Regular horse care involves a number of important steps and requires a lot of tools. Curry comb, dandy brush, mane comb, equine clippers, you name it. We all also know how hard it can be to keep a horse clean, especially if you have a mud monster. Even if your horse doesn’t like to roll in muddy puddles, you may wish to bathe them from time to time to remove the everyday stains, dust and oily residue from the coat.
If you are looking for a really good shampoo suitable for frequent use, you may find yourself overwhelmed with the huge selection of shampoos available.
What You'll Learn Today
- 1 Best Horse Shampoo Reviews
- 1.1 1. Corona Shampoo Review
- 1.2 2. Warhorse Solutions Natural Equine Shampoo and Conditioner Review
- 1.3 3. Mane ‘N Tail Combo Deal Shampoo and Conditioner Review
- 2 Frequently Asked Questions
- 2.1 1. Does horse shampoo have to be expensive to be good?
- 2.2 2. What are the simplest alternatives for safe, natural horse shampoo?
- 2.3 3. What are some good recipes for homemade horse shampoo?
- 2.4 4. What’s a good alternative to homemade chamomile shampoo for horses with dark or white coats?
- 2.5 5. How do you use baking soda to wash your horse?
- 2.6 6. Is apple cider vinegar (ACV) better than white vinegar?
- 2.7 7. Is it better to follow a DIY horse shampoo recipe or just use a simple, single ingredient?
- 2.8 8. What’s the best way to apply shampoo to a horse?
- 2.9 9. Do horses need to be bathed?
- 2.10 10. Which is better for horses, brushing or bathing?
- 3 Conclusion
Best Horse Shampoo Reviews
To make things a little easier, we have selected three of the best horse shampoos to help you make your mind up:
Shampoos for Horses
|TOP PICK: Corona Shampoo|
Great at cleaning and great value for money.
|Warhorse Natural Equine Shampoo and Conditioner|
A really natural product that works and smells great.
|Mane ‘N Tail Combo Deal Shampoo and Conditioner|
A good, no nonsense shampoo and conditioner combo.
1. Corona Shampoo Review
A great cleansing shampoo, this formulation leaves the horse’s coat soft and smooth – and squeaky clean. Using lanolin to add extra softness, this shampoo is gentle enough to be used daily, as well as being tough on stains and the heavier-soiled horse. All you need to do is dilute it slightly less for the more stubborn stains, and you will be rewarded with a spotlessly clean coat.
- No leftover residue – When you use some shampoos you can be left with a dull look to the coat caused by leftover suds or components in the shampoo. Corona leaves no residue, ensuring the shiniest horse on the yard.
- Lanolin protein enriched – The addition of lanolin not only softens the coat but can actually help strengthen it as well.
- Great value for money – The concentrated formula allows up to 400 washes, meaning you get a lot of bang for your buck!
- Highly rated – This shampoo has been voted as the best shampoo by the Horse Journal, so you will be in good company if you choose this one.
- Can leak in transport – The only reported problem with this shampoo is the packaging. Sometimes it arrives with a leak, which could be solved by the manufacturer stating that the package contains a liquid. If yours has arrived with a leak it shouldn’t be difficult to get your money back or a replacement.
If you are looking for a great cleansing shampoo which can even lift the stains from a white coat, then this is the one for you. It’s not only great at cleaning and great value for money, it is also very nourishing for your horse’s coat. As an added bonus, it won’t irritate the eyes if you happen to get a drop or two splashed in one of them.
2. Warhorse Solutions Natural Equine Shampoo and Conditioner Review
For those looking for a natural, plant-based shampoo, Warhorse is the one for you. Using a base of Castile soap with added Coconut, Castor, Avocado, Almond and Sunflower oils, this is an effective cleanser with absolutely no artificial ingredients or harmful chemicals, making it suitable for sensitive skins.
- Free from sulphates, parabens and dyes – This truly is the most gentle shampoo out there. It will work well on all types of skin, even the most sensitive ones that react to other products.
- Smells delicious! – Using only natural essential oils for fragrance, this shampoo not only works as a cleanser but smells heavenly, meaning your horse will too.
- Cleans and conditions all in one – No need to use a separate conditioner to soften the hair after you wash; the all in one formula does everything you need all in one go. This is great for horses that aren’t keen on being bathed so need to get it all done as quickly as possible.
- Rinses easily – This shampoo doesn’t create a huge lather, making it easier to wash it all off.
- Can leave a residue – There is a chance that your horse’s coat may retain a few suds, leaving a slightly sticky residue which can attract dust.
For a really natural product that not only works and smells great but is also good for the environment and your horse’s coat, look no further. Warhorse is a natural formula which is as gentle as it can be, even on dry and itchy skin.
3. Mane ‘N Tail Combo Deal Shampoo and Conditioner Review
A good all round shampoo and conditioner combo, Mane ‘N Tail have really cornered the market. For the horse who needs more than just the shampoo for cleaning but the conditioner for softening too, Mane ‘N Tail is the one to go for.
- Ideal for regular use – Using this product often can actually improve the appearance of the hair, making it appear thicker and more lustrous.
- Good for skin issues – This shampoo is ideal for those with sensitive skin or allergies. It can be used frequently, unlike some shampoos which actually cause dry, itchy skin.
- A little goes a long way – You don’t need to cover your horse with pints of this stuff to get a good clean. Just a few squirts should give enough lather for a really good clean (unless you’re washing an enormous Shire, in which case you might need a little more!) This makes it great value for money.
- Can be used for people as well as horses – That’s right, if you’re envious of how great your horse’s hair is, you can use it on your own to get the same great results!
- Can make hair limp – Some users have said that this product can sometimes make hair less thick and glossy than it claims to do.
