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The jonkie: When a trend goes bad

The jonkie: When a trend goes bad

Worse than a mullet. Worse than a rattail. Worse than a balding bowl cut.

Yes, I bring you the jonky, (pronounced YON-kee), an absolutely awful haircut that is embraced by a large sector of Cuban males (and a few outlying ladies).

There are differing theories on the origins of the jonky. Some say it’s a style that came from Italian junkies, others blame widespread lobotomies. It’s really gained popularity because of a reggaeton star who made a song, and accompanying music video, all about this hairstyle.

One of my friends in Cuba is a hairstylist, and he says that, once the hair has been properly cut, the look is achieved by a combination of flat-irons and hair wax, leading me to wonder if the jonkies have to sleep in a geisha-like headrest to protect the look.

Regardless of how the look is maintained, according to my friend, there are even competitions, where all of the jonkies congregate and try and out-do each other with the highest jonky or most creative expression of it.

I’ve been provided endless hours of free entertainment scourging Havana as a jonk-arazzi, snapping pictures of every manifestation of this completely outrageous style. Let’s take a look at a few.

April 2012

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