Tradition of waist beads

African tradition of waist beads developed during the ancient times. In Ancient Egypt they were identified as girdles worn by women as a status symbol. In West Africa, the tradition was popular for the Yoruba tribe. The tradition of waist beads originated among the Yoruba tribe mainly in Nigeria. Yoruba women wore waist beads during traditional ceremonies. Women who were given waist beads during marriage ceremonies would add more waist beads to seduce their husbands but tradition forbids a woman from showing her marital waist beads to a person of the opposite sex outside the marriage. The tradition of waist beads is also in Ghana where they signified wealth and aristocracy as well as femininity. In Ghanaian culture, waist beads play a significant role in the customs of self expression. Beads in Ghanaian culture can be used as a tool for communication to express messages, symbols, or ideas. Modern tradition of waist beads is for weight control and management. Waist beads can be given during Tribal ceremonies as part of tradition. For example, when a young girl is becoming of age, she is adorned with beads. Waist beads were worn for spiritual purposes among many West African tribes for spiritual protection. They believed the beads impact the knowledge and wisdom of family ancestors. Waist beads worn for a particular significance can attract spiritual energy based on the sequences of color, their importance and symbolism. This can bring a source of inspiration and spiritual enlightenment which is why some waist beads are created to wear for an intended purpose. Women in Guinea would wear waist beads as tradition to indicate their marital status. If their waist beads were visible that means they have no suitor. If their waist beads are hidden, that indicates that they have a suitor or a partner and waist beads are only mean to be seen by their lover or husband. Traditionally, belly dancers or Islamic women in East African cultures would display their beads over their clothes or on bare midriffs. Women from several other African countries have been known to wear waist beads for tradition. A few of those African countries are: Senegal, Ivory Coast, Gambia, Liberia, Sierra Leone, Kenya, and Ethiopia.