We have a lovely bay mare with a big bald face and pink skin around her eyes and muzzle. She's cute as a button, but I have a hell of a time keeping her face from looking like she just stuck it up a chimney or something. I don't seem to have this issue with all my greys and palominos (I think it must be their black skin vs pink skin).
She's a little shy with her face, so she's not someone I can scrub with soap and water. She does now let me (kinda) gently hose it off, and I curry the snot out of it every day, and always rub it well with a clean towel after I've sprayed it off. Some days I can get after it with a little bit of Cowboy Magic on a towel, but if she smells it, she's leery. I also found that keeping a fleece on the nose of her leather halter keeps the halter from turning her nose black. Obviously, a clean bridle keeps it from staining, too, though she gets epic bridle marks.
But, she has some ground in stains around her eyes and nostrils that seem impossible to get off! Any one have any tricks or thoughts on how to get her clean and keep her that way?
I have a chestnut tobiano mare with a big white blaze. Entire body is pink skinned. Super sensitive to many chemicals. For the face I curry and brush. I also use a soft damp rag to wipe her face. She's just getting to the point where I can shampoo her face. Baby shampoo. I don't shampoo regularly as I don't want to strip protective oils or cause her to get itchy. For a show I'll use a small amount of ShowSheen or something similar as a dirt blocker. She rubs or gets marks from halter or bridle unless they are super clean. Fleece is your friend. Obviously you know this. The doggie section of WalMart also has the tear stain remover. My mare has a big pink muzzle. Thankfully she doesn't get that too dirty. Instead she will sunburn if not protected or get dew poisononing just so I feel useful.
I have a Paint gelding with mostly bald face. He has a lot of "eye makeup" around his eyes, but the rest is all white. I won't clip his face or muzzle at all because I think that this removes protection for the pink skin from sunburn. I've used baby wipes and they are quick and easy. On the few occasions when he gets a bath (we don't show) I'll use a damp sponge with the white horse formula shampoo and that seems to do okay. We use Coppertone Sport sunblock and that works great on his muzzle and nostrils and doesn't make his face dirty.
APHA people will use a 10# blade and shave the face. If you can't put sunscreen or a fly mask on then this isn't a good solution, but if either of those things is possible then it'll make your life a lot easier. Less hair to hold the dirt!
I keep my mare's bald face clipped as much as possible and keep a fly mask on in the summer to prevent sunburn. I am lucky, she is mellow and will let me wash her face, so I just use Quicksilver every few weeks and before a show and she stays nice and white. I do use a hood at shows to keep her face and neck clean.