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Question re: olive oil

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  • Question re: olive oil

    I've heard (from COTH among other sources) that olive oil is a good product to use on leather, especially for darkening. I've always been a fan of hydrophane, but the local tackshops haven't carried it for quite a few years now, and ordering in is a pain. I'd love to use olive oil, but I'm worried about it going rancid, especially once summer comes in the heat. Any experiences?

  • #2
    I used it once when I ran out of oil and needed to get a new bridle somewhat workable for a lesson. It worked just fine for me, but I'm not sure how much it darkens since the bridle was already a very dark color.


    • #3
      I know Lucassb uses olive oil and all of her tack is dark and gorgeous. Since her horse is black its especially important to her that her stuff be dark enough, so there is no question that it works.


      • #4
        I use olive oil but not really for darkening unless it's brand new tack - it will darken it a bit but not like a darkening agent. it does not smell once it's settled in. It is a great option and i prefer it over neatsfoot oil


        • Original Poster

          thanks, folks!


          • #6
            I have used olive oil on my new tack forever, and although there are certainly some people who laugh ("it's tack, not a salad!") ... I find it works better than some of the horse-specific stuff and is less expensive to boot.

            I have always been super anal about my tack and as BAC will attest, I am very particular about its appearance. The olive oil darkens nicely and absorbs well. I have been using it for several decades now and have never had a single issue or problem with it, and that includes some very high end bridles (Hermes, Jimmys, Hadfields, etc.)
            We move pretty fast for some rabid garden snails.


            • #7
              Kashmere - I've used olive oil forever too. To answer your question about it going rancid... Mine is kept out in the barn in 100+ degree Sacramento California summers. It's never gone bad... don't know if humidity would make a difference, but I doubt it.

              David Stackhouse recommends it as does the saddle maker in my area.


              • Original Poster

                Just took the plunge with a new halter, seems to be working like a charm! Next-- on to the icky orange saddle. Thanks for the reassurance


                • #9
                  Originally posted by kashmere View Post
                  Just took the plunge with a new halter, seems to be working like a charm! Next-- on to the icky orange saddle. Thanks for the reassurance
                  It's perfect for the icky orange saddle. I bought a Pessoa GenX in the awful orange color for very cheap. I used olive oil to turn it a very dark rich brown, rode in it for a few months and then sold it for $100 buck more than I bought it for new. Olive oil rocks.


                  • #10
                    I've used all sorts of oils when no neatsfoot was available (ie, I'd run out and hadn't taken the time to replenish it).

                    Olive oil is fine to use, though it's probably the most expensive choice you can make. For that reason, I prefer to keep mine in the kitchen.
                    Inner Bay Equestrian


                    • #11
                      Well wether it's more expensive than tack oils entirely depends upon what brand of olive oil you are purchasing. As you see Lucassb says she finds olive oil cheaper than tack oils.

                      I like extra virgin olive oil but I will use neatsfoot or hydrophane too.


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by SkipChange View Post
                        Well wether it's more expensive than tack oils entirely depends upon what brand of olive oil you are purchasing. As you see Lucassb says she finds olive oil cheaper than tack oils.

                        I like extra virgin olive oil but I will use neatsfoot or hydrophane too.
                        Probalby a stupid question (I almost always use hydrophane) but will vegetable or canola oil work, too?
                        A proud friend of bar.ka.


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Hunter Mom View Post
                          Probalby a stupid question (I almost always use hydrophane) but will vegetable or canola oil work, too?
                          Vegtable oil works very well.


                          • #14
                            Yep I've used vegetable oil too


                            • #15
                              Oooo! I'm going to give it a try too. I use the Passier conditioner on saddles, and like it a good bit. If I like the olive oil better, I'll put it on an older saddle I have that I really love


                              • #16
                                I use olive oil now too. Warm it up a bit, lather it on, let it soak in, and wipe of the access.


                                • #17
                                  I've used olive oil and peanut oil - have to say, I like peanut oil better.

                                  And I read somewhere that is what Beval recommends!

                                  I warm whatever oil I am using up first in the microwave - not boiling, just warm. Find it absorbs better that way.


                                  • #18
                                    Hmmm... does the peanut oil darken the leather as well also?


                                    • #19
                                      Mineral oil. Works the very best, but don't buy it from the grocery store. Your vet uses it all the time to oil horses, and it is WAY cheaper. $11 or $12 a gallon when you get it from the vet.


                                      • #20
                                        I used Olive Oil for a long time cuz the friend I bought my Beval from had spent that saddle's life with Olive Oil on it. I love how it works, but it was getting too pricey for me. I use Hydrophane now.....

                                        I do recall the OO working BETTER for soaking in when you're doing a really GOOD coat.

                                        I have a huge jug of OO for my kitchen right now that I seem to recall was the same cost as the hydrophane, so I may try it again (got it at Walmart)
                                        Horse Drawings!