Unrestrictive fit with generous eye holes. Well-fitting and non-slip. Straps held up well to frequent use, but slight signs of wear on the noseband. Kept plaits in and proved great for mane training. Fast-drying.
Snuggy Hoods Lycra hood
Made from breathable nylon with an adjustable noseband and chest strap. Also available with a zip.
Durable, true to size and didn’t slip. Straps were easy to use and the adjustable noseband was great for pulling it on. Ear covers were a bonus. Kept the coat clean and plaits intact. Dried within an hour.
WeatherBeeta stretch hood
Super-stretchy with an elastic noseband. Ideal for use under rugs to prevent rubbing.
Very smart. The all-round piping kept it in perfect condition. No zip, but the fabric was stretchy enough to pull on easily and it stayed in place. Kept stains off and plaits in. Washed well and dried quickly.
Krämer Stonedeek Sleazy hood
Made from 85% polyester and 15% Lycra. Protects the coat and mane from rubs.
True to size, non-slip and easy to use. Fits well around the shoulders, kept plaits in and didn’t rub. The fabric has stained in places, though the coat always stayed clean. Washed well and dried quickly.
Horseware Dalmar tendon boots
Carbon fibre strike protection and a quick-wrap fastener for ease of use.
“I really liked these stylish, two-toned overreach boots. They were easy to put on and didn’t lose their shape after washing. A wipe or hose down was all they needed after exercise, and they stayed securely in place while hacking and jumping. However, I found the sizing quite small. They offered great protection, so I feel they’d be useful for cross-country.”
Neoprene boots with a patent crocodile skin design and sheepskin collar
“I really like the styling – they’re a bit flashier than other boots, so great for schooling or working in at dressage competitions. They’re very easy to put on and remove, and the fastenings stayed secure despite lots of use. They could twist a little, but still offer very good protection.”
With a strike-proof outer shell, they have Velcro closures and a neoprene lining and collar
“These boots proved to be robust and flexible, and suitable for turnout as well as riding. I like the soft lining and they didn’t rub. There are a few small scrapes on the strike pad, so they’ve done their job, but no other signs of damage. They’re very easy to keep clean – a wipe-over with a sponge had them looking like new.”
Kentucky Air Tech
Close-contact, shaped boots that contain shock-absorbing gel
“These stylish boots are wonderfully lightweight, even when wet, and didn’t mark or rub my horse. They offer great protection and didn’t move. The only downside is that the sizing comes up small. The Velcro fastenings are secure, and easy to do up and remove. I feel they’d be suitable for all activities, including eventing and turnout.”
Fouganza Optimum Protect
Made with Velcro fastenings and a reinforced strike area
“I used these boots for turnout and riding, including flatwork and cross-country schooling. Thanks to the bulb at the back and double closure fastening, they stayed secure. They’re true to size and the reinforced section offered great protection, while staying comfortable with the soft lining. I was really impressed with the quality for the price.”
A tough nylon outer with a synthetic trim and chloroprene rubber lining and cuff
“They’re exactly what you want from an overreach boot – great protection, and easy to put on and take off. I’ve used them for everything from turnout to schooling and hacking out. They didn’t slip once or rub my horse. I was really happy with them, as not only did they perform well, they did so at a brilliant price.”
Leather-look boots with a neoprene lining and Velcro closures
“These lightweight boots were great for everyday use and smart enough for competitions, too. The neoprene was ideal for the warmer weather and they didn’t rub, fall off or slip. The only downside was that the material collects dust and dirt, although they wash and wipe down easily. They’re true to size and, as a bonus, match my cross-country colours!”
Premier Equine Kevlar No-Turn
Made from kevlar and microfibre leather, they feature an ultra-shock lining
“These boots were fantastic. They stayed firmly in place and never twisted or moved when hacking or jumping. However, the sizing did come up quite small. They didn’t rub at all, were easy to wipe clean and stayed looking smart. The strike pad picked up a little bit of dirt, but this was quickly brushed off once dry.”
Arma Fur Trimmed
Breathable, lightweight boots that offer high impact protection
“These boots didn’t rub, seemed breathable and dried quickly. They give really good coverage and I like the strike pads. The Velcro was secure, even during fast work and jumping, yet I could easily take them off with one hand. They did loosen a bit during the test period, but I just tightened the fastenings. The black fur stayed fluffy despite being washed and worn through water.”
KM Elite Pro Mesh with Lambswool
Shaped boots with a double mesh outer, toughened strike area and Merino collar
“These boots look so comfy thanks to the lambswool collar. They fitted well, but I had to use a size larger than usual. They’re tough, despite being lightweight, and haven’t shown any signs of wear. The Velcro didn’t budge, even in the wet and mud, and the no-turn ball prevented them from spinning.”
