8 Myths of Organic Debunked

USDA Organic Logo

There are more than 8 myths to be debunked about the term “organic” but let’s start with these.  Myths about organic skin care, organic produce and what defines an organic product are ongoing in social media conversations and pepper many a magazine.  Having been certified organic for over 10 years, I have heard a lot of the ongoing debate of organic vs “better than organic certified” etc. etc.

Myth #1 If it has “organic” on the label it is certified organic.

USDA Organic Logo Unfortunately, this is not the case. Unless it is has the USDA organic seal it is not organic.

Myth #2 All certifications are the same.

USDA Organic Certification is more stringent than ECOCERT. Example, Ecocert allows borax and other ingredients that USDA Organic Certification does not. And if you are Made in the U.S. it would appear you would want to be certified here unless you are unable to be certified in the U.S. and therefore opt for the lesser of the two: ECOCERT. “… approved ingredients list (including preservatives) authorized in small quantity.”

Myth #3 Anybody can be USDA Organic Certified.

If this were true then all U.S. based companies that are Ecocert or other certifications would be USDA certified. It is not an easy process. It is timely and costly for a small business like us. 

Myth #4 All certifying agents are the same.

Check the board of directors and/or the governing body. Are they comprised of the same companies that are being certified? This would clearly not be an objective certification. 

Myth #5 Once certified always certified.

We are audited every year. As the program changes so do the guidelines. This could result in spending money on new packaging to having a product no longer certified.

Myth #6 Skincare products need to have preservatives to be safe.

Preservatives are added to prevent the growth of bacteria, yeast and fungus when water is part of the ingredient list.  However, all of our products are water free. Therefore, we do not need preservatives.

Myth #7 Organic skincare is too expensive.

False! I keep going back to the ingredient list of any product.  This reminds me of what my mother always said, show me your friends and it shows volumes of who you are.  Organic certified products are like idyllic friends.  They are pure, consistent and steadfast. They impact our lives continually.  Due to their prolific nature, a little goes a long way and thus per use, the cost is more than palatable.

Organic Myth #8 Debunked If the label reads NATURAL it must be ORGANIC. 

Not True.  The process of becoming organic certified is an arduous process that takes many years and is greatly regulated.  Any farm that is certified organic has been scrutinized for a three year cycle ensuring it is chemical free and follows the stringent regulations of becoming recognized as certified. Unfortunately, the use of the word organic alone DOES NOT ensure that the product is certified organic.  When a product carries the USDA Certified logo that product.  A demanding process but well worth the assurance!  



Bathe Less?

Bathe Less

Bathe less .. yes in the winter. Winter skin care is challenging with the cold and dry air that increases moisture loss in the skin. Then top it off by walking into a heated room and you have a double whammy of the indoor heat parching the skin more. Numerous dermatological studies also indicate that skin diseases such as psoriasis, dermatitis and rosacea are exacerbated in winter months making winter skin care essential.

This does not mean to emulate Louis XVI and wear our flourish roll on perfume without cleansing. However, it is important not to use hot water. This actually leads to moisture loss as the barriers in the skin are broken down with the scorching hot water. Use a non-alcohol based cleanser such as our chamomile foaming cleanser or marigold foaming cleanser. Both are gentle on the skin without stripping away needed hydration. Also, avoid products with fragrances, stick with essential oils. This also applies to washing your hands. Alcohol soaps and sanitizers deplete the needed hydration in your hands. If you must use them make sure and replenish with hand cream and then gloves.


You want to get rid of dead
cells by lightly exfoliating. Nothing harsh should be used, a gently exfoliant
can do the trick. Try our grits honey scrub that can also be used as
a mask and hands and face. You can also use baking soda: mix a small amount in
water and gently massage into face and hands. And please please… do not use an
exfoliant that contains micro beads that are damaging our environment.


