Orinni Kaipara has a moko kauae, a traditional lower chin tattoo worn by Māori women. It represents her ethnicity.
Māori tattooing or Tā moko represents family heritage and social status and is a rite of passage for Māori women, according to New Zealand’s tourism site. The main lines in a Māori tattoo are called manawa, which is the Māori word for heart and represents life journey. Traditionally tā moko artists used a chisel to scar and mark the skin.
Kaipara got this tattoo inked on her chin in 2019 after she got to know through a DNA test that she was 100 per cent Māori in 2017.
“It’s breaking new ground for us as Māori, but also for people of colour. Whether you’ve got a moko kauae or not. That is always at the back of my mind, that every step I make is like breaking through a glass ceiling,” she said in an interview to The Daily Mail.
Oriini has become a social media sensation post that and her Instagram feed tells us that she is also quite fashionable.
We really hope that she inspires various other women from different ethnicity to come up and take mainstream jobs and break traditional stereotypes.