How to Perm Curl the Roots of Hair

hair style image by Mat Hayward from

Most people think of big, bouncy curls when they hear the word "perm," but there are actually different types of perms. Not only can you get different types of curls, from loose curls to tiny tight ones, but you can also straighten curly hair or perm just a single section of your hair. A "root perm" is when only the roots are permed to give volume and bounce to flat, lifeless, hair. You can perm your roots at home as easily as a stylist could at a salon.

Wash your hair with shampoo and conditioner. Use a towel to gently blot it dry--rubbing hair vigorously actually causes breakage, particularly in curly hair.

Comb your hair until it is free of tangles. If your style has a part, make sure it is exactly where you want it.

Separate your hair into four sections. Wrap the roots (the 2 to 4 inches closest to the scalp) tightly around the rods included in the home perm kit.

Mix the ingredients in the perm kit, following the manufacturer's instructions.

Apply the perming lotion to the roots wrapped around the rods. Make sure it is applied evenly.

Put on the cap and wait the indicated amount of time. A kitchen timer is helpful.

Remove the cap and rinse your hair with warm water, leaving the rods in place.

Apply the neutralizer to the roots. Let it sit for 8 minutes.

Rinse your hair, this time with cool water. Unwrap your roots from the rods and dry your hair with the towel.