The perm was the horror hair do of the 1980s. Ranging from the less desirable firm and sticky to the more sort after mousse laden waves, all girls had curls. It was the law. But then, with the advent of straighteners, followed by Jennifer Aniston and Gwyneth Paltrow's gloriously long and swishy sheets circa 2000, rollers were hastily relegated to the back of wardrobes as natural straight heads rested easy and curly tops retreated to their bedrooms to regroup. But not for long.
Big blow dries and gentle waves slowly crept back onto the catwalks and the perm is enjoying a second coming. But, thankfully, not as you might remember it. The perm mark two is a more subtle creature. "Think low maintenance, soft waves rather than the terrifyingly tight curls of the 1980s," explains stylist Jeb Stone. "The new perm is gentle and flattering and perfect for anyone looking to create some permanent volume rather than relying on an elaborate blow drying routine."
In the past, the 'cold' perm created the tight curls that still make anyone who lived through the 1980s shudder, whereas the digital perms used now give a naturally wavy look similar to what you might achieve with tongs. "Digital perms are less reliant on chemicals and more on heat," adds Jeb, "which I think is why they've seen a resurgence as we all look towards a more organic way of living."