Dying manes and tails, how long before a show?

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GwynethYogi

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Hi everyone, : )

I am thinking of dying my gelding's sun bleached mane and tail for an upcoming show. The show is on August 9th, when should I dye his mane and tail? Should I do it a day or so before the show, or a week or two before the show? I am going to clip him in the next couple of days so should I dye his mane and tail before I clip him?

Thanks in advance!
 

fourluckyhorseshoes

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Is his tail black? I know some people use Shapley's show touch up spray for the color instead of dying. It may be worth a try.
 

GwynethYogi

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Yes, his tail is black. I have heard that Shapley's show touch up spray leaves the hair dry and brittle. So I don't really want to use that, thanks for the suggestion though.
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chandab

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I don't show, but I'd dye before clipping, so if you do have any drips, you'll remove them when clipping. The dye should last til your show just fine, and if you need to you can probably just touch up with the comb in hair color for men or something like that. And, I've read on the forum not to use black, but to go with the darkest brown you can find. [if you do a search on the forum (search box upper right corner), you'll likely find several threads about dying manes and tails.]
 

Marsha Cassada

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Dyeing lasts a long time. I would go ahead and do it. It will look more natural by the time of the show. Definitely clip after dyeing! Good luck!
 

GwynethYogi

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Alright, I'll dye and then clip.

Does the dye wash away or drip onto the horse's coat if it gets rained on? Now should I give him a bath, dye and then clip. Or should I dye, bathe then clip?

Thanks!
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Marsha Cassada

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If you use permanment hair color, it will not come off onto the regular coat if it gets wet. If you have never dyed before, beware. Read up on other forum members' experiences with it to maximize booboos.

Follow the directions on the dye about bathing. The one I used said to let oil build up on the hair for at least a day before dying, so shampooing right before dying might depend on what color brand you use.
 

GwynethYogi

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So a temporary hair dye would drip off onto his coat if it got wet? I'll have to do some reading on permanent hair dye.
 

LittleRibbie

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I dye manes and tails beginning of the Summer right when it starts getting warm enough for a good bath. I do not bath prior. I try to use a mousse type b/c its less messy and I don't get the drips. I try to find one that is specifically made for African/Black type hair. From experience it seems to last longer ( almost the whole Summer ) If I haven't used the product before I do a test area and judge my timimg on how that looks....I usually end up leaving it on about 20 min longer than what it suggests. If you have white areas around the area you need to dye I always put a few globies of any type of petro jelly or lube on that area first and then any dye that accidently gets that spot will not dye. I also put some around the eyes and it keeps any thing out too.. If your horse is o.k w/plastic bags you can cut a slit the length of the neck along the side and pull the mane thru then tape (vet tape ) bag around the poll and shoulder area to keep it from slipping while you work. Depending on the horse and color I do put the tail in a loose bag while the coloring is "setting" because that horse has white socks and tends to flip his tail in disgust....who would blame him LOL.When rinse time comes just be sure to get right down near the skin and rinse really well...even better than well!!! Be sure to check for any dye that gets on hoofs...if your horse has white hoofs its a real pain to even sand it off ( I usually forget to put the jelly on them )The dye usually comes with conditioner...I always use the conditioner that's included and usually love love love it..but its never enough so I will use any el cheap o conditioner I have...and I use a lot. Again rinse rinse rinse...I leave it on about 30 min. Usually by then the hay bag is empty and Im exhausted!! He/She is ready to be dried and stalled ( clean fluffy shavings )The next day is when I go back and do clipping, good bathing and any fussy work...But make sure your brushes are clean!!! I don't show and am not an expert by any means so no one can criticize my clipping or dye work which is fine with me...but at least they look pretty to me when Im watching them from my kitchen window!!! Oh and because Im not showing Im not a big fan of all the "make your horse shiny" products/sprays out there and Im too cheap to buy most b/c they are expensive so unless Im taking the kids on an outing I don't use them. Reading your post again...IMO I would dye now and then clip and perhaps do another quicky clip a few days before the show. I think you will find lots of different answers on when to actually clip b/c every horse is different and some look better clipped that day...others like their horses clipped earlier. I would think the more you show and do all the prep work over time you will know when you think your horse looks the best and go from there. Just go and have fun and don't forget your camera. Good luck!!!

Rereading my post....geeze Heidi ....you sure like to ramble on!! Poor Gwyneth didn't need a dang novel...sorry!
 
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GwynethYogi

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Thanks for all of the very useful information LittleRibbie! I never would have thought to use tape to stop the plastic bags from sliding.

Thanks again.
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mizbeth

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The tape will slip too. It is not easy dying their manes and tails, but one thing you can do is color only the top of the mane rather than all of it. The faded part is only on the top anyway and same with the tail. Not sure what color your horse is but the only time I use a dark brown is if I coloring the mane/tail on a silver buckskin. All others are black, but the natural black not the jet black or blue black. You can do it now. One thing I do is wet the horse down, thoroughly, so "when the color", not "if the color" gets on them it won't stick. You can use baby oil, it is bit easier to wash out too than vaseline, but do cover any area where you think the horse might move and make the color drip. And oh yes, they move too and rarely stand still for you. If you use oil all over the tape will not stick in fact probably won't with water either. I have taken a bag and put the tail in it wrapped it tight at the top with tape and taken peice of the mane and wrapped it in foil while the color is on. You do it a bit at a time, but do have to hurry as the color is working all the while you are applying it in other areas you have applied it. You can remove the foil by slipping it off. Wet the horse again before pulling the foil off, then rinse quickly. The spray is a powder, or used to be and is very very messy - gets black dust all over the horse - in the ring. The foamy mouse type sound like it would work pretty well, I will try that next time I dye a mane/tail. I have heard of some trainers using the comb in stuff for men, but probably it is just for the forelock? Not sure on that one. GOOD LUCK!!!
 

Performancemini

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Great advice so far! I haven't tried wetting the body first. Going to do it today-we have a show this weekend! We use Just for Men-the regular, not the comb in. We only use it once a year. My Mom, sister and niece are all hairdressers and are a great source of information on do's and don'ts with their hair care.
 

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