Asian Hair Perm – How To and Tips 

Asian hair is usually thin and straight. If you are looking for a way to add volume and make it more stylish, consider getting a perm. While different types are available, our focus is on Asian hair perm in this short guide. 

Asian hair perm is a hairstyle you can do using heated electric rods. It has been a popular trend in Korea, Japan, and Singapore, among other Asian countries. It gives the hair soft and delicate curls to add volume. 

Read on to learn more about Asian hair perm, including what it is, how it is done, and some tips for its maintenance. 

What Is an Asian Hair Perm?

asian hair perm

Also Popular as Digital Perm

Also called a digital perm, the Asian perm is a hairstyle taking over Asia, especially in Korea, Japan, and Singapore. It is popular in such countries that each has its respective version of a hair perm. 

Treatment That Makes Your Hair Shiny and Bouncy

In a nutshell, an Asian hair perm is a treatment that makes your hair shiny and bouncy. It relies on temperature-controlled rods with a digital display and is powered by a built-in machine.

Asian Hair Perm Process

The process initially involves breaking down the molecules in the hair and eventually rebuilding them to take the shape of the rod. Although, some treatments do not require a heat-producing machine and rely on rollers and a special solution instead.

Looking at the overall process, Asian men’s perm hair and Asian women’s perm hair are the same. They go through the same steps.

Perming Women’s Hair Takes More Time

The main difference is that perming women’s hair might require more time since they are traditionally longer. Perm in men’s and women’s hair can be of different styles, including those we’ll talk about below. 

Asian Male Perm Hair

For guys who are thinking of getting a perm, below are some of the styles that are worth considering: 

1. Short Hair Perm 

If you are not yet ready to let go of your hair and have a radical style change, you can keep it low-key with a short hair perm.

This is ideal for men who only have three to four inches of mane but want to add volume and style. It has loose and soft wavy perms, which are great for those who do not like a hairstyle that requires heavy maintenance. 

2. Curly Undercut 

This perm is a good pick for men who already have an undercut. It features clean and shaved sides, while the top is curly and slightly messy. You can also go for a fade on the side if you want a cleaner look. 

3. Korean Wave Perm 

Fans of Korean popstars will surely recognize this style. This will have soft, wavy, and textured streaks. Some people choose to have an undercut to go with this hairstyle, which will add swag to your looks. 

Asian Female Perm Hair

For the ladies, change your mane and make it livelier through various perm styles., including the following: 

1. Korean S-Curl Perm 

The name alone should already give you an idea of what it would look like. It has S-shaped swirls, resulting in the hair whirling in different directions. It adds glamor, volume, and texture to your crowning glory. Surprisingly, it requires minimal maintenance. 

2. Korean C-Curl 

Under this style, your curls will be subtle and create an inward-facing C shape. It will add contour to your jawline and showcase your face’s shape. This is a great hairstyle for women who have short hair but would want to have additional volume. 

3. Korean Body Wave Perm 

It is similar to an S-curl perm. However, the main difference is that it has a larger S shape, making your hair more defined. Your curls will be falling in the same direction instead of various swirls. This also makes the overall look cleaner. 

Korean vs. Japanese vs. Singaporean Perm

asian hair perm male
Japanese Perm 

Asian perm can be confusing. The specific styles can vary depending on where you are. Below are three of the most common perms worth looking at if you want to give your mane a new personality. 

1. Korean Perm 

When talking about Asian perm, this is probably what most people have in mind. This is what you will see being sported by Korean celebrities. Compared to a Japanese perm, a Korean perm is more defined. The curls are clearer and bigger. 

A common characteristic of a Korean perm is that the curls tend to be more concentrated at the end of the hair. It does not have multiple layers, which means you can easily maintain it. 

2. Japanese Perm 

The best thing about the Japanese perm is that it is subtle and natural. At first look, you might not even think that your hair has undergone any treatment. This is for those who want to keep their hairstyle fab but low-key. It does not just give your hair curls but also texture. 