Reinforced boots with an anatomical fit, no-turn ball and PVC outer shell
“The tough outer shell offered great protection, and I like the cushioned inner for comfort. They’re true to size and didn’t rub at all. The no-turn balls worked well, and the Velcro fastenings were really easy to put on and take off. I was so impressed with these boots, as they met all my expectations at a reasonable price.”
Shaped boots with a tough strike area and neoprene collar
“The boots feel well-made, although they come up a little small. The Velcro fastening stayed secure while schooling and hacking, and they didn’t twist. My horse has a tendency to overreach, but these offered plenty of protection. They’re smart enough for lessons and competitions, and I’d recommend them to anyone looking for a simple, practical boot that’s made to last.”
Bridleway Fleece Trimmed Quick Fit
Featuring a synthetic fleece trim and touch-tape fastenings
“These boots are basic, but served their purpose well. They offered good protection for jumping and flatwork, and I like that I could match them to my cross-country colours. The fastenings were secure, but the boots spun a bit because there was nothing else to keep them in place. The rubber didn’t split and the trim stayed fluffy, even after going in the washing machine.”
Veredus Safety Bell
Shock-absorbing boots with a padded collar and neoprene lining
“They’re well made and offer excellent heel protection, and I like the soft lining and padded cuff. They stayed secure for hacking, schooling and turnout, and also for travelling on hot days, and they seemed breathable. I love the tab on the closure, which makes them so easy to remove. They’re quite pricey, but have performed and washed well, and still look great, too.”
WeatherBeeta Pure Wool Trim
With a TPU mesh outer and neoprene lining, they feature a wool trim collar
“The wide Velcro tabs offer plenty of adjustment, and make them really easy to put on and take off. They were great for schooling, jumping and roadwork, but I found that grass seeds got caught in the sheepskin cuffs when hacking off-road, which were fiddly to remove. The no-turn balls were pretty effective, and overall they’re smart and stylish.”
Majyk Equipe Over Reach
A tough TPU mesh outer with an antibacterial neoprene lining
“These boots are robust with classy pops of colour. They start off a bit stiff, but soon become more pliable without losing any toughness. I found they could turn slightly when going at speed, but always settled back to the correct position. The fastenings were secure and they cleaned easily, often with just a blast from the hose. Overall, I’m really pleased with them.”
Equilibrium Field Relief Max
Strong mesh with sponge padding and shaped darts for eye clearance.
Sizes: XS – XL
UV protection: 80%
The verdict: Offers a close, comfortable fit for maximum protection all summer.
“The elasticated sections meant the mask fitted snugly around my horse’s face. Despite the close fit and lack of fleece binding, it didn’t rub his sensitive skin and he stayed cool in warm weather. The mesh didn’t touch his face and held its shape, plus it was easy to clean and lasted well – I’d definitely recommend it.”
Felix Bühler Basic
A light, fitted fly mask with a fleece trim and extra-soft mesh ears.
Sizes: XXS – XL
The verdict: A comfortable design that stays secure, even during playtime antics.
“The fly mask fitted my horse well, although the straps were quite long and I had to trim the ends. He was comfortable wearing it and the fluffy trim meant that it didn’t rub. It stayed secure on his face, despite lots of field antics with his pals, although its colour showed the dirt. He’ll be able to wear it again this summer and I’d buy it again.”
Shires Fine Mesh with Ears
Made from strong mesh with fleece padding at the seams.
Sizes: small pony – extra-full
UV Protection: 90%
The verdict: Offers a snug fit in a colour that will help your horse stand out from the crowd.
“The lightweight ear netting kept my horse cool and I liked the elasticated edge, which offered a snug fit that flies couldn’t penetrate. However, I’d have preferred the mesh over the eyes to have more structure, as I found it could collapse during the day. After lots of use it’s still in reasonably good condition.”
Bucas Buzz-off Full Face
Features an extended nose cover for extra protection and elasticated straps.
Sizes: XXXS – XL
UV Protection: 80%
The verdict: An innovative design that offers all-over protection.
“I was very impressed with the mask and my horse seemed comfortable wearing it. It offered lots of protection, although the curved nose got dirty where it covered his nostrils. The mask stayed in place even when he wore it all day. It still looks almost new after lots of washing and wear.”
Premier Equine Buster
Made from lightweight polyester mesh with anti-rub bindings.
Sizes: XXS – XL
UV Protection: 70%
The verdict: Effective protection for sensitive horses if you’re on a budget.
“My horse is a magnet for flies, but this mask gave him plenty of protection. It held its shape well and didn’t rub his sensitive skin. The Velcro fastening was really secure, but I found bits of grass could get caught in it and they were quite fiddly to remove. Overall I’m really pleased with it and he should be able to wear it again this summer.”
