Young Woman's Extreme Beauty Ritual Is All for Love (VIDEO)

A 20-year-old Ethiopian woman is sort of the Kylie Jenner of her village. And no, I don't mean she's the star of a reality series about her selfie-obsessed African family. I mean that she went to extreme lengths to make her lips as big as they could possibly be. In fact, Kylie's lips look microscopic compared to Ataye Eligidagne's lips. The young woman has the largest lip disc in the world. That's the plate that women in some African tribes will slip into their pierced bottom lip and let the flesh stretch around it. It's a beauty ritual as common as nose jobs, boob implants, or lip injections are here in the US. In fact, more so. It's probably more comparable to wearing mascara.


In Ataye's Mursi village, teen girls have their lips slit, their two front teeth knocked out, and then a small clay disc inserted into the lower lip to elongate it. Increasingly bigger plates are inserted so the lips continue to stretch longer and longer. The bigger the disc, the more attractive the woman and the bigger her marriage dowry -- which is normally a herd of cattle in this part of the world.

But if you think Ataye, who was discovered by cinematographer Abrahem Joffe, looks strange or even scary with her 60-centimeter in circumference lip plate, imagine what the people in her village would think of Heidi Montag or Pamela Anderson! Lip plates have been around a lot longer than breast implants.

Ataye says she suffers no adverse effects from this enormous lip plate and can eat and drink fine. However, the lip disc is reportedly starting to be banned by Ethiopia and losing its popularity. Ataye apparently won't be pressing her daughter to take up the tradition and will instead allow her to make her own decision about it.

My guess is, much like Kylie Jenner, family tradition will win out, but I guess you never know.

Since Ataye has the biggest lip disc in the world, she must be considered a great beauty in her village -- heck, maybe in all the world.

What do you think of the lip disc?

Images via GiselaGiardino/Flickr; Daily Mail Online

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