horses in fly masks

Essential Oils – For Equestrians

I haven’t ever talked about essential oils here on my blog, unless you consider my blog post about making your own fly spray. And the other morning as I dabbed some peppermint essential oil on my neck for a headache, I thought I would share some of what I know about essential oils.

Now I want to preface this by stating this blog post should be considered for informational purpose only. I am not a doctor, nor an expert oil-ologist. I just know how I use essential oils in my every day life, and I wanted to share it with you. And no, I am not in the multi-level-marketing club of Young Living or Doterra. I have my favorite supplier of essential oils which work great, and I will share that with you later. And the links provided take you to Amazon and are links for different essential oils that I buy for myself and my horses on a regular basis. They are affiliate links, meaning if you choose to make a purchase, I may receive a small commission. This helps me to continue doing what I do here and over on my YouTube channel.

Essential Oils Are Amazing

I use essential oils for myself, and my horses almost on a daily basis. I make my own cleaning products using essential oils, as well as keep spiders and pests out of my barn using essential oils. Typically I add essential oils to carrier oils, this is what dilutes the power of the oil. I am not confident enough to apply the oils directly to my horses skin, but I do apply peppermint oil to my own neck several times a week. Did you know peppermint oil helps get rid of nausea, and headaches? It really works! And it seems to relax tight muscles too. I love the warmth it provides to my neck after I apply a drop or two.

My most favorite brand of essential oils is Eden’s Garden. I have tried DoTerra and Young Living, mainly because of all the hype of their oils. But I haven’t seen any difference honestly. And if the $9.00 for 4 ounces essential oil works as good as the $30.00 for 10 mL essential oil, guess which one I am going to use? Yep, the $9.00 oil. If you wanted to get started with several different, and popular oils, Eden’s Garden has a sampler pack of 6 different oils to get you started.

And I wanted to share some equestrian related applications of essential oils because while there are tons of articles about use of essential oils for people, there isn’t a lot out there specifically for horses, or their owners.

My Favorite Essential Oils

There are hundreds of essential oils available for us to choose from. But if you are just learning about the benefit of these oils, seeing all of the choices can be overwhelming. So I thought I would share some of my favorites and their benefits.

Peppermint Oil

This is by far my most favorite essential oil. It has so many applications which is probably why it’s my favorite Peppermint oil is a stimulant, antispasmodic, antiviral, antimicrobial, antifungal, and antioxidant. It is an effective treatment for headaches as well as deterrent for spiders. I absolutely love peppermint oil. I love it so much, this is the oil I buy in the larger sizes, because I use it so much.

This is by far my most favorite essential oil. It has so many applications which is probably why it’s my favorite Peppermint oil is a stimulant, antispasmodic, antiviral, antimicrobial, antifungal, and antioxidant. It is an effective treatment for headaches as well as deterrent for spiders. I absolutely love peppermint oil. I love it so much, this is the oil I buy in the larger sizes, because I use it so much.

Want to keep spiders out of your barn? Simply put 5 or 6 drops of the oil onto cotton balls and then put them into hidden corners of your tack room. It really does help to keep the spiders away. And it smells so good! Well, if you like the smell of peppermint that is.

Sweet Orange Oil

a picture of oranges and essential oil

The orange scent alone is instantly uplifting and energizing. And there has been research done that shows sweet orange essential oil helps boost mood and increase energy. But it also has a variety of other health benefits. Sweet orange oil can fight acne, relieve inflammation, promote better digestion, and improve the appearance of skin. It can also be used around the house (and barn) to disinfect surfaces and freshen the air.

But if you are buying this oil for the first time, be sure to only buy sweet orange oil, not the bitter one.

Tea Tree Oil

tea tree essential oil in a brown bottle

Tea Tree oil was the first ever essential oil I had ever heard of, or ever used. You see I was a hairstylist for 16 years, and Paul Mitchell had a shampoo called Tea Tree shampoo. It worked great, and then they released the actual oil. I used it a lot.