Horseware Rambo Plus with Vamoose
Durable mesh with insect control technology and raised eye protection.
Sizes: small pony – horse
UV protection: 60-70%
The verdict: A clever design that helps to deter even the most persistent of insects.
“This mask proved really effective. The fly repellent treatment was a big bonus, as I found I didn’t need to use as much fly spray. Although the material was quite thick, my horse didn’t sweat in hot weather and it was really robust. It’s showing no signs of damage after a whole summer of use and I’d buy it again.”
HKM Anti-fly with nose protection
Anti-rip mesh with a removable nose net, soft lining and extra room over the eyes.
Sizes: S – XL
The verdict: A super-tough mask that’s ideal for destructive horses.
“The best thing about this mask is how robust it was. My horse has ripped his last few, but this one is still intact after lots of wear. However, the material was quite thick and stiff, and he managed to remove it several times, even though the fastenings stayed secure. The removable nose net was a useful feature.”
LeMieux Comfort Shield Regular Standard
Includes a Merino lambswool lining at the brow and a padded nose for extra comfort.
Sizes: S – XL
UV Protection: 95%
The verdict: A durable fly mask that stands up well to plenty of wear.
“I was delighted with this fly mask. It provided great protection and lasted really well. My horse wore it comfortably for long periods, the fastening was robust and it washed easily. It’ll do plenty more summers and I’d definitely buy another one when it finally falls apart.”
Noble Outfitters Guardsman
Heavy-duty mesh with a flexible canopy to keep it out of your horse’s eyes.
Sizes: S – XXL
UV protection: 96%
The verdict: A well-fitting design made from robust materials.
“The mask fitted my horse well and offered plenty of protection. The mesh stayed clear of his eyes and I loved the styling, but the material was quite thick and stiff, so my horse got sweaty during very hot weather. Other than that, it’s a clever design that lasted well through the summer.”
WeatherBeeta Buzz Away
Durable PVC mesh with adjustable touch-tape closures.
Sizes: Pony – Warmblood
UV Protection: 60%
The verdict: Cool and comfortable – perfect for warm summer days.
“The light, flexible material kept my sensitive horse cool. He was well protected and the soft edges didn’t rub. The fastenings were secure, but he dislodged the mask several times when rolling. I’d purchase the mask again, but perhaps in a smaller size to see if that kept it in place.”
WeatherBeeta ComFiTec Shield
Includes an ear hood, elastic wither insert, and lined shoulders, mane and tail flap.
Sizes: 4ft – 7ft 3in
The verdict: A stylish design that offers ears-to-tail coverage.
“The rug looked really good and felt good-quality. It fitted well when first put on, but could pull back if the Velcro at the front came undone. I also found the hood sometimes slipped off my horse’s ears when he put his head down. However, I really liked the full neck cover and belly flap for extra protection.”
Premier Equine Bug Buster
Breathable fabric with an antibacterial lining over the shoulder and neck.
Sizes: 5ft 6in – 7ft 3in
The verdict: A well-designed rug that’s secure enough for playtime antics in the field.
“The rug provided great all-over coverage. It was well cut, meaning it stayed in place and allowed my horse to move freely, although the sizing was generous and he comfortably wore a size smaller than usual. It did exactly what it says on the tin and I’d buy it again.”
Bucas Buzz-Off Full Neck
Fine, lightweight mesh that blocks insects and provides UV protection.
Sizes: 4ft – 7ft 2in
The verdict: A robust rug with innovative fastenings and a design that keeps bugs at bay.
“I really liked this rug. It gave great coverage, especially with the extra belly protection, and the magnetic catch on the front fastening was really handy. My horse seemed very comfortable in it and after a whole summer of regular wear it’s still completely intact, ready for another year.”
Horseware Amigo Bug Rug
Soft fabric with sun-reflecting properties and a mane lining.
Sizes: 5ft 6in – 7ft
The verdict: Comfortable protection for horses who are less sensitive to flies.
“It’s a lovely, lightweight rug and my mare didn’t overheat, even in really warm weather. The neck was a great length and I liked the long tail flap. It sat really well and didn’t pull back or slip. It doesn’t have a belly wrap, but was perfect for my mare who isn’t particularly irritated by flies under her tummy.”
Strong, 1,000 denier fabric with a stretch panel in the neck.
Sizes: 4ft 3in – 7ft 3in
The verdict: Secure and easy to use, with a colourful design to help your horse stand out.
“The rug seemed effective and looked smart. It was true to size, but a little snug on my chunky part-native horse. The fastenings were secure and easy to do up, but I found the Velcro straps sometimes snagged on the mesh and pulled threads loose. However, I’d buy one again.”
Hardwearing fabric with a Lycra ear covering and extra-long tail flap.
