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Whitening tricks for the tough yellow tail...

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  • Whitening tricks for the tough yellow tail...

    I've tried everything I can think of. EVERYTHING. Mare's tail is yellow-orange.

    I have tried super-strength bluing shampoo used for cattle, various soaps/shampoos/detergents/rinses/scrubs, soaking, shampoo'd multiple times, and all I end up with is a yellow (or green, with the blue shampoo) tail. I've had to paint her with Shapley's white touch up spray to make it look passable for shows.

    Any suggestions, other than letting her already pitiful tail grow out and cut off the stained part? It may take years.

  • #2
    Bleach. It removes the stain from the hair shaft. I myself personally* have used it with great results, maybe two or three times in a long show season, on tails for several greys and pintos. Gets them white for sure. I always followed with a conditioner made for people to help "seal" the hair shaft, and then just show sheened/laser sheened/cowboy magic'ed the crap out of it to put a protective silicone barrier over the hair to prevent more stain from setting in. Whatever bucket I was using to bathe with (Orvus), I'd had a glug glug (maybe another glug for nasty mare tails) of bleach to the water, dunk the tail and swish, scrub, dunk again and let it sit for, hmmm, five minutes or so? However long it took me to rinse and scrape the body, do another scrub on socks. And no, I never had a horse lose even a single tail hair or get scalded .

    * not hearsay in other words
    COTH's official mini-donk enabler

    "I am all for reaching out, but in some situations it needs to be done with a rolled up news paper." Alagirl


    • #3
      I like Quicksilver- horse whitening shampoo. If it's still stained after first application, repeat then rinse well.
      Another member recently said she used Goop first, then Clairol Glimmering Nights (bluing) and then WOW spray on whitener. I just located the WOW @ Smartpak but haven't used it yet.
      "There is no fundamental difference between man and animals in their ability to feel pleasure and pain, happiness, and misery." - Charles Darwin


      • #4
        If a tail is really bad, I spray with Oxy-Clean spray, soaking the hair, then tie it up for 5-10 minutes. Rinse thoroughly, then put QuickSilver in the tail thick enough to make it dark purple (takes a bunch!), then tie it up again while bathing the rest of the horse. It may take a few times a week to get it to look good for a show. I've had bad luck with laundry bluing & all turning my horse's tail green too
        Last edited by FoxChaser; Jul. 19, 2012, 05:35 PM.


        • #5
          Whatever shampoo you like best, plus liquid blueing. Not the kind for old lady hair, but the kind designed for laundry. You can buy it at most grocery stores, I think. I mix the shampoo and blueing in a 3:1 ratio and shake well.

          I wet the tail thoroughly, apply lots of shampoo/blueing mixture and massage in well. Let sit for up to 3 minutes (any longer and you risk a lavender tail) and rinse well. If there are still stubborn stains, I hit them again. When you have all the stains out, apply lots of conditioner and let it soak in for another few minutes. Rinse tail and apply whatever shine/detangle product you like.

          Keep the tail in a bag or braided as often as possible to prevent new stains. You could always try a clear shine glaze, too. They're permanent and seal the hair shaft. On a full size horse you would probably need two or three to do a tail.

          Personally, I would not go the bleach route, it's too easy to mess up and fry your horse's tail. It CAN work well, but I've also seen people leave it on for too long by accident and end up with a tail that looks like it belongs on an appy. Also, if your horse has super sensitive skin it can cause anything from flaking to massive chunks of skin peeling off.
          It is only through labor and painful effort, by grim energy and resolute courage, that we move on to better things.
          Theodore Roosevelt


          • #6
            Flax seed in addition to all the other tricks. Seriously--big grey broodmare that I had here came with the NASTIEST rust-red tail and once I put her on flax the new hair that grew in was SPARKLING white. You could see the line where the new hair grew in, and nothing I did to the older part of her tail ever made it look as nice as the new growth. 1 cup a day, unground.
            Click here before you buy.


            • Original Poster

              Originally posted by deltawave View Post
              Flax seed in addition to all the other tricks. Seriously--big grey broodmare that I had here came with the NASTIEST rust-red tail and once I put her on flax the new hair that grew in was SPARKLING white. You could see the line where the new hair grew in, and nothing I did to the older part of her tail ever made it look as nice as the new growth. 1 cup a day, unground.
              This is already part of my standard feeding program. And yes, the top looks nice and white/greyish, it's the bottom 2' that is orange-yellow.

