EcoLicious Grooming Tips: Red Carpet Ready Makeover
Have you ever wondered what it takes to take your horse from shaggy pasture ornament to red carpet ready? Here are our tips for a deceptively easy, eco-friendly makeover that will turn heads in or out of the ring!
Step 1: Prep-work
You may be surprised to find that the first step in your horse’s makeover doesn’t include a hose! The reason for this? If there is any dirt, burrs or shavings in the mane or tail before you wet it, it will most likely be there after you wet it. If you’ve ever tried to shampoo and dry a tangled, clumped or matted mane, you know it is a stressful mess. Detangling now means less work later!
- Apply De-Stress Intensive Reconstructing & Detangling Treatment from root to tip on the mane, tail and forelock. Leave it in for a few minutes – or overnight if you have time. Note: a little goes a long way!
- Next, carefully finger comb the mane and tail, starting with small sections at the base and working your way through. While combs and rakes are important tools, they work best and do the least amount of damage (breakage) if you only use them after removing most of the tangles. It can take more than a year to replace a full-length tail hair so don’t be hasty! Think of it as a growth opportunity to spend some “hands on” quality time with your horse, and back away from the comb. Using your fingers to gently work out knots, along with De-Stress Intensive Treatment will take your horse’s mane and tail from “drabulous to fabulous.”
Step 2: Time for a trim
Whether you’re a competitive or recreational rider, your horse will look and feel better if you’ve taken the time to keep everything neat. Think of trimming your horse as a chance to tidy up.
- Remove the tufts of hair that protrude from the ears, the long hairs on the heels and under the jaw line. Many owners also prefer to trim a modest bridle path behind the ears for neatness and helping the bridle to lay flat.
- Whether you bang tails or pull manes depends on your discipline, but remember this rule of thumb: when in doubt keep all excess clipping and trimming to a minimum! Taking “just a little bit more” or “a little off the top” can lead to a botched cut that is sloppy, difficult to work with, and takes a long time to grow back.
Step 3: Bath time
While your horse may fear the sabre-toothed garden hose, getting him or her used to it is well worth it. Your horse will look and smell fabulous after this next step.
- Your results will be even more outstanding if you thoroughly soak the coat first. Be kind and make the experience more pleasant to start by choosing a water temperature that is comfortable for your horse – no one likes an icy cold bath or scalding hot shower!
- Add a small quantity of Squeaky Green & Clean Deep Cleansing & Conditioning Shampoo . It’s tough on grime and dirt yet gentle on skin (all while still adding that much sought after moisture and gloss.) An added bonus is that like all EcoLicious products, a little goes a long way and it’s biodegradable so you can bathe your horse on the grass with a clear conscience. It also doesn’t leave your horse itching to roll the instant you let go.
- Use a loofah to build up the cleansing foam, while removing any dead skin or dander. Now is a great time to scratch those itchy spots for your horse and remove the odds of temptation later. Move on to the mane and tail, paying special attention to the base.
- If your horse has light coloured socks, elbow grease, a loofah and a dab of Squeaky will give you those vibrant whites without talcum powder or toxic home remedies (Note: watch for our new EcoLicious whitener soon).
- Rinse thoroughly with clear water.If your horse has white socks, mane or tail and you’ve been settling for less that bright, now’s the time for you to try Blinded by the White Total Body Whitener. It’s lemon-based and will whiten, brighten and condition thanks to its dual lemon and glycerine ingredients. For best results, use it after you’ve given a good scrub with Squeaky Green & Clean Shampoo and rinsed well with clear water. Once your horse is dry, apply Blinded by the White, vigorously rub into stains and leave in for at least 30 minutes. Aluminum foil can be used to wrap socks and tails (for extra stained tails, leave in overnight). Once dry, scrub again and rinse out.
- Apply Silky Rinse Out Moisturizing Conditioner to the entire body, mane and tail. It makes your horse feel silky without silicones, so you can condition the entire body without worrying that it may cause your saddle to slip. Let it sit for a few minutes while you rinse out the underside of the hooves and take a warm, damp towel to gently cleanse areas where the loofah wasn’t welcome.
- After the final rinse, use a squeegee or sweat scraper to get the excess water off the coat. This will save you precious drying time and also make sure there is no excess product left on your horse (which will show up in the form of little white bubbles as you scrape).
Step 4: Treat the Mane and Tail…again!
- While the mane is still slightly damp, mist it with conditioner before finger combing again. Moisture Maniac Mane & Tail Detangling Infusion softens the hair and protects it from breakage. Spray liberally into the base of the mane and tail to ensure you are moisturizing any areas that could be dry or brittle, especially if you intend to braid later. Moisture Maniac contains natural UV filters – no more fading from the sun.
Step 5: Enhance the Coat
- While the main and tail are drying, apply Glossy – Gloss Enhancing Coat Tonic to bring out healthy, lustrous sheen. It not only softens the coat but also creates natural luminosity (which cannot be duplicated by other products that contain silicones that coat the hair instead of penetrating and conditioning it).And because there is no silicone in any EcoLicious products, your tack will not slip!
- To get the best shine, rub the horse down using the palms of your hands, following the direction of hair growth. Follow with a sheepskin grooming mitt to gently buff the coat to high, glossy sheen. Glossy – Gloss Enhancing Coat Tonic is infused with Mica (a shimmering, reflective mineral) and, when combined with the naturally buffing action of the sheepskin, really finishes the look. You will be amazed at how beautiful your horse’s coat looks and feels.
Step 6: Finishing Touches
- When the mane is dry, wrap things up by braiding using In Control Braiding & Mane Setting Cream. Not only are hairsprays and gels toxic, sticky and smelly but they also don’t provide the subtle hold In Control gives you (OR add lustre OR restore elasticity to the hair!)
- Apply one small dollop of De-Stress Intensive Reconstructing & Detangling Treatment and work it through the tail, using your fingers for a final comb. Once there are absolutely no tangles, gently brush the tail with a flexible, natural bristle brush
- Hoof Therapy Restorative & Protective Serum can be used at any time to moisturize and polish the hooves, and it is the perfect finishing touch to your horse’s red carpet makeover. No toxic paints, tars or sparkles required! It will naturally nourish and moisturize them while resisting dust and dirt accumulation.For up to the minute dazzling whites, use a touch of Blinded by the White Total Body Whitening Treatment on white socks, manes and tails (or patches). No need to rinse out.
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Detox & Go Green with your Equine Grooming Routine!