The Tuareg People are a group of “largely matrilineal semi-nomadic, pastoralist people of Berber extraction” who live in the Sahara.
In the Tuareg society, men traditionally wear veils, whereas women do not. One of the most recognizable veils worn by Tuareg men is called the Tagelmust. This is a blue colored veil that covers everything but the eyes of the men who wear it. Though other colors of the Tagelmust also exist, the traditional indigo color is part of the reason why Tuareg people are referred to as the “Blue People of the Desert”.
Though it has been said that Tuareg men began wearing veils to protect themselves from harsh Sahara sands, the men actually wear veils because the people in their society practice a distinctive branch of Islam. At the age of 25, men begin wearing veils that they never take off, even when surrounded by family.
An interesting aspect of Tuareg culture is the dynamic between the sexes. Women are given economic, political, and sexual freedom. This traditional matriarchy is the reason behind why the men of the Tuareg society are veiled, rather than women.