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Asian Hair Perming: the Korean Perm Trend, Prep, and Care (2024)

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how to perm asian hairDid you know that digital Korean perms are on the rise as a top hair trend?

This style of perming creates relaxed waves and loose curls that look effortless and glamorous.

If you are looking to achieve this look, you’ll need to select the right perm solution, rod size, and post-perm care routine.

Keep reading to learn more about how to perm Asian hair the Korean way.

Key Takeaways

  • Korean perms offer relaxed waves and loose curls, focusing on natural results and low maintenance.
  • Asian perming techniques prioritize hair health, using different perm solutions, rod sizes, and styling methods.
  • Perms have been popular in Asian countries for decades, gaining momentum due to celebrity endorsements and social media.
  • Extra care is needed when perming Asian hair to protect it from damage, including heat protectant spray, hydrating shampoos and conditioners, and minimizing heat exposure.

What is Asian Perming?

What is Asian Perming
You’ve likely seen Asian perming trends, from the textured waves of Korean perms to the loose curls of Japanese digital perms.

These styles have become increasingly popular, thanks to their natural-looking results and low-maintenance upkeep.

But what exactly is Asian perming, and how does it differ from traditional Western perms?

Asian perming techniques have evolved over decades, influenced by cultural preferences for natural-looking texture and styling versatility.

Korean perms, in particular, have gained popularity due to their ability to create soft, beachy waves that are easy to style and maintain.

This trend has been further amplified by celebrity endorsements and the rise of Korean pop culture.

Unlike traditional Western perms that often result in tight, bouncy curls, Asian perming techniques focus on creating looser, more natural-looking waves.

This is achieved through the use of different perm solutions, rod sizes, and styling techniques.

Additionally, Asian perming places a strong emphasis on hair health, with pre- and post-perm treatments designed to minimize damage and maintain the integrity of the hair.

Korean Perm: the It Style

Korean Perm: the It Style
The It Style in the world of Korean perms has taken the hair industry by storm.

With celebrity endorsements from popular figures like Jung Ho-Yeon, it’s no wonder that this trend has become a must-have for many.

The Korean perm offers a unique and natural-looking wave pattern that sets it apart from traditional perms.

Styling techniques play an essential role in achieving these coveted waves, with experts using methods such as twisting blow-drying to create bouncy curls full of body and volume.

However, it’s important to note that while the Korean perm delivers stunning results, heat vulnerability is something to keep in mind.

The process can make your hair more susceptible to damage and dryness when exposed to heat styling tools like curling irons or straighteners.

To ensure maximum longevity of your perm, proper care is crucial.

Using products specifically formulated for permed hair can help maintain its structure and prevent premature fading or loss of curl definition.

Consider incorporating hydrating treatments into your routine regularly; products like HYDR-8 Deep Moisture Repair Mask come highly recommended for added hydration and nourishment.

By following these tips alongside expert guidance at a reputable Korean salon specializing in digital perms or other variations, you’ll be well on your way to rocking the It Style with confidence.

Asian Perm Trends
In Asian countries, perms have been a popular way to achieve beachy waves for decades. The trend has only grown in recent years, thanks in part to celebrity endorsements and the rise of social media.

Texture Evolution:

Asian perms have evolved from the tight, spiral curls of the past to the more natural-looking waves of today. This is due in part to the development of new perming techniques, such as the digital perm, which uses heat to create a more natural-looking curl.

Global Perm Trends:

The Korean perm trend is just one example of the growing popularity of perms around the world. In recent years, there’s been a resurgence of interest in perms, as people look for ways to add texture and volume to their hair.

Celebrity Endorsements:

Celebrity endorsements have played a major role in the popularity of the Korean perm trend. Actresses like Jung Ho-yeon, known for her role in Squid Game, have been seen sporting the look, which has helped to make it more mainstream.

