If you clip your horse, be it a full body clip or some sort of modified trace clip, doesn’t have to be the long and hairy chore that we all seem to make it out to be. Ok, ok, it can have moments of horrible as the wind changes direction just as you are yawning and you end up choking on a huge hairball. But a few things to do before you clip and you will be good to go. These tips will also help extend the life of your clipper blades, and also give your horse a much shorter time in the barber chair!
Gather these items and get ready to prep and clip:
- Shampoo (Hi Shine is great here - no need to use EquiTone as you will be clipping off most of the hair!)
- No. 1 Light Oil
- Hair clip to keep the mane out of your clipper path
- Super clean and sharp clipper blades
- Clipper oil
- Clipper coolant
- Post clipping conditioner - No. 1 Light Oil or No. 2 Heavy Oil both work well
- Post clipping blanket or sheet
Successful clipping starts with preparation - for both your horse and your clippers. Think hot knife through butter - the knife is your clipper blade - the butter is your horse. The oilier (or more buttery) your horse, the easier it is for the clipper blades to slide across your horse. When you shampoo your horse to get rid of stains, dirt, all the normal horse stuff, follow up with a conditioner to create slippery hair. No. 1 Light Oil spritzed on your horse as he dries creates the ultimate slick finish. You can also layer some Magic Sheen on that, as well.
Your clipper blades are totally important to the success (and speed) of a clip job. Sharp and clean blades reduce lines and increase speed. Have a clipper oil handy for lubricating the blades often, as well as a spray can of coolant. Alternatively, you can use an ice pack and two clipper blades as you work, one cools down on the ice as you switch to another blade.
After clipping, your horse’s hair will be definitely be shorter (awesome) and maybe also a different color (not always awesome). Bays can be mousy colored, chestnuts can be pumpkin-ish in color. The skin and hairs may also seem a bit dry. Use No. 1 Light Oil or No. 2 Heavy Oil as a post clipping conditioner - it's great to toss on a blanket or sheet and let the oil sink in! Spray on, leave in, rinse the next day if you like. You can also restore some color with EquiTone Shampoos. And there you have it - the easiest way to save time and create a shiny clipped horse!