Justin Reeder celebrates 25 years at Edmonds Vitamins and Herbs

Justin Reeder (Photo courtesy Carolyn Hart-Mylie)
Justin Reeder likes to help people. It got her into the health food industry 40 years ago in Seattle, and 25 years ago she opened her own store in downtown Edmonds.
“My native philosophy is that we are all here to love and support one another. So that’s what I do,” she said.
When she first opened Edmonds Vitamins & Herbs at 420 5th Ave. S., “It was so small, just 200 square feet. I could only get two customers in at a time before you got claustrophobic!”
“It’s not a money-making business,” she added. “It’s a people business. So, I sold my car, took extra jobs to make money,” and she kept working.
Year after year, Reeder helps the folks who walk through her door. Many just don’t know what to do about their problems, but want to try a natural approach.
“There are so many reasons people’s health gets out of balance,” she said. “They don’t know how to straighten out their diets and their lives. Often they don’t need to take so much stuff. I’ve talked people out of taking things as much as I’ve sold them!”
Reeder said her job requires a lot of listening. “People’s problems are never caused by just one thing,” she said.  “A woman came in one day with headaches. She could have taken a drug, but the more we talked, the more we learned. Her husband’s snoring kept her up at night  and her cat’s dander bothered her. Eventually, I realized she needed earplugs and allergy support.”
Five years ago, on Reeder’s 20th anniversary, she said that her customers have become her friends. Now, it’s even more emotional. “The pandemic was hard on my elderly customers. It’s so sad. At one point, Paktia Pharmacy, Arista Wine Cellars and my shop were the only businesses allowed to be open.”
Edmonds has definitely changed, she said, “because it is younger.” She credits employee Carolyn Hart-Mylie for being able to relate to that demographic. “She was a teacher and a lactation consultant so she knows how to relate to Edmonds’ younger families,” Reeder said.
And employee Sidney Cohen, who started as a customer 23 years ago, “is a great help with the male clientele,” she added.
Younger customers tend to purchase online, she said, and so small businesses are constantly undercut by the internet and chain stores. While times have changed, Edmonds Vitamins & Herbs is still here and Reeder is ready to talk about good health to those who walk through the door.
“When I think about retiring, new customers come in the door or someone tells me how I’ve helped them. I still get to help people,” she said. “My customers are now multi-generational and I am so grateful for their continued trust and support.”
— By Mauri Shuler
  1. Justin!! Congratulations on your milestone 25 years in business! Your health & wellness experience and knowledge are a gift to our Edmonds community. You offer so many choices and options to positively impact lives! Thank you!

  2. Justin and each of her employees are so welcoming, friendly, helpful. Every time I go in there, I leave with a smile. It becomes obvious right away that they are helping their customers, not just selling, not just making money. They CARE and it shows.

  3. Completely agree with Sue’s comments. We are fairly frequent visitors because Justin and her crew are so knowledgeable and helpful – but, we also enjoy going there because Justin, Carolyn and Sidney are simply delightful people. I always walk in with a smile, and leave with a wider one. The three of them make Edmonds a better place. Hang in there, Justin…

  4. Justin has introduced good health habits to the city. She has become a member of our family, her smile, outlook on life, and brings a brilliiancy to our part of 5th Ave. Sid and I met her 23 years ago, and consider her a sister. Thanks for the article that honors her 25 years of business. Gratitude and appreciation.

  5. I love Edmonds Vitamins and Herbs! Congratulations! I trust their products to be of the best quality. They are so friendly and welcoming when I come in – Like a little burst of sunight!

  6. Congratulations Justin!!! You are the best and Carolyn is a great addition to your business. I am so thankful for you. You have always given me the BEST advice about many different issues. Thanks for everything that you do! You are amazing how you remember names!

  7. Congratulations Justin!
    You have helped me solve numerous health problems through the years, which I am very grateful. Your knowledge is so valuable I wish every town had a Justin. Thank you for your dedication to healing and making life a bit better.
    Love, Starla

  8. I have relied on Justine’s expertise and friendly advice for any problems I ask about. She is such a friend and asset to our health and we are lucky to have her in Edmonds! We won’t let her retire.

  9. I have relied on Justine’s expertise and friendly advice for any problems I ask about. She is such a friend and asset to our health and we are lucky to have her in Edmonds! We won’t let her retire. She is like Family!

  10. Justin always greets me with hugs (if allowed!) and smiles. She & Carolyn know the best advice to give for whatever I have a problem with. We are lucky to have her in Edmonds, she is like family!

  11. Congratulations Justin.
    When it comes to health and wellness you are the lady in the know. I have for years counted on your knowledge when it comes to my personal health and what to take and what not to take.
    Many thanks to you and your staff!

  12. Justin has always BEEN there when I need her help, advice & encouragement. Her devotion to her business’s mission is beyond! She’s amazing. Edmonds is soooooo luck to have her!!!! Congratulations, Justin!

  13. Thank you all for your compliments! I am here because you support me and give me a reason to show up every day.

  14. Justin, I’m so proud of you for being able to continue to successfully push through in today’s world. Thanks for all your support with my health!

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