There are many buzzwords in sustainability, including “organic” as it pertains to food products, cosmetics, textiles, and other products that include any sort of agricultural ingredient. Each country also has different standards for organic products so it is important to check what “organic” means according to the regulatory body in your country. In the United States, the United States Department of Agriculture regulates the term “organic” as it applies to agricultural products through its National Organic Program (NOP). Let’s break down what it means when a product is labeled as organic in the United States.
Generally, organic standards are designed to allow natural substances in organic farming while prohibiting synthetic substances.
There are four categories of USDA organic labels to be aware of:
*Ingredients on this list may be used only if they are not commercially available as organic. In other words, they are not permitted if there is an organic option available for that particular ingredient.
The other two categories do not qualify for the official organic seal due to less stringent standards of organic content.
As it applies to Cosmetics, Body Care, and Personal Care Products, the USDA states that products that fall into these categories must contain or are made up of agricultural ingredients, and can meet the USDA/NOP organic production, handling, processing and labeling standards (verifiable through certification by a USDA-accredited organic certifying agent), may be eligible to be certified under the NOP regulations.
One thing to note, however, is that products made with “organic” ingredients are not necessarily safer than those made with ingredients from nonorganic sources. The FDA states that this is because organic ingredients can still be toxic to humans (i.e., certain plant species).
Here are 7 brands that make USDA certified cosmetics. These products contain at least 95% organic ingredients. Make sure to check their product page and look for the official USDA organic seal and/or a clear communication that the ingredients are certified organic (see full ingredients list). Learn more about how these brands are sustainable on the ConsiderBeyond app.
2. Badger Balm
3. Dr. Bronner’s
4. Juice Beauty
5. Henne Organics
Shop: Luxury Lip Balm V2
Shop: Organic Vanilla Lip Balm
7. Au Naturale