when you click to start with the adjustment brush have you tried resetting the variables by double clicking the edit word at the top of the list?
It sounds like it is using another previously used tool from your description?
Once reset, use the brush as you need to consider clicking the see mask radar button under the work screen and to the left, switch it off when you have painted where you need to, adjust the clarity and saturation sliders until you get the effect you want on the skin.
See how that works For you. Best of luck!
I am having a hard time reproducing this effect as you describe it.
Might you be using the healing brush instead of the adjustment brush?
A screen capture of the brush panel would help, or at least telling us what the Exposure, Highlights and Shadows settings are, which should all be 0 when using the Skin preset for the brush.
heres a bit more for you. I click the Adjustment brush, i.e. the brush to the far right of the tools you have.
This opens up a series of choices one of which includes Soften Skin.
Select Soften Skin from the choice by clicking the little double arrow to the right of the word Effect
Your sliders will change to Clarity -100 and Sharpness 25. Everything else stays at zero.
see my image attached for what mine looks like, LightRoom 5.7.1 Hope it helps.
I'm having the same exact problem. Have searched online for an answer for hours to no avail. Did you eventually figure this out, how to fix this – make the skin soften work properly?
Finally figured it out! What a relief. I can use Lightroom again and finish this retouching job. It happens only when I had adjusted clarity of the entire image first. Then once adjusting the skin softening, clarity, it would happen. The use of double clarity is the problem. That's an easy fix. Just don't use clarity adjustment on the whole image, and then continue to use skin softening adjustment were desired. When doing the whole image, there are other ways to get a similar effect as clarity anyway. Cheers
This doesn't appear to work in my Lightroom anyway. It is very frustrating. Do you have any other solutions?