinase-1 production in human skin cells; Journal of Ethnopharmacology; Volume 103, Issue 3, 20 February 2006, Pages 311–318

        Varani J et al; Separation of retinoid-induced epidermal and dermal thickening from skin irritation; ARCHIVES OF DERMATOLOGICAL RESEARCH: Volume 295, Number 6 (2003), 255-262

        • Brian says:

          The promoting healing I was referring to is increased production of collagen. Pretty sure that would produce an effect similar to the one Nerium is claiming

          • drjohn says:

            As DrGeorge points out, collagen production by fibroblasts is part of normal healing, but is also a response to stress, inflammation, and disease. There are also diseases whose pathognomonic signs include increased deposition of collagen. And when you induce collagen production by inflammation, you tend to get a different pattern of collagen types, and differences in the cross-linking characteristics. What that typically leads to is fibrotic healing, which long term has untoward aesthetic consequences.

  44. Kathryn (fake name) says:

    I am a brand partner. I love the product for me. However, this company is total “bait & switch”. I have heard one lie after another and then I always hear the same response that the rapid growth is why there are mistakes. Where are all those industry leaders? Humm I would have thought they could have figured it out before they got all these brand partners. From free websites to $14.95 and then $29.99 without notice. I was told you had a 30 day money back deal on my $500 success pack which is a great selling point. Oops, I guess that was wrong of coarse after your check is cashed. Thankfully I caught on before I unknowingly sucked anyone down the hole better known as Nerium. Feel the need to use fake name since I haven’t broken away from Scientology, oh I mean Nerium yet!

  45. Kelbie says:

    Note: the following are the combined posts of Kelbie, both addressing essentially the same issue

    Anti seizure meds for a LONG TIME had a mechanism of action that was unknown. There are still some with the mechanism at least partially unknown. Neurologists gave them out because they WORKED. People were seeing results and so they continue to use the product.

    Since, doctor, you are so concerned with how the oleander plant actually works, perhaps you could tell me how anti seizure meds work exactly? Because I take them and since no one really knows how they work (despite the fact they stop my seizures) should I stop taking them?

    • drjohn says:

      Actually the mechanism of action of anti-seizure medications are quite well known. This document gives a nice historical reference, and go to page 3 to read about mechanisms. Maybe not much was known about them back in 1912 when phenobarb was first prescribed, but I’m not giving Nerium a pass on that basis since we know a whole lot more about physiology & biochemistry now than 100 years ago, and these things are routinely measured in labs around the world. I would call that the “playing dumb” defense, and it doesn’t wash in the modern scientific era.

    • Drgeorge says:

      Note: the following are three combined posts from Kelbie; the first two addressing the same issue and the third an inexplicable personal attack on the founders of BFT, apparently because we didn’t jump through her reply hoop fast enough. (Good grief, Kelbie, your posts were all written today (September 15, 2012) and its only 10:44 a.m. in California as I start to write this. Are you always so impatient and demanding?)

      From Kelbie at 12:41 a.m.:
      Since, doctor, you are so concerned with how the oleander plant actually works, perhaps you could tell me how anti seizure meds work exactly? Because I take them and since no one really knows how they work (despite the fact they stop my seizures) should I stop taking them?

      The premise of your comment is not correct. The mechanism of action of anti-epileptic drugs is well defined. See the reference and abstract posted below. Kelbie, consult your neurologist about whether or not you should stop taking your drugs. We don’t and won’t have a doctor/patient relationship with you.

      From Kelbie at 12:49 a.m. – Anti seizure meds for a LONG TIME had a mechanism of action that was unknown. There are still some with the mechanism at least partially unknown. Neurologists gave them out because they WORKED. People were seeing results and so they continue to use the product.

      Fairly common in the past, many medical discoveries were the result of serendipity, including discovering that side effects of some drugs turned out to be valuable for purposes not envisioned when they were first developed. With advanced knowledge about signaling molecule and receptor structure, drugs can now be designed and “engineered” to achieve a desirable goal, i.e. having the proper geometry to be expected to have a signaling effect. That does not shorten, however, the long and expensive process of proving the drug is both effective AND safe.

      10:23 a.m. I believe I asked you to explain why neurologists used anti epileptic medications before their mechanism if action was known. Funny my 2 posts vanshied…hmmmmm. Are you 2 actually physicians anyway?

      Kelbie equates what she erroneously thinks is a similar situation with the anti-seizure medications she takes daily to the lack of a known mechanism of action to explain the alleged anti-aging benefits of NeriumAD. We know oleander kills cancer cells, and we also know why from the work of Dr. Newman. What BFT would like to see is the explanation as to why deleterious effects on unwanted “bad” cells can paradoxically be of benefit to “good” cells.

      Kelbie, your 2 posts did not “vanish”. Comments need to be approved prior to publication on this or other blogsites. BFT took a little time off this morning to be with the grandkids prior to logging on for the first time and seeing someone named Kelbie was out there having a snit.

      Czapinski, Piotr; Blaszczyk, Barbara; Czuczwar, Stanislaw J. Mechanisms of Action of Antiepileptic Drugs; Current Topics in Medicinal Chemistry, Volume 5, Number 1, January 2005 , pp. 3-14(12)

      Gamma-Aminobutyric acid (GABA), one of the main inhibitory neurotransmitters in the brain, interacts with three types of receptors for GABA – GABAA, GABAB and GABAC. GABAA receptors, associated with binding sites for benzodiazepines and barbiturates in the form of a receptor complex, control opening of the chloride channel. When GABA binds to the receptor complex, the channel is opened and chloride anions enter the neuron, which is finally hyperpolarized. GABAB receptors are metabotropic, linked to a cascade of second messengers whilst the physiological meaning of ionotropic GABAC receptors, mainly located in the retina, is generally unknown. Novel antiepileptic drugs acting selectively through the GABA-ergic system are tiagabine and vigabatrin. The former inhibits neuronal and glial uptake of GABA whilst the latter increases the synaptic concentration of GABA by inhibition of GABA-aminotransferase. Gabapentin, designed as a precursor of GABA easily entering the brain, was shown to increase brain synaptic GABA. This antiepileptic drug also decreases influx of calcium ions into neurons via a specific subunit of voltage-dependent calcium channels. Conventional antiepileptics generally inhibit sodium currents (carbamazepine, phenobarbital, phenytoin, valproate) or enhance GABA-ergic inhibition (benzodiazepines, phenobarbital, valproate). Ethosuximide, mainly controlling absences, reduces calcium currents via T-type calcium channels. Novel antiepileptic drugs, mainly associated with an inhibition of voltage-dependent sodium channels are lamotrigine and oxcarbazepine. Since glutamate-mediated excitation is involved in the generation of seizure activity, some antiepileptics are targeting glutamatergic receptors – for instance, felbamate, phenobarbital, and topiramate. Besides, they also inhibit sodium currents. Zonisamide, apparently sharing this common mechanism, also reduces the concentration of free radicals.
      Novel antiepileptic drugs are better tolerated by epileptic patients and practically are devoid of important pharmacokinetic drug interactions.

  46. Debbie says:

    It’s sad to me that an article written by someone about a company can cause people to look badly on a business model that works if you work. I’m a stay at home mom with three young children and I’ve been in different network marketing companies over the years that have allowed me to stay home and raise my kids while making a full time income. My husband lost his J-O-B and I found a way to pick up the slack. Network marketing is not a scam. If you work hard, just like if you owned your own business, you will reap the benefits of your labor. Many people come into network marketing and think if they sign up they will magically make money. That’s just not the case. You have to put effort into it and treat it like a “real business”. Have you ever heard stories of small business owners that open up a store front and then never enter the building, don’t advertise, or don’t work long hours? Not just the opposite. Inorder to get it off the ground you have to put forth an effort. Well, that’s the same effort that it takes to get your network marketing business off the ground. It may take months or even years to see the big bucks, but if you persist, you will get there. This article was written by someone that doesn’t see network marketing as the vehicle but others will. It’s hare to write about something you have no experience with.

    • drjohn says:

      I sure Debbie is right, that you can treat it as a business, put in a full time effort, and derive an income from it. And if Debbie does it right, she tells all the people that she recruits to be her “downstream” the exact same thing….don’t try to do this halfheartedly. Although I suppose that can be generalized to all jobs. And Debbie defends MLM without trying to justify the Nerium product, which lends her more credence. So we thank Debbie for her perspective. But if you read one of the bizillion web sites paid for by Nerium to recruit, you don’t see a lot of this rational and reasoned approach – you instead see a lot of hype and “it’s easy” and other get-rich-quickery. Maybe Debbie will join us in condemning that sort of network marketing based on dreams of pennies falling from heaven.

  47. Doug says:

    Very little in life is black and white. I don’t dispute the very sincere “opinions” shared on this website by the author of the posts and those commenting. The fact is you can find similar websites discussing displeasure with WalMart, Sears, Apple, FedEx, and any number of large corporations most of us patronize at one time or another. However, if you were to go to these complaint sites you might be persuaded to stop doing business with some of them. Would that be wise? Would the skewed opinions on those sites be 100% fair, accurate, or void of ulterior motives?

    I’m not a Nerium distributor nor have I tried their product. I do know personally people who work at Nerium at the corporate level and as independent distributors and none of them are greedy predators waiting to pounce on the next gullible victim. They believe they have a good product and they’ve had personal results with it.

    Anytime I see someone go after a company with this kind of aggression I look for motive. Of course the site owner usually claims to be concerned for the health and/or welfare of the consumer and is just looking out for us. That is true in some cases, but in my experience (retired journalist and investigative reporter) there are usually hidden agendas and motives.

    I also wince at the implication that if one MLM is bad they all are. In my current profession I work with many of these companies to supply business owners with tax help. I’ve seen the good, the bad, and the hideous in the industry but I can verify there are some very good companies with extremely good products out there. I’ve investigated and researched the MLM business model and find it to be a valid business model and one with very low start up and operation costs. There is no other model I know of that has the financial upside of MLM with such a small investment, usually less than $2000 per year.

    I realize there are unscrupulous people in MLM at all levels just as there are in all levels of business in general. There are horror stories for sure, but they also cross all levels of business and industry.

    So, take any “complaint” site with a grain of salt. Seek the good and the bad and weigh the information before making a decision on any business venture. It is vitally important to realize failure in business is common and most successful business people have a number of failures in their experience folders.

    Just my 2 cents.

    • Drgeorge says:

      Points well taken, Doug, and not much to disagree with. Please be mindful, however,that the thrust of the Nerium series and the reason it was started had to do with the premise of the product – a poisonous plant being researched as a cancer treatment by a prestigious research organization “accidentally” leads to a revolutionary anti-aging skincare product. Still waiting to hear about the mechanism of action that accomplishes that without damaging normal tissue or cells. The go to market strategy is a secondary issue and one that crops up only because no one seens to want to focus on the science, only on how much money ten layers of people can make. BFT is totally in support of free commerce, not so much in using shoddy science and ficticious connections to a respectable research institution as a premise to sell product to unwary consumers. You might want to go back and look at our very first postings to understand why we even feel we have a dog in this fight.

  48. Sara D. says:

    I was approached to use Nerium at a cafe near my work. I was desperate to do something about my inflamed, dry, spotted and scarred acne skin. Actually, I was about to start Accutane having just finished my second round of blood and pregnancy tests, but I was nervous about all the side effects. I took a sample from the Nerium woman and decided to hold off on Accutane for a few days to try this product. Well, believe it or not and I don’t really care if you don’t, but my skin looks f-ing amazing!!! Scars and dark spots disappearing, smooth fresh skin, pimples cleared!!! … PS I love that they don’t test on animals (I’m a vegan) and $90 a month is way cheaper and easier than going on heavy duty acne pills that are super $$$ and require so blood work every month
    Let’s remind everyone…oleander is also “heavy duty” and a known cause of miscarriage
    Special Precautions & Warnings:
    It’s UNSAFE for anyone to take oleander by mouth.
    There isn’t enough information to know whether or not it is safe to apply oleander to the skin. It’s best not to do this.
    But oleander is especially dangerous for people with the following conditions:
    Pregnancy and breast-feeding: Taking oleander by mouth might cause an abortion. There isn’t enough information to know whether or not it is safe for pregnant or breast-feeding women to apply oleander to the skin. Stay on the safe side and avoid use.

    Source: WebMD

  49. kkane says:

    I have a friend who is now a Nerium brand partner. When she told me it is from the Oleander plant, I was astonished. Oleander is poison. Why would I put it on my skin? Next thing we know someone will make a skin care line from castor beans, heaven forbid, and start up another MLM. Yikes! I need to turn my friend onto this site. I don’t want to burst her bubble, but where is the real, honest science behind Nerium?

  50. OregonGirl says:

    My friend told me a few weeks ago when I ran into her at the market that she had a business idea she wanted to talk tome about. Well she finally told me. It’s this great skin care product called Nerium, it tightens and lifts and heals scaring etc…. Being someone who KNOWS that our skin is our largest organ and what we put on it becomes assimilated like anything we would put in our mouth I only put whole food based natural and organic products on my skin….so I asked her if she knew the ingredients. She did say there were some preservatives, but no parabens, and it’s mostly based on Oleander. What Oleander!!! Oleander is a poison, I grew up in California where Oleander grows prolifically and I remember my mom telling me to be careful to never make any of my flower teas with the Oleander. Of course I was very skeptical and told her I would research it as I already have a fabulous organic food based product with active plant stem cells and Chlorella growth factor and an anti-oxident blend of super fruits and herbs that I absolutely love and is super affordable and donates 5% of sales to Bright Pink. I asked how much hers cost and she said $80 a month on auto ship!!! That seems way over priced to me. The most expensive product in the brand I use (Acure), available at my local store, is $26 and it’s already lasted me 2 months, the other products range around $15….and why would I want to spend $80 a month on face cream made from poison??? I think I need to have a serious talk to her, she’s a smart woman but her decision to affiliate with this seems just plain dumb! Thanks for your blog, was very helpful in informing me about Nerium.

  51. Peter says:

    Hi and thanks for your critical review of this company. It parallels many other direct marketing companies in its focus on a marketing structure supported by a product story.

    Terrific work has been performed in both meta analysis and clinical evaluation by M.D. Anderson in the areas of complimentary medicine. So-to have other institutions such as the Brown Cancer Center at U. of Louisville, The Johns-Hopkins University Medical Center, University of Maryland, University of Connecticut, etc, etc. Much of this work has been supported by grants from the National Academies, NIH and other discrete government agencies.

    I would say that, far-and-away, the most promising work with herbal cancer therapies at M.D. Anderson has been the work surrounding curcumin isolates.

    This company would have at least a scintilla of credibility if their product was actually a hands-on result of work by recognized clinicians. Instead, like many MLM’s their product is a derivative leap or extrapolation of research conducted by third parties. This is as egregious as using in-vitro data as a substitute for in-vivo clinicals.

    Keep up the good work.

  52. help says:

    It seems my entire small town has drank the koolaid. Even my mom has been bombarding me with her marketing strategies regarding Nerium. Her skin “looks amazing.” I “just won’t believe how good she looks.” and “people are asking me what I’m doing.” And she’s only been using it for a week or two maybe? I found my “out” as I’m breastfeeding and don’t want to unknowingly poison my child….but I’m still being begged to host parties….which I don’t feel good about. As soon as I bring up the MANY excuses and reasons I have for not wanting to do so, I am met with hostility…from my own mother! I was raised to be respectful and I truly love my parents, but I don’t know how to tell her she has been duped, without sounding like I’m steamrolling her excitement. I hate MLMs, but I especially hate when they come from my mom. It’s easy to distance yourself from friends or acquaintances or total strangers who approach you with this stuff…but how are you supposed to talk to your family?Think I might end up paying my mom $100 a month to leave me alone? grr…

    • Drgeorge says:

      When the Nerium mania dies down, a lot of relationship will have been damaged. I don’t know what is worse – manipulating family and friends for a buck, or the mendacity it takes to fleece total strangers by telling falsehoods online to get people to click to your brand partner website. A very experienced and knowledgable esthetician I know recently attended a Nerium party to see what the buzz was all about. As she described it ” there was two or three minutes on the story about cancer research and MD Anderson and the accidental finding, then 45 minutes of Nerium pep rally. When she tried to interject questions about science she was dismissed as a doubting Thomas by a very condescending host. The whole thing was very “disturbing”.

    • drjohn says:

      That is so sad. Thanks for sharing your story – maybe it will prevent somebody else’s mom from heading down the same path as yours.
      Note to moms of the world – please think twice before you put your children into this kind of a “Sophies choice”.

  53. Michelle S says:

    I just ordered this through a long time family friend. I did the autoship since I would save $30 a bottle and it had a 30 day money back claim. He did send me the five day sample pack (the product does smell weird) and I havent had any results 1 week in (I took pictures with my iPhone). After reading everything here I will return the bottle and cancel the autoship. I did put it on a credit card just in case getting a refund would be problematic. After shipping and handling the autoship is almost $100 :( I’m glad I found this website!

  54. Stone Age says:

    Comments after each statement beginning with ****

    Lie #1: MLM is a business offering better opportunities for making large sums of money than all other conventional business and professional models. Truth: For almost everyone who invests MLM turns out to be a losing financial proposition. This is not an opinion, but a historical fact. Consider some notable examples from among the largest MLMs.

    (we edited out more of these lie/truth contrasts, because they are published elsewhere. Eds.)

    I found this site because I was looking for the ingredients they put in. Something about this product disturbs me and I’m trying to find out what… As far as the MLM business model??? It’s no better or worse than the myriad other business opportunities out there. you will do well if you are prepared to SELL. If you don’t SELL, then you won’t do well in ANY business.

    Just my 2 cents.

    Unlike businesses not based on recruiting people into a pyramid (because they after all are the real source of income), an MLM forces you you become part of the plan that brings in others below you, of whom more than 98% will fail, and be hurt financially. You need to sear your conscience first, because you know you will be hurting people, some your friends and family, according to the historical facts. Some would call this evil.

  55. CEB says:

    Hi, I was approached by someone trying to sell/ recruit me to into Nerium. When I 1st looked this up, I couldn’t find anything about it. Thanks for this review, also please go onto, there are plenty more reviews on this. And if you really like this product, buy it on ebay, there are many people trying unload their excess supplies. And BTW, almost all pyramid scheme products are on ebay for below the companies so called wholesale costs. I could never sell something to friends and family that they could get cheaper elsewhere in good faith.

    • drjohn says:

      Wow, you are right. There is tons of it being sold on ebay, and cheap. Bids start at $1.50. But it now for $40. Why would anyone pay $100? Could it be that the pyramid is already collapsing?
      Attention all Nerium Brand Partners, here is a conscience check, as suggested by CEB… would you sell Nerium at retail price to a friend (or your Mom!) knowing they could get it for way less than that on ebay?

  56. AmbitiousBlonde says:

    I just want to give my true critique of the product. I am not against MLMs as I think many are very legitimate and I am involved with one, though it has nothing to do with skin care so this is my unbiased opinion.
    I have seen tons of before & after pictures posted on facebook, from people that I have been acquainted with in the past. I did not believe the pictures as they seemed so dramatically changed. Obviously many taken in different lighting & w/ & w/o makeup. Someone contacted me about the Nerium opportunity. He assured me that these pictures were real & that they were not photoshopped. He could only rave about how amazing the product was and how he wanted me to join him. I will not promote any product that I do not believe in. So, I told him to send me a sample and I would give it a try & if it was all that these pictures showed, I would definitely consider it.
    I did find this site during this time as I was looking for any type of red flags prior to receiving my product and to also educate myself more about the company & the ingredients & how this came to be such an amazing new finding. He was kind enough to send me a full size sample, that I was to use for 30 days. I was to take pictures before hand & then a few days later.
    I watched a youtube videos from a “Neirum Brand Partner” aestheticians on how to properly apply it, what products to avoid when using it. You are to avoid any type of products, with salicylic acid, & alpha hydroxy acids & a few more that are mostly found in anti-aging products. It does have a really funky smell, I had a hard time sleeping the first few nights, but then I got used to it, though, it never really grew on me. I’m 49 yo & have always taken care of my skin & did work with a skin care company in the early 2000s, so I am very aware of how products effect my skin. I have some fine lines around my eyes & lips & a small age spot by my eye. I applied it nightly for 30 days and did not see one benefit to my skin. My skin to me was actually dryer, when I smiled it seemed that my wrinkles were more pronounced and my foundation did not look as flawless on my skin as it did prior to using. It also made my eyes burn even though I only applied up to my orbital bone, as directed. (Another flag from the pictures as many show results as impressive as eye lid lifts)
    I contacted him and told him, I understand that others appear to be having miraculous results, but I would not be able to promote something that I wasn’t totally in love with myself.
    I do not know for sure if those pictures are real that are being promoted out there. I have not had any contact with the company as I did not give any of my information to them. I can only give my unbiased comment about the NeriumAD product and for the price, I would give it a 2 out of a 10.

    • Barbara says:

      Finally a decent and apparently honest opinion of this product. I too see more lines and am dryer but I do see fading of spots and smaller pores. I’m at 3 weeks. …. I give it a 5 out of 10. Not as happy with this as with my free samples of La Mer, but that is unsustainable $$$.

  57. Marh says:

    Seems like anyone who would spend this much time in bashing a product and opportunity that they feel they have to bash it appears very threatened. I dislike a lot of products around the world. I would never spend one minute making a web site unless I felt they were going to take food off my families table. God Bless y ou! I am sorry you feel so threatened by the success of Nerium.

    • Drgeorge says:

      This blogsite was started long before Nerium appeared on our radar. If you look into the content of BFT, there is much more that has nothing whatsoever to do with Nerium. Our mission is truth telling so products that are good are applauded and those that are built on hype and unsound science get the reviews they deserve. Education about the science of skincare in general and holding the industry’s feet to the fire so the consumer has a fighting chance is what we seek. Nerium is just the poster child of the day, in large measure because the business is nearly all pep rally with thus far no rational science to support it. As scientists, even “accidental” findings have a valid scientific foundation. We are still waiting to hear what that is for Nerium. The business model is troubling because so much of it is concerned with recruiting brand partners. Whatever happened to selling a good product and building a business on primarily that?

  58. mary says: I found Dr. Newman for you!!!! You’re welcome…… ;-)

    • drjohn says:

      Our friend mary sends us a link the video in which Newman states things like “as a pharmacologist I know how important it is to know how these things work, to gather and publish data” … yada yada. Nice words, but the only thing published about how Nerium works says that it’s key ingredient (phenolic glycosides of the Nerium oleander plant) is a cell poison, causes apoptosis (cell death), and is good for killing cancer cells. Not a peep out of this company about how it works to remove wrinkles. Certainly no published data on how it works as a cosmeceutical. What Dr. Newman didn’t say but should have it that there is a sequence to all this. You don’t release a product until you do have that knowledge of how it works. So, sorry folks, but this is just more spin. Put a kindly tone and nice professorial face on it, but at the end of the day its all just lipstick on a pig. I wish Dr Newman would accept our invitation to debate this here in a public forum. That would demonstrate his sincerity and lead me to believe he actually believes what he says in the video. Meanwhile we remain highly skeptical.

  59. Not Impressed says:

    I am still trying this product. After 5 days I see no change other than I have reddened and flaking areas and itching around my upper lip and mouth. I find the smell very pleasant, not at all offensive as listed previously. In fact, my husband commented not knowing I had applied any product, “God, you smell good.” And I am NOT a Nerium partner. I do not see the benefit and will return my sample bottle. No pressure from my partner at all. Will check back in again if anything goes awry.

  60. madi says:

    I bought a bottle after a friend of mine said it cured her acne in 5 days. I am 25 and had pretty severe acne since I was 14. I have tried everything: lasers, microdermabrasion, antibiotics, retinol, pretty much everything.

    It’s only been a week but I have seen a significant decrease in my acne.

    I was skeptical at first to put an anti-aging night cream on my acne but I have to say so far its been really good. If this still works in 60 days I will definitely recommend it.

    I have to say the Multi level marketing part of this product is really annoying. When you buy a bottle online they automatically make you a website for you to sell to other people even though you don’t want to. BUTTTTT having said that it really does seem to be working on my acne.

    • Chris Kelly says:

      You are given the website so that if you have positive results and you want to share this amazing product with other people, you can earn your product for FREE every month, only paying for shipping. It is a customer reward program, nothing more, nothing less. If you don’t want to share it and would prefer to pay for it each month, that’s totally okay! But we like to keep our customers happy in every way that we are able and who doesn’t like FREE?

      I am so glad this is working for your skin.

      • Drgeorge says:

        Your choice of words is interesting: “Given the website” & “share this amazing product”.

        So you’re saying one doesn’t sell to others and hope they sell to others for as many layers as possible? Instead, according to you, one shares the product and the sharing process continues (hopefully ad infinitum) for as many layers as possible so that everyone can share in the Nerium miracle – the pecuniary returns are just the universe’s karmic reward for being so sharing. Of course, the people who shared first should get the most rewards – that’s how the universe works, right?

        My son’s close acquaintance who just joined the pep rally has evidently got a different take on how he is sharing. Last week, via facebook, he mentioned to his friends he was conducting a once hourly conference call so he could SHARE his joy about how much money can be made. Paraphrasing: “This thing is going to globally explode, get on board now to get the best seat on the moneymaking train.”

        Nerium definitely serves some pretty tasty Kool-Aid.

  61. Drgeorge says:

    Madi, pleased to hear your acne has improved but that is what one might expect from an active ingredient that has potential lethality to cells, as the oleandrin in the nerium oleander plant has demonstrated in laboratory cultures against cancer. Benzoyl peroxide, the active in most anti-acne medications, works by killing off the bacteria that is associated with acne, Propionibacterim acnes. These tiny little critters are extremely likely to also be susceptible to toxic effects from nerium, and prove it by dying off. (BFT has not studied this but it is entirely consistent with the known mechanism of action of oleandrin.)

    This does not earn it a pass as far as an anti-aging ingredient however. Your acne improves because the bacteria are being killed. Next door the lady’s fine lines are perhaps improving (as is claimed) because her cells are being injured and edema (swelling) is occurring, just not injured enough to die off…yet. In either event, are you willing to pay the price of improved acne now (there are other ways to treat it) at the possible risk of longer term pro-aging effects from chronic inflammation the NeriumAD might be causing.. That’s BFT’s opinion until the Nerium folk provide evidence we are wrong.

    Wearing our daytime hats, the docs at BFT are working on new products to address acne in a new way but that is a discussion for another day.

    WOW!!! BFT is amazed to hear that Nerium now makes customers a brand partner whether they want to or not…that’s pretty aggressive, make that ballsy, marketing.

  62. Serity says:

    All I can say is thank you for giving it straight up. I googled reviews and received only reviews from members. It wasn’t until I placed “don’t join nerium” in the search engine, I finally found your site that had an honest opinion and logical information. I’m an Esthetcian, so results driven by substantial research, is all that matters to me; not a bunch of hype. I survived the Amway craze years ago and learned a valuable lesson……RUN.

    • CB says:

      Very nice to find this. I actually almost got sucked it to nerium too. I actually work in direct sales and I am a leader with A INCREDIBLE company and my earnings are roughly 60,000 70,000, yet I still almost got sucked in to nerium. For 3 weeks I was a wreck. constantly thinking of how me, a single mom, could come up with $500 to inves. i WOULD STAY up all night n the internet searching for info, wake up and rush to the bathroom to see if any wrinkles disappeared and last but not least, constantly trying to figure out how I could do this and hide it from my other company. I was so obsessed it drained me.
      Then one day I finally said I am done, i have to many doubts. As soon as I decided I am going to tell my friend I cant do it and I don’t want to spend anymore time on it, I got a call from her upline telling me that I should consider pawning something to make the $500 investment. I would surely get the investment back. I was shocked, appalled and embarrassed for my friend. I cannot believe she would allow him to suggest this to me.
      some of y thoughts on nerium
      1. it softens the skin and evens it out because your putting a cream on every night obsessively and you don’t dare miss a night. now if you were not using a night creme before nerium, daily, well hellooo, of course your skin is going to show signs of improvement!
      2. Its a really bad addiction, like coffee . you wake up and race to the mirror and you think your skin looks better so you keep using.
      3. The company has only been out a year, that’s why before this blog there was no negative feedback. It takes some time people.
      4. Yes, its the new kid on the block, but one thing to think about when choosing a company to work with. If someone try’s nerium and doesn’t like it, they will never try it again and word of mouth travels fast. Now you sell something like pampered chef or partylite or ,there is a new product every 6 months therefore you may comeback for something else. Do you get my drift.