We, or at least I tend to
forget my hands. As I have written on several occasions, my grandmother would
slather her hands in cream and then wear white cotton gloves to bed. Her hands
were hard working throughout her live from cotton picking to sewing and they
were still smooth at 99 years old. I use our lavender hand cream at
night on my hands and our orange peppermint shea butter on
my feet.


This cannot be stressed
enough for both men and women. For your home a humidifier in the bedroom will
keep your skin and hair hydrated. Heating is hot air blasting the moisture from
our skin. Our rose geranium moisturizer is
known for helping with rosacea and dry skin. What every you choose for your
face, make sure it is based on dry oils that will not pollute and clog your

The best time to apply a
moisturizer or cream is after bathing. Pat dry instead of rubbing excessively
and leave your skin slightly damp and apply the body oil or body balm your choice. I keep skin savior in my bag.

And don’t forget to
replenish your body with water… I used to drink a lot of water when living
abroad. Now, I have gotten lazy about it and must increase my intake.

Enjoy your healthy winter!
And make sure you keep your winter skin care regime!

Witch Hazel



Witch Hazel

Witch hazel is finishing blooiming here in the mountains of North Georgia. A native plant it is a naturally powerful ingredient in HollyBeth Organics’ Marigold Toner and Pore Clarifying Mask.


Witch hazel is native to the US and used by Native Americans to treat colds, eye infections, kidney problems, skin conditions, stings and wounds. Today it is widely known as an astringent and effective acne treatment.

In the Wild

The plant is interesting for numerous reasons. As one of the few plants to go to full bloom in fall and winter, it is one of the only food sources for insect life (flies, midges, beetles) that tolerates the cold, thereby holding a monopoly over wintertime pollination—an interesting ecological niche! Witch hazel’s seeding mechanism is very unique. The previous year’s seed capsules mature at the same time as its current year’s flowers, and quite often one can hear an audible popping sound as the seeds are forcefully ejected up to 25 out from the tree like bullets.

Animal Favorite

Witch hazel is also a major part of animal life. It often grows in dense thickets, providing cover for birds and small mammals. The seeds provide food for insects, wild turkeys, bobwhite quail, as well as gray squirrels. Furthermore, ruffed grouse and white tailed deer feed upon the buds and flowers.

Skin Care Benefits

Witch hazel is amazingly beneficial to the skin. Its natural astringent properties make it a great tool against acne, regulating oil production and reducing inflammation. It also helps reduce puffiness and tighten skin, making it a great defense against under eye bags. Feeling oily or grimy? Witch hazel is a great skin refresher. It cleanses and purifies, calming the pores and soothing the skin while gently hydrating and restoring natural balance. Suffering from razor burns or sun burns? Try a little witch hazel to calm the area and soothe irritation. Want a product that conquers all of these concerns? Click here to discover HollyBeth Organics’ witch hazel based Marigold Toner.

Happy 4th of July!


Happy 4th of July

Happy 4th of July! Time to heat up the grill, break out the fireworks, and throw a giant birthday party for America. The 4th of July became a federal holiday in 1941, however the birthday celebrations date back to the Continental Congress adopting the Declaration of Independence from Great Britain on July 4th, 1776 (though the decision to declare independence was reached on July 2).


Before the Revolutionary War, annual celebrations were held in honor of the king’s birthday. Parades marched in the streets and speeches of gratitude were made. After the Declaration of Independence in 1776, colonists held mock funerals for the king. They set off cannons and also fired muskets. In 1777, the first anniversary celebration of the Declaration of Independence included a thirteen gun salute, red, white, and blue decorations, and fireworks. Much like our celebrations today!

Enjoy the Party

Of the ten federal US holidays, the 4th of July is one of my favorites due to the fun and food. The excitement of summer mixed with an excuse to eat hotdogs all day (did you know Americans eat over 150 million hotdogs on the 4th!?). Furthermore, a giant outdoor party of fireworks in the name of freedom. So put on your red, white, and blue, head to your favorite fireworks viewing spot. Also put on your Citrus Spray insect repellent (we want you to have a pest-free holiday), and enjoy the party.

– Source History.com