Just wondering if you have any secrets to making your horse look extra shiny? My horse is a little shiny on his own but I'd like the other horse owners at the barn to say "woah look at that shiny pony!" haha just kidding but that would be great :P
Anyways, is there anything you do to make your horse extra shiny? Thanks! :)
Groom Groom Groom Groom, and skip extra un-needed baths. The complete constant grooming will stimulate the hair and oil glands so that the natural oils come out leaving healthy skin and coat, which over time will shine even when dirty. Constant bathing strips the oils, dries the skin and coat and though at the time makes the horse pretty, over time will wreck the coat. Don't get me wrong, rinsing the salt and sweat out is a good thing, but constant shampooing is bad for the coat.
When you do shampoo, unless you are showing, opt for more gentle body washes and the such (my favorite is Oil of Olay moisturizing body wash), they are less stripping of the oils. Save the heavy duty stuff for show days.
I personally love to have a shiny horse when I got trail riding- mostly because I go out with friends and it's nice to really make my little bay "stand out" against their paints and beautiful Qh's The above picture was after the bath, the last one was a picture taken after Indie had dried (on a different day).
I feed a cup of corn/vegetable oil every day... it works for Indie, but her fur just gets an extra kick of shine during the summer when the coat is short. I bathe probably once a week; a lot of people are against that but it's what has worked for us in the past. Another factor is that she is on green grass 6 hours a day, which serves as her breakfast and lunch, and then just good ol grass hay during the evening.
Now as for her grooming; I like to use the shampoo that comes from the dollar store, the really big bottle I dump it out until it's only 1/3 full, and fill it back up with water and mix it up. You then get a "foam" sort of shampoo. Spray that all over and scrub the horse, rinse and repeat. You use less shampoo, but get better results. I ALWAYS condition, same stuff from the dollar store (sometimes from my moms bathroom if I can sneak it nothing like Herbal Essence for the mane. ). I make sure the mane and tail is soaked really well in the conditioner, and usually wait 15 minutes before I rinse it back out (sometimes wetting the hair so that the conditioner doesn't dry).
After all this, this is what she looks like on any given day;
But if you want the pazazz that was in the first two pictures, I got that by putting a tiny dime size of baby oil on a soft face brush, and massaged it into the hair. Not a whole lot, you don't want it to be greasy, but just enough there was an extra kick to the shine. Really gotta experiment with the amount of baby oil you use, one time I used too much and her mane was a greasy mess So start small and work your way into it, you don't want to be able to feel the baby oil in the hair, just enough to give a glisten.
Like Cinny said, a well balanced diet and avoiding baths are a huge part of it. Of course, a lot of grooming helps too, but it's less of a necessity than the first 2 things.
These horses are fed well, never bathed with shampoo, and seldom groomed (some of them before being ridden only, others are hardly ever even brushed past shedding season because they are turned out for retirement).
Forgive John's gaunt appearance, he had just been gelded....