Wearing Jewelry: Why Do We Do It?

Throughout the ages, in nearly every pocket of anthropological history you’ll uncover humans wearing jewelry.

It is a tradition of ours hallmarking civilization; a symbol of complex thought and a window into expression. But why is this a shared trait amongst cultures of humans separated through time and space, oceans and moons? What is it about jewelry that humanity adorns?


Jewelry always serves the specific needs of a society, but in general the answer comes down to the hierarchy one sits in the social ladder.

In the early stages of humanity, bones, feathers and wood were admonished in decoration of a man or woman’s beauty. Jewelry was crafted with the intention of signifying one’s value over other mates, to monumentalize great feats and accomplishments, and in ceremonialism to honor higher powers. But what fascinating in this string of uses is the power attributed in jewelry to bring people to a higher plane of existence. This is an important note to track as we continue in our lineage of jewelry wearing.