Sizes: 4ft 1in – 7ft 3in
The verdict: Sturdy yet breathable fabric, making it a good choice for hot weather.
“The fabric felt quite thick, but my horse didn’t sweat and it was breathable on very hot days. It also stretched well. The fastenings were easy to do up, but I found the ears could slip off, which made the neck slip round. When the ears were in place, it provided good protection.”
JHL Ultra Fly Relief Combo
Lightweight fabric that filters the sun and has a stretch panel for freedom of movement.
Sizes: 5ft 6in – 7ft
The verdict: A colourful, lightweight rug that offers freedom of movement.
“It looked smart and I liked the pop of colour. However, I found that because it’s stretchy it could slip if worn for long periods and my horse got a bit sweaty on very hot days. It was easy to do up, really lightweight and offered reasonable fly protection.”
Shires Tempest Zebra Fly Combo
A zebra-print pattern with lining at the chest and on all seams to prevent rubbing.
Sizes: 4ft – 7ft 3in
The verdict: Smart and simple, but still offers plenty of insect protection.
“This rug was true to size and the generous depth offered plenty of protection. The fittings were easy to do up and it stayed secure, but the neck sometimes slipped down when my horse raised his head. I liked the zebra print and overall it’s a really smart rug.”
Thermomaster Zebra Combo
A fixed-neck rug with a zebra pattern to confuse insects.
Sizes: 4ft 6in – 7ft
The verdict: A funky design that stands up well to plenty of wear.
“It’s still in great shape after a summer of wear and my horse seemed really comfortable in it. It stayed secure and the print was really fun. I liked how lightweight the material was, and how easy it was to put on and take off. It’s extremely good value for money.”
Derby House Classic
A light, breathable rug with a Lycra wither insert.
Sizes: 5 – 7ft
The verdict: A budget rug that offers lots of great features.
“This was a useful rug, especially for the price. However, I found it could slip back if my horse wore it all day. Other than this, it was great – I really liked the long tail guard with the elastic loop to put the tail through and the coloured binding was very eye-catching.”
Mark Todd Ultra Combo
Made from tightly woven mesh, it reflects UV rays and has anti-rub shoulder pads.
Sizes: 5ft 6in – 7ft
The verdict: A tough rug that’s built to last, ideal for horses who spend lots of time outdoors.
“It fitted my sensitive horse well and didn’t cause any rubs or pressure marks. He lives out all summer, but the rug stood up well to lots of wear, proved very durable and offered effective protection from insects. I’d highly recommend it.”
Horseware Rhino Plus rug
1,000D outer with thermobonded 200g fibre fill and anti-static and anti-bacterial lining.
5ft 6in – 7ft 3in
The verdict: A practical, hard-wearing rug, could be deeper in the body.
“The fit was true to size and the rug was really warm without being bulky. The front clasp meant it didn’t slip or move, and the neck was easy to do up, and to put on and remove. It isn’t very deep the body – it only just came past my eventer’s elbows, despite being the right length – so it’s best suited to a lightweight horse.”
Bucas Irish Extra rug
1,200D ripstop outer with 150g filling, silk-feel lining and buckle chest fastenings.
Black/gold, navy/gold or ruby/grey
5ft 6in – 7ft
The verdict: Hard-wearing and an excellent fit – worth the investment.
“The fit was good and the lining was really soft and silky, and didn’t rub. The chest fastening is very secure and didn’t gape, but was a bit fiddly to do up. I found the removable neck a good fit, without any slipping or gaps. The material is tough and survived grooming sessions and playtime antics well.”
Horze Avalanche Pro midseason rug
1,200D ripstop outer with 150g filling, taped seams and a large tail flap.
Black or peacoat blue
5ft 6in – 7ft 3in
The verdict: Quick-drying, but tight over the wither while grazing.
“This rug was quite long and I almost needed a size smaller than usual. It kept my mare dry in heavy rain, dried quite quickly and stayed secure. The half neck stopped the rain from leaking under the rug, but the cut was quite tight over her withers and top of the shoulders when she was grazing.”
Masta Climatemasta rug
1,200D ripstop outer with 100g filling one-click chest fastening and 100g polyester liner.
Black, grey or blue
5ft 9in – 7ft 3in
The verdict: Liner system saves space and makes the rug multipurpose.
“A good, true-to-size fit that didn’t move or rub. The changeable liner system meant it was quick to dry and easy to clean without compromising the waterproofing of the outer rug. The liner was fiddly to secure, but once in performed brilliantly and helped keep my horse’s coat soft and silky all winter long. ”
Derby House Elite medium combo
1,680D with 200g filling, nylon lining, shaped neck and tail flap with a wind strap.
The verdict: Well-made and smart. Consider sizing down.
