What is a Pre-Poo?

While travelling the online natural hair community, you may see the word ‘pre-poo’ floating around. What the hell is a pre-poo? How do you pre-poo? What benefits does it have for your hair? I’ll attempt to answer these questions to the best of my ability, as I just started pre-pooing recently myself.

What is a Pre-Poo? A pre-poo is basically a way of conditioning your hair before you shampoo. When you shampoo your hair, your hair tends to get stripped of its natural oils. When you pre-poo, you’re adding an additional protective layer over your strands that prevents them from getting stripped totally bare. In my personal experience, I find that pre-poo’ing also helps with softening my hair and detangling.

What do you need to pre-poo? There are multiple ways that you can pre-poo. You can:
·         Use essential oils,
·         Make your own mixtures,
·         Buy products marketed as pre-poo.

Personally, I’ve decided to keep it simple and am sticking to essential oils. I am making a conscious effort to include castor oil in my hair regimen (I want to eventually start a personal castor oil challenge) so I’ve been pre-pooing with castor oil. The first time I used it along with olive oil; the second I combined it with argan oil. I liked the results I received from both to be honest. I know that different oils have different benefits, so depending on what I need or how I’m feeling I’ll switch it up.

I made a pre-poo mixture once, containing olive oil and honey. I put the mixture into the microwave for about 15 seconds and applied. In hindsight the honey was really thick in my hair, and I don’t remember an easier detangling process. However, you can go on youtube and find tons of different pre-poo concoctions you can make at home.
In buying products, you just have to read and see if it can be used as a pre-poo. I know that the Indian Hemp and Tamanu Grow and Strengthen Treatment Masque(link) that I have can be doubled as a pre-poo, but I just haven’t tried it yet. Also, I believe that Deva Curl makes a pre-poo. It’s up to you if you want to spend the money.
How do you pre-poo? Doing a pre-poo is like the easiest thing in the world. All you have to do is:
1.       Part your hair into sections (this makes my wash day so much shorter!)
2.       Apply your pre-poo mix (whether oils, mixture, or product) into your hair. Massage into roots and distribute through strands of hair.
3.       Put on a shower cap and leave this mixture on your head anywhere from 20 minutes to overnight.
Yep, that’s it. I have been putting my pre-poo on dry hair as opposed to wet. Sometimes Idon’t detangle before I pre-poo; I wait until I get in the shower and condition. Neither one of these circumstances has had any negative effect on my hair.
Do you HAVE to pre-poo? No of course not. There are people out there that have never pre-poo’d a day in their life and have long, thick, healthy, beautiful hair. A pre-poo isn’t a necessary part of your regimen, because if it was we probably would have always known about it- similar to shampoo and conditioning. If you’re a newer transitioner or natural, I would even suggest skipping this step altogether because you have so much other information to wrap your head around. However, if you shampoo often, or use a shampoo with harsher ingredients and want to help protect your hair from that dry “overly clean” feeling, then you should try a pre-poo.
I hope this helped! I really wanted to write this because there are a lot of “key words” that bloggers throw around that people who are new to their hair journey may not understand. And since I’m fairly new myself, I want to share the things that I’m learning every day.
Do you pre-poo? How often? What is your pre-poo experience like?