Entry #33: Making Lotion from Scratch!

Date: 18 June 2019
Time: 9:55pm
Location: Bedroom #6

We’re going to thrive out here boys.

We actually learned how to make a moisturizer from scratch.

More commonly understood as a “jelly”, this moisturizer would be similar to a cream that you put on from a tub than a lotion from a bottle. From the work of previous Peace Corps volunteers, we were able to follow their instructions in order to make a jelly from scratch.

The whole purpose of this was to get in to the feel of doing Income Generating Activities for our local communities when we are placed in site.

Um. Income Generating Activities? That sounds like business talk.

Yup yup yup.

Income Generating Activities, or IGAs, are simply informal activities that we’ve identified our local community members can do to make a little extra income for the family. This could mean selling some handmade wares, food stands, or other small services, all in the effort to make the home life just a little bit easier.

For us, as AED volunteers, one of our objectives is to support the community by teaching and guiding community members to pursue or continue making side income for the family through IGAs. It simply means making money on the side for the family. It’s a bit different than an entrepreneurial venture, where the purpose for the latter is to make money for the sake of making money. Methods are the same, but the purpose is where they differentiate.

Lotion from scratch? Tell me more.


From scratch, in this context, means we used basic ingredients such as beeswax, vegetable oil, aloe vera, and fragrance to make our lotion.

It started with heating up the oil in a large pot using our stove. After getting the pot of oil nice and hot, we added the beeswax to melt down until it was fully dissolved. Taking it off the heat, we added fragrance and aloe vera to complete the mix. Letting the concoction cool down, we poured them in to plastic ingredients and it slowly solidified in to the final product for sale.

As a side note, I would actually use this jelly for myself, it was pretty good if I do say so myself 🙂

And that’s it! It took about an hour or so for the whole process and it went great. After getting that settled, now came the real task, selling our jelly.

Sell-y the Jelly. Mock Free Market.

Bee-Beautiful with our wonderful, locally made moisturizer! You’ll glow like a thousand suns!

The final portion of this IGA event was to try and sell these products to our Language trainers and Peace Corps staff. Negotiation, learning about Ugandan habits in the market, and having a blast talking about our process, making the product and debriefing the entire event was great.

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