All you need to know about Maasai bead necklaces

A Maasai necklace is a traditional east African necklace, worn by the Maasai people of Kenya and Tanzania.

They are the most common type of African necklaces and are especially worn along with custom Maasai attire such as decorated dresses, beaded bracelets, beaded earrings, and decorated sandals.

If you’re like most of us, you know how beautiful Maasai necklaces are.

From their color patterns, shapes, decorations… everything.

Maybe you’ve seen them on the internet, or maybe you own them, or maybe one of your friends or family members own them.


How much do you really know about Maasai Necklaces?

Like I mentioned before, Maasai necklaces are famous among the Maasai people (specifically women) of Kenya and Tanzania.

The Maasai people live in Narok and Kajiado counties in Kenya, and northern Tanzania, around Mt. Kilimanjaro… and are best known for their unique sense of fashion.

They hand-make their necklaces from scratch using materials such as beads, tough manila strings, and animal skin.

Maasai necklaces come in different shapes, colors, sizes, and have traditional meanings among the Maasai people.

Do Maasai necklaces mean anything to the Maasai community?

Absolutely. They mean everything to the Maasai women. And you will hardly find a Maasai woman without a Maasai beaded necklace.

In fact, to the Maasais, beaded necklaces have deeper meanings. They don’t just wear them for beauty reasons.

For example, mature and young Maasai women both wear unique necklaces with unique designs, and unique meanings attached to them.

For mature Maasai women, necklaces symbolize values such as dependency, maturity, and responsibility… while for younger women, they symbolize beauty, attraction, fashion, and community pride.

Where do you find Maasai necklaces in Kenya?

The best place to find the Maasai necklaces is Maasai Market, an open-air market for selling handmade jewelry in Nairobi.

Another place to find Maasai necklaces in Kenya is The Village Market, a shopping mall at Gigiri, Nairobi.

You can also find them in Narok and Kajiado towns, and many other open-air markets and shops countrywide.

Why are Maasai necklaces “so special”?

First, Maasai necklaces are hand made from scratch by real humans. This ensures the quality of the final product.

Secondly, Maasai necklaces are made from tough materials such as cowhides, tough manila strings, and beads. All these raw materials are also water-resistant. This enhances the durability of Maasai necklaces. You can literally have a Maasai beaded necklace for years and years and it will still look like you bought it last week.

Thirdly, Maasai necklaces have a unique design, unique color patterns, and even silver plates that further enhance their beauty. 

Finally, Maasai beaded necklaces allow room for flexibility and customization. You can have a custom necklace with your name on it, your country flag on it… anything you can imagine!

Evolution of Maasai beaded necklaces.

Originally, Maasai beaded necklaces were only common with the Maasai people.

However, things have changed.

They are now worn almost globally.

They are now sold in almost every part of the world.

For these other parts of the world, Maasai beaded necklaces are about beauty and elegance. No much meaning is attached to them except just for beauty.

If you need Maasai beaded necklaces in the US, you can order them online from our store.



Here’s an overview of this post.

  • Maasai beaded necklaces are majorly worn by women of the Maasai people of Kenya and Tanzania.
  • Maasai beaded necklaces have a deeper meaning to the Maasai people. They don’t wear these beaded necklaces just for beauty purposes.
  • In Kenya, you can get beaded Maasai necklaces from the Maasai Market and Village Market in Nairobi, and other open-air markets countrywide.
  • Maasai beaded necklaces are also sold worldwide mainly for beauty reasons.
  • You can order Maasai beaded necklaces and other authentic African jewellery from our store, Divine Elegance Fashion. Check our collections now.

However, it is important to note that Maasai beaded necklaces are not the only Maasai jewelry. The Maasai people have a wide range of unique and beautiful beaded jewelry such as beaded bracelets, beaded earrings, beaded bags, beaded hats, and beaded sandals.

What do you think about this post? Do you think we missed something? Please leave a comment below.

Note. This post is not an end-all-be-all about the Maasai necklaces… but rather a brief overview of them. We will keep adding new information so you can keep up to date with the Maasai beaded necklaces.

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