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Spring cleaning... Getting those white parts WHITE!

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  • Spring cleaning... Getting those white parts WHITE!

    So, since spring is around the bend, and filthy horses are going to start needing to be sparkly for shows despite the mud and winter yick, I decided to start a thread on getting the white parts of our horses WHITE! I have a dirty, furry little leopard appy that's going to be needing some major whitening soon, if you're wondering why I spent the time putting this together... Haha. Also, I love love a sparkling clean horse and really freakishly enjoy grooming when I've left myself enough time. I find it to be a somehow calming experience for me - just focus on getting that dirt out, keeps the stress down, haha.

    I know there have been threads on this before, so I thought I'd sum up the recommendations I've seen and get some comments = )

    So here's what I've come up with from perusing the threads, please offer new recommendations or comment on the ones I've listed. If there's a particular brand you've used, please tell us what it is and where you get it.

    Also, a lot of these treatments were recommended specifically for tails or the ends of tails where the harshness wouldn't matter quite so much.

    ***Please be careful if you decide to use some of the weirder non-horse/people formulated stuff.

    Okay, heeeere we go!

    Laundry detergent/spotter:
    ~Wisk
    ~Biz
    - users have commented that these leave the tail pretty coarse, so conditioning is a must

    Orvus: the old standby for all over
    ~Many use this as step number one to get the worst of the dirt out before using the more extreme methods;
    ~Some have mentioned it's a little bit harsher than people shampoo, so they only use it for the first wash of the season
    ~I personally tend to use this for most washes where I actually use soap

    People shampoo for light colored or blonde dyed hair:
    ~Clairol Shimmer Lights
    ~The Sally Beauty brand that is the same idea

    Rinse for people hair (generally for white/grey hair):
    ~Fancifull - Ultra White Minx; contains a toner that apparently helps knock out the yellow

    People hair dye:
    ~One user apparently had their hairstylist come out and dye a really nasty tail! Probably works if it's legal and your stylist is your buddy, haha.

    Laundry bluing:
    ~Use gloves! Apparently this will stain hands; for the same reason, do NOT leave on your horse for too long
    ~I've never personally used this on horse or laundry so I have no idea of brands or even where you get this (I'm guessing where you get detergent, haha)

    Oxiclean:
    ~Warning - users have said this gets pretty hot when mixed with water and might get your horse a little antsy; also should be tested in a small area before use in case it causes a reaction...
    ~Probably not something to be used except in very extreme cases from what I've read and should be followed by conditioner always

    Vinegar:
    ~Should be diluted in water (not sure how much; I haven't tried this one)
    ~Dunk tail in and let soak for a bit, then rinse
    ~Best if used after a thorough shampoo
    ~I've used this to clean out coffee pots, and it definitely has clarifying properties

    Dish soap:
    ~Super cheap and highly recommended from what I've read around here
    ~Dawn
    ~Ivory

    Baking Soda:
    ~Work shampoo into a lather first, then work in baking soda and let sit for a bit

    Simple Green:
    ~A natural household cleaner type product (haven't used it on anything, so not sure exactly what it does)
    ~Pretty harsh, so some would not recommend its use

    Greased Lightning: Degreaser...
    ~Not sure exactly how this works, and I'd imagine it's also pretty harsh

    Blue horse shampoo:
    ~QuickSilver - there are a lot of these, but this one seems to be used most
    ~Some people feel the people shampoo is stronger, some feel the horse shampoo is harsher... You decide = )

    Betadine Scrub:
    ~Yep, it's red/orange, and I'm a little leary, but there are people who SWEAR it leaves your horse sparkly white! I'd really like to hear some comments about this

    Also, I know some people swear by certain supplements added to feed. Any thoughts?

    I'm sure I've missed some techniques y'all use, so please add. Hope this thread helps in your spring cleaning = )
    Last edited by bort84; Feb. 4, 2009, 10:00 PM.

  • #2
    You know, I was actually DREAMING the other night that I was giving my horse a bath. <sigh>

    But the temp this morning was -20F/-29C and the wind was even colder.

    Last year it snowed right through May.... so I'm trying not to think about spring yet....

    I'll check back in on your thread in 3 months or so
    Jigga:
    Why must you chastise my brilliant idea with facts and logic? **picks up toys (and wine) and goes home**

    Comment

    • Original Poster

      #3
      Originally posted by saultgirl View Post
      You know, I was actually DREAMING the other night that I was giving my horse a bath. <sigh>

      But the temp this morning was -20F/-29C and the wind was even colder.

      Last year it snowed right through May.... so I'm trying not to think about spring yet....

      I'll check back in on your thread in 3 months or so
      Haha, I feel your pain. I grew up in the Chicago area, and it wasn't guaranteed to be warm until the end of May, and even then, July was a safer bet... I remember being at a show in AUGUST and having to go home to get winter blankets so that our slick horses wouldn't freeze because the temp dropped about 50 degrees on night... Crazy weather!

