Napa Inspired: An Audacious Approach to Skincare
For any mission-driven endeavor, there must be a North Star. Certain guiding principles that prevent you from veering off course when the prevailing winds of trend attempt to lead you astray; a foundation that helps you resist the short-cuts of efficiency. For Vintner’s Daughter, many of these principles were found in the traditions of Napa Valley, a place that was once the audacious vision of a few, but became a region revered the world over. With a similar audacity, our founder translated the traditions of fine winemaking from her family’s vineyard to skincare, setting new standards for an entire industry with products that are category-defining in quality, craftsmanship and efficacy.
“There are so many beautiful aspects of Napa Valley,” says our founder, April Gargiulo, a third generation vintner herself, turning to skincare after years of helping to craft fine wines at her family’s vineyard. “I come from this world that is in service to the earth, and to representing the land through wine. At Gargiulo Vineyards, and at many of the vineyards in Napa Valley, it’s about being in service to the expression of this particular place, this grape, this vintage, and really doing everything you can to get out of the way so a true expression can come through,” says April. “In winemaking, there are all sorts of ways that you can intervene, but if you keep that idea of being in service to true expression as your North Star you are not going to. Instead you do everything you can to make sure that truth is bottled as a time capsule of sorts.”
At Gargiulo Vineyards, and at many of the vineyards in Napa Valley, it’s about being in service to the expression of this particular place, this grape, this vintage, and really doing everything you can to get out of the way so a true expression can come through.
When she started Vintner’s Daughter in 2012, April found a new guiding principle: How to best be in service to the skin. But even with this new passion, many of the traditions of Napa Valley remained. Most notably, the standards of exceptional quality and craftsmanship, which years spent struggling with her own skin had taught April were sorely missing. “I assumed if a product was expensive, which was how the world signaled to me what luxury was, it was made using quality and craftsmanship as the yardsticks, because that was the world I had come from. In Napa you don’t take shortcuts, you don’t cut corners,” she says. “When I realized that these products that were so expensive were being made so quickly and cheaply, it was incredibly disheartening.” Vintner's Daughter was founded with a singular goal in mind: to create category-defining skincare that delivers unmatched quality, multi-beneficial performance, and universal efficacy by supporting the complex, natural functioning of skin. “If you’re constantly keeping what is best for skin as your North Star you’re not going to take shortcuts or try and make something more cheaply. You’re not going to do something just because it’s trendy,” explains April. “If you keep creating healthier, stronger, more resilient and beautiful skin as your focus, those bright shiny objects that can take you off your path start to recede.”
Ingredient sourcing, for example, is region-specific and reflects the winemaking tradition of terroir. April searched the globe to find the most exquisite example of each carefully selected botanical, partnering with conscious growers and producers who value not only their particular crop, but the earth itself. There’s also a vintner’s reverence for beautiful ingredients and non-interventionist approach in how those ingredients are then formulated. April spent two years researching and working with natural beauty industry experts to develop our signature Phyto Radiance Infusion, a three-week process where whole plants are left to slowly infuse, creating the foundation of our formulas. This process allows us to fully extract the skin-beautifying nutrition from each botanical and ensures no part of the plant is ever wasted. “We use very traditional methods of formulation that almost no one does anymore because it’s so expensive and time consuming,” says April. “But we also combine it with the most tried-and-true technologies that allow us to serve the skin in a very effective way.” The resulting products, Active Treatment Essence and Active Botanical Serum, represent a successful merging of old-world tradition and the latest natural science. For instance, Active Treatment Essence includes a stabilized form of vitamin C, which allows the skin to fully benefit from the brightening and renewing effects of this famously unstable vitamin known for losing efficacy.
We use very traditional methods of formulation that no one does anymore because it’s so expensive and time consuming. But we also combine it with the most tried-and-true technologies that allow us to serve the skin in a very effective way.
Beyond the beautifully crafted products, the traditions of Napa can be felt throughout the day-to-day operations of the business. “I was raised, both in my family and the larger community, to believe that we all have ways to give back, whether that is time or money or education resources, whatever you have to offer there is an obligation to give back,” explains April. From day one Vintner’s Daughter has donated 2% of every bottle sold to charitable and nonprofit organizations helping women and children around the globe. “One of the beautiful traditions in Napa Valley that always really struck me is this idea of “a rising tide lifts all boats." The idea that there is room for everyone and what lifts individuals up lifts all of us. Especially now, that message feels even more important.”
Learn about Vintner's Daughter on the Our Story page.