Mangbetu people live in Central Africa, in northeastern Congo. Their elongated heads gave them a distinctive look. At birth the heads of babies’ were tightly wrapped with cloth in order to give their heads the elongated look. Deformation usually starts just a month after birth for the next couple of years, until the desired shape has been reached or the child rejects the apparatus.
The custom of skull elongation, called Lipombo by the natives, was a status symbol among the Mangbetu ruling classes, it denoted majesty, beauty, power and higher intelligence.