Is a Perm Right For You?
Perms have come a long way in the past few decades – today, they can be fine-tuned to give you whatever kind of wave you desire, from loose, sexy waves to the corkscrew curls coveted by many bone-straight-haired girls. However, some people are better candidates for perms than others. Consider the following questions and “rules to live by” when considering whether or not a perm is a good idea for your hair.
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1) Who should get a perm?
Perms work best on thick hair that has not been color treated. If you’re not sure if your hair is perm-ready, consult with your stylist – tell him or her about your hair coloring history for the past few years. An easy and quick way to see if your hair is damaged is the “float test” – take a few strands and place them in a glass of water. If they sink, it’s because your hair is damaged and is soaking up moisture. If they float, your hair is healthy and most likely would perm well – but keep in mind that perms damage hair as well.
2) How long does a perm take?
One to two hours, depending on hair length and stylist technique. Consider that a perm takes about 28 hours on average to settle, so don’t worry about the end result right away.
3) How long does a perm last?
Generally about two to six months.
4) Where do I find a great stylist?
At The Salon 16 West, of course!
5) Should I bring pictures of what I want?
Of course. This is the easiest way for the stylist to understand – and deliver – what you want. Otherwise, you may well wind up with super-tight ringlets, whether or not that’s what you want.
6) A sit-down consultation beforehand is a must.
It’s always best to make sure your stylist knows exactly what you’re looking for in a perm – they are big investments, after all. Be sure to bring your pictures and make sure you also explain what you don’t want (such as a crimp-like “80s perm”).
7) The tightness of the curl depends on the size of the rods used.
If you’re concerned about getting curls that are too tight, ask your stylist to show you the rods he or she is using. Rod size and how long perm solution is kept in determine the tightness or looseness of the curl.
8) Some hair types are harder to perm than others.
If you are of Asian or African descent, then you will probably want to consult with a stylist who specializes in perming your specific hair type.
9) You can prep your hair before a perm.
Use a moisturizing conditioner after you shampoo the night before getting a perm. Avoid using a deep conditioner 24 hours before a perm (otherwise, the curl may not take).