What Is A Pre-Poo?

No, it's not a cute way to tell your child to get ready to go to the bathroom. It's actually a term used primarily by women with coily hair who have decided to go natural. It's simply applying a very heavy deep conditioner like coconut oil or honey and applying heat (body heat or heat from a blow dryer) for a certain amount of time prior to using a shampoo.

It seems a bit silly to deep condition when you're probably going to apply conditioner post washing, but for those with extra dry hair, it's a welcome addition to any hair care regimen. This is because shampoos that lather contain harsh sulfates that can strip even the most moisturized strands of its softness. It can be a hard to let go of your favorite shampoo (especially since the best smelling ones seem to be the ones with all the sulfates) and that's why it's a great idea to deep condition beforehand. 

If you'd like to keep things simple, you can just cover your hair with a plastic cap and let it sit for either 15 minutes or an hour. You can even do like a lot of women (and men) and leave the product on your head overnight. Just be sure to protect your pillowcase and bed sheets by using a headband or beanie to hold the plastic cap in place. I wouldn't recommend leaving honey in overnight unless you don't mind the sticky feeling.

Luckily for you, by adding a pre-poo session to your hair care regimen, you can keep the moisture in your strands and keep the awesome fragrance of your favorite shampoo.

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What Can You Use?

honey for a pre poo

Any product that provides your hair with moisture. Most opt for natural oils like coconut oil, olive oil, honey, and even canola oil. It's really up to you. You can even pre-poo by applying a store bought deep conditioner. The options are almost endless.

How To Apply Your Product

Now that you've chosen your product, you need to apply it. This can be done on dry or wet hair, but since most people doing this are planning on leaving the product in for a while prior to jumping in the shower, it's most common to apply it to dry hair.

  • Part your hair into 4 large sections
  • Apply the product to each section, starting with the ends of the hair
  • Place plastic cap over your entire head (if you're planning on sleeping on this, use a cloth hair band to place around the cap to hold it in place and put on another cap just to be sure you reduce movement while you're sleeping)

When you're ready to rinse the product out, rinse each section separately and gently squeeze your hair while under the shower head to ensure it's been thoroughly rinsed.


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Another Hair Benefit of Pre-Poo Treatments

pre-poo results

Consider pre-pooing just a double conditioning treatment. Instead of going straight to the shampoo, deep condition, shampoo, condition. It's also important to note that if you use a deep conditioning product that contains protein (like honey with eggs or coconut oil) then you'll notice your hair will hair a rough feeling.

If this is the case, make sure the regular conditioner you choose is moisturizing and in the future, try to experiment with the time you leave the pre-poo treatment in. If this is something you start doing on a regular basis, you'll notice your regular conditioner will work a lot better and your hair with shed less during your detangling sessions.

In the long run, your hair will be cleaner without being dry and more prone to breakage, all because you decided to learn a new term: pre-poo.