Horse show grooming tips – knock the judge over!


Well, aside from staying on and your horse not acting like a totally foolish goober, you can make your horse shine for the judge. That show ring shine is in the details,  an extra set of hands, adding a few things to your regular grooming routine.  


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Back in the barn, before your classes:


  • Tidy any braids with mousse to pin down fly-aways.



Mane Mousse is great before you braid and can be used after as well to tame any disobedient strands of mane.


  • Use a smidge of grooming oil to make your horse’s eye orbits and nostrils shine. Some disciplines use a lot of grooming oil! For disciplines that don’t typically use oil, a little bit goes a long way; aim for the understated look. Less is more.


  • A tidy tail. Some mousse will flatten and shape the top of your horse’s tail. This helps you avoid the unfashionable, just got struck by lightning look.


  • Wickedly clean tack. Before you hop on, a quick wipe with a lederbalsam creates a nice subtle shine on your tack and gives your bum some extra sticking action.



Lederbalsams are great at spiffing up your tack AND creating grip. Good news for your bum!


  • Trim your horse’s coronary bands. You may have the sharpest-looking legs with perfectly groomed fetlocks, so keep the look going by trimming up the coronary band. Simple safety scissors or your clippers can create a sharp line. Bonus – it’s easier to inspect your horse’s hooves this way; you will likely catch any cracks early!


  • Add some last-second shine. Apply your shine product evenly, and avoid the saddle area!  Sheen sprays can be slippery. 


  • Properly fitted saddle pads do their job without covering up most of your horse. Keep bling and decorations to a minimum, and keep saddle pads clean and minimal.


  • If your horse has been eating before you hop on, consider rinsing his mouth with water to remove all the green slobbies. A large syringe does the trick.


  • When you are getting dressed, honor the tradition of your discipline without taking the judge’s eye away from your horse.



Dress to impress. You and your horse.


Grooming between the warm-up and the show ring:


  • Nicely cleaned and polished hooves. Brush off all dirt on the hooves and add some hoof polish sparingly. You may even want to wipe off most of it, so your horse’s hooves shine just a bit.


  • Do your best to remove sweat. Use a sweat scraper to remove most of it, then follow with damp or dry cloths. Sweat scrapers with the rubber flap are awesome for this job. 


  • Clean any slobber from your horse’s lips, and wipe any sweat from his face. You may want to also check and clean in between his butt cheeks.


  • Smile and have fun!






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EquiTone in Black is great for bays and darker horses.


Whitening EquiTone is good for all colors for shine, and whitening for grays. 


Red EquiTone in brightens chestnuts and blood bays.


EquiTone in GOLD works with palomino coloring. 

HandsOn Gloves on horse_.jpg

HandsOn Grooming Gloves – also, use code PEG for some free shipping!


Genuine Cactus Cloth – Natural – 18 X 16-1/2 Standard This is much better for stain removal and spreading natural oils around.

This cactus mitt may be easier to use than a cloth.  


I love Easy Out for touch-up stain removal and odor elimination!


You can also snap up a bottle of the grooming oil I love 

Fiebing’s Liquid Glycerine Saddle Soap for Horse 16 fl oz


Effax Leather Balsam 500 ml

The gold standard in hoof dressings

Hoof oil with tea tree


The Wet brush – great for damp or wet hair

I love the WET brand for manes and tails.


JT Tough-1 Fold Up Thinning Knife – my favorite mane blade for making a mane even!

Solocomb By Dh Animal Products – for thinning the mane without pulling.

This is a rake that works similarly.

Effax Leather Balsam 500 ml


Fiebing’s 100% Pure Neatsfoot Oil, 32 oz. – Natural Leather Preservative


Wahl Professional Animal Bravura Lithium Clipper – this includes the 5 in 1 blade that goes from a #9 to a #40. Perfect for designs!

Wahl Professional Animal ARCO with 5 in 1 blade


The Chromado, also available in black.


Wahl’s Creativa horse trimmer is also availabe in pink.



The KM10’s are the gold standard for horse body clippers.


The Pro Ion, this is a body clipper that uses 30-15-10 blade system.

The Lister Stars – the best shear-style clippers for horses!



Blades for body clippers, the detachable style.


The 10 Wide blade for body clippers, the detachable style.

A 5 in 1 replacement blade.


Lister Star blades, fine cut.


Liste Star Blades, Medium


30-15-10’s adjustable blade.




Clipper Blade Coolant- You still need to use oil

Clipper Oil – please use this every five minutes as you are clipping. 


Blade Sanitizer





Thank you!