      I spent countless hours on research not much to find outside people who sell it
      . Conclusion why do I need to do all this reseacrh in the first place. I didn’t have to do that with my main business.

      Oh, and need I mention I know longer have a relationship with two very close networking friends. I even told one of the I liked her better when she sold sendoutcards. I really do miss her. sorry about my typos. I hate writing emails.

  63. Sidi Patel says:

    I am very entertained by the hilarious commentary provided on the subject of Nerium.
    Simply amazing how easily the brain dead buy into negative BS.
    Results don’t lie. If someone says they have experienced no results, one of several things occurred. The most common 1. No close up picture before using, and of course no after picture (the comments I saw were indicative of that simple
    omission) you didn’t get older, more wrinkled or sun damaged overnight and the eye can’t see what was there before
    But the camera can.
    2. The “user” didn’t use it.
    3. The prospect doesn’t want to buy anything for whatever reason and after their psuedo test say “it doesn’t work”.
    I am happy that those folks whom have demonstrated their sheep like willingness to immerse themselves in negative, false innuendo are not involved in Nerium and frankly it’s quite obvious they are not remotely business minded nor capable of independent thought much less coming to an independent decision.
    Guess someone has to bag the groceries.

    • drjohn says:

      Sidi clearly believes it is impossible for anyone to not believe in Nerium. If you fall into that category you must be “brain dead” and you can never rise above a certain caste (which he identifies as grocery bagger). I’ll leave it to you loyal readers to provide Sidi with a reality check on that one.

      • mary says:

        No Drjohn,
        What I understood Sidi say was that “brain dead” people can’t/won’t follow simple instructions!! The first thing you see when you open up your box (preferred customer AND/OR brand partner) is one simple thing…..TAKE CLOSE UP PICS OF ALL YOUR PROBLEM AREAS BEFORE USING THE CREAM!!!!!!! Simple right? Apparently not simple enough for brain dead people who “can’t see any difference”!!!!!

        • drjohn says:

          Seems like Mary agrees with Sidi that you readers who have been telling the truth about your Nerium experiences must be “brain dead”. A case of absolutism. If you don’t believe in Nerium as your god (skin god or financial god) then you are defective (because the product/MLM cannot be). Nerium as the be all/end all. Get on board or be doomed to the lower caste grocery baggers. This drips with all sort of irony. And it suggests the perpetrators of all this have really created a cult. Any cult experts out there who might want to comment on this?

  64. Drgeorge says:

    This is an interesting tangent – if only the brain dead grocery baggers would take before and after photos to PROVE Nerium works. BFT has hypothesized, rightly so we think since no one has refuted it, that the early changes being seen may well be the result of sub-clinical damage and inflammatory changes that plump the skin with edema (fluid). Also, the formulation does include several other ingredients that can help hydrate and plump the skin.

    Being in the business of blogs and having looked around quite a bit, it is apparent that people who know science and products well, are not the least bit interested in trying Nerium. Take a stroll around the beauty/comsmetics/skincare blogosphere and try to find one laudatory comment about Nerium,or someone recommending it to serious skincare afficionados. The people who truly know and roam that part of the internet are discerning and not likely to fall under the try it quick and get rich rhetoric that seems to make up 99+ of the argument for trying this product. We’re still waiting for the link between the purported active, the accidental discovery, and a plausible scientific explantion.

    The photo issue is truly a red herring. The young man who is a friend of our family posted his before and after pictures on Facebook only three or four days after drinking the Nerium Kool-Aid and starting to use the product. My daughter said it best: “Dad, it looks like his face is swollen, look at his eyelids especially.” She was right. So what do before and after pictures prove? Nothing about a valid mechanism of action that may in fact be deleterious over the long run.

    Hey, all you Nerium-o-philes, why do you suppose the scientific and commercial gurus promoting this product are not engaging in a scientific debate with BFT? Too busy, don’t know about us, still doing super secret research they don’t want to disclose? More likely, they have nothing to say and hope we’ll just go away. We know they are aware. Our analytics program enables us to see them log in, read the latest, and then depart, all in real time. Hey, Nerium Brass, want to discuss this openly? Just think, if you prove BFT is in error, you can issue another big press release about it and get more brand partners.

  65. mary says:

    You keep asking for Neriums secrets even though they’re still patent pending, so why not give out your secrets???? C’mon man!! Oh wait, lemme guess, this post won’t be posted right…?LMAO…like my other posts!! Figures!!

    • drjohn says:

      Hi Mary, no…we approve whatever comments we think have probative value in the debate at hand. We of course reserve the right to edit (we have some standards here at BFT). Looks like most of your comments we don’t actually see because our SPAM filter has tagged you as an spammer/advertiser (e.g. when you put in URL’s to your site), or some other reason (e.g. bad language, repeating, etc). You do seem to be spending more time on BFT than we do (we can see your URL and visit count in our analytics program) which may have something to do with why you are being tagged. Sorry about that. I guess we need to thank your for driving up our daily stats which keeps us at the top of the Google searches on nerium! You are doing the public a good service :)

      The patent issue is of interest. I don’t think we have really aired that. Patent pending means that a company has submitted a patent application, but it has not been approved by the patent office. Nerium only has one patent pending. You can look it up, and suggest you do. Here is a link to patent application # 20100092585

      The first claim is the only really important one, and the rest just spin off that. Here it is:. “A method of extracting cardiac glycosides, comprising: intermixing a cardiac glycoside plant species with aloe under conditions selected to form an extraction mixture; conditioning the extraction mixture under conditions selected to extract cardiac glycosides from said cardiac glycoside plant species to thereby form a conditioned extraction mixture, wherein the conditioned extraction mixture comprises residual cardiac glycoside plant species and a cardiac glycoside aloe mixture; separating at least a portion of the cardiac glycoside aloe mixture from the residual cardiac glycoside plant species to thereby form a cardiac glycoside aloe extract, wherein the cardiac glycoside aloe extract comprises cardiac glycosides extracted from said cardiac glycoside plant species; and wherein said cardiac glycoside aloe extract is substantially free of the residual cardiac glycoside plant species. ”

      This is nothing more than a new method to extract cardiac glycosides from nerium plants using aloe instead of water or alcohol. Not really much of a leap forward in technology, is it. But this is what is really interesting — it is the cardiac glycosides that are the poisonous part of the nerium oleander plant. That part that can make your heart stop. So if you have a better way of extracting it, what does that give you? A better way to concentrate a poisonous substance. One which has been touted also as a terrific cytotoxin (killer) for cancer cells.

      This patent fails (as does every bit of information out of Nerium Biotechnology) to explain why a known cytotoxin would have beneficial anti-aging qualities for skin. We only know of one way (causing a defensive cellular survival reaction, which leads to all sorts of problems later, is is in fact pro-aging instead of anti-aging). Until someone comes up with another explanation for mechanism of action, this is our working hypothesis.

  66. Robert says:

    Setting the record straight… MD Anderson & Nerium

  67. ibasq says:

    isn’t aloe an anti-inflammatory?

    • drjohn says:

      Yes, aloe vera is an anti-inflammatory, although a mild one. So, you are maybe thinking that the real active ingredient in Nerium ADS is the aloe vera? That’s a pretty good hypothesis. The magnitude of skin changes is in about the same range as aloe vera. The key difference is price. You can buy 99% pure aloe vera for $0.25 per ounce, vs. $89 for Nerium AD. That’s a 35,600% markup.

  68. J.M. Garcia says:

    I have been approached several times by a facebook friend to sell this product, I have done my research and found that this MLM based company is trying to hock a miracle product that really provides no miracles. I just sent this friend this link and wanted to say thank you to the Docs and BFT for doing such great work. You’ve found a fan in me!

    • Degeorge says:

      Not everyone heeds our caution but that’s their choice. A family friend is pitching Nerium on his Facebook even after speaking with me about our questions about the science. He evidently went full steam ahead figuring the time to make money is now and he wasn’t going to be left behind. He was espousing the same old party line about the “accidental” finding and the cancer research at MD Andersonn. Gotta hand it to ‘em, the Nerium folks have the “pitch” down pitch-perfect.

  69. ibasq says:

    i thought aloe was more than just a mild anti-inflammatory. how would that contribute to your theory that nerium is inflammaging?

    • drjohn says:

      Aloe is mild anti-inflammatory (it might cost more if it was more so) while oleandrin is a potent cytotoxin (killing cells is by it’s very nature is quite inflammatory). It’s not a theory, just a conjecture following from your previous comment. We would love to have it affirmed or denied should someone want to supply us with data. Or even just discussed, should anyone have a different perspective.

  70. Tara says:

    Modern Day Snake Oil. (with a slick futuristic package that is yet another deception of both quantity & quality ) I have lost a friend to the Nerium Network to Nowhere. I wonder if she even notices? I wonder if there are Intervention Programs? She was the last friend to call me when my beloved Dog passed away and after 2 lines of Condolences, I got the Nerium Opportunity download once again. Is this a Cult or a Company? When am I going to see those miraculous results? lol. This is definitely NOT a product for REALISTS and people born without the Denial Tuner Dial.
    Your article was extremely accurate and well researched on all points. I do hope that future Neriumites actually READ it in it’s entirety before buying into the hype.
    p.s. don’t even TRY it and try to save $ on that auto ship! because you might spend the rest of your lifetime trying to CANCEL. Every time that package arrives at the door, it makes me feel like I’ve been mugged.

  71. Brittney says:

    So I was just wondering what your thoughts were about other MLM companies….?? Like MaryKay, Scentsy, Premier Jewelry and many others…they are well known companies and very successful.

    • Lazy Gardens says:

      Brittany – The companies may be doing OK, but the distributors are losing money.

      See for details.

      Barefaced Docs … that’s not an MLM link

    • CEB says:

      I think you can get it on ebay, from people that couldn’t make a living selling it, for considerably less.

      • drjohn says:

        Thanks for the heads up. I just bid $1.04, and I am the current top bidder. More than a hundred auctions. My auction closes today. Wish me luck! Why would anyone buy from a BP with these prices. Why don’t the BP’s restock here? I love an open marketplace!

  72. Maui Maid says:

    The Nerium AD product made my entire brow droop in only four evenings of use. It is uncomfortable and unsightly as there is skin pushing down on my eye lid. I have never had a problem with a face cream before. Their customer service was the isolate and blame the victim variety. I am extremely unhappy with both the product and service.

    • Drgeorge says:

      Edema (swelling) could do that. BFT wonders if you followed the Nerium instruction to take “before” and “after” pictures; failure to do so, according to one pro-Nerium poster on this website, would qualify you as a “brain dead grocery bagger.”

    • drjohn says:

      Maui Maid, if this doesn’t resolve in a day or two, you should see a physician. Please keep in touch and let us know how this turns out.

  73. DavidH says:

    My wife and I were both duped by the Nerium “scam.” I am in the process of trying to get my refund. After half a dozen emails to the company I was “authorized” to send back the “Success Pack.” I will probably not see a refund. One of the unfortunate things in this fiasco is that we got two other people involved in this mess. One of them is getting a meager refund of $77.00, despite the company stated policy of refunding 90%. I wish I’d been more careful.

    We were convinced into this mess by a long time friend of my wife. The clever marketing that promises great rewards is a sham. If one is not a cut throat salesperson, it’s a lose, lose situation. This is a heartless quest for money. Snake oil is what it is.

    How is this company flooding Google, Yahoo, and other search engines with so many positive reviews? I smell a rat.

    • Anonymous says:

      Just the other day, I had occasion to listen to a company conference call at the suggestion of an acquaintance. It was amazing to listen for nearly an hour and hear “this product is the real thing”, and that was it as far as science and proof was concerned about this breakthrough product. All the other thousands of words from speaker after speaker were about making money and how to get people to your “events” and “parties” and confernce calls to “share” product with them and get them on the bandwagon. “Get three people to buy and your product is free.” Do that for multiple generations and ipads, new cars, and untold riches are yours.

  74. JLS says:

    I appreciate your differentiation between direct-selling as a method of delivering products vs. MLM. I was previously sold on the “dream” of an MLM only to be left discouraged and depleted after working non-stop for over two years. I felt like a stalker. I’ve been involved in a direct-selling company for over three years with great success, and YES….much more than 70% of our sales come from the home party, hence party-plan company. I have recently lost several of my team members to Nerium. I wish them well, but I fear they will be victims of that which you speak. These are women I care deeply about. In the end, if something sounds “too good to be true” it most likely is. If you want to be a direct-seller, you need to accept that, like any other profession, you need to put forth the effort necessary to see success. In some cases, you need to bust your ass. But while the grass seems greener someplace else, remember, you will need to water that too. With MLM, it usually costs you friendships. Party-plan typically gets you out of that “warm” market and takes you distances you never imagined. You get paid to “sell” … not “buy” and build up debt.

  75. DavidH says:

    At this juncture I am waiting to see what my “refund” will be. My wife has lost a friend of 40 years to Nerium’s MLM cult.

    I’d like to say something in regard to the alleged research. Nerium’s research is, it seems, illegitimate, by acceptable scientific standards. There is no peer reviewed research I can find on the Internet. I’d like to be able to search through a University library article data base to see what would come up about the scientific research on this product. Where is the “real science?” Nerium doesn’t provide any actual research documentation on there website.

    In way of clarification, I’m a historian/teacher, who was well trained in social science history research. In any academic field the only “real” research that is considered valid in any field is peer reviewed primary source research. In the scientific fields, such as chemistry and biochemistry, we would expect to find several articles on such a breakthrough, and the scientists involved would be happy to have us read their articles.

    It’s a pretty safe bet that there is no such research on this product.

    • drjohn says:

      Hi DavidH,

      To be fair and complete, there is peer-reviewed research published by Dr Newman, the well-publicized “discoverer” of Nerium AD, But none of it addresses anti-aging or other benefits to skin. The focus of the work has been cancer. The key findings appear to be that oleandrin induces apoptosis (programmed cell death) in malignant cells and induces growth inhibition in human tumor cells (1). In human pancreatic tumor cells, where cell death is by autophagy (suicidal self consumption) rather than apoptosis, and oleandrin at very low nanomolar concentrations potently inhibits cell proliferation by inducing a profound cell cycle arrest, and signs of mitochondrial damage (2). In human melanoma cells, oleandrin causes reactive oxygen species leading to mitochondrial condensation, and the superoxide anions are associated with with a loss in cellular viability and growth inhibition (3).

      But we con concur with you in that we can find no peer reviewed research that would inform us why oleandrin (or similar extracts containing cardiac glycosides) would be beneficial to skin. Perhaps such evidence exists but they have chosen to not reveal it. But then we (and the scientific community) are left to ponder the seeming paradox wherein a substance that causes massive oxidative stress, slows growth, and leads to cell death by apoptosis or autophagy (at least in the cells studied by Dr Newman) can reverse signs of aging in skin. Now maybe there is a good explanation of the mechanism of beneficial action, but after months of requesting any information (we and others) there has been nothing forthcoming. You would think if such evidence existed they would want it to be become public, if for no reason other than to counter these scientific concerns. We would certainly welcome any such information, and stand ready provide a platform for its dissemination, as we have broadcast many times. In the meantime, we are already on record in stating that we respect Dr Newman’s work in oleandrin and cancer.

      1.Determinants of human and mouse melanoma cell sensitivities to oleandrin. Lin Y, Dubinsky WP, Ho DH, Felix E, Newman RA. Integr Cancer Ther. 2007 Dec;6(4):354-64.

      2. Autophagic cell death of human pancreatic tumor cells mediated by oleandrin, a lipid-soluble cardiac glycoside. Newman RA, Kondo Y, Yokoyama T, Dixon S, Cartwright C, Chan D, Johansen M, Yang P. J Exp Ther Oncol. 2008;7(3):195-205.

      3. Oleandrin-mediated oxidative stress in human melanoma cells. Newman RA, Yang P, Hittelman WN, Lu T, Ho DH, Ni D, Chan D, Vijjeswarapu M, Cartwright C, Dixon S, Felix E, Addington C.J Exp Ther Oncol. 2006;5(3):167-81.

      These are just three of a dozen or more papers from Dr. Newman’s group dealing with this topic.

      • DavidH says:

        I’ve read about the research in relation to certain cancers. However, I cannot find the research in relation to anti aging of human skin. I’ve just finished a couple of hours going through the UC MELVYL library search system. I only found one abstract that mentioned “Nerium Biotechnology,” and that was in relation to liver poisoning.

        Thanks for keeping the record straight on Dr. Newman’s research. I’m going to continue to dig around at various university libraries.

        If it would be alright with you I’d like to post a brief outline of what defines a cult in social science/historical terms.


    • Lazy Gardens says:

      David – is your friend.

      You can research all kinds of things there, including finding out how much research has been done on something, and when.

  76. drjohn says:

    Brittney, we are all about science, not business models.

    My personal non-expert opinion is that MLM’s too often are pyramid schemes that end up hurting people (especially those who are late to join.). I didn’t make that idea up – people with financial and legal having expertise been talking and writing about MLM’s for nearly a century. MLM’s may get hit with class action suits (e.g. NuSkin, who lost one), and some have even been charged under RICO (racketeering) laws.

    Companies with an MLM business model can be well known, and even very successful, but that alone doesn’t assure me that they are doing the right thing in a moral sense. I get most upset by the rather striking data research findings stating that most people who sign on as sellers end up getting hurt financially, not rewarded. And they are often the people who can least afford to be hurt.

    There are plenty of resources out there that can better educate you about MLM’s than we can. Here are two:

    The second one takes it from a legal perspective. I found it very informative.

    Here is a third site, a virtual encyclopedia of everything MLM. The author of this site (Jon Taylor) seems to have earned the right to discuss MLM’s – he spent many years in them — and has written a book on the matter. This website contains abundant information, including tests of MLM “opportunities” that you can apply.

    From this site:

    Listed below are MLMs we have found to use recruitment-driven* and top-weighted pay plans, which is the case with virtually all MLMs. For a thorough discussion of problems associated with such programs, download and read the ebook The Case for and) against Multi-level Marketing – which can be downloaded in whole or in sections from this website. (one of the MLM’s evaluated and found to be so was Nerium).

    Go to this page to download the e-book (lots of detailed information).

  77. Tara says:

    [edited paragraph]

    I find it extremely humorous reading thru these posts the Neriumites who not only argue the Dr’s comments (who have dedicated their entire careers to medical research – you can google them ) but raise the flag defending a product they know nothing about because the results are not yet in. Wait until the long term reveals what Nerium AD has been glossing over – wonder what the Next Better Than Sliced Bread MLM will be. Hmmm ….

    My apologies to Tara, who is passionate and very well-reasoned in her arguments. But, regular readers know that I am not a fan of ad hominen arguments, even ones that are logical and not merely rants. So, I removed references to people and personalities and changed the referent frame to Nerium the company. I actually edited out an entire paragraph about top management. Sorry, Tara. Let’s try to stay focused on the ideas, not the persons. It’s the high road.

    • Drgeorge says:

      Your caution is well founded and consistent with our first impression about this product after no one could explain the science. From the outset it appeared to be purely an opportunistic play because of the “hook” the MD Anderson Center cancer research story provided. The company started with that hook, which is very tenuous since MD Anderson has disavowed any relationship with the Nerium team and does not vouch for the product in any way. Whether the product has enough oleandrin in it to be detrimental at the cellular level is not clear although that potential is what concerns BFT (we already are onboard that systemic toxicity is probably not a concern.) the fact that “improvement” is seen within days by enough people to keep the buzz alive is hardly surprising, which may or may not have anything to do with the nerium oleander plant. The ingredient list contains known humectants and moisturizers. People with little or no experience in facial skincare can see changes that “prove” something is happening. Edema from subclinical injury can do the same thing. Throw in the greed factor and presto, friends tell friends and everyone gets an iPad or a Lexus…in theory, at least.

      An ex-brand partner recently provided Nerium sales materials to BFT. The DVDs were NOT watched as the printed material was more than enough to know the audio-visual material would only be more of the same. The content was 99.9% rah-rah-sis-boom-bah pep rally and repetitive descriptions and diagrams about how one can get paid at multiple levels, and .1% science…make that “alleged” science. It was the story about cancer research at MD Anderson, the “accidental” finding that lead to the “breakthrough” anti-aging technology. New brand partners are encouraged to consider every person they know as a potential customer / brand partner / and new member of the “thriving community of life-changers.”

  78. caroline valteau says:

    hello Drjohn and Drgeorge, i just got my oder of Nerium.. after reading all the posts on your website i am now so confused..i’m afraid to open the box. i wanted to try it for myself most especially for my 3 year old suffering from eczema. i just found out a week ago that she’s allergic to dairy products, egg whites and shrimp.. these foods is what’s causing eczema..
    i’m also still nursing dangerous is this cream for me and my daughter if i use it and apply it on her skin with eczema.
    is there anything u can recommend that would heal her eczema?

    thank you :)

    • drjohn says:

      Hi Caroline. We cannot give you medical advice over the internet. We can and will suggest that you check with a physician (e.g. your daughter’s pediatrician or an allergy specialist) before applying any topical product in the context you mention. Just in case the pediatrician is unaware of the contents of Nerium, you might want to bring with you an ingredients list.

      • caroline valteau says:

        Hi Drjohn, I have been to my daughter pediatrician and she prescribed Eletone. It seemed to work for a few weeks. But it wasn’t going away. I guess because we are eating all the foods thats causing her eczema. Since i just found out from her bloodtest she’s allergic from dairy, eggs and shrimp.. we just stopped eating them a weeek ago.. I also tried 100% shea butter got a liitle results.
        That’s why i wanted to try Nerium because I heard it works for eczema..And also it would be nice if it get rids of a few tiny lines under my eyes..Not that it bothers me so much..I think I have a pretty good skin for my age :)
        Since you were saying that Nerium kills cells and bad for your skin..Should I even bother to go show the ingredients to her doctor?

        • drjohn says:

          Hi caroline, we don’t definitively know that Nerium will kill your skin cells (we haven’t tested it). But we do know that the oleandrin (cardiac glycioside) extracts, which we all have been told forms the basis for Nerium AD (all that marketing stuff about MD Anderson and Dr Newman and the extraction patent) cause severe oxidative stress and will kill (by apoptosis) many types of cancer cells. Would skin cells be somehow immune to this effect? Nobody has show any data, but it’s a pretty good presumption that it would, as it works at the the mitchondrial level, through metabolic processes common to all cells, cancerous or not. We keep asking for data that might shed a different light, but have never seen any. So, arguing only from the available data, using pretty simple logic, we strongly suggest caution. Our worries are more about the long term effects not the immediate, in terms of anti-aging effects. And again, we cannot give you specific medical advise, but strongly recommend you not put oleander-derived anything on the skin of a child with eczema unless and until your child’s pediatrician specifically is aware of it and recommends you to do so. Skin with eczema is much more vulnerable than normal skin to all sorts of things. Please exercise all caution and do nothing before consulting with your physician.

  79. caroline valteau says:

    Thank You So Much for the insight Drjohn….I have been a flight attendant for almost 20 yrs and I have tried everything out there from skin care, make-up and perfumes made in USA, Japan, France, Philippines and so on.. We are always expose to shopping..Since I had a child at 39yrs old I did alot of pampering and taking care of myself and well being.
    After 10 years I was into everything organic and eating organic foods.. I learned that having great skin and looking younger is you live a happy peaceful life, healthy lifestyle and let your body follow the rhythm of nature..Regardless of what your ethnic background..Because of my line of work I have met people of different nationality with great skin and look younger than their age.
    I only use moisturizer with suncreen in it..And every now and then I get a facial treatment..
    I’m 44yrs old but people telll me all the time I look like I’m in my early 30’s or mid 30..I hope they are telling truth..:) LOL..
    Sometimes they even say mid 20’s..That I’m not sure I believe..Hahaha..I’m truly flattered because my husband is 37yrs old.
    But I definitely think I’m aging gracefully.. So I’m gonna wait years to see if Nerium still doing well. It’s only been around since Sep. 2011.. I’m sure I will hear some new anti-aging by then..Flight attendants are very good in spreading the word to the world….
    Thanks again Drjohn..

    Peace and Much Love

  80. jaci joans says:

    I’m curious about something. Everyone on here seems to worry about what a plant does to skin cells but can you investigate the other chemicals in cosmetics and facial products? That would be helpful. I have researched the benefits of nerium, the actual element from the oleander plant, information that is separate from the company. It states that it is not harmful. I would like some sources to back your findings to help my research.


    • drjohn says:

      Not sure what you are asking. You can find a lot of research right here on BFT about some chemicals in cosmetics. We back it up with references to published studies. You are welcome to search around.

  81. haricot vert says:

    didja see this? XXXXX is fixin to strap you over his whipping barrel and forcibly XXXXX y’all. I’m sure gesticulating blowhards don’t impress you, but those guys have a lot more money than you. And you know who wins in the American legal system …..

    In the movies the good guys always win. We prefer the Disney version.

  82. DavidH says:

    You’ve made Nerium’s radar. They have a message about you on their Facebook page.

  83. ibasq says:

    Re: Oleandrin/apoptosis/skin cells

    Dr John.. you never responded about the report from the “Journal of Clinical Immunology” that I posted on the other thread that says “In this report we are providing the evidence that oleandrin induces apoptosis, not necrosis in tumor cells but not in primary cells”

    • drjohn says:

      I thought I did, but I will give you a much more detailed answer soon. Just busy with other things at the moment. I found some slides from Dr. Newman’s and others at MD Anderson that are quite helpful, and maybe its time to do a deep dive on the signalling cascade for apoptosis and how oleandrin fits in. Much is known. Including effects on epithelial cells.

    • drjohn says:

      “In summary, our results support the idea that inhibition of the Na+/K+-pump by CGs (cardiac glycosides) suppresses general protein synthesis in neoplastic as well as in normal human cells. Our study provides important insights for the basic as well as the clinical field of CG research and reinforces the notion that detailed mechanistic insights and solid evidence should be the basis for clinical intervention studies.” from: Perne A, Muellner MK, Steinrueck M, Craig-Mueller N, Mayerhofer J, et al. (2009)

    • Olive Sue says:

      I went to my first nerium gathering. I wasn’t too thrilled watching the DVD presentation since very little was on the skin care, rather mostly about getting your free bottle, iPad, and then a Lexus. I have the bottle for a 5 day trial. I felt a strong dislike for the entire presentation, but if I could actually improve my skin I was wiling to try it. After reading a lot of comments both pro & con, I’m not going to even finish my 5 days. I’m not convinced that it is safe. I knew from the presentation that it was a scam and some people way at the top are getting very rich off of many naive people. I’m vain enough to want less wrinkles though. My vanity stops when I’m not sure this product is safe and I NEVER would invite friends into my home for such stupid presentation that scream “sucker!”

  84. Lazy Gardens says:

    I’m enough of a photographer to recognise the lighting tricks used in the results gallery for neriumAD.

    I could shoot and upload shots – with no retouching – that could show the same results, just by controlling the lighting, filtering the lighting or the lens, and controlling the depth of field and the focus. I could get those “results” in a very short time, just enough time to change the lighting and slap on a filter.

    Before has harsh oblique light coming from above and behind that picks up the edges of the wrinkles and makes them prominent. After has a soft light coming from the right, with the crowsfeet area in shadow.

    If you check the focus by comparing the sharpness of the eyebrow and eyelash hairs, the After image is in softer focus. That can be as easy as putting a softening gauze over the lens, or getting a shallow depth of field and focusing on the eye to throw the rest of the face slightly out of focus.

