Horse sweat and natural oils!


Horse sweat and natural oils (sebum) are not the same, each has its own function.


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The natural oils (sebum) that coat your horse’s hair will repel water – the water will bead up.


Differences horse sweat and natural oils


  • Natural oils are the key to a shiny horse!


  • Sweat is created to cool your horse.


  • In the layers of your horse’s skin, he has many glands and follicles that “do things”. Each follicle that your horse has contains one single hair. Each follicle also contains a sebaceous gland, which is responsible for secreting a substance called sebum onto the hair. This sebum is what we call natural oils – the shine maker!


  • Sweat is produced by the sweat gland, which is not attached to the hair follicle. Sweat glands secrete water, salts, and latherin to help your horse cool. Latherin is also responsible for making things foam – which is why a sweaty horse will be foamy after some friction from tack or his own butt cheeks.




Time for some post-ride grooming


Another important distinction between the sebaceous glands that produce shine and the sweat glands is how they react to water.


  • It’s not easy to rinse away the natural oils. For a naturally shiny horse, water will bead on his coat – the oils are repelling the water from your horse. Typically, you need to use a harsh detergent to strip the oils from your horse’s coat.


  • This is, of course, one of the primary reasons to never use laundry products on your horse. And also, your horse is not your sweatpants or your gym towels.


  • It is easy, however, to rinse away sweat. In fact, doing so can help your horse stay dark and avoid becoming sun bleached.


  • You may also notice that your horse looks salty, dull, or crunchy if you allow the sweat to dry on his coat.



This horse is a bit sweaty – and the latherin in the sweat combined with the friction of the tack creates foamy sweat.



  • I will, on occasion and weather permitting, allow small amounts of sweat to dry on my horse. Then I will attack with the sweaty spots with a cactus cloth, and all becomes shiny again.


  • This is because you are brushing off the dried sweat, and also stimulating your horse’s skin to release natural oils. For significant amounts of sweat, I prefer to do a rinse in the wash rack.


All of this begs the question of how to increase the natural oils on your horse’s coat. How to bring up the sebum!


  • You can start with a bunch of grooming, then groom some more. Like really. Groom your arms off. Between grooming gloves and a cactus cloth, you should be good to go.



  • Get a stallion. The testosterone that a stallion has stimulates so much sebum, hence that stallion shine.




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Big Hoss - Outlaw Nutrition

Omega 3's plus gut health support in a delicious cold milled flax formula. It's delicious and it will turn your horse's coat into a mirror.

Shapley's Easy-Out No Rinse Shampoo 32 fl.oz
$16.23 $14.64

Spot removing, deodorizing, dust busting, shine adding spray.

05/13/2024 04:53 pm GMT
Shapley's Hi Shine Shampoo, 1-Gallon
$49.99 $41.87

Other sizes, too! Adds shine with the most gentle formula.

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SHAPLEY'S Medi-Care Med Shampoo W/Tea Tree & Lemon Grass, 32 oz

The best shampoo for shine and soothing.

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Shapley's No.1 Light Oil
$19.99 ($0.62 / Fl Oz)

For shine, conditioning, detangling, and stain protection.

03/11/2024 08:33 pm GMT
Rubber Latex Waterproof Dishwashing Gloves, 2 Pair Medium Long Cuff
$12.99 $9.99 ($5.00 / Count)

It's fashion and function

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Shapley’s 32 oz. Color Enhancing Shampoo - Whitening Formula

For all colors - to add shine and help lift stains.

05/08/2024 01:18 am GMT
Shapley's Equitone 32 oz. Color Enhancing Shampoo, GOLD

Brighten duns, palominos, and golden colors.

05/09/2024 01:58 am GMT
SHAPLEY'S 32 oz. Color Enhancing Shampoo, RED

For chestnuts and some bays

05/08/2024 01:33 am GMT
Shapley's 32 oz. Color Enhancing Shampoo, BLACK
$23.49 $17.65

For dark bays, black points, and black horses

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4 Pairs Exfoliating Gloves
$8.95 ($2.24 / Count)
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HANDSON Pet Grooming Gloves - Grooming, Bathing, Shedding
$24.99 $16.99

These are HandsOn Gloves with special pricing! Only in the color gray.

03/29/2024 08:24 pm GMT
Shires Cactus Cloth
$16.79 ($16.79 / Count)
03/11/2024 08:18 am GMT
HandsOn Finishing Gloves - Double Sided
$19.99 ($19.99 / Count)

The jute side buffs to add shine, the other side is fuzzy for lifting dust and applying fly sprays and grooming products.

03/29/2024 08:16 pm GMT
Handson Ergonomic Hoof Pick
$19.99 ($19.99 / Count)

This is the strongest hoof pick available!

03/29/2024 08:17 pm GMT
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Farnam Slick 'N Easy Horse Grooming Block
$5.49 $4.24

Good for grooming, shedding, and bot egg removal

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Haas Lipizzaner Brush
$42.00 ($42.00 / Count)

This brush is luxury and will help your horse shine!

05/07/2024 04:34 pm GMT
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Electric Cleaner Co Rapid Groom Horse Vacuum
$605.00 ($605.00 / Count)

It's always satisfying to vacuum your horse!

04/10/2024 01:46 pm GMT
HANDSON Pet Grooming Gloves - Grooming, Bathing, Shedding
$24.99 $16.99

These are HandsOn Gloves with special pricing! Only in the color gray.

03/29/2024 08:24 pm GMT


Thank you!