Viral Makeover Helps Homeless Man Find Sister Who Thought He Was Dead


For 10 years, João Coelho Guimarães’ family thought he was dead. Thanks to a viral photo of his recent makeover, a family is reunited.

For three years, João — who is 45 — lived on the streets. One day, he entered a barbershop looking for a way to trim his beard himself.

The employees asked if he wanted any food and he declined. They then offered to give him a full makeover instead.

He took them up on the offer.


The makeover took two hours and included a haircut, beard trim, wash up and some sleek duds for João. Clothes include three shirts, a pair of pants, a jacket and new shoes.


Bored Panda reached out to the barbershop owner to get more information on how one haircut can transform a life.

“We decided to help him because we saw the extreme need he had. We made friends with him over the past two months. And when he asked us for a razor, we welcomed him and gave him the full experience.”

The shop owner, Alessandro, said he uses his business to help people often.

“We have some social aid projects, and for us, it is very gratifying to be able to help people, whoever they are. In this time of the pandemic, many people lost loved ones and others were left with financial difficulties. A little help is always welcome in such a difficult time.”

When the makeover was complete, João was filled with gratitude and had tears in his eyes.


When it came to his story, the barbershop’s employees didn’t ask any questions. They just wanted to put their skills toward improving someone else’s life.

“I didn’t want to get into the question of why he left home. He must have his reasons, but our intention was just to give him a little dignity at that moment.”

Images of João’s incredible transformation circled the internet, gaining the attention of the people who are most important—his family.

His sister recognized him and the barbershop organized a get-together and João was reunited with her after 10 years.


The reunion was filled with emotion, with João’s sister offering her home to him. He said no.

“He said that on the streets, he feels free,” Alessandro said. “That’s why he didn’t want to go home.”

All images: @padoooficial


Written by Lindsay Patton