Wavy Perm Hairstyles

by Natalie Baker ; Updated September 28, 2017

Loose waves, ringlets and volume can be achieved by perming.

curly hair image by nutech21 from Fotolia.com

Modern perming techniques have moved on from the old-fashion “tight poodle curls” look. Thanks to newer product technology, the chemicals used to perm are no longer as harsh, and are less damaging to hair. A perm does not have to be only a full head of curls, but a combination of fuller-bodied roots or loose wavy ends. Although perming is less damaging than it used to be, those with heavily colored or lightened hair should avoid perming. Many perms typically last up to eight weeks, so maintenance visits to the salon may be necessary.

Body waves

For women who have limp, lifeless hair that lacks fullness and shape, a body wave perm will give you more ”oomph.” A body wave perm uses large rollers to achieve a style that has more volume and shape, rather than curls. This type of perm can relax the hair and, therefore, combat frizz. Several weeks before having a body wave perm, use a deep conditioning treatment once a week so your hair is in its best possible condition. Using specially-formulated shampoos and conditioners for permed hair will prolong your full-bodied style.

Loose waves

If you like to wear your hair in loose natural waves, or your hair is poker straight, a loose wave perm will bring your hair to life. Rather than tight ringlets, this perm gives you looser, natural waves because the rollers used are larger. Hair can be spot-permed in random sections for a more natural look, or permed at the ends for a slightly wavy effect.


A curly perm will give you a similar effect to using curlers every day. You may think of super-tight curls when you think about a curly perm, but you can actually achieve a range of different curls with different-sized rollers. Using a variety of sizes will make the look appear more natural. Larger rollers around the crown and front sections will give your hair more volume and frame your face.

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About the Author

Based in Manchester, U.K., Natalie Baker has been a freelance beauty and fashion writer since 2009. Her work appears in the beauty pages of "The Detour Magazine" and online at Just Makeup Artists. Baker is experienced in both television and print journalism, and holds a Bachelor of Arts broadcast journalism from Salford University.