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How to Get Jerry Curls

Determine to bring MJ's hair back in style? Jerry curls were once the signature of soul, but the upkeep they required caused them to eventually give way to lower maintenance dos. If you long for sleek, glossy curls, you can still get them by using a combination of products that soften your hair and hold the curl. Read on to learn how to get jerry curls the classic way that produces bouncy, modern-looking curls.

Buy Jerry curl supplies. You can find kits in most drugstores or beauty stores. Your kit should contain a softener to loosen your hair, a solution to set the curls, and perm rods. In addition to these materials, you'll need activator (aka Jerry juice, which keeps the curls looking moist and tight) and a shower cap.

Making Jerry curls the classic way requires using chemicals that can cause permanent damage to your hair. If you apply the chemicals incorrectly, use too much, or overdo it in any way, your hair could become dry and brittle, and it might even break. This extreme hair damage is one reason why people stopped making Jerry curls the classic way in the mid-nineties. If you want the Jerry curl look without the harsh chemicals, skip down to the next section.

You might want to consider having your Jerry curls put in at a salon instead of doing them yourself. You're essentially giving yourself a perm, which requires some skill and knowledge of hair. If you have it done at a salon you'll need to go back for regular touch ups.


Treat your hair with softener. Follow the instructions to apply the softener that came with your Jerry curl kit. Smooth it all over your hair and leave it in for the allotted amount of time. This will relax your natural curls and get your hair ready to be permed.


Apply the setting solution and roll your hair up in perm rods. Following the directions in your package, saturate your hair with setting solution, divide it into sections and roll it up in the perm rods. Secure each rod and use more setting solution to begin the process of permanently curling your hair.


Leave the perm rods in for the specified amount of time. Don't leave them in too long; the setting solution contains damaging chemicals that can really harm your hair if you overdo it.


Maintain the curls with the curl activator. Apply it to your hair and use your fingers to create defined curls. It's important to keep your hair moisturized all day long, since otherwise it will become very brittle and dry. Use the activator on your hair at night and wear a shower cap to keep your pillow from getting messy.

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