The proud Himba women take several hours for beauty care every morning. The entire body is rubbed with a cream, which consists of rancid butterfat and ochre powder. The aromatic resin of the Omuzumba bush is added as well. The cream lends the body an intense reddish shine, which corresponds to the Himba ideal of beauty.
Kaokoland (or Kaokoveld) in northern Namibia is the home of the about 6000 Himba. The friendly people are closely related to the Herero. Both ethnic groups speak the same language. The Himba are a pastoral people. They predominantly breed cattle and goats and lead a nomadic life. Depending on the time of year, they move with their herds to different watering places.
Clothes, hairstyle and jewellery are all of particular significance to the Himba and are part of their tradition and culture. Even newborn babies are adorned with pearl necklaces. When the children are a little older, bangles made of beaten copper and shells are added.
Top: Young Himba woman. Below: At the Kunene River, Namibia's border with Angola. Left: Himba woman with baby.