Have you seen all of the ads on Instagram and Facebook for these waterless horse shampoos? Well I have been seeing them all over the place. And being the way I am, I wanted to see if I could make my own DIY waterless horse shampoo.

But I have to say, this has been the most difficult potion to reverse engineer. That is, until now. I think I have found the secret ingredient to the waterless shampoo. Which is a good thing. Because that means I can make my own now.

And I really needed to figure this out. Not only for my sheer curiosity, but because of Plezant.

Plezant is a very greedy eater. And when he is eating his slop, he really gets into it. Which means it gets all over his face.

And while I can brush it away, it still lives a residual on his face.

And then there is Frisby. He gets a little into his food too. He also tends to get a little dusty during the winter.

Soft Homemade Horse Treats

I don’t groom as much as I should during the winter, and it shows on their faces. But if I had a waterless shampoo that made it a little bit easier, I know I would do better. And now, I can. Because you see, I figured out how to do it!

DIY Waterless Horse Shampoo

I did this a little backward. First I came up with a conditioning shine spray, and then I figured out the ingredients for the waterless shampoo. I tend to do things in this order all the time.

But don’t worry, even though I made the shine spray first, I wrote about this one first! And today I wanted to share the DIY waterless shampoo recipe with you. It works so well, and it is 100% DIY style.

I have used waterless shampoos in the past. Cowboy Magic makes one. It’s called Green Spot Remover. And absorbine has one too. It’s called Miracle Groom. They both work just fine. But they leave the hair very slippery. And I wanted to make my own with ingredients I can pronounce, and I know what they do. So let’s go over the ingredients first.


There are even less ingredients in my waterless shampoo than my shine spray. But they are similar. So once again, let’s go over the benefits of each of the ingredients in this waterless shampoo.

Fractionated Coconut Oil

Yep, coconut oil is used for this product. Again, I am using fractionated coconut oil because it stays in its liquid form all the time.

Coconut oil has antimicrobial properties as well as adds moisture to the skin and hair.

Witch Hazel

Witch Hazel is an astringent, and a cleaner. Which makes it a perfect addition to this waterless shampoo. It helps remove dandruff and flaky skin build up along with cleansing and removing excess dirt.

Aloe Vera Gel

Aloe Vera Gel is a natural treatment for skin disorders, as well as adding moisture. It actually holds more moisture than water does if you can believe that!

Aritha Powder

And this is it. This is the secret ingredient that makes the waterless shampoo work! Aritha powder is also called soap nut powder. And it cleanses the hair and skin naturally. It also helps to prevent dandruff and will even remove lice, in case you were wondering. It’s considered one of the best cleansing and conditioning herbs on the planet! How’s that for an epic ingredient?

Spray Bottle

While I really love the fine spray mister spray bottles, they don’t work well for this mixture. I had the best luck with a heavy duty horse spray bottle. It must be able to take the thickness of the Aritha powder and Aloe gel better. I tried several different spray bottles for this product, but this one worked the best. (Which is why I never throw an empty spray bottle away!)

Fragrance Oils, Essential Oils

I have been trained that I like a scent in everything. This includes the different potions I make for my horses.

You can add a blend of essential oils, and reap extra benefits for your waterless shampoo. Or you can do what I do and add in some fragrance oils to make it smell good. Or you can go for the ala-naturale and not add in anything. It’s up to you.

DIY Waterless Horse Shampoo

Know that you know what goes into making a waterless shampoo, how about we do it?


Add the liquid ingredients to your spray bottle. I can’t give precise measurements, because I don’t really measure. I know, that’s awful. But I just squeeze some into the bottle, and then add a little bit more if I think it needs it. But the measurements I have given are about what I used.

Then take the Aritha powder, and add about a spoonful (Tablespoon) to a small bowel, or measuring cup. Then add some warm water into the cup. And then slowly mix the powder into the water. You don’t need very much of this powder for the spray, and if you add too much it can clog up your sprayer. So err on the side of caution, and only use a little.

Once the powder is in a liquid form, add it to the spray bottle too. Next add some lukewarm water to your concoction, and put on the sprayer. You will want to leave a little room in the sprayer to allow you to shake the ingredients together. They will separate. So before each use, just give the sprayer a good shake.

And that’s it! Now you can go try out your waterless shampoo on your horse.

Using Your Waterless Shampoo

Using the shampoo is simple. You can either spray it directly on the dirty spot, or you can put the shampoo on a towel, and then apply it to your horse.

I find it better to apply to a towel, and then rub it on my horses faces. But for legs, or larger sections of body, it can be easier to just spray it on your horse. Next you just use a dry towel to scrub the dirt (or stain) away.

And if your horse gets eye boogers, it works so well to get this area nice and clean! But in this application, I would recommend spraying the shampoo on the towel, and not spraying it into your horse’s eye.

Frisby always has a lot of discharge for some reason from his eyes. And this spray shampoo has helped so much! Nothing I have used before has worked better than this to remove the dried on crusty stuff.

And once you have your horse nice and spot cleaned with this waterless shampoo, then you could add a fine mist of the DIY shine spray, and really make your horse shine!

This spray REALLY works. As an example, way up in the beginning of this post, I showed a picture of Plezant’s face, and how his mush gets stuck on his face.

Well, I sprayed some on a towel, and then rubbed his face, paying attention to the food build up area, and this was the after:

So much better right? And no scrubbing, no pulling, no drama. I rubbed it on, and then used a dry towel to dry it off. This stuff works! And it doesn’t make your horse slippery either.

I simply put it on a towel, and then wiped Frisby off, and this was the end result. Well, the front half of him was the result. I didn’t make it to his backside. But look how clean and shiny he is?!?!? I am a huge fan of this DIY. And, if you are looking for a waterless shampoo, maybe it would work for you too!


I am horse crazy and love DIY projects, and finding great deals on everything horse related. When I have a new idea, or find a great deal I love sharing this information with you........AND just to have FULL Disclosure:Affiliate Disclaimer: Some of the blog posts on my site will allow you to purchase different products and services online provided by other merchants, and not myself. Some of the links that I post on my site are “affiliate links.” This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, I may receive an affiliate commission.* I am a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for me to earn a commission by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites. *Disclosed in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

    6 replies to "DIY Waterless Horse Shampoo"

    • Rebecca Crow

      I have been looking for a recipe for a horse spray cleaner. This will do the job. I also want to use it on my four dogs. Thank you for sharing the important ingredients.

      • Lisa

        You are so welcome! I have been searching, and searching for so long, and finally I found the secret ingredient! I was so excited to make it to truly try it out before I shared it. And it works so well. I feel like a rock star trying it out! I literally just put some on a dry towel, rubbed by Frisby’s eye, and all of the eye boogers came off. I have never found anything that would do that. And with Plezant’s messy face, well the mush pellets that is his dinner really get stuck on his face and he is soooooo hypersensitive about his face. Being able to keep it clean is such a good feeling! I hope you get good results too! 🙂

    • Monica

      Looking forward to trying this! Please post your recipe for shine spray, too. Thank you!!!!!!

      • Lisa

        I promise! I am going to go try out my first batch on the boys right now, and I hope the results are as good as the waterless shampoo! 🙂

    • Kayla Pearson

      Do you have to pay for your website? What did you use to get a website? How did you get your domain name? I have one on google sites but the domain name is ridiculous. Love your channel! Subscribe to Adventures By Kayla!

    • First Name from ID Document Last Name from Document

      thank you so much for the formula I am going to try it on my horses.

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