Perms and Hair Colouring

Perming hair with perm rods
Q: I've recently coloured my hair, and I love it, but I'm thinking of getting a permanent wave to add more body to my hairstyle. Is this going to be a problem? How long should I wait?
A: Today's permanent waving products have special formulas available for use on colour-treated hair. These products are designed to minimize problems for people with tinted or coloured hair, but you can expect some lightening to occur. Also, if your hair has low porosity, you will likely find that a stronger perming formula is needed, and the stronger the perm, the more lightening can (and likely will) occur.
Ideally, you want to perm your hair before you colour it, and you'll want to wait between chemical processes in order to let your hair return to a more normalized balance and condition. Two weeks is usually sufficient.
However, in the case of pre-colored hair and potential lightening, it's always possible to "boost" the colour once again after you've gotten your perm. Talk to your stylist and ask about getting a colour refresh - like a conditioning tint or soap cap - to add back what the perm took away.
Photo: Ball Lunla/Shutterstock
See also:
How often can I perm my colored hair?
How to make hair color last longer