Styling Innovations:

The Korean perm trend has also been fueled by the development of new styling techniques. For example, the twisting blow-dry technique is a popular way to achieve the bouncy, voluminous curls that are characteristic of the Korean perm.

Cultural Influences:

The Korean perm trend is also a reflection of the growing influence of Korean culture on global fashion and beauty trends. In recent years, there’s been a growing interest in Korean pop culture, which has led to a greater awareness of Korean beauty trends, including the Korean perm.

Perming Asian Hair

Perming Asian Hair
When perming Asian hair, extra care is needed to protect it from damage.

Heat perming, popularized by Korean celebrities, uses specialized rods and techniques to create natural-looking waves.

Consult a professional to assess your hair’s suitability, as bleached or chemically treated hair may not be ideal.

Heat perms, like the digital perm, employ heat to minimize damage and achieve softer, more natural curls.

Styling techniques like the twisting blow-dry add volume and bounce to the perm.

Regular trims and proper maintenance are crucial to keep your perm healthy and prevent split ends.

Celebrity endorsements, particularly from Korean stars, have fueled the popularity of Korean perms.

These perms offer a modern, chic look with lower maintenance compared to traditional perms.

To maintain your perm, avoid harsh shampoos, use heat protectants, and regularly condition your hair.

The Korean perm trend draws inspiration from historical influences, blending elements of the hippie perm and Japanese magic perm.

It caters to those seeking a natural, beachy look with minimal effort.

With proper care and maintenance, you can enjoy your Korean perm for months.

Selecting a Perm Solution

Selecting a Perm Solution
When picking a perm solution:

  • Choose an alkaline-based lotion with normal strength to ensure the perm lasts.
  • Choose a rod size smaller than your desired curl size, as perms relax over time.

Finally, avoid using a round brush blow-dryer on newly permed hair, as this can damage the curls.

Alkaline Lotion Selection

Let’s dive into selecting the right alkaline lotion to suit your hair’s needs and desired curl pattern.

Consider the pH level, as Asian hair responds well to lotions with a normal pH.

Avoid acid-based formulas, which may not yield optimal results.

Choose a ‘Normal’ strength lotion unless your hair has been lightened.

Opt for formulations that prevent early relaxation to ensure long-lasting curls.

Rod Size and Durability

Curl Size Selection:

  • Opt for a smaller rod to achieve tighter, longer-lasting curls.

    Rod Size Techniques:

  • Use a variety of rod sizes to create natural-looking waves and curls.

    Longevity Tips:

  • Smaller rods help maintain curl definition and prevent premature relaxation.

    Tension Control:

  • Apply even tension during winding to prevent breakage and ensure uniform curls.

Post-Perm Care Routine

To protect your perm from heat styling damage, you’ll need a heat protectant spray.

Maintain moisture balance with hydrating shampoos and conditioners.

Embrace styling techniques that minimize heat exposure.

Protein treatments can fortify hair, boosting its resilience.

Follow these longevity tips to extend your perm’s lifespan and enjoy your new Korean perm with confidence.

Rod Size and Curl Maintenance

Rod Size and Curl Maintenance

When selecting the rod size, choose one that’s approximately two sizes smaller than your desired curl size. This ensures the curls hold their shape and don’t relax too much over time.

Curl Longevity:

  • Smaller rods create tighter curls that last longer, while larger rods produce looser curls that relax more quickly.

    Tension Effects:

  • Applying the right amount of tension when winding the hair around the rods is crucial.
  • Weak tension can result in loose, undefined curls, while excessive tension can cause breakage.

    Rod Selection:

  • Opt for rods made of high-quality materials that won’t damage the hair.
  • Ceramic or plastic rods are commonly used for Korean perms.

    Korean Perm Trend:

  • The Korean perm trend emphasizes natural-looking waves and curls, achieved through careful rod selection and technique.

With the right rod size and proper tension, you can achieve beautiful, long-lasting curls that enhance your natural beauty and reflect the latest Korean perm trend.

