Don't judge me—but I am not a fan of eco-friendly beauty.
There's no doubt natural ingredients are good for your skin, but, oftentimes, those products lack the consistency and compounds to create and maintain the wear or effect I want. Admittedly, chemicals are A-OK in my book. The stronger the formula, the better—and, frankly, it gives me a bizarre sense of assurance knowing that I paid for something that was formulated by scientists in some far-flung lab (to each their own, right?).
So, when my attention was turned to Vintner's Daughter Active Botanical Serum, I was apprehensive. It didn't mean much to me that models like Hilary Rhoda have used the gold elixir, it has rave reviews or that it's currently sold out on goop (the latter almost convinced me)…until, that is, I actually tried it.
Basically, Vintner's Daughter is magic in a bottle—like wine after a long, horrible day—and is priced as such ($185), but here's exactly why it's worth it.
Your Face Will Drink It Up: It's more like green juice for your face (containing 22 ingredients—all botanicals and essential oils you actually know and can pronounce), but is more comparable to wine in that your face will get addicted to it. In the beginning, the consistency of the face oil felt too thick for my oily skin. Instead of using the suggested five to six drops, three or four was more than enough. I wasn't a fan of the floral scent either (fragrances typically make me feel queasy). But, like any good beauty writer, I kept applying the serum every morning and every night to see the effects, if any.
Two weeks later, my skin was absorbing every single drop into what was now a more hydrated, even and clear surface. I could even use seven to eight drops in the morning and, by midday, my skin still felt moisturized, not messy. On top of that, I smelled like a meadow—and I loved it.
It May Solve Your Acne Problems: Real talk—I didn't get a single pimple for the entire two months I was using the product. It should be noted that I'm very prone to hormonal acne. Even if I could feel a blemish about to rear its ugly head, I would add a little bit more serum on it at night and by morning, my skin would be clear again.
Vintner's Daughter founder April Gargiulo (an actual vintner's daughter) had struggled with her skin all her life, but it wasn't until she was pregnant did she try to find non-toxic products that actually worked. When she couldn't find anything on the market, she used the same farming process her family uses for their winery to bottle the next big thing in skin care. Oh, did I mention she hasn't had a breakout since?
There's Only the Best Ingredients: For those who love natural products, take solace in knowing that all ingredients are sourced from conscious farms and producers. In fact, plants are harvested at just the right time when their properties can be the most effective. Every ingredient is chosen to emphasize others—to create a blend that will do some pretty heavy lifting: stimulate cellular turnover, maintain skin elasticity and deliver oxygen to cells and protect against free-radical damage. And, of course, there are no parabens, phthalates and synthetic fragrances.
Worth it or Hype: Let's just say I almost came to tears when I accidentally spilled a sizeable amount of serum on my bathroom counter. Now with an empty bottle remaining, I have two new zits named Doris and Elba above my mouth. And I'm currently deciding what luxury (Manicures? SoulCycle? Laundry?) I can forgo next month to purchase another bottle.