So you got yourself tickets to your first rave. You’re ready to rage. You’ve heard stories about the vibes. You’re excited.

Fast forward to rave day, you’re with your squad. Everything’s good, Ekali’s dropping nothing but fire. You take a breather, and notice a number of people wearing funky bracelets made out of pony beads.

What the fuck. Plastic jewelry is a thing? Yes my friend, yes it is.

Just don’t call them beads. They’re called Kandi, and that’s what you’re here to find out more about. Kandi is what you see ravers wearing on their shoes, backpacks, wrists, and even as face masks.

But wait, why would anyone want to wear Kandi?

Once upon a time, drug dealers would don these pretty pony beads as a way for druggas to identify them. These boys were the original Kandi kids and lived by the PLUE creed – Peace, Love, Unity, Ecstasy. Fans of these music festivals thought the bracelets were dope, and it gradually became a widespread rave symbol.

Kandi is typically hand-made with pony beads and elastic string (that you can easily find on Amazon), and contains a unique phrase that describes the wearer. An interesting accessory aside, Kandi is also an amazing way to make new friends at a rave.

What typically goes down is that a raver gifts one of their Kandi to someone who doesn’t have any, welcoming them to the family. The newly initiated raver in turn makes their own, and continues the tradition at their next rave. Over time, ravers began to replace the old PLUE creed with a new one based on PLUR – Peace, Love, Unity, Respect. The gift of Kandi represents the bond you have formed with a new friend, and perfectly summarizes everything that a rave should be about.

Now that you know what Kandi is, go get some for yourself and create many amazing memories.