10 African or Caribbean rituals after childbirth
In Africa or in the West Indies, our mothers have very effective post-natal methods. These rituals are shared from mother to daughter and from generation to generation. So, if you are looking for beauty routines after pregnancy, this article is for you.
- 1/ Massages with very hot water to firm up the stomach.
You stand on your back. Your mum will dip a towel in a bucket of very hot (almost boiling) water and then she puts the hot towel on your stomach and you massage. And you do it again until the water cools down. Then, tie the belly with a very tight loincloth. But you have to do it as long as possible in the morning or evening and you tie the belly with the loincloth.
- 2/ Wash with very hot water all over the body.
Wash your head and hair well for a few weeks.
- 3/ Sit on hot water either in the morning or in the evening.
This is a very hot sitz bath, common throughout Africa, to prevent bladder leakage. More precisely, you sit down to take the hot steam inside. You sweat a lot and then with your fingers you put the water in as if you were washing. Grandmothers consider this gesture to be part of the rituals of intimate hygiene.
- 4/ Drink hot water as a tea in the morning and evening.
You can also drink hot water with lemon.
- 5/ Use shea butter against stretch marks.
If you have had stretch marks after childbirth, in Africa, the belly is massaged with shea butter to reduce the stretch marks for 1 to 2 years. The result is amazing.
- 6/ Massage for babies with shea butter.
In Senegal, as in other African countries, babies’ bodies are massaged with shea butter.
- 7/ Limit your outings with a newborn.
When giving birth to a newborn, in some African countries (Congo, Somalia or others), women do not take their babies out for a minimum of 1 month, maximum 40 days.
- 8/ Breastfeeding is essential.
In Africa, 99% of babies are breastfed. Breast milk creates a “blood” link between mother and child. Breastfeeding lasts a long time and is considered essential for the survival of the baby.
- 9/ Carrot mask for dark faces and body parts.
If your face is dark, you can use an organic carrot mask. Carrots also naturally reduce dark spots.
How to do it?
- 1/ Grate two carrots, mix with the juice of one lemon.
- 2/ Apply for 10 minutes, rinse well.
- 10/ Dishes for pregnant women.
In Senegal, RCA and Zaire, after giving birth, women eat a meal, which is a mixture of potatoes, plantain, makabo, tuber, yam, unbeaten palm oil and half-groundnuts. In addition, in Cameroon, among the Bamilékés, it is customary to prepare nkui at least once a week when a woman has just given birth. It is a brown or black sticky Bamiléké sauce. It is accompanied by corn couscous. In some countries, for example in Senegal, women regularly drink broth, alternating with porridge.
What do you think?
Do you know of any other skincare rituals for pregnant women?
This is amazing. I love the easy to understand cultural traditions. From my culture in East Africa, this is very accurate. We also drink a lot of tea with milk to help with lactation, along with the porridge daily.