              Bluing of any sort just seems to turn it green (or blue-green, if left long enough). We've tried bleach, and oxy-clean, too! Fortunately, the stained portion isn't near skin, there hasn't been any skin contact with the harsh products.

              I may just be stuck with covering it up until it grows out.


              • #8
                I wonder if you could dye it platinum blonde and go from there?
                Click here before you buy.


                • Original Poster

                  That might be something to look into. It would at least be more natural looking! It doesn't help that her tail is so sparse, either. Maybe I'll take a clipping or two and do some tests. Her tail is short, maybe mid-cannon, and thin, so it wouldn't be a major task if the results look good.


                  • #10
                    Try dish detergent, and let it soak.

                    I once had the terrible idea to use a new saddle on my white horse, without saddle pad. It stained him pink! A hell to take off, but the detergent did the trick!

                    Don't go cheap on it, use an expensive one. It really does matter!


                    • #11
                      I have seen laundry detergent, the liquid kind, meant for “heavy stains” do a good job on stained white tails. Dries the heck out of the hair, so lots of conditioning after, but it worked.
                      APPSOLUTE CHOCKLATE - Photo by Kathy Colman


                      • #12
                        On stained white show dogs, I used peroxide mixed with some Malox and cornstarch...Make a paste, brush it in, let it sit 15 mins or so and rinse..follow with conditioner and some protective spray..on horses something like show sheen etc..Might be worth a try on your horses tail if nothing else gets you the result you are looking for..it works great on the dogs.


                        • #13
                          Vinegar is my friend with my paint mare. I wash with regular shampoo, rinse, soak it in white vinegar for about 5 minutes, rinse then follow it up with Quic Silver shampoo, conditioner, then a silicone spray. Works like a charm!


                          • #14
                            Ive bleached hundreds of tails. Never had any problem. I only bleach the bottoms below the tail bone as that is where they get bad anyway.

                            First, I wash the uncombed tail in blue dawn dishsoap pretty well ( Might wash it twice if its really bad before bleaching)

                            Then I just dump a good dollop of bleach in the soapy tail below the tailbone. Yep, I know it creates a toxic gas (dont breathe it) BUT it also heats up in that chemical reaction and easily strips the pee and poop out of the hair shaft without damaging the hair. I scrub the hairs really well against each other kinda like im rolling playdough into a long snake with my hands. I start just below the tail bone down scrubbing it between my hands all the way down over and over to really get the hairs clean.

                            Rinse very very well and SLATHER in some pantene conditioner very liberally and comb the tail out carefully with the conditioner in it. Rinse and let dry. You will be amazed at how soft and clean the tail is after this.

                            I only do this on the worst tails maybe 2 or 3 times a year. Never had a problem with the horse or the hair. It works.

                            Dont wear good clothes when you do this.


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by tradewind View Post
                              On stained white show dogs, I used peroxide mixed with some Malox and cornstarch...Make a paste, brush it in, let it sit 15 mins or so and rinse..follow with conditioner and some protective spray..on horses something like show sheen etc..Might be worth a try on your horses tail if nothing else gets you the result you are looking for..it works great on the dogs.
                              Wait a minute, wait a minute did you say Malox and corn starch?

                              I love it, but why malox and corn starch?
                              RIP Kelly 1977-2007 "Wither thou goest, so shall I"

                              "To tilt when you should withdraw is Knightly too."


                              • #16
                                The Maox helps nuetralize the acidity that causes the staining. Then the peroxide, bleaches it..The cornstarch holds it on the hair plus acts like a whitener as well...


                                • #17
                                  It really does work great on white dogs, bitches in particular who pee on their pants etc..Think Samoyeds, Afghans, Maltese etc...It is a very old dog handler trick.


                                  • #18

                                    I have used this product on my grey's tail before. It did a great job of covering/removing some pretty yucky yellow spots in his tail.

                                    I would wash his tail with dawn a couple of times to REALLY get all the funk out and then apply this product. I was able to get it into the roots better by putting the product in a condiment bottle.


                                    • #19
                                      blue blob as in toilet blue blob leave it in water to for a tad then wash tail with fairy liquid with the blue blobby water then rinse in clean fresh water
                                      the horse tail will be white


                                      • #20
                                        Iodine shampoo works for me to clean up whites. it's a cleaner! you'll be surprised! Betadine scrub, or any iodine shampoo. Condition after