    Good grief! Before is shot with a harsh light from above and to the right of the photo. The After is shot with a light from the front, which flattens out any wrinkles.

    I could continue, but this is the sort of cheap tricks that the wonder cream merchants like to use.

  85. Tina says:

    OMG i hated the smell of this, i feel awful and my boyfriend barely wanted to kiss me, i seen 0 results and i only baught it because my friend was trying to convince me it was cheaper and better then arbonne( which u buy a few items to get results its cost more BUT A WAY BETTER PRODUCT compared to this junk!) she bought into the buisness and said oh this guy got a lexus in 100 days, lol well shes a damn good sales person, but this stuff flopped its been 2 months and shes been trying to get me to buy into the company, lol i told her the stuff was worthless and i would rather spend a million bucks on a ton of products from walmart, avon, and arbonne before i ever waste time with that junk!

  86. Margie Cortez says:

    I always felt MLM’s were cults, rip offs, for people who are easily led etc etc…..I am a bit of a research freak, and came accross some info I found interesting. Warren Buffet owns 6 or 7 of these companies, including one called Pampered Chef. Now I am not a distributor or have ever gone to one of those parties, but I know people who love their products. I have bought some products at expo’s that are marketing through direct sales that I really enjoy, like Scentsy candles, they are nice for the home and I havent seen any I like as much on the internet or in stores, but Im not interested in starting a business selling them and no one has tried to bully me into that one either. My point here is that while Nirium, in my opinion, is an absolute scam, some companies that choose this method of distribution have not only been successful, they have great products. Why should everyone use a “middle man” like Target, CVS, Wal Mart etc…to market their products? And, quite frankly, I would like to support the “little guy” working hard to make a living, more than a company who pays their CEO millions and their workers $10 an hour. You just have to do your homework as an educated consumer, and make an educated decision of wheter to buy or buy into. Bottom line, if you find a product you like, are not “required” to reorder, stock, or push onto others, why criticize this method so harshly? There are bad apples everywhere in every walk of life, no one can “make” anyone invest in something if they dont want to. Again, I have looked at that Nirium product and its founder, and have concluded for myself that it is a bunch of crap and hype. Where’s the skincare ingredients that are known to be effective in this stuff, like Vitamin C, Rentinol, etc etc..??? Where is the founders experience in skincare? No way will I try that product, not enough information to make me feel comfortable putting it on my skin.

    • Drgeorge says:

      Thanks, Margie. I agree, direct selling is a fine way to distribute product and supply desired goods. My wife has been buying CABI clothiing from a close friend for years. A major difference is no one is pestering her to become another seller herself with promises of riches if she in turn can get others to do the same ad infinitum. Some MLMs survive for decades such as AMWAY which has several million “distributors” around the world. Just by introducing products into their own pipeline for personal use by distributors, they can justify product development and production costs. Nonetheless, history teaches us that nearly all MLMs restult in net losses for all but a few percent of the people involved. If you’re early to the party, you win, if not early enough, you lose. This is an entirely different issue than the questions about mechanism of action BFT raises about the science behind the Nerium AD product. That is our focus. We concur in your questions about actives known to be beneficial – where are they?

  87. Michelle says:

    Here is the link to the actual MD Anderson Blog post. They are not denying any of the claims Nerium has made regarding Dr.Newman, or his oleander research there. All they are saying is that they don’t make Nerium, are not making money from Nerium. Nothing derogatory here, just plain and simple we didn’t invent it here and we don’t make or sell it. Plain and simple.

    The shell game going on here here has to do with the bragging by Nerium about the connection to MD Anderson. Problem is the only work with oleandrin done there (by Dr Newman and many others) was about anti-cancer effects, showing how it elevates free radicals and destroys cells. So, if it wasn’t invented there, and the research there has nothing to do with anti-aging skin effects, in fact just the opposite, then why all the initial Nerium publicity pointing there? Deceptive marketing? You decide.

  88. akljfdkl adjslfkjasdkl says:

    if you’re exposing scams then why don’t you include amway; one of the largest historical scams in mlm out there to date?? you can bet EDITED got plenty of ideas from amway.

  89. tan says:

    Why of all the thousands and thousands of post, blogs, and articles I have found on the internet in regards to Nerium, this the only one I find that is negative. What is your agenda? What is it that you are trying to sell? Maybe you should promote your product and why you like it and not bash others who have been successful.

    • Drgeorge says:

      BFT suggests you take the time to revisit these posts, blogs,and articles you reference and click on whatever links or contact information they contain. You will find you are taken to a brand partner’s portal to learn more, buy product, and hopefully become another link in the chain, albeit one level lower in the 10 level commission structure. The viral nature of the financial structure of Nerium was created to produce precisely this effect. Also, go back and find out why we ever began to look into this company. None of the people selling it could explain the science. We are science guys, these people are clearly not and it was apparent from the start. We are still hoping to learn the mechanism of the “accidentaly” discovery…there has to be one if what Nerium claims is true. So far, all efforts have resulted in the same old information about systemic safety and lack of toxicity. That concern was put to rest long ago.

      • Jameel D says:

        I have to agree with Tan. You seem to have such a grudge against them and the MLM business model. EVERY PRODUCT STARTS SOMEWHERE. Who really knows how valid the claims are? It may work for someone, or it may not.

        It’s not a grudge, it’s a bias. We are bio-scientists. We are biased in favor of products that have a rational, scientific mode of action at the level of dermal cell biology. We are biased against products that won’t even tell you the mode of action (because, based on the known actives, smoldering skin damage is more likely than benefit). You, on the other hand, seem biased against science. Let everyone judge for themselves? Apply that to products with a potential to harm, you would get a lot of bad things happening. We don’t want to see that. We care, and we wonder why you don’t. You are right that EVERY PRODUCT STARTS SOMEWHERE. Every product claiming to be anti-aging for skin should start with a rational explanation of how that would happen based on the science of the ingredients. When you active ingredient is a well known cytotoxin that shuts down protein synthesis and inhibits growth, you have even more splainin’ to do.

        Someone told me to rub alo vera on my cuts and burn instead of polysporin. I did, and it worked for me.

        Some have suggested that the active ingredient in Nerium AD is actually aloe. This begins to make sense when you read the toxicology reports that say a child would have to drink 200 bottles of it to be harmed. If you back calculate from known toxic doses, you can determine that there is a really is a miniscule amount oleandrin in the product. In other words, it looks like they put it in there for marketing purposes only. Try to build on the MD Anderson rep[utation (that backfired) and the work of Dr Newman on the role of oleandrin as a cancer drug (excellent work – but again it backfires for the MLM because the goal in cancer treatment is to kill cells or stop them from growing, which oleandrin does nicely, both in cancer cells and normal cells). But I guess we should get some reassurance from that. maybe there is so little that it does not harm (but of course no good either). Unless of course you believe in the widely discredited theory of homeopathy.

        But that same treatment may not work for someone else. Everyone’s composition is different. That applies to every product or substance out there.

        Then there is no reason to ever do any product science because the world is totally random and unpredictable and cause and effect are mere illusions. Good luck trying to sell that idea. Oh, wait, maybe you could create a pyramid scheme and recruit people to make this argument for the promises of riches. That might work!

        Let the people try the product, and be the judge for THEMSELVES. If they don’t like it, no one is holding a gun to their head to keep buying it.

        By the time they have tried for themselves, you already have their money. They don’t reorder – they get it anyway(why is autoship necessary – are they just forgetting how good this is?). They try to cancel that (takes hours on the phone, we are told). An MLM accepts a high churn rate – there are always new suckers (one born every minute according to some hucksters).

        I’m sure you had to come to a decisions by yourself at some point in your life on something you wanted to purchase, let others do the same. It’s their life to lead.

        It’s their life to lead, and their skin to hyperage unnecessarily while paying for the privilege. Thank you P.T. Barnum

  90. Jameel D says:

    It would have been nice to have my whole message displayed, but instead, you will manipulate ones thoughts to try and prove your message. I don’t expect this to even make it on your board since you govern free speech. Your words can’t be trusted. Can’t believe you called me P.T. Barnum, look in the mirror….the key thing between the 2 of you is MANIPULATION.

    You get all in a lather, but there is a rather more pedestrian explanation. Your earlier comment was miles long, and much of it was repetitious. What we do is answer those in chunks, not all at once. Further, you perpetually persist in being tricksy by putting your Nerium BP URL in, like we are so gullible and are going to become a billboard for your pyramid-building attempts. But, alas, we know how WordPress works. And for a guy who works for the captain of the pants-on-fire brigade to call us untrustworthy and manipulative can be seen as a compliment of sorts. Thank you.

    • Jameel D says:

      If that was the case about my message, then instead of taking the parts that you wanted to get across and responding to them, why not say as the moderator. “Your message is to long, please shorten for the purposes of our readers”, then give me the opportunity to say what I want to say, you DO have my email address. AND FYI, if you do your research, I live in CANADA. Nerium does not exist here, so kinda hard to build a business I can’t own… This website has definitley become a joke. I have my own business where I help local businesses in my community using internet marketing.

      Anyways, at first I thought this website was going to be a fountain of good information, but in the days of the internet, you could just be someone in a basement with nothing better to do than bring people down. Blogs aren’t hard to make and get 30000 people to visit…anyone can be a star. It’s the rise of the micro celebrity.

      • drjohn says:

        As we said, we were going to do the whole thing with minor edits, but in chunks. What’s wrong with that? So, why are we a joke? Out of curiosity (mine and other readers) what is your connection to Nerium? Why do you care? And where did you come to your philosophy which seems to say that every product (good-bad-evil) should be left alone to sink or swim based on (not science, so … what … marketing??).

  91. Peggy says:

    I became interested in Nerium when my girlfriend’s face transformed. I thought it’d be worth putting out the money if I could get those kinds of results. Especially since they have a no questions asked, 30 day money back guarentee. I figured if worse came to worse I would return the bottle.
    Well, 4 months later I am looking around 12 years younger (I’m 57). I had been thinking of eyelid surgery, no need anymore. My jawline has firmed up, jowls are gone, and lots of funny little ‘skin things’ seem to have vanished. Wrinkles have slowly but surely erased themselves.
    I have problems with skin drying and splitting on my fingers as I am an artist and sometimes chalk or paint mess I my skin. Usually when my skin splits it takes months of keeping it covered to heal it. I had a split on my thumb recently and put nerium on it at night. Much better the next day, and within 3 days it was gone.

    Say what you like, this stuff HEALS skin. I am extremely happy with it. The ingredients are all natural and not harmful. So I wonder why you have such an agenda to diss this product?
    The price? I referred 3 girlfriends and now get my monthly bottle for free.

    What is wrong with that?

  92. Jameel D says:

    Part of me kind of thinks that if you are ahead of the curve and get certain keywords ranked for products that are on the rise, this will generate more organic traffic to you. Hmmm, funny, I googled Nerium Scam and look who pops up first. More traffic to your blog…I must say, excellent work you guys do when it comes to Organic SEO.

    • drjohn says:

      Well thanks, but we cannot take credit as we don’t use tags even, let alone sophisticated SEO strategies. We don’t seem to need to. We are told that the search engine algorithms of Google favor certain things like an honest debate and an academic approach. We get linked to by a lot of academic sites. We allow multiple viewpoints, while no such thing happens on the nerium sites where all dissenting opinion is expunged. Really – go look at them all. Especially the ones that start with something like “Nerium Scam”?” and turn up on a page of search results using those words. They quickly conclude no such thing, then pitch you to get under them on the Neriumid (neologism for Nerium pyramid). Their use of “scam” is clearly a manipulation of the search engines, wouldn’t you say? Ours may be the only honest one you will find on the first 20 pages of search results. Other than amazon, which does allow reviews good and bad. We are ambivalent about traffic to BFT because we like to answer questions, but they are a bit of a distraction when they won’t fit into the 30 minutes a day allocated to pro bono volunteer crusaderism. Which reminds me — we need some more volunteers. .Public service minded folks from all walks of life. Apply to to Thanks.

  93. Jameel D says:

    Thanks for replying with such respect DrJohn, I like that. I’m not sure if you were moderating before. That’s ok, you don’t have to follow up with my main response, moment has passed.

    I have no ties to Nerium. I heard about it and started doing research as I like to learn what things are trending….

    It was a joke based on the fact that the site butchered my comments and focused on the points that you wanted to get across that is so bad…and on top of it said “Thank you P.T. Barnum”. It also claimed that I’m a rep as well by saying some wordpress mumbo jumbo. Not cool.

    My philosophy on every product should be left alone to sink or swim. Things that work will succeed, things that don’t will ultimately fail…its just how it is. Having a website that is so strong in its belief that this is such a bad product makes me think that there is something behind this. Why push so much for something to fail? Why not start a war on any product that doesn’t do what it says it will do? I’m sure there are millions out there. People do like to hear the truth, and based on your website, you tell it, but there is so much more to talk about in this world than Nerium. Why not focus more of your attention on letting people know WHAT WORKS as opposed to what doesn’t. You guys seem to be on a mission to bury them.

    Common docs, doctors are supposed to help people. Help us by finding something you truely believe in and educate us, not bring down the competition to do so. People have a mind of their own. We all make mistakes, heck, I bought a $2000 ad space yeilding 3 leads. We all learn from these mistakes.

    For the marketing side. People get scammed because they get thown into a world they don’t understand. The typical people who join these businesses have no clue about entrepreneurship and sales etiquittes which leads them to failure, which makes statistics horrible in MLM retention. People spend $500 and don’t focus on the business and then blame the company. I’m sure someone who spends 300k on a franchise will try a little harder at making the business succeed.

    Tha’s just my two scents. I appretiate your reply.

  94. drjohn says:

    Jameel. Thank you for your frank answers. Let me reply to your questions. First, why do we think it is important to point out products’ faults instead of letting them just die on the vine? In the realm of things medical, harm can be done. In this arena especially, the regulatory bodies are pretty much hamstrung on looking at long range safety. We as physicians cannot be silent when we find products that have major flaws that could be harming people. We are duty bound to speak out. To do otherwise would be a dereliction of our duty to protect health. You may say it’s only skin, and the worse thing that can happen is that people will look older instead of younger (inflammaging). But that is the realm we understand scientifically, so it is the realm we are in charge of guarding. Others are in charge of hearts and things like that. Our turf is the biggest organ in the body, but the one that very few people will die of if it gets harmed by smoldering inflammation. We humbly accept our place in the world of medicine.

    Now, a second reason we do this is because we abhor certain business practices (MLM’s in particular) because they seem predatory and “tricksy”. We value truth, and think that letting companies get away with deception as a good marketing tool in not something that makes for a good social fabric. if you cannot trust in the marketplace, you get chaos in the marketplace. A license to prevaricate is a license to dip into your wallet. A license to fudge the truth about some things (e.g. side effect of a drug that may cause clots and lead to strokes) might also be thought of as a a license to kill (hyperbolically speaking). There is tons of data out there about the evils of MLM’s – we didn’t invent that. But we listen to the stories of people being hurt, and we hurt for them.

    A third reason we persist on this story, is that we have been made personal targets, with prevarications and ad hominems, and all manner of misdeeds. It’s a blatant attempt to silence critics through intimidation. Here in the USA, we strongly defend free speech as our right under the first amendment to the US Constitution (there is no such freedom in Canada, I recall). . We hate it when others try to suppress free speech. We love a good whistle blower uncovering evil corporate misdeeds. And we despise those who lie and cheat their way into power especially. We like the little guy to win. There are lots of little guys getting hurt in pyramids. Yes, they don’t know how to be selling machine entrepreneurs, and don’t belong there in the first place. But they are enticed (we will show you how to do it), and the enticements are laced with all manner of Machiavelist notions.

    And we do talk here about things that work, and exciting news. That is part of our mission, But lately, the world has become a dark place. The evil empires are on the march. We would love to be spending more time on what works, real science. We can only hope the wave subsides, and the pyramids collapse, and truth rises from the ashes to be revered during a period of hard earned peace and harmony. Meanwhile .. we hear heavy breathing.

  95. O-nonymous says:

    FYI. My husband found out that when you try to research nerium all the web sites were re routed to another site that spoke well about the product. My sister and brother-in-law are sucked into this cult of bs. It put a strain on the family. I noticed at their meetings that the local people running this were our local scammers during the housing market. Thank you for posting what We suspected all along.

  96. Julia says:

    Isn’t this classic behavior, Nerium is a fraud. Those are words out of people’s mouth’s that do not understand what MLM means and how it can benefit their lives..[edited]. Now, for the product not working, there are plenty of people out there, all over the internet that are claiming there are crazy *&^% bloggers trying to ruin business for them, for Nerium and are giving people who sell Nerium a bad name. So, there’s the flipside of the coin.

  97. Confused Brand Partner says:

    Wow – I am more confused than ever about the real facts and science behind Nerium. I have read through most of the comments concerning this product. I am left with the question you continue to pose…what are the longterm effects of this product on the skin? I would like to know the answer to this before I pursue this any further. I can’t, in good conscience, ask any other friends or family to try this product until I get the answer. Thank you for your legitimate concerns over the missing explanations and science. I wish I would’ve found this sooner, but better now than later. I have never ever done an MLM. Regretting it at this point, but hopefully some positive data will surface. Now I am on a quest for answers. Until then, I will definitely refrain from selling this product.

  98. Adam says:

    Thank You for posting what I have been trying to relate to people for years. The MLM model is flawed and doesn’t work. That’s why you see a bunch of hype about a company and all it’s distributors only to see a year or 2 later all those same distributors hyping up a new company., Why? because the hype is gone from the previous opportunity and they had to leach on to the next best thing to keep rolling forward.

    Let’s put it this why, once you see all the hype online from a bunch of reviews to social media from distributors like the 90 day challenge crap going on right now, it’s to late to join!

    The only way to make money in MLM is to be in before the wave of hype so you can ride the wave of hype all the way to the bank. However, how can one feel good doing it when you know there is a ton of people about to lose money off your wave of hype?

  99. pidley says:

    Based on a close friendship, we bought a bottle of Nerium with the idea that my wife would use it. If it made a difference, we considered using her face as a billboard and become a brand partner. We’re told that Nerium was developed at MD Anderson, one of the premier cancer hospitals in the US if not the world. What a hook? Now, we’ve discovered that the connection to Anderson was a deception, at a minimum. In addition, we’ve also learned that there aren’t any long-term studies as the effects of using Nerium which is scary. Thus, she’s stopped using Nerium and we have decided to avoid the brand partnership. It’s clear that the “bonuses”, ie a Lexus, create an atmosphere of greed. (It’s interesting that our friend claims that Nerium pays $500 towards his Lexus lease, although the reality is that this money is coming from his revenues.)

  100. pidley says:

    Simple math:
    MLMs work by geometric expansion, where you get ten to sponsor ten to sponsor ten, and so on. This is usually shown as an expanding matrix (just don’t say “pyramid”!) with corresponding kick-backs at various levels.

    The problem here is one of common sense. At a mere three levels deep this would be 1,000 people. There goes the neighborhood! At six levels deep, that would be 1,000,000 people believing they can make money selling. But to whom?
    At $500 to $1000 for a starter kit, $500 mil is paid to Nerium at $500 per kit.

  101. Anon says:

    Nerium is now heavily promoting the fact that NeriumAD is being featured in “Beautiful You” magazine. Is this magazine a well-respected publication in the beauty/cosmetic industry? I’ve never heard of this mag before.

    If NeriumAD is so “great,” why isn’t in magazines like “Allure”?

    • Drgeorge says:

      Check out the following link:

      The commentator states in this Youtube video that the magazine is being published by the company and will soon be available in bookstores…apparently part of the ongoing marketing to let the world know about this product. 100 million dollars in sales its first year (according to the person who made the video) means there’s a lot of money with which to create this magazine and any number of other marketing vehicles. Could a movie or television series be next?

      BFT’s opinion: We don’t recommend holding your breath waiting for a mainstream beauty magazine to cover or promote it… although money does talk, sometimes even to editors.

      • Anon says:

        I find it very curious as to why a New Zealand magazine would be the chosen vehicle to “spread the word” about NeriumAD in the USA. Seems kind of obscure. Must be more to this story….

      • Angela says:

        Beautiful You Magazine is already SOLD OUT at several Barnes & Noble stores…

        • drjohn says:

          Perhaps because it is so chock full of unbiased essential information about a product everyone so much wants to read about. Or, maybe because B&N only ordered two copies and brand partners bought them both.

  102. NNB says:

    From Nerium Biotech’s published 10Q

    Lack of Approval in Major North American Markets
    Use of Cardiac Glycosides May Cause Unwanted Side Effects
    Combining Therapeutic Dosages of Different Cardiac Glycoside Could Be Dangerous
    Positive Immune Response Not Independently Proven
    Lack of Physician Acceptance
    The Company’s Products, including Anvirzel™, May Become Obsolete
    Necessity for Additional Capital
    Speculative Nature of Securities
    Currency Risk
    Reliance on Key Personnel
    Limited Experience of Management
    Dependence on Ability to Obtain Technical and Administrative Staff
    The Company Operates in a Competitive Market Sector
    Intellectual Property Protection may be Uncertain
    High Start-up and Operating Risks During Initial Operations
    The Company May Not Be Able to Successfully Develop its Current Product Line
    Failure of Promotional Activities
    The Company May Be Unable to Manage Rapid Growth
    The Company Does Not Carry Product Liability Insurance

    Read more:

  103. Karen [SNIP] says:

    I’m 57. First week noticeable reduction in pore size. Second week noticeable reduction in wrinkles between my eyes and forehead. week 3 my ruddy wrinkled sun damaged chest RUDDYness gone & noticeable reduction in wrinkles guessing 50%. Week 4 Jowl & neck reduction,guessing 20% & under eye bag reduction, guessing 15%. Taking pictures to document that I am not crazy and my friends are having similar results.LOVE NERIUM

    • drjohn says:

      For those of you who might want to approach these laudatory statements with the skepticism of a scientist – look at the purported time frames. Wrinkles 50% erased in 2-3 weeks. If you read any of our posts that deal with wrinkles (e.g. Enter the Matrix) you can learn all about how wrinkles are formed, and how they can be undone via dermal regeneration. It takes months, not weeks. The only changes a topical cream can produce in weeks are hydrational (puff up previously dry skin) which merely mask wrinkles and does not affect the underlying architecture of the skin. A temporary landfill, so to speak.

      I should point out to Karen that in my opinion, and with all due respect, it probably doesn’t help you to sell a product using miracle claims, because many potential customers (I venture to say nearly all those who read BFT) will conclude you are hyping your product, and mistrust anything you say. It is sort of like the tabloids in the supermarket checkout line. If you keep publishing headlines about alien encounters leading to celebrity pregnancies, you tend to lose credibility. Its entertaining, but then nobody I know expects them to tell the truth. Same with overselling wrinkle cures. You end up painting yourself as the National Enquirer of skin care because you spread tall tales. But we continue to hope the best for all those who LOVE their miracle product, for whatever reason. Elvis lives!

    • Drgeorge says:

      Karen, are you the same Karen XXXX listed on Linkedin?

      Karen XXXX – Brand Partner at Nerium International, Social Media Expert at Nerium International.

      Seems those facts might be appropriate to disclose so unwary readers don’t mistakenly think your post is from an unbiased contributor. Part of the issue, as Drjohn points out in his response, is that miraculous changes such as you describe don’t exist in a scientific world except in the chairs of Hollywood movie makeup artists.

      I expect posts to soon claim this product can change water into wine and cure the lame.

  104. pidley says:

    May not be the same person,but there is a Karen [SNIP] whom is a brand partner for Nerium

    • drjohn says:

      I guessed that might be the case, but that is fine with us – we get lots of comments from Nerium folks, all the way up the chain of command. We respect their privacy, so we try to avoid last names. Even though Karen gave her full name, we went back and edited it to XXXX. We don’t want anyone to feel personally embarrassed by our critical comments, if any. Consider them as illustrations of points, not attacks on individuals. Also, we don’t allow advertising on BFT, and many Nerium BP’s have tried to leave comments here to draw attention to themselves as part of a recruiting effort to gain people under them on the pyramid.

  105. Adriana XXXX says:

    Yes, it smells different because IT WORKS! Check this out to learn the truth about Nerium. What product do you push?

    • drjohn says:

      We removed Adrianna’s last name and her link to her Nerium brand partner web site.

      To Adrianna – if you have to ask what product we push, then obviously you have looked around and can’t find one. Could it be because we are not pushing one? We recommend things we like from time to time, since we do review cosmetic science (our stated mission here). Pick one.

      To Nerium BP’s- we have been inundated lately with many attempts to use our site to drive traffic to your Nerium BP businesses by attempting to place thinly disguised ads, links and other such things in comments. Some of you even use tricksy tools to try to fool us (we noticed your disguised link, Adrianna). We keep telling you this a non-commercial site, and we don’t allow adverts, but you keep ignoring us. Go back and read the truth pair-o-docs page to see all our policies in one place. We try to be fair and balanced, and publish your comments when they contain relevant ideas or even just your take on things. But we are feeling spammed by you all at the moment. We ask you to apply self restraint. We want to hear your opinion, but not your commercial blather. And the sneaky things some of you keep trying does not endear us to your cause. Makes you seem ethically challenged. Not all of you – there are a few of you who have been straightforward and we appreciate that.

      To everyone- we apologize for not keeping up with our planned content schedule. We have just been so busy with various matters that we have not had time to volunteer here. We are frankly a bit fatigued with the Nerium thing (moratorium?), so we want to get some fresh new stuff up for you to ponder. We were thinking of skin whiteners (big sellers in much of the world and there is a lot of interesting science there to delve into). Anybody have requests?

  106. Bobalina says:

    I’d like to start by saying that I am not a representative for this company, I am a licensed esthetician. Someone recently have me a bottle of this product to try, and while I do not have wrinkles (yet) I do have significant scaring on my cheeks due to a severe case of acne in my twenties (or I should say I did). I have been using the product for about two weeks and have seen a significant reduction in scarring! I don’t know if they’ve changed their formula, but I’ve seen a lot of comments regarding the scent of the product. The product I have does not have a strong scent at all, certainly nothing anyone else would notice while it’s on my face. If I had to describe the scent it does have, I would say it smells very faintly of sunscreen or similar. The comments speculating that a reduction in wrinkles is due to swelling, seems ridiculous, as I said I am seeing a change in the texture of my skin. No swelling here. I am very happy with the results, andlike I said, I am not a representative, though I am certainly a lifelong customer now!

    • drjohn says:

      While Bobalina writes a nice sincere sounding note, we frankly publish in order to correct a serious conceptual error. Scarring of any sort, including true acne scarring, will NOT change in a matter of a few weeks. It requires the dissolving of bad collagen/elastin fibers and replacement with new, fresh good collagen/elastin fibers. The regenerative process takes months. Faster than that is a physiologic impossibility, unless mere disguising takes place. There is always a long range risk of moving a stable, healed scar back to the inflammatory phase of wound healing in order to stimulate regeneration, in that the scar when it does reform it could become worse, not better. Scaring is an inflammatory process. Anti-scarring therefore needs to be an anti-inflammatory process, at least in the regenerative phase. Make sure any product you use has those characteristics. We are glad you are happy with the product you did use, but disappointed that an esthetician would convey this sort of misinformation about scar reduction dyanmics. We would suggest you consult one of the better skin physiology textbooks written for estheticians, e.g. Dr. Pugliese’s Physiology of the Skin.

  107. Angela says:

    I have been using the product for over a month and am seeing WONDERFUL results! And the customer support center and all their help is AMAZING! And I don’t sell the product either! I am just One Happy Customer! Let’s just face it, the other cosmetic companies that have been around FOREVER with obviously CLEAR results… LOL, (since they are all still improving on their products), are just P.O.ed at how great Nerium AD is and how awesome the entire company has done in just 14 short months! Haters! They are just pissed that THEY didn’t/couldn’t do it!

