Woman with permanent wave
Hair Styling | Permanent waves

We Like it Curly: The Comeback of the Perm

That's right, the good old perm from the eighties is back. How does it look today? Luckily, nothing like before! In 2018, the perm gets a beachy makeover – for the better. We reveal how the new perm looks, and who can wear it

Curly hair is hot in 2018! This is one of the reasons the perm is currently making a big comeback. A wild mane exudes boho flair and looks casual – perfect for uncomplicated, trendy spring styles. But how do you achieve a perm, how do you care for permed hair – and will it suit you? Find out below!

What perming does to the hair

A permanent wave won’t happen without chemicals. As the name suggests, a perm is a permanent transformation. During processing, certain bonds in the hair are broken and then fixed into their new, wavy form.

There are two options: The acid perm and the alkaline perm. In the former, the disulfide bonds in the hair are broken more gently, which in turn means that the treatment can take longer. An alkaline perm uses a chemical composition of a higher concentration.

In order to protect the hair even before perming takes place, there are special pre-care products that care for and protect the individual hair fibers, for example, with keratin and collagen. These days, perming liquid itself contains caring ingredients such as silk pigments that soften, moisturizing aloe vera or amino acids that care for the hair while it’s being processed.

Curls, waves, volume: Perms make it possible

Little ringlets or big waves – everything is possible with a perm. Even curly hair can be permed to create more defined curls. The only limits are when it comes to length: Hair longer than 12 inches is harder to work with, because the weight of the hair will drag the curls back out. When it comes to texture: Thicker hair is harder to perm. Fine hair is easier, gaining volume and fullness from a perm.

The perm is an all-rounder: depending on the technique and roller thickness, you can either create volume at the base, or curl your entire head of hair. In general, the larger the roller, the weaker – and less long-lasting – the curl.

Perm aftercare

Even with new, gentler perms, hair needs to be intensively cared for after perming. Special shampoos and conditioners for damaged or curly hair protect, so that hair does not become brittle and dull. Leave-in hair treatments are a handy fix and don’t need to be rinsed out.

Once a week, apply an intensive nourishing mask. Important: Wait at least a week after perming before coloring, to avoid damaging the hair and scalp.

Want curls now? Find out which hairstyles are suited to curly hair in our gallery: