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How this Vintner’s Daughter created the perfect cure-all botanical serum.
Written By ALINA GONZALEZ
Photography By ANTHONY GOBLÉ
Makeup By RYLAN VALDEZ
Hair By JAMIE KELLER
In a new series, VIOLET GREY profiles female beauty entrepreneurs who are considered industry game changers for their individual approach to business. Each one entered the conversation in her own manner and maintained a steady, if not unparalleled, trajectory with her indomitable spirit. Here, we talk to the founder of cult skin care line Vintner’s Daughter.
Like most great inventions, the über-popular and very-much-in-demand Active Botanical Serum, from Vintner’s Daughter, was born out of necessity. The brand’s founder, April Gargiulo, was discouraged by the exceptional number of toxins, chemicals, and ineffective fillers in the bounty of skincare products that comprised her daily regimen. She abandoned them in favor of natural oils and beauty butters, but found those to be subpar when it came to addressing all-around skincare needs. “I couldn’t find a product that worked. I desperately needed it, so I had to create it, and it had to be the very best in the world,” she explains.
Her commitment to quality comes naturally, as Gargiulo is part of an exceptional winemaking family from Napa Valley, California. While she was growing up, dinner conversations usually centered around agriculture and uncompromising standards. “From the dirt, to the vines, to the cork and everything in between, the idea of seeking quality was my way of life. I did not realize that same philosophy was not used to develop many beauty products,” she says.
Gargiulo spent two years researching myriad formulations before creating perfection. Listening to her explain the process is enough to make believers out of botanical skeptics. “We use whole plants, which is unique in that we are not using powders, extracts, or anything isolated or freeze-dried. We take everything from the plant—the whole 360-degree spectrum—to feed your skin 22 of the most active and beautifying nutrients in the world.” The formulation targets underlying inflammation and imbalance to help acne, marks and scars, discoloration from the sun, elasticity, and firmness. The result is the clear, bright, and glowing skin we all want.
I couldn’t find a product that worked. I desperately needed it, so I had to create it, and it had to be the very best in the world.
It may sound too good to be true, but the product’s effectiveness is what catapulted the serum into cult status, earning it a permanent place in the medicine cabinet of Gwyneth Paltrow, among other celebrity fans. “People see dramatic results, their friends see results, and they ask, ‘What are you doing for your skin? How do I get there?’ Once people have it and try it, their skin looks so good that they’re spending less time and money on makeup to cover imperfections,” Gargiulo says.
Ultimately, delivering quality—and providing a powerful dose of confidence in the process—is what the mother of two sets out to do. Acknowledging the inherent intimacy of skin in its most naked state, and the insecurities that result when it’s not where you want it to be, Gargiulo calls her work immeasurably fulfilling. “We want to make a difference in our clients’ lives. When you are happy and have clear, bright, glowing skin, there is a beauty that shines through. Effective products that actually work on multiple levels? That’s what women deserve.”
What is the atmosphere of your bedroom?
Please describe your bed and your favorite thing about it.
I sleep on a fitted bedsheet that is electrically charged to promote wellness and balance. It is called grounding. I also love my silk Slip pillowcase.
What time do you wake up?
Between 6:30 and 7:30 a.m.
How many hours of sleep do you require?
Eight to nine.
Any bedside beauty essentials?
So many things! Pommade Divine, Sprayology SleepEase, Slim Cera face roller, NuFace red light—I only wish it didn’t beep.
Do you drink coffee or tea, eat breakfast?
I have gluten-free toast with coconut butter and jasmine green tea every day for breakfast. Midmorning I have a matcha latte concoction with all sorts of added goodness (adaptogens, oil, protein).
Do you work out in the a.m.?
Yes. I love to work out. Pilates ProWorks is a life changer.
What makeup and products do you use on a daily basis?
What’s your hair situation in the a.m.?
Crazy. I have thick, long hair so all I can do is try to contain it. Current solution is a half bun and lots of La Tierra Sagrada conditioner.
What’s the first thing you read each morning?
What business do you conduct before 10:00 a.m.?
I focus on international correspondence before 10.
What time do you head to your office?
It is different every day.