The Mursi women are “more beautiful” with a bigger lip plate.
Beauty classification differs around the world, and within Africa it is no different. There are widely accepted standards and then there are some practices that might leave you in awe.
Nevertheless don’t judge. It might not be for you, but you can still respect it.
I came across this lip plate beauty and cultural practise used by the Mursi Tribe. It is more of a gender role on women. The mursi women are naturally beautiful. Black beauties to be precise
When you add the lip plate, uuhhm I feel it sort of takes away from their beauty. But this is just my opinion.
If there is one thing the Mursi people are known for, is that they are extremely dedicated to their culture. The Mursi tribe are one of the last remaining tribes in Africa to still wear traditional dress and accessories. They are also famous for their unique headdresses. Mursi women also paint their bodies as another symbol of beauty
The mursi women are however more famous for their lip plates which are made out of clay. The fascinating community sees the women more beautiful with the lip plates. The lip plates are also believed to give women strength and increase their self-esteem.
What is culture without the men in mind, right? It is said that the larger the lip plate a woman wears, the more her worth when she gets married meaning the more head of cattle her family can demand. Actually the men give more attention to the women with the lip plates.
Apart from beauty, the lip plates are also considered as a sign of adulthood, girls’ crossing over to the women hood.
So how and when is it done? Girls get their lip plates inserted at the age of 15 or 16, done by their mothers or a female figure in their lives. The lip is cut, and a small clay plate is inserted. Over the years, they start to wear larger lip plates causing their lips to stretch.
The plates are heavy so the women are not obliged to wear the clay lip plates all the time. I can imagine that they are also very uncomfortable.
So would you try out this beauty practice?
I do believe that we can learn and respect other people’s choices and culture diversity without really adopting it because to me, this is looks too painful to try
The Mursi people are located in Southwest Ethiopia, Omo valley in Southern Ethiopia near the border with Sudan.
Photo credit: Pinterest
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