Tea Tree oil is also called Melaleuca oil and is distilled from the leaves of the Melaleuca alternifolia plant, which is found in Australia. The oil possesses antibacterial, anti-inflammatory, antiviral, and antifungal properties. And this is a very strong oil. It should always be diluted using a carrier oil. I have seen people apply the oil directly to open wounds thinking it will be helpful (if a little is good, more is better) but this oil is so strong, it has to be diluted and used with care. Tea Tree oil should never be swallowed, no matter what you might read on the internet.

Carrier Oils

carrier oils for blending essential oils

You may be wondering what the heck is a carrier oil? I talk about carrier oils a lot. And a carrier oil is also known as base oil and is used to dilute essential oils before they are applied to the skin. They are so named carrier oils because they carry the essential oil onto the skin. Diluting essential oils is a critical safety practice when using essential oils.

Some of my favorite carrier oils to use are; avocado oil, coconut oil, jojoba oil and sweet almond oil. Of all the carrier oils, the sweet almond oil is the most affordable option at about $8.30 for a 16 ounce bottle.

Essential Oils For Horses

Many of us know of the benefit of essential oils for people, but did you know they are safe for our horses too? As horse owners we are always looking for the best products for the animals that bring us so much joy. And yes, you can use essential oils on your horses, and around the barn as well. And not only do our horses reap the benefit, but we can too while we are at the barn!

But keep in mind, if you show your horse please check with your respective organization to make sure this is ok to use, and is not on a banned list which could exclude you from a show.

Health Hoof Salve

close up of a pair of horse hooves

This hoof salve is an awesome recipe for helping your horse to grow strong and healthy hooves. I use it twice a week for both of my horses, and a little bit really goes a long way. After I mix up a batch of this hoof salve, it usually lasts about a month for my two horses. Which means it costs me about $1.18 to make a months worth of a hoof treatment. When was the last time you found a hoof product for less than $2.00 a month?

What You Will Need

What You Will Do

Directions: Melt the coconut oil and add in the melaleuca, rosemary, and vitamin E oil mix together and then put into a container. Apply a small amount to your horses hoofs, just at the coronary band.

Joint/Ligament Homemade Liniment

a close up view of a jumper horse's legs

If your horse is older (like Frisby) or has a hard work out, having a spray on liniment type product is great to have around. I like the way it smells too! And even though it is mainly meant to be a muscle, or joint rub, it also acts as an insect repellent. So basically two products in one!

What You Will Need

What You Will Do

Place carrier oil into a spray bottle (dark glass works best for essential oils) then add the different essential oils. Shake gently. Then you simply spray this on sore joints of your horse. (or yourself!)

Itch Relief Spray

close up of a horse's tail

Does your horse get itchy spots? Frisby does, at the dock of his tail especially. So I mix up a batch of this anti-itch spray and spray it on the base of his tail and then massage it in. It really does the trick to stop him from rubbing his tail, and pushing all of his weight onto the fence panels of his paddock as he tries to scratch the itch!

What You Need

What You Will Do

Place carrier oil into a spray bottle (again, dark glass works best for essential oils, this is my favorite) then add the different essential oils. Shake gently. Then spray on the area that is causing irritation.

Fly Repellent Spray

There are so many different recipes for homemade fly spray. And I tend to experiment and change up the oils that I use, depending on how well it is working for my horses. But this fly spray recipe is a great one to start with. It works well and is a lot more cost effective than commercial fly sprays. I also really like to make my own fly spray because there are no pesticides in the spray.

What You Need

What You Will Do

Pour the water into your spray bottle, and then add the vinegar, liquid soap and essential oils. Shake gently and apply to your horse. Just be sure not to spray it in his eyes. For face application, spray some onto a wet wipe, or soft towel and rub on your horse’s face.

Horse Products With Essential Oils

And if you aren’t really a DIY type equestrian and would rather buy products that are made with essential oils, there are several companies that have products that I absolutely love.

Sterling Essentials

Their tag line is “Gentle on your leather, Gentle on you”. Sterling Essentials makes awesome leather cleaners and leather conditioners using essential oils. And I have to say I love them.

