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Natural Hair 101: The Ultimate Natural Hair Dictionary: Part 2

Updated on February 22, 2016

A continuation of my hub. In that hub, which you can click to read here, I explained some of the most common terms that natural hair community converse in. Again if you haven’t check out that hub, feel free to check it out.

Anyway don’t you sometimes feel like natural hair girls are in their own little world; speaking in their own exclusive language that is at times difficult to comprehend?

Whether you are an outsider looking in or are a part of the natural hair community, don’t you sometimes get confused about a term, word, or phrase being used.

Even so, this is why I created this series, to help you understand the meanings of some of the most common words, phrases, techniques and acronyms used for natural hair. The main premise of this series is help define and explain things to new naturals and confused naturals. For this particular hub, I will be talking about the different techniques (such as dusting, pineappling, plopping, etc.) that are tossed around in conversation by the natural hair community. You can thank me later!!!!


Co-wash- this is a technique when you use a conditioner to wash your hair instead of a shampoo.

DC- this stands for deep conditioner. This is a treatment when you use a conditioner as a deep conditioning treatment by putting conditioner in your hair and leaving it on for an extended period of time. Usually heat is used (for the conditioner to penetrate moisture to the scalp), but some naturals don’t do that, but instead put a heating cap on.

CG- this is short for Curly Girl method which is a method created by Lorraine Massey. This method suggests co-washing, silicone (cones) avoidance and little to no use or shampoo.

Dusting- this method means to trim your hair ¼ of an inch or less. This nickname came out because the trimmed hair looks like falling dust on the floor.

Pre-pooing benefits
Pre-pooing benefits | Source

No-poo- this method means not using shampoo because of the harsh and toxic ingredients including silicones (most commercial shampoos use silicones). Instead of using shampoo many naturals use conditioner or an Apple Cider Vinegar (ACV) mix to wash their hair.

Pineappling- a technique that is meant to preserve and prolong curls styles (such as curlformers or flexi rod set) usually for overnight when you sleep. To do this you gather all your hair into a loose, high ponytail and either wrap with a satin head wrap or a satin pillowcase. The next day you take off the ponytail and shake it out.

Plopping- a hair drying technique, which is when you use a t-shirt, microfiber or terry cloth towel to gently dry your hair, instead of viciously rubbing a towel through your hair to dry it. It reduces hair drying time and is gentle on natural hair curls (which can be very fragile).
Pre-pooing- a technique where you pre-poo (pre/ before you shampoo) where you either deep condition or do an oil treatment on your hair. This is for the naturals that want to prepare the hair with extra moisture before shampooing their hair (shampoo often times strip the hair of its natural oils and is very drying for the hair)

Afro-textured Hair
Afro-textured Hair | Source
Don't let any one trim your ends!!!
Don't let any one trim your ends!!! | Source

Sealing-this techniques means to seal moisture in your hair. Usually naturals do this by applying a water-based product like conditioner or a cream and then sealing the hair with an oil or butter (like shea butter or castor oil). The oil/butter seals the moisture of the water-based product because the molecules in oils/butters are too big to pass into the hair

S&D- this method stands for search and destroy; where you search your hair for split ends and snip them out using hair scissors

Twist Out- a hair style where you unravel two strand twists (a hairstyle) to create a newer curly style. Your hair has looser, defined curls that you can wear for a couple of days. Similar to that is a braid-out

W&G- this is short for wash and go, a hair style where you wash your hair put a bit of product (such as gel or cream) and go, letting your hair either air dry or dry using a diffuser.

Plastic shower cap
Plastic shower cap | Source

Bagging- a technique where you moisturize your hair for an extended period of time. Typically you do this by applying a conditioner or oil treatment to your hair and covering your hair with a plastic shower cap or bag. You can do this for 30 minutes or all night.

Clarifying- a technique where you remove product buildup (from the products you use such as stylers, moisturizers, etc.) and dirt/oils from hair using do it yourself/DIY mixes (such as an ACV mix) or shampoo to clarify (clean) hair.

Oil rinsing- this is a technique after shampooing your hair and before conditioning your hair. You apply oil to your wet hair and leave it on for 5-10 minutes. This is mean to add extra moisture in your hair while detangling it further before using a conditioner.


I hope all this helps. This marks the end of The Ultimate Natural Hair Dictionary series. Thank You!!!!

What technique above helps you retain the most moisture in your hair?

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