Keeping your leather tack in good shape isn’t hard, but it does require a little extra attention. If you want your saddles, headstalls, and breast collars staying in top-notch shape, you’ll need to ensure that you aren’t making these common leather care mistakes. Don’t worry, there’s some helpful tips too!
The following products are okay to use on your tack: all-purpose cleaners, baby wipes, and food products like olive oil or mayo.
Use appropriate tack cleaners and conditioners designed for leather. Many of the products above actually turn your tack more brittle or have a PH level that is way too high. Food products can lead to bacteria buildup over time.
Leather should never get wet.
Hard leather isn’t from water, but rather improper drying. You should never dry your tack with the use of heat. Furthermore, leather is actually made in water.
Saddle soap is all you need.
While saddle soap is inexpensive and commonly used, it definitely isn’t the best option for high-quality tack. The soap can actually damage and darken the leather because of the high alkaline. Choose an option that has a better PH balance, such as Lexol
Tack needs to be oiled a lot.
Most tack has already been oiled in the construction phase. The overuse of oil can weaken and stretch out the fibers of the leather. The use of a good conditioner will provide the correct amount of oils to keep your tack hydrated.
What are your favorite tack cleaning tips?