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Himba Tribe: Beauty Without Teeth and Dirt

Himba Tribe: Beauty Without Teeth and Dirt

By on May 19, 2021 in Blog |

Namibia where the desert covers the most part of the territory is rapidly modernizing all national infrastructure and daily life. However, some indigenous tribes that preserve primitive traditions can still be found in the country. One such tribe is the Himba people. Although the tribe is increasingly attracting the attention of tourists, they are not trying to make money by posing for photos or selling handmade products. The people of the Himba tribe simply allow tourists to calmly observe their unique daily routine. And it is interesting for tourists from modern and advanced countries to watch the people of the tribe living in same conditions as it would be the Stone Age.

Cattle, Tooth Removal and Lack of Water

In Namibia, a country with a constant shortage of water, there is never a shortage of milk because cattle are raised here. Cattle are highly valued by people of the Himba tribe, so it is no surprise that the potential of men are evaluated by the number of animals that belong to him. However, it is not necessary to disclose exactly how many cattle the young man has, as this, according to locals, is particularly rude.

Love for animals is also proven by unusual customs. At the age of twelve, two lower teeth are removed for all kids because these teeth are also missing in the mouth of cow. Such a ritual is a door to enter the adult world and become more respected in the eyes of the elders.

Water is extremely expensive in Namibia, so it is not wasted for showering here. Himba people have used a special cream made from butter, herbs, and volcanic pumice stone for all purposes of hygiene. It protects against bacteria and unpleasant odors. In addition, such a cream gives the skin a special pink tint. The tribe, pampered by unusual procedures, believe that they are the most beautiful in the world, so they do not follow the standards accepted in the Western world.

Wooden Pillows and Arrows

Every morning, Himba women spend a few hours to make their hairstyles. However, instead of shampoo or hairspray, they use goat hair, butter, and dirt. In this way, they fasten dreadlocks grown from an early age and sleep on wooden pillows. One year after marriage or the birth of the first child, the impressive dreadlocks are decorated with a small leather ornament, symbolizing another stage of maturity.

Wooden Pillows and Arrows
Wooden Pillows and Arrows

The men of the tribe also pay considerable attention to hair. They cherish a dreadlock reminiscent of one horn before the wedding. After getting married, they must cover their heads with a special hat forever. Such a hat cannot be removed, so married Himba men have an arrow-like tool in order to scald the itchy scalp.No less than hairstyles, Himba people care about jewelry. Every woman wears massive metal products. As such necklaces can weigh up to a few kilograms, locals are happy to accept chains donated by tourists.

Men also wear Western clothes. In Namibia, do not be surprised to see a member of the Himba tribe who has never seen a TV in his life, but is wearing a Barca football club shirt. Although Western items are becoming more common in the daily life of Himba people, the locals are trying to maintain their way of life. But the influence of the modern world is inevitable.