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Hair Perming > Perms

On these pages you can read about the most important issues that you, as a client, should know. I don't think anyone should even try to perm or relax her/his hair at home. Chemicals are very dangerous to handle at home all by yourself. Someone experienced should do this process for you.

My advice: It is not worth it.



Is a chemical process where the hair must be first wrapped around the rods and only then saturated with chemical solution and processed. First chemical solution breaks the bonds inside the hair, shapes them according to the shape of a rod that is being used. After hair takes the curl formation, it should get very well rinsed. Second chemical solution called "Neutralizer" gets applied thus making the hair retain their curl after drying. Because it requires use of chemicals, which may contain lye, this whole procedure should not be performed at home. People who want to save themselves few dollars, can face blindness or overprocessing the hair, which could result in breakage (called chemical hair cut) and fall out.

Three different perm rod sizes that are used mainly for natural soft wave.

Types of chemical solutions:

Cold permanent:
  • ALKALINE - pH is 8.0 and up and has an ammonia content


Heat permanent:
  • NEUTRAL - pH is 7.0 - 7.9
  • ACID - pH is 4.5 - 6.5


Chemical solutions have several strengths:
  • Resistant hair formula (strongest)
  • Normal hair formula
  • Tinted hair formula
  • Highlighted hair formula
  • Damaged hair formula (weakest)


Wrapping and processing the hair
  • your stylist should wrap the hair around rods with a minimum tension
  • hair wrapped with stretching and tension will cause so called chemical haircut, which means that hair will break near the root area


Applying the solution and processing the hair
  • stylist should check scalp for any abrasions, perm solution could cause poisoning of a clients body through an open skin
  • stylist should drape a client very well to protect the skin and clothing from dripping solution
  • stylist should choose the right solution for the hair (virgin, colored, fine, highlighted etc.)
  • client's hair should be shampooed prior to wrapping
  • stylist should use wrapping paper to protect the hair ends
  • client should be protected with a cream and a strip of a cotton around the face against dripping of a solution
  • solution should be applied on the whole width of a wrapped rod
  • long hair wrapped rods should be fed with a solution (squeeze a little solution in a side hole of a rod)
  • hair should be checked every 5 minutes
  • colored hair takes about 10-15 minutes to process, stubborn (hard to process) takes about 20-25 minutes to take a curl
  • stylist should check several areas for a strong and firm letter "s" shape while testing a hair strand
  • hair should be all over very well rinsed (I usually rinse hair for 15 minutes to get all the processing solution out)
  • hair should be very gently towel dried, as any excess water would dilute the neutralizer down thus causing the perm to fall out
  • neutralizer should not be left on the hair longer than 8-10 minutes
  • hair should be rinsed very well again (stylist should smell the hair all over if there is any solution smell left in the hair)
  • hair should be shaped (or cut) after the perm, to remove any frizzy hair and shape it according to waves/curls


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