With his extensive experience in everything luxury, it’s no surprise that Alexander Werz, CEO of premium brand building agency Karla Otto, is perfectly placed to launch the next name in high end skincare. Known for advising an extensive client base across fashion and lifestyle, working with beauty clients including Guerlain, Augustinus Bader, L’Oreal Paris, Acqua di Parma, NARS, and Sephora has given Werz a firsthand insight into building a successful beauty brand. The newly-launched project, AWvi, is a science-led, made in Italy skincare range, combining Werz’s initials with the Roman numeral for six, a reference to the brand’s six pillars – sleep, nutrition, movement, nature, passions, and relationships.
A tightly curated range, AWvi launches with four core products, billed as ‘The Skin Method’. There’s The Gentle Cleanser, The Power Serum, and The Active Cream, each a self-explanatory building block to a solid skincare routine. Driving this under-patent trio is the preservation and nourishment of the skin’s microbiomes and their relation to slowing the aging process. The intriguing fourth and last product which furthers this anti-inflammatory system is The Skin Biotic, an ingestible supplement which combines three probiotic strains with bioavailable vitamins for holistic treatment of the microbiome. Boasting an executive team which includes powerhouse players formerly of LVMH, Space NK, Susanne Kaufman, and The Sunshine Company, AWvi has also invested in working with top names in wellness and sustainability spaces. Heading up image and communication strategy for AWvi, Werz speaks with Vogue Arabia about his interest in the microbiome, and why fewer products can mean better results for the skin.
Talk us through the inspiration for AWvi, what led to its launch?
My passion for promoting a healthy, responsible, and meaningful lifestyle, combined with my knowledge of consumer desires, is what led to the launch of AWvi. I envisioned a brand that provides evidence-based scientific solutions to enhance the daily lives of everyone.
What is the brand’s philosophy when it comes to holistic science?
At AWvi, we embrace a circular ‘inside out’ approach to healthier bodies and minds, through scientific solutions that work at the source to provide improvements that last. We recognize the complexity of the body’s mechanism and honour this by providing an inside-out, outside-in approach across multiple levels to overall health and vitality.
The vi in AWvi stands for the six key pillars of health and wellbeing: sleep, nutrition, movement, nature, passions and relationships. Our products combine scientific research with a holistic approach to help achieve this.
The Skin Method is only four products, what was the reasoning behind this decision?
Our vision with The Skin Method was to create an integrated solution tailored to address a multitude of specific skin concerns, whilst ensuring holistic health benefits for every skin type. We have achieved this through a comprehensive approach that works both from the inside-out and the outside-in, leveraging the synergistic actions of our products for exponential benefits. Each of the four products in the Skin Method plays a vital role in this system. They are not just individually potent, but also collectively transformative, offering a broad spectrum of benefits from nourishment and balance to protection and regeneration, and formulated for all genders, all ages, and all skin types.
Why was it important to include a supplement, The Skin Biotic, alongside the topical products?
It was crucial for us to leverage the body’s complex interactions through a comprehensive approach, addressing skin health from both the inside and the outside. This is why The Skin Biotic, a next-generation supplement with three proprietary probiotic strains, forms an essential part of our skincare range. Understanding the gut as the ‘second brain’, with its intricate neuron network impacting not just digestion but also skin health, we emphasise the importance of a balanced microbiome, which is crucial in combating skin ageing and promoting overall skin wellness. Our experts have identified specific probiotic strains that positively impact skin health via the gut microbiome, enhancing the effectiveness of our topical products by amplifying its benefits.
What ingredients or formula did you want to highlight from the topical products?
The Skin Method’s topical collection shares a potent complex of hero ingredients, including two next-generation actives—ectoin and hyaluronans 3D—along with active water and triglycerides derived from organic fruits. Our medical-grade ingredients interact synergistically with one another, eliminating the need for additional stabilisers. By leveraging their specific properties and effects, they work in harmony within each formula as well as across our entire product range, including our supplement.
There’s an impressive team behind AWvi – was it important to you to bring top level expertise in from the beginning? How have these authoritative voices in beauty been able to shape AWvi?
It was really important for me to find the best team to execute this vision. Each person has brought their expertise and unique voice in medicine, wellness, business and branding to shape different aspects of AWvi. We have been working together on AWvi for the past three years and it is really amazing to see it come alive.