“This rug was generously sized and my horse fitted into a size smaller than usual. It felt well-made and looked very smart, with the reflective banding showing up well in the field. The lining was very smooth and didn’t cause any rubs. All the clip fastenings were quick and easy to use, and the extra material on the neck cover kept him dry.”
Rachael Kelly Equestrian Blue Spotty
1,200D ripstop outer with 200g filling, nylon lining and a large tail flap.
“The rug looked good and was deep, but the neck cover came up a little short. All the straps are easy to do up. The design is very striking and had quite a few admirers. The rug didn’t slip or rub, even after a roll. It kept her dry in very heavy rain, dried quickly and she was really warm even on cold days.”
Shires Highlander Original combo rug
600D ripstop outer with 200g filling and taped seams.
Navy/orange or horse print
4ft – 7ft 3in
The verdict: A good value, tough rug with fun design.
“The rug was true to size and the tough fastenings kept it secure without slipping or rubbing. It held up well to the weather, keeping him warm and dry, while the gussets allowed freedom of movement. I loved the fun print and thought it was good value for money. However, I’d preferred a detachable neck.”
Bridleway Ontario medium combo rug
600D ripstop outer with 220g filling, anti-rub neck and anti-rust fittings.
Black/blue or apple print
4ft 6in – 7ft
The verdict: A smart, functional rug, with thoughtful extras.
“It was smart and true to size, with a generous neck cover, although the tail flap was a bit small. The chest buckles were fiddly, so I’d have preferred clips, but the rug stayed secure and didn’t rub or slip. It stayed waterproof, even in heavy rain, and dried quickly. I like that it came with a spare square of material for repairs.”
Mark Todd mediumweight
600D ripstop outer with 250g filling, nylon anti-rub lining and quick-release front fastenings.
“This rug fitted my horse really well and was deep in the shoulders. It didn’t slip, rub or leak and dried fairly quickly. The material felt light, even when wet, but still kept my horse warm. The neck was quick to take on and off, although I’d have preferred it to have clip fastenings. It was easy to use and looked really smart.”
John Whitaker Chiserley rug
800D ripstop outer with 200g filling, detachable hood and large tail flap.
“This rug fitted my mare well. She’s easily rubbed, so I have to be careful what rug I choose for her, but I had no problems at all and she wore it all winter while living out 24/7 – the large tail flap was a real advantage. The neck provided good coverage and protection from the elements and the fastenings were easy to do up.”
Equithème Tyrex Polka Dot rug
600D ripstop polyester outer with 200g filling, large tail flap and taped seams.
5ft 3in – 6ft 9in
The verdict: Good in bad weather, but you can’t adjust the chest straps.
“This rug was a good fit and didn’t rub or slip. It kept my horse warm, dried quite quickly and didn’t leak. The large tail flap was great as it didn’t move and kept his quarters dry, even in windy conditions. I liked the design as it was a practical colour and looked smart. However, the chest straps were quite stiff and didn’t allow for any adjustment.”
Horseware Amigo 3 in 1 Exercise Sheet
Waterproof with reflective strips and a detachable fleece inner layer that can be used separately.
The verdict: Versatile, innovative design that fits well and looks the part, as well as performing.
“I absolutely love this sheet. The price is more than I thought I’d want to pay, but it really is 3-in-1 and I found it so useful in every season. The waterproof layer on its own didn’t cause my horse to sweat up and kept her totally dry, while the fine fleece was smart for shows and was a real advantage when warming up. The two sheets are easy to fasten together and transform into a great autumn or winter weight sheet that’s warm and waterproof.”
Bucas Recuptex Therapy Exercise Sheet
Waterproof, breathable and reflects your horse’s natural magnetic field back towards him
The verdict: Waterproof and secure, but not warm enough for very cold weather.
“This sheet was great and didn’t budge, even when my horse was very lively! It’s waterproof, but thin, so I could use it even during summer showers, but it might not be warm enough in really cold weather. I like the idea of the magnet therapy system – my horse is a veteran, so anything I can do to keep him at his best is good peace of mind. He’s long and tall, so fitted an XL well, but not chunky, so really big horses might struggle to find a suitable fit.”
Mark Todd Waterproof Exercise Sheet
A wrap-around, waterproof design with fleece lining and reflective piping.
SIZE 4ft 6in – 5ft
The verdict: Smart and secure – perfect for hacking in wet weather.
“It was smart and true to size, and I really liked that I could take it on and off while the saddle was in place. I found it useful when hacking to lessons, as I could easily remove it once there, and the reflective strips were a good idea for roadwork. The cut-away area at the girth stopped muddy boots rubbing on the sheet, helping it stay clean. I found it kept my horse dry and warm on rainy hacks and stayed in place even in canter.”
WeatherBeeta 600D Exercise Sheet
Waterproof, featuring a touch-tape wither closure, tail cord and reflective stripes.
