How many times have you wondered what it would be like to be carefree and have low maintenance hair? You comb the pages of the latest black hair care magazines looking for African American hair dos and see others going the curly perm route. If you are stressed out and would rather concentrate on living life to the fullest instead of being in your hair salon every week, the curly perm may be the choice for you.
If you decide to go with a curly perm, you should be prepared for the following:
State of Hair: The act of putting chemicals in your hair to achieve the long-lasting curls of a curly perm involves using chemicals that some black hair experts say are harsh to the hair (but not as harsh as chemical relaxers). Let’s face it, you are dealing with harsh chemicals either way, and if you do not have someone who is experienced with putting in these chemicals, you are headed for disaster.
Maintenance: Hair that has a curly perm in it (i.e. Wave Nouveau) is great because it is low maintenance. When you get the perm and the chemical is applied, the hair shaft is broken down (straightened) and re-curled onto rods. The new curl pattern that is established is so strong that your hair remembers this pattern for 2 to 3 months which means you don’t have to curl your hair. Next, you buy the moisturizing products, apply them twice daily, and you’re free to go about your business. As far as washing, I wash my curly perm once a week with a good color-retaining moisturizing shampoo. With a curly perm, there is no need to sit around twisting or braiding the hair nightly as the perm causes your hair to remember its curl pattern.
Products and Procedures: Applying the products is quite easy. All you do is apply the moisturizers twice daily and you’re ready to go. Do not comb the hair much or this will rip out your hair.
Availability: Finding someone to put your Wave Nouveau in can be challenging, but there are reputable salons out there who offer this perm.
Cost: The perm itself ranges from $90 to $120; however, the daily maintenance products for the Wave Nouveau perm are very reasonable. If you go to Sally’s Beauty Supply Store, you should be able to stock up on all you need to maintain your perm from moisturizing lotion, to daily humectant and spray.
Convenience: If you are in a high humidity situation, get caught in the rain or go swimming, all you have to do is apply extra doses of the moisturizing product, and the slight frizz you have will turn right back into the lush soft curls you had before. You will also spend less time in the salon and more time with family and friends.
Whichever way you choose, be sure you consider all of the pros and cons. Like I said before, I proudly wear a curly perm that is low maintenance and works out perfectly for me as I am at a busy time in my life. Perhaps when my children grow up and move out of the house, I will go natural as I will have more time on my hands to maintain my hair in a long chemical-free style.