Beauty is defined by society, by media, by culture and even by the individual himself.
Every country has a different perspective of beauty. In Senegal, it is very common to buy one’s own fabric and to give it to the tailor to be sewn nicely. Colours and long flowing fabrics are a common everyday sight. Additionally, women tend to prefer the extravagant and the big. The more people look at you, the better.
In comparison to France, in which the colour palette is a lot more toned down and make-up is used to look ‘naturally beautiful’, Senegal uses everything from hair to shoes to stand out from the crowd.
Here are a few keypoints of Senegal fashion:
- Like everything else, make-up is colourful. Most Senegalese women colour coordinate their eyeshadow with whatever they are wearing.
- Taille-basse, a top and skirt sewn from african fabric is very popular amongst Senegalese females. Very tight, it compliments roundness and softens features.
- Hair-styles are very important. Senegalese are very good at tressing and often add false hair into their tresses to have long hair. Many women also like to wear wigs or a “greffage” (false hair sewn onto the head).
- Many young men like to do the ‘checkdown’ (wearing their jeans very low).
- Fabrics of great variety and price can be found on every cornerstreet and change every year, influencing new fashion trends. It is for mariages, baptisms and big muslim celebrations (such as Tabaski), that people wear carefully chosen, embroidered and extravangant fabrics.
Senegalese fashion reflects rich colours, traditional patterns and wide fabrics. Western style clothes however, are very popular as well, especially amongst the younger generations.
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