The verdict: Versatile and well-made, but would benefit from a tail flap.
“The sheet is well-made and looked smart. It was easy to put on and I liked the way it’s shaped over the saddle flap – the high cut meant there wasn’t any bulk under my lower leg. It fitted well over my horse’s quarters, although it doesn’t have a tail flap. The fabric kept his quarters dry in the rain. I also liked the reflective stripes for roadwork, but they could be bigger. On the whole, it was a good fit and stayed in place, only moving back slightly.”
Kramer Romy Exercise Sheet
Waterproof and made from 600D rip-stop fabric, with a silky lining and reflective piping.
The verdict: Lightweight rain protection, but may not fit larger saddles.
“It fitted perfectly and was true to size. The fact the sheet didn’t go under the saddle made it easy to put on and take off if the rain passed, but I did find the hole a little small for my 18in saddle. The Velcro fastenings were secure, so the sheet stayed in place very well without slipping back and kept my horse dry. I really liked how lightweight it was, which meant he didn’t get sweaty, and thought the price was very reasonable.”
HKM Waterproof Exercise Sheet
Anti-rip fabric with a fleece lining and Velcro fastenings.
COLOURS Black or blue
SIZE 5ft 6in – 6ft 9in
The verdict: Robust and easy to use, perfect for larger horses.
“The deep sides fitted my large horse well, as sheets usually look like miniskirts on him! I used it at a show and found it easy to put on and take off. It didn’t seem to move when in use, and my horse seemed comfortable and unrestricted. Out hacking, the outer material didn’t snag on branches and brambles, and the fact you can wear it over your legs meant that we both stayed warm and dry. It was very good value for the quality.”
Horze ProTek Exercise Sheet
Fleece-lined and water resistant with reflective piping and Velcro fastenings.
“The sheet was true to size and fitted my horse perfectly. It was very easy to put on after tacking up and the fastenings stayed secure, but I’d recommend using the detachable fillet string to stop the edges blowing up. My horse seemed comfortable and the sheet provided him with just the right amount of extra cover. He stayed dry in the rain and the fleece lining didn’t get sweaty or hold moisture. I thought it was good value for money and would buy it again.”
Fouganza Allweather Exercise Sheet
Waterproof, breathable and attached using an elasticated rip-tab fastening.
The verdict: Good value protection from the elements, but better for milder weather.
“This sheet fitted my horse well and was perfect in heavy rain. The fastening was a little fiddly, as it attaches to the girth, which unfortunately I couldn’t do on my monoflap saddle, so I attached it to my stirrup leathers. Due to not having a fleece lining, it didn’t offer my horse much warmth, so I only used it when the weather wasn’t cold. It’s also quite dark and could perhaps feature a hi-vis strip. However, the sheet is very good value for money and definitely kept my horse dry in the rain.”
Back on Track Exercise Supreme Rug
Made from technical fabric that radiates infrared waves back towards the body.
SIZE 5ft 9in – 7ft
The verdict: A smart, technical sheet, but not ideal for wet weather.
“This sheet fitted my mare perfectly and didn’t slip while I was riding or cause any rubs. She felt really loose and supple during warm-ups, and after plenty of wear it still looks as good as new. It’s not waterproof, so it was only suitable when it was cold, dry weather, or while working indoors, which was slightly frustrating, as I like to use an exercise sheet during rain showers, but it performed well. Apart from this, it’s a great rug, even if it’s a little pricey.”
Catago Urban Tech Exercise Sheet
Made from quilted fabric that wicks away heat and moisture.
COLOURS Black or army green
The verdict: Easy to put on and take off, making it perfect for competitions.
“As a dressage rider, this quarter sheet was spot-on for me. My favourite feature was the stirrup loop attachments, which meant there wasn’t excess fabric around the saddle. It was brilliant for warming up and cooling down at shows because it was easy to put on or take off without dismounting. It fitted well and has generous, deep sides. My horse seemed comfortable wearing it and stayed warm, making it perfect for chilly, dry days. I would buy it again.”
Thermatex QR Exercise Sheet
Knitted, wicking fabric that moulds to the shape of your horse, secured with a hook-and-loop fastening and fillet string.
COLOURS Wide variety
The verdict: A higher price, but a high-quality, top-performing, super-smart exercise sheet.
“This sheet was easy to fit and looked really smart. It kept my mare warm and I found that it even repelled light rain, which just seemed to bead on the surface rather than soak through to her coat. I was worried that she’d get too hot in it, because the fabric seemed quite warm, but that wasn’t the case – it seemed to breathe really well during exercise. I really like that it doesn’t fit over the wither, because it eliminated bulk under my leg and the risk of rubbing her mane or pulling on her wither.”
