Ru Az

Beauty is a powerful thing

A Niger tribe has male beauty cult, which is considered, as strong and at the same time, beautiful sex, and it is demonstrated at special holiday in Gerewol every year. This requires the most careful training for a whole year: the candidates for beauty king title are precluded to take care of their teeth and eye balls’ whiteness. How to achieve this? Apparently, to eat a healthy diet and to radiate positivity more frequently, and as for locals, they are quite good at this. And perhaps, all people from this tribe are happy, as they don’t have such concept, as bonds of wedlock: joining of hearts and bodies takes place exclusively on base of mutual appetence!..

And direct training for tournament starts by application of bright, colored makeup. Local yellow and red colored minerals are of help here. Along with white smile and ability to rotate eyes to different sides, paint is to underline distinctive features of face and narrowness of nose, which is highly appreciated among Wodaabe women. For higher expressiveness the eye shadow is put. Special attention is paid to hairdo, decorated by copper and straw, ostriches’ feathers. A special drink, assisting men during dances, included into tournament program is made. It promotes them to go into trance and allows them loosening up and demonstrating maximal charm.

It can’t be denied, that the cult of male beauty imposes an imprint on local men at their relationship with women, and in our opinion, generates even strange complexes at some of them. Imagine yourself: if a Wodaabe man considers himself insufficiently beautiful, then he may directly compel his girl friend to find a more attractive partner for herself, maybe she will be lucky to give birth to a future winner of the tournament! Indeed, nothing is more important for Wodaabe, than beauty!

Photo: Alexei Kolbov