Men everywhere have been embracing curly hair once again, and with modern perming techniques, it’s never been easier to try out a new look. A perm can do the trick, whether you want a drastic change or something more subtle. Plus, because perms last for months, you’ll do less damage to your hair than heat-styling it everyday. Check out these cool, flattering perm hairstyles for men that show off your unique style.
1. Fringe + Perm
Once your hair is permed, you can cut and style it like naturally curly hair. One option is a curly fringe. While you could leave your hair long and curly all over, an on-trend look is to team the fringe with faded sides. Doing so will create a cool contrast and make your hair look thicker and fuller.
2. Caesar Cut + Perm
The Caesar cut is a classic for a reason. While simple, it’s flattering on most face shapes and gives short hair an edgy touch. It works equally well with curly hair as with straight hair, so if you’ve just permed your hair, why not try it? Remember that you will need to grow your hair longer on top to create the curly mini fringe look of the Caesar.
3. Comb Over + Perm
One of the most striking options for curly hair, the comb over has a cool and sophisticated vibe. Men with medium length straight hair who want a drastic change could achieve this look with a perm and strategic cut. However, a comb over with curls won’t have as defined a parting as a straight hair comb over. Instead, it will have a modern and interesting asymmetric look.
4. Drop Fade + Perm
Men not afraid to stand out should consider the drop fade with perm haircut. Drop fades have a dramatic, graphic look and create a sharp visual contrast when paired with curls. To create the curls, your stylist can perm only the crown and center section of your hair. They can then leave some side sections straight, which they can then fade down to form a cool transitional effect.
5. Fade + Perm
Fades can be adapted for all hair types, including curls. To get the fade with perm look, your stylist may first buzz your hair to create the fade before applying the perm chemicals. However, you’ll need to make sure the top section has grown out longer, as curly hair tends to appear shorter than straight hair. While your perm will last around six months, your fade must be maintained every three weeks or so.
6. Faux Hawk + Perm
While a faux hawk can be created with straight hair, the natural volume, fullness, and bounce of curls naturally work well with the hairstyle. A faux hawk perm is a more wearable version of the classic faux hawk; your stylist will leave them short and straight instead of shaving or fading the side sections. After perming the center section, use plenty of styling products to build the volume and create the faux hawk shape.
7. Bleach Hair + Perm
There’s nothing cooler than blond curls, especially in summer. However, if you want to make the change, you must set aside some extra time. Because bleaching and perming are chemical processes, your stylist needs to space the treatments apart to avoid damaging your hair.
8. Hard Part + Perm
Guys who want a super modern and eye-catching haircut should consider a hard part with a perm. As in perm-with-fade haircuts, the style is all about contrast. Your stylist will shave along your side parting while leaving the top section curly and full. The result looks unusual and asymmetrical but with a stylish twist.
9. Long Hair + Perm
The ‘70s are back in fashion, so why not style your hair to match? Modern-day perm techniques have evolved beyond the tight coils of the ’80s. Today, you can get waves and curls that any psychedelic rocker would be proud to have. For the ultimate mane of curly hair, you will need to grow out your natural hair a few inches longer, as the curling process will shorten it.
10. Medium Length Perm
Medium length curly hair is a laidback and sexy hairstyle for men. You can quickly achieve the look with a perm, then put your twist on it by changing up the styling. Use some sea salt spray to create a messy texture for a relaxed look. If you want to look more polished, try a curl-defining spray or serum.
11. Long Fringe +Perm
Like a short fringe, a long fringe looks excellent on permed hair. The curls will make your fringe look thicker and fuller and give you a more youthful appearance. Plus, a longer fringe – particularly in an asymmetric cut – is one of the best ways to disguise a broad forehead.
12. Mid Fade + Perm
If you love the look of an undercut but want a more understated version, try a mid fade with a perm. The long, curly top section adds height and volume, while the mid fade ensures your haircut still looks polished and sharp. Plus, the faded section gives your look a subtly edgy feel.
