Waist beads are a traditional African accessory that consist of small glass beads on a string or wire worn around the waist or hips. They come in different colors and shapes and may also include decorative stones, crystals, or charms.
Waist beads have been worn for centuries by women in many West African cultures. In more recent years they’ve gained popularity among women in the West. They’re also referred to as belly beads, waistline beads, or beaded waist chains.
In Ghana, Nigeria, Senegal, and other West African countries, waist beads are a symbol of femininity, fertility, sensuality, and spiritual well-being. Today, in both Africa and the United States, women use waist beads for aesthetic and practical purposes. We’ll cover the many reasons why waist beads remain such a popular accessory for women around the globe and how you can find the beads for your body.
How to choose the right waist beads for your body
The best thing about waist beads is how individual they are. You can wear as many strands of beads as you like, and you can wear them for whatever reason you want. They’re a powerful means of self-expression.
To measure yourself for waist beads, waist bead artist Anita from The Bee Stop first recommends deciding where you want your beads to sit on your body. Do you want them high on your waist? Down at your hips? Right at your belly button?
After you decide, wrap measuring tape or string around that part of your body to get the measurement. If you’re using a string, mark on the string where the two ends meet, then measure that length with a ruler. Try not to wrap the string or tape too snugly around your body. It will result in a tighter fit than you may anticipate.
Some waist beads are permanent. That means the string doesn’t stretch, and there’s no clasp to take the beads on or off. They’re designed to stay on your body 24/7 until they break or you decide to cut them off for good.
Some removable waist beads are also adjustable or come with extender chains. These may be a good option for people who want to continue wearing the same waist beads at any size without worrying about “fitting” into them. Instead, the beads fit you
It is perfectly fine to bathe, shower, swim, exercise, and be intimate with traditional African waist beads strung on cotton string. Once tied on securely they become an intimate extension of you, and you do everything in them. Just be mindful not to yank on them while pulling your pants down to use the bathroom. If you ever wanted to remove them, just use a pair of scissors and cut them off. SEE: How to Use Waist Beads For Weight Loss
How To Care For Waist Beads
By properly taking care of your waist bead you will ensure that your favorite waist beads lasts for a very long time. Here is how to care for waist beads:
- You can bathe, exercise and swim with your waist beads and chains on.
- To keep your beads at their most shiny, take them off before bathing.
- Excessive or repeated force over time will cause your waist beads to break.
- Be conscious of your waistbeads when removing your clothes and using the toilet.
- Always pull up your beads first, then pull down your pants.
- This will keep you from pulling on them which can cause them to break.
- If you use any exfoliating or brightening soaps, it is recommended that you take off your beads before bathing.
- Avoid putting creams, oils or perfumes directly on your waist beads.
- Metal Accents are non tarnish and nickel free but over time, they may become dull due to sweat and soap build up. Restore their shine by cleaning with a jewelry polishing cloth. SEE: Meaning of African Waist Beads Colors