Disaster Hair Don’t Care. How I Tamed My Hurricane Irma Mane.

My Go-To Hat from Montauk Tackle Helped Me Hide Disaster Hair
My Go-To Hat from Montauk Tackle Helped Me Hide Disaster Hair

Florida summers mean massive humidity which translates to wild, sometimes angry hair on my head. After more than 25 years calling Florida home, it’s only been the past few where I’ve surrendered to my stormy locks and let curls and frizz do their own thing during the sweaty, sticky, humid months.

But, following Hurricane Irma, my head had a different battle. Disaster hair caused by a lack of electricity and therefore no water (because I’m on a well). Honestly, I had much more on my mind and getting ready for emergency operations center duty each morning in the dark without water, I realized my disaster hair don’t care.

However, when I have clean hair, I feel better. I feel more confident about myself and have a better outlook on murky situations. Living in an air conditioned-free Southwest Florida home during the second week of September presented me with a challenge. It was hot, sweaty and sticky and I thought near impossible to have presentable hair, but I found ways and I’m sharing these tips with you.

Hide Disaster Hair with a Hat
Hiding unwashed, or unruly hair under a hat is a pretty obvious solution for taking care of disaster hair and, your options are endless. Be cheeky with a (Miami) Hurricanes hat like this one or perhaps something fancy, schmancy to distract from the hot mess, a fascinator like this one. 

Maybe I need this “I Survived Hurricane Irma” ball cap or this “Florida Strong Hurricane Irma” cap
One of my go-to’s is a cadet hat from Montauk Tackle. 

Tame Disaster Hair with a Combat Shower
How little water do you need to clean yourself in a shower? I managed to clean up with a gallon of water (water I had in my hurricane preparation kit which was from the tap in preparation of the storm.) My tactic was to use minimal water to lather up starting with pouring it over my head then letting it trickle down the rest of my body. After lathered up, I dumped the remaining water over my head and let it rinse off all the suds.

Was the combat shower thing ideal? Heck no! But without any running water, it was the best I could do with what I had. Mind you, this was done in the partial darkness, too, since I did not have any power.

I’m thinking of getting a solar, camp shower like this to keep on hand for next time. Gosh. I hope there isn’t a next time but better to be prepared.

Sidebar: Rain water would work, too. I placed a bucket under my gutter pipe to collect rain water which I used to flush my toilet.

Can’t Lather Up? No Worries. Sprinkle or Spray Dry Shampoo for Presentable, Clean Hair
Dry shampoo is one of the best things invented for a gal and my preference is a powder dry shampoo. It’s terrific for traveling with because it does not need to fit in that clear, quart-sized bag and lasts a long time. When I need to freshen up my locks, I sprinkle it onto my roots or pour a little in my hands then rub it into my scalp. It really perks up my curls and adds a little texture. In a pinch, it’s also versatile enough to use as a body powder when you need that fresh feeling.

A powder dry shampoo I adore is called Alterna Bamboo Beach Mango Coconut Refreshing Dry Shampoo. It’s a little pricy but it’s worth it because of how long it lasts.

Another dry shampoo I use is Not Your Mother’s Beach Babe Texturizing Dry Shampoo. It comes in a spray can so it does need to fit in that plastic quart bag. When I need to poof up my mane, like the powder dry shampoo, I spritz on the roots.

Not sure which dry shampoo is the right one for you? There’s a website for that called Reviews.com. They have done the research and have dry shampoo reviews to determine which one is best.

Sneak Into a Friend’s Home to Use The Shower
Okay, I did not need sneak into a friend’s home. After posting a, uh, “emotional” Facebook post about my frustrations over the situation of being without power and water, dear friends stepped up and offered me an air conditioned place to stay with my rescue dog and cats.

Ironically, the night I gave in to spending the night at a friend’s place, my power had been restored but I was without water (something about priming the pump and a little electrical hiccup).

Give In, Spend the Money and See Your Hairstylist
“You look exhausted,” my hairstylist said when she greeted me days following Hurricane Irma.

Great. Even though I was beyond mentally exhausted, I thought I was doing a good job of hiding it and keeping it all in. Guess not.

As usual, she worked her magic with a color, shampoo, cut and style and returned me to humanity. Not only is my hairstylist a pro in making me feel pretty, she’s better – and cheaper – than talking to a psychologist.

Make a Difference in Relief Efforts
In seriousness, I recognize there are many people surviving following unimaginable disasters. What I went through with Hurricane Irma was an inconvenience but nothing to the devastation others have experienced. If you can, find an organization to support relief efforts. Two I trust are Clean the World and the American Red Cross. If you can’t financially give, consider volunteering or donating blood. Whatever you can do is appreciated.

Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links in order to support this blog, my traveling habit and my special-needs dog.



Jennifer A. Huber is an award-winning travel and outdoor blogger and writer in Southwest Florida. Originally from Buffalo, N.Y., a hiking trail led her to a career path in the tourism industry for more than 30 years. She spent a decade with a park management company in Yellowstone, Death Valley, and Everglades National Parks. She founded the travel blog, SoloTravelGirl.com with the goal of inspiring others to travel alone, not lonely. The unexpected death of her former husband in 2008 reminded her how short life is. His passing was a catalyst for sharing her experiences with the goal of inspiring and empowering others to travel solo. Jennifer holds a Travel Marketing Professional certification from the Southeast Tourism Society, is a certified food judge, member of the NASA Social community, and alum of the FBI Citizens Academy. When not traveling, she is either in the kitchen, practicing her photography skills, or road tripping with her dog, Radcliff.

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