Things you need to know about perms are the topic of today’s post and the reason I’m doing a post on curly perms is the fact that there are way too many important things to know about them and great tips for a perfect perm that deserve to be shared. Take a peek at these interesting things you need to know about perms before you decide to give this treatment a go.
1 Perms Are Back on Trend
Let's start off by saying that perms are coming back in a big way. But, don't worry. We aren't talking the big voluminous waves that were so popular in the 1980s. Millennial perms are softer, look more natural and are also less damaging. The perm has had a modern makeover, not only in style but also in the harshness of chemicals used. And for those of you who don't know or are unsure, you probably need to start with finding out what is a perm?
2 Undamaged Hair is the Best Base
One of the basic things you need to know about perms is that they won’t look very good if you don't have a good base to work on. According to the experts at there are 4 major perm red flags to consider. If your hair has sustained serious damage, or if it’s bleached or dried out, the curls won’t curl as much as frizz and the extra round of chemicals won’t help your hair look any healthier either! Furthermore, double processing might even cause your ends to turn so brittle that they’ll start falling off on their own! The solution? Consult a stylist before you decide to get your hair permed or do a home porosity test to see how well your hair would take a perm
3 It’s a Long-Term Investment
A good curly perm doesn’t come cheap, especially if you opt for a better quality product and spiral curls of different diameter to mimic a natural look. The good thing about it is that, if you know how to care properly for your perm, it can last up to six months which, you’ll agree, is absolutely fantastic. If your hair is wavy, you may discover that a perm looks good to go even after the 6 months maximum, in which case you should definitely ride that train to the last station before you sit in the chair asking for a redo. Girls with pin straight hair might not be so lucky, although their perms can look great for a good number of months too, if proper care is given to your hair.
4 It’s Not as Good to Go as They’d Have You Believe
Even the healthiest of hairs can appear a bit dry and frizzy after the chemical treatment, causing you to regret your decision and give up on your new hairstyle. Don’t despair just yet because I have a few tips for a perfect perm to share and I guarantee they make a difference. First of all, you should know that a perm isn’t as good to go as it looks on the first sight. It will save you the trouble of curling hair every time but requires a few changes in your hair care routine as well. You’ll need a curl shaping product like Garnier Curl Shaping Spray ($4.29 at garnierusa.com), a hair oil to help you get rid of any remaining frizz and you’ll also have to make sure your hair is properly moisturized. Dry hair means frizzy curls, remember that!
5 Lighten up!
Or don’t… but have in mind that your hair might! Chemicals used to curl hair might cause your tresses to go a shade up, all depending on the product used, your hair type and the processing time. Don’t freak out, it happens and the result is more of a sun-kissed look than a bleaching session gone wrong. Girls that dye their hair might experience a bigger problem, though, which is why I’d advise a consultation first. According to Sally Beauty, a perm shouldn't change your natural color. Voice out your concerns well in advance to give your stylist a chance to customize processing time or handpick a milder chemical cocktail for your hair.
6 Wash Carefully
Tip for a perfect perm number one – do not, and I repeat, do not wash your hair immediately after the perm! Not even the next day! Your new gorgeous curls will need anywhere from 24 to 36 hours to become permanent, so shampooing most definitely is not a good idea. You’re free to wash any way you’d like once this time has passed, although I’d advise you to use a mild shampoo for your first post-perm wash. Special formulas for perm-treated hair are available too and are something you should check out if your hair is straight and doesn’t hold a style very well. Try OGX Quenching + Coconut Curls Shampoo ($5.79 at target.com).
7 Air Drying is the Best for Perm-Treated Hair
The only way to have frizz-free, perfectly formed curls is to let your hair dry naturally without the help of a hair dryer. It’s not the best piece of news out there (especially since it is still winter) but hey, you’ll get used to it. Oh and just so you don’t say I carry nothing but bad news, here’s a handy tip to help you look fab even if you’re short on time. Wrap your hair into a towel, wait five minutes, unwrap, shake your hair, wrap again and wait another five. By doing this you’re making sure the most of the excess moisture is absorbed without the damaging, frizz-inducing rubbing. Choose a warm place to sit and wait until your hair is about 80 to 90 percent dry. You can bust out the hair dryer now and finish the job without the risk of your hair turning into a frizz ball! Need more tips for blow drying hair? check out sallybeauty.com
8 You Can Go Straight Whenever You Want
There’s another thing you need to know about perms and, this time, I’m bringing nothing but good news! You see, a lot of people seem to believe that getting a perm means you’re sacrificing every other texture but that, my ladies, is hardly the case. You can straighten permed hair, set it into rollers, do a heatless curl/beachy wave style and still get to keep the curls you’ve paid for. Simply wash your hair and they will be back! Thrifty Fun has a bunch of tips for straightening permed hair.
9 It Takes Time
A perm takes time to complete properly. Don't expect to be in and out of the salon in no time. Even with short hair, a perm can take at least two hours. Longer strands will take even more time to perm. Ask the salon how long to block out so you aren't taken by surprise when you're sitting in the chair.
10 It Doesn't Kick in Right Away
You aren't going to leave the salon with the finished product. Experts say that it can take a day or two for the full effect to show. So don't despair if you are unhappy with your perm. Give it a couple of days before you freak out. If you don't see what you want after that, call your stylist. There are some ways to fix a bad perm you can try for yourself at home
11 They Can Cause Damage
Keep in mind that a perm involves putting chemicals in your hair. You can expect some type of damage to your strands, which is worse the more often you have your hair permed. Follow your stylist's advice very closely when you care for your perm to help keep the damage to a minimum. Try to take a break between perms and use hair masks when you can to give your hair some time to restore and get healthy again. And remember, there are so many fabulous styles for permed hair you can try.
Well, I hope you’ve enjoyed these tips for a perfect perm, ladies! It's definitely key to consider all the the pros and cons of getting a perm because it is a serious commitment.
Do jump in to share a few of your own tips, of course! And if there’s a product you find absolutely perfect for perm-treated hair, I definitely want to hear all about it!
This article written in collaboration with editor, Eliza Martinez