Curls get the girls: are perms coming back into fashion?

Leave the mane untamed! Curls will be your best asset in 2018. 

If you're the proud owner of curly hair, you'll be thrilled to hear you're ahead of the hottest hair trend this year. 

While the nineties and noughties saw sleek, straight hair enjoy the spotlight, 2018 will have us all dying for wild, curly hair. Pinterest recently revealed its users have been desperately hunting for curly hairstyles, even indicating we may see a return to perms.

Yes, perms! We want curls and we want them permanently!

While a perm conjures images of Nicole Kidman in the 80s, the 2018 perm is more relaxed, with wild waves and larger curls becoming the most sought-after looks.

Leading the style pack is Victoria's Secret model Alanna Arrington, who is in hot demand on the catwalk thanks to her gorgeous locks (and, well, gorgeous everything). 

Speaking to Harper's Bazaar after her first VS show in 2016, Alanna confessed she was relieved the lingerie brand didn't straighten her hair for the show.

"[Girls] are going to see me out there with curly hair that isn't the typical blown-out bombshell and they're going to say, 'Well she can do it— I can do it.' It's all I want for a girl with curly hair to say, 'Yes, I can.'," she told the magazine. "These individual looks that every girl has, these are sexy now."

She wasn't wrong! More and more women are embracing their natural curl, including the new Taylor Swift and Australian writer and beauty mogul, Zoe Foster Blake.

Since giving birth to her second child in July last year, Zoe says she's reclaimed her curly hair, with a new fringe to boot!


After pregnancy, and giving birth, and being tethered to your delightful sprog for months upon months, you begin to yearn for your pre-baby identity to return. Any identity, actually. (I’d take Gary two doors down.) Who IS this person, chained to the house, eating granola for dinner, smattered with stale breastmilk? Enough! Enough. Old You™? is no more, and this new mum phase can’t hang around forever, so it must be time for New You™?. It could take three months, or three years, but my god you’ve earned a bit of self-care and probably some new shoes. New You™? signals to the world that you’re back, you’re better than ever, and you’re not to be fucked with, actually. My New Me™? arrived today! Features include my natural, air-dried curls, zero styling, the fringe I’ve wanted since 2015, cup holders, and duh, 500 selfies. Thank you, @hairbylaurenm, and thank you Flashdance/Dirty Dancing/Hot Shots Part Deux for the inspo.

A post shared by ZOË FOSTER BLAKE (@zotheysay) on

For those who don't have natural curls like Alanna and Zoe, the perm route might be the best way to go.

Dissimilar to retro perms, you can now select how large you want your curls - allowing for beachy waves, ringlets or Alanna curls.

Traditionally, perms are achieved using ammonium thioglycolate, a chemical that keeps your curls in tact. This is the best option available to make sure your trip to the salon lasts! However, it's always best to consult your hairdresser regarding your options before you book your appointment. (Since traditional perms went out of style 30 years ago, some salons don't even offer the service!)

"The old perm method was high maintenance to achieve the fashionable structured hold style," says Brad Lepper, Sebastian Professional Creative Director for Australia and New Zealand, and general curl expert. "Curls are now easily attainable with the right at-home routine using the best tools and products for your hair."

The greatest challenge for curly-haired girls is, of course, maintenance, so we've rounded up some top products for perfectly defined and bouncy curls:

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