I have to confess to owning and using Kiehl's Equine Shampoo for my horse...
Yes, it costs the earth but nothing else - even my expensive human salon shampoo that didn't work on my "new" hair - leaves his coat so smooth and shiny. Plus, he seems to like it, too, or at least he stands quieter for baths with it.
I do use Quicksilver or some human blue/purple shampoos on his white sock, though... And I don't do conditioner. I just put a dab of Cowboy Magic in my hand and run it through his tail (and if there's some left I smooth down my hair, too!).
I don't use conditioner on the manes (because I have to braid them) but I don't rinse it from the tail. I apply just a tiny tiny amount to the part below the tailbone, and then it goes back in its braid in the tailbag. The rest gets liberally coated with ShowSheen-esque products.
Suave shampoo and conditioner, all over. (Well, no conditioner below the knee on the front legs.) Two of my horses have large white stockings. There is lots of red clay in our pasture, and I've found that only the strawberry Suave shampoo will get the white areas clean. Expensive shampoo won't get it; dish soap won't get; even other Suave scents won't. But that strawberry stuff is awesome.
"If you can't walk with the big horses, stay in the stall!"
Orvus!! We've had our current "tub" for almost five years now and we're down to about a quarter left. Two of ours are black, so they are fairly easy to keep clean. It does a GREAT job of getting a white sock white again. We'll see how good it works on our gray soon enough.
Normally I use a horse shampoo since the ingredients in people shampoo has the propensity to dry out the hair and skin. I like the Corona a lot, it gets the job done and doesn't seem to be too drying to the coat, skin or tail- if a shampoo dries out the tail I don't use it again, it's my personal gauge of whether or not it's too harsh. I generally can tell right after the bath when the tail tries- if it has a 'grayish'/dull/starey look or feels brittle, that's my marker.
I have used Dove shampoos and conditioners in the past (like when I'm trying to use up an old bottle), and I do like that a lot. My only concen is whether the scents in the shampoos and conditioners (horse or human) will attract bugs or not. One of my old trainers told me she once used an apple-scented shampoo (people) on her horse and had bees chasing them around all day at the show they went to
The best I've ever used was a shampoo called Hylyte, which is hard to find unless you get it through a vet or order it online. It's not horribly super-expensive, but it does cost more than some of the other shampoos (horse or human).
Hylyte is a glycerin-based, soap free shampoo, which is really great for the horse's coat (and can be used on any animal too) and more importantly, skin. It doesn't dry it out, it doesn't strip anything out of the skin or hair (like all the oils that need to be there!!!) and it brings up a luster in the coat that I've not found in any other shampoo: it looks healthy with a "bloom," not fuzzy with a silicone shine. Also, it lasts a long time- it must be concentrated, because it doesn't take much to get the job done. Oh, and since it's soap-free I can use it on his face and I don't worry about it getting in his eyes. It's perfect all around!!!
As a matter of fact, I'm half tempted to use it on my own hair after seeing how good it made Reese look
Originally Posted by Martha Drum
...But I don't want to sit helmetless on my horse while he lies on the ground kicking a ball around without a bridle while Leatherface does an interpretive dance with his chainsaw around us.
ANYTHING THAT WORKS!!! My pink skinned, white TB gelding is the KING of Camoflage!! He takes mud and poop scrub baths to a new level! I've found that a cheap, wholesale shampoo (human) works quite well as does Wisk clothes soap or anything with blueing in it. For non-obscene horses we used to use Palmolive dish soap with good results.