Darkening Bridles

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Darkening Bridles

This is a discussion on Darkening Bridles within the Horse Tack and Equipment forums, part of the Horse Tack category
  • Olive oil bridle
  • Tanners leather darkening oil review

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    12-20-2008, 05:24 PM
Darkening Bridles

So I bought a new bridle for my new horse, but it is too light. What is the best way to darken a bridle? My friend soaked hers in olive oil over night and it worked very well, but I was looking online and people were saying that olive oil goes rancid and ruins the bridle. Is this true, and what are your experiences? THANKS
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    12-20-2008, 07:06 PM
Super Moderator
Bridle Help

Neatsfoot Oil will Darken Leather and Condition it. It is normally easy to find at feed stores etc.
    12-22-2008, 07:34 PM
Neatsfoot Oil will do the trick, but I've heard that (over time) it can deteriorate the stitching. Hydrophane always gets rave reviews for leather oil, and I assume it would darken as well.

Remember to take the bridle completely apart before oiling so that you get a consistent coat all over (no light spots under your keepers!!)
    12-25-2008, 08:37 AM
Hydrophane makes a darkening oil besides the regular oil. It will darken tack a little at a time and is permanent. Olive oil is used by a lot of people but it can go rancid and it will attract rodents besides being a little expensive. The plus side of olive oil it is that you can also use it on your salad.
    12-26-2008, 03:20 PM
I use black/brown shoe dye/polish.
You can also find some leather dye. We have some in our tack store.
Do remember that once you oil it, it'll be much harder to dye later.
If you already oiled it, rub some rubbing alcohol over it, dry, then use the shoe polish or whatever.
    12-26-2008, 07:14 PM
Green Broke
I second Hydrophane Darkening Oil. It's really good stuff and you don't have to worry as much about over-oiling. I have a can each of Hydrophane Darkening Oil and Leather Conditioner. It's great!

Shoe polish will wear off, and possibly transfer on to your horse when it sweats.
    12-29-2008, 11:18 AM
I soaked my bridle overnight in Hydrophane Leather Dressing. Then in the morning I set it outside in the sun all day. Not only did it darken it up but it also softened it so it is nice and supple.
    12-29-2008, 11:35 AM
Try heating the oil before applying it. That will quicken the darkening time.
    12-29-2008, 01:43 PM
I've never heard of Hydrophane oil, I've always used Tanners or Neatsfoot, but Tanners is better so if you can't fine Hydrophane, soak it in Tanners darkening oil overnight.

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