Hall of Fame: Vintner’s Daughter Active Botanical Serum

Embracing the cliche, I am going there: saving the best for last. Vintner’s Daughter Active Botanical Serum is the most exquisite product I’ve put on my face in 2016.

Earlier this year, as I splashed around the pool with a beauty writer friend of mine, we enthusiastically compared recent favorites in the skincare department. Perhaps triggered by the copious amounts of wine on which we were running, Emily gasped: “OMG have you tried Vintner’s Daughter? You have to try Vintner’s Daughter!! It’s AH-may-zing. Email April, she’s SO nice…” I learned not to argue with Emily long ago and sent a brief ‘hello’ email to April the following Monday morning.

It’s all your #TopShelfie really needs…

Only a few days later, we were on the phone. How refreshing to experience the enthusiastic April Gargiulo; her passion for perfection came through immediately as she described in great detail her dedication to precision and to the avoidance of any short cut. Having mastered the art of fine wine at her family’s Gargiulo Vineyards, the creative purist within her now lends its talents to the skincare formula famously labeled ‘the face oil to end all face oils’ by intothegloss. Allure, Vogue and even The Wall Street Journal have covered Vintner’s Daughter and her miraculous Active Botanical Serum, which is now legendary. And so well-deserved.

So, what is it exactly?

Composed of 22 botanicals, Vintner’s Daughter does not rely on ‘extracts.’ The company sources only the most nutrient dense plant species from around the globe. Vintner’s Daughter uses the enfleurage method to extract minerals (similar to maceration in the wine industry), fatty acids, protein and vitamins from the plants. The process is so time consuming and costly, April was turned away by many labs before launching her superstar formula.

The result is a medium weight oil with a bright golden hue and an intoxicating aroma. Completely non-toxic, this eco-luxe green gem turns the tables on the prestige segment of the beauty industry.

Details, please!

In short, here is the genetic makeup of Vintner’s Daughter Active Botanical Serum: Grape, Hazelnut, Bergamot Peel, Avocado, Marigold, Rose Absolute, Carrot Seed, Evening Primrose, Rosehip, Lemon Peel, Lavender Flower, Alfalfa, Nettle and Dandelion Leaves, Frankincense, Neroli, Rosemary, Sea Buckthorn, Turmeric, Cypress, Jasmine and Tamanu. The properties of each are best explained on the brand’s site HERE but expect a luxurious blend full of complexion perfecting and glow inducing perks. 100% natural, it is free of parabens, phthalates, synthetic fragrances, PEGs and SLSs.

Travels well – keeping my skin plump in hydrated in Toronto!

Pure + potent = active

Originally designed to help address her acne prone complexion with the first signs of aging and traces of hyperpigmentation, April Gargiulo created a powerful multi-tasker, which is a true desert island product. Bio matched to perfection, each botanical compound excels at the precise ratio to address and correct myriad frustrating and often depressing skin related concerns. Pore congestion, sun damage, uneven tone or texture, loss of firmness, elasticity and vitality – it combats them all. No joke.

Steaming my face in the bath with the oil on = perfection.

And for me?

Ok, real talk: thirty six, enlarged pores, easily congested, overall dullness from a questionable diet and social overindulgence. I’m happy with my skin’s texture but less so with its tone. Occasionally, I get a pesky breakout along the jawline owing to the kindness of my teenage years. In other words, it’s payback time. I could not believe how much brighter my skin looked after a single overnight application of Vintner’s Daughter Active Botanical Serum . Visibly radiant featuring significantly refined pores, the results were even better with time. Easily absorbed, I am able to enjoy it under my SPF during the day and as a mega moisture treatment before bed.


Yes, at $185 for a stunning glass 30ml dropper bottle, the Active Botanical Serum is a splurge. I also cannot recommend it highly enough, especially for those who stray from facial oils as a rule. Seriously phenomenal, the Vintner’s Daughter blows away the competition with its impeccable ingredient deck and unparalleled performance. It’s officially the most impressive formula in my stash.

Available at vintnersdaughter.com or cultbeauty.co.uk (£150)

*press sample



  1. Joyce
    December 29, 2016 / 10:39 pm

    Hi! How does this compare to African botanic’s fleurs d’afrique oil? Would love to hear your thoughts!

    • December 30, 2016 / 9:44 am

      OMG this is such Sophie’s Choice moment. AB fleurs d’afrique has more aggressive ingredients (which I LOVE) like Retinol for example. VD is a lush yet potent plant blend that does a phenomenal job on tone, texture, radiance but if you’re after tackling sun damage, go with AB. Keep in mind that AB is a night time treatment while VD can be used ay or night. Let me know which you pick. Both are truly special…

      • Joyce
        January 4, 2017 / 6:10 am

        Thanks for your input! I am using vintners daughter and it really helped my dry skin while pregnant. My skin got much better after I layer it together with omorovicza’s blue diamond cream! Personally, i think I would prefer something with more aggressive so I have just purchased the fleurs d’afrique oil – I can’t wait to try it since I have been off retinol during pregnancy!!

  2. February 7, 2017 / 11:49 pm

    I love your writing style, its beautiful! And thank you for your honest review. Its such a pricey product but totally seems worth the hype!

    • February 8, 2017 / 7:23 am

      Thanks so much! I think if your budget allows it and you’re a minimalist, this one is the way to go. It really works so well! x

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