Your Top Skincare Qs Answered

Last week I happened to have meetings with both of my natural skincare favorites–April Gargiulo, founder of Vintner’s Daughter, and Hillary Peterson, founder of True Botanicals, while in San Francisco.  Two incredible women at the forefront of natural skincare seeking answers and pulling ingredients from nature itself (love TB’s recent campaign).  I’ve used both brands on the regular for the past couple of years and the routine below continues to keep my skin it’s happiest!  I also just feel really good to have completely cleaned up my skincare regimen to 100% all-natural products over the past couple of years.  And it’s so true that clean skincare (toxin free) can give you the glowing results you want.

I always come loaded with skincare questions every time I get the chance to meet with either April or Hillary and thought it would be fun to ask them some of your recent questions as well.  April and I met for lunch at As Quoted (yummy, completely gluten-free spot btw)… I brought along Willow and we gushed over everything from the joys and struggles of motherhood to skincare and her amazing leopard boots.  I then met up with my sister at the park (she was watching Rex for me) to drop off Willow (so nice to have a aunt in town!) and drove downtown for tea with Hillary followed by the most relaxing facial I’ve had in a long time at True Botanicals.  If you get the chance to pop into their store it’s so beautiful.  I especially love their aromatherapy bar–which unfortunately you can’t order online–but if you happened to go in person, #2 and #10 are my faves.

After chatting with both April and Hillary I learned I hadn’t been layering some of my products to the best of their ability and since then, thanks to them, my skin has been looking better than it has in awhile.  I had also forgotten that Vintner’s Daughter Active Treatment Essence has two sizes of hyaluronic acid in it.  Wow!  (Side note: Here’s one thing I was doing wrong–I was also layering Dr. Barbara Sturm’s Hyrolanic Acid underneath Vintner’s Daughter ATE but now after chatting with April I realized I don’t need to use both.)  So first, here are the steps to my daily skincare routine that I swear by and how I mix both lines.  And then, breaking down the Qs you sent along on IG recently below.

AM Routine:

Wash face with True Botanicals Nourishing Cleanser

Vintner’s Daughter Active Treatment Essence (~ 1/3 dropper full on moist skin)

Vintner’s Daughter Botanical Serum (~ 5 drops–press on face and neck)

follow with SPF and makeup


PM Routine:

Remove makeup with True Botanicals Pre-Cleanse Face Oil

Wash face with True Botanicals Nourishing Cleanser

Vintner’s Daughter Active Treatment Essence (~ 1/3 dropper full on moist skin)

Vintner’s Daughter Botanical Serum (~ 5 drops–press on face and neck)

True Botanicals Clear Repair Serum (2-3 pumps) mixed with True Botanicals Antioxidant Booster (for brightening) or Vitamin C–I switch it up

~2 Nights a week I use the True Botanicals Resurfacing Mask (I notice a huge difference in exfoliation and overall smoothness / brightening when I remember to use this mask)


Re: Sunscreen:

Yes, sunscreen always!  Reapply whenever you’re going into the sun or depending on what you’re doing (ie: if you will be outside for an extended amount of time).  I wear sunscreen daily but if I know I’m going to be indoors then I skip the spf to let my skin breath as much as possible.  I like to have a few days a week where I won’t wear any makeup or products (maybe just a little face oil)… this keeps my skin at it’s happiest.  Also since sticking to the above skincare routine my skin is consistently breakout free and I don’t feel the need to wear makeup daily.

How do I layer?

Spf always comes as the last step of your routine.  Layer in this order: face oils then serums then your moisturizer if desired and spf on top.  (Or in Vintner’s Daughter regime–the thought is you only need those two products so it makes it super easy–VD Active Treatment Essence then VD Botanical Serum then spf.)

If you could only add one product to your routine in your 30s:

An Antioxidant Serum (VD Serum) then always sunscreen (which you should be using but if not, it’s a must daily).

How long should a bottle of VD last you?

8-10 weeks if you’re using morning and night.  You only need 5 drops.  Press into your face working your way down your neck and decollate.

Can you explain the VD Essence?

VC Active Treatment Essence has two sizes of hyaluronic acid to plump and hydrate on two different levels of skin.  Think of it as two layers of bubble wrap.  So it’s ultra-hydrating and also multi-corrective in that it is a micro-exfoliation, brightening and firming.  Everything you want.  Then pat your VD serum on top which is essentially super food for your skin.  Together they are the perfect combination working together to renew and repair–and no other products are needed.

I’m often asked the difference between other face oil brands including True Botanicals face oil but you really can’t compare Vintner’s Daughter Serum as it’s more than a face oil.  Think of it as the holy grail of face oils–ultra-rich as well as corrective.

Does it matter if you mix skincare lines?  I use True Botanicals but want to mix and match.

You can totally mix-and-match I’m just always careful to test one product at a time as I’m introducing something new into my regimen.

Which products are safe during pregnancy?

Both lines are safe to use during pregnancy (I did).  True Botanicals has a collection dedicated to pregnancy.

Is there a detox period with Vintners?  I broke out when I used the serum, not sure why?

There shouldn’t be!  It is an ultra-rich and hydrating super serum and I’ve heard from some girlfriend’s that it’s heavy for their skin–make sure you’re only using ~ 5 drops (that’s all you need!).

How to help oily T-Zone with sunspots for those in their late 30s?  /  How can I brighten post-summer sun spots?

Antioxidants!  They are proven to prevent and undo the overproduction of pigment in our skin.  Try the Vitamin C Booster from True Botanicals for dark spots left behind by the sun, but if your marks are from fading breakouts, try the Antioxidant Booster.

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