Mark Bustos is a hair stylist working in New York City in a boutique salon, where the prices are pretty hefty by normal standards, starting at $150; however, he spends every Sunday, his only day off, searching the streets of NYC for homeless people in need of a haircut and food—for free.
It all began when he visited the Philippines back in 2012 to see his family and saw the conditions that some of the local children were living in. Feeling determined to help in his own special way, he decided to rent a chair at a barbershop while he was there to give those children free haircuts. He told the Huffington Post,
“The feeling was so rewarding, I decided to bring the positive energy back to NYC,” marking the start of his philanthropic efforts in New York City.
At the time of the publication, he had also helped out in Jamaica, Costa Rica, and Los Angeles, all known for their level of poverty where his efforts were likely much-appreciated. According to his Instagram, he has also since been to such places as Miami and China and has events scheduled in Chicago.
Every Sunday, Mark sets out on the streets, usually with his girlfriend, and approaches each human by saying, “I want to do something nice for you today.” His girlfriend asks them what they would like to eat and provides free food for them as well, something most of them are not accustomed to choosing. One person told Bustos that, “Nobody ever asks me what I actually want. I usually just get leftovers and scraps.”
One way Mark tries to catch others’ attention to encourage them to be kind to those less fortunate and spark a movement is by cutting their hair in popular areas or streets. Though this was his intention, his Instagram posts and the amount of people that have seen Bustos at work have earned him the title of celebrity hair stylist. He has even captured the attention of Instagram itself, who featured Bustos as a part of their mission to spread awareness of #WorldKindnessDay, which was on November 13th.
Mark Bustos may be working on a small project to make the world a better place, but his small efforts, like so many others, have a big impact on those whom he helps. His most memorable “client” to date, Jemar Banks, allegedly looked quietly in the mirror after his free haircut and simply asked Bustos, “Do you know anyone that’s hiring?” You can follow Mark Bustos on Instagram to see the work and kindness he spreads everyday and maybe he’ll even inspire you to #BeAwesomeToSomebody.
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