      I've since moved south (New Orleans and now Houston), and I just can't imagine going back! Haha. So my guy is already starting to drop his hair... I'm sorry = (

      Comment

      • Original Poster

        #4
        I guess I may have posted this too soon... Must be the Houston weather warming up; maybe I jumped the gun = )

        Comment


        • #5
          I'm dying for a way to get my gray horse's tail white without ruining it, but even the quicksilver isn't quite cutting it

          Comment

          • Original Poster

            #6
            Ugh, I know... My guy has a sparse little appy tail to begin with, so I like to get it looking as sparkly as possible. I think I'm going to try the shampoo+baking soda/rinse/then vinegar/condition... Oh, and then I'm really intrigued about putting some rinse in it (it's called Fancifull White Mink, who can resist that for 5 bucks? And I think it's pretty gentle too since it's for people hair).

            Comment


            • #7
              Many years ago, after home hair coloring went bad I was sobbing in a local hair salon, praying they could turn my blond hair back to blond from brownish with green highlights :O
              They put some soapy stuff on my head, wrapped with food wrap and put me under the blowdryer for 30 minutes. My hair went back to blond and the stuff they used was Matrix Alternate Action shampoo.
              http://www.matrixbeautiful.com/produ...g_shampoo.aspx
              I still use it once a week to get rid of all build up from numerous products I use and to make the highlights shinier.
              Now, being a happy owner of a gray horse with with white socks and half of the tail being white, same shampoo makes him sparkly!
              I swear by it, none of the other stuff ever made him really white. And he is a horse who looooves to get dirty and sleeps with his face in a manure pile. Matrix does not only get him white, it also removes a lot of copper from his bleached summer coat.
              I put the shampoo on his socks, soap it up and run in, then do the tail, leave everything in, and then leather up his other parts (usually with a different shampoo.) Once I am done whole newly clean horse is ready to be rinsed.

              Ambrey, give it a shot! I do not use conditioners for my guy's tail as he gets flakes easily, but use detangler afterwards and the hair looks and feels great.

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by Equus_girl View Post
                I swear by it, none of the other stuff ever made him really white. And he is a horse who looooves to get dirty and sleeps with his face in a manure pile. Matrix does not only get him white, it also removes a lot of copper from his bleached summer coat.
                I put the shampoo on his socks, soap it up and run in, then do the tail, leave everything in, and then leather up his other parts (usually with a different shampoo.) Once I am done whole newly clean horse is ready to be rinsed.

                Ambrey, give it a shot! I do not use conditioners for my guy's tail as he gets flakes easily, but use detangler afterwards and the hair looks and feels great.
                Thank you! I also have a manure sleeper- EEEEEW!

                I finally got him a fly sheet and have been so happy that it's kept him fairly clean- except his tail

                Comment


                • #9
                  Some horses just cannot help themselves. Mine also HATES taking showers and water in general, but always up to sleeping in manure and rolling in dirt and mud :O
                  http://public.fotki.com/equusanya/20...8/img0765.html
                  http://public.fotki.com/equusanya/20...8/img0808.html

                  Ambrey, let me know what you think of the shampoo once you get a chance to try. Quicksilver did not help me either, and pricewise its the same. You can always get a good deal online as not many beauty supply stores seem to carry it.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Hmm,I have a leopard appy - and I use plain old whatever shampoo is in my bathroom that day. And he comes out pretty sparkly.

                    And spring IS not around the corner - there's 4ft of snow here yet dammit! Don't rush me
                    Originally posted by ExJumper
                    Sometimes I'm thrown off, sometimes I'm bucked off, sometimes I simply fall off, and sometimes I go down with the ship. All of these are valid ways to part company with your horse.

                    Comment

                    • Original Poster

                      #11
                      Originally posted by rainechyldes View Post
                      Hmm,I have a leopard appy - and I use plain old whatever shampoo is in my bathroom that day. And he comes out pretty sparkly.

                      And spring IS not around the corner - there's 4ft of snow here yet dammit! Don't rush me
                      Haha, again, my apologies for the spring comment... My guy is already starting to drop his winter coat... These southern winters have made me SOFT (grew up in the Chicago area, brr).

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        So where does one PURCHASE Orvus? And how does one prepare it? I just purchased a LOVELY filly to be my eventing partner...and *sigh* She's WHITE. 3yrs and completely white with gray points on her legs, and light gray mane...I think I'm masochistic, but she's just an amazing filly! And right now, she's truly brown! Any good tips for the pasture kept "white" horse?

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Orvus comes in a big jug. You can get it just about anywhere. http://www.doversaddlery.com/orvus-p...-2259/cn/2009/

                          You just scoop some out with your hand, and either put it in a bucket and dilute w/water or put it directly on the horse. It's a thick, gel-like consistency, not runny like shampoo.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            I'm not a grey/white horse owner, although I have bathed a few and feel for those of you who have to spend hours getting them sparkly clean before shows, only to have your horse find someway to poop or pee on themselves, or roll in it or you just cant get that famous red clay dirt stain out.

                            Personally I have never used Orvus, but many many 4-h people who show cows swear by it and I've heard that it works just as well on horses.

