Wednesday, November 24, 2010

A review: Absorbine finishing spray

So last week I did a review on Detanglers I noted at the bottom how the review was of my own doing and the company who made said products likely did not know of me or the bitless horse blog. Well it seemed like minutes before I got an e-mail signed Sean from Absorbine. He said he had seen my post about the detanglers, was very glad I loved the Santa-Fe line and had an improved show sheen product for me to try. How awesome is that?
Of course I accepted the trial. The product he was sending isn't even distributed in Canada yet and I was more than willing to give it a shot.

So a day or so later this showed up at the door. From the images I seen it was the same type of non-aerosol bottle my sunscreen came in. I was correct, only it was much larger than I thought again comparing it to my little bottle of sunscreen. The cool thing about this was it was labeled for horses, cattle, dogs, camels, lamas (etc etc?) right on the bottle.

This is Absorbines Show sheen finishing mist.
Strait from the Absorbine website:

Celebrated worldwide as the best-selling hair polish in over 25 countries, ShowSheen is now available as a Finishing Mist. Perfect for last-minute touch-ups, ShowSheen Finishing Mist has a continuous, quiet sprayer that won't spook your horse and even sprays upside down.

• Continuous sprayer for uniform and complete coverage
• Original ShowSheen® is now enriched with Pro Vitamins and Silk Proteins to shine and strengthen better than ever
• Pro Vitamins nourish coat for a world class shine
• Silk Proteins strengthen mane and tail hair for a more beautiful appearance
• Repels dust and dirt to save grooming time
• ShowSheen® is the best selling hair polish in over 25 countries around the world
• Fresh scents of Jasmine and Sandalwood pamper your horse

I know some of you are gonna think I am crazy but the smell of original show sheen didn't make me want to sniff manes all day. This stuff however smells amazing.

Unfortunately I really did not get to try it right away. I had three (and a bit) days of carriage rides ahead of me. I sprayed it into Indigo's mane and on her hindquarters and left it. Between that time I didn't brush her mane or tail because I was driving a horse or sleeping it felt like. It rained really good a night ago and the wind was insane. Long mane + Wind = dreadlocks. Fortunately there were none to be seen. Her mane was still manageable, as in I could finger comb it relatively easy. This was three days later.

So yesterday I wanted to see what it was really like.

Insert dirt horse.
Indigo has a very naturally soft, fine coat. She almost always feels slick and soft. Softer than any horse I have met and anyone who pets her agrees with me. In the winter it statics easily and collects mud (as any spotty white horse will). Fortunately for me her hair coat seems to be infused with teflon because the moment the dirt dries it brushes right off and she looks "white" again, or as close to it. However she does get dust in her coat and every time I swipe a brush over a confirmed dust spot you can see streaks of dirt and no matter how much you brush they just never go away. Unless you take a shop vac to the horse (If you are on my facebook you would have heard about this) effective, but not many horses would likely stand well. This is where sprays like this come in handy. The dirt does not stick in the hair and on the skin the same if they are sprayed with some sort of coat spray.

I sprayed her hocks a day before.

Look! They are actually clean no pee stains! It's a miracle they are still shiny and this is before I brushed them. Why didn't I think of this before?

Her tail was easily finger combed after a minute or two of letting this dry without any snags or tangles.

Her mane was soft and manageable too. It continues to be soft and manageable.

Since Indigo really wasn't a completely filthy wild pony beast I brought in Stormy who desperately needed the burs taken out of her everything.

Her mane is so thick you can't even see the burs wound up in there not to mention several little tree's.

What was a forelock.

And her tail. What the heck did she do to the top? It was glued down with mud.I got to spraying some on and literally combed out the burs. No getting the little stickers stuck in my fingers like when I tugged them out by hand. I combed them out. I also found my sheepskin mitt was helpful. I sprayed it on and smoothed it with the mitt. The reason I did this was because I found it really made my hands slick long after it actually dried off my palms.

Lovely mane after

And forelock
And tail

So there we have it.

The pro's and con's of Absorbine finishing mist.

Pro's- The spray is quiet and even the sprayophobe Sheba didn't flinch. It's non aerosol and friendly for the atmosphere. It smells awesome. Better than the original show sheen. It makes me want to sniff manes all day (I admit I may have a problem) it does indeed de-tangle though it is meant as a coat spray. The spray is very accurate enabling you to target little areas which is convenient for de-tangling. It lasts through weather for a few days. It keeps dust and dirt at bay on the hair coat.
NOTE: I have been using it for about a week now and I think it is safe to say it does not dry the coat like original show sheen does.

