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The Dos And Donts Of Pre-Pooing Your Natural Hair


Are you tired of battling dry, brittle hair? Do you find that your natural curls are lacking shine and bounce? If so, pre-pooing might be the solution you've been searching for. As someone who has struggled with maintaining healthy natural hair, I can attest to the transformative powers of pre-pooing. However, there is a right way and a wrong way to approach this process.

In this article, we'll delve into the dos and don'ts of pre-pooing your natural hair. We'll start by discussing the purpose behind this step in your hair care routine and why it's so essential for maintaining healthy locks. From there, we'll cover everything from choosing the right products to proper application techniques to common mistakes to avoid. Whether you're a seasoned naturalista or new to caring for your textured tresses, our guide will provide valuable insight on incorporating pre-pooing into your regular regimen.

Table of Contents

Key Takeaways

  • Pre-pooing can combat dry, brittle hair, protect strands from harsh detergents, reduce breakage, and keep hair moisturized.
  • Leave-in conditioner, honey, or yogurt can be used as variations or alternatives to traditional pre-poo.
  • Recommended pre-poo products include coconut oil, aloe vera juice, honey, and avocado oil, while silicones and sulfates should be avoided.
  • Proper application techniques include using a wide-tooth comb, focusing on ends, and covering hair with a plastic cap or warm towel for at least 20-30 minutes before shampooing.

Understand the Purpose of Pre-Pooing

You'll want to know why pre-pooing is essential for your natural hair before you skip this crucial step in your hair routine! Pre-pooing involves conditioning your hair with oil or a combination of oils and other nourishing ingredients before shampooing. The purpose of pre-pooing is to protect your strands from harsh detergents in shampoos, reduce breakage during detangling, and keep your hair moisturized.

Benefits and drawbacks of pre-pooing vary depending on the type and condition of your hair. For example, if you have low porosity hair that tends to repel moisture, pre-pooing with heat can help open up the cuticles and allow nutrients to penetrate deeply into the strands. However, if you overdo it with heavy oils or use products that don't match well with your hair type, you may end up with greasy buildup or weighed-down curls. Variations and alternatives to traditional pre-poo include using a leave-in conditioner as a detangler or adding honey or yogurt for extra protein benefits. Choose the right products that suit your specific needs and preferences to get the most out of this nourishing step in your natural hair care routine.

Choose the Right Products

Make sure to select the appropriate products for your curls to achieve maximum benefits before washing. Not all products are created equal, and choosing the wrong ones can do more harm than good. When it comes to pre-pooing natural hair, it's important to choose products that are specifically tailored to your hair type and needs.

Product recommendations:

  • Coconut oil: Penetrates the shaft of the hair and reduces protein loss
  • Aloe vera juice: Hydrates and soothes the scalp while adding moisture to the hair
  • Honey: Acts as a humectant, drawing moisture into the hair
  • Avocado oil: Rich in fatty acids, deeply moisturizes and nourishes

Ingredient considerations:

  • Avoid silicones and sulfates as they can cause buildup on the scalp
  • Look for ingredients such as shea butter or olive oil which provide moisture without weighing down curls By taking these factors into account when selecting your pre-poo products, you'll be well on your way to achieving healthy, hydrated curls. As important as product choice is for pre-pooing, proper application techniques are equally crucial.

Proper Application Techniques

To achieve the best results, it's essential to apply your chosen pre-poo products correctly. This means using proper application techniques and recommended tools. Applying your pre-poo in a haphazard manner may not give you the desired outcome; instead, you risk damaging your hair.

When applying pre-poo, a wide-tooth comb is your go-to tool. It helps to detangle any knots in your hair and ensures that the product spreads evenly throughout all sections of your hair. Secondly, use gentle massaging motions to work the product into each strand from root to tip thoroughly. Don't forget about focusing on your ends as they are usually more prone to breakage and need extra attention. Lastly, cover your hair with a plastic cap or wrap with a warm towel for at least 20-30 minutes before shampooing as usual. These application tips will ensure that every inch of your hair is coated with the right amount of product for maximum effectiveness.

Next up: avoid common mistakes when pre-pooing natural hair.

Avoid Common Mistakes

It's like navigating a minefield when trying to achieve healthy and luscious hair with pre-pooing, but avoiding common mistakes can save you from major hair disasters. Here are some common misconceptions and best pre pooing methods to keep in mind:

  1. Don't apply the pre-poo to dirty or dry hair. This will prevent the product from properly penetrating your strands and providing the necessary moisture.
  2. Don't leave the pre-poo on for too long, as this can cause over-moisturization and lead to weak, brittle hair.
  3. Do use natural oils such as coconut oil or olive oil as your pre-poo base, as they have properties that can strengthen hair strands and protect against damage.
  4. Do use a wide-tooth comb to distribute the product evenly throughout your hair before washing.

By keeping these tips in mind, you'll be able to avoid common mistakes and achieve healthy, moisturized locks through pre-pooing. Incorporating this step into your regular routine is easy - simply apply the product before shampooing for maximum benefits.

Incorporate Pre-Pooing into Your Hair Care Routine

Revamp your hair care routine with this simple addition – pre-pooing – and watch as your locks become more hydrated, healthy, and vibrant. Pre-pooing is essentially the process of applying a conditioning treatment to your hair before shampooing. This step helps to protect your strands from the harsh stripping effects of shampoo while also providing extra moisture and nourishment.

The benefits of pre-pooing are numerous. Not only does it help to prevent breakage and damage, but it can also improve the overall health and appearance of your hair. The frequency of pre pooing will depend on your individual needs, but a good rule of thumb is once a week or every other week. Incorporating this step into your regular hair care routine can make a significant difference in the health and appearance of your natural hair.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can pre-pooing be done on chemically treated hair?

Oh, sure. You can pre-poo your chemically treated hair. In fact, it's highly recommended! The benefits of pre-pooing on relaxed hair are endless. Just make sure to use the right techniques for effective pre-pooing on chemically treated hair.

Can pre-pooing cause excessive build-up on the hair?

Pre-pooing can cause excessive build-up on the hair if not done correctly. Pros include added moisture, reduced breakage and detangling ease. Cons include weighing down of hair. Alternatives are co-washing or using a clarifying shampoo.

How often should pre-pooing be done?

Let's talk about how often you should pre-poo your natural hair. The frequency depends on your hair type and needs, but doing it regularly can provide numerous benefits like retaining moisture, reducing breakage, and promoting healthy growth.

Is it necessary to deep condition after pre-pooing?

Yes, it's highly recommended to deep condition after pre-pooing. This step helps to lock in moisture and nutrients from the pre-poo treatment. The benefits of pre-pooing include reduced breakage, increased hydration, and improved manageability. Some of the best oils for pre-pooing are coconut oil, olive oil, and avocado oil.

Can pre-pooing be done overnight or for an extended period of time?

Yes, overnight or extended pre-pooing can be beneficial for natural hair. It allows the pre-poo treatment to deeply penetrate and nourish the strands. However, make sure not to leave it on for too long as it may cause protein overload.


In conclusion, pre-pooing your natural hair can be a game changer in your hair care routine as it helps to protect and nourish your strands. By understanding the purpose of pre-pooing, choosing the right products, applying them properly and avoiding common mistakes, you can achieve healthier and stronger hair.

As Maya Angelou once said, "I've learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel." Therefore, when it comes to pre-pooing your natural hair, remember that the key is to make yourself feel good about taking care of your crown. Embrace this process as an act of self-love and enjoy the benefits of having healthy and beautiful hair.