Dyeing Horse Hair
Disclaimer: We do not have the expertise, or experience, in dyeing horse hair ourselves. The information provided below is very general as we are not the final authority on dyeing horse hair by any means.
Horse hair comes in natural colors, ranging from white to various shades of brown, black, blonde, and even mixed. However, if you are interested in a different color for your project, it is possible to dye the horse hair using three options: fabric dyes, natural dyes, or hair salon dyes.
Fabric dyes, such as RIT dye, are available in dry powder or liquid form, and can be found in most art stores. Dry dyes are preferrable because they can be stored longer than liquid dyes, but both work equally well. These are usually available in a wide range of colors.
If you want softer, muted colors, you can use plant-based natural dyes. These are usually derived from berries, flowers, bark and roots. As some natural ingredients produce different results than others, you might want to experiment first to see which ones work best.
Hair salon dyes are made for human hair and will react differently on horse hair. They can be used to lighten and darken colors. With so many products available, it is recommended to do some experimentation to see which products works best for you.
You can dye the hair in large bundles or in pulls, which are made by twisting several horse hair together.
When using commercial chemical or natural dyes, leave the horse hair in the dye mixture until it is darker than the final color you want it to be. Once rinsed, the color should lighten to the color desired.
To achieve the best results in color, start with natural white horse hair.
Please make sure that the pot, glass jars, or container you are using will only be used for dyeing, as these mixtures will stain and, in the case of natural dyes, are not for consumption.
It is possible to reuse chemical dye mixtures if they are sealed properly, while natural dye mixtures can be refrigerated for 1 to 2 months before they need to be thrown out. Just reheat the natural dye to reuse.