Shires Tempest Jersey Fleece
Featuring wicking fabric, touch-close front fastenings, girth loops and reflective strips.
COLOURS Black/bright green or navy/bright blue
SIZE 48–60in WEBSITE
The verdict: Cosy and comfortable, but a magnet for hair and hay.
“A smart-looking fleece that’s cosy. It was true to size and stayed in place. The cut-out design was useful when waiting around at shows, as the sheet could be removed without dismounting. I also liked that it didn’t interfere with the saddle or numnah. My horse found it comfortable and stayed warm, but not sweaty. I found it attracted hair and hay, but it was easy to wash and dried quickly.”
Equisafety Hi Vis wrap-around
Waterproof and lined with quilted fabric that wicks away moisture.
COLOURS Pink, orange, yellow or polite design
SIZE Pony – extra-full
The verdict: Useful for hacking, but not ideal for horses with ticklish tummies.
“It didn’t slip when I was riding and the detachable chest strap was useful for hacking. The saddle hole was a bit short, so the sheet bunched up a bit behind the cantle, and my horse didn’t like the detachable strap that ran under his tummy to stop the edges flapping. I rode without it, which meant that if it was a breezy day the edges flapped a bit, but he wasn’t too bothered.”
Fleece-lined with reflective piping and strips on both sides and across the tail flap.
SIZE 4ft 6in – 5ft
The verdict: Perfect for rainy hacks, but picks up hair.
“It fitted my gelding perfectly and didn’t move or rub while in use. The fleece lining was great for keeping him warm on chilly evenings and he stayed dry during downpours. The reflective material was bright and great for roadwork, and is the feature I liked most about this sheet. Even after a couple of washes, it still looks as good as new. The only downside is that the fleece lining collects a lot of hair during coat changes.”
Elico Garrowby exercise sheet
Waterproof with a fleece lining. Includes reflective strips on the sides and tail flap.
COLOURS Pink or yellow
SIZE 4ft 3in – 5ft
The verdict: Bright and secure, but best for really cold weather.
“The sheet was true to size and my horse seemed comfortable in it. Once I knew how to get it in the right place, it was easy to put on and, as it sits under the saddle, it stayed secure. The fluorescent fabric was very bright, which was great, and he stayed dry. However, the fleece lining was quite warm, so I would have preferred it if the sheet was thinner.”
Fieldmasta 100g fixed neck turnout rug
The neck design provides complete coverage and relieves pressure on the wither and neck, while shoulder gussets offer freedom of movement and prevent shoulder rubs.
5ft 6in – 7ft 6in
The verdict: “Plenty of technical features at a good price.”
“I liked the clever design of the neck, which has plenty of room and didn’t sit on my horse’s mane and rub it. Although it’s lightweight, the tough outer stood up to a lot of wear and tear from my lively horse and kept him dry, even in heavy rain.”
HRP GP Dual Square Wings saddle pad
Designed to exert no pressure over the lumbar spine.
White, navy or black
Pony, cob or full
The verdict: “Expensive, but a worthwhile investment.”
“It fitted well, without bulk, and the padding at the girth was great for my sensitive mare. Even after long rides it didn’t make her sweat up and still gave clearance under the saddle. It washed very well and still looks like new.”
WOW Supercool saddlecloth
Thin, 3D fabric that wicks and cushions.
Black, white, grey, bright red, orange, blue or dark red
Full in dressage or GP/jump
The verdict: “Easy-care, thin cushioning with good wicking qualities.”
“Fitting the pad was quite tricky, so I appreciated the instructions, but it stayed in place well and didn’t make my horse sweat up, although I’d prefer the binding to be a bit softer. Hair brushed off easily and the pad was very easy to clean.”
PS of Sweden Preppy Charlie saddle pad
Shiny white cotton with silver details and quick-dry lining.
Cob or full
The verdict: “Smart and well-fitting, but a magnet for loose hair.”
“It looked really smart and fitted well over my horse’s back. The fabric lost a bit of the gloss over time, but it’s still in good condition, with no bobbles or shrinking. It wicked away sweat well and kept my horse cool, but loose hair tended to stick to it, so it needed lots of washing.”
Schockemöhle Sports Dynamite saddle pad
Cotton outer with a quick-dry inner.
Brown, black, navy, grey, stone or white
Full in dressage or jump
The verdict: “Good cushioning, but quite hot, so best for cooler days.”
“The padding is quite thick, so offered good cushioning under the saddle, but my horse was quite hot and sweaty on warmer days. It dried very quickly, but after a lot of washes it now doesn’t sit as flat to his sides. The hair didn’t stick and the colour hasn’t faded at all.”
MicroPerformance+ saddle pad
Anatomically shaped with mesh for sweat absorption and breathability.
Black, white or navy blue
Full or cob
The verdict: “Smart and hardwearing, good for horses with low withers.”
