I’ve touched here and there on how I pre-poo and why it’s important for natural hair types, but I have yet to really dive into the art of the pre-poo and how to master it. Pre-pooing is basically a guard that we use to block any damage that may occur during the washing process. When we shampoo, co-wash or add lots of water into our hair, it expands to make room for the extra water. Then when we dry our hair the opposite occurs – it contracts. When this process is repeated wash day after wash day, it can become extremely damaging causing brittle strands and split ends. Kinky curly hair types tend to take in more water, making it more prone to this kind of damage if the proper precautions are not taken. I’ve become the self-proclaimed pre-poo queen over the past year of my journey and my hair is not only stronger and healthier, but I’ve been able to combat dryness which is hard to do especially with 4c hair – but what ingredients should you use to concoct a bomb pre-poo you ask? Well, I have 3 favorite pre-poos and they can all be made from things you have lying around the house.
- Honey & Olive Oil Mask
The honey mask is one of my favorite pre-poos to use because it’s super moisturizing and I always have the ingredients on hand which makes it super convenient. The humectant properties of honey strengthen the hair strands helping to regulate and retain moisture in the hair follicles. Olive oil, made up of monounsaturated amino fatty acids is a natural hair softener which also aids in strengthening the hair. This duo can combat even the dryest curls!
2. Aloe Vera Scalp Treatment
This treatment is something new I recently tried after seeing a Youtube video by Naptural85. For this DIY pre-poo all you need is an aloe vera leaf, I got mine at the grocery store for around $1. I ended up slicing and scooping out my gel into a bowl, but you can take your slices and apply them directly to your scalp. The aloe plant contains proteolytic enzymes that help repair dead skin cells on the scalp, promote hair growth and prevents dandruff. I will then go in with a mixture of any oils I have on hand to coat the length of my hair to complete this prepoo.
3. Coconut Oil Mask
I know coconut oil is a nightmare to some naturals but did you know coconut oil is an amazing pre-poo treatment? I personally don’t have an issue with coconut oil, but many naturals complain that it causes their curls to feel crispy and dry due to the overload of protein coconut oil is packed with. However, in this instance, it protects the hair follicle by penetrating under the cuticle when the hair swells during the “wetting” process, resulting in less contracting and reducing the chances of damage. And since we are washing it right out, you reap all the benefits without dealing with any crunch. So, if you’re a natural who runs from coconut oil give it a chance as a pre-poo on your next wash day and it may creep back into your regimen!