For centuries, cowrie shells have had a deep cultural and spiritual significance in many African cultures and were once even used as currency across continents. The beige shells have also been used to create stunning jewelry, head accessories, and other wearable pieces. Recently, Lupita Nyong’o stepped out with an intricate cowrie shell headpiece that looked fit for royalty.
On October 21, the Us actor wore a deep v-neck cream gown and her headpiece at the GO Campaign Annual GO Gala held in Los Angeles. Atop her bald head sat a mesh cap with the small beige shells clustered together. Some of the shells covered her forehead like a thick fringe. You’ll have to zoom in closely to see the strings of amber and clear tiny beads that connect each shell to the netted cap.
The shells did not cover each inch of the mesh. Her crown was free of them, but it was surrounded by a ring of shells. Below that, you can see the nets of her cap and all of the cowrie shells that surround the piece and the rest of her head.