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Types of Perm Looks

When most people think of a perm, they don’t realize how many types of perm looks there really are. Perms can be formal, fun, flirty, or functional depending on the style.


What Is a Perm?

Perms, or permanent waves, are a type of chemically altered hair style that uses harsh treatments to remake hair structure into desired curls. Many women desire curly hair but aren’t naturally endowed with luscious ringlets; a perm can help them achieve just the look they want. At the same time, perms are far less predictable and monotonous than many people assume when they first envision this type of hair style.

Different Types of Perm Looks

During the mid-1980s, the word "perm" conjured up images of tight to the head, uniform curls and no other wavy or individualized styles. Even today, many people associate perms only with mature women, never imagining that there are many different perms to suit every hair style and occasion. Different perm hair styles include:
Classic tight curls that are very easy to style and care for.
Long hair spiral perms with uniform ringlets around the entire head.
Gentle waves giving hair form and body but without creating actual curls.
Classic "Grandma" Perm

Casual kinks that are crafted throughout the hair without actually forming circular curls.
Partial spiral perms that leave the scalp straight but add curl and flair to the ends of long or medium length hair.
Root perms that add long-lasting body and lift near the scalp without curling the rest of the hair.
Spot perms that focus on specific areas of hair such as adding a flip curl to the ends or curling tendrils around the face.
Stack perms using different roller or perm rod sizes to create the illusion of layered hair styles without cutting the hair.
Inverse or straightening perms that diffuse natural curls.
With all of these types of perm looks available, it is easy to find the right perm style for any hair length, color, and texture.

How Different Perm Styles are Created

When many people first learn about the different perms available, they are startled and uncertain about how these looks can be created. In fact, an experienced hair stylist can create a different type of perm based on how they apply the chemicals to the hair during the perming treatment. Using different sizes of rollers or perm rods will create curls of different tightness, from very tiny, compact curls to loose, flowing waves. Similarly, if a large amount of hair is placed around a single roller, the curl will be looser because the chemical solution is not as strong on each piece of hair.
Finally, a stylist can adjust the degree of curl by changing the amount of time the chemical solutions are left on the hair – shorter perming time leads to looser curls. Interested individuals should note, however, that adjusting the length of time the perming solution has to set will also adjust how long the curl lasts overall, which may make more frequent treatments necessary.

Perm Rods

Perm rods are color coded, and the smaller the rod, the tighter the curl.
Small Rods
Red Rods: The smallest rods that produce the tightest perm. These are typically used in hair that less than three inches.
Blue Rods: Slightly larger than the red rods, these give a tight, controlled curl to hair under four inches.
Pink Rods: Pink perm rods create curl for hair about four inches in length.
Medium and Large Rods
Gray Rods: One of the most popular types of rods, stylists typically use these on hair ranging from three to five inches in length.
White Rods: These rods produce controlled curls on hair between four and six inches, rod body on shorter hair lengths.
Purple Rods: These larger rods are used for creating body waves, and are often used on hair that is shoulder length or longer.
Spiral Rods
Spiral perms use a specialty spiral perm rod to create delicate corkscrew spiral curls.

Creating Your Own Perm



Medium Tight Perm

The best types of perm looks are those that work for you based on the style you want to achieve. Bringing pictures to your stylist and describing what type of look you want are the keys to a great perm; without good communication, you may end up with a type of perm far different from what you desire. In some cases, the stylist may recommend against a perm entirely – if you want wavy hair, for example, you may be able to achieve that look without the harsh perm treatment just by using a large curling iron and the appropriate hair products. There may be many different perm looks, but a perm isn’t necessarily the best choice for everyone who wants body and curl in their hair.

Wearing Your Best Perm

A great perm can be worn in many different ways. Because the hair has been chemically altered, it can withstand other styles such as ponytails and updos quite easily, but take great care when the perm is wet – wet hair is very fragile, particularly when it has been subjected to the high chemical stresses of perms, coloring, or heat treatments. At the same time, do not be afraid to add hair accessories to any type of perm, and experiment with different perm looks for your best personalized results.
From LoveToKnow Hair


   
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