13. Middle Part + Perm
While most men still part their hair either on the left or the right, middle parting has become more popular recently with the return of the curtain hairstyle. The style suits curly hair and has a laidback ’90s vibe. To get the look, once you’ve permed your hair, have your barber cut the hair so it’s longer at the sides and shorter at the back. Then, use a rattail comb to create two sections and use a little product to keep your hair in place.
14. Mohawk + Perm
A permed mohawk is an ideal choice for guys who want to go more extreme than the faux hawk. Bold, graphic, and out there, it’s for men who want to command attention and make a statement with their style. While permed curly hair has more volume than straight hair, it doesn’t have the natural structure required to create a full mohawk. You will still need to use styling products and blow-dry your hair into the required shape. However, the results will be worth the effort.
15. Perm + Pompadour
Curly hair looks fantastic when paired with the pompadour. Curls add texture and direction to the style, making it look more interesting than a straight pompadour. Even if your curly hair is short, the pompadour will still have a dramatic and stylish look. An oversized pompadour works even better if you want an attractive haircut.
16. Perm + Volume
Perms aren’t just for changing the texture of your hair. You can also use a perm to create more volume, making your locks look thicker and fuller. These treatments use the same chemicals as a traditional perm, except the shaping rods are removed before the neutralizer is applied. That lets the curls fall, so they are less tightly coiled and instead form a natural wave. If you have a classic perm, you can add more volume by applying mousse and using a hairdryer with a diffuser.
17. Short Hair + Perm
Perming short hair will always result in tighter curls. The advantage is that the styling is already built into your hair – there’s no need for products or extra effort, as your curls do all the talking. A simple short back and sides haircut suits short permed hair, but you can also opt for a Caesar to minimize a larger forehead or add a fade for an edgier look.
18. Undercut + Perm
Just as a perm looks great teamed with a fade, it also looks fantastic with an undercut. The contrast between voluminous curls on top and shaved sides creates a dramatic look to ensure all eyes are on you. Define your undercut by adding a razored part and add extra styling product to your permed hair for even more volume and texture.
Per Hair Men FAQs
How long do perms last for guys?
A perm will generally last for around three months. However, it will depend on the length of your hair, how fast it grows, the type of perm, and how well you look after it. The shorter your hair is and the more regularly you get it cut can shorten the amount of time it lasts.
How do I keep my perm curly?
There are a few key rules to keep your perm curly. The first is to not wash your hair for at least 48 hours after the treatment, and don’t dye your hair for a full two weeks after. You’ll also want to avoid brushing it in the first 24 hours and styling it up. Choose a shampoo and conditioner designed for permed hair, and always make sure to use moisturizing treatments to keep your hair in good condition. Lastly, treat your hair carefully when brushing, and try to avoid heat as much as possible.
How much is a perm?
A perm can cost anywhere between $60-$200, depending on the type, length, stylist, and brand used. It can also vary between geographical locations. Most salons can do an initial consult and give you an idea of how much to budget.
Will my perm get curlier after I wash it?
Washing your hair won’t make your perm any curlier, but it may take on a more natural shape. Of course, washing will also remove any styling products that could be weighing the hair down, making your curls appear lighter and bouncier.
Can you undo a perm?
A perm is meant to be permanent, but you can undo a bad perm in some ways. The best method is to speak to a professional so you don’t unintentionally cause more damage. However, at-home solutions can be to comb through a cream perm solution to reset the bonds in your hair. Other natural remedies can include canola or coconut oil treatments or a really deep conditioner; however, your results can vary. Finally, cutting the treated hair off is another, albeit more extreme, solution to getting rid of a bad or unwanted perm.
Are perms bad for men?
Any treatment that chemically changes the properties of your hair can cause damage. However, there are steps you can take to minimize any negative effects. Always use sulfate-free chemical-friendly shampoo and conditioner, and invest in some nourishing treatments and heat protection. Also, if your hair is colored or lightened, check with your stylist about possible effects this might have on your results and hair condition.
Arabella Roden is a skilled writer and sub-editor with over ten years of experience across print, digital, and B2B. She holds a Bachelor's Degree in Journalism and specializes in beauty, hairstyles, fashion, tattoos, and lifestyle topics. Arabella is currently the Chief Sub Editor at Mecca Brands and has been writing for The Trend Spotter since 2019.
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