A continuation of the history of Molly Rose Balms.

Picture it. January 2013. I had been on a leave of absence from work due to severe sudden back issues. I was just about well enough to go back to work, but I was struggling to get paperwork from my doctor’s receptionist, both to be able to return and to confirm that I was bad enough in the first place to warrant paid leave. This unholy combination of apathy on the part of the receptionist and the doctor himself would ultimately result in my not being paid for three months of excused absence. But I’m not still bitter these five years later. Well, maybe just a little.

To put it mildly, I was panicking. I had student loans I was still paying, a phone bill, a credit card, rent. And no income. I maintain to this day that my immediate back issues stemmed from stress, and believe me, this was not helping. I didn’t know what to do. Then I remembered my lip balms.

Those lip balms. That recipe. That dream I had two years prior when I couldn’t find a job and I was going to venture into the world of working for myself and creating my own happiness. But then I got a job offer I couldn’t refuse, and the dream was tucked away, hibernating until I needed it again. And boy, did I need it now.

My mom generously gave me a small loan of $100 which I spent on ingredients and packaging. It was when I purchased those ingredients that I came across plant-based waxes, as opposed to beeswax. The last-minute decision to make vegan lip balms has changed the course of my business and my life. But that’s for a future post.

I set to work making lip balms, designing labels, and taking product photos. I miraculously remembered the password of the Etsy shop I put together two years before (which is still up, by the way, but only with a very basic assortment of products). And then, on February 7, 2013, my Etsy shop opened for business.

Day 1 of Molly Rose Balms

Next week, we’ll see what I learned in my first year of being a business owner.


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