6 Latina Beauty Traditions You Never Knew

Forget Keratin treatments – Latin America has always had a rich history of beautifying treatments. Around the World Beauty founder Stephanie Flor went on an aventura to learn more about the beauty roots of Latin American countries. Find out how women in other countries showcase their beauty and culture:

1. Hair Braiding

Hair Braiding

Throughout Peru, you will see the native women of all ages wearing long braids.  Long, braided hair represents much more than just a hairstyle to the Quechua; the braids signify the marital status of Peruvian women. Two braids reveals that a woman in the tribe is married, while one or many braids means that she is single.


2. Amazonian Body Clay

Amazonian Body Clay

Volcanic mud (also known as medicinal clay) has been used for thousand of years to improve the appearance of skin texture. In Colombia you can find mud baths just waiting for you to jump on in. The clay is created when volcanic ash mixes with water and contains a combination of minerals including sodium, magnesium, and potassium. It works as a natural exfoliator that clears the skin of acne problems and rosacea while nourishing to the body in the process. 


3. Achiote

Achiote

Many Incas used achiote, or rather, the product extracted from the seeds of the achiote tree, to paint their faces as a symbol to the gods within the mountains to protect them from the dangers of trekking. It’s used as body paint as well as paint for fabric and bark. Women, mostly in Ecuador, use achiote as makeup for sacred rituals and special events. In fact, the plant’s nickname is the “lipstick tree.”


4. Cacao

Cacao

Cacao is filled with antioxidants and vitamins A, C and E. It also creates a protective sunblock against the sun, which works against sunspots, stretch marks and has anti-aging benefits. Cacao is one of Dominican Republic's biggest exports and is used for all things beauty. Women utilize it from everything as a hair repair treatment to a lip balm for chapped lips. Look for extra virgin, that has not been bleached, refined or deodorized and always go for organic.


5. Sacred Inca Baths

Sacred Inca Baths

Inca baths are sacred as many consider water a purification tool for the soul.  It is thought to hold healing and cleansing qualities. Offerings like flowers, confetti, and beans are added into the water that symbolize different things, such as prosperity, wealth, health, good luck, and fertility. Legend has it that virgin girls would bathe in similar waters for purification as a coming-of-age before a wedding night or for ceremonial Inca beginnings. They are very popular in Peru.


6. Brazil's Golden Bleaching

Brazil’s Golden Bleaching

Bleaching your hair at the beach is normal for Brazilian beauties, using a yellow/gold crème applied to the area you want to bleach while in the sun. It sits on the skin for about half an hour and then you wash it off by jumping in the ocean. Brazilians love it for bleaching their arms!