DIY Mane & Tail Growth Serum Recipe for Horses

DIY Mane & Tail Growth Serum Recipe for Horses by Savvy Horsewoman

When it comes to mane & tail growth, patience is a virtue.

There’s no quick fix that will give you instant results, but the good news is this DIY Mane/Tail Growth Serum for horses can get you headed in the right direction.

Fall is the perfect time to start, giving you lots of time before you hit the show ring next summer, and it also helps combat dryness as winter approaches.

There are many factor that affect hair growth, such as genetics, nutrition, care, turnout etc. but the main purpose of this serum is to improve the health of your horse’s scalp to maximize your efforts and strengthen the existing hair.

It takes a bit of work, but really, is there anything more spectacular than a long, flowing, Friesian-inspired tail?

The key ingredient in this recipe is Castor Oil, which is loaded with hair boasting benefits. It’s naturally anti-bacterial and anti-fugal which helps the fight against dandruff, and contains ricinoleic acid, which helps to stimulate the hair follicles, improve circulation and balance pH levels.

It’s also loaded with antioxidants that work to strengthen hair and reduce frizz. Another bonus is the price! It’s super affordable for long term use.

DIY Mane/Tail Growth Serum Recipe

3 parts Castor Oil
1 part oil(s) of your choice*
Essential Oils (optional, but Rosemary, Lavender and Peppermint are all known for supporting hair growth, and smell great!)

*I’d recommend one (or a combination) of the following oils:

Jojoba – great all-round oil for skin and hair, fast absorbing.

Neem – strong smell, but worth it! Anti-inflammatory and soothing.

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Olive – very moisturizing and you probably have some on hand already.

Argan– adds shine and reduces frizziness.

Coconut – Anti-bacterial, anti-fugal, anti-inflammatory, too many benefits to list! The down side is in cold climates it’s solid and would need to be melted before adding to the castor oil, making a much thicker serum.

For more coconut oil info check out Coconut Oil for Horses – Top 10 Uses.

My personal favorite is a mix of castor/jojoba/neem oil with lavender and rosemary essential oils.

How to Use the Serum

For best results, apply 1-2 times a week at the base of the mane and/or tail. Depending on how dry (or dirty) the hair is, you may want to lightly moisten it with water first.

I like to massage it in for a few minutes, helping to open the hair follicles and promote circulation. Castor oil is quite thick, so a little goes a long ways.

Start with just a few drops and leave it in for several hours, or overnight if possible.

I’ve found it’s usually absorbed within 12-24 hours, but if your horse is looking greasy it can be washed out (try this recipe for DIY Natural Horse Shampoo) or for a quick fix you can sprinkle corn starch over top and brush it out.

Disclaimer: You should always use cation around horses, and massaging the tail area is no exception, so please be safe!

Happy grooming,

DIY Mane & Tail Growth Serum Recipe for Horses by Savvy Horsewoman



  1. Lani
    January 19, 2017 / 12:06 am

    Thank you for this recipe! It really works!! My friends horse's forelock was cut off by one of the grooms taking out his braid. We have been massaging in this recipe (I also used a combo of neem and jojoba along with lavender and rosemary essential oils) for a couple of months now and his forelock has grown. Another gal in the barn asked to use some on her son's roping horse as he had no forelock and sure enough it's growing!!!!

    • Savvy Horsewoman
      January 19, 2017 / 7:41 pm

      Thanks for your feedback, I'm so glad it's working well for you 🙂

    • HorsewomanNz
      March 22, 2018 / 2:33 am

      Hi Lani, can you elaborate on the quantities (ie: drops of essential oils) you used in your blend? Thanks 🙂

  2. Lauren Alexandra
    May 1, 2018 / 10:54 pm

    What do you use to store this in? For personal use I store my oils in dark glass containers but I'm worried about having glass in the barn. I'm also curious about the amount of essential oils you use.Thank you!

  3. Elizabeth A England
    May 15, 2018 / 12:09 pm

    Can you leave the serum in the horse’s mane/tail after each use or do you have to wash it out?

    • savvyhorsewoman
      May 19, 2018 / 9:17 am

      It should absorb into the mane/tail on it’s own, so it can be left on. Start with small amounts first, a little goes a long ways!

  4. Jessica
    September 12, 2018 / 8:36 am

    Could you add Geranium oil to this recipe to keep ticks out of the mane and tail? In another post, I believe you said you didn’t use Geranium oil directly on the skin but put it on fly masks, fly boots, etc. Would it be okay to apply to the skin if it was diluted?

    • savvyhorsewoman
      September 13, 2018 / 9:44 am

      Yes, and that’s a great idea!

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