                            I have mahoghany bay with a lot of white and I use Wonder Blue shampoo what can be purchased at Tractor supply for fairly cheap. I dont dilute, just put it directly on the socks scrub with a gentle scrubber ( I purchased a soft, plastic scrubber for pots/dishes made by Libbman at the grocery store. It is not the brillo type sponges, but has a round head filled with soft flexible white bristles and has a long handle great for grip) and let sit for a few minutes (the dirt will lift and rise to the coat surface), and rinse. It works great! It also smells great. It is not an intense blueing shampoo so it wont stain your hands or the white hairs, but gets them equally as white as the blueing shampoos.

                            I let the coat airdry and spray with Eqyss coat replenishing spray, let air dry and brush with a soft finishing brush. There doesnt seem to be as much dirt and grime after that. I dont care for Showsheen sprayed on a freshly bathed horse because I feel like after a few days, it just leaves the coat dull and grimey. I only use showsheen asa detangler for really bad knots. My girls coat is naturally shiny so dont need it for that either.

                            As far as tails go, I've heard and have tried using the cheap fabric softner, directly on the tail diluted with water. It removes a lot of dirt as you rinse, leaves the tail tangle free and static free. I dont know about its whitening properties though. I generally use the same shampoo for everything and condition with Cholestrol.

                            So my vote is for Wonder Blue shampoo...give it a try. Its not a harsh shampoo and in my experience doesnt dry the skin or hair out. If you are concerned with drying, rinse with vinegar to neutralize the shampoo. I dont think vinegar has any whitening properties though.
                            Crayola Posse~Aquamarine
                            Love vs Money...for the love of my horse, I have no money!

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Currently have a tobiano so I feel the pain of constant cleaning. DermaBen SS pet shampo by DermaPet really gets the white parts white. It contains benzoyl peroxide but is gentle with a high concentration of vitamin E. Not sure I'd use it all the time but it works! Gets rid of flaky skin stuff too. I use a grocery store mushroom brush to really work it in.

                              Comment


                              • #16
                                Actually, this is really simple. The secret is to buy a horse that doesn't want to get him (or her) self dirty.
                                My horse is chestnut with socks on all 4's that go to the knee and hock. He hates getting dirty. Only poops in one spot in his stall and will wait all day until I take him out to ride after work to pee. In fact the BO said he was the first horse she had ever seen that she actually thought she needed to hose his stall since it is so dry. In addition he will NEVER step in poop while riding.
                                See? It's pretty easy if you can just do the above.
                                Some days the best thing about my job is that the chair spins.

                                Comment


                                • #17
                                  Oh, yes, that's a simple solution!

                                  My palomino is actually a pretty tidy little guy- but he isn't the one with white all over him!

                                  Comment


                                  • #18
                                    Oxy-clean will make your horse's tail fall out if you use it to whiten a tail. Kid sister found that out the hard way. Once or twice is probably OK, but I would follow it with a deep conditioner (think conditioner for dry/damaged human hair) and then a leave-in conditioner like Infusium.

                                    I use Ivory soap for most of my whitening. It won't leave the same silver sheen as QuicSilver, but it removes stains, isn't too hard on the hair coat, and is cheap.

                                    When you're using baking soda, follow it up by rinsing with white vinegar, then water. The vinegar will foam all the dirt to the top so it can be easily rinsed off. I've only tried this on socks, but it works really well.
                                    "I'm not always sarcastic. Sometimes I'm asleep." - Harry Dresden

                                    Amy's Stuff - Rustic chic and country linens and decor
                                    Support my mom! She's gotta finance her retirement horse somehow.

                                    Comment


                                    • #19
                                      Originally posted by WB Mom View Post
                                      Actually, this is really simple. The secret is to buy a horse that doesn't want to get him (or her) self dirty.
                                      My horse is chestnut with socks on all 4's that go to the knee and hock. He hates getting dirty. Only poops in one spot in his stall and will wait all day until I take him out to ride after work to pee. In fact the BO said he was the first horse she had ever seen that she actually thought she needed to hose his stall since it is so dry. In addition he will NEVER step in poop while riding.
                                      See? It's pretty easy if you can just do the above.
                                      Haha, sounds like my horse. Lucky us, huh?!

                                      Comment


                                      • #20
                                        Originally posted by Equus_girl View Post
                                        Many years ago, after home hair coloring went bad I was sobbing in a local hair salon, praying they could turn my blond hair back to blond from brownish with green highlights :O
                                        They put some soapy stuff on my head, wrapped with food wrap and put me under the blowdryer for 30 minutes. My hair went back to blond and the stuff they used was Matrix Alternate Action shampoo.
                                        http://www.matrixbeautiful.com/produ...g_shampoo.aspx
                                        I still use it once a week to get rid of all build up from numerous products I use and to make the highlights shinier..
                                        Well If people want to use this they had better start calling around and buy and hoard the last bottles for themselves because it has been discontinued.
                                        A pussycat of a horse with a chewed off tail won the triple crown, The Cubs won the world series and Trump won the Presidency.
                                        Don't tell me 'It can't be done.'

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