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Readers Respond: Have You Permed Your Hair?

Responses: 47


Whether the year was 1984 or more recently, tell me about your perm experiences! Would you get another perm or are your dreams of curl hair over for good? Did your stylist use a special perm technique that worked better for your hair? How did you care for your perm? What Was Your Experience?


Okay well I have longish curly wavy hair and I love it but I want pin curls! I love them and I wanted the perm but I am scared! I had my hair stripped 2 years ago and it is back to my natural with red highlights. I take very good care of my hair but I still want the pin curls...help!!!
—Guest Hillary :)

I love my hair permed..but hate it fried

I have TONS of super fine super strait hair. Even with a great cut it is hard to style because it won't hold a shape. i love the way it looks permed and I get great feedback from others. My advice be super careful who you go to. I tried to save a few bucks...OK 70 bucks by going to a different salon than I normally do. The perm looked cute but completely fried my hair. It has been 7 months since I received the perm and it has grown out too much for my liking but no reputable salon will re-perm it because it is too fried. Find out what type of chemicals and process the salon uses ahead of time and then make sure they are using it correctly. The bad perm was over applied, incorrectly applied and left on the hair too long. Don't be afraid to speak up if you think someone is butchering your hair.
—Guest dogladyjoolz

Know the process and comment if you must

I take good care of my hair, use good salon products and am VERY familiar with the process. I recently had a stylist that I was told had "years of experience doing perms" do my perm after I grew hair out for 7 mos. I watched the rolling, using grey rods and the wrap was fine. It's in the rinsing and the chemical application that you HAVE TO PAY ATTENTION!!! I didn't pay enough and am now headed back for my THIRD appt. for this one perm! It's in the chemical application and/or rinsing stages...she didn't catch the top rods well enough. NOTE: when the perm is done and the stylist keeps "scrunching" an area of your head~it came out too straight!! Perms look OK wet...but it dried at home w/the top JUST wavy. The rest was CURLY! One week later, partial to match the top to the bottom..chemicals dripped down ONE side of my head. Now straight section on 1 side! Can't wear it this way!! HAVE to re-do both sides so they match. My poor hair!! Am deep conditioning 1st and after! Be PROACTIV
—Guest Laura

Perms-love 'em!

I have long hair that looks bad when straight, so I perm it every couple of years. Idk why, but perms last over a year for me, so I totally get my money's worth. I like the white rods, with my length they offer a nice relaxed curl. Good luck!
—Guest Laura

My First and Worst Perm

I went to the same hair stylist my entire life. One Christmas while I was still in high school, I asked for a perm. I got one. The stylist thought she knew my hair, since she had always been the one to do it... but she didn't. She asked no questions about it. Turns out, I was young and naive and didn't know that you couldn't get a perm if you had bleached your hair AT ALL. So, this lead to a perm... and all my hair (literally) falling out. So, please use my experience as a warning: PLEASE DO NOT bleach your hair or over-dye it and try to get a perm. IT WON'T WORK. Furthermore, PAMPER your hair the month before you get a perm. Buy a hair mask or moisture-restoring oils and treat your hair at least twice a week. Since my horrible experience, (4 years later) I have pampered my hair and am trying to get a perm again next month. Fingers crossed!
—Guest Heather

perm/what a bloody mess

I have had lovely shoulder length blonde hair for 10 years now,coloured blonde. But I wanted a change..I wanted blonde curly hair. I had a consultation with the hairdressers, who said it was fine. she put the rollers in and perm solution on, but when she took them out my hair was stark white and all gluey and looked a mess,,,it looked awful,,she said that blonde colouring strips your hair and the only thing to put it right was too colour it darker,so she continued to do that,, I now have a head of frizzy dark grey looking hair, (the colour didn't take properly either), not a curl in sight, just a mess and it has really knocked my confidence, I have phoned in sick to work as I couldn't face them commenting,I now look like an old lady of 70,,I am a young 50, I truly made the biggest mistake of my life. Wish hair grew quick.. I am going to leave it a few days then have it done dark brown, and hope that with some treatments I can get some condition back into it. I just want to cry.
—Guest lynda

First "perm"

I put that perm in quotes for a reason... I've wanted big sexy curls for a very long time... I had very lifeless straight hair with I dye maybe twice a year... So I decided to get a perm. I explained to the stylist BIG...CURL...BODY! Not tight curls to make me look like Annie. So she used the purple and orange rods. Said that would give me big curls and more body. GREAT! after the processing and rinsing out... I now have what looks like crimped hair. It seriously looks like i braided my hair and slept in it overnight and took it out. I called my salon and asked them wtf happened. They claim that once I wash my hair Saturday morning my curls or lack there of will lift. I seriously doubt that. Im very upset. So Saturday the salon is going to wash my hair for the first time since the perm and give it a trim. If i dont have a curl I will be demanding a refund. This is not what I asked for.
—Guest Sharon

Perm Damage: Eek!!

