When you hear the word “perm,” you probably automatically envision big, voluminous retro ringlets. However, as technology advances, so do hair styling techniques, and with new technological advancements, people with limp, flat locks can rejoice because digital perm is designed specifically for them. If you like the look of digitally permed hair as much as I do, here are 7 things you need to know about “Digital Perm” before you try them.

1. What Is Digital Perm?

 Digital perm, also known as “digi perm” or “hot perm”, is Asia’s most popular method for achieving permanent waves. For those looking for loose, natural waves without the harsh chemicals of traditional perms, this perm is an exciting new option. Instead, they use more balanced chemicals along with infrared heat to create your ideal curls.


 The digital perm is ideal for people with very straight or thin hair. Before you lock yourself into a digital perm, you should understand that it is an investment on several levels. This is one of the longest-lasting perms, often giving you curls for up to a year.

2. How Does Digital Perm Look?

 Digital Perm produces big, soft waves/curls similar to curling iron curls. When the hair is dry, the curls stand out more.


 While styling digital-permed hair is simple, getting a beautiful digital perm requires precise and careful execution due to the direct application of heat to the hair. To achieve the perfect digital permed hair look, hair stylists must have a lot of knowledge and high skills in haircuts and perm. This perming technique is ready to give you beautiful, soft curls. It helps provide body and volume to your tresses in a more natural-looking and low-maintenance way.

3. What Are The Differences Between “Cold Perm” vs “Digital Perm”

 To begin, let’s start with “Cold Perm,” which you see quite often in most salons.

Cold Perm

 The characteristic of a cold perm is that the curl appears when the hair gets wet. You can also regard it as a perming method that does not apply heat during the procedure.  Since we say “cold,” there is also the opposite, “hot perm”.  This will be explained later.

 Cold Perm uses only chemicals and no heat during the perming procedure, so the damage to the hair is relatively small, and the result is slightly more natural than a digital perm.

Digital Perm - Hot Perm

 Unlike a cold perm, a digital perm applies chemicals to the hair, and heat is applied (hot perm), so it is possible to create a much more defined perm than a cold perm. In a digital perm, the hair is curled using rods. But unlike a traditional cold perm, these rods are heated and are digitally controlled.

 As you can see in the photo above, this perming method results in more pronounced and defined curls. However, the chemicals used are stronger than those used in a cold perm, so the damage to the hair is harsher. If you do it too many times, the damage to your hair will accumulate, so you need to consult with your stylist.

4. Who Can Get A Digital Perm?

 Digital wave perms came to the West from Asian countries, where they are extremely popular. Therefore, it works best on the thick straight hair that most Asian women have than on Caucasian hair. However, a digital perm doesn’t just work for coarse hair. You can get it for fine hair, already wavy or curly hair too.

Unfortunately, despite so many benefits, getting a digital perm isn’t for everyone.

  • First, determine if your hair is long enough. Your hair should be at least 4 inches long. The strands must be long enough to be wrapped around the rods. And since it’s a procedure that requires heat, you can’t place the rolls too close to the scalp.
  • Another thing to remember is that a hot perm is not for highly damaged hair. If your hair feels gummy or brittle, you must first restore it by using deep conditioners or protein treatments.
  • Remember, hair with normal porosity and elasticity tends to hold a perm best. That said, your hair needs to be healthy if you want your curls to turn out beautifully.
  • Lastly, if you’ve just dyed or bleached your hair, you should hold off your digi perm plans for a month or two to let your locks recover.

5. How To Sleep With Digital Perm Hair?


 Tie a silk cloth on your head or use a silk pillow to avoid waking up with messy hair. Silk material minimizes the friction on the cuticle reducing the appearance of frizz. This way you are able to sleep without worrying about how your hair will look the following day.

6. How Long Does Digital Perm Last?

 A digital perm can last from 6 months to a year. So if you are considering getting this perming method, you must carefully consider if you can commit to this longevity.

Here are some care tips you can add to your hair care routine:

  • Wait 24 hours before you wash your hair after getting a perm to let the curls fully set.
  • Avoid anything with heat – hot shower, heat styling tools, or curling irons – the heat may ruin the shape of your new waves.
  • Detangle your wet hair with your fingers, not a comb or brush.
  • Avoid rubbing your hair vigorously with your towel because hair may get frizzy due to friction.
  • Get a trim once in a while to maintain your hair’s overall health.
  • Use hydrating shampoo and conditioner.
  • Invest in hair products that are safe for curly hair.

7. Are Digital Perm Expensive?

 The price of getting this perming pethod will depend on your salon. The cost starts from $150 in most areas and can go as high as $400. This price can increase depending on the length and volume of your hair. The longer and fuller your locks are, the more product they will need and the longer the procedure will take. One thing you have to remember is that this method is much more expensive than cold perms. A digital perm is also more expensive than a traditional perm because of the time, equipment, and training involved.

 If you’re tired of your straight hair and don’t want to curl it every day, a digital perm is a good option. Digital perms will give you beautiful, natural-looking waves that are simple to style and maintain. If you want the best results, make sure your hair can handle the procedure and look for good salons that specialize in digital perms. Then get ready to enjoy your daily flowing beach waves!

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