I had never tried their products, or even heard of them until I got a little package in a Heart To Horse box last year. But after I tried their product, I was sold. I was given the Lavender set which includes a bottle of the leather cleaner as well as a small tub of the leather conditioner. And this stuff is amazing!

a close contact english saddle

I used it on my older saddle that always had a faint smell of mildew. I had tried and tried to get rid of that smell. But no matter what I used, or how often I cleaned it, the smell was still there. That is until I used the Sterling Essentials products. After I used the cleaner and conditioner for the first time, the smell was almost gone. And then after using it a few more times, there is no more mildew smell.

And the conditioner works great to soften leather items. If you have a new bridle and you want to get fast results, this leather conditioner works wonders.

I am so pleased with the results of their products, it’s the only cleaner and conditioner I use on my tack now. And if you aren’t really sure, but want to try it for yourself, they do have a starter set which includes a bottle of the cleaner and conditioner in a 2 ounce size for $7.95 (plus shipping) on Amazon. And it lasts a long time, well the conditioner does, a little goes a long, long way at softening leather.


This is a fantastic company with fantastic products for us equestrians. They have a complete line of products for horses. And their products are natural and they don’t have pesticides, alcohol, or solvents.

bug pellent natural fly repellent for horses

My absolute favorite product that they have is the BugPellent Hanging Cylinder. I get excited about it just thinking about it! The hanging cylinder is a bug repellent for your barn and horses stall. It is comprised of beeswax pellets that have been soaked in a solution of essential oils. There are 9 different essential oils within the wax pellets that is put into a cylinder that you hang up. And the aroma is incredible. I love walking into the barn to clean it when I have these hanging up, it smells so good!

natural fly repellent

And once they aroma has gone, you don’t have to buy new cylinders. They make refill kits that include 2 ‘cartridges’ (for lack of a better name) that you simply replace. It is a very cost effective, and effective way to decrease flying pests in your barn. I love these things. And I love the way they make my barn smell.

natural fly repellent

This is simply the best product I have found to help decrease flies in my horses stalls all summer long. I hang one over each stall, and I also have one in my tack room. And I even put one in my garage to keep the flies at bay. It really works, and is worth the cost, which really isn’t that bad. A new cylinder runs $17.05, or you can buy the refill packs for $21.80 at Riding Warehouse.

I replace the cartridges about every 45 days, or when I start to notice an increase of flies in the stalls. I have 6 of the hanging cylinders now, and I have had them for over 2 years. So they do last a long time.


equi-spa horse care products

I have actually written an article about this company before. And they have an entire line of horse care products that are made using essential oils.

My favorite is the Sheath and Udder Cleaner. Which if you have a gelding, you know that you should clean this area periodically. This cleaner helps proper sheath and udder cleaning to ensure the health and well-being of your horse. And it works by softening the debris for easy removal. It also helps to soothe and moisturizes inflamed skin and sore spots. And it deodorizes and protects against the build-up of dirt and sweat to prevent yeast and bacterial infections.

It works very well for it’s intended purpose and it washes away easily. I really like this product, and I think my horses tolerate me cleaning their ‘sensitive’ areas better because of this.

equi-spa horse care products

Equi-Spa has other products too. The one I am looking forward to trying next is the Fairy Tails spray. And since I am writing this post, I decided I have to try this now, so I just ordered it. Thanks Amazon Prime for free shipping.

I have been on the search for an incredible detangler ever since my favorite stopped being made. (Kiss My Horse Mane and Tail Detangler) I was so sad. I loved that product so much. And now since Ms Conn’s isn’t making products any longer, I have been on the hunt for a replacement. I am hoping the Fairy Tails is what I have been searching for.

Essential Oils Are Great!

I am sure you can see, I am very passionate about essential oils. Not only for myself, but for my horses too. I really like to use natural products on my boys, and essential oils are the most natural you can get. There are so many different ways to use essential oils, and the recipes and applications I have listed for you are just the tip of the iceberg!

Have you ever used essential oils? What is your favorite way to use them? I would love to know your thoughts!


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.

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