China’s Huangluo Village: Home Of The World’s Longest Hair

We’ve all seen the shampoo commercials that show the beautiful woman massaging her gorgeously long locks with whatever product is being advertised and claiming that this magical product is the reason why her hair is soft, strong, long etc. Well it seems modern shampoo manufacturers have got it all wrong, what they really need to do to create the world’s best shampoo is make their way to Huangluo in China, which has received a Guinness book of Records certification for being the ‘world’s longest hair village’ and make a note of what the women there use!!

Huangluo village consists of just over 80 households and is inhabited by people of the Red Yao ethnicity, to them having long hair is an important cultural statement and is a long standing part of their tradition.

There are 120 women currently residing in Huangluo and the average length of hair is 1.7 meters long. The woman, whose hair is the longest, has locks that measure just over 2.1 meters – Rapunzel eat your heart out!

The women of the village believe that one of the reasons that their hair grows to such lengths is the fermented rice water they use to wash it. It looks kinda gross in the video, especially when they describe it as sour-smelling, but if it gives you hair like the women in this village have, I want me some of that!

Hair in Huangluo has always been important, up until a few years ago no one aside from a woman’s husband and children were permitted to see it when it was down, but thankfully this tradition has been lifted so everyone gets to see this amazingly long hair in all its glory! There was a fascinating sub-clause in this old tradition that stated that if a stranger happened to catch a glimpse of the woman’s hair whilst down, then he would have to spend 3 years living with the family as a son-in-law – weird, I wonder how many people got caught out like that!

Of the hair traditions that are still around, one states that Huangluo women are only allowed to cut their hair on one occasion in their lives, when they turn 16 years of age! The chopped locks are then given to the girl’s grandmother and made into a decorative hairpiece!

It is said that the Red Yao women’s hair is made up of three bunches. One is the hair that grows daily, the other is the ornamental hairpiece and the third bunch consists of the falling strands of hair which are collected each day. These bunches are used to create elaborate hairstyles that state things about the wearer. For example, if the hair is wrapped around the head, it means the woman is married but so far childless, if she has a small bun at the front it means she has had some buns in the oven and if she wears a kerchief around her head, it means she is looking for a suitor. Certainly eliminates all that time wasted in bars by singles chatting up people who are already attached!

The women of the village grow their hair because they believe it brings longevity and good fortune!

(Via China Daily)

About Sheniz Raif

I am, and think I have always been, a writer. I’ve been scribbling stories since I was old enough to hold a pen and thoroughly enjoy using my words to make people laugh or inspire them. I love going to gigs and am a professional groupie for a couple of awesome bands. I am an avid fan of socializing, football, film, and refusing to grow up! I’m also a proud member of the BODO UK team!