“It was very good at wicking away moisture and keeping him cool, washed well and didn’t shrink or bobble. However, loose hair stuck to the inside and was difficult to remove. It was a better fit for my horse with low withers.”
Bucas Max pad
Layered with antibacterial fabric that helps remove sweat and moisture.
Black/silver, navy/silver or white
Full in jump or dressage
The verdict: “Smart and well-fitting for general use.”
“It’s really smart and fitted well without moving. It didn’t trap the heat, so was great for intense work. I was disappointed that the branding meant I couldn’t use it for competing at some events, so would like the option of a plain one.”
“The neoprene cushioning was thick enough that I didn’t need to use a half pad and it stayed firmly in place. It washed well without the fabric shrinking and the fur is still soft, but it was quite difficult to get all the hairs off the fabric.”
Catago Diamond saddle pad
Dirt-repellent fabric with a soft, wicking lining and Velcro straps.
Black, brown, navy, red, grey or white
Pony or full in dressage or GP
The verdict: “Quick-drying, cool and comfortable.”
“It was an excellent fit and didn’t slip, even when used for jumping. It was very breathable and quick-drying, so my horse stayed cool and comfortable under the saddle. It got a bit hairy, but washed well and still looks smart.”
Rambo saddle pad with vari-layer
Extra fill under the saddle with a high wicking inner.
White, black, navy or brown
Pony/cob or cob/horse
The verdict: “A good alternative to a half pad, but can slip.”
“It wicked away sweat well and the thicker padding in the saddle area meant I didn’t have to use a half pad as I normally would. Hair brushed off easily, it was washed well and dried surprisingly quickly. It could slip if I wasn’t careful with the placement.”
Caldene GP saddle pad
Satin fabric with wicking properties, ergonomically shaped with a reinforced girth section.
Pony, cob, full, extra-full
The verdict: “Great for high withers, with a stand-out design.”
“The fit was excellent for my very high-withered horse and it didn’t slip or move around. The material wicked away sweat well and loose hair brushed off easily. The design is quite striking, which I liked, but it may not be to everyone’s taste.”
LeMieux ProSport Suede saddle pad
High wither, elasticated D-ring tabs and girth protection, with bamboo lining.
Benetton blue, teal, navy, beige, burnt orange, green, black, berry red or grey
Small/medium or large
The verdict: “Smart, luxurious pad with a great fit.”
“It was a great fit, sat up in the gullet of the saddle and the D-ring tabs were easy to secure. The lining did a good job of wicking away sweat and I loved the luxurious feel of the tactile suede outer.”
Passier breathable saddlecloth
Quilted with an open-pore material to reduce accumulated heat and dampness.
Blue or white
Full in dressage or jump
The verdict: “Excellent wicking qualities, but tends to get hairy.”
“It didn’t move at all while riding. The material was brilliant at wicking away moisture and keeping him cool, even though it was quilted. It dried really quickly after washing, but it was difficult to get rid of all the hairs.”
Horze River all-purpose saddle pad
Contoured shape with a cotton lining and foam polyfill inner.
White or dark blue
Pony or full
The verdict: “Good spine clearance and smart-looking, but can slip.”
“It sat well on my horse’s back and stayed up in the gullet. It didn’t make him particularly hot and the hairs didn’t stick to it. There is a slight shine to the outer fabric and if I didn’t do the girth straps up tight it could slip back while I was riding.”
HKM Porto saddle pad
Shaped to protect pressure points.
White, red wine, green, deep green, baby blue, corn blue or deep blue
Pony or full in dressage or GP
The verdict: “Good value for a hard-working saddle pad.”
“It’s well-padded, but still felt lightweight and the cut sat well under my saddle. The lining was good at wicking away sweat, although my horse still sweated up a bit after faster work. Any hair brushed off really easily and it washed really well.”
WeatherBeeta Performance all-purpose pad
Mesh spine with a PVC girth patch.
Light blue or white
Pony or full
The verdict: “Good value and durable enough for everyday use.”
It was a really good fit under my GP saddle and sat well over my horse’s withers. The soft edges didn’t cause any rubs. It’s very lightweight and didn’t make him overly hot. It washed brilliantly, dried quickly and still looks really smart.
Fouganza Jump saddle pad
Honeycomb sponge padding to wick away moisture and sweat.
Burgundy, green, turquoise or blue
The verdict: “Cushioned fill with a good fit, but hair stuck to it.”
“It fitted perfectly under my 17.5in saddle and never slipped or moved while riding. However, my horse got quite sweaty and it collected a lot of hair, which was difficult to remove. It dried quickly and hasn’t bobbled or shrunk.”
Rhinegold Elite vented saddle pad
Ventilated padding with a vented spine.
Colour: Black, brown, