Horse Braiding Supplies: Everything You Need

Last Updated on April 5, 2022

Many people will braid a horse’s mane or tail at some point, whether for showing or simply upkeep. You will want to have horse braiding supplies to ensure you can successfully braid the mane or tail. Depending on the braid you are doing, you will need different supplies.

Having the right tools can make braiding much easier. Though it may take some time, you can perfect braiding your horse’s mane and tail with practice. Braiding can be a great way to keep your horse’s mane and tail tangle-free.

Horse Braiding Supplies

When braiding a horse’s tail, whether for show or just upkeep to keep it clean and tangle-free, you will want to make sure you have all of the right equipment. You can get the braiding equipment you need at your local tack store or online as well.

Horse Braiding Supplies

What You Need For Basic Braids

There are many different types of horse braids you can use. For basic braids such as straight, running, and continental, you will just need basic braiding supplies. These supplies work for braiding the mane and tail

Comb And/Or Brush

Before you brush a horse’s mane and tail, you will want to brush it out to make sure it is smooth and clean. You want to rid the mane and tail of any tangles, shavings, and dirt. You can use either a comb or brush on your horse’s mane and tail

Detangler – Horse Braiding Supplies

If your horse’s mane and the tail are really knotty and you are having trouble getting the tangles out, it is a good idea to use a detangler. Detangler works great to get rid of tricky tangles and make the hair smooth and soft, which is ideal for braiding.

Braiding Bands

Braiding bands are small rubber bands that are used to hold together mane braids. They typically come in brown, black, or white to match a horse’s hair color, but you can also get them in colorful options as well.

Check Out These Facts About A 6-Month-Old Foal

What You Need For A Button And Hunter Mane And Tail Braids

Hunter/jumper and hunter pleasure horses will have braided manes and tails for the show ring. In addition, dressage horses will also have braided manes for competing.

Hunter braids consist of 20-40 small, uniform braids that show off a horse’s neck. There are two main types of hunter mane braids that hunter/jumpers and hunter pleasure horses wear: flat braids and knob braids. Flat braids lie flat on the horse’s neck and knob braids are pushed up onto the crest of the neck.

In addition to having a braided mane, hunter/jumpers and hunter pleasure horses will also often have a braided tail. The tail is braided neatly in a French braid for the length of the tail bone.

Dressage horses traditionally wear button braids, which are also called rosette braids or dressage braids. These braids are large, rounded mane braids, with usually 11-17 braids. They can be positioned on the side of the neck or on the top of the neck.

Read more about What Makes A Horse Sweat Foam?

Pulling Comb

Many dressages and jumping horses have their manes trimmed to be only a few inches long for braiding purposes. Pulling combs are used to thin out a horse’s mane and keep it at a short length. Many people will pull their horse’s manes before braiding to make sure the mane is at a good length and thickness.

Most pulling combs are metal and are only three to four inches long. Pulling a mane should be done with care and practice.

Comb And/Or Brush – Horse Braiding Supplies

Before you braid a mane or tail, you will want to make sure it is clean and free of any tangles. Using a comb or brush is a great way to get the mane smooth, clean, and tangle-free.


If your horse’s mane or tail is particularly knotty, you will want to use a detangler. This is a great way to get rid of tangles and give the hair a smooth, clean finish.

Mane ‘n Tail Detangler The Tangles and Knots Solution 12 Ounce

Braiding Bands

Depending on how you decide to braid your horse’s mane and tail, you may need a braiding band. Though many braiders do not use them for hunter or button braids, other people prefer to use them as they find them easier to work with.

Braiding Yarn – Horse Braiding Supplies

The traditional method of making button and hunter braids uses braiding yarn. The braiding yarn generally matches the color of the horse’s mane and tail. The yarn is braided at the bottom part of the braid and then used to pull the braid through itself, with the excess cut off at the end.


Scissors are needed to trim off the excess braiding yarn at the end of the braid. They are also handy to have to trim any stray or long hairs if need be.

Latch Hook

A latch hook or braiding hook is used to pull the braid through itself to create its shape. They pull the bottom of the braid through the top of the braid.

Hair Clip – Horse Braiding Supplies

Large hair clips are handy to have when braiding a mane. They allow you to section off the mane so you can focus on one braid at a time.

Horse Braiding Supplies - Hair Clip

Spray Bottle

Oftentimes, it is handy to have a spray bottle with water or water mixed with styling gel on hand. Spritzing the hair so it is slightly damp can make it easier to work with.

Braiding A Horse’s Mane And Tail

Before you get braiding, you want to make sure you have all the right equipment. This will help the process go much smoother and create better-looking braids.

Do you have any questions regarding horse braiding supplies? If so, please ask your question on mane and tail braiding in the comments.


How Do You Attach a Horse’s Mane?

In some cases, false braids may be used if a horse's mane is too thin or short. To attach false braids, use a braiding band to tie up a section of your horse's mane and then use a second braiding band to attach the fake braid to the mane. Wrap then tuck the mane underneath the fake braid and use a needle and thread to sew it into the mane, being careful to avoid the neck.

Do Horses Like Their Mane Braided?

Most horses are indifferent about getting their mane braided. However, having their mane braided can help keep them cool on hot summer days, which they will like.

How Long Can I Leave My Horses Mane Braided?

You can keep your horse's mane braided for as long as the braids stay in and clean, which can be anywhere from a few days to a couple of months. Once the braids begin to fall out or get wet or dirty, you should re-braid.

Can You Braid Horses Hair Wet?

You should not braid a horse's hair wet, as it can cause damage to the hair and even cause it to fall out. It is ok to lightly spritz a horse's mane with water if you are doing a hunter or button braid.