Vintner's Daughter

Daughter of winemakers, April Gargiulo appreciates that ‘full bodied’ can also apply to breakthrough skincare

Vintner's Daughter Skincare

@formulafig // Instagram

“We don’t make your next product - we make your last,” asserts April Gargiulo the Napa Valley bred founder of skincare business Vintner’s Daughter. For Gargiulo, the daughter of winemakers in California, quality has always trumped quantity in her range of essentialist products that have garnered a cult following amongst luminaries including Karen Elson and Alice Waters.

Her products consider the whole plant and what she calls ‘time-honoured formulation’ that harnesses the full-spectrum of water and oil-soluble ingredients. If a bottle of wine takes three years from grape seed to wine seal, then how long would it take to develop a product that would most comprehensively nourish the skin: our largest organ, she questioned? She developed a proprietary Phyto Radiance Infusion that transfers nutrients into its formulas over a 21-day fermentation window. But scaling from experiment to full scale lab production was another hurdle with few manufacturers willing to invest in the slow process. She eventually found her ‘labs’ and began production in 2013 launching with the Active Botanical Serum packaged in the brand’s signature dark violet glass bottles that act as a microbiome for the active ingredients. 

Following upon the one size fits all success of the serum, April turned back to the drawing board to develop a complementary ‘Step II’ Active Treatment Essence released in 2019 and the Active Renewal Cleanser this spring. The 8-in-1, single step Essence features brightening Vitamin C, plumping hyaluronic, exfoliating and prebiotics extracted from dandelion, apple pectin and marine microalgae mixed with 20+ superfoods. 

As all best things come in three, the foaming cleanser meanwhile is nutritionally rich in whole botanicals like echinacea, ‘butcher’s broom,’ and ‘good mood’ inducing griffonia (prominent in eastern medicine) and helps strip away environmental pollutants and makeup. This is one power packed trio.  

Vintner's Daughter - Active Renewal Cleanser, 115ml

@vintnersdaughter // Instagram

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What’s your skincare routine?

I begin with our single step, dual action Active Renewal Cleanser, followed by our Hydrating Essence and Serum Moisturiser morning and night. I top it off with Biologique Recherche’s P50 SPF lotion for the outdoors and experiment with plenty of homemade facemasks at night. 

Thoughts on the word ‘beauty’?

Beauty is not meant to be a struggle but a practice that instils confidence. I question why adverts provoke with lines like ‘struggling with pigmentation?’ This keeps us down! Beauty is about joy and gratitude. // Instagram

What advice would you pass on to a fellow entrepreneur?

Understand your North Star and follow it ruthlessly.

The experts / icons do you rely upon?

I most admire the anti-trendsetters, whether that be the late Vivienne Westwood, Rei Kawakubo or Rosemary Gladstar who was a traditional medicine guru and herbalist who became popular in the 1970s for her philosophy surrounding the earth’s rhythms. 

Your favourite bolthole in Napa and where are you travelling this summer?

The Valley Restaurant tucked inside the Auberge du Soleil. The fine-dining restaurant has been around since the early ‘80s and also offers the most amazing views over the inn’s 33-hectare estate of olives and oak trees. 

Our family is taking a European tour through mountain, city and sea via Zurich, Milan, and Lake Como.  

Vintner's Daughter - Active Botanical Serum, 30 ml

@vintnersdaughter // Instagram

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The Signature Set

@vintnersdaughter // Instagram

What’s in the carry on?

Grandma’s pearls that I had redesigned with a custom lightning bolt charm by Marla Aaron. Finds from from ReSee and Desert Vintage and I always pack my Hirotaka Earrings. His beautiful, elegant pieces are striking for their linear simplicity and ergonomic design. 

Preferred aperitif?

My friends and I recently concocted our own Vermouth, made of a herbal infusion, wine and hard alcohol. If you think about it, Vermouth is the original cocktail and I like a drink that speaks to the process. 

Your now playlist?

  • Eastside - Grace Grundy
  • Long Ride Home - Patty Griffin
  • Clap Your Hands - Sia 
    Exile - Taylor Swift 
  • Losing You - Solange
  • Fall in Love - Phantogram 
  • Right Here - SWV
  • The Rain - Missy Elliot
  • Sinnerman - Nina Simone
  • Desperate Youth - Santigold
  • Running Up That Hill - Kate Bush
  • Destroy Everything you Touch - Ladytron

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