The Guardian

How Hurricane Maria forced Puerto Ricans to change their hair

After months of heat, humidity and power outages, long, blown-straight hair is hard to come by – inspiring new looks crafted at improvised barber shops
A woman does her granddaughter’s hair in an area of San Isidro, Puerto Rico, without electricity in October. Hurricane Maria has forced people to change their grooming routines. Photograph: Mario Tama/Getty Images

Not long after Hurricane Maria tore through Puerto Rico, unleashing floodwaters, flattening homes and knocking out the power supply, Consuelo Quezada noticed another, more subtle, change to life on the island.

Attending her first mass after the storm, Quezada saw that her fellow churchgoers did not have their usual Sunday morning hairstyles.

“I think I just saw everyone’s real hair for the first time in my life,” she told her family after the service.

Four months after the hurricane made landfall, ordinary life in the US territory is, and 15.5% of the population still lacks electricity.

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