    • drjohn says:

      I am disturbed by this trend of calling anyone who disagrees with you a “hater”? Excuse me, but it is just another form of blanket ad hominem. It degrades the debate, and casts a shadow not on “everyone” but the debater him/herself. The constant barrage of such name calling just makes that whole side of the debate look pitifully weak in terms of logic or evidence, forcing them to resort to base tactics. I think you hurt the product you want to advocate by doing this. The image that comes to mind is lemmings rushing in a herd to the cliff edge. “Don’t think, just jump off”. Anyone else agree?

      • Neil says:

        I don’t know what the person making the comment above DrJohn is talking about. I have had nothing but challenges with their customer service ( nerium customer service is an oxymoron ). I’ve asked SIMPLE questions with responses taking over 48 hours.

        I have not received the support they supposedly offer. They don’t FIX anything that is “glitchy” yet keep moving forward. This is nothing but a sure-fire recipe for DISASTER for everyone except the “inner circle” who are making money hand over fist on others’ hard work and sweat. SHAME ON YOU NERIUM!!!

  108. Gloria Gonzalez says:


    I’ve experienced a similiar situation as Dan Stern. I purchased the Success Pack for $499 and tried to sell to family and friends but they thought it was too expensive for an anti-aging product. Needless to say I didn’t think that I would do well selling this product so I returned the entire Success pack as it was delivered to me including 5 full bottles. I’ve been trying for 30 days to get my refund and was told by customer service that the returns dept received my box with 5 empty bottles therefore I get no refund. They have opened 3 investigations and with the same conclusion – 5 empty bottles…no refund. I am very disappointed that this company is not focused on keeping customers satifised but on keeping your money. I will continue to fight for what is right until I get my refund. I would like to thank Dan Stern for speaking with me and reassuring me that I am not alone in this fight and evil will not prevail.

    • drjohn says:

      Could it be they sent you 5 empty bottles to start with? That, of course, would be the presumption of any fair customer service department, if in fact they were empty, because manufacturing errors occur all the time. Occurs at the end of an automated filling run. Somebody forgets to turn off the conveyor in time. The end of the line picks them up and puts them in boxes.

      I would like to see the training materials these people use. Anybody want to smuggle some out? Whistleblowers?

  109. brand partner says:

    how do you respond to the folloeing posted by XXXX [SNIP] Nerium’s executive:

    about an hour ago
    Consider the Source and Motives!

    [SNIP] [SNIP] [SNIP] [SNIP] [SNIP] … Stay tuned as we reveal the “REAL” truth behind this “Blogging Scorpion”.

  110. Polly says:

    This post seems to be less about nerium , more about bashing MLm marketing. Your depiction of strong well managed MLm companies could not be more untrue. Here’s a fact: I’ve been very successful in MLm, but I worked my backside off to get there. If a company promises “get rich quick’ it’s simply not legit. I don’t have any requirement to purchase or stock large volume, my directive is sales to legit consumers. I have no requirement to jump on a recruiting bandwagon, but the option and opportunity are there. I market a product that most people think is of use to them, and they keep coming back. If someone promises you rapid growth and advancement and a buttload of money for doing little or nothing, they are scamming you, plain and simple. A legit MLm is just as hard work as a job, but your boss doesn’t get to make the rules

    • drjohn says:

      You call it bashing, but you could just call it our opinion of MLM. We are less than dogmatic about it, just point to all the potential pitfalls, and then link to far more learned folk than we on the topic. I get it about working hard. But in my working hard if I must recruit downline people who are not as motivated or disciplined, and many end up losing money (as the stats say 96% do) then what have I done to improve the lot of my fellow man? On the other hand if I am scrupulous about making sure that only people who are as motivated and disciplined as I am are recruited, then I have to eliminate 96% of prospects. Now you could argue it’s up to them, let them sink or swim on their own merit. But again, what I have I done for/to my neighbors, my culture, my fellow man? How have I contributed?

  111. Polly says:

    Common sense would cover most aspects of your argument . Train those that only have a genuine interest properly, interview them properly , and you’ll do them justice. We all have those that sit back expecting success to fall into their lap…I make sure they know it won’t happen with my company

    • drjohn says:

      If you are correct (I will assume you are for the moment, your arguments are logical and clear, which helps), how would you explain the volume of people we hear from who have found themselves worse off after experiencing nerium? Are there companies (other than yours) who do not follow the (ethical, common sense) rules you outline? What should we make of them? Should it not fall on the industry to “self-police”- it might help if someone set some standards…it might elevate the reputation of MLM above where it currently is in the minds of the public. I =cannot tell you how many comments we get that simply say “I would never get involved with an MLM”.

  112. Polly says:

    I’m not in support of nerium, nor can I condone their business approach, along with many others . But not all MLm are scams, and not all scams are MLm .

  113. Scammed by Nerium (almost) says:

    I went to a “wine and wrinkles” party over the weekend because my friend asked me to. I am only 25 so the wrinkles part of it didn’t really fascinate me… good thing they added “wine”. I was never told anything about this party other than the title. I though “oh, just a bunch of women sitting around, drinking wine while rubbing creams on our hands”. OH BOY WAS I WRONG! Since I went with my friend who was apparently selling, I had to help set up the appetizers and wine. Soon others showed up and I became worried since it was apparent that everyone was selling something called “Nerium AD” except for me and one other lady (whom they ultimately forced to sign up as well). Long story not as long, I was basically forced into signing up even though I kept saying “no”. I didn’t have my car so I couldn’t just leave, it was in the middle of nowhere (miles from even another house), and cell service was shotty t best) so they basically “made” me sign up. All weekend I had anxiety over this “how can I justify $550 (it was only supposed to be $500 and I’m not sure where the extra $50 came from) with Christmas coming soon, new tires to buy, and no one really to speak of to sell to”. Well Monday as soon as they opened I called and cancelled everything the order, the fact I was a “seller”, “my website”, etc. I told my friend sorry that it wasn’t good for my family at this time. The lady that signed her up was mad, but oh well. I can’t even believe this happened to me and feel like I can never go to another “party” like that ever again for fear of what may happen. The whole time they were making me sign up I kept asking questions they weren’t able to answer to my satisfaction: 1.) If 5 bottles costs $400, then why am I being charged $500 for the same 5 bottles? A.) Its basically so you sign up for the $1000 (12 bottles) kit as it’s a better deal. 2.) Why can’t I just try it first before I sign up to sell… I want to know how good the product is I’m selling. A.) Here are pictures, trust me its great! 3.) Why do they need my ss# to sign up? No one should need that! A.) … 4.) After you get 3 people to sign up, and they get 3 people to sign up, how much monthly volume do you need to get the leased Lexus? A.) By that time, you will have enough. 5.) Do you have to maintain a monthly selling volume to keep the Lexus? A.) Yes, but by that time you will be making enough (sounds familiar huh?)

    There were others, but those were the biggest ones. Sorry for such a long post!

  114. Nerium Brand Partner (SNIP) says:

    Hello doc, I am a brand partner with Nerium Int. I am 46 yrs. old and have had tremendous results using Nerium AD – I look around 5 years younger and receive compliments often at how great my skin looks. I would like to share the following with you and to protect her identity (the woman whom who wrote this) since I did not ask her permission to post this on your website ~ Miss Smith has been a medical aesthetician for over 20 years and she is just one of many in her field that recommend this product to all her clients.

    Medical Aesthetician, Miss Smith shares how the magical night cream Nerium AD actually works:

    “I feel thats it’s time to explain how this magical night cream we call Nerium AD actually works: The Molecular structure of the extract combined with the Aloe Vera molecule are so minute, tiny, the night cream is able to penetrate deep in the dermis whereby cell turn over takes place. Anything next to this molecule has its strength boosted. People must be very careful what they use when using Nerium……(sometimes the wrong things are used, like retinols which are toxic anyway or pure essential oils). Another ingredient is steric acid, in the alphahydroxy family, which builds up the skins hyaluronic acid, a natural substance in our skin that plumps it back up and thickens it. Alphas like glycolic, lactic, etc. all have small molecular structures and penetrate the dermis.

    Remember the history of this night was developed by famous cancer docs at MD Anderson, Duke, Johns Hopkins to name a few and tested non toxic since 1998 to remove cancers and passed all FDA Trials, therefore it will go after any irregular cell it finds deep in the dermis. It was originally an auto immune cream.
    It naturally wants to go after any irregular cells. The side benefit is AD age defying.
    It is very common for people to go through stages when starting Nerium as it will bring up any deep brown and erase it, reddness and erase it, and acne and erase it and scars will recover including pitted acne scars and smooth them. The face looks lighter and brighter! Necks lift! Eye lids lift! Smooths your skin!

    I can’t make any official medical claims or it would be a rather expensive prescription in the hands of the pharmaceutical companies hands rather than in our hands as a cosmoceutical. This is how we market….but we can picture any thing.
    We have seen it work on rosacea, excema, and actinic keratosis….future potential iregular cells and the repigmenting of scarred skin. We still are discovering new miracles every day. Remember, the side effect to this night cream is a face-lift in a bottle! Age defying NeriumAD.”

    Sincerely, Miss Smith

    • Drgeorge says:

      The following excerpts warrant comment by BFT (in CAPS below):

      “I feel that it’s time to explain how this magical night cream we call Nerium AD actually works: The Molecular structure of the extract combined with the Aloe Vera molecule are so minute, tiny, the night cream is able to penetrate deep in the dermis whereby cell turn over takes place. Anything next to this molecule has its strength boosted.”


      “Remember the history of this night was developed by famous cancer docs at MD Anderson, Duke, Johns Hopkins to name a few and tested non toxic since 1998 to remove cancers and passed all FDA Trials, therefore it will go after any irregular cell it finds deep in the dermis.”






  115. Lorie says:

    I have been thoroughly enjoying your input Docs. Here is one more tidbit on Nerium. A look at the Better Business Bureau (ratings) has Nerium rated [snip]. I doubt the kool-aid drinkers can deny that!!


  116. Lorie says:

    Feels like Elmer’s Glue and Preparation H. Tried it, no change.
    I’ve had many friends pulled into Nerium by the “targeted” efforts of their leaders former company. And I’m very concerned about what the long term effects may bring them :(

  117. Jimulacrum says:

    “Mr. Olson, I have but one question for you …. how can you sleep at night, knowing that you are adding so much misery to so many people’s lives?”

    On very expensive, very comfortable Egyptian cotton sheets, I’m sure. Some people just don’t have a conscience, or they’ve become very adept at finding ways to ignore or suppress it. Who knows? Maybe he’s even convinced himself that what he’s doing helps people, and that all those whining losers out there just didn’t try hard enough.

  118. teddy says:

    I am very impressed and grateful of your perseverance. I could never really pinpoint the exact reasons why i never felt comfortable when i get “invited” to these MLM opportunities UNTIL now. I wish to use this publication/article to guide other friends and families AWAY from the MLM “apple” so they won’t be clouded by misjudgment. Thank you for your research.


  119. Michelle says:

    I tried the product for almost a month and ended up in the emergency and on prednisone for a week with my face swollen itching and burning. I am wondering if anyone else has experienced this. I’m still waiting for my refund. They said it would take a few weeks??

  120. Jesse says:

    This article is not based off facts. Its based on completely biased opinions. My mom has been using Nerium AD for a little over a month now and she loves it. I didn’t really believe all the pictures I saw people posting about their results. Until I saw first hand what its doing to my moms face, I took a before pic and I have taken a few after pictures ever since. This product really works. I think someone just has beef against network marketing.

  121. sheila tate says:

    Hi, Thanks so much for your blog…Wow, wish I would have seen it a week ago….Im still shaking my head about this whole experience however a very good friend and doctor recommended it and gave me a bottle…Well it did Seem to improve my skin…On the eighth day I noticed as i was applying my makeup, that it wasnt seeping into my acne scars as it usually did….I was convinced it was closing them underneath the top layer somehow because they were still visible…but still happy/…Still it nagged me how this worked???Is it repair or a reaction…Well, one shiny slick presentation later, Im in….They make you believe its real science!! Research, MD Anderson, etc…Then my kit came and no definitive science…nothing telling me the mechanism of improvement…The comparison earlier to an anti seizure medication seems ludicrous as at that time brain research was minimal at best…But the mechanism of action on skin??? They are doing the Best Clinical Trial ever… seems like it would be fairly easy to determine if it was actual repair or if it was a reaction to an ingredient….Never Again….Truly!!! I wish no one bad…and Im certainly not saying nerium is bad…But, I dont understand why they demonize this blog….With all the Research, Science, Doctors and scientist they speak of why cant someone explain….What about long term effects….Why is oxidation good for the skin? After a full two days of searching for answers and trying to get an answer on their “customer service line….After only a brief 14 minute wait I got Issaac….I can send my success pack back but plan on taking it to the sheriffs dept first and documenting the entire contents and weight of each bottle…taking pictures and having witnesses notarize…and then do the same at the post office….Im thankful for the warning about claims of empty bottles returned….Also the company promises a 30 day money back guarantee…so theres NO RISK….If you dont like it simply return it…But as Isaac clearly informed me: No money will be refunded on “used” bottles of any sort….so guess if you intuitively realize you dont like the product somehow Before you open it and try, they will refund your money but for all of us that arent psychic…Well, were just out of luck….Too, Too many red flags…my computer was down during this time or I would have found your blog sooner… If anyone can think of additional measures I can take to insure that what I return is what they say they recieve please let me know….No longer a brand partner for Nerium….I appreciate what you do…..Sheila TAte

  122. Emanuel Zevallos says:

    Here is ST&T’s information

  123. Sarah anvari says:

    I tried nerium ad for about a week and even though I like the smell to be honest I saw no effects and even worse after a week I began to breakout. I have never had acne in my life nor have I ever had discolouration in my skin I began to get HUGE pimples that were puss filled and extremely painful. On my cheap and chin and forehead (all the areas I put it on) like an idiot I thought at the beginning of the breakout how unusual it was I’ve NEVER had acne or skin problems. I assumed it was a good opportunity to try the products n see how miraculous it actually was so I put it on the break out areas and found that the next morning they had grown in size and mass and had spread through out
    My face. I have pictures though to be honest they are taken when my skin started healing a little bit and don’t show how horribly damaged and painful it really was. Now my skin has permanent slats that I constantly have to put make up on top of to cover the discolouration which is horrible especially for someone who has never worn face make up before. My ski. Is completely destroyed from it and now I have permanent scars on my cheap and chin and clearly don’t feel as confident as I use to when I didn’t need to put on makeup. I use to be someone who was always complimented on my amazing skin. I USE to be.

  124. Todd says:

    I just saw this post about Dr Earl Mindell My questions is he a real partner or did he get paid to endorse the product given a position with the company and given a downline They never tell you the truth about these “deals”
    Big Time Business People are Partnering with Nerium International! We are so excited that Dr. Earl Mindell, worldwide best selling author of The Vitamin Bible and several other health and nutrition books has partnered with us at Nerium International!

  125. Cay says:

    The Nerium Oleander Plant History Uses and Benefits
    Scientific Classification
    Kingdom: Plantae
    Division: Magnoliophyta
    Class: Magnoliopsida
    Order: Gentianales
    Family: Apocynaceae
    Genus: Nerium
    Species: Nerium oleander

    Nerium oleander is a large fast growing evergreen shrub or small tree in the dogbane family Apocynaceae and is a known toxic plant that contains cardiac glycosides. It is the only species currently classified in the genus Nerium. The Nerium oleander plant is native to Asia and the Mediterranean region. This plant with glossy, 4 to 10 inch long narrow dark green leaves and funnel-shaped flower clusters, single or double can reach 3 to 20 feet tall. There are different varieties with varying heights and flowers in some varieties are delightfully fragrant. This flowering ornamental plant can be used as borders, hedges, backgrounds, or tall screens and is traditionally grown in yards and on roadways throughout the Southern and Southwestern United States.

    History of Cardiac Glycosides Use

    The use of plants such as Nerium oleander containing cardiac glycosides for medicinal purposes has been reported in ancient texts for more than 1500 years. Nerium oleander plant has been used traditionally as folk remedies for a wide variety of maladies and conditions, including dermatitis, eczema, psoriasis, herpes, sores, abscesses, warts, corns, skin cancer, ringworm, scabies, epilepsy, abortifacients, asthma, malaria dysmenorrheal, emetics, diuretics and heart tonics. Despite their potential to cause side effects, application of plants containing cardiac glycosides for treatment of malignant disease may extend back to Arab physicians in the 8th century. The potential use of cardenolide-like compounds for the treatment of cancer, initially investigated forty years ago, however, was abandoned because of the toxicity of these compounds.It was only recently, that Scandinavian oncologists such as J. Haux have suggested that the apoptosis (cell death) produced by cardiac glycosides such as digitalis in human tumor cells occurred at concentrations that could be without toxicity in humans and, therefore, this agent and plant extracts containing related cardiac glycosides (e.g. oleandrin from Nerium oleander) might be useful for treatment of cancer. Within the past ten years there has been a substantial increase in the number of studies reported in peer-reviewed science journals that deal with the effects of cardiac glycosides on the growth of human malignant tumor cells. Our understanding of the spectrum of the pharmacologic activities of cardiac glycosides has increased significantly since the discovery of their effectiveness for treatment of congestive heart failure. It is now recognized that certain cardiac glycosides are involved in complex cell signal transduction mechanisms that may have important consequences in their application to the prevention and/or treatment of malignant diseases. Thus, it is reasonable to bring this history of the use of plant extracts containing cardiac glycosides to the point of clinical tests in patients with cancer.

    Clinical Testing

    To date, however, there are only two Nerium oleander plant extracts containing cardiac glycosides (oleandrin) that have been developed for treatment of cancer and completed testing for safety in a Phase 1 clinical trial in the United States. These trials continue to provide data for determination of product safety levels.

  126. Tammy says:

    was introduced to nerium by extended family. I tried it with my husband for a week and then passed it on to my mom. My husband was convinced we were both allergic to product as we both had itchy watery eyes and were sneezing after waking up in morning. I also noticed when i put my moisturizer that I have used for years without problems was burning my upper lip. At first I thought that i was licking my lips in my sleep but realized that this is certainly from the nerium product. Its like a chemical burn on my upper lip. I then talked to my mom asking her how it was and she said her face felt like it was on fire this morning. She also experienced the itchy watery eyes. I did look on amazon at work and was reading some of the reviews and there was some postings about certain moisturizers can cause a reaction, people were also having itchy allergy type reactions. I tried this product but glad that I did not sign up. I am a bone marrow transplant nurse that delivers cytotoxic drugs to patients to kill off cancer. I have to gown with a special gown, glove with chemo approved gloves and wear a mask with an eyeshield all to protect my cells. I feel relieved after reading your posts and also a bit sad that I would subject my skin to something so unknown. I really appreciate this site after all of the nerium supporter sites that bombard the internet. Thank you and keep up the good work!

  127. Kazz says:

    A relative of mine introduced me to Nerium back in November of 2012. Wasn’t really interested but he was looking for people to build his MLM. Went to a few meetings and thought it could work for me. Signed up on December 22, 2012. They withdrew $532.85, since I was starting as a “brand partner”, on December 26, day after Christmas. On January 2, 2013, my relative, who has been with this company for about 3 months tells me he’s going to quit because his wife and next door neighbor got rash around their eyes and when he contacted Nerium, because the product was purchased over 30 days ago, there was going to be no refund and basically it’s the problem of the “consumer”. He wrote it up as a lesson learned but told me to get out of the business since the product is a gamble and either the purchaser will have a good experience or “rash”/allergic reactions to it. January 2, 2013, I send an email to Nerium support to cancel my shipment. Note: I still have not received my brand partner kit. I get an automated response which I am given a ticket number and someone will get back to me. January 10, still no reply so I call and speak to a CS rep. I tell the guy I want to cancel. He looks in the system and after a few questions, tells me my “full refund” will be credited back in 7-10 business days. On January 14, I get an email from Nerium saying my brand partner kit was shipped. They give me a tracking number and instructions on what to do when I receive it. Uh, what??? I key in the tracking number to see where the shipment is and the tracking number is invalid. And then my Nerium nightmare and the poorest customer service comes out in full force. It’s almost March and still no refund. I have documented everything since the beginning of January. So Nerium won’t give me my money because I have to “return the shipment” that was sent to me. Have told numerous reps I can’t return something I don’t have and I gave them the tracking number and they can’t find it either BUT….they’ve passed my information to a manager and someone will look into it and call me back. What’s the punchline? YOU WILL NOT GET YOUR REFUND UNTIL YOU RETURN OR REFUSE THE SHIPMENT (the shipment I’ve never received of course). I’ve had customer service reps tell me that in their “notes” under my account I’ve spoken to 2 managers and the issue is being resolved. NEVER has any person who I spoke with on the phone addressed themselves as a MANAGER. I’ve also asked to speak to a manager or someone that can help me and the rep will put me on hold, come back on the line a few minutes later and tell me there is no one available to take my call because (this is the kicker) they have the big Nerium spring event coming up and they’re busy. I am still calling them and documenting what they say because I want my money back for something they’ve never given me. This is my personal experience. If people want to join this business, they do so at their own risk as with any business however, Nerium’s promise of satisfaction guaranteed or your money back has been a major disappointment. It’s Feb 26, 2013 and still no refund.

  128. Me says:

    I want out of this. I’ve submitted a request to the company. Does anyone know what happens to your preferred customers after you end brand partnership?

    • drjohn says:

      From what we are told, your upline now owns your list – your former friends and family – to do with as they wish. You are done, out of it, toast, persona non grata.

  129. Mike says:

    Enjoyed reading your Nerium review and replies. But really appreciated the image of “The Scream” at the end of the article. My wife has signed up to be a “Brand Partner” and every morning for the last week when I awake I am pummeled by a deluge of verbiage expounding the virtues of the Nerium “business opportunity”. This morning I held my hands to my ears and coincidentally thought of “The Scream” because surely this is what I felt and must have looked liked. I then Googled your Nerium review, and there I was at the bottom of the review. Thanks for making my day.

    • drjohn says:

      There should be support groups for the spouses of MLM adherents. Maybe like Al-anon. We could call it Mal-anon.

  130. cathy says:

    I was brought into Nerium a year ago, by a friend who wouldn’t take no for an answer to the point that they actually “paid for my BP kit.” Over $500 dollars later, I was still adament that I AM NOT INTERESTED in MLM, been there done that years ago, not to mention that after I had used her sample for a week, felt it only dried out my skin I defintely didn’t want to make my skin bad! After attending a weekend conference with my friend, a comment from one of the ‘higher’ ups really surprised me. She had been up front talking during the meeting and afterward, my friend, wanting to introduce me, took me to this lady. I mentioned the drastic difference of her picture she had shown earlier and how her face looked then (crows feet gone, frown mark between eyes gone) and this lady was in her late 50’s. She bent forward to answer me and said, “Our product is an incredible night cream , liquid gold, but it doesn’t stop me from getting botox and fillers!”
    The attitude and mannerism in which Jeff Olson conducts his messages of “It’s our way or the highway” in regards to those who may be skeptical or ask questions during these events speaks for itself. Leading with control and manipulation and fear, is the first signs of cult leaders. Many times, I would hear the “higher ups” speak in different forums that I attended with an arrogance and self-righteous demeaner that if you didn’t jump in and join the amazing ground floor opportuntity, you were below them and in some ways, against them.
    I am a business women with many years experience with those that own their own businesses, and lead with success. Do your own research, wake up and see the hand writing on the wall here guys….it’s not that hard.

    • Drgeorge says:

      Cathy, thank you for your post. Anyone care to guess how long such a post would last on the Nerium facebook page? BFT is aware of at least two derogatory posts on the Nerium facebook page that lasted less than a minute before, poof!, they were digitally obliterated. We are informed it was witnessed in real time by refreshing the screen every 15 seconds..

      We all know what a ruckus it was when the little boy in the Hans Christian Andersen fable, “The Emperor’s New Clothes” had the gall to utter the obvious: “But, he isn’t wearing anything at all!”

      BFT wonders if someone at Nerium is tasked with keeping their finger poised on the delete button- the modern day equivalent of putting a hand over that child’s mouth..

  131. Jan says:

    I signed up to be a brand partner and I also know the leaders and they all are greedy and liars and will do what it takes to reach there levels and only people at the top will make great money on others ,and all my auto ships were starting to cancel because they could not afford it anymore and you have keep recruiting and selling the dream as they say to make any money ,people are all looking for a better life and they sell us on that and it never comes true and most of the leaders are paid by the company to promote the products also

  132. Jack says:

    Nerium itself isn’t “evil” nor is MLM. The problem with the business model is the minimal barrier to entry. Anyone who can pay the price of admission can become a distributor. There is no interview process to determine if an individual is going to make a good fit. Most, not all, distributors will sign up anyone with a credit card or checkbook without having a honest, in depth discussion about what is needed on their end to be successful. I’ve had a personal experience that will ring true with most who have been in the industry: A millionaire with a network marketing company told me that if I signed up with her “I’d be mentored by a millionaire” and get introduced to the big leaders, etc. I signed up and to my surprise she was nowhere to be found. I never got the mentoring she promised but she got my money. That is a classic example of the big problem and resulting negativity of this industry. I learned many valuable lessons throughout my involvement with network marketing which have made me smarter and a better leader. My advice to anyone thinking or even slightly considering getting involved in any network marketing company is: Do your due diligence just as you should before taking a corporate job; Don’t let anyone rush you into a decision; Do NOT be romanced by the compensation plans, car programs or big income earners; Talk to people already in the opportunity either in person or via internet; Read the ingredients of the product(s) and question anything you don’t understand; People with the deepest networks do the best in this business model. Also, don’t be fooled by people who come into an opportunity and rise to the top quickly. Chances are they came over from another opportunity where they were successful and their downline came with them plus companies are known to pay for the top income earners to move over to their company. I am looking at an opportunity as I write this and it’s been 4 months of research and I’m not signing up until I am 110% satisfied that this is going to be a good fit for ME, not the company. Like anything else, you can be successful if it’s the right fit and you’re willing to put the time and energy into it.

    • Drgeorge says:

      Terrific insight, Jack, and hopefully a message that visitors to BFT who are investigating Nerium will heed. Coincidentally, just yesterday (Memorial Day), a couple came to my home for a barbecue and mentioned how all their housekeeper could now talk about was Nerium AD. She was at the Irvine, CA Hyatt just days ago when Jeff Olson was participating in a highly publicized Nerium International recruiting “pep rally” with over a thousand people in attendance. She was ebullient about the riches she would soon garner “sharing” Nerium AD with anyone and everyone.

      Your comments about highly placed “upstream” success stories is right on point as well. Mark Smith, one of the most visible and highly touted success stories of Nerium came over from Pre-Paid Legal, hand-in-hand with Jeff Olson. Another visible player, Larry Zimberg came to Nerium International after success as National Game Plan Director at Beach Body, another MLM.

      Don’t be surprised if these men one day end up at the highest rungs of the pyramid ladder at another yet to be launched MLM in the future. After all, it is their chosen industry and profession. I wonder how critically they all look at the “ingredients” or are they, too, blinded by the promise of new riches.

      • Jack says:

        True Drgeorge. Like anyone starting up a new company, you call your most successful friends and offer them an “offer they can’t refuse” to join you. My experience in attending opportunity meetings is that you can sit through any of them and interchange the company name – they are all the same. There are no free rides, like anything else you need to be able to invest the time to get good at it. In his book, “Outliers”, Malcolm Gladwell’s research showed it takes 10,000 hours of practice to reach the expert level of anything. With 4 hours a day of practice, that adds up to seven years. This formula applies to network marketing. You will make money along the way but you need to keep learning to become a professional and only the people who play at that level will be the ones respected in network marketing.

    • Gabriel says:

      Really good post!!!

  133. sr_in_ca says:

    I’m not interested in using Nerium and even less interested and far more skeptical of the MLM business model. (Someone has to actually BUY the products, don’t they????) I wonder if the “results” that many people claim to have is that someone, probably the Nerium rep, was successful in getting the individual to do engage in a simple regimen that, even in the absence of the use of the Nerium product or by using any mainstream product, would result in an improvement in skin appearance? Honestly, I don’t see much difference in most of the “before/after” pictures I have come across. Wouldn’t anyone who never before dutifully washed his or her face at night with a reliable and proven cleanser and then used a compatible moisturizer see some improvement? I use Neutrogena cleanser and coconut oil right out of the jar purchased at Trader Joe’s! There’s my secret! Who wants to join my MLM?

