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Do bridles with a monocrown/integrated crown/recessed crown make a noticeable difference in a horse's comfort, or is it more of a fad? Same with anatomical bridles, is there a notable difference or is it just the latest trend?

I'm asking because I'd like to make sure my tack is as comfortable for the horse as possible, but don't want to spend extra money if it makes little to no difference. Every bridle I own has a traditional crown with the noseband poll strap running underneath it. Also, I'm wondering, even though it would may look really silly, would simply placing the noseband poll strap over the top of the crown rather than under be similar to an integrated/recessed crown? Or would one of those crown pads that attach to bridles similar to what EquiFit makes be a good choice?
 

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Run your finger underneath your bridle with it on the horse to make this judgement. Your horse may help you out by letting you know if anything is bothering him.

Yes, a lot of this stuff is fad, bridle makers want to sell you stuff. I've seen some bridles that really look comfy for the horse, but when you consider that every horse has a different head (and mouth), custom bits and bridles are the only way to go if you want ultimate comfort. Luckily, most horses are good with conventional bridles. I do think it's a good idea to keep 2 complete bridles for your horse and switch off, for no other reason than if one needs repair you have something ready to go.

I trail ride and make my own bridles. In the past I did run the noseband strap on top because it is thinner. Of course that will only work if it does not interfere farther down. Fiddling around with the bridle you have will help you figure out if this fancy stuff is the way you want to go.
 
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