Congo, Democratic Republic, is a country in central Africa. Many tribes in the country believe that in case a woman is married, and it happens that their husband passes on, then the husband’s family should shave off your hair. This practice is believed to bring good luck to the family as it chases away the dead husband’s evil spirits.

History of Shaving the Widow’s Hair

In Congo, Democratic Republic, this is a practice that started a long time ago with the ancestors who used it to chase away misfortunes in the family. They believed it was a way of avoiding bad luck, sickness, or even death in the family. However, not all tribes in the country practice this culture, and currently, with modernization, it is vanishing with young widows not following this practice.

Why shaving the widow’s hair brings luck

Shaving a widow after their husband dies is believed to bring luck to the family. According to their beliefs, the dead husband’s spirit remains in the hair, and therefore when the husband’s family shaves it off, it signifies that they have gotten rid of it. The step thus saves the family from misfortunes.

How shaving a widow’s hair is done

Shaving of the widow is done immediately after the husband’s burial or several days later, depending on the tribe. The dead husband’s family goes to the widow and shaves off her hair as they incarnate to send away the evil spirit.

How to shave off a widow’s hair at home

Shaving a widow can be a tricky process as they still are in the process of mourning their spouse. However, it is a practice that you can try to keep away the evil spirits and involves scraping off the widows head with a razor blade. Quite often, as soon as her hair grows or after a stipulated period, the husband’s family will shave off the widow’s hair

Interesting & fun fact about shaving off a widow’s hair as a good luck charm

  • The widow’s hair is scraped off in an untidy way so that she can look untidy and ugly, making her easily identifiable