Con's- It is very slippery. It is labeled right on the bottle "do not use near saddle area". I find my hands are slick as snot after smoothing it into the hair so I found a sheepskin mitt very convenient ($7 at wal mart in the auto section) either that or you need to wash your hands or wear gloves if you intend to ride. The spray is very accurate. I both love and loathe this because sometimes you want a little bit of spray in a large area not the opposite. Depends on what you are using it for I guess. I am afraid to leave this in the barn because it's getting colder. Even under the heat lamp in fear it might explode with the cooler temperatures if it froze a little bit. Made braiding very difficult.

My conclusion- If you show and you need your horse to look shiny this stuff is a must have. It really did, in my opinion work better than original show sheen. It made the hair softer, repelled dust and smells great. I imagine if I need more and it's in our local tack shop I will pick up another bottle for next show season. Santa fe is still my favorite as far as concentrated detanglers, which Absorbine makes.

Plus the neat thing about the Absorbine company is it's a family run company having been passed down genorations. Sean explained in his e-mail:

"We are continuing to make ShowSheen in the regular bottles (16 oz, 32 oz spray, 32 oz refill and gallon) but are also offering it now in the "continuous spray" non-aerosol can that I'm sending you. Both the traditional style bottle and the new "Mist" style contain the same new formula- same stuff, two different delivery systems. I would like to stress that the new formula has all of the same properties folks have come to expect from ShowSheen, just that we've added even more nutritives to make the hair healthier. You can recognize the new ShowSheen that has added hair health ingredients by it's new bottle color and label (the bottle has a "pearl" color to it) or if it's in the Mist style can. We've had many reports form barns that the horses who use the new formula have nicer manes, tails and coats that the one who don't. "

I was sure glad to hear that. People usually get bent out of shape when a long loved product changes. I think this new finishing spray is a very good idea. Plus if I didn't love absorbines products before I read the history on their blog.
I love, love, love, love that the original absorbine was created as the alternative to painful methods of blistering. The history tells us right there that back in the day when the product was created the horses welfare was thought of first when it usually was last because the horse was thought of as a tool. Treating animals as we would like to be treated, something some people still fail to realize even in this day and age.

So who else out there has used the finishing mist? It's pretty new. How did you like it. Is there anything I missed?


Carol said...

I love Show Sheen and use it at shows (it's a bit too drying to use all the time). Do you know if the mist is drying too?
Thanks for the info.

Natural Manners Horsmanship said...

I too LOVE show sheen, and have tried friends' other brands that they swear by...I hate them all! Give me show sheen or give me death. I will have to look for this new product you reviewed, as my current bottle is almost empty!
thanks for the review!

Mare said...

LOVE Show Sheen...probably couldn't live without it...Thanks for the review!

Nuzzling Muzzles said...

I'm going to have to invest in something, because this time of year the horses are getting so much mud on their legs, necks and faces -- basically any body part that isn't covered by their winter blankets. I can't wash them, because it's too cold. The water would instantly freeze. And this gunk refuses to be brushed out.

Laura M. said...

I'm blessed to have a vaccuum available at my boarding barn, but do you think the spray would help lift dirt? It would be interesting to hear if it dries out the hair as much as Show Sheen does. Thanks for the review Sydney!

Sydney_bitless said...

I didn't find the mist drying at all. I think because they have silk proteins and stuff in it now that is what they were trying to aim to do.

Crystal said...

WOw that sounds excellent, I wil have to see if I can find it!

Rising Rainbow said...

With the manes I have around here, I'm all for something a litte more than Show Sheen. I'll have to see if this new improved?? does the trick. Thanks for the review.

juliette said...

Sydney - This is a great post! Thank you for doing it. I didn't think it would apply to me at all, but then when I saw the photos and read about the burr removal of the other horse, I knew I had to get some! This really looks like it is good stuff. I am a bloodhound and most things smell too strong to me so I am nervous about the smell, but you say that it is pleasant so I am going to get some. I really appreciated the email from the company's owner or grandson, or whomever he was. It is really neat to know that they started the whole thing to be kind to horses and they are now barefoot and bitless is next. How cool is that? Thanks for this post!

Desert Rose said...

Thanks for the work review this...think I'll give it a try too!

Jeni said...

Thanks for the review Sydney. ill have to try some on Rosie's tail and mane. I've been using Cowboy Magic on it.

Grey Horse Matters said...

I haven't used the new product yet, but I think it's worth a shot (or two). I love that he wrote you a personal note about how his family started this product because they wanted to find an alternative to blistering. It's nice to find real horse people behind these products.

Laughing Orca Ranch said...

Great review, Sydney. I like that it's not just some big corporation either. And the fact that it's not just a product to make your horse look pretty, but a product that will help your horse be healthier is another plus.
I may have to get some, if only so I can bury my face in Apache's mane for that lovely Show Sheen scent. :)


achieve1dream said...

Wow that stuff sounds great!

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