  134. Natural skincare lover says:

    The dollars are moved around from the new recruits up the line to the NMD’s! I would be shocked if it costs Nerium skincare more than $5 to make this bottle of inflammation !

  135. BlueBoy says:

    My friend went to one of these meetings recently about Nerium Ad. He was suckered in and purchased the$500 starter kit, without doing research just by the hype of ipad and Lexus bonuses. He’s going to give me a bottle to test, I don’t have the heart to tell him no thank you, I hope this doesn’t ruin our relationship because it will definitely put a strain. I want to show him this blog and the D grade the company has in BBB. I hope he gets his money back after he realizes it will not work for him, he needs that money. I think MLM works for some people if they have a huge network of distributors and deep pockets. I would be willing to buy the product if its available over the counter where I can get my money back if it doesn’t work.

  136. perplexed says:

    A brand partner actually posted that the patented formula has stopped hiv from developing into full blown AIDS when taken internally. Buying this miracle cream funds studies to cure horrible diseases!!!!! I am about to lose a friend because I refuse to buy into this scam!!!

    • drgeorge says:

      Interesting. Nerium International bends over backwards to prevent calling its active a drug yet this brand partner is claiming the patented formula is, in fact, a drug by saying it prevents HIV from developing into AIDS. All of the research at MD Anderson and elsewhere was investigating drug effects. It’s a drug; no, it’s not. This is something the Queen of Hearts and Alice would surely find interesting.

  137. Ricky says:

    I hope you have all your facts straight about Dr. Newman and Nerium. For any doubts that Dr. Newman has any involvement with MD Anderson. here is the link to direct from them to validate the claim:

    • drgeorge says:

      Ricky, what facts do you want us to make sure we have straight? That Dr. Newman researched and published that oleandrin (the major active in nerium oleander)causes massive oxidative stress sufficient to kill certain types of cancer cells? Agreed. That he did much of his research and publishing while affiliated with MD Anderson Cancer Center? Agreed. That MD Anderson has stated it has no involvement in, does not vouch for, and does not earn profits from Nerium International’s marketing of Nerium AD? Agreed. That Dr. Newman is now evidently involved in a fee-for-service analytical laboratory affiliated with MD Anderson, as evidenced by the URL you posted? Agreed.

      BFT is going to try to contact Dr. Newman again. (Our previous attempts were unsuccessful.) In addition to questions we continue to have about the long-term safety and mechanism of action of the actives in Nerium AD, we have another. In the past few months BFT has seen claims that Nerium AD is an “anti-oxidant” and that is allegedly how it works its anti-aging miracles. If the major active in Nerium AD is oleandrin, that is the chemical equivalent of a battery changing its polarity. BFT is still willing to learn.

    • drjohn says:

      I tried the link – it’s broken. I’ll contact MD Anderson again and try to find the real story. Last time we did that they ended up publishing a disclaimer they titled “Setting the Record Straight”

  138. Egregious Philbin says:

    I was at a Starbucks today in Mesa, AZ, two Nerium goons were trying to get a poor schlub to become a distributor…it was so sad. So..I had the laptop, found the info about this crap being a pyramid scam, and turned it towards them. They were pissed. One of them said to the sucker “or, you could be like this guy..” and pointed to me. I replied..”you mean with a high paying honest job, a college degree and lots of money earned legally?” Other people at other tables started chiming in about MLM scams. Afterwards, one of them came and tried to be aggressive with me, asking what I did for a living, etc. I told him to slag off and find a non-scam related line of work. Guys looked like dumb ex-jocks…hopefully they lost the sale.

    • drjohn says:

      You win the “random acts of courage” award for standing up to bullies and speaking truth to the snake oil salesmen. Bravo!

      • Egregious Philbin says:

        These guys were idiots, this poor sucker had no money, had a court order against him for wages, etc. Several people loudly were talking about scams around them, they were pissed off. 2 beefy ex jock losers in too small Nerium polos. And their material? A cardboard flip chart, not even good enough for a laptop and a powerpoint.

        • drjohn says:

          Nerium University. What do you suppose is the minimum GPA for admission? Maybe they offer athletic scholarships. Just the kind of guys you want talking about the complexities of skin physiology and biochemistry.

  139. Susan says:

    I have a friend that used it and it worked amazing. I understand the fact that it’s poison- but what the heck is botox? People have been injecting toxins into their body for decades to a multi-billion dollar industry to a product that only is a temporary fix- and no one cared to comment about that? I guess paraliyzing your facial muscle with life threatening food poisoning is ok. Wow- what a weird world.

    • drjohn says:

      Susan, we assume you are a “brand partner” since every one of those seems to have a friend that used it and said it was amazing (usually the person just above them on the pyramid). And no, botox is not like Nerium AD. It paralyzes the muscle, temporarily. The muscle recovers after a time, with no damage in the long term, at least in theory. Nerium AD, causes massive oxidative stress, which is the same as saying it damages skin cells in the same way that too much sun does, leading to a progression of dermal aging. Over time such damage might become permanent since collagen is poorly cross linked in an environment of chronic inflammation.

  140. cindy says:

    After endless solicitation since January, I thought I’d finally look into NAD further and found your site today. I actually “bit” in January of this year after one of my dear friends asked me to try it.
    The process was much the same as most of the contributors listed with a few minor exceptions: My friend contacted me about this ‘exciting opportunity’. She sent me the samples (true cosmetic samples in foil packets – 5 of them) and my dog ate the package left at the door (she is still alive, but there was no improvement in her skin.) Therefore, I didn’t actually sample, but feeling guilty, I decided to buy a bottle.
    First comment, the smell is the same as my kitchen compost can. Mostly organic, but decaying. Can’t say that I liked it and when I told my friend it smelled odd, her response was, “really? I didn’t notice.”
    After two more months, one of which the dog again got to the package left at the door, I decided it was either the dog or my friend, but I could not afford the product and there were NO changes to my skin. I cancelled the subscription; of course I could not return the unused bottle without a restock fee!
    Suffice to say she did not let up once she found out I cancelled. The script (had to be a script) that she gave me was impressive. “You didn’t take the before and after photos, did you?” (of course not. Who DOES that?) “You didn’t use it as directed EVERY NIGHT, did you? (of course not), on and on. I finally told her that it was a bunch of crap and I couldn’t afford it. She then told me that I didn’t have to PAY for it, just become a distributor! Lordy!
    Our friendship hasn’t changed much, but I worry about how much money she spends, her new ‘friends’, and her evangelical allegiance to the organization.
    On the last occasion of the dog breaking into the package, I did learn this: The size of the actual product in relation to the size of the silver bottle is shameful! Just tap the top of the bottle upside down and the outer bottle pops off. There is 1 oz. of product inside that six inch outer bottle!

    You are welcome to edit my comments, but please do not use my email on anything public. Final suggestion: please put your most recent additions at the top of the page because when I first landed here I thought the site was stale!
    Thank you for your site.

  141. Terri says:

    In January I was approached by an acquaintance who is a brand partner for Nerium. She loaned me a bottle to try for 7 days but pushed fairly hard for me to join this exciting new venture because it was the easiest way to assure that I’d be able to retire a very wealthy woman. I wanted nothing to do with it other than to sample the product. I gave it an honest try for 4 months and it did nothing positive for my skin so I stopped buying it. Just from the description of the way the company works I knew it was a pyramid scheme of sorts. My acquaintance and her husband have sunk lots of money into buying products including books and cds that will enlighten them on how to make the most of their “business”. They attend every seminar conducted by this group, which means air fare, hotel rooms, meals and the cost of seminar attendance. They post videos that show how excited everyone is to be in the presence of the con-men who are running this operation.The people at the top keep instilling in the people at the bottom that the only way to attain the lofty goals they’re hoping for is by sinking more & more money & time into it. If you aren’t succeeding it’s just because you aren’t investing enough time in trying to recruit people to work under you. If you try to tell them that they’re being suckered they don’t want to believe it. It makes me sad that people are still falling for this type of thing. Thank you for doing such great research on Nerium!

  142. Danielle says:

    Seriously guys? There’s pros and cons to every type of business model out there. I’ve used Nerium as a customer for 4 months now and am absolutely amazed by the results I’ve gotten! If you don’t use it every night and by the instructions, you won’t see the results you’re after and if you don’t take before/after pics, you certainly have no room to sit there and complain that it’s not working, because I can guarantee it is and you are just too blind to see it with your naked eye.

    Nerium is a patented product, that’s been studied for decades and used for medicinal purposes for centuries. Is the plant toxic, yet, but have you ever stopped to think of all the other toxic plants that have been able to create some of the best medicines? I bet if you have a heart attack, you wouldn’t refuse the Dr administering medication to you – especially because you didn’t realize it was derived from a poisonous plant as well…Science is incredible and just because you don’t understand it, don’t knock it.

    Food for thought…focus on the positive in the world and the things that actually bring you joy and happiness vs crap like these articles. Just another reason the Nerium folk are so happy – they focus on creating a ripple effect of happiness and drop the drama and B.S. at the door….

    • drjohn says:

      Danielle is trying to convince us she is just a happy customer, not a brand partner tyrhying to make money selling this stuff. Yet she quotes all the usual all the usual party line nonsense, and refuses to believe that anyone could not like this. Sound familiar? As we have pointed out repeatedly, the patent says nothing about whether it works or whether it is toxic. It only covers a method of extraction of the poison from the plant. One of many methods, so sayoing it is patented is really a marketing ruse, isn’t it? Then comes the “many medicines are poisons” argument. Another ruse, since this product is not regulated as a drug (yet) because it claims to be a cosmetic only. Even though the same company sells the same substance (oleander extract) in third world countries as a cancer treatment agent. Science is incredible, and we just don’t understand it? Since you are talking to actual scientists here, I cannot understand how you expect to get away with that argument. Maybe yuou just cut and paste this from some other site where maybe you can bamboozle. We don’t buy it. Finally, I had to have a good ripple laugh at the “ripple effect of happiness”. Such a myth. What about the thousands who invested, failed, and ended up poorer (and much sadder) for the effort? Where is their joy?

  143. LGeorge says:

    This would be a great topic to give to a high school English student to teach them how to perceive bias in research… Knowing NOTHING about Nerium when I was asked by someone about it I immediately starting looking it up online… well, if I hadn’t been taught how to evaluate my sources of information I would be a huge believe in Nerium and would be making millions selling it! However…. that is not the case because when one perceives biases on research data they will most certainly and very quickly become aware of the dangers of this product and the lack of integrity in its marketing. WHO wrote the literature? HOW are they related to the issue? WHAT do they have to gain or lose in their analysis? WHEN was it written? and WHAT IS THEIR LEVEL OF EXPERTISE AND REPUTATION in the area of research? Ask yourself those questions and google it again….

  144. tb says:

    Wow! You have all been had! It’s clear that those of you that have been “scammed” by Nerium International are destined to be suckers time and time again.

  145. Carrie says:

    For anyone who is considering using this product or becoming a Brand Partner, please be aware that Nerium has an F rating with the BBB. There are good network marketing companies out there, but Nerium is not one of them.

  146. L606 says:

    I am SO happy that I came across this article. It is extremely difficult to find anything negative about this company, it is all sunshine and rainbows without any real facts. I also enjoy your sense of humor in responding to some of these comments :p I think it is great you pointed out the fact there are no trusted sources about the clinical trials conducted for the skin care cream. I think we should really be looking for the clinical trials about it curing a myriad of other things.
    This is taken directly from a picture posted on my cousins (brand partner) Facebook page

    “Exclusive rights to extract which has been known, when taken internally, to stop HIV from becoming full-blown Aids and Alzheimers, Herpes, prostate cancer, shingles and countless other diseases have gone into remission”

    uhhhh….. really? Anyone know why we are all still suffering with these diseases then? What tests have been done? I am very curious.

    Nerium has been haunting me for the last few months since my cousin and her husband joined. It literally has been IRRITATING me how obnoxious and “in your face” they are about it. My brother has actually blocked both of them from his newsfeed on Facebook. They feel the need to include it in every status, like ANYTHING. “I went to dinner with the fam, feeling so blessed to be on a positive path in 2014 thanks to Nerium” plus their team always tags them in stuff which also shows up. It is literally 2-3 things a day that are a long the lines of “We are so happy, join the happiness movement etc” They are so positive sometimes, it is a little scary – and i am a pretty positive person.

    Luckily, I can avoid the issue of when I am going to sign up by letting them know I do NOT have $500. I fear that excuse will only work for so long as they have actually helped her dad and sister with the money for their starter kit. So that along with a few friends signing up, they have been able to earn an ipad…awesome. You only paid what? $1100 for the $500 ipad? It is just sad because they really do believe in it.

    I have seen quite a few people claim that the cream gave them rashes (yikes!) I have seen some noticeable changes in a couple members of the family – i will attribute that to the “inflation” that was discussed in earlier comments. I do believe it works for some people, it is just the way that they market things that bugs me. The way that the company operates is such a scam. You are not selling skin care, you are selling a dream. Half the statuses dont even mention anything to do with skincare. Just message me if you want to be happy, have a lexus and earn $200,000 a month!

    I would really appreciate some answers from anyone involved with the company. If you can explain the answers completely, I will take back any negative statements about Nerium. Heck, I will even go to a meeting with them.

    1. Can you only earn the Lexus in 90 days? Or is there no time limit?
    2. What if your credit sucks and you cannot apply for the loan for a lexus? Since it is in your name and not nerium.
    3. Can you bypass the lexus for a cash supplement?
    4. How are the car payments calculated each month? That seems pretty scary to not know how much your next car payment will be.
    5. Where are these facts coming from? Just because someone makes a graph doesn’t mean it is true. I always see statistics, but never a source other than the Nerium website.
    6. how much do you actually make when you sell a bottle?
    7. Do you get checks every month, or is it each time someone signs up?
    8. How much do you get when the people below you sign someone up, or sell a bottle?
    9. Why do you have to pay $10 for each meeting?
    10. Are there any other monthly fees? Like website?

    • courtney says:


      My boyfriend is also a brand partner in this scam company, and i just wanted to say that the things you described about your cousin (“positive” status updates, the numerous tags, etc) are exactly the same with him! I do not know about your family, but I know that my boyfriend was never really that religious before all of this, but now all he can talk about is how “blessed” he is to have joined this company, and how he is surrounded by such “positivity”. I really am starting to think that this thing is a cult! It is ridiculous. As for your questions, I have the answers to a few of them:

      1. If i’m not mistaken, you only have 90 days to earn the Lexus.. (someone can correct me if im wrong)
      9. Because it’s a scam.. plain and simple. Lol
      10. The website they give you is seemingly free the first month, but what they fail to tell you is that after that you are charged about 24.95 each month to keep it.

      That’s all I have, but I am also curious about the other questions you asked

  147. Hoy says:

    I asked a friend who kept promoting Nerium and posting how much he was making money and the success he was experiencing, what exactly it was. Immediately I was bombarded by 3 people sending me private messages telling me how great this skin care product was and that I should try it myself and that I could make a career out of it. Right away I was skeptical, as this seemed strange for something to apparently be sold in such a fashion as to mimic a pyramid scheme. So I dug deeper. Just reading the reviews on amazon gave me the chills. Its either people giving it 5 stars promoting it because they need more people under them selling it to make money, or its people giving it 1 star because it dried out their skin, puffed up their eyes, gave them a rash or acne, or did nothing. This company is nothing more than trash I presume at this point and its a get rich quick scheme based on 1000’s of little underdogs selling it to friends or family, etc etc. UNETHICAL

  148. David P. says:

    I asked a friend who kept promoting Nerium and posting how much he was making money and the success he was experiencing, what exactly it was. Immediately I was bombarded by 3 people sending me private messages telling me how great this skin care product was and that I should try it myself and that I could make a career out of it. Right away I was skeptical, as this seemed strange for something to apparently be sold in such a fashion as to mimic a pyramid scheme. So I dug deeper. Just reading the reviews on amazon gave me the chills. Its either people giving it 5 stars promoting it because they need more people under them selling it to make money, or its people giving it 1 star because it dried out their skin, puffed up their eyes, gave them a rash or acne, or did nothing. This company is nothing more than trash I presume at this point and its a get rich quick scheme based on 1000’s of little underdogs selling it to friends or family, etc etc. UNETHICAL

    I cannot reccommend this product for the following reasons.
    1. Cost – there are many other skin care products that will satisfy skin condition without being over 100 dollars a month. There just isn’t reason to spend so much on skin care anyways, our country has gotten out of control in what satisfies them or others, it just isn’t worth the cost in the long run.
    2. The MLM network – the way that this company works is to maximize savings in advertising by promising anyone willing to do the yee old pyramid scheme style marketing act that they can somehow make a decent and quick buck, perhaps alot more. While this may be true, think about what it entails and how it affects the people that are the underdogs in the business. The overseeing marketers make the decent buck while the lessers harrass everyone they know or might know in an attempt to spread the hype about said product, essentially creating something that would not ordinarily exist considering normal marketing and advertising. It just isn’t ethical if you think about it. No single thing is THAT much better than anything else.
    3. Science – I dug a little and found that the studies done on this product found little harm to the skin from the oleander extract it harbors. Oleander is poisonous to those that do not know, and I for one would NEVER put something on my precious skin that came from such a deadly plant. NEVER, no matter how much anyone could possibly explain that studies were done etc etc. The studies were HOWEVER not conclusive on LONG TERM effects of applying said chemical to one’s skin. NO ONE KNOWS how oleander will affect skin conditions in the long run as this product has only been out 3 years and they may not be long enough.
    4. Skin – Why is something that is natural looked down upon in our society today? Skin aging is what normally happens to people as they get older, especially if you sunbath alot etc. There are things that people need and things that people want. Skin care products that cost a ton and do just a bit of change are not needed. Only things such as Accutane for people with acne are really needed. Wake up America, things are not as important as the media and hype makes it out to be, there is no need to fall into some trap and start handing your hard earned dollars over to some company that see’s fit to overmarket something and essentially pretend that it is a miracle drug (does the 20’s ring a bell?)
    5. Truth – Many of the claims Nerium has made simply are mask’s or partial truths. Considering they claim they do not need FDA approval for something derived from a poison, they sure do promote and post before and after pics with differentiating lighting, over exaggerate the outcome (especially considering the amazon reviews I have read), and perpetuate a happy lifestyle with magazines, conferences, ads, word of mouth praise, social networking advertising among friends and family, etc, when in fact something like this is not going to make someone more happy than they were before, and as such is an illusion portrayed by the media moguls and marketing cons like Jeff Olson, CEO of Nerium Int. and Prepaid Legal (it may ring a bell).
    Also there are the customers that get the cold shoulder when it comes to returning the product or has a problem with customer service. Many have posted of such occurances yet the company will always hold its motto of user friendliness. It goes deeper than that in some examples but I’ll leave it at that.
    So there you have it. Take it or leave it but I won’t be buying stock in said company if they ever to decide to become a real one. Nerium leaves a bad taste on the mouth for those savy enough to admit they are such prowlers in the nature of business, but then again who knows really, right? My 2 cents spend your money elsewhere. These guys need not further encouragement than what it’s already inflated to.

  149. Hugs says:

    I was “given” a sample of Nerium. Saw the before and after photos and was interested to try it.
    I was pushed to sell. but informed her I was not interested, and if I liked it I would simply buy it from her. I got the product and waited 5 days to start using it. I saw the “Rep” tonight and she asked if I had tried it. I said yes I started last night. She then informed me that I only had 5 days to “try” the product, and then I either had to give it back or buy it. WTF??? I have never heard of such a thing. That was not told to me when she gave me the bottle. That is disgusting. I am washing it off my face immediately. I don’t know for sure if the product I was given was previously used by someone else..because what else would they do with the remaining “SAMPLE”. I honestly could not believe it. I am giving the bottle back tomorrow. and never dealing with this product again.
    This has to be illegal.. and if it isn’t it should be.. and it is definitely IMMORAL and wait… did I say DISGUSTING???.. “Oh yeah i rubbed it on my body..then touched the bottle ..all over..and now you want it back..and you are going to give it to someone else???” GROSSSSSS

  150. Lee says:

    With all that stuff in it I would be surprised if there wasn’t some benefit even if they didn’t put ANY Oleander in it.
    And it stinks. Yes I tried it, waste of money and I can’t be bought into the business.
    I heard you can get a good skin change using a face cream with vitamin C and Hyaluronic acid.
    I have a friend who wants me to get nerium and become a member.
    MLM’s may be ok and work for some people but I think the product is really more the questionable thing here. Bad smell, no good results.
    Lots of people believe in homeopathic stuff and it has nothing in it.
    Maybe the benefit from Nerium is because you have to hold your face in a bad pose because of the smell. That would tighten up anything.
    I hope my friend, who gave up a career as an RN (really stupid), does not end up like some other people I know that got into MLM businesses and failed.
    If it works for you great, but I would be very skeptical and want to see REAL research.
    This seems too much like LIGHTWAVE Therapy.(another MLM) product from a few years ago. If you know your science you know nerium is junk research science too, like magnet bracelets.
    People want to get rich quick, change how they look, find a cheep happiness pill.
    This is Earth people, there are folks out there who are masters at sales and could sell you property on the moon if you let them.
    There is no quick fix.
    And remember…..If it looks, or sounds, to good to be true………….!!!!!!!

  151. Lee says:

    I have pre cancerous cells on a patch on my face….maybe I should try the nerium on that as it is a poison for cancer cells. I can’t think of any other reason to use it.
    There is either so little Oleander in it that it’s effect is from something else in the ingredients or some day lots of people will be in trouble because of what they have done to their own skin.

  152. vikki says:

    I have used Nerium for 14 months now. My skin has never looked better. Lots of opinions and very little facts in this article. Iguess you felt the need to tear down a credible product to promote your own. Shady, at best.

    • drjohn says:

      Let’s see — 10,000 products out there. We had better get busy if we are going to tear them all down. And what, may I ask, do you base your opinion of “credible” on? If it is the science, then you at least owe us an explanation. Answer the key question – how can a product/key ingredient (a cancer drug in some countries) that the discover proves is “massively oxidizing” be now an “antioxidant” and good for skin? We await your answer. Need facts? read the series of posts (see display at right—>).

      As to “shady, at best” we can only hope for you that this does not describe your face should you experience post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation (PIH). You may want to read more about PIH and skinflamm’aging.

  153. LEE says:

    For vikki:
    My friend who gave up being an RN has been using this product for about 8 months (so she claims). She came to see me last weekend. I saw no change in her appearance, though I noticed a change in her personality that makes me very sad. She never used to push her beliefs on other people and was a rather gentle individual. Now she SELLS. Friendly conversations have become sales videos and I now get directed to her business website.
    Brain washing at its best
    I tried the stuff and it does not work.

  154. LEE says:

    Sorry for the length but I had to get it out.
    Previous statements have been made about the process of “medically extracting” the poisonous product from the Oleander plant and making it non-poisonous. There is no “extraction process” that I know of that can do this, but, it could be changed at the molecular/chemical level by adding or subtracting molecules or other chemicals after extraction. This would mean that their “medical extraction process” is a false statement and/or the extract is actually something else entirely.
    Typically poison is a poison is a poison until you change it. (after extraction!)
    It has also be brought to notice that the potential cancer fighting ability of the extracted poison is not having the hoped for success. It is well known that poisons, in controlled dosages, can have very beneficial effects not only in fighting cancer but in other medical applications as well.
    It should also be remembered by everyone that anecdotal statements are NEVER scientific proof of the validity of any given product.
    I do not believe in this product not because someone else said it did not work, but because I tried it and it does not hold up to the claims made by the company.
    The sellers increased incomes are based on their ability to sell product that will encourage new partners to join the business under their membership. MLM businesses are nothing new and not all are deceiving. The people at the top can makes millions while the lower down the ladder you go the less you make. During the initial phases of a new business those with the $$$$$$ will often reinvest, as incentives, to reward participants and encourage the continued business plan, which is, in an MLM, increased “partners” (sellers of product and memberships).
    I have previously stated that we do not know how much, if any, Oleander extract is even in the lotion. The other ingredients will likely have a positive result without the Oleander extract. The actual quantity of oleander extract could be so low that it really is a moot point but can be claimed to be an ingredient in the product. Also if the “extract” is in a homeopathic dosage then we all know that there is nothing there to worry about anyway.
    New and longer time members will be hard pressed to change their minds about the truth of the product, one way or the other, because they have an investment in it. If it works regardless of the reason or the actual ingredients then it works. It could be years before a life threatening result is exposed, if ever. The member may like the income regardless of the ethical nature and/or really believe in the product without the scientific evidence to back it up.
    In this day and age many people will take anecdotal evidence as fact. They will also believe the placebo effect is evidence. This is simply a case of lack of education. Though ignorance is not a reason to do something it may explain, in part, why it happens.
    It is widely known but unfortunately little believed that sellers at the top know how to play the game. There are even coaching courses and programs that teach you how to SELL. If you have the knack, the skill, you could sell almost anything to almost anyone, and as long as people believe in or seek the magic bullet they can be caught in a very seductive web. This is part of the placebo effect.
    The friend I spoke of before who gave up her job as an RN believes she looks different. That belief makes her carry herself differently, eat better, exercise more, use lotion (any lotion is good is you don’t tend to use any). After using this product for months the only thing I truly noticed was she was a bit more relaxed (hospitals are stressful places) but she was pushier.
    Few people like to admit making an error, especially one that cost them money. It’s easier to really believe, some with a religious fervor. This product may work for some but I do not believe it is because of Oleander. READ THE INGREDIENTS.
    I hope the toxin is not even a factor and the sellers and users can rest easy that they are using a product that may or not work but its most unfortunate components are a ridiculous price and the terrible smell.
    Thanks for your patience


    • drgeorge says:

      Lee, your comment is one of the more insightful ones submitted in the Nerium debate. In our early posts on Nerium, the issue was raised that the the amount of oleander in the product may be very small, and perhaps nothing more than a marketing “hook” that capitalizes on the name recognition of the M D Anderson Cancer Center and the holy grail of searching for a cancer cure. The potentially fatal flaw in the marketing blitz (certainly not fatal yet as sales appear to continue to surge) is the disconnect between the purported science of oleander – cytotoxic because of massive oxidative cellular effect as published by Nerium scientist Dr. Robt. Nefwman and the connection between such cellular effects and pro-aging inflammation. Perhaps the reason we have never heard from Nerium in this debate is “the emperor is wearing no clothes” and the Nerium executives have known this all along. And the cash register grows fuller and fuller. A reasonable opinion it seems.

  155. Adrian says:

    Wow! Had no Idea there were so many people that have absolutely nothing better to do than bash an amazing product and company. Please people do your homework. It’s no wonder why our Country is in the shape it’s in with so many uninformed people believing crap they read on the internet, that is posted by people that have nothing better to do. Please do your own homework and learn first hand the truth. I heard a very appropriate Chinese Proverb today. “The one that says it can’t be done should not interrupt the one that is doing it”
    You usually get what you expect. Whether you think you can or you think you can’t you’re usually right. People that join MLM’s need to do their homework there are several very reputable companies, Nerium being one of them. Unfortunately there are many scammers in every industry. Your current job for instance, they pay you wholesale and get retail for your efforts how’s that. Nerium is a Real Company, with real products and a real compensation plan. It takes work and a real commitment. Jeff has truly built a Legacy Company my wife and I are proud to work with them. My best to everyone whatever you decide to do in life. Network marketing isn ‘t for sissy’s.

    • drjohn says:

      There you have it. All MLM/Nerium critics are 1. uninformed, with nothing better to do, and 2. sissies (we spelled it right – they didn’t – I guess only sissies can spell). We had to remove a link to Adrian’s website, by the way. Tsk, tsk.

