Varieties of Perms

Perm rods
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Q: I am a multi-racial female with the majority of my hair with the front and top naturally curly, and the sides and ends straighter. Now that I'm a senior, my hair is thinner. During hot weather, it really flattens out. I am short. I have a round face and a small head.
I look my best with a full head of hair with lots of volume styled with lots of volume at the front, top and back - which is getting harder and harder to achieve. I thought about having a body perm, but was warned that my hair would come out dry and either too curly or brittle. Is that true? Are there varieties of perms that would work for me?

A: Provided that your hair hasn't been processed using a hydroxide relaxer, and as long as you don't have damaged hair, you should be able to get your hair permed safely. There are numerous varieties of perm formulas available that are designed to work for all hair types, textures and densities.
While it is true that having the hair permed can leave it drier and more brittle, this becomes an issue more due to the condition of the hair prior to perming and the way in which the hair is cared for after being permed. If your intention is to get a body wave, then the tools used should preclude the possibility of your hair ending up "too curly".
If you aren't sure that your hair will properly withstand to a perm service, I strongly recommend that you visit your local salon and ask the stylist to do an evaluation of your hair in preparation for having it permed. A trained cosmetologist can determine whether or not your hair is in the right condition to withstand a perm and can advise you on the size of the perming tools you need to use.
See also:
How perms work
Perms and its toll on your hair
The different formulations for permanent waves