Piggyback perm | How to roll a piggyback spiral perm | Cost | Products

Perm is a technique that results in the change of one’s hair texture for a specific period of time. Perm is usually performed in order to attain natural-looking curl patterns. However, straight hair perm has also been introduced as one of its varieties.

Piggyback perm is one of the kinds of perming techniques usually applicable for people owning hair length down the waist. Like other perms, this can also be performed through a perming kit yourself

What is Piggyback Perm

A Piggyback perm is usually performed on hair with a long length. In the case of a piggyback perm, a lot of hair has to be wrapped around a single perming rod.

The entire hair is to be divided into around 5 to 6 sections and two rods are used per segment of the hair. The motive behind piggyback perm is to produce more even curls.

Piggyback Perm Vs Spiral Perm

A Spiral Root perm is performed for attaining spiral form of curls. This requires a lot many rods to be fixed in the hair. The shape of the hair may resemble thin coiled curls. However, it appears less natural due to the extreme curls.

Long and thin curling rods are set vertically in the hair. This perm is ideal for hair with a length of at least eight inches long. The strands are wrapped in such a way that one rod overlaps the other.

While in the case of a piggyback perm, two rods are used per segment of the hair. Half of the hair is wrapped spirally around the rods with an overlapping technique. The ends of the segment are wrapped in the same way as a standard perm. It is wrapped in a crokinole way.

Popular Piggyback perms

Piggyback perms are performed in various ways. The length of the hair plays a prominent role in the determination of the process to be used while perming.

1. Piggyback perm for long hair


In the case of long hair, the hair must be divided and subdivided into different sections where each sub-section will hold two perming rods of different sizes. Smaller rods must be placed at the base and bigger ones at the top.

The front section must be considered for rolling first. The process of wrapping and rolling is all the same in hair of any length rolling and placement of rods in long hair may take considerable time.

2. Piggyback perm for short hair


Piggyback perm is generally performed on long hair as in short-length hair, the length of the strand to be wrapped around the perming rods will be less. In the case of short hair, other forms of perm can be preferred.

How to do a Piggyback Perm?

The process of piggyback perm involves a series of steps which are as follows

  • Rinse hair: Commence with making your hair slightly damp. Comb the entire hair using a wide-toothed comb. This is done in order to clean the hair by rinsing and detangling any coils or curls.
  • Sectioning: The next step involves the division of the hair into various sections. Usually, six sections are adequate for this. Each section can be formed using clips. Each section has to be considered at a time for the placement of rods.
  • Placement of rods: A perming rod has to be placed in the middle of each strand. The end of the strands must be wrapped around the rods. The rod must be rolled toward the head base. It’s time for the fixation of the other rod. The other rod must be positioned at the end of the strand hence rolling it at the end ensuring it is secured to the previous rod ( base rod).
  • Repeat: The wrapping process has to be repeated until the entire hair is involved.
  • Perming solution: The perm solution must be applied evenly to each rod placed. If one is performing the process with a home kit, necessary instructions regarding the perming solution must be taken care of before perming.
  • Rinse: The hair must be rinsed in order to get rid of the solution. Warm water must be preferred for rinsing. It must be washed thoroughly for around 5 to 7 minutes.
  • Drying rods: The rods must be dried. One can wait for 5 to 8 minutes for drying the rods. Natural drying may take considerable time, therefore, a blow dryer can be taken help of.
  • Neutralizer: It is time to apply a neutralizer to the strands. After applying the neutralizer, the hair must be left for around 10 minutes and washed. As soon as it dries off, the rods must be taken off from each section. Neutralizer helps to maintain the lost pH level of hair.

Piggyback Perm on Yourself

For performing piggyback perm oneself, one requires all the products necessary for performing perm. Home kit for perming, perm rods, rat tail comb, clips and wrappers. As per the instructions mentioned in the kit, the process must be followed.

The top portion of the hair must be sectioned from the sides and then pinned down. The wraps have to be applied in each segment beginning from the top section followed by the sides and the bottom part. The same perming process has to be followed thereafter.

Professional Instructions on Wrapping a Spiral piggyback Perm

Curls as a consequence of spiral piggyback perm resemble springs. The rods used in this case are slender and comparatively longer. It is more or less of a corkscrew pattern.

Cost of a Piggyback Perm

Piggyback perm usually costs around $40 to $200.

The cost depends upon various factors that include the length of the hair, hairstylist, types of curls, process of rolling, the quality of products used and so more.

Popular Piggyback Perm Products

The only difference between a standard perm and a piggyback perm is the process of rolling and wrapping. Therefore, products used for standard perms can be followed in a piggyback perm as well.

Products required for a piggyback perm are the perming rods, wrappers, perming solution and neutralizer. Home kits for perming are also available. Some of the products required for the process are the following.


A piggyback perm differs from other perm techniques through the process of rolling only. However, it requires comparatively more effort than other perming techniques. In order to attain more consistent and even curls, one must go for this technique.

However, too frequent perming may lead to various skin issues including scalp damage, lack of hair growth and so more due to the presence of thioglycolate solution.