  156. Lee says:

    Another long one

    I would hate for people to think I am lazy so I decided to respond to your comment.
    I currently work in a hospital lab and have worked in a few other departments as well. In between running tests I do occasionally have time to peruse the internet for interesting thoughts. It may take me an entire 8 hour shift to come up with a response as I do take my position very seriously. Every sample I touch is a person in need of care.
    As my friend (PREVIOUSLY MENTIONED) is newly involved in NERIUM I have concerns. Hopefully she will make a fortune and no one will suffer any ill consequences. I do know that she, like other sellers of the product, is touting non-substantiated science as fact. It’s not that I want to bash the company, regardless of what you think, but I once joined an MLM and then did the homework. It cost me in the long run but I finally got out. One should do the homework first and get from any reputable company full disclosure. This may not include proprietary chemical recipes but it will include ALL scientific research results which include unbiased primary, secondary and unaffiliated double and triple blind tests with valid documentation and results.
    There is not enough scientific research to date to support the claims made by NERIUM other than the plethora of anecdotal reports. These, as stated before, are not acceptable as proof. There are other products on the market that most likely work as well as NERIUM and cost a lot less because you don’t have to send money flowing upstream.
    There is no scientific OR anecdotal proof that the Oleander extract itself is doing anything at all. You are selling this product on faith. You believe what you were told about it on faith. You are promoting it on faith.
    It is sad that we as a people have become so vein about our appearances and so desperate to change them that we seek “THE CURE” rather that eat right, exercise, drink plenty of water, get good sleep, and find the beauty in the individual.
    I have seen the placebo effect work in truly beneficial ways and also seen it fail to the health detriment of patients who ended up needing extensive medical intervention after seeking their quick fix. If NERIUM is proven, through proper scientific research, to actually have a benefit as stated by the manufactures, then good on them. But to date there is no proof. (no verifiable data).
    If it works for you to sell this product (with no real research) and entice new “partners” under your membership so that your profits increase, so be it. You may even have the honest intention that they obtain real success. The product may one day be vindicated against all skeptics.
    If it works as stated it will be on the general market shelves soon and cost less anyway. (other manufactures)
    Then we come to the other Nerium product…..HAPPINESS.
    Have you seen that? They actually sell it. I was given a magazine by the afore mentioned friend. My newest concern is CULT. Yes I have researched that phenomenon. There are some people who are almost hardwired to follow groups like this and unfortunately my friend is one. This won’t be the first time she stands to lose a lot of money, or perhaps be caught up in something she cannot get away from.
    Yes happiness is wonderful and we all seek it. You can’t buy happiness.
    I can only say that the angst you feel about this website will not change with NERIUM partners touting the unproven benefits. It would, perhaps, be better for you if you just didn’t read all the submissions from all of us who, in your words, do not have a life (not quoted). You will always find that skeptics can have a change of mind if they are given the scientific proof to verify the claims. The problem is that even you have not been given that.

  157. Steve Wall says:

    I signed on as a $500 BP after my family member kept hounding me. It’s easy to cancel the monthly autoship……for that month only! The next month shows up again by surprise. The best thing to happen for me was that I had to change credit card numbers (due to a security breach at Target). Suddenly, Nerium couldn’t charge me anymore! I’m free!

    • courtney says:

      a blessing in disguise! did you have to pay anything extra to quit as a BP?

      • drjohn says:

        Wow – a job you have to pay to quit? That’s news.

        • courtney says:

          Not sure if that was sarcasm or not. But yeah they make you pay to start working for them, so paying to quit doesn’t seem too far fetched.

          • drjohn says:

            In other words, they get you coming and going. Odd that this is billed as a money making scheme for you. Seems more like a money making scheme for them.

  158. Katie says:

    This is the craziest stuff I have ever seen. I’m sorry, but bless their poor little hearts these people selling this stuff are completely delusional and I just feel so incredibly sorry for them! And you two are brave to lay all of this out there, not to mention incredibly patient. I cannot even get over how stupid these people selling this product sound. I’m not trying to be mean, it’s just completely baffling to me. So, I’d just like to say thank you for putting this out there. I have “friends” on Facebook pushing this crap and I have lost every single bit of respect I ever had for them, and honestly, have realized they are just a bit simple. Which is fine. I have no opinion on the product, I’m happy with what I use today, but “friends” who are WAY more interested in recruiting me into this absolutely ridiculous money drain aren’t friends. That said? If they all get a Lexus and and iPad, fantastic! Good for them. And if the product is a miracle product, well fantastic! But good Lord, it is a pyramid scheme. No need to be so defensive about that.

  159. Joy says:

    First of all, I am a Brand Partner with Nerium. Everyone has opinions and ideas about the product. Here is mine.
    Nerium works for me. My 30 day results were amazing as well as others I have witnessed.

    The smell is bad, I will admit.

    I realize that the science behind Nerium has been questioned. I believe that anything we ingest or use topically should be 100% safe. There are many foods that we ingest daily that contain trace toxins. (Apricots, apples, tea, coffee, etc). It’s the amount that’s consumed that matters. We cannot avoid all toxins. We live in a world of them!
    Botox is one of the most toxic chemicals and yet, we shoot it into our face. It is now a treatment for Migraines ( which I’m sure is FDA approved.)
    What I’m trying to say is that you have a choice. Use it or don’t use it!

    I will NEVER push my product or my company or anyone. In fact I encourage people to make an informed decision when considering buying into the business. I don’t force, hide, rearrange the truth, or beg. In the end it will be my reputation as a business owner that is at stake.

    • drgeorge says:

      Joy, we are pleased your experience with Nerium has been positive, and with postitive cash flow. And, we truly appreciate the civil tone of your comment, something we value. Ad hominem attacks, epithets, and profanity don’t advance the conversation, nor advance what BFT has always sought, a debate about science and safety. Some of your Nerium compatriots don’t have your good manners. We wait, nonetheless, for an explanation of the alchemy that transforms a proven cytotoxin (cell killer) into something one would want to slather onto their face on a daily basis. We appreciate the fact that trace toxins can unavoidably be found in some of what we encounter in daily life. Except for Nerium AD, however, we are unaware, of deliberate efforts to include them as active ingredients in consumer products without an explanation of 1) whay and how they work, and 2) why they are a “good” and not a bad thing to use long term.

  160. SLH says:

    Hmmmm… I was surfing the web trying to find objective critiques of Nerium (the product) and was happy to find a site that didn’t appear to be affiliated with Nerium. But yours is SO negative and SO subjective, it smacks a bit of an anti-commercial, i.e. somebody who’s either sour on anybody else’s good thing or even paid to poison the well. I’m a pretty tough sale on pie in the sky products and/or opportunities. but I don’t buy the harshness of this article. Way too much cynicism and exaggeration that’s simply not true. I’ve been trying the product for a couple of weeks. It doesn’t smell wonderful but it’s nowhere near repulsive. Not even what I consider unpleasant. And in the two weeks I’ve used it I HAVE noticed slight results. So you lost me already. I’ll keep surfing and hope I find some comprehensive info that IS more objective.

    • drjohn says:

      Oh, you want a more “objective” review. But science is reasonably objective, and you didn’t like what we said about that. You are going to have to find a reviewer that doesn’t already have knowledge of the long term effects of the application of inflammatory substances to skin (i.e. skinflamm’aging). You’d better eliminate anybody who actually knows anything about dermatologic physiology & biochemistry, or aging. And don’t talk to aesthetic formulation chemists because they see a lot of unsupported science claims and tend to be rather cynical. And better find someone who thinks MLM’s are a great place to find really innovative products that really work, but because the usual retail routes are biased or something so you will never find them there. And certainly you must ignore doctors in aesthetic practice like plasticdoc, a plastic surgeon who comments here. Let’s see – who does that leave? How about Paula the cosmetics cop? (no, she wrote a harsh review). Hmmm. I guess that leaves Nerium brand partner selling sites (you will find lots of those). If you can find a single review that is both positive and explains how a substance known to cause massive oxidative stress can be good for skin, please let us know. We’ve been looking for years.

    • drgeorge says:

      SLH, let us know when you find objective information that supports the notion that a cytotoxin applied chronically to normal skin is going to be benficial in the long run. That, in a nutshell, is the crux of the controversy you find so subjective on BFT’s part. We asked a fundamental scientific question regarding the mechanism of action by which an “accidental” finding of skin improvement occured. Accidental findings don’t stay accidental for long. There is either a scientific explanation, or this is all about marketing “smoke and mirrors”. (The skincare industry if rife with that.) Evidently, based on the total silence of the Nerium experts who first observed the unexplained phenomenon, they must still be perplexed. It is not very comforting when there is only silence coming from the folks who bear the responsibility of answering questions about the public safety of their product.

  161. LEE says:

    I mentioned this before and don’t know if it’s really a big deal or not

    The NERIUM people have a web site devoted to HAPPINESS
    this in and of its self is not a bad thing

    We could use more happiness in the world right now
    this has a strange cultish feel about it, in a wierd way it seems to go well with the MLM NERIUM product.
    As stated before….my friend turly seems to be “FOLLOWING” the NERIUM sales pitch

    I just wonder what anyone here thinks

  162. phil says:

    A friend of ours came to our house (driving a Lexus no less) to give us an introduction to this product. She told us that she has made a substantial amount of money in the two years she has been with this MLM. I do believe she has earned quite a bit of money doing this, but like you said earlier, MLMs are not for everyone. She is a very active person and belongs to multiple organizations.. I on the other hand, earn my keep the old fashioned way, with a job. She left us a bottle and I have not seen any improvement to my skin in the past week and am concerned for the health of our skin due to the fact that oleander kills cells causing inflammation, thus giving the impression that wrinkles are going away. I do not think I will join simply because MLMs are just not for me.

  163. SMH says:

    Sucker born everyday…… I am sure it has some benefits but it is not a miracle worker. Women are so desperate to believe something is working i am pretty sure if you told some to rub monkey poop on their faces it would decrease aging signs…they would!!!!! I have noticed most using it look swollen and red in the face.

  164. Smilzalot says:

    An ad showed up on my timeline in Facebook so I posted the link to this article. My comment was deleted and I was blocked within 5 minutes LOL!!!

    • drjohn says:

      They are slowing down. Used to be they could expunge mention of us and links in under one minute. Must be losing zeal.

  165. Robert Fagnant says:

    Here’s another thing they do. After you are a thousand dollars down like us Brand Partners and you are about to get the product free after building your downline, your upline can decide to move your downline to some else! We quit after that!

  166. Teresa says:

    My beautician, who has her own shop of 20 years is amazing. She is creative, artistic and practical. She has been selling Nerium for over a year. My husband is a mechanic and her husband owns a gas station. They are both the type of men that wear jeans and t shirts. Mine rides a harley and hers is a cowboy. Mark, my hubby bought 200 gallons of deisel for the farm and came home and said “Jesus Raymond looks young.” He was using Nerium. Also, I am so impressed with how my beautician looks. She had such huge pores on her face and now she looks great. I am not a Nerium user but wish I could afford it.

    • drjohn says:

      ROFL! Sorry, I couldn’t get the image out of my mind of these two cowboy types and “Jesus, Raymond looks young” … sounds like a setup for a parody of Brokeback Mountain. Two virile guys, a tent, a bottle of Nerium … who knows what might happen. I want the movie rights!

  167. MrsM says:

    After reading information on this site, I decided against becoming a brand partner. I had already ordered my launch package. I returned it upon arrival and called Nerium support for a return number. I was worried about the refund I would receive as some people have posted reports of very little money being returned to them. I have to say Nerium support was efficient and helpful, and I got 90% of my money back, minus a restocking fee. Since I had been forewarned about the fee, I expected it. I did not try the product because the more I thought about it, the more I was uncomfortable with putting something with a label of “toxic” or “poisonous” on my face. I have friends very much invested in cash and time in Nerium. I’m hoping for their sakes that it is a profitable experience for them.

  168. Brian Moore says:

    Haha! You guys are ridiculous. I was skeptical for months. My wife used Nerium (the correct Nerium AD) and after two weeks had amazing results. Not to mention my own results. I’m a fan. I’m a believer. And I’m in after seeing what this stuff does. Bloggers make money per click so why not attack a product that is taking the market by storm eh?

    • drjohn says:

      Bloggers make money per click? But after 3 years we still have nothing here to click on! Back to attacking the messenger, are we?

      Taking the market by storm? How about taking a market by deception? MLM’ers make money by convincing friends and family to empty their pockets for worthless products. You can call that a storm; I’d call it a plague.

  169. John Vargo says:

    Wow. ‘sounds to me like someone has an axe to grind. Are you against MLM in general or is it the Nerium product? Or, perhaps, you are involved with a competitor’s product? I have found Nerium AD to work well toward moisturizing and making my face look more youthful. As for the people complaining about the smell… are you kidding me? Personally, I experience no off-smell. I know we all have different opinions, however, this post clearly was biased from the start.

    • drjohn says:

      We have received this exact same “WOW”comment before. Likely one of their cut & paste “only people with a bias could not like Nerium” myths in the making. Sir, did you bother to read any of what we had to say on the science? Would you care to offer a comment on any of that that? Probably not – your assignment was to respond as you have to anywhere you find a comment on the web critical to Nerium. Don’t waste time reading them or becoming educated. They despise educated.

  170. Spaz says:

    I found this post, after being somewhat aggressively pitched Nerium, at a family holiday get-together. It made me feel weird and gross. I stumbled upon this post, and can’t tell you how much I appreciate this information. Thank you for all of this information!!!!!!!!

    • drjohn says:

      Kind of sucks the family bonding joy out of holidays, doesn’t it? Market thy family? Introduce them to brand partner hell? Make your family tree a pyramid? Skin so scary for dear Aunt Mary? Throw Grandpa Gus under the bus. Make a buck off Uncle Chuck?

  171. Laura Ferrell says:

    I just would like to give a fair estimate of my experience. IT WORKED FOR ME!! Not so much a noticeable difference with wrinkles but a big difference with the fading of the liver spots on my face and chest from sun exposure. Too bad this product didn’t work for you. I was also NOT offended by the smell either.

    • drjohn says:

      Color changes are interesting. Sometimes initiating the inflammation cascade causes brown spots to fade, in some people. Same people who may experience hypopigmentation (white blotches) in response to severe inflammation, such as an infection. But for most people inflammation increases pigmentation, especially if darker skinned to begin with. Ff course inflammation does not help wrinkles, although it may worsen them. It has the same effect as smoking (inflammation & oxidative stress intimately related).

  172. Sh'reen says:

    27 April 2014

    Just attended a Nerium Conference in Phoenix yesterday. I signed up as a Brand Partner last year in the middle of a divorce. A friend of mine, who had been using it for 3 weeks, said she loved it and gave me 2 mags to read. Called the fellow on the label and he instantly put me on a 3-way call with his up-line.

    I went to the Spring Bash 2013 Las Vegas convention, stayed with my cousin, and joined as a Brand Partner. Then went to the 2013 Fall Bash in Long Beach and stayed with my sister. The only way I could afford these was because I had family in both places. I have also attended smaller get-togethers in the Phoenix area. I live in Yuma, AZ which is a 3 hour drive. I have friends there as well and other things to take care of – my attorney – for one. So it is not all for Nerium. I am not a joiner by nature. The repetitiveness and exceptionally loud music that (I thought we learned decades ago was bad for us on many levels) are predominate at these events. So I always sit in the back row on the aisle so I can escape easily.

    Except for this last one. I sat right up front on the aisle and got a “close up” feel about what was really happening. I came away realizing that some success might be attained with an immense amount of work.
    The woman who spoke – for about 3 hours – never shut up. Talked so fast that I got a headache.

    The expense for anyone to go to one of these conventions is beyond the person who has just joined. As of now, I will probably quit. After listening to that woman and others trying to convince me that this was NOT about $ – which of course is nonsense – added to my backing away. All they talk about is what they have : the Lexus, the income, etc. There was no mention of anyone who stayed in their small house and gave the Lexus away and many of the bottles they get for free. I give mine away and have made no $. It also freaks me out that they advise to share bottles with other people. That’s not happening on my watch.

    The 2 people directly above me are not working the business because they are busy doing their own businesses. And the 3rd person is so busy flying around the country with Nerium he can’t even answer one question for me – and he was at the meeting in Phoenix yesterday. It is the same elitist attitude that I began to shy away from as a child when my parents were members of a country club.

    Even if Nerium is the best thing that ever happened on this earth since the Oleander plants in my back yard and all over Yuma, AZ I probably don’t belong in such a community.

    Yes, if I had someone sleeping with me other than my dog I wouldn’t be using the night cream. It DOES smell – natural smell ? – OK – but it certainly is not the lovely scent you get from the desert Chocolate Flower. Yes – we have Chocolate Flowers in the Spring. So I might just wear it in the day. Why not ?

    Lastly – a question that was brought up here. Where do we want to put our energies ? Mine are writing and art and learning to play the violin. Do I really want to forgo those ? No, I don’t.

  173. Michele says:

    Thanks for this informative review of the products Nerium AD. It is the first one I have found in months of searching! I have been frantic to find out because my daughter who has a great job and future ahead of her has become one of their victims but she doesn’t know it yet. I have watched her grow into one of their Brand Partners in a couple of months. She is only 46 and I am seeing her posts on Facebook like she is an old woman or that she despises how old ladies look. I have never taught her this. I told her it was an MLM scheme in the beginning which I realize now has really fueled her hatred. When you wrote about it being cult like I realize that is what is happening to her. She if livid if anyone gets to close to her with the truth about this highly toxic product that is covered up. Nerium is the most toxic plant on the earth! She told me they proved it doesn’t effect anyone but I told her if you rub it into your skin it will go into your body and organs! I predicted the company will fail within a year and there could even be deaths and she might be sued and lose her house! She has a degree in criminology with honors and is a licensed criminal investigator into Medicare/Medicaid fraud. It must be a real feather in that company’s cap to have recruited her, preying on her insecurities. I don’t know why she has them, she is very pretty. Again thanks for this review. It is the first support since the Nerium AD scam blew into my life. My daughter and I aren’t speaking.

  174. David Webster says:

    I am amazed at the hate that is expressed by people. Clearly the product works.
    You can google GOD and fine plenty of hate directed at our lord the purest entity in the world. Some people simply find happiness in spewing hate. Review any 5 star hotel and you will surely find hate filled reviews because the hotel forgot to put a mint on their pillow. I invite all the haters to put their money where their mouthes are and request a personal meeting with Jeff Olson, Neriums president. You haters would never do that because you don’t want the facts to get in the way of your hate filled agendas. Arrange to meet face to face with those you condemn rather than slandering good hard working people.

  175. Serenity Seeker says:

    Thanks so much for this article and series. Unfortunately, I’m reading this after I signed up to become a Nerium Brand Partner. But it’s not too late, and hopefully more people will research before signing up. I did my research, and ironically, only positive articles came up. I have signed up for other mlm’s that required less investment and I swore never to do it again! But this company is Very convincing! What I have discovered, after charging $500 on my credit card to join as a brand partner, mlm’s prey on middle class people that aren’t happy in his or her current economic and career standing that they want what everyone else has. The truth is that these companies make the developers Very Very rich, while the middle class, or poor, get them more rich! They also make an ungodly amount in shipping charges! $10 each time and if you want the current special, ie, the Firm “buy-one-get-one” you have to pay for a separate shipment in addition to the Auto-ship required to be a preferred customer. Before I found this article, I also found comments made that quoted this as “snake oil” and that is exactly right. It has only been a week, and I didn’t get my “kit” when I was guaranteed. I called to cancel, and they informed me of a “disclaimer” that is subject to only a 90% refund and a 10% restocking fee. To sign up as a partner, there is a $99 option, but the partners strongly discourage this and recruits are pushed to purchase the $499 or $999 packages! I could go on and on, but hopefully, I’ve learned my lesson, and prevented at least one person from losing their hard-earned money, and/or losing important friendships and family relationships.

  176. Butch says:

    After spending about an hour reading these posts and replies, I have to say I was actually thinking about trying the product as a friend of mine is a distributor. However, after reading this content I wouldn’t touch the stuff with someone else’s hands!

    #1 If the product was as good as they say it is, it would be a world wide phenomenon by now. but, like the doc said, and he’s right, all you ever hear about is the Biz opp side. A true miracle product would take no time at all for the word to get out and everyone would be using it.

    #2 Has anyone considered that those who say the product is working, or how much they love the it, could that possibly be a placebo affect. We know how powerful the mind can be when it comes to believing something works when in reality it shouldn’t be working at all and maybe doing long term harm to the body. The way the product is so over hyped and people want so bad to believe it will make them look and feel younger, I believe one’s belief can be so strong that they may actually see some short term positive results. And I emphasize short term.

    #3 It doesn’t take a doctor to be able to conclude that anything that kills cells would be harmful to the body. I would think that the way to go would be something that rejuvenates cells, and keeps them healthy. Common sense would tell us, “Take care of the cells and the cells will take care of us.” Am I making any sense here?

    I get that people are wanting to find ways to bring their dreams to fruition. And there are ways to make money on the internet. I’m an online marketer myself, and I teach mind set. One of the first things I tell people who are looking for ways to make money online is, “DO YOUR DD!!” So many jump in blinded by dollar signs only to be disappointed when they learn that most of what they heard and saw was merely over blown hype. It’s rampant and it’s everywhere!

    Doc I do disagree with you a bit on why people fail in online marketing. Yes there are a lot of scams out their. But the reason there is, is because of the people who jump in without doing any research. They’re not doing their DD. And a lot of biz opps count on these people. These people are their prey, and unfortunately there’s a lot of prey out there with the way the economy is today. Education is the key to keep from getting scammed. If one doesn’t educate themselves first, then they have no one to blame but themselves when things don’t turn out the way they hoped. I’ll end with this. Once again, “DO YOUR DD!!”

    • drjohn says:

      DD = due diligence, I believe. Not to be confused with bra sizes or baby talk for bodily functions.

  177. shpitzy says:

    Hi drjohn I LOOOOVED reading this post. There is nothing I enjoy more than a good vigorous wife joined arbonne 5 months ago and just came back from their conference in vegas. We are really enjoying the ride and making some money (we made back our initial $2,500 investment in 4 months) people (most not all) are enjoying the product. Do you have any info on arbonne ?

    • drjohn says:

      Arbonne has no nasty ingredients and no major blowhards and probably tell the truth most of the time. But they are an MLM, so they can’t be all good. The products are quite simple and plain – moisturizers, sunscreens, cleansers and the like. No pretense at sexy new ingredients or new science. Just the basics, ma’am. There is merit in that. And they sell their do one thing products at around $50 which is way overpriced for the ingredients, but still only half of what an unsuspecting partygoer might pay for Nerium AD, or its lightning strikes twice Canadian cousin. But then they put these do one thing products in sets of 6 or 7 and charge ~$350 for them. Really, you could shop at Target and get products of similar function & overall quality for maybe 1/10 of that. Although the packaging is nice. Maybe its a brand thing. $1 worth if ingredients, $49 dollars worth of marketing. Do people really pay that kind of dough for those simple minded personal care products? It amazes me. Oh the wonders of MLM. Its a whole different economy unto itself.

  178. Sgm1764 says:

    I went to a friends party and the presenter was using the pitch of how quickly the product would make your face smooth. Also, it was good on zits on adolescents faces. After hearing this I asked to use some for eight days and would provide the results. My son began using the cream on day 1. I took a before picture. After 8 days of using this cream his face not only became more broken out with zits but huge raised knots/cysts started erupting and they would hurt. I immediately instructed him to stop using the product. I returned it to the distributor and my son’s face cleared within a few days by using Dial soap. So Nerium is not for my son nor me.

  179. Samantha says:

    I just wanted to say thanks, as I’ve read this article and blog after being approached by a “friend” to become a brand partner. I thought this is my “friend” why would he lie to me? I never thought of the immensity of this situation. Thank you for guiding with knowledge and all the comments helped too. I did notice however when they wanted me to sign up, I was immedietly on a conference call with a successful NFL Brand Partner who said he makes more money doing this than working for the NFL, but says he still has to work in TV when I asked why he has another job. His answer was that he needs to stay connected with people to sell the product. Hmmmm…..the next day I was another conference call with them, when finally I had to say my vacation would get in the way, maybe in a few months… RELENTLESS. Also my “friend” said the exact same sales pitch that many talk about here, sad I got warped by a friend. My friend also recently got a 2015 Lexus after 6 months with the company. I’m wondering what the fine print is, anywho! glad to stay away and live peacefully.

  180. Michelle says:

    I’m curious what the good doctors’ thoughts are on the latest Nerium Firm cellulite cream craze. My Nerium obsessed friend recently posted that “Dr. Nordyke, owns a Medical Spa in California and specializes in reducing cellulite for his clients. In fact, he purchased a $90,000 dollar Venus Machine whose sole purpose is to increase collagen and diminish cellulite. Dr. Nordyke, charges clients up to $2,500 for treatments with this machine!
    Why is this so significant? Dr. Nordyke said that the NeriumFirm is ALREADY delivering BETTER results than his Venus treatments AND his clients haven’t even been on the Firm for 90 days yet!!”

    I found this to be a pretty outrageous claim because 1) why would an MD who is getting paid $2500/client trade that for a fad skin cream and 2) the cellulite cream was just shipped out a few weeks ago for the first time so how could this be true? So I looked into him a little bit and found that this person was a podiatrist and hasn’t held a medical license in CA since 1991. I can find no evidence of this spa he owns. Apparently, he is just another brand partner (albeit a National Marketing Director) but isn’t that unethical? Does no one care about these little details?! I am in total disbelief of the Nerium Firm before and after pictures. There is no possible way a cream could generate these results.

    • drjohn says:

      Michelle, your timing is perfect. We just posted a NeriumFirm review. And good work on the Nordyke investigation. According to the horrible review he got on yelp, looks like he left practice. Does this mean we will be seeing NeriumToe soon? Since many have compared the smell of Nerium AD to sweaty socks, it seems the next logical step.

  181. Craig Peloquin says:

    I love this blog! I forward articles to my team every day.

    Let me start this entry by saying that I am the Vice President of an anti aging skincare company that is MLM, but I do not have an agenda and I am not going to try and recruit anybody here. I just want to share my story and my opinion of MLM companies like Nerium.

    I have been involved in the MLM industry for almost 2 decades, so I guess you could say i am biased. That’s okay. At least you know where I stand.

    A very close family friend was introduced to Nerium in Canada back in September 2013, when they were in pre-launch. She asked me to come with her due to my extensive MLM experience.

    We were told that we had to smuggle the products into Canada – yes, smuggle. You had to sign up as an American and have your products shipped to a US address. Then you had to go across the border and pick them up and bring them back personally. Oh, and everything had to stay “under the radar” we were told.

    Now I can see why. The original NeriumAD product was never approved in Canada, so it seems that they had to create their new International Product, Optimera.

    Needless to say, after listening to the pitch for an hour, I told my friend not to join. Unfortunately, she already had joined, and she dropped $500 for her and her son dropped another $500. She was still in the 30 day return period so I told her to contact her upline and get the refund done. Her upline delayed the return process so that she was outside the 30 days and couldn’t return them. Then offered to buy her products at 75% of the original price.

    So I can understand why people get a bad taste about MLM companies and MLMers.

    Not all MLM companies are bad, most are very good.

    Not all MLM distributors are liars – just most of them! ;)

    MLM jokes of the day (you have to be able to laugh at yourself)

    Q: How do you know an MLM Brand Partner is lying?
    A: His/Her lips are moving.

    Q: How many MLM distributors does it take to screw in a light bulb?
    A: 10. 1 to hold the light bulb and 9 to explain the compensation plan until the room starts to spin.

    I can tell you that it is companies like Nerium that make us look bad. We get lumped into the same mix. Fortunately, we don’t build our company based on lies and deception. You won’t see our company all over this blog. We are all about the product and the science behind the product. Product comes first. Yes, if you want to make some money, we are an MLM company and you can become a distributor, but when you ask one of our distributors about how the products work, they can tell you. You can go to or google scholar and read the hundreds (yes hundreds) of scientific papers.

    When you have a real product with real science, you don’t need to photoshop Ray Liotta to get people to join.

