The perturbation method is developed to deal with the problem of determining the effective nonlinear conductivity of Kerr-like nonlinear media under an external ac electric field. As an example, we have considered the cylindrical inclusion embedded in a host under the sinusoidal external field E1 sin (ohgrt) + E3 sin (3ohgrt) with frequencies ohgr and 3ohgr. The potentials of composites at higher harmonics are derived in both local inclusion particle and host regions. The effective responses of bulk nonlinear composites at basic frequency and harmonics are given for cylindrical composites in the dilute limit. Moreover, the relationships between the nonlinear effective responses at the basic frequency and the third harmonics are derived.