Wearing African waist beads is an age-old tradition and dates back to as early as the 15th century. According to African Facts, “ Jewelry in Africa is seldom just an ornamental; rituals, religion, and ceremonies play a large part.” Early waist beads were made from seeds, bones, and shells and worn for various customary and spiritual reasons. Modern waist beads use seeds, glass beads, or crystal stones but still carry their ancient beauty.
In Ghanian culture, gifts waist beads to welcome a girl into womanhood after starting her first period. African women know what types of beads and colors to wear for special occasions such as weddings. The beads are a traditional staple in African culture, with colors and sizes symbolizing everything from social status to family backgrounds. Ghanian women also wear large waist beads to attract the attention of suitors when she is fertile.
The most significant symbolism of waist beads is the celebration of womanhood. However, there seems to be some confusion on the reasons to wear waist beads in America since they are still relatively new to the American market.
Fortunately, waist beads serve many of the same purposes now as they did in the past and they aren’t just sold in African markets anymore. Joeanna’s Collection supplies an array of waist beads for the feminine collective. Our waist bead wearers use the beads for the following reasons.
1. Waist and Weight Watching
Stretchy jeans got you in denial about your expanding waist? Waist beads help wearers keep track of those sneaky pounds. The waist beads don’t stretch as your body does. They remain the exact length that you initially measured for your beads. Waist beads will shimmy up and down your waist as you gain and lose weight.
The best part is that the beads give you an immediate response, unlike a scale. You can feel the beads tighten and climb up from your hips as your stomach expands during each meal. The beads assist you with your weight management goals.
2. Spiritual Well-being
In Ghanaian culture, beads have long been considered carriers of spiritual energy. For example, bone beads made from cattle were significant in Ghanaian tribes with animalistic faith. Beads were also passed down as family heirlooms with a common belief that they passed along ancestral knowledge and wisdom.
Some spiritual women believe in the supernatural power of the beads in womb awareness. Particular waist beads are associated with spiritual healing, peace, and balance. As Queen Afua stated in her book, Sacred Woman, “the body temple is a sacred altar.” Some women wear their charmed waist beads during meditation for the beads to bring protection to their heart, body, and soul.
3. Enhanced Feminine Confidence
Accentuating the curves of your waist and hips while displaying beautiful body ornaments can feel empowering. Maybe even liberating for the women stuffed into business casual attire five days a week. Waist beads add beauty and sensuality to the wearer.
People can’t’ help but admire JC clients in their Rain beads glowing down the street. Looking and feeling beautiful in your waist beads enhances feminine confidence, much like a diamond necklace. Many JC clients claim to feel more confident when wearing their waist beads.
4. Fertility and Intimacy
Adorning your waist in attractive beads draws attention both inside and outside of you. African waist beads are known for their seductive powers evoking the desires of those who gaze upon them. In the Yoruba culture, some women add alluring fragrances to their beads to be irresistible to suitors.
Larger beads or bells were added to a fertile woman’s waist among the Ghanaian Ashante and Krobo cultures to alert nearby suitors. Some other African cultures view waist beads as lingerie that should be worn under clothes and only seen by the wearer’s intimate partner. Waist beads are known for their fertility and sensual enhancements and are also worn during sex when trying to conceive.
Waist beads make the wearer mindful of her posture. There is no point in showing off your JC Deep beads if they look crazy all jumbled up. The position of the beads changes based on the way you sit, stand, walk, and breathe. Misplaced beads cause you to readjust your posture to align with the waist beads.
There are more than enough reasons as to why people should wear African waist beads. They are such a unique multi-purposeful ornament that looks not only great but is also excellent for you.
Tell us why you wear your waist beads in the comments below.