The history of hair beads in the Black communities reaches far beyond just a hair accessory.
In the early fifteenth century, hairstyles and headwork functioned as a carrier of messages in most West African societies. And the citizens of these societies were people who filled the slave ships that said to the ‘New World’.
Within these cultures, hair was an integral part of a complex language system. Ever since African civilizations bloomed, hairstyles have been used to indicate a person’s religion, marital status, ethnic identity, and more.
Although the appearance of braids has somewhat changed over the past 5,000 years, the techniques have remained the same.
The History of Hair Beads
Hair accessories are not only used for style, but they are also functional. Consequently, this is one of the main factors that has given hair beads staying power. Hair accessories are of major importance throughout Africa.
In various Nigerian tribes, coral beads are worn as crowns in traditional wedding ceremonies. These crowns were referred to as okra to the Edo people and erulu to the Igbo culture. In Yoruba, an Oba’s crown, made of multicolored glass beads, is work by leaders of the highest authority.
Due to their versatility, hair beads and accessories are one of the most requested items at our beauty supply store. We believe it is because of our hair and how we style it, is our crown. It’s also a strength and symbol of the creativity that we show to the world.
Beading wasn’t just a hairstyle in ancient Africa, to Black slaves or even to women in the African diaspora today. Instead, we use hair accessories as a means of communicating to the word.
This month, we have stocked a variety of bead accessories. From beads to gold cuffs and multicolored strings, these items can be worn with braids, weaves and other styles.
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