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Dr. Des Fernandes, the founder of Environ, believes that vitamin A is as essential for our skin as oxygen is for our breathing. As the star ingredient in Environ’s formulas, vitamin A increases cellular turnover, improves collagen and elastin, and normalizes oil production, helping maintain vibrant and youthful looking skin.

Environ’s industry leading Vitamin Step-Up System allows you to slowly introduce potent active ingredients, namely vitamin A, to your skin, minimizing irritation and revealing the best results. The brand’s best selling Skin EssentiA range of Vita-Antioxidant AVST moisturizers are the safest, most effective way to introduce medical-grade skincare to your routine.

But how do you know which level is right for you? Our team of estheticians have created a comprehensive Environ AVST review to help you confidently choose the right products for your skincare routine.

Exploring Environ AVST Products

Environ’s comprehensive Skin EssentiA collection falls under the brand’s “essential care” category. The range features the best-selling AVST moisturizers: Vita-Antioxidant AVST Gel and levels 1-5 of the AVST Moisturizer.

AVST is an abbreviation for Advanced Vitamin Skin Therapy. It is endorsed by the Swiss Vitamin Institute and contains a combination of active ingredients, such as vitamin A and vitamin C, that are essential to maintain healthy and youthful-looking skin.


The lightweight and cooling Vita-Antioxidant AVST Gel helps to calm sensitivity, hydrate with a water based formula, and assist in evening out skin tone and improving fine lines. 

AVST Gel is an excellent option for individuals on the younger side who do not need a high dosage of vitamin A yet. This gel contains a low amount of retinyl palmitate, which is an ester form of vitamin A. It's beneficial for those prone to breakouts or oily skin, with an added dose of antioxidants, vitamins C and A, in a soothing gel moisturizer. 

In addition, the gel can be used as an introductory retinol serum before using a thicker moisturizer during the winter months. During the warmer months, it can be used in the morning and night as a moisturizer.


The Vita-Antioxidant AVST creams serve as both moisturizers and sources of skin-healthy vitamins. The numbers assigned to each cream do not indicate their level of moisturizing properties, but rather the concentration of vitamins in each product. It is a step-up system starting with AVST 1, which has the lowest concentration of vitamin A in the form of retinyl palmitate, an ester form that is already found in the liver and recognized by the body. As the numbers increase, so does the concentration of vitamin A, as well as the concentration of vitamin C and peptides. 

The AVST creams are great moisturizers and the vitamins in them have their own benefits. Vitamin C protects the skin from free radicals whereas vitamin A improves the overall appearance of the skin. 

To use, apply the cream after cleansing, toning and serum application, in the morning and at night. Start with AVST 1 and gradually work up to the highest number, which is 5.    

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Which AVST Moisturizer level is right for me?

Environ’s Skin EssentiA AVST moisturizers provide a good source of antioxidants and vitamins for healthy, radiant skin without a major focus on anti-aging. 

If you are new to Vitamin A products and have sensitive skin that is not prone to acne, AVST Moisturizer 1 would be the best option to start with. If you have oily or acne-prone skin, AVST Gel can be used as a serum or moisturizer. It may be tempting to jump to a higher level thinking it will show better results, but we strongly advise against it. Environ's Step-Up System is backed by scientific research and should be followed to ensure that the skin adapts to the product gradually. The only time we suggest skipping AVST Moisturizer 1 and moving to AVST Moisturizer 2 is if you have prior experience with vitamin A and do not have sensitive skin.

Environ recommends using at least two bottles before moving up to the next level. However, it is important to monitor how your skin feels and to advance to the next level only when your skin is ready.

Are there any side effects?

Following the Step-Up System is critical to avoiding side effects. Vitamin A increases cellular turnover, which may cause dryness when first introduced. So, as we mentioned, starting with the AVST Gel or AVST Moisturizers in levels 1 or 2 should limit adverse reactions. However, you can easily remedy dryness from vitamin A with a soothing hyaluronic acid serum or an additional layer of balm or cream

Persistent flaky skin, redness, or rash could indicate irritation. If this happens, you may need to reduce the frequency of application to every other day or every third day until your skin becomes comfortable. It may also be necessary to drop down a level in the Step-Up System.

Other Alternatives to Environ AVST Products

If someone is concerned with aging, they can turn to the Youth EssentiA line, specifically C-Quence, which is another step-up system with a higher concentration of essential vitamins A, C, E, and peptides.

There are a variety of Environ products that we recommend to our clients based on their skin conditions and goals. Beyond anti-aging, there are also collections focusing on acne (Clarity+) and sensitive skin (Comfort+).

Final Verdict: Is Environ AVST Worth the Money?

If you're searching for a way to incorporate vitamin A and antioxidants into your skin care routine without breaking the bank, Environ's AVST moisturizers are a great option. They are particularly beneficial for those who are younger and prioritize skin health and longevity over correction. In terms of value for money, the range is definitely worth considering.