18 Best Perm Hairstyles For Women in 2019

Leona | 10 March 2019

It seems everyone has got perm fever!


Before you switch off at the very mention of perm hairstyles, hear us out, because ’80s-inspired hair has seen a huge revival as of late. First of all, rest assured that this hair trend has nothing to do with the frizzy perms of yesteryear. In fact, this look has taken the best aspects of the retro perms and given them a modern day shake-up!

From Karlie Kloss’s retro spirals to Chrissy Teigen’s big throwback curls, the evolution of perms has been given the A-list seal of approval – and we can see why. Don’t believe us? Then check out our gallery for the best modern takes on perm hair, and prepare for a bucket load of #hairspiration.

Modern perm hairstyles you need to know about


Perm hair - volumnous pink balayage hair -
Stunning perm on lob length hair. Credit: Instagram.com/hairbypaulahouston

1. Pink curls

There is a misconception that the ombre hair trend is limited to straight tresses, but this Instagram pic proves that you can show off any ombre style just as brilliantly on curly locks! Come on, pink and a perm, what’s not to love? Credit: @hairbypaulahouston

Perm Hair - tight silver perm on bob hair
Full perm from the root on silver hair. Credit:Instagram.com/hairbypaulahouston

2. Vary your curl size

Stuck on which curls are for you? Well, why not get them all? Create a series of tight coils throughout your mane, and pepper in some medium and large-sized curls for good measure.

This will add plenty of height and incredible bounce to your mane, as well as keeping things looking natural! Credit: @hairbypaulahouston

Perm Hair - tight perm on bob hair
Medium-toned brown bob with permed hair. Credit: Instagram/hairbypaulahouston

3. Tame thick hair

At your wits end with your unmanageable thick mane? Then try getting a perm with loose curls, like the picture above, and rest easy with your new stunning style. Credit: @hairbypaulahouston

Perm hair - short blonde perm on two women - Instagram
Short permed blonde hair. Credit: Instagram.com/damiansantiago

4. Cropped perms

Despite common belief, short hair is suitable for curling; and getting a perm is the ideal solution to all your hair styling woes! Michelle Pfieffer, is that you? Credit: @damiansantiago

Perm hair - bob length hair - red natural looking curls - IG
Deep red bob hair with bangs with tight perm. Credit: Instagram.com/alyssaweinzap

5. Bob and bangs

Not only is this perm, bob and bangs combo totally on trend, the addition of a deep red hue works to add even more depth, too. Credit: @alyssaweinzap

Editor’s tip: Maintain your colour vibrancy by switching to a wash and care system formulated especially for coloured tresses, like Dove Colour Care Shampoo and Conditioner.

Perm hair - bob length brown hair - tight curls - IG hey_cabeleireiro
Brown bob length hair with tight permed curls. Credit: Instagram.com/hey_cabeleireiro

6. Up limp locks

Tightly permed curls add great fullness to all hair types and can still look effortlessly natural. It’s a win-win situation all around really! Credit: @hey_cabeleireiro

Perm Hair - Bronde hair - medium curls - lob length - IG
Bronde lob hair with tight perm curls. Credit: Instagram.com/hiukxenne

7. Bronde perm

Bronde (somewhere between brown and blonde) is the perfect colour for those wanting to give there newfound curls a delicate sun-kissed touch. Credit: @hiukxenne

Perm hair - medium length tight perm - Instagram @ damiansantiago
Tight perm on bob length brown hair. Credit: Instagram.com/jasakane

8. Go wild

Feel it’s time to let loose? Then have your curls created in different directions, and ensure you have small curls underneath and large curls on top. See? Creating a wild ‘n’ ready look has never been easier!  Credit: @jasakane

Perm hair - big perm curls - light brown hair with blonde highlights - IG
Retro perm from the root on medium length brown hair with blonde highlights. Credit: Instagram.com/styledbyevelina

9. Be retro

Earn yourself some extra style points this season and ooze some ’80s sex appeal with a mid-length perm.Va va va voom! Credit: @styledbyevelina

Perm hair - Long ginger permed hair
Fiery ginger hair with wild loose perm. Credit: Instagram.com/damiansantiago

10. Loose waves

Don’t want a blast from the past? Then keep your perm ultra modern by working loose, undone curls that provide texture and lift in equal measure. Credit: @damiansantiago

Perm hair - long brown hair with soft blonde balayage - Instagram
Loose waves on long dark brown hair with light brown balayage. Credit: Instagram.com/damiansantiago

11. The time-saving perm

Tired of creating waves in your hair each and every morning? Then it’s time to get a perm. These retro-inspired hairstyles aren’t all about tight coils, as the technique can also be used to create soft waves, too! Credit: @damiansantiago

Perm hair - Bob length brown hair with slight perm - half up half down - Instagram
Half-up, half-down loose wavy perm. Credit: Instagram.com/kkcmst

12. Half-up perm

Now, just because you’ve had a perm that doesn’t mean you’re restricted with styling. Just take a leaf out of this Instagrammer’s book and work a half-up, half-down look. Credit: @kkcmst

Perm hair - Long dark brown permed hair - Instagram
Long black hair with big perm curls. Credit: Instagram.com/eddie.eidde

13. Glossy perm

This long permed hairstyle is giving us all major mane envy – come on, just look at how shiny it is! Credit: @eddie.eidde

Perm hair - Bob length brown hair with loose perm -Instagram @hairandmakeupheidi
Soft waves on bob length brown hair. Credit: Instagram.com/hairandmakeupheidi

14. Neat perm

To elevate your cropped ‘do, we suggest opting for a perm that curls the under-layers of hair more tightly than the ones on top. As you can see from the image above, it keeps the look neat, while proving plenty of room for experimentation. Credit: @hairandmakeupheidi

Perm hair - dropped perm curls - lob dark brown hair - IG
Wet look dropped perm on black hair. Credit: Instagram.com/tiffygotsthishair

15. Wet-look perm

We’ve come over all nostalgic looking at this ‘do. Not only does it draw from the iconic ’80s perm, but also the throwback ’90s wet-look. Kim Kardashian West, eat your heart out! Credit: @tiffygotsthishair

Editor’s tip: Recreate the look by scrunching some of the VO5 Mega Hold Gel Spray through your waves. With no stickiness or flaking, this product helps prevent fluff for up to 24 hours.

Perm hair - long pixie perm - caramel brown hair - IG
Long pixie loose perm hair. Credit: Instagram.com/evolve_salon

16. Pixie perms

The hottest cut of the moment, pixie crops have officially been given a wavy perm update; proving coils can work on short hair just as great as long tresses. Credit: @evolve_salon

Perm hair - big perm curls - brown hair with blonde balayage -
Permed hair on brown tresses with blonde balayage. Credit: Instagram.com/tiffygotsthishair

17. Be playful

Get creative with your perm hairstyle and make anything and everything your accessory. Be it glitter, hair stickers or even a headscarf, there’s no end to the possibilities. Credit: @tiffygotsthishair

Perm hair - shaggy perm with bangs on medium brown hair - Instagram
Shaggy loose perm on lob length hair with bangs. Credit: Instagram.com/jasakane

18. Shaggy perm

Let’s be honest, fringes can be a bit problematic regardless of the look your going for. But the great thing is, with perms, bangs look stunning in any style.

Choose to keep your fringe straight, go wavy, or even get tight coils; whatever you choose, you’ll look bangin’! Credit: @jasakane

Editor’s tip: To create big, bodylicious hair, like the one above, we recommend investing in a mousse. Try the VO5 Smoothly Does It Curl Defining Mousse, to build volume and make every coil pop.


Fallen in love with perm hairstyles? Then don’t forget to head over to our Vintage Hairstyles and Curly Hairstyles pages, for even more incredible hair looks to try out.