This a good, no nonsense shampoo and conditioner combo, ideal for those horses who benefit from regular washing and who like being pampered so will happily stand for a shampoo and a condition. It has a pleasant smell and does what it says on the tin.
Frequently Asked Questions
1. Does horse shampoo have to be expensive to be good?
Just as with products for human personal care, the best horse shampoo is usually the simplest. Horse shampoos can be more affordable and better quality if you make them yourself using simple, every day ingredients.
2. What are the simplest alternatives for safe, natural horse shampoo?
Very inexpensive, single ingredient horse shampoos can consist of extremely inexpensive kitchen cupboard ingredients such as baking soda and tap water. You can also purchase very simple, single products such as plain baby shampoo or liquid castile soap to use as is as horse shampoo. If you wish, you can concoct more complex and interesting combinations to create your own bespoke horse shampoos.
3. What are some good recipes for homemade horse shampoo?
You can make a very elegant horse shampoo by combining the following ingredients:
- 1 cup full of liquid castile soap
- 1 teaspoonful of avocado oil
- 1 cup full of distilled water
- 1 cup full of aloe vera gel
- 4 teaspoons of glycerin
If you want scent or aromatherapy benefits, you can add a couple of drops of essential oil per ounce of final product. For example, lavender essential oil is very good for helping horses relax. If your horse tends to be skittish during bathing, adding a couple of drops of oil of lavender per ounce of shampoo can be helpful.
Another good recipe for homemade horse shampoo uses very strong chamomile tea as a base. Follow these steps:
- Steep ten chamomile tea bags in 5 cups of freshly boiled water.
- Allow the tea to steep for about an hour and then remove the teabags, squeeze them to get all their goodness.
- Add a cup of castile soap and a tablespoon of glycerin to the strong tea.
This is an especially good shampoo for horses with a yellowish or reddish cast to their coat. Chamomile brings out any golden shades in palominos and sorrels. Be advised it may also have the effect of adding a brassy note to deeper red such as bay or liver chestnut. It may also add a reddish cast to dark brown or black coats and a yellowish cast to white coats.
4. What’s a good alternative to homemade chamomile shampoo for horses with dark or white coats?
For a dark brown or black horse, use black tea instead of chamomile. For a deep red (bay) horse, black tea is alright, but rooibus (red bush) tea really brings out the color of the coat.
For white horses, wash with a combination of baking soda and warm water.
5. How do you use baking soda to wash your horse?
To use baking soda to wash your horse, combine a heaping tablespoon of baking soda per quart of warm water needed. Rinse your horse thoroughly with clean, warm water and then pour the baking soda and water mixture over your horse. Use your hands or a rubber curry comb or body brush to scrub any dirty spots, and allow the baking soda mixture to stand for about five minutes. Rinse thoroughly, and you’re done!
If you wish, you can follow up with a vinegar rinse, which will leave the skin at a neutral pH and help with detangling manes and tails. Mix a couple of ounces of vinegar per quart of warm water to make the rinse. Pour the mixture over your horse after washing with baking soda and water and rinsing with clean water. Allow it to sit for about five minutes and rinse again with clean lukewarm water.
6. Is apple cider vinegar (ACV) better than white vinegar?
ACV is fine for all coat colors, and raw ACV has a therapeutic effect on troubled skin. If your horse has a reddish or yellowish cast to his coat and/or mane and tail, ACV will enhance that coloring. It may tend to cause yellowing on white coats. If you find this to be true, switch to white vinegar.
7. Is it better to follow a DIY horse shampoo recipe or just use a simple, single ingredient?
It’s fun to make your own shampoos, and when you do you can add a little more oil if your horse happens to have a dry coat, add essential oils for aromatherapy purposes and so forth. The downside to making your own shampoo is that these concoctions must be kept in the refrigerator to prevent spoilage.
If you’re just using plain, every day baby shampoo or simple Dr. Bronner’s castile soap, you can just keep it on a shelf in the barn. Likewise with the baking soda and vinegar.
The advantage of using one of Dr. Bronner’s many liquid castile soaps as a horse shampoo is that you can choose from different combinations. Hemp and castile or almond oil and castile combinations are very moisturizing. Lavender and castile provides a bit of aromatherapy. Tea tree oil and castile is a good choice for horses who have skin conditions. Liquid castile soap with rosemary infused enhances the color of a dark brown or black coat.
8. What’s the best way to apply shampoo to a horse?
Be careful not to use too much shampoo. Don’t pour shampoo directly onto your horse’s coat and scrub it in. You don’t want to have your horse covered with suds.
Instead, use a small amount of shampoo mixed with warm water and pour it over the entire horse then scrub dirty spots with your hands or a body brush or rubber curry comb. Generally speaking, about an ounce of castile soap or shampoo per gallon of water should be plenty.
9. Do horses need to be bathed?
Unless are preparing for a show, you probably don’t need to bathe your horse. Even if your horse rolls in mud, you’re better off waiting for caked on mud to dry and fall off on its own.
Follow this up with a good currying and brushing with a mud brush and then a body brush or horse vacuum.
10. Which is better for horses, brushing or bathing?
Regular brushing improves circulation and stimulates the natural oils in the skin to keep the hide and the hair coat in good condition and glossy. Frequent washing dries out the hide and hair coat and strips the natural oils. Overall, regular, daily grooming is preferable to occasional bathing.
Looking for what is the best shampoo for horses? Look no further! For a luxury, lanolin-filled clean that leaves the whites white and the darks glossy, Corona Shampoo is your answer. For those looking for an all natural, highly effective product, Warhorse Solutions Natural Equine Shampoo is what you are after for an all in one clean. For a good, simple, value for money shampoo and conditioner, choose Mane ‘N Tail Combo Deal Shampoo and Conditioner.