Friday, February 3, 2012

Frugal Friday: Save on Suds!

Now that the weather in our area has been unseasonably warm for a few weeks, I'm starting to feel the need for a little spring cleaning around the barn. After Sam decided to turn himself into a muddy monster last night, a bath is certainly at the top of my list!

The sheer number of horse shampoos available on the market can be mind-boggling, not to mention pricey. I recently saw a 500ml (16.9 oz.) bottle of plain-Jane, no-frills shampoo for sale in my local tack shop for $19.00. Yikes!

What's a girl to do when she wants a clean horse, but doesn't want to pay a small fortune on shampoos and conditioners at the tack shop? Hit the local grocery stores and supermarkets! Although the products may not be "specially formulated" for your horse, many human products contain the same (or better) cleaning ingredients than their specialized counterparts for a fraction of the price. What's not to love?

One of my favorite grocery-aisle grooming products is Ultra Ivory Concentrated Dishwashing Liquid soap. As with all Ivory products, the dish soap is made of only natural, organic ingredients that are biodegradable and will not remove the natural oils from skin. In addition to its common-sense use as a soap for scrubbing feed bins and buckets, I swear by Ivory Dishwashing Liquid as a mild shampoo and bit cleaner.

Product Image Courtesy

When I bathe a horse, I typically dilute 2-3 oz. of Ivory soap in approximately 4 gallons of lukewarm water and use a sponge or wash cloth to work the soap into the coat, mane, and tail. I've found that Ivory works into a nice lather that gets up all of the dirt and dandruff without requiring an epic scrubbing battle. Even better? The diluted soap rinses out easily without leaving an icky, skin-drying film behind.

A 24 oz. bottle of Ivory Dishwashing Liquid usually sells for approximately $3.00 in grocery stores and supermarkets, but larger quantities are available. If you have a big barn with lots of horses, buckets, and other "stuff" to clean, and other online retailers offer bulk-buy packages of two to six 90 oz. bottles for as little as 10 cents an ounce.

The Breakdown:
24 oz. Ivory Soap: $3.00 / 24 oz. = approximately 12 cents per ounce.
16.9 oz. basic horse shampoo: $18.95 / 16.9 oz. = approximately $1.12 per ounce.

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