    Not all MLM companies are the same. Do your homework. Don’t believe the hype. Believe the science. If you can’t find the science on google scholar or pubmed, it doesn’t exist.

    • drjohn says:

      Hi Craig,

      Good morning. Some days I can take a leap of faith and believe that MLM’s don’t have to be evil. But I have yet to see any one of them get it right on the science. Some are downright whacky, and others are just overpriced versions of what you can buy at target for much less. Even Avon (a reputable company with good roots) refused to own up to their fibrosis gene blunder. The science part was bad, the cover up (or ignore) was worse.

      So here is what you can do to convince me otherwise. You have revealed that you are a senior executive in a science-based anti-aging skin care MLM. I assume that means you have real scientists who have worked hard to create a credible product. Why not allow them to come here and tell us about the science, and let us ask questions. That’s what we asked of Nerium, and Avon, and both refused. If you do we promise to treat them and you with utmost respect, as science colleagues, and to give them every benefit of the doubt. Even if we don’t fully agree, which is fine, because real science has room for debate & different opinions of the same facts.

      Just doing this would earn you justifiable respect, because it is very “non-MLM” like behavior. Score major points right there just for showing up. And if your science has substance, you will score more points. The added potential benefit is that your science could be exposed to 50,000 visitors a month here. Free advertising, if you will, of the best kind.

      Our minds are open to the pleasant thought of a good MLM’pire.

  182. Mike says:

    All-personally, I found this site because I was a little annoyed at the blatant bs continually posted by a Facebook “friend”. I really found it troubling when she says “I think kids should go to school BUT you should look into this”. Ugh. So now why I am highly qualified to speak to this: I am a highly successful Information Marketer. I make a very good seven-figure yearly net living doing this stuff-not MLM-but Information Marketing. The principles of Information Marketing are extremely recognizable in advertisements when you are, as I am, in fact, a skilled marketer yourself. Sort of like the the photographer being able to easily spot a re-touched photo. Now, to be able to present my views in an authentic light, I will disclaim that I have no first hand use of the product. Could it be legitimate? I don’t know. I am not a scientist, nor have I seen any true scientific third party data to support the claims, good or bad. I did look. I cannot find any. Not that I would understand them anyway but it would be relevant to just know they exist. The challenge I have is that Inclearly see the elements. Without a marketing lesson here, let me just point out the “Social Proof” aspect. It is widely used as the most powerful conversion tool in a sales piece. Nerium relies heavily on these. Want to see the greatest marketers of all time? Stay up late and watch info-mercials. Nothing but social proof. The Nerium use to me is a bit comical in that even not having a trained eye, I can see the plain misrepresentation. My wife and I were on the couch the other night looking at the positions of moles on people’s abdomens in the before and after pics. In the after pics they move. See what happens when you slouch over and then see how they move up when you stand straight. In any case, not interested in arguing pic validity with anyone here. Just stating my own observations. Secondly, very strong use of the principle of “Authority”. Quick Cliff Notes here-“Dr.”, “Clinical double blind trials”, “CEO”, “MD Anderson affiliation”….you get it. But the most powerful thing that you will never notice is the Language Pattern. You see the best of us use NLP and Hypnosis in our advertising. We control your behavior and you unconsciously comply. Here’s the Language Pattern that Nerium is using so adeptly-“Share”. And share you will. Here’s a quick education on a Language Pattern used by a highly successful international training company. When you get the “aha” you will understand the viral action Nerium so slyly creates with “Share”.

    • drjohn says:

      The power of language. “Share” connotes a social good, unlike “buy”, “sell”, etc. Karl Marx tried this one in the Communist Manifesto. But just like with communism, there is a real world vs. theory, and the “pyramid” eventually collapses under its own weight. Wealth is concentrated in a few, and the proletariat live bleak lives of servitude to a state that really couldn’t care less about their welfare. Just cogs in the machine.

      The more I think about it, the more comparatives there are between the Evil Empire and the Evil MLM’pire.

  183. Mike says:

    Now to further all of my comments above. I certainly do NOT have any credible position to call Nerium a bad product or to call it a good one. I have ZERO experience with it. I do wish to congratulate them on being stellar marketers. You should never believe anything that I say or that anyone else says. I for one have been called an idiot many times and I say a lot of stupid things. Heck,sometimes I even lie. Do your own research. Think for yourself based upon your own observations and form your own personal opinion.

    Also, I’m regards to saying things like “we control you”. A more appropriate term would have been to say “some marketers control you.” I certainly do not practice such things as I am not trained in NLP and I am certainly no master hypnotist who makes people have orgasms on stage (wish I could-sounds fun :-) but being a copywriter, I do see it used by others all the time me I am very conscious of it. I study marketing. It is what I do. I find it best to know everything there is to know about whatever it is that you are doing. I know how to recognize the use of this stuff. Doesn’t make a marketer or a company bad. Heck, if Nerium is truly good it makes them exactly the opposite. It makes them a pretty darn publicly beneficial company. Point being that whether it is Nerium or any other company, you should look past the marketing and do research based upon facts. Just because I can’t find them it doesn’t mean they are not there. I am not a trained researcher even qualified to look for them. Look for yourself. If evidence is found either supporting or disclaiming the benefits of Nerium then we will all know the answer.

    • drjohn says:

      You ignore the obvious, the elephant in the room. If there were “facts” to refute the rather devastating product realities, wouldn’t they have been found by now? When folks “look for themselves” they are barraged with propaganda, not truth. And then you say, it doesn’t make them bad. Is there no moral standard to be applied to marketing? Is it every man for himself? Create your own reality? Lies are as good as truth, as long as it sells?

      Sorry, we don’t buy that. There is a moral dimension to science, and there is a moral dimension to marketing. Truth matters.

  184. DAVE says:

    You talk of bold face truth, but really you’re just providing an opposing opinion. Your “truth” is no more absolute than that of those who market and believe in the product. Regardless of whether you believe absolutely in the product or not, it’s a business: do the people who work McDonalds or GE believe 100 percent in the product? Nerium is an effective product for some, maybe not for others; DNA dictates the extent of product effectiveness whether it’s an aspirin or chemo. This website is equally as biased against Nerium as those people who believe in it are convinced in its effectiveness. And the business model isn’t a scheme: it’s a network marketing business. Not sure if the authors of this site have done any real research, but peer-to-peer marketing is one of thee most effective ways to market a product given the fractured media environment. People who think that running your own business is “brainwashing” really don’t understand the work involved in running your own business. Network marketing is a great opportunity for those willing to put the effort in — much like any other job.

    • drjohn says:

      You conflate facts and objective realities with beliefs. This is a common trick in the MLM world in order to discredit validity of science or proven fact (like proven toxicity of Nerium oleander). One guys belief as as good as another, you imply. But science is not philosophy, and it is certainly not “all realities are equal” or other such mystical drivel. It strives to find an objective truth. It challenges, but also defends truth. I cannot change the laws of physics by believing in some alternate reality.

      You want to refute our scientific truth? how about you supply us with the answers to the questions we keep asking. How can a substance known to be massively oxidating and a cell killer be good for skin? When you have real answers to real fact-based questions, we will be ready to listen. Meanwhile your blather is just that. Go peddle your “Flat Earth Society” religion elsewhere. We don’t buy it.

  185. landon evans says:

    For years, Jeff Olson made fun of MLMs selling “potions” and such. Now he is pitching one himself and using the same pitch he used in previous MLMs he was involved in, including The Peoples Network, Prepaid Legal Services, and National Safety Associates.

    It is a losing proposition to get involved in this nonsense.

  186. Calijo says:

    My friend brought this stuff to my attention about a month ago and I told her it looked suspicious. Someone had indoctrinated her and she is now trying to sell it. She was upset when I told her that the research the company provides is all just marketing, not valid, peer-reviewed research. I warned her because she has financial difficulties and this business is going to end up costing her money. She posted on her Facebook that she is going to have to reevaluate her friendships because her friends are not supporting her new business. I feel really bad about the whole situation. If she does well selling the product, I would be happy for her, but just saying it isn’t likely. A sad aftermath of another MLM.

    • drgeorge says:

      Calijo, and this is how it often goes, sadly for sure. A struggling hopeful latches onto the notion of turning their life around selling a product, in this case one with a dubious (BFT’s opinion) scientific pedigree. The closest and easiest recruits are always family and friends. And your friend is now testing her relationships publicly by threatening on Facebook to “reevaluate” friendships that don’t fall in line. If that isn’t pathetic, nothing is. I feel sorry for your struggling friend and the many other Nerium brand partners who are enmeshed in similar emotional maelstroms..

  187. Chad Kneller says:

    Interesting pessimistic view on network marketing. The upside is huge in MLM. My wife and I have been in our company for 22 months and are currently #13 money earners. We have helped build 9 six figure earners who had never had that type of income in the past. Network marketing does not discriminate. When you have the same company, the same comp plan and the same products then it’s all up to you to make it or not. I would say that Nerium is a top 10 company in the industry. This industry did 117 billion in sales last year. That is a fact. Network Marketing is the best way to become a millionaire with the lowest risk. So I would have to disagree with you about the lies. Truth be told, most people want success but aren’t interested in doing the work to become successful. That’s why most people do just enough work to not get fired and most employers pay just enough so the employee won’t leave. If you are tired of mediocrity grab some Jim Rohn materials and get self educated. Formal education can make you a living but self education can make you a fortune.

    • drjohn says:

      I can’t help concluding that this is a textbook example of arguing from situational ethics. Here is the gist: whatever the company does is fine – simply because it makes some people (very few, including the commenter) wealthy. Now in order to make a small number of people rich, it must extract $500-10,000+ plus from a lot of people who are sold on the dream, but fail to execute, for whatever reason. Their hurt is not even considered, because a few get rich, so its OK. By the way, we are aware of one elderly widow who is losing her home over this — so I cannot be mollified with “acceptable collateral damage” arguments.

      Then there is the complete absence of discussion of the product (presumably because it doesn’t seem to matter — it doesn’t even enter into the commenter’s moral equation). Suppose the product is damaging to skin, as is logically implied by “massive oxidative damage” (per Dr. Newman). Suppose it does no damage but is a $10 product being sold for $110 by dint of the MLM scheme underlying it. Suppose it is all a “scam” as some of their own people people have called it. Is it still OK, because a few people get wealthy?

      I’m not going to answer the question, because regular readers already know where I stand on the moral issues. But I will ask others to comment. Is this an acceptable equation, and if yes, why? If not, then tell the world why it stinks.

      I will add this however. In a just world, Chad Kneller and his fellow top o’ the pyramid dwellers would be held responsible for that widow being duped and losing her home. You cart your cash away in a wheelbarrow, all the while spitting on those poor souls whose life savings filled it. If you had any shame ….

  188. Anonymous says:

    I’m not gonna say who he is, but one of my favorite soap actor recently got involved with this SCAM company.(Don’t judge me for wathcing soap, by the way lol) Reading this, now I’m really REALLY, GENUINELY worried about him. He’s literally throwing his acting career away, isn’t he? He’s working as a BP of Nerium along with his colleague and his girlfriend(how romantic is that?!) and also he’s touring(?) several states attending some conferences and holding his own so-called fan events where he talks about soap drama he’s in and above all, he’s promoting NeriumAD to his fans! I was so shocked. No need to mention that some of his fans actually started to working as BPs. Actually his fans seem very okay with him involving with this terrible MLM company. They say it’s his life to live, he’s making extra money yadi yadi yada. But seriously it’s a MLM company!! A SCAM!! Shouldn’t anyone who loves somebody who is becoming a distributor of a MLM company be worried and upset about this? I really want to send him this blog to read about all these lies and BS Nerium is throwing in his face but I’m also worried that I might make him upset or be overstepping in his personal life because he seems to think he’s actually helping others. He already got his parents involved. Should I send this blog to his twitter or what? I’m so confused.
    Anyway personally for a couple of times I had thought about working for MLM companies without knowing they’re MLM companies. As soon as I realized it I quickly turned them down and learned a valuable lesson: YOU CAN NEVER EARN HUGE AMOUNT OF MONEY IN THE BLINK OF AN EYE UNLESS YOU WIN LOTTERY!

  189. Gail escobar says:

    I became a Nerium brand partner last November. I couldn’t sell a bottle of this stuff, much less convince others to become brand partners. It is extremely cultish. I am cancelling my brand partnership. It feels like a dark cloud hanging over my head.

  190. Lisa says:

    I don’t know if you guys are just all haters or blind, but the truth about every product is that it will work for most and a small percentage won’t see as great results. I personally am not signed up with Nerium as a partner or seller, but I did try it for free for 30 days and my results even after 7 days were great to say the least, and then after using it for 30 days they were amazing! They give you a 30 day money back guaruntee if you don’t like it. You have nothing to lose. THis product delivers results—real results…they aren’t photo shopped or fake, so you have to ask yourself why you guys all hate it so much. And I researched Nerium partnerships, went to some meetings- which were of course -very fun and full of real women’s testimonies right in front of your eyes, I also watched friends of mine join and the first month they were making checks of $1500 month, and by the 3rd month, they were driving the brand new Lexus that is given to Nerium reps. It’s definitely not a scam, and its not a pyramid. There’s a big difference in a pyrmaid and and MLM…some of you have your facts wrong. And to the people who keep saying that the Oleander is a posionus plant—there is more than one type of Oleander and Nerium uses the completely safe- non-toxic plant. Geesh people—I feel sorry for you.

    • drjohn says:

      The usual Nerium party line, taught at all those upper level meetings. Very formulaic.
      Here is the cheat sheet…

      1. Critics are not critics, they are “haters”.
      2. All you people seeing no results are a minority
      3. Pretend you are not financially invested in Nerium (“I am not a …”) and skirt the question “then why do you go to all the meetings?”
      4. Results are always “amazing”, and “real” even when they are not.
      5. Money back guarantees (don’t talk about the many hoops to jump through, the “restocking fees”, the shunning from your former friends).
      6. A brand new Lexus by month 3 and use the word “given” (but don’t mention that if you fail to perform by next month, the lease payments are now on your head forevermore)
      7. We are not a scam or a pyramid (like all corporations and the government are)
      8. There is more than one kind of Oleander and one is non-toxic (this is a barefaced lie, so don’t let them look on the internet or in a medical textbook, and especially don’t let them read all that clear and irrefutable documentation at
      9. Offer condolences to those who don’t drink the kool-aid so they think they are missing something (like perhaps you on the pyramid just above them?)
      10. Lack situational awareness or common sense so that you even will spread the party line drivel in places like BFT where the truth always wins and you look even more foolish and unbelievable.

    • drgeorge says:

      Lisa, it is obvious that the propaganda machine at Nerium is first rate. You spout the party-line as well as anyone. Drjohn has already effectively refuted each of your points. BFT remains troubled by a couple other facets of the Nerium story. Perhaps you can shed light on the following:
      1. When BFT was first exposed to Nerium AD two years ago at a trade show in Las Vegas, the brand partners were eager to tell us how 30% of the profits from sales were donated to support cancer research at MD Anderson Cancer Center. You may not be aware that MD Anderson, very soon after our first posts on Nerium were published, issued on their own website that they had nothing to do with Nerium, the company or the product, and that MD Anderson did not receive funds. Nonetheless, at a recent American Academy of Anti-aging Medicine conference in Orlando, brand partners were still promoted the story that 30% of profit from sales is donated to cancer research. Could this actually mean that 30% of Nerium International, the marketing company that Jeff Olson heads, is owned by an upstream company, Nerium Skincare and that they get the money? And that all this hoopla about funding cancer research is just marketing fluff to make the story more compelling? Let us know if you find out because something is not right in the story being told by brand partners, even now.
      2. And what is your opinion as to why the amazing miracle product, Nerium AD, is not going north of the border to our Canadian friends? Do they not deserve the best? Is their skin and climate so different that Nerium AD won’t work up there? Our Canadian neighbors have to settle for Optimera, which doesn’t list the nerium oleander miracle ingredient anywhere. How are Jeff Olson and his marketing team spinning that to the American team?

  191. Michael says:


    I am here located in Canada and my parents are thinking about getting in on the band wagon and have proposed the idea of getting me into it.

    It looks promising with all the incentives and room for growth over here in Canada and with the strict laws on ingredients the toxic ingredients have been replaced and or removed.

    Was wondering what your thoughts are?.

    • drjohn says:

      So, Canada insisted that poisons cannot be sold and now you think that what is left is worth $110 per month? Because of incentives (to YOU) and growth (to your wallet) … what’s the point? It’s all about you? Why not sell something people really need at a fair price and that has value for them? Well, you asked our thoughts. This MLM thinking troubles me. Profit motive is one thing. Exploitative motive is another.

  192. Lee says:

    It’s been a while since I last checked in.
    I have been in touch with my RN friend who gave up her license to become a NERIUM “partner”.
    I can say that she is making enough money to live her life and travel some. I am happy for her but still do not trust the product (or its smell).
    I have found two other products that seem to work quite well and are not offensive to the nose.
    Both are less expensive and do as well or (in my opinion) better than Nerium
    Also my friend still looks no different than she did before starting nerium over a year ago
    She does have more free time and charges people lots of money.
    Maybe it’s worth being that kind of person.

  193. Lorie says:

    I was reading through the comments and saw the name Mark Smith and how he was at Prepaid Legal before Nerium. Very interesting because I listened in on the Nerium chat (where you are muted) and Mark Smith was talking about how he was in the service (forget what branch) and he said he was going to make it a career until he talked to Jeff Olson and decided to leave the service and start selling Nerium. He lied! He gives the impression that this was his first MLM experience! Of course he talked about how much money he is making and blah blah blah. Beware of the lies this company and their leaders. What a joke!

  194. amy says:

    It seems to me that your objective here Dr john is to dump on this new product. The man that came across this left MD Anderson to form a new company to form a skin product from his findings. So you can cut the [expletive deleted] about not being able to reach him there. You sound as if you want this product and its marketing techniques to fail. As in most products, it probably does have a way to go before being perfect. Is any company? I have tried the product, can see some results. Why are you so negative? Give it a try….is this how you make your living bashing new products. Also, as with any product it works for some and not for others, So? You are a piece of work.

    • drjohn says:

      Well, you can curse all you want, but we documented years ago our quest to contact Dr. Newman. We made overtures by internet broadcast and private channels etc. to invite him to answer our questions here. of course, he never did. Are we negative?
      How about we are discerning, wise, erudite. How about we care about all the little people that get hurt. No, we don’t make a living here – our efforts are all volunteer and nonprofit. Unlike yourself, it would seem. “Bashing” is the term Nerium apologists use about us behind closed doors. That and much worse, we are told. But the truth is, you and this company you defend cannot tolerate scientific scrutiny, honest debate, or anything involving critical thinking and expert opinion. You “blame the messenger” and call us all sorts of names and impugn our integrity. You try to discredit us. And yet, in the spirit of legitimate discourse and freedom of expression, we publish your comments. Have you ever noticed that Nerium immediately erases any negative comments submitted to their Facebook site? Dissent not allowed. And, why are they so afraid to just answer the simple questions about the product? The send out you drones in waves to claim it works, but they cannot/will not stand up to scientific scrutiny? Why is that? Doesn’t it make you wonder?

    • drgeorge says:

      Today I met a nurse who performs medical aesthetic treatments. During our conversation she asked if was aware of a product called Nerium AD and went on to describe her personal experience with it. As a favor to a friend who was “sharing” Nerium with everyone she knew, this nurse used the product for three days, long enough to see the fine lines in her face become less noticeable. Because of misgivings about the toxic nature of the nerium oleander extract used in Nerium AD, she stopped using it. Within three days her fine lines returned. Her opinion, and one which BFT has voiced multiple times in these pages, is the product may well be creating an inflammatory response. One component of inflammation is capillary leakage, which leads to fluid accumulation in the inflamed tissue. Ergo, reduced fine lines. Stopping the product resolves the inflammation, associated tissue swelling, and lines return. If this is the mechanism of action of this product, we again caution against its use since chronic inflammation is well known to be pro-aging to the skin. If it is not, where are the scientists of Nerium International who owe the public an explanation of what is actually happening. The silence from them has been deafening for two years. Meanwhile, hundreds of millions of dollars of product are being sold to a public that can not be assured of long-term safety. (And no, we don’t want to hear about how many hundreds of bottles of product a one-year old child can safely drink.)

  195. I used to be a brand partner in Nerium. I tried the product for two months using it every night religiously , even though the product smells bad. I felt like I couldn’t breathe .Bad for me and NO RESULTS

  196. NOT a brand partner says:

    I use Nerium and like how it makes my skin feel. I’m 56 and the difference is significant! BUT, I bought the brand partner kit, found out more about the business and decided to return the brand partner kit. I got about 1/2 of what I paid for it! They deducted everything they could possibly deduct: 10% restocking fee, since I had opened the paperwork to look at it they deducted $180 for that even though I returned it in pristine condition, they also deducted any commission I had received (but I didn’t receive any commission?), so I’m angry enough that I will probably stop using the product. Also, my eyes were allergic to it so I had to keep it away from my eyes. I do not recommend dealing with this company and I don’t believe the business works. Definitely pyramid!

    One of the things repugnant to me was that I kept seeing “the science behind Nerium” but when I checked into it, i never could find any specific studies or medical reports.

    • drjohn says:

      If you read through the series here you will find lots of science behind nerium including that of Dr. Newman (purported inventor) but what it shows is not comforting. Massively oxidizing substance, well known as poison. Your eyes are trying to tell you something. Apparently they make a lot of money on the “you opened it” charge. Clever, aren’t they? A business model that capitalizes on product returns. I guess the worse the product, the more returns, the more they make on the papers. Probably the same stuff just gets recycled over and over.

  197. Linda says:

    A hatchet job written by competitors in the skin care business. Most of this article is not even about the product of Nerium but is a cut and paste indictment of mlm in general.

    And you cannot have it both ways. You negate the opinions of any Nerium brand partners as being biased and deny your clear conflict of interest.

    • drjohn says:

      You characterize a thorough review of all available scientific data as a hatchet job. And your refutation of the evidence is what??? We don’t negate the opinions of anyone – we in fact publish them right here alongside our own (something that you will never see at Nerium sites, now will you?). We like a healthy debate. Further, all you have to do is click on that menu item “pair-o-docs” just above to see complete disclosures of all biases, potential conflicts of interest, even philosophy. All honestly laid out for everyone to read. So how can you say we “deny” our biases? Utter and complete poppycock. Taught to you no doubt by your handlers at Nervium, I suspect, because they have been saying it for years, despite numerous corrections, and the obvious distortion of facts that are fully in view for all to see. You want to be associated with that sort of ugliness, you go for it Linda. We are unmoved by your repeating this insidious pack of lies, and your total lack of discernment. We feel sorry for you, your mom, your sisters, and your friends as you become a snake oil selling zombie devouring anyone who comes into your sights, even your loved ones.

  198. scott says:

    “Research has shown that the MLM business model, as it is practiced by most companies, is a marketplace hoax. In those cases, the business is primarily a scheme to continuously enroll distributors and little product is ever retailed to consumers who are not also enrolled as distributors.”

  199. Darin says:

    Hysterical that you write an entire blog to defame a competitor… You have you own skin care line and don’t want competitors… LOL

    • drjohn says:

      That’s what you will hear at Nerium conferences & calls to impute to us some motive other than the fact that we are consumer advocates. Like most whacky ideas out of Neriumland, it defies reasonable logic. Think about it. If that were our goal, our day job company would still have 99,999 other competitors. What a waste of time and energy. No, we really are physicians trained to care about the public health and welfare. And we care about the truth. Somebody needs to.

    • drgeorge says:

      Darin, “an entire blog to defame a competitor?” Dig a little deeper and you’ll find this blog began publishing 6 months before the first Nerium installment was published, BFT didn’t know Nerium existed until a week or so before that. If you dig deeper, you will find our interest in Nerium arose because the science made no sense. Still doesn’t and Nerium International has done nothing to inform the public about why its product should be trusted as safe for long-term use. There is no question that the subject of Nerium has generated the most interest on our blog, but that is more a result of the pro and con viewpoints of our readers than editorial choice. If our intent was to defame a competitor, why would we spend time on only one, and continue to do so when it obviously hasn’t prevented many, many individuals from joining the Nerium juggernaut. Nerium – good science, we don’t think so; excellent marketing, absolutely. A nagging question that no one on the Nerium brand partner bandwagon seems to care about is why no Nerium oleander extract in the Canadian formulation. Care to opine on that?

  200. Anne P says:

    My boss’s boss, who is a longtime friend, had me for dinner the other night and, you guessed it, I was pitched. Much of the pitch was simply bizarre. She kept telling me how she had become “social” and “more engaged” than she used to be. Really? This woman would throw huge parties and invite everyone, cooking amazing food and bringing throngs of people to the parties. I always had a great time.

    She makes six figures as a VP of a large company. She hopes to retire soon and now plans her $10,000/month income from Nerium. She’s not dumb! Her sister got her onto this. That Kool-Aid must have had some Jack Daniel’s in it, because she really drank it down! It’s so sad.

    I sat squirming in my chair and looked at dozens of before-and-after pictures. Here’s the truth: you see what you want to see. I saw upturned chins that miraculously didn’t sag like downturned chins. Etc. She took my pic with my own cell phone in this dreadful overhead light. It would make an awesome “before.” I’m not going to be making an “after,” too bad.

    I’m terribly skeptical of anything you have to buy and sell in this sort of social pressure situation. And the invitation to join the weekly fun at her house, and to the big convention coming up. So I went home and tried, really tried, to find the “Science” on Nerium’s website. THAT didn’t work so I started reading original research and scooted around the internet, landing here. (I also recommend for anyone without a large university library to access. I used the search term “nerium oleander skin” and all sorts of scholarly, peer-reviewed works come up. Fiddle with the search terms if you don’t find what you’re looking for.

    I thought of telling her it gave me a rash. But I think I might try telling her the truth. I’m not going to try it. I read many scientific journal articles, along with some explanations here, make it clear that the mechanism of change in this “serum” is to provoke a stress response. And that ingredients in the formulation appear to contribute to cell death. Not on MY face! And I’ve had 2 cardiac workups in the last 2 years so there’s yet another reason not to go rubbing it on my skin.

    Reading the actual research (not the flim-flam on the website) makes one wonder why anyone would put this on their skin.

    But my friend! She’s my boss’s boss, as I mentioned. She is living in Kool-Aid land, and I have to refuse to follow her in. That will be okay unless, of course, the tactics get stronger!

    Keep up the good work!


    I have a Ph.D. and wouldn’t ever try something from a MLM scheme without researching the #$%#^& out of it. This research has kept me up late too nights. I knew I wouldn’t buy any, but of course walked away with a brochure, DVD, and sample bottle.

    • drjohn says:

      Anne, you are a brave soul as well as a wise consumer. You took your time, did the work, and got it right on the science (or lack of same). You saw through the flim flam, and didn’t take the hook (sadly, many don’t really care one whit about the science as long as they believe there is money to be made). But the most poignant aspect of your story is revealing the impact these MLM things have at a social level. Do you now have to worry about your friendships, and maybe even your job security, because you refuse drink that kook-aid?

  201. Barbara McGinity says:

    Great website and great information on his MLMs work. I do use Nerium, started it to help a friend, but I made it clear and I only buying and I will not get involved with am MLM. She leaves me alone, but I can see how it has consumed her life. We rarely socialize anymore.

  202. Scott says:

    Ha! Ha! Ha! You guys are the competition. New Port based anti aging company. I bet you won’t even post this. You didn’t post my last one. So you care about the public, and their well being. You
    two are humanitarians. Ha! Ha! Ha!

    • drjohn says:

      We don’t get the joke. Reminds us of the grossly inappropriate “laughter sickness” that is a hallmark of kuru, a chronic degenerative neurologic disorder caused by eating the brains of another human. We suspect that Scott has been trying to supplement his scant white matter by sucking through the skulls of departed ancestors with a straw. Just to show you how big hearted and humanitarian we can be, we are moved to start a new charitable foundation to cure a rare but devastating disease. Let’s call it the Nelson Michael Scott Foundation for the Eradication of Cannibalism. Send $$. Let’s rid the world of these prions!