Hi. I have had perms done to my hair my whole life-two a year since I was about ten years old-and every time they took beautifully!! All but the last one I had which didn't take on the ends. It didn't look like a perm..it looked more stringy and it was horrible! So I went back to my stylist the next day( I know..should have waited!!) and she doubled up on the perm so it would take. She's done my hair for 16 or more years so she knows what she's doing!! Anyway, about two months later it just went south and looked awful. So I went to my Aunts stylist and she told me my hair was damaged and very overprocessed. So I cut a bunch of the damage off and have decided to go straight for a change. You know..I actually like my hair straight! I've been researching on YouTube and have done some serious babying to my hair to get it back to the shape it is now. Now sometimes it gets frizzy but so far it's been all right. I'm gonna have to lay off the perms for a while.
—Guest Jennifer

My experiance

Ahhh, perms. Well, yes, I am now on my second spiral perm and I love it! I have naturally dark, straight, hair mid-back and perms work great for my hair. I think about anyone's hair can look great in a perm if you take care of it! Wash it with a shampoo made for chemically treated hair, comb with a wide tooth comb, No brushes!, and conditioining is the key here! Condition every day, especially after you wash it. Also do a deep condition once a week or so. (You can find them on Pinterest by searching "hair masks"). Mouse, scrunching gel, those are also important to keep your hair looking great! Enjoy your perm!
—Guest Kinsley

cant do without

I have shoulder lenght hair ,(lot of it) highlighted,,with some gray, have always permed my hair, as its neither straight nor wavy,,also I need height,I look terrible at the best of times, but when straight ugh !!!! I use home perm usually Velvet for colour, every 10--12 weeks, this old girl likes very curly curls,, I either set in rollers or If I want it straighter then I blow dry,,Good luck everyone,...
—Guest marifawr

Perms and Medications

I have always had nice hair, permed but in excellent condition and often commented on. The last two perms have been disasters: kinky hair but no "curl". I have been told tghis is because i am on high blood pressure tablets and statin. Is there anything i can do, please? Straight hair does not suit this old lady!

First perm ever

I have wanted to do this for a very long time but only recently did I actually have the guts to do. I went through a few stages at first I loved it then I hated it during the 48 hours I couldnt wash my hair then after washing and restyling it I loved IT!
—Guest Anna Banana


I have straight hair and a lot of it. The last hair perm I got was about 15 yrs ago. I looked like Freddie Fender!!! LOL My friends were so shocked that they had trouble making eye contact when they were talking to me. Their eyes kept going to my hair even though I could tell they were trying not to!

Should I be getting a perm?

My hair is very thick and it's just about passed my shoulders . I want to get a spiral perm , I've haven't had one before but I would like to try something new and fresh . My hair is healthy and is growing a whole lot . But here is where I run into a problem , It's only been about 3 months since I had a relaxer , I have a lot of new growth in my head I would say about 2-3 inches is it too soon to try and get a perm ? I've desperately been wanting one for a couple months now but I don't wanna get one too soon and then damage my hair . And also how long will it take to get a spiral perm ?
—Guest Nina Greene

I want a spiral perm to restore my curls

Hello, my name is Melanie and I am twenty one yrs old. I have naturally curly hair but as of now you can barely tell. I want to get a perm to take my curls from being wavy back to spiral curls. My hair is black\brown and thick it's to my bra strap. It's healthy for the most part I've had it cut to my shoulders in oct 2010 and have had regular trims & deep conditioners since. I had a keritain done to my hair eleven months ago and was upset because it took away most of my curls. I have since also done a few box colors because I love my hair a chocolate brown instead of black. Please help me decide what kind of perm is best for me. Every hair dresser I ask say no it will ruin my texture of my hair :(
—Guest Melanie

What Was Your Experience?

Have You Permed Your Hair?

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