Should curly hair all be a length

With perm for curls

It's an unwritten rule: when it comes to hair, many people always want what they don't have. Brunette women really want to have blonde hair. And those with slick chive hair dream of a wild, curly mane or gentle beach waves. For the first, there is color and bleach, for the second, the perm. But what good is it?

A good perm actually makes the curly dream come true. You can read here whether the treatment is suitable for your hair, how exactly a perm works and how to properly care for your hair afterwards.

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How does a perm work?

No matter whether you want small curls or big waves, if you want the swing to last in your hair, you need a permanent wave. It always arises in 3 steps:

  1. First of all, the hair is rolled onto curlers while damp.
  2. Then a waving agent is applied. It breaks the sulfur bridges in hair that normally keep it stable. If these cross braces are missing, the hair becomes soft and malleable.
  3. Once the hair has bent into the shape of the curlers, a fixative is applied. It ensures that new sulfur bridges are made in order to permanently maintain the new artificial hair curvature.

Important: Fresh perms need to be handled very carefully. At first you should pull or pull your hair as little as possible, otherwise the waves quickly lose their bounce. Difficult cures and styling products should also be avoided in the first 2 weeks so that the curls do not hang out so quickly.

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Is there a gentle perm?

Professionals differentiate between alkaline and acidic perms. The names refer to the pH of the perm:

  • Acid permanent waves have a pH of 6 to 6.9. This has the advantage that the hair flakes do not open too much and the hair is comparatively little damaged. Acid permanent waves are particularly suitable for sensitive, fine and porous hair. Colored hair can also be permanently waved in this way.
  • The acid version is less suitable for hair that is difficult to wave, thick and straight hair. For this you need an alkaline or basic perm with a pH value of 7.1 to 9. However, such a perm is also a little more aggressive than an acidic one.

How harmful is a perm?

You have probably already figured it out: Even a much gentler acidic permanent wave is not a regenerating care treatment. Restructuring the bonds disrupts the integrity of the hair. There is a risk of hair breaking. Therefore, you shouldn't repeat this type of treatment too often.

If your hair is already heavily used, you should rather do without the perm. If the head is healthy and the perm is done correctly, you don't need to be afraid of completely destroyed hair. The curly mane will just feel a little drier than before - and now needs more intensive care.

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How do I care for permed hair?

It is important that you regularly supply your permed hair with moisture and conditioners. Shampoos and conditioners for damaged or curly hair protect your mane with vegetable oils or liquid hair components so that it does not become brittle and dull.

You should do an intensive hair treatment once a week. Important: If you have a fresh perm for at least a week, avoid coloring so as not to burden your hair and scalp twice. In the beginning, avoid styling and care products so that the hair does not become unnecessarily heavy and hang out.

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What determines whether I have small curls or big waves afterwards?

The strength of the waves or curls depends on the size of the curlers that are used for the perm. In general, the bigger the roll, the weaker the corrugation - and the lower the durability.

Since the hair has to be stretched tight for permanent reshaping, there are limits to the diameter of the curlers. Normally round perm curlers are between 0.3 and 2 cm thick. There are also spiral curlers for corkscrew curls and conical curlers for natural-looking waves.

Are perms also suitable for very long hair?

If your hair is longer than 12 inches, you shouldn't get a perm. The reason is simple: the weight of your hair is too great. The curls would hang out too quickly. So you'd be damaging your hair for free ...

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Does a perm also help tame very frizzy hair?

Sure, because the frizzy curl is twisted into a defined curl shape. You can even have a reverse perm done. The hair is treated with similar chemicals, but not twisted on curlers, but straightened.

But be careful: permanent straightening puts even more stress on the hair than a permanent wave, as the hair is stretched extremely hard when straightening. This makes them easy to tear and break.

What to do if the perm grows out

The fact that the perm grows out at some point can hardly be avoided. Then you have 3 options:

- You can simply cut off the permed part of the hair.

- Or you just let the perm grow out. Don't worry, your hair will hang out over time. So you don't have any curls for a smooth approach, but probably only light waves.

- Another possibility is a permanent wave: the hair that has already been permed is protected from the renewed perm with a rubber cap. Otherwise they would break off or split.

Is there a gentle alternative to permanent waves?

Of course. A good alternative to permanent waves are the good old curlers or papilots, i.e. hair curlers made of paper. Curl your hair for a few hours, preferably overnight. You can also braid your hair and sleep with it. The next morning just loosen the braid or the curlers, brush through once and your hair is already wavy.

If you want to go faster, you can use a curling iron. Devices with a ceramic coating, which distribute the heat evenly in the hair, are the most gentle on the hair. For light waves, you can also use a flat iron with rounded edges.

Are you annoyed about super-straight chive hair or an undefined frizzy? Stop it! With a perm, you can really get your smooth hair going. And don't be afraid of the '80s memory look: good hairdressers don't give you a mini-pin, but rather soft curls that you can easily let out.

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Uta K├Ânig, Philipp Wehsack