Wash Guide - Sheepskin

Wash Guide - Sheepskin main image Wash Guide - Sheepskin image
Follow our care guide to get the the best advice on washing your sheepskin numnahs and saddle pads.

We all love the benefits of a good sheepskin numnah or saddle pad. They are a costly investment – and many people don’t realise they need special care to get a long life from the sheepskin.

If you only take one piece of information away from this care guide - always allow your sheepskin products to air well immediately after use if they have become damp or wet. (either from washing or sweat)

Horses' sweat is caustic, if a product is put away damp with sweat, it will react with the sheepskin and accelerate the breakdown of the sheepskin. If you neglect drying and airing the pad after use, especially brushing out dirt and grime, the reactive process can get underway quickly depending on how damp it’s left, the acidity of the sweat, the level of dirt/grine and average air humidity levels, can all interact and start a fast reaction that can rapidly rot the leather in a few months. Often we don’t notice this until the leather/sheepskin literally disintergrates and falls away.

Follow these simple tips to get a long life from your sheepskin:

  • Keep washing to a minimum. Constant washing will remove oils from the leather, and create brittle leather.  Avoid hot water, (stay under 30c) We prefer hand washing over machine washing. Use a detergent designed for wool. (Avoid regular washing powders which nearly all contain enzymes or bleach. These enzymes break down the leather.)
  • Sheepskin products must be allowed to dry between uses so that the sheepskin is given a chance to stabilize. Once the pad is dry, a light brushing of the sheepskin with a pet brush will separate the wool fibers and help to keep the wool fluffy and resilient for the next use.
  • Sheepskin products should be line-dried out of the sun. Please do not put them in a warm dryer or on a heating device. Putting it in the dryer on a cold setting is better for the leather than letting it dry on its own, as it fluffs the air through and keeps the fibers from drying out and going hard
  • When storing, turn upside down on your saddle - sheepskin facing up to breathe. 

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