DIY hair care: Pre-‘poo!

I know of several hair bloggers who regularly use a pre-‘poo AKA a pre-shampoo. The reason, from what I understand, is to protect your hair from the rigors of shampooing.

I would assume – rightly or wrongly – that if you co-wash, you shouldn’t really need to pre-‘poo. Conditioners shouldn’t strip your hair of natural oils and moisture and, therefore, it shouldn’t need any extra protection.

But then again, I am no expert, so do whatever works for you.

Since I’ve gone back to shampooing to deal with scalp issues due to build up and an overall miserable scalp, I’ve been pre-pooing.

At first, I just used olive oil and I wasn’t overly impressed. My hair didn’t feel any different after washing and detangling wasn’t any easier. When I took out my kinky twists, I pre-‘pooed using:

  • 2 parts conditioner (I used Tresemmé, I’m sure any good conditioner will work)
  • 1 part oil (I’ve used an olive oil/castor oil as well as an olive oil/grapeseed oil/flaxseed oil mix from Loblaws)

Next, I slather it on my hair and work it in. No combing – my hair isn’t ready for all of that just yet. I put on my plastic cap and leave everything for 30 minutes (some folks do it overnight, but I NEVER have that kind of time).

This, my friends has made a difference.

I think my hair’s overall health is much better today vs. six months ago thanks to a regimen (which needs to be updated) that I follow and the Healthy Ends Challenge I’m participating in.

I see the main difference in my ends – they are curling up with just some leave-in conditioner (a good leave-in, Giovanni Direct Leave-in Conditioner, unlike that dratted Infusium 23. Chupse). I’m seeing this at a time where I need a trim… although, I’m rethinking trimming until the next time I straighten my hair, which won’t be until April/May. We’ll see.

So, ladies, if your hair is relaxed, an oil of some kind – as long as it’s water-soluble (i.e. no mineral oil) will probably suffice. If you’re a naturalista with kinks and coils, mix some conditioner in there. If you’re transitioning, you may have to play around until you find the right combo.


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