What intrigued me about Skinetica was the fact that it was slightly different from other acne products - instead of using benzoyl peroxide or salicylic acid, its active ingredient is actually a quaternary ammonium compound (ammonium chloride in this case). The claim is that the quaternary ammonium compound interferes with the cell walls of the P. Acnes bacteria, thus killing it by disrupting its cell wall.
Knowing that, the next logical search was to - you guessed it, look at the scientific literature, and see what it said about the product!
When I did a cursory search of the literature, I found that quaternary ammonium was already pretty well-established as an antibacterial. There was a reseasrch paper reporting that quaternary ammonium compounds had an inhibitory effect on P. acnes bacteria comparable to some antibiotics, and another paper noting that a formulation containing quaternary ammonium chloride had bactericidal results on P. acnes. Both these papers are from the 1980s (the first was, in fact, from 1979). For some reason I don't seem to see many follow-up studies, so although the science looks a little old, it looks like there is some promise behind the claims of the product.
The product itself looks and feels like water - which I guess is no surprise given that the product is mostly ammonium chloride dissolved in water.
I know it looks like my palm is empty, but I swear the product is there. Serious! It just looks like water...
So, I proceeded to try it on my own skin. I found that it did help some, although it didn't cure my pimples totally (I'm starting to think that's near impossible, since I do have quite bad pimples that seem to be both affected by stress levels and hormones). I also used it both alone and in conjunction with my usual pimple cream, and it seemed to have some effect either way, although not a drastic one. I did see some improvement within a few days, which is in line with what the company claims. I also agreed with the company's claim that there is "absolutely no side effects (dryness, redness, chapping, etc.)", because in my experience, my skin remained the same.
All that said and done, would I recommend Skinetica? I think that while it may not exactly work as well as those heavy-duty products we all know (your usual benzoyl peroxide, salicylic acid etc.), I think it might provide an alternative for those with mild to moderate acne, and who want something that doesn't sensitize their skin. It might also be worth it for those who have tried the usual treatments and found that they haven't worked, and want to try something a little different. And, one full-sized bottle is a whopping 100ml, so you know that you're certainly getting a good amount of product for the price.
(Product was sent for review. Review is my complete and honest opinion. I am not affiliated with/compensated by the company.)