Preparation and Detoxification

Preparation and Detoxification
Now that you understand the importance of selecting the right rod size for your perm and how to maintain those beautiful curls, let’s move on to an equally crucial step in achieving a successful Asian hair perm: preparation and detoxification.

Before subjecting your locks to chemical processing, it’s vital to ensure they’re thoroughly cleansed and free from any product buildup. Detox shampooing plays a significant role in preparing your hair for the perming process by effectively removing impurities, excess oils, and styling products that can hinder optimal curl formation.

Additionally, using an appropriate pre-perm or detoxifying shampoo before getting a Korean perm helps prevent unpleasant odors during the treatment. Blotting your hair with a kitchen towel after washing can further minimize any potential lingering scent.

Effective cleansing not only sets the foundation for chemical processing but also aids in achieving long-lasting results with improved curl retention.

Rinsing and Neutralizing

Rinsing and Neutralizing
Rinsing the waving lotion thoroughly and blotting the rods in between keeps the hair from overprocessing.

This step is crucial in achieving a successful perm and ensuring that your hair remains healthy and beautiful.

Here are three important things to know about rinsing and neutralizing during the perming process:

  1. Rinsing techniques:

    It’s essential to rinse out all traces of waving lotion from your hair.

    A thorough rinse helps remove any remaining chemical residue, reducing the risk of overprocessing or damage.

  2. Neutralizing effectiveness:

    After rinsing, it’s time for neutralization, which restores pH balance to your hair strands by reforming bonds broken during perming.

    Applying neutralizer on wet hair dilutes its effectiveness, so make sure your hair is dry before proceeding with this step.

  3. Oxidation time:

    Before applying neutralizer, allow enough time for oxidation to occur within your strands – usually at least 30 minutes after rinsing – as moisture needs to evaporate for bonds to reform effectively.

Properly following these steps will ensure that you achieve long-lasting waves without compromising overall hair health.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

How do I know if my hair is suitable for a perm?

To ascertain your hair’s suitability for a perm, consult a professional stylist.

They’ll assess factors like hair health, texture, and past treatments.

They’ll determine if a perm will enhance or compromise your crowning glory.

What are the different types of perms available for Asian hair?

With the myriad of perms available, how do you choose the one that suits your Asian hair’s unique needs?

From traditional cold perms to modern digital or body perms, each technique offers distinct results and maintenance requirements.

Explore your options and embrace the perm that empowers your hair’s natural beauty.

How can I maintain my perm to ensure it lasts longer?

Unlock the secret to lasting perms:

Embrace proper aftercare rituals.

Use curl-specific shampoos, conditioners, and masks to nourish and define your waves.

Regular trims are essential to eliminate split ends and maintain curl health.

Are there any natural or homemade alternatives to perming Asian hair?

While natural or homemade alternatives for perming Asian hair may be desired, it’s important to understand that achieving the desired results without professional intervention can be challenging due to unique hair characteristics.

Achieving the desired results without professional intervention can be challenging due to unique hair characteristics.

What are some tips for styling Asian hair after a perm to achieve the desired look?

Craft beachy waves with setting rollers, then blow-dry and brush for a voluminous, polished look.

Embrace the perm’s vulnerability and pamper it with protein-rich care, shielding it from heat’s damaging grasp.


Once the tedious process of Korean perms is understood, achieving the style is attainable.

The key to crafting beautiful waves and curls is understanding the science behind the process.

When you arm yourself with knowledge of the perm solution, rod size, and post-perm care routine, you can confidently embark on your journey to Korean perming, transforming your Asian hair into a cascade of effortless, glamorous curls.

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Mutasim Sweileh

Mutasim is a published author and software engineer and beard care expert from the US. To date, he has helped thousands of men make their beards look better and get fatter. His work has been mentioned in countless notable publications on men's care and style and has been cited in Seeker, Wikihow, GQ, TED, and Buzzfeed.