  203. LEE says:

    I stand corrected
    Thank you

  204. LEE says:

    dr john
    my comment was to say that the two companies were not related
    do I understand that they are in fact related even though the drug company says it has nothing to do with the lotion. Are they one and the same?????
    That would mean that the MLM partners are being lied to or they are lying to their clients.

    Is the MD Anderson Cancer Center afilliated with NERIUM (the lotion)? Is it a connection that should caution people to get as far from the product as possible? Does it bring into question the use of the cancer drug? (which I am glad to say my sister is not using…even though she is not doing well)
    I do know that the drug is not performing as was hoped.

    Isn’t dialog wonderful


    • drjohn says:

      The companies seem to be “alter egos” of one another. Nerium Biotechnology “invented” Nerium AD, then they found Mr. Olson who signed on to do the whole MLM thing – as Nerium International – and Nerium Biotech gets 30% of the proceeds.

      MD Anderson has disclaimed any involvement in or endorsement of the nerium product. See their site for detail.

      We hope the best for your sister, Lee.

  205. Peggy Guice says:

    You all are funny to me. You spend so much time and energy blasting a company and product. And for what?

    You can Google any network/relationship marketing company, and find similar trash. You can also find people who are making money. The difference is in how and where you spend your time.

    I’m not defending Nerium, instead I am defending Relationship/Network Marketing as a business model. It has worked for me, but only because I treated it like a real business and put in the hours. Has it been easy? No, it hasn’t. Is it easy going to my “regular” job each day, getting up at 4:30 a.m.? No, but I do it anyway. The only difference is, every month my part-time networking paycheck grows. Not by much, but month by month it is getting there. I haven’t had a raise on my regular job in three years.

    Are you being paid to do your blog? No? I didn’t think so. Are you profiting in any way by spending all of your time being negative? Is it helping you to make your house note or rent payment every month?

    I rest my case….

    • drjohn says:

      Peggy, you are right that this this blog profits us nothing in your eyes, because it puts no money in our pocket. In fact we incur expenses, so it is a money loser. However, we profit in other ways. We profit by serving a higher good – that being the truth. We may save a few gullible folks from losing money they cannot afford to lose in a pyramid scheme, or we may dissuade some from applying inflammatory substances to their skin. Your attitude seems to be that it is all about money. You should read our post Nerium: Miracle or Machiavellist?. You will see how well you fit in to the Nerium marketing mind set. Who cares who you hurt along the way – as long as you make a profit. The other guys who lose so you can gain? That’s their problem, right?

  206. michaela says:

    Darci Circuit is now part of this horrible company. I had respect for her when she did my hair but no longer! She I’d fake fake fake and now getting all of her family and friends involved. She should be ashamed.

  207. LEE says:

    I actually did not mean the derivitive of the Oleander plant. I was talking about the chemo people and the lotion people.
    Aren’t the two locations unafiliated with each other??

    • drjohn says:

      Closely affiliated. The “chemo” people (Nerium Biotechnology) came up with the lotion as well as the non FDA-approved anti-cancer cell poison (both containing the Nerium oleander plant extract). The “lotion” people is Nerium Skincare, a division of Nerium Biotechnology. Nerium International licenses the lotion stuff from Nerium Skincare. They pay them a 30% “residual” whatever that means.

  208. Loren Thacker says:

    WARNING !!!
    When the distributor and associates tell you that you can return it for a refund, at anytime. It is a lie. You must return it within 30 days of receiving. It takes longer than that to show that it really doesn’t work. I am a Photographer and their Photo evidence has no value.

  209. drjohn says:

    More untruths from the Nerium camp. Seems my parents neglected to take out a trademark on the name John. I’ve never heard of Naimion before now. Active ingredient from some jellyfish that lives long? Oh, I think not. Sounds like more whacky science to me. Let’s acknowledge that this is the Nerium strategy. Try anything to discredit us, rather than address the serious issues we bring up about the science, the selling model, and the rank hypocrisy of the perpetrators of a massive scheme to pick the pockets of the naive and vulnerable, and those on the financial edge, with promises of Lexus riches, while chirping on about happiness. They will say anything to try to move the debate off the product and onto us or anyone else who speaks out. And what, folks , do we call that? Rhymes with weevil.

  210. Thom says:

    I have never tried multilevel marketing therefore I am no expert, but I have researched Nerium when it was presented by a friend of mine. In the past there have been very poor MLM marketing companies. Companies that took and never gave a return to all the people out there working for them. None of us can deny that!
    Nerium I have to say is different, I have not joined, I have tried the product and it does work but it’s such a subtle change that you need to take pictures before and after. I’ve literally seen changes within a seven day time period. Recently I seen the pics of a elderly woman about 80 years old. Her pictures were at three months six months and one year and you would not believe the change.
    I think the reason Nerium is growing at a rapid rate is because the company gives back at a very quick rate. People earn iPads often in their first month in the business. Many earn a Lexus within three months.
    I’m not trying to sell anybody on Nerium all I want to say is before you believe critics go out in research for yourself. Now I have to say multilevel marketing is not for everybody. I’m sure it takes a special type of person, one with a lot of perseverance and patience.
    Thank you for letting us share our opinions whether positive or negative. I feel mine is kind of in between.

  211. Maria says:

    I dont think the product is for everyone.. I am thinking the people that have a bad comment about mlm are amateurs and could never make anything work if they wanted. mlm is not for everyone but i think you should let people decide for themselves bc it has worked for many.. i know many people using the product and seeing great results.i also know people that dont like it.. not everything is for everyone. but it will be for someone out there.

  212. Betty says:

    I had never heard of this product until today. So glad I did research before trying. Also would like to know if you have any comments on young living essential oils. This also seems like a pyramid, but has a tremendous following. I know dozens of people who use these oils and most of them also sell and recruit new people as distrubitors. It also seems as if the top of the line are
    The ones making the money. Also much talk about religion.

  213. maruca says:

    I really LOVE Jeff Olson’s book “The Slight Edge” but on Goodreads someone had posted in a book review that Olson was now doing an MLM scheme and I couldn’t believe it. Such a shame! He should have stayed in his field! Bad Move. I’ve noticed that on the reviews are either the max stars or the minimum. The super reviews sound like they’re from people in the MLM scheme and in the 1 star reviews category you have a ton of people who couldn’t get the scheduled auto-delivery and charges on their credit cards cancelled, got bullied into buying the stuff by loved ones and had horrendous reactions at worst off this stuff…. UGGG

    • drgeorge says:

      I can’t think of anyone better suited to head a MLM than an erstwhile “motivational author/speaker”. From what BFT has learned about the Nerium meetings, from home recruiting (get your best friend or family member involved – one level below you) to the mega-events in huge venues, it’s all pep rally and little else. One comment was that during an hour-long meeting, 60-90 seconds was devoted to the amazing product that was discovered by accident, and the cancer fighting pedigree of the active ingredient. That’s enough to lower the suspicion index. Then the group-think consciousness can focus on more important things than science. Like new cars, new iPads, and riches that change lives forever. As we’ve said more than once on these pages, Mr. Jeff Olson is a master marketer. Too bad he doesn’t stop long enough to address legitimate scientific questions about the theoretical underpinnings of his product. BFT’s opinion is he never expected anyone to question the science. After all, MD Anderson, cancer research, exploding anti-aging skincare market, recession weary populace, home business income opportunity like no other. an accidental finding that encompasses all that and more – who in their right mind would ever expect someone to question that by changing the subject to “how does this stuff work?”

  214. J.D. says:

    Someone got paid really well to put this together. It’s pretty funny how convincing some of the arguments try to sound but the facts are out there. Nerium International so far has been very clear and transparent with its business and those saying Oleander is poison please get back to school to understand what Nerium Laboratories have accomplished. Obviously this is a failed campaign by a corporate entity that obviously sees competition. Most of you are obviously and clearly paid or are just plain trolls that are not even familiar with the product. Not all MLMs businesses are equal but clearly all get bashed by competitors or people that really suck at business and failed at it. Dr.John, you sir are a damn joke, probably not even a real Dr. In the internet you can find all kinds of information but the evidence is far more overwhelming on the positive for this company so I don’t understand your failed campaigns. None of the points stated hold any evidence but real proof is out there with results so which we can conclude as I said this is a bad and foul attack on a company that is actually changing peoples lives for the better like it or not. Internet TROLLS will never stop, sad reality.

    • drjohn says:

      Another Neriumite who has listened to his upstairs neighbors on the pyramid, drank the discernment-destroying kool-aid, lacks any training in science or even logic and yet arrogantly claims to know without a doubt what is scientifically true. Once again we are tasked with pointing out all the glaring errors and feeble arguments. Where shall we begin?

      In Internet slang, a troll is a person who sows discord on the Internet by starting arguments or upsetting people by posting inflammatory, extraneous, usually off-topic messages in an online community with the deliberate intent of provoking readers into an emotional response or of otherwise disrupting normal on-topic discussion. Well, this is our blog, and our message is decided by us. We write the posts. We don’t force anyone to read them. We express opinions, and publish ours along with dissenting ones. So, I ask you, who is the TROLL here at BFT? I think from the definition the answer is rather obvious.

      Nerium has been clear and transparent, you say. So then why, after years of repetition, has Nerium failed to answer this one simple question: “how is it that a substance that is massively oxidizing and kills cells and shuts off protein production be good for skin?” That fact alone is telling. Then there are the repeated attempts to silence all critics (e.g. ever see a dissenting comment survive more than 15 seconds on a Nerium-controlled site? We never have). Many other examples exist. Afraid of opposing opinions, silencing opposition, enemies list, Watergate-like tactics? Does that sound like a purveyor of real facts?

      “Please get back to school”… “probably not even a real Dr” … and what medical school did you graduate from? What are your special credentials? These are classical Nerium party line attacks. Attempt to discredit opposing viewpoints through ad hominems, lies, prevarications, and yes TROLLS (see definition above).

      “Someone got paid really well to put this together.” Just another lie. Many times have we said we have never received a penny of compensation for any of our contribution here. Neriumites like to accuse us of being mercenaries. This TROLL on the other hand gets paid to hawk his snake oil. Just another lame attempt to deflect for the real issues at hand. When you don’t have any legitimate points to make, you simply set up straw men. Classical.

      “Evidence”…. “real proof is out there” . We are still waiting to see one adequately controlled study, one peer-reviewed publication. So far zip, zero, nada.

      “Oleander is poison” we (and all medical textbooks) agree with you on that point.

      “this is a bad and foul attack on a company”. We think you may have confused your adjective positions. Shouldn’t it be “this is an attack on a bad and foul company”.

      “Internet TROLLS will never stop, sad reality”. We can agree on this one as well. We accept this as your statement of intent to persist in your TROLLING of sites like ours.

  215. Alex says:

    I been researching skin care products to help with my adult acne and been messaged about nerium and this blog has been an eye opener for me. I wanted to know what your take on Rodan + FI ends VA Proactive. If it is the same doctors why is one more expensive than the other? I want to make the right choice before I lay hundreds of dollars down.

    • drgeorge says:

      Alex, the short answer why Rodan and Fields products are so expensive is marketing costs money. But when well done and successful, the investment makes back much more than it costs. Rodan and Fields are HUGELY successful because more than 20 years ago they joined forces with the very successful branding and mass marketing firm of Guthy Renker, founded by two masters of the marketing trade. These two attractive female dermatologists have become very wealthy, as have the marketing people who saw the possible potential in mass marketing their rather mundane anti-acne products.

      There are three active ingredients most commonly used in anti-acne formulations: benzoyl peroxide, salicylic acid, and sulfer. The R&F products contain these actives. The FDA recognizes these actives (and recorsinol) as effective and safe in humans. But, so does every other manufacturer that produces products labeled for use in acne. In BFT’s opinion, Rodan and Fields have nothing particularly special, except a huge marketing budget and some very savvy marketing horsepower pushing their products. Our opinion is their products are ho-hum, but with really well produced infomercials, lots of paid celebrity spokespersons and nice packaging.

      Go to the drugstore, look for the ingredients listed above and try several until you find what works best for you. You won’t need to enter into a subscription program that sends you product month after month whether you need it or not, and you’ll save a LOT of money. Be aware that the higher the dose of actives, the more potential for skin drying, irritation and redness. Retinoids (vitamin A) can be of benefit in controlling acne. See your dermatologist or spend some time on Google for insight into what and how. If chronic and severe, of course you should consult a dermatologist.

      Hope that helps.

    • Cristy says:

      Alex, I assume you are inquiring about the difference between Proactiv® and Rodan+Fields® UNBLEMISH for Acne and Post-Acne Marks? (Two different companies in two different stages of growth owned and developed by Dr. Katie Rodan and Dr. Kathy Fields.) When it comes to acne or any skincare concern for that matter, different people do not always respond to treatments in the same way. While both systems are created by Dr. Rodan and Dr. Fields, the UNBLEMISH Regimen and Proactiv® are different formulations that work differently. The UNBLEMISH is part of their Rodan+Fields® “premier skincare line” and takes their Multi-Med Therapy™ to another level by incorporating three OTC drug monographs to target specific skin issues. Proactiv® is “mass marketed” by Guthy Renke (have you seen the vending machines, yet?) and Rodan+Fields® is “direct marketed” by “Independent Consultants.” I have friends who have used both lines successfully and I would encourage you to try either one. Both have a 60-day, money-back, empty-bottle guarantee so you have a very real opportunity to experience improvement. As for the price differential, I would say that Guthy Renke has identified a certain market that will spend such and such $, and R+F™, in addition to “ramping up” the formula, fits in the “premier skincare” market. I don’t know that I would attribute the increase in cost of R+F™ to marketing per se, since R+F employs the direct sales model. It’s Proactiv® that has the marketing relationship with the “two masters of the marketing trade.” (No disrespect intended, Dr. George.) I do know from experience, that when you find something that works, it’s worth the price. Good luck!

  216. Jack parter says:

    It works people. I am driving a free Lexus from a company bonus… is the author of this trash blog doing that? I am also in line to earn a $50,000 bonus… is the author of this blog $50k richer than he was last year? nope!

    • drjohn says:

      We won’t embarrass jack with an answer. jack clearly knows how to embarrass himself without any help.

    • notworthit says:

      A $50,000 bonus paid out over TWO years IF you stay qualified…geesh. The Lexus isn’t given to you either. You get stuck with the payment if you don’t stay qualified with enough sales. Just wait until the customers wise up and stop their automatic delivery and no new recruits sign on.

      • drgeorge says:

        Gosh, it sounds like Jack Partner left out some fairly significant facts. Perhaps that’s because his mental energy is so focused on dreams of riches and new cars. I wonder if he wonders about his long-term prospects with Nerium International, or is only striking while the opportunity is hot.

  217. rob says:

    Hilarious to read some of these comments. People like Emily, bitter because they didnt make $ for doing nothing. Listen, the product works (for some people) and business model absolutely works. People just think you sign up and you are going to be rich! Well, unless you win the lotto, everyone knows you have to work for it. Nothing comes easy. If you dont put time and effort into it, it wont work. So if your lazy, a pessimist or an all around drag to be around, dont sign up. Every bad review I read seems to come from the same type of people…People that expect everything handed to them. I am not even with Nerium..thought about it, but didnt have the time in my life needed to make the business grow, so I decided against it.
    Oh, Miss Author..Pyramid Scheme is your cry? Really? Did you know that Direct Sales Businesses (ie. Pyramid Scheme) has produced more millionaires in the world than any other profession in the world. That includes athletes, movie stars etc.. So, I ask people that frown upon Pyramid schemes why they hate them so much. Answer I get is because the guy at the top makes all this $ off everyone else. My response; oh you mean like a CEO of any company? Then they say, well I need people to sign up under me to make $. True, you not only need people to sign up under you, but you also have to help them earn $, inorder for you to make $. Doesnt seem to bad to me. My favorite is well I get paid a salary for my job. well, thats great and good for you. You keep making that salary with minimal chance of ever making significantly more than you do now…meanwhile your precious ceo that is “not” running a pyramid scheme fattens his pockets. Every workforce is a ‘pyramid scheme’ CEO-VICE CEO-3rd guy in line-4th guy in line…..salary guy….hourly guy…..get it?
    Look, Im not saying Nerium works or doesnt work, all I am saying is the sour taste that people have about direct sales (pyramid scheme) is unfounded. Usually from bitter people that invested a little money into one in the past and just expected money to fall out their butt w/o working it at all. Usually its people with financial issues that are against the Direct Sales businesses, and Usually (not all) people with financial issues are lazy and or pessimistic and drag down everyone around them. So people with $ issues keep hating on these types of businesses while the people improving their lives laugh all the way to the bank.
    You should be ashamed of yourself miss author, dragging all your followers down in the mud with you. All you followers, save your money and work hard. Dont hate on the successful people around you.
    You are Welcome.

    • drgeorge says:

      Rob, agree with the part about working hard. Nothing comes easy, but that is besides the point we are making about the company refusing to discuss the mechanism of action that explains the “accidental finding” upon which this pyramid is built. Don’t you agree people should know what is happening to their skin at a cellular level when we know the active is a proven killer of cells? The biochemical machinery of cells, in cancer and normal tissue, is not all that different except for cell turnover rates and ability to metastasize. The MLM aspect is telling since it means the product must be VERY inexpensive to produce. Paying all the levels of commission (ten, we have been told) requires huge margins. And there is no getting away from the fact that well over 90% of people who get involved in MLM sales end up net losers.

  218. Katie says:

    Just wondering why you only post comments that are in favour of your opinion? My comments which were in favor of Nerium International and its products haven’t been posted. Seems a little biased.

    • drjohn says:

      We publish all points of view – you can read lots of pro-Nerium stuff. We are not in charge of ratio of positive or negative. We screen out only the ones with blatant ad hominems, bad language, defamations, and the like.
      The only Katie who has posted under this thread was back in March. Here it is again.

      Submitted on 2014/03/05 at 7:46 pm

      This is the craziest stuff I have ever seen. I’m sorry, but bless their poor little hearts these people selling this stuff are completely delusional and I just feel so incredibly sorry for them! And you two are brave to lay all of this out there, not to mention incredibly patient. I cannot even get over how stupid these people selling this product sound. I’m not trying to be mean, it’s just completely baffling to me. So, I’d just like to say thank you for putting this out there. I have “friends” on Facebook pushing this crap and I have lost every single bit of respect I ever had for them, and honestly, have realized they are just a bit simple. Which is fine. I have no opinion on the product, I’m happy with what I use today, but “friends” who are WAY more interested in recruiting me into this absolutely ridiculous money drain aren’t friends. That said? If they all get a Lexus and and iPad, fantastic! Good for them. And if the product is a miracle product, well fantastic! But good Lord, it is a pyramid scheme. No need to be so defensive about that.

  219. Chip says:

    You say that success in Nerium is impossible. You are right. For you, that is.
    Ha ha ha.
    Your website is silly.

    • drjohn says:

      We never said success for Nerium was impossible. We believe the people at the top are raking in millions. We believe that the bottom is funneling in their $ and labors to assure that the top folks get their millions. We believe the lottery may be a better bet.

  220. Chip says:

    Hey Beetle Boo
    You wrote…
    “Nerium is a SCAM of all scams. Intimidating pushy people will rob you blind and the product is terrible. its like putting school glue on your face. They are going to go DOWN BIG TIME, just wait and see. They stole thousands from me, they absorb every moment of your day AND night with constant texts, emails and calls. All to keep you from thinking straight. They gotta keep brain washing you!”
    Nerium is going down? You mean, as in “go out of business”? Ha ha ha. They only $219 million in 2013 after being the first company in direct sales HISTORY to record more than $100 million in their first year. Looks like your prediction was a failure. Ha ha ha.
    The product is “TERRIBLE”? Perhaps if you learned how to read the directions that tell you to wet your face FIRST it might not be like “glue”. What a moron.
    “Stole” thousands from you… sheesh. Who STOLE thousands from you? Nerium? Perhaps you SPENT thousands of dollars and thought you could hit the big time without actually WORKING.
    What a pathetic twit.

    • drjohn says:

      Chip, it is good of you to so eloquently express the true personality of Nerium and its followers. First, in response to an intelligent comment about Nerium being a scam, you don’t refute it but instead go “ha ha ha” all the way to the bank. Like who cares if they are bilking the last dollars from widows pocketbooks … it’s fine because they get away with it. Oh, and then you defend the products apparent need to add water in order to become un-gooey by saying its in the directions. So, why wasn’t it formulated with more water to make it simpler? I can think of thousands of skin care products that can be used without reading the directions. If it really is glue-like as Beetle Boo suggests, I wouldn’t call that a positive. But you turn it around so that she is a moron. Then as Beetle Boo intimates losing thousands of dollars you turn it their fault, because they didn’t work hard enough. For the 99% who don’t make it rich in MLM’s, it’s always their fault, right? never the fault of those who are the seducers into such schemes.

  221. Nancy says:

    I must say that I am surprised by some of the content of this article. I agree that it is extremely difficult for someone to be successful in these types of companies. However, this product really does work. I’ve seen its results on the faces of people I know, including my own. I know people who have been very successful with Nerium as a business. As far as oleander being a toxin, what about botox (botulinum toxin)? Do you think something being toxic is going to stop people from using it? Most of what we consume in this world is toxic on some level. Botox is “ok” because you use such tiny amounts of the toxin. A toxin which can cause death by paralysis. So, no matter that oleander is toxic, toxicity didn’t stop Botox, why would it stop Nerium?

    • drjohn says:

      The difference is this, Nancy. Botox is regulated as a drug. Approved by the FDA after many studies that proved its efficacy, and defined the risks carefully so that they could be avoided with good clinical practice. That’s why it is as expensive as it is, and why you can only get it as prescribed by a licensed physician. There is trust there, built upon the whole enterprise of medicine, working to protect the public, and with doctors dedicated to putting your well being above all else including their own profits. Primum non nocere (above all, do no harm) as a first principle. The company that makes Botox goes to great lengths to assure proper training and certification for injectors. The whole system is geared toward giving you an aesthetic benefit, while minimizing any risks. Botox is used for many other indications beyond wrinkles (we should do a post on all of the great things that can come from botulinum toxin).

      For Nerium cultists to claim some scientific or moral equivalence to Botox is a total sham. Rather than being approved by the FDA, the principle ingredient (Nerium oleander extract) was rejected by the FDA as a drug for cancer treatment, because of concerns about risk as well as efficacy. Mind you, Nerium Biotech. continues to hawk the drug (yes, same ingredient as Nerium AD) in third world countries where there the protectorates are weaker than in the U.S.

      On the aesthetic front, the company pretends its product is a cosmetic rather than a drug, and thus does not apply for certification. There is a weakness in our regulatory system that allows that, even though the principle ingredient they boast about (Nerium oleander extract) is a drug and a poison in toxicology and pharmacology textbooks. And what sort of evidence does it present to match the thousands of published peer-reviewed scientific papers? Nerium has none. Zero. Zip. And they have steadfastly refused to even answer the simple scientific question presented here by physician-scientists: how can a substance proven to be massively oxidizing and to kill cells be good for skin? They won’t even tell us how much of the known poison is in their concoction. In fact they don’t answer any of our questions, and prefer instead to engage in slanderous defenses against the tellers of truth.

      So lets just acknowledge that the emperor is stark naked. He may be sending out his trained minions to make these wild comparisons with a highly document, carefully regulated drug based on a toxin – but that just shows the length he will go to to bend the truth well beyond the breaking point. Nerium is nothing like Botox. It is purveyed through multilevel marketing by people who spit on science and have nothing but contempt for those who speak of it.

      P.S. we removed the link to your Nerium selling business.

  222. Janae says:

    Ok…so here is some information that I can offer, and you may all take it with whatever outlook you wish. Instead of calling the people at MD Anderson, go to Nerium Biotechnology Inc. WE DID, AND IT IS SCARY … Oleandar is poisonous if consumed in large amounts. TRUE …WE AGREE So, to summarize, please do NOT INGEST a skin care product IF YOU DO, CHOOSE ONE THAT YOU MIGHT SURVIVE It is also my understanding that only certain parts of the plant are poisonous, and that these are not the parts harvested for the primary ingredient NAE-8 FALSE – BOGUS CLAIM – IT IS THE VERY SAME TOXIN EXTRACTED FOR BOTH CANCER AND SKIN CARE – WHY? NONE OF US CAN IMAGINE (but again…do your own research as you will WE DID, THANK YOU, YOU CAN READ IT HERE AT BFT Please do not degrade the people who choose to take a risk in their lives and follow a legitimate company to make their lives better. WE CAN ONLY HOPE TO SAVE A FEW WHO HAVE NOT INGESTED A FATAL DOSE OF THE MIND NUMBING KOOL AID

  223. Blinders Off says:

    I wish I would have seen this site before signing up to be a Brand Partner 8 months ago. I am quite a numbers person so when I asked about the compensation plan all I got was, “you get paid in many, many different ways. It’s like magic—the money just comes in weekly.” Well, obviously I didn’t believe that but after seeing all the amazing before and after photos I completely fell for the product. I mean, who wouldn’t want results like that? Now, 8 months later I can tell you that I don’t believe the photos are real at all. Most can be found on many other websites for other products—all with the exact same photos! I can tell you that a neighbor of mine who is touted as a TOP earner in Nerium does NOT drive a Lexus. Hmmmm……interesting. The only two people I have met who sell Nerium and drive a Lexus have spouses who are doctors. Coincidence? Also, I see so many Brand Partners on FB who post about spending every last dime they had to join and then don’t even have money for groceries or necessities for their children. Terrible. My blinders are off and I’m done. I mentioned to my upline that I am putting Nerium on the back burner while I focus on my career and only get ridiculed for being a quitter…..Oh, and I am SO curious about the polymers in the Firming Body Cream—-I thought Polymers were plastic binders? Please enlighten us. Thank you!

    • drjohn says:

      Polyisobutene is a synthetic oil often found in skin care products. Not a plastic per se; more closely related to high performance motor oil (polyisobutylene). Polymers are any large molecules with repeating units of the same building block. Biopolymers are natural things (like DNA) that your body makes, and man-made synthetic equivalents. Yeah, we once noticed some of our own before/after pictures posted to a Nerium web site. Lexus: they don’t buy you one, you lease one & they make the ~$350 a month payment ONLY as long as you are earning them more than x times that. You fail to perform, the payments are all yours. I’ve driven a Lexus. Boring. You aren’t missing anything. Welcome to the Nerium Recovery Center. You will find lots of company here. Good luck in your real career. let us know if we can help.

  224. Kami Brockway says:

    It is unfortunate that companies like this have ruined the mlm name. I love my company and the way we sell our products! It’s not always a scam, unless you have a horrible product. It makes it hard to talk to people about great product when they have been treated like these people. Worst story I’ve heard was people having to be “tricked” into going to sales meetings! Who does that? If I invite you to a meeting… You will know exactly why you’ve been invited! Sad for the rest of us who are truly helping others!

  225. elw says:

    I have recently experienced the pressure from a friend to try nerium. As a rule i am instantly turned off by any hard sell attempt and this is no exception. The one thing that triggers in my business mind is the relationship between nerium and Lexus. There has to be some sort of financial exchange there right? For nerium to use lexus exclusively and use their name constantly (advertising the lexus brand). Have you come across any information about a financial agreement between the two companies? Just curious.

  226. Jammie says:

    Clearly Nerium is not for everyone. I just became a brand partner and have not signed up one preffered customer. I spent 1,100 dollars plus the 150 for my first purchase. That being said me and my husband can see the age spots changing color. I have always spent money on my face. I’ve tried almost all the products out there. Many of my friends tell me “you already have good skin. You don’t need it.” The reason I have good skin is because I take care of it. This is the first time I’ve seen this big of a change.

  227. Mike says:

    I bet you feel Like a real dumbass, spending so much time trolling a {then brand new} company, and here we are 3 years later, and they have 100M in sales, and thousands of before and after pictures that are amazing. Seems sorts like you should have put your efforts into something greater, huh? Trolls gonna troll

    • drgeorge says: