A Natural’s Recipe for Successfully Flat Ironed Hair

by West Parsons on May 24, 2012 · 35 comments

in hair care, hair styles, straight hair

Patchouli85 is owed100% credit for revealing the mystery concept many of us Naturals were clueless about when it came to successfully flat ironing natural hair for smooth, silk, body and bounce. It’s all in the pre-poo! Below you’ll find her YouTube tutorial on the steps she takes before flat ironing her hair.  Watching the video you will find the manner in which the product is applied,  how long the product is left on the hair and where this step occurs in your regimen makes a huge difference.

Like many, I never understood the purpose of deep conditioning your hair before shampooing… until I garnered the same silky-straight results as Patchouli85.

Check out the ingredients of Patchouli’s pre-poo!

Ingredient’s Listed in Video
Elasta QP Intense Fortifying Hair Conditioning Treatment
Optimum Oil Therapy
Coconut Oil
Camelia Oil
Jojoba Oil

Pictured below is my hair when using Patchouli’s method. Though this was a few years ago, when following the same steps, it’s a tried and true method! The base conditioner for my pre-poo is Silk Elements Mega Silk Moisturizing Treatment and I am always sure to add coconut oil — whenever I omit, the result is not as great.

Wonder what my hair looked like before I started pre-pooing before using heat?  Look here.

READ MORE: I Straightened My Hair. I like It But! (2012 Flat Iron Update)

Other Helpful Articles
Pre-Poo 101: Why You Must Do This Each Wash Day
7 Things You Should Have Before Flat Ironing Natural Hair
How To| Prevent Heat Damage When Flat Ironing Natural Hair
I Straightened My Hair. I like It But! (2012 Flat Iron Update)

Video Tutorials
How To| Straighten Natural Hair
How To| Avoid Heat Damage
How To| Prepare Natural Hair for Silky Straight Results
My Wash Day Regimen (detangle, deep condition, deep co-wash)

Now, will you consider pre-pooing?



nika May 24, 2012 at 9:12 pm

Thanks for sharing.
I’ve never seen those pics from her video. How long doe the silkiness last?
Do you know her? 🙂 Thanks!

westNDNbeauty May 24, 2012 at 10:40 pm

Hey Nika! No I don’t know her. I found that very video online some years ago, tried her technique and was forever greatful to have found it. I do wish she would make more videos though.

AmeeraNakisha May 24, 2012 at 9:49 pm

I’m going to try this next wash day! Although, I may not flat iron for a few more months.

Question, once you achieve that silkiness, what is the up keep, meaning how do you moisturize while it’s straight or do you even need to?

westNDNbeauty May 24, 2012 at 10:44 pm

Hi AmeeraNakisha,
Typically I don’t feel the need to moisturize once my hair is flat ironed. If I do add product it would usually be jojoba oil once or twice sometime in the week.

But if the conditioning process is done right from the beginning and you are wrapping or curling at night, you probably will not need anything throughout the week. But if you do, spring for an oil/butter and avoid creams if possible.

AmeeraNakisha May 25, 2012 at 6:39 pm

Cool. I’ll definitely try this in the future. Both her hair and yours, looks better than perm silky and while I generally wear my hair curly, when I do straighten it, I want it to look good.
Thanks for the tip!

Janelle S May 24, 2012 at 10:10 pm

Most definitely! This is probably the most convincing argument for me concerning prepoo. I’m currently growing out heat damage, done by me and hairstylists. I wasn’t aware of using the absolute minimal amount of heat on your hair to straighten it. I was mostly guilty of the daily flat ironing around the edges that I felt it needed so I can maintain it. I’m currently on heat strike but this gives me hope for the future! Thank you for letting us know! Question: What do you do to maintain it without heat? Especially if you live in a humid, hot climate or want to work out?

westNDNbeauty May 24, 2012 at 10:52 pm

Hey Janelle,
Straight hair + Work Out + Humidity is a FRIZZY equation. Typically I only straighten during winter months and I avoid the gym for the first 3-4 days if I am wearing it in a silky straight style. When heading back to the gym I opt for a curled, straightened hair. You can bantu knot (can be worn while working out), add flexi rods or perming rods. This adds a little spice and variety to straightened hair. When I go to the gym I wear a sweatband I bought from Target (not those cottony ones). Once the sweat dries, my edges are layed. When going to bed I follow with a scarf, making sure that my edges are completely covered so my edges continue to lay while I sleep.

Janelle S May 25, 2012 at 7:45 am

Ok sounds like a plan! Guess I will be waiting until the fall! Thanks for the info!

CLV May 24, 2012 at 10:42 pm

Nice! Will try this. Thanks:)

Guyanesesista May 25, 2012 at 6:55 am

Yup pre-pooing does yield great results. I however am to lazy to go through all that, it’s just so much stuff. I know I know I’m bad. )-:

Lin May 25, 2012 at 5:41 pm

Yes, I will after seeing these pics. Just one question though, what temperature setting do you suggest using to flatiron?

westNDNbeauty May 26, 2012 at 1:55 pm

I flat iron on 400 degrees for most sections of my hair with ONE pass only. The less delicate sections are done on 375.

Patricia D May 26, 2012 at 6:05 pm

I definitely am inspired to pree poo BUT I have given up on flat iron my hair long ago. There are too many ways to go wrong (cheap flat iron, too high temp, low quality heat protection spray, etc.) Looks good though.

Melanie May 27, 2012 at 9:36 am

Okay! I did this and let’s just say I am SOLD!!!! I rinsed and washed out the pre-poo and then added my conditioner. OMG! I am never able to finger detangle, but I did today. My curls are popping like never before! I can’t wait to rinse and wash my daughters hair. Thanks so much! Maybe next week, I will do this and flat iron. I used Giovanni hydrating conditioner this time, but I hope I get the same results with a cheaper conditioner.

Vonnie May 27, 2012 at 5:08 pm

West, I am a long time reader of your blog and watcher of your your tube videos-but first time commenter! I tried this method yesterday and it works. I had a jar of Lustrasilk cholesterol aloe on hand and used this for my pre-poo. I left it on my hair for three hrs, wash, conditioned and let my hair air dry. I blow dried, then flat ironed in small sections. Silky hair! I normally pay for my blow outs but it good to know I can do it on my own.
I take note of your product reveiws because our hair types are similar. Thanks for taking the time to provide such useful information.

TG May 31, 2012 at 7:12 pm

I agree deep conditioning makes ALL the difference!! Patchouli85 hit it on the head w/this!!

TG May 31, 2012 at 7:14 pm

I forgot to add—steaming has also helped me tremendously!! Silkiness and shine like nobody’s business!

blueisis02 July 22, 2012 at 6:43 pm

I usually pre-poo, but I don’t normally straighten. Soooooo, I pre-poo’d overnight, and decided to do a blow out. Moisture really does make the difference. My blowout was REALLY silky and straight! That’s the first time that has happened! So for the heck of it, I decided to straighten. I was in awe of how straight it came out on the 1st pass! Thanks for all the links & help!

westNDNbeauty July 22, 2012 at 9:46 pm

No problem Doll!

Lin July 23, 2012 at 3:16 pm

Looks good. I will be trying this out in the Fall : )

JB October 10, 2012 at 7:13 pm

Does this work for people who are transitioning? I am currently 6 months post relaxer.

westNDNbeauty October 10, 2012 at 11:23 pm

Yup. I don’t see why it would not.

Ashten Houseman October 15, 2012 at 8:29 am

I’d like to try this treatment on my 5 year old daughter is there any specific way for the flat iron portion of the straightening. Thanks to anyone who replies ,for certain occasions she wants to see her hair straight and the times we’ve done it has always poofs.

westNDNbeauty October 15, 2012 at 5:03 pm

Hi Ashten! Here is a link to my flat ironing video – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ffjZQQIGelg

Tiffany October 26, 2012 at 2:19 pm

I could kiss you right now!!!!!!! i tried this last night and slept with it in overnight, the results are amazing!!!

westNDNbeauty October 26, 2012 at 3:41 pm

Yay! I’m glad it worked for you! What was in your mixture?

Carla October 26, 2012 at 6:58 pm

Yes, I like this method. I have tried many things and will say that a prepoo prepares the hair well for a flat iron. I already use coconut oil and a creamy conditioner, but I am going to try this recipe next time.

K November 3, 2012 at 10:43 pm

I will have to try this next time…haven’t watched the vid yet, but from the pics, the hair is georgous!

Madiesm March 27, 2013 at 1:06 pm

I sweat from my scalp especially when I am active or sleeping. I do not sweat a lot or where it is noticeable or abnormal. Just enough to interfere with naturally straighten hair. My natural hair straightened is gone the moment I take a shower or bath from steam. I don’ think this will work for those that sweat from the scalp.

carla s. May 16, 2013 at 3:03 pm

hey, i just checked out your you tube video….i planned on flat ironing my hair in a few days im glad i watched the video i never understood the benefits of pre pooing until now……question? do you put anything else on your hair before your blow dry or flat iron?

westNDNbeauty May 19, 2013 at 4:51 pm

I do use a liquid moisturizer called Nioxin Thermal Bliss. It is applied just before blow drying. Nothing else after that.

Victoria October 13, 2013 at 3:39 pm

Did you also blow your hair before you straightened it? If so how did you do it? Because she has a video where she does her blow out before flat ironing but I don’t know how to blow out hair until it’s nearly straight.

westNDNbeauty October 14, 2013 at 12:43 pm

Hi Victoria,
My youtube channel (@wwestndnbeautyy) has a video tutorial on how I straighten my hair from start to finish.

Natasha March 25, 2015 at 1:38 am

Hello, I’m not sure if you’re still answering questions for this post, but I was wondering… After rinsing out the pre-poo, do you wash with regular shampoo, then follow up with conditioner again ( as you would during a traditional shampoo and conditioner)?

West Parsons March 31, 2015 at 11:17 pm

Sure. The link included in the post “I I straightened My Hair & I like It But…” has a bit more info about the steps and products involved.