What Is the Difference Between Wave Nouveau & Carefree Curl?


When you have thick, ethnic hair and want to style or tame your mane, a visit to the beauty-supply store can make your head spin. To narrow down your choices, you might stick with one of several reliable makers of professional ethnic hair-care lines. SoftSheen-Carson Professional manufactures ethnic hair products, including the Wave Nouveau perm system and the line of Carefree Curl formulations. The company has been around for over 100 years and continuously updates its products with new formulas and innovative ingredients. The two products work differently, so choose the right one to get the hot look that can make your hair stand out from the crowd.

Wave Nouveau Perm

SoftSheen-Carson got a patent for the Wave Nouveau perm system in 1987. According to the company's website, Wave Nouveau was the first perm made specifically for African-American hair. The first step in this perm process uses thioglycolate cream, a chemical that releases the natural curl or shape of the hair and softens it in preparation for the next step. The Wave Nouveau Phase II Shape Transformer reconfigures and locks your hair into a new shape, whether straight or curly. The company site advises that you get your Wave Nouveau perm from a professional stylist, and this should preferably be done by a stylist with mainly ethnic clientele who share your hair type.

Maintaining Your Perm

Additional Wave Nouveau products for daily use keep your hair smooth, shiny and looking its best in your new permed style. You don't want dried or fried hair after your perm. Use the Revitalizing Mousse to help hold your style in place. The Wave Nouveau Daily Humectant Moisturizing Lotion can be worked into dry hair for extra moisture. There's also a gel and a spray-on moisturizing mist. Your stylist can give you the best advice on which ones you'll need to take home.

Carefree Curl

Carefree Curl is a professional "cold wave" product. SoftSheen-Carson developed the Carefree Curl concept back in 1979, using different formulations from the Wave Nouveau perm. As the name suggests, Carefree Curl gives you the shiny, bouncy, well-defined curls lots of girls love. A chemical called "ammonium thioglycolate" in the Chemical Rearranger changes the natural molecular bonds of the hair to allow straightening and smoothing. Then your stylist uses the Curl Booster during the curling or wrapping to keep hard-to-tame hair in place and make sure it stays in good condition. To finish, the stylist sets the curls into place with a chemical neutralizer.

Maintaining Your Curls

Your stylist knows what you'll need to take home to keep your curls bouncy and smooth. The Carefree Curl line includes a conditioning shampoo, moisturizer and curl activator. The formulas give your curls extra shine for that sleek look you desire. The company also sells Snap Back Curl Restorer to help you keep rocking the curls as long as you can before your next salon appointment.

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