Hairstyles, Hair Care & Fashion

Helix Hair Cut

Q: I had a Helix hair cut many years ago. I can't find anything on your website about them now. I have had 2 perms within 5 weeks, and the 2nd one turned out poorly also! I was wondering if a Helix cut would give me a little volume and bounce until my hair can get healthy again. My hair is a little above my shoulders and is fine, blonde hair.
Helix Hair Academy A: The "Helix Cut" you mention is a haircutting technique that uses "specially designed" scissors and a gathering/twisting technique to create specialized layering and texturing in the hair. The system was created by Carole Lyden Smith who teaches in her own school in Eastern Tennessee. You can view their website at
The Helix cut is meant to enhance the natural wave of the hair and the site makes some pretty significant claims. There are many who swear by the helix cut, and the company's site features testimonials interspersed all through its pages. I also found forums on other sites which were less impressed.
I've never witnessed the Helix process personally so I will reserve my personal and professional judgements, but to address your specific issue regarding the perms which failed, there are multiple possible causes, including operator error, the wrong perm formula used, and the possibility that your hair is sufficiently damaged that it no longer takes a curl well.
A good haircut can help with a multitude of situations, including reviving a perm (since a trimming of the hair both removes dead ends and excess weight leaving the hair lighter, springier and looking healthier) but you need to have a stylist give your hair a thorough evaluation and test for the porosity and elasticity to make sure the hair is healthy enough to take a perm.
If you think it is a matter of hair health, then I highly recommend giving your hair a break. Try the gentler methods of styling, or talk to your stylist about having a new cut and work on a game plan to restore and revitalize your hair. In some cases the solution is waiting for the damaged hair to grow out, but you can always work on getting the best results and take the changes you need to undertake in stages.
Related posts:
Perms Questions and Asnwers
A guide to permanent waves
How to cut hair