One important thing to note about a Japanese perm is that it is the least damaging to your hair. This is because it uses minimal chemicals and heat. Nonetheless, such can be a double-edged sword. It also means that the perm may not be as long-lasting as others. 

3. Singaporean Perm 

While it is not as popular as the two mentioned above, Singaporean perm is another style you might consider.

The country is known for its humidity, so perm styles here are done in such a way that they will keep you comfortable while being stylish. Singapore is also known for being fast-paced and having a casual lifestyle, so perm here tends to be always ready. 

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How Asian Hair Perm Is Done 

The process can vary depending on where it is done. It can be different depending on the country or salon. In general, however, getting a perm involves almost the same steps as we’ll talk about below:

  1. The procedure often starts with a hair trim. But before such, the stylist will wash your hair, making it easier to work on every strand. Trimming is crucial as it will make the curls more well-defined. It also gets rid of dry hair or split ends. 
  2. Next, the hair on the top will be separated into sections and pinned. The size of the rollers used will depend on how small or large you want the curls to be. They can also be spaced close or far from each other depending on the look you want to achieve. 
  3. A solution will then be placed on the hair. This will help retain the curls even after weeks or months of having a perm. 
  4. The stylist will cover the top of your head with plastic, which will remain for 45 minutes to an hour. This will give the solution time to penetrate the hair to make defined curls. 
  5. Next, the stylist will remove the plastic, then apply another solution. It will then be rinsed, blow-dried, and styled. 

Watch the short video below for a quick visual guide of how Asian perm is done:

Again, does perm work on Asian hair? A perm works on Asian hair. It makes their hair look soft and lighter. It’s common to use a curling iron in Asia, but you can also get a digital or Asian perm at a hair salon.

Asian Hair Perm Tips and Tricks

asian hair perm female

Keep your mane fresh and stylish after getting a perm by taking note of the things we’ll discuss below:

1. Do Not Wash Your Hair Immediately 

It is tempting to have a shower once you get home after getting a perm. Nonetheless, this should not be the case, especially if you want your perm to last longer.

It can strip the chemicals added to your hair during treatment. You should wait at least 48 hours before washing your mane, or the curls can quickly fade. 

Aside from not washing your hair, there is one thing that you should avoid – chlorinated water. Chlorine is a chemical that can seep into hair cuticles.

This will prevent the hair from getting its natural moisture back. Hence, your hair will be dry and frizzy, making it unsightly with your perm. 

2. Use the Right Shampoo and Conditioner 

To maintain the volume and beauty of your curls, pay attention to the hair care products you are using, especially shampoo and conditioner.

Your hair will likely go dry and brittle after the treatment because of the chemicals. Use gentle shampoos that can keep your hair smooth without stripping natural oils. 

Natural is the way to go when it comes to your choice of shampoo. Take the time to read the label. Avoid those that contain sulfates, parabens, and other toxic ingredients that can damage your hair. Using those with a special formula to maintain curly or wavy hair is also good. 

3. Forget About Your Cotton Towel 

Cotton is one of the most popular materials in a bath towel, which many people use when drying their hair. Nonetheless, this is one thing that you should avoid.

This can cause frizz. It is best to invest in a microfiber towel. It is made of a gentle fabric that feels softer and gentler than a human hair. 

Aside from choosing the right towel, the way you dry your hair is also a crucial consideration. It is tempting to rub forcefully, thinking it will dry your hair quicker.

Nonetheless, if you have an Asian perm, such is bad for your curls. Instead, you should squeeze excess water, wrap your head with a microfiber towel, and wait for the towel to absorb moisture. 

4. Use a Blow Dryer Properly 

A blow dryer is a lifesaver! However, it also has several drawbacks, especially when you have an Asian hair perm. The heat can do more harm than good to your mane.

Avoid its negative effects by using the right hairdryer. More importantly, choose the right setting. It should be on cool mode, which will make it less damaging. 

Using a diffuser attachment in your blow dryer is also good. This will help in improving the consistency of airflow. Instead of concentrating it on a specific portion, it disperses air in a large area. This is especially important if you are not using the cool setting. 

5. Apply Hair Mask 

Once a week, you should use a hair mask. This is an effective product that will help retain moisture, making the perm look livelier. Choose the right hair mask, especially in terms of the ingredients.

Like other hair care products, stay away from those with damaging chemicals and opt for one with natural ingredients. 

6. Do Not Comb Your Hair

Combing your perm is one mistake you should never commit. If you have straight hair, you can prevent frizz with a comb. However, the effect is different when you have a perm.

Comb only the top part of the perm, which is the straight part of your hair. Do not comb the curls. They will not only lose volume, but they can also become frizzy. 

7. Trim Regularly 

A regular trim is a must-have for maintaining an Asian hair perm. As your hair grows longer, it will weigh down the curls. In turn, it will lose volume and bunce. A regular trim can bring the curls to life while also getting rid of unsightly dead ends. 

8. Avoid Touching Your Hair 

It is natural for most people to touch their hair all the time. While you can run your fingers on your hair, avoid doing it all the time. Your fingers can be dirty, which will make your hair oily and can also clog the pores. The dirt from everything that you have touched can transfer to your hair. 

9. Skip the Curling Iron

You might think that a good way to maintain the curls from your perm is to use a curling iron. However, like other hair styling products, it uses heat, damaging your hair.

It can exacerbate the damage since your hair has already been through chemicals when you got a perm. 

10. Go for Silk or Satin Pillows 

Your choice of pillow or pillowcase impacts your Asian hair perm. It is best to go with satin or silk. Such fabrics will minimize friction between the pillow and your hair.

Hence, it will be smoother over time. Aside from your choice of pillow, it is also good to tie your hair properly so that it won’t tangle when you sleep, especially if you tend to move a lot. 

Frequently Asked Questions – All About Asian Hair Perm 

What Is an Asian Perm?

Asian perm is a re-texturizing hair treatment. It uses hot rollers or heated rods. This will add volume and style, making it a great choice for people who have thinning hair.

You can get a Korean, Japanese, or Singaporean perm. Whatever you choose will dictate how natural or well-defined the curls will look. 

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How Long Does an Asian Perm Last? 

In most cases, an Asian perm will last up to six months. However, if you have colored or treated hair before getting a perm, it may only last one to three months.

An Asian perm is best on virgin hair if you want to see the effects longer. Regular care and maintenance will also help to retain the curls. 

How Much Does an Asian Perm Cost? 

On the low-end, Asian perms can range from $50 to $150. On the other hand, if you do it in a well-known salon with an experienced stylist, be prepared to pay up to $400.

It is often more expensive than a traditional perm because the process takes longer to complete, and it will require more extensive work. 

Will Asian Perm Damage Your Hair? 

Unfortunately, an Asian perm will damage your hair. It uses heat and chemicals, which can cause long-term effects, especially if you do it often.

This is also why it is not for people who have damaged and bleached hair. For a slightly safer treatment, go for Japanese perm, as it uses minimal chemicals and heat since the effects are subtle. 

In Closing – Asian Hair Perm [How to and Tips] 

Are you looking for the best way to level up your crowning glory? Why not consider getting an Asian perm? This is a great way to add texture to your hair for the ladies and gents.

It will give you well-defined curls for added style and volume. You can get different styles, including Korean, Japanese, and Singaporean perm. 

An Asian perm can last up to six months if you have healthy hair. However, for the best look, be proactive in taking care of your locks.

Using the right shampoo, conditioner, and other hair styling products is necessary. Ditch your cotton towel and use a microfiber towel instead. When using a blow dryer, use a cool setting. A regular trim is also a must. 

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