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Women In African Tribe Protest Painful ‘Lip Plate’ Beautification Process

by / April 23, 2014 Black News 146 Comments

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The Ethiopian Suri Tribe defines beauty based upon the size of a womans lip plate. www.blacklikemoi.com

Ethiopian Suri Tribe Member

Reported by Barry Burch Jr.

The phrase “Beauty is in the eye of the beholder” typically means that beauty is unique to the person viewing it.  However, beauty may also be interconnected with geography.  While rather skinny women may grace our magazines in America, a rather plump one would have all the guys chasing after them in China. Very similarly, women in America with flawless faces are usually put on a peddle-stool, while in Africa, it’s all about the lip plate.

Sure, it may not look like the fashion choice for your average American, but for the Ethiopian Suri tribe, it’s more than fashion, it’s a sign of beautiful.   

The process of lip plate insertion begins after puberty has been reached.  It involves two of the girl’s bottom teeth being removed during an intense ritual, then a small hole being cut into her bottom lip, as reported by Mail Online.

After the hole has been inserted, a clay disk is put into it, which stretches the lip.  The process is akin to flesh-tunnel piercing, which has become popular among teenagers in the U.K.

The significance of the lip plate is great.  The larger it is, the more cows the girl’s father can demand from another man in exchange for her hand in marriage.  The standard price, according to Mail Online is 40 cows for a small plate and 60 cows for a larger one.

While men have their body beautification requirements as well, they are much less taxing.  The men usually paint their bodies with a basic paint made from herbs and plants mixed with soil.  Their ritual involves the tribesmen covering themselves with it before sculpting it into patterns.

Young women have been saying “no” to lip plates as of late.  The stretching of the lip is incredibly painful, and the removal of their teeth is no better.

Barry is an award-winning writer and political scientist.  His business, “Barry Writes,” provides biographies, speeches, press releases and so forth to individuals and businesses in need of potent and compelling literature.  Reach him @ Facebook.com/barrywrites and Twitter.com/barryburchjr

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