I knew I had to reach out to the wellness conscious founder of the cult “holy grail” serum, Vintner’s Daughter, April Gargiulo. As someone who is obsessed with oils and a simple skincare routine myself, I’ve now learned vintners is really the only product you need to use. I had been dying to try Vintner’s Daughter Active Botanical Serum after hearing such amazing things from friends and, sure enough, I too am now obsessed and singing all of the VD praises. It’s all I’ve been using this summer and my skin has never been this happy and dewy during the dry summer months.
I jumped at the chance to chat with April and was so pleased to discover how refreshingly real, fun, warm, and down-to-earth she is. I loved learning more about her story and picking her brain on all things skincare and wellness because it’s my favorite topic these days. I had so many “me too’s” to her answers below and I hope you enjoy this interview as much as I enjoyed our conversation. I can’t wait to get to her family vineyard and hopefully grab a glass of wine with her in Napa soon!
Originally from Napa, April moved to New York to establish herself in the field of architectural design. It wasn’t until after her family opened a winery, Gargiulo Vineyards, in her home town, that she decided to move back to Napa to try her hand in the wine industry.
After traveling all over to tell the story of her family’s vineyard, April decided to make a personal pivot around the time she had her daughter. She began to look at the ingredients in everything (I think so many of us can relate) realizing there was a need in the market for a clean high-quality product to solve her skincare needs.
For busy women like herself, when it came to skincare she wanted one product. Coming from the wine industry, she appreciated the quality and wanted every single ingredient to be active and to be sourced from the finest growers. And thus April, went about launching her own, carefully sourced, toxic-free serum!
1. I think we’re all looking for that magical wonder product and VD has truly been amazing for my skin this summer! But in your opinion, why is the Active Botanical Serum the only (desert island) skincare product we need?
Active Botanical Serum is a critical part of your most healthy and radiant skin because it is so multi-correctional. Uniquely, our formula contains only active ingredients — 22 of them to be exact — and is able to replace several steps in a standard skincare routine. It really is a one-stop-shop product for clear, radiant, healthy skin, which is why it has earned “holy grail” status. Those are Into the Gloss’ words, not mine.
2. Were you already using and loved oils/serums before and decided to create your own or how did Vintner’s Daughter come about?
I created Active Botanical Serum because I was tired of compromising on quality, safety, and efficacy in my “luxury” skincare products. I didn’t have a background in beauty; I came from the world of fine winemaking and it is that same dedication and commitment to quality that guided the sourcing and formulation of Active Botanical Serum. You cannot take shortcuts when you are making the finest wine or the finest of anything for that matter. We are unwavering in our attention to performance and quality.
3. Can you tell us about your skincare routine?
I have a very minimal approach to my own routine. I use a gentle cleanser, an essence and follow it up with Active Botanical Serum. My final step in the mornings is a Suntegrity SPF. I do love skincare devices, though:
1. Facial Cupping: I swear by these and use them every night. They work wonderfully with Active Botanical Serum to really amplify its microcirculatory effects. It is very lifting too, which doesn’t hurt.
2. MyNuFace: I love microcurrent treatments, and the fact that I can do this one at home is a beautiful thing. It helps to firm, lift, and tighten my skin.
3. Red Light–Baby Quasar: This is something else I use every night in my routine. Red light therapy stimulates collagen and helps skin heal and renew.
4. I know you’re into cupping–can you tell us what this entails… and, should we be doing this on the regular?!
Yes!!! See above.
5. I am always curious about others’ wellness practices–can you tell us about any daily rituals or regular practices that have made a difference for you?
My biggest daily wellness and also beauty practice is my gratitude practice. It is something I have actively practiced for over ten years and comes out of a study of Buddhism. You can literally do it anywhere. My family is on it too. Each night at the dinner table we go around and say what we are grateful for in our day. I also do it when least expected. For instance, anytime I am really tired, instead of saying I’m so exhausted, I say “I’m so grateful for having all that life is giving me.” It’s a subtle shift that can make a profound difference.
6. We all know diet plays a huge roll in beauty and I am always curious what the most knowledgeable people in the industry are eating. Do you stick to any particular diets?
I primarily stick to a plant-based diet, minimally processed food, limited dairy, caffeine and alcohol, but that all gets thrown out the window on occasion.
7. What’s your favorite way to treat yourself or unwind after a busy day?
I love design and architecture, so anytime I can read books or zoom around online looking at furniture and buildings, I am happy. I also love retreating to west Marin for a hike. It’s my idea of zen.
8. Do you have any daily mantras or words of wisdom you live by?
Aging is a privilege.
9. Beauty and style go hand-in-hand, how would you describe your style? And what are your favorite clothing brands?
My style differs from one day to the next, but it’s always comfortable. I don’t suffer much for fashion. My favorite brands are Celine, Rachel Comey, Zara, Apiece Apart, Roksanda, Dries Van Noten, Attico. I also go crazy for vintage jewelry and Metier is my place.
10. What are your favorite Napa Valley spots?
Of course, Gargiulo Vineyards, which is my family’s winery. We produce single-vineyard, estate wines from two very special Oakville, Napa Valley vineyards. I love Southside for lunch and Ciccio for dinner. Auberge du Soleil (for the spa and pool–and they carry Vintner’s Daughter in their spa!). Miminashi (for their soft serve). Walking or riding along the VineTrail (the Napa Valley answer to NYC’s Highline) through Napa.