Pre Poo For Natural Hair | What Is A Pre Poo
The last thing most of us want to do is add another step to our hair care routine, but if you struggle with dryness or breakage, then you might want to consider introducing your hair to pre pooing. The term pre poo is simply a nickname for a pre-shampoo treatment and it’s a great moisturizing treatment for natural hair. Because shampoos tend to strip your hair of moisture, pre pooing can help cut down on the amount of moisture that’s lost while washing. Pre pooing can be done on dry or damp hair, using oil and/or conditioner. Keep reading to learn more about pre pooing for natural hair.
1How To Pre Poo
In order to pre poo your hair, start by dividing your hair into four to six sections. One section at a time, apply a natural oil (such as coconut oil, olive oil, or castor oil) to your hair, then braid or twist it and cover your hair with a plastic cap. Braiding/twisting is optional, but it’s a good way to keep your hair divided into sections and prevent further tangling. Some people prefer to use a combination of oil and conditioner, or just conditioner alone. If you’ve never done a pre poo treatment before, try both methods and see which one you like better. Dampening your hair with water before applying your oils/conditioner can help the products better absorb into your hair. Leave the oil/conditioner on your hair for 30 minutes to an hour then gently finger detangle your hair before washing it.
2Why Do A Pre Poo?
Aside from the boost of moisture you’ll receive, pre pooing also allows you to detangle your hair before you shampoo, which is a huge plus if your hair tends to get really tangled before you wash it. Natural hair is prone to dryness, so pre pooing is a great option for all natural hair types. You can pre poo every time you wash your hair, once or twice a month, or however often you feel your hair can benefit from it. There’s no one pre poo routine that works for everyone, so feel free to adjust your method to work for you.
3Pre Poo With Coconut Oil
Coconut oil is one of the most popular oils to use for a pre poo. Coconut oil is packed with nutrients that help protect and nourish your hair. It’s also relatively inexpensive and easy to find – you can get it at any supermarket. Virgin or extra virgin is the best type of coconut oil to use for a pre poo. Coconut oil has become somewhat of a controversial product among those with natural hair, due to the wide range of results it tends to yield. Some swear by coconut oil while others report that it dries out their hair terribly. This is normal of course, after all, there is no product that works for everyone. However, the way you use coconut oil will also determine how it will make your hair feel. In general, always apply oils to damp hair to avoid sealing in dryness.
4Pre Poo With Olive Oil
For those who aren’t fans of coconut oil, you may want to give olive oil a shot. Extra virgin olive oil, in particular, has a lot of really great nourishing qualities for natural hair. Pre pooing with olive oil will leave your hair feeling soft and silky. Like coconut oil, you can also easily find olive oil in any supermarket. Olive oil has great moisturizing properties for both your hair and scalp, making it an ideal oil for those who suffer from scalp issues like dandruff.
5Pre Poo With Castor Oil
Castor oil is lauded for its ability to strengthen hair, great news for those who suffer from frequent breakage and shedding. Castor oil has a very thick consistency, so you may find that it’s easier to apply if you mix it with another oil, such as olive oil or jojoba oil. Many people believe that castor oil thickens the hair and stimulates growth, and while that may or may not be true, it definitely has the ability to nourish your hair and make it stronger. So if strengthening your hair is your top priority, try pre pooing with castor oil.
6Pre Poo With Jojoba Oil
Jojoba oil is one of the best oils you can use on your hair. There are some similarities between the composition of jojoba oil and sebum, the oil that our skin naturally produces, making it an extremely compatible oil to use for hair and skin care treatments. Jojoba oil has conditioning properties that are great for natural hair. It tends to be a little pricier than other oils, but a little goes a long way. It’s also a lightweight oil that won’t weigh your hair down, making it ideal for those with fine strands. And while there’s no oil that works for every hair type, jojoba oil is the closest thing to being a universally effective oil treatment for natural hair.
7Pre Poo With Conditioner
While oils work best for some, conditioner is the pre poo product of choice for others. You can use either a cheap, rinse-out conditioner or a deep conditioner: it depends on your preference. However, rinse-out conditioners are usually thinner in consistency and therefore easier to apply to hair that is not soaking wet. Depending on the brands you use, it may also be more economical to use a cheaper, rinse-out conditioner for this step, especially if you plan to still deep condition after you shampoo. You can also mix your conditioner with your favorite oil(s) for even more moisture.
8DIY Pre Poo Recipes
If you’re the DIY type, then you can easily whip up your own homemade pre poo using a combination of oils and moisturizing ingredients. One common combination is coconut milk, olive oil, and honey. These three ingredients will nourish dry hair and leave it silky and shiny. You can make an avocado pre poo mask by blending ripe avocado with olive oil, and/or coconut milk. Aloe vera juice, olive oil, and coconut oil is another great combo. Aside from water, aloe vera juice is one of the best natural moisturizers you can use, making it the perfect ingredient to add to your homemade pre poo recipe. Aloe vera gel (the fresh kind that you get straight from an aloe plant) is another great pre poo ingredient. You can combine it with an oil or use it on its own. Aloe vera gel works well as a detangler and it also helps moisturize and soothe dry scalp. These are just a few of the most common ingredients for homemade pre poo recipes, but the combinations are almost endless. Don’t be afraid to experiment with different combos until you find a recipe that’s just right.
9Pre Poo Pros And Cons
Naturally, there are both pros and cons to pre pooing. We’ve already covered most of the pros: extra moisture for thirsty strands, easier detangling, the ability to strengthen hair and prevent breakage. But there are a few cons as well. For one, pre pooing adds more time to your wash day routine, which for many, is already pretty time-consuming. Not only that, but believe it or not, there is such a thing as too much of a good thing, even when it comes to moisture. If you pre poo too often (especially in conjunction with regular deep conditioning), it’s possible to experience moisture overload. Hair needs to maintain a moisture-protein balance; not enough moisture and too much protein can leave your hair feeling dry and brittle and too much moisture and not enough protein can leave it feeling mushy and limp. The best way to avoid over-moisturizing your hair and ensure that the pros outweigh the cons is to use your best judgment and modify your routine until you find what works for you.
10Best Products For Pre Poo
There are lots of great products out there that you can use to pre poo your hair, however, you may have to experiment a little to find the ones that work best for you. As previously mentioned, extra virgin olive oil, coconut oil, jojoba oil, and castor oil are all popular pre poo products. If you prefer to pre poo with conditioner, a moisturizing, slippery rinse-out conditioner is your best bet. This will ensure that your hair gets the moisture it craves and it will also make detangling easier. SheaMoisture makes really great conditioners made with natural ingredients at affordable prices. So if you’re looking for a quality conditioner that won’t cost you an arm and a leg, this is a good brand to start with.
No matter how often you decide to pre poo, or which ingredients you decide to use, always pay attention to what your hair is trying to tell you. Keeping a hair journal is a great way to document which products and techniques you use each week and how your hair responds to them. Journaling will help you identify the products or combination of products that work best for your hair and make it easier to pinpoint products and specific ingredients that don’t agree with your hair. Whether you do it twice a month or once every few months, there’s sure to be a pre poo method that works for you. Don’t be afraid to be creative and come up with your own recipes.