Native Indian Hairstyles

The Mohawk style originated with the Pawnee tribe

Native Indian Hairstyles
Facts and information about the History of Clothing and Native Indian Hairstyles. Traditional Native Indian Hairstyles varied from tribe to tribe. Short hair, long, hair, braids the Chongo, shaved and plucked hair and the famous Mohawk hairstyle were all worn by Native Americans.

The famous Mohawk style, also referred to as the Mohican, actually originated from the Pawnee tribe. The long hair of the women of Hopi and Zuni tribes was worn in a traditional chongo style with a hair knot called a Homsoma which was wrapped in white yarn. This article provides facts and information on the Native Indian hairstyles adopted by different tribes.

Traditional Indian Hairstyles Fact Sheet

  • Native Indian Hairstyles Fact 1: The men of the Pueblo tribe cut their hair short across the forehead like the modern fringe and knotted it into a club at the back
  • Native Indian Hairstyles Fact 2: The men of the Sioux and many other tribes of the Great Plains plaited their hair into two long braids, sometimes wrapped in wrapped in otter or beaver skins, that hung down in front of the chest. Sioux women wore their hair in two, thick braids decorated with beads
  • Native Indian Hairstyles Fact 3: The men of the Great Plains parted the hair in the middle and the parting line was often painted red
  • Native Indian Hairstyles Fact 4: Many men shaved their hair leaving a scalp lock to which a roach headdress was attached
  • Native Indian Hairstyles Fact 5: Pima men often twisted their long hair into hair rolls, which they would wind up around their heads which they often covered with a  turban
  • Native Indian Hairstyles Fact 6: The first cutting of a child’s hair was usually attended with religious rites. The cuttings were burned as it was believed that an enemy could bewitch a person if they obtained possession of the hair
  • Native Indian Hairstyles Fact 7: The Nez Perce tribe wore their hair long and let it fall loosely over the back and shoulders
  • Native Indian Hairstyles Fact 8: The Pawnee introduced the 'Mohawk' hair style. They shaved their hair to leave a scalp lock, stiffened with fat and paint, that stood straight up from the head like a crest. The Pawnee men not only plucked their beards but also plucked their eyebrows
  • Native Indian Hairstyles Fact 9: The long hair of Pueblo women from the Zuni and Hopi tribes was worn in a traditional chongo style with a hair knot called a Homsoma which was wrapped in white yarn.
  • Native Indian Hairstyles Fact 10:  When girls from the Hopi tribe reached womanhood, their hair was dressed in two large whorls at the side of the head in a squash blossom design which was the Hopi symbol of fertility
  • Native Indian Hairstyles Fact 11: Women of the Navajo tribe kept their hair long which was worn in a traditional hair knot called a Tsiiyeel which was wrapped in white yarn
  • Native Indian Hairstyles Fact 12: The young men of the Mohican tribe wore a head band made from deer hair that was dyed scarlet
  • Native Indian Hairstyles Fact 13: Kickapoo men partially shaved their hair leaving a mane at the back of the head
  • Native Indian Hairstyles Fact 14: The women of the Iowa tribe wore their hair in two braids if they were single, and one braid down the back if they were married
  • Native Indian Hairstyles Fact 15: The Wyandot tribe were called "Hurons"  by the French, meaning "bristly" or "savage haired" in reference to their coarse black hair that extended in a mane from the forehead to the nape of the neck, which was decorated with a stiff roach headdress
  • Native Indian Hairstyles Fact 16: The men of the Crow tribe grew their hair for all their lives and it was so long that it swept the ground behind him. The mane of Chief Long-hair measured ten feet, seven inches in length
  • Native Indian Hairstyles Fact 17: Many tribes would cut their hair as a sign of mourning
  • Native Indian Hairstyles Fact 18: Native Americans took great care of their hair. A brush made from stiff grass was used for combing and a pointed stick was used for parting and painting
  • Native Indian Hairstyles Fact 19: Oil and perfumes were applied to the hair to keep it sweet smelling
  • Native Indian Hairstyles Fact 20: False hair was worn by the Mandan, Crow, Assiniboine and the Yuma tribes. Horse hair, or occasionally buffalo hair, was used to lengthen natural hair
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