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Once the ventilated facial hair has been completed, whether it is a handmade beard, sideburns, eyebrows or moustache, a tight curl is required for the finishing touches to add texture and shape and to make the final piece realistic. Perming your ventilated facial hair offers a permanent curl that is placed exactly where it is required. By perming the ventilated facial hair it also drastically reduces future dressing times and aids in the facial hair’s continuity.


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Using Hot Tongs On The Ventilated Facial Hair


Traditionally hot tongs and a hot box have been used when dressing and curling the completed ventilated facial hair. This method works perfectly and allows the curl to be placed where it is required. The tongs become very hot and create a drying effect on the hair. This extreme heat ‘frizzes’ the hair and produces a very nice and natural facial hair texture.


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The downfall to this method is that the curl is not permanent and requires re-dressing after every use. Very time consuming and the extreme heat will eventually damage and discolour the piece of ventilated facial hair.


Perming The Ventilated Facial Hair


The solution is to get your 1970s on and crack open the perming kit. Original kits can still be found in local pharmacist’s stores which are probably still directly from the 1970s. The ones I have seen are all covered in an inch of dust. Perming is not so popular anymore but works brilliantly on facial hair. Perming solutions can be purchased from Salon Services.


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Using tiny wooden rods the ventilated facial hair is sectioned off and with the aid of an end paper, rolled onto the rods. The hair is then soaked in the waving solution and left to work it’s magic for 15 minutes. Simply rinse well with cool water (being careful not to remove the wooden rods) and pat the excess water out with a towel.


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The final stage is to pop over some neutraliser, soaking well and leave for a further 10 minutes. Rinse and remove the wooden rods. Pat dry with a towel and leave to air dry.


Once dry just cut and comb out into your style. Wherever the wooden rods are placed and the hair is set, is where the curl will lay. Basically think of setting a full head of hair. Exactly the same process but all in a teeny tiny way.


Perming Cautions:


Be aware! Whenever any chemical activity is applied to hair for use in both wig making and ventilated facial hair, care is always required. The history of the hair is unknown and it could contain hair from a few different sources. Colouring or perming any hair for use in postiche does require caution.


Check for colourfastness


Test a small amount of hair with the chosen perming solutions first. The second stage neutraliser contains peroxide and could lighten the colour. If yak hair is used in the ventilated facial hair, this could very easily lighten. Yak hair has had the cuticle stripped away so is difficult to dye. If yak hair has been dyed, a colour test is absolutely required.

If the hair does lighten, try watering down the solutions as to be more gentle on the dye. A few more minutes to cure maybe required.


Check For Damage


Hair used for wig making and ventilated facial hair would have usually been heavily processed before it reaches you. So  by carrying out a perming process, this can add further damage to the hair being used.  Test a small amount of hair first using the same process as above.


Try watering the solutions down firstly by 25% then 50%. If damage to the hair occurs, reduce the waving process time to 10 from 15 minuets.


perming, facial, moustache



Perming any ventilated facial hair gives a great natural finish. It is simple to carry out and great results are achieved. Being permanently curled means the ventilated facial hair pieces do not have to be dressed and tonged after every use either. Give it a go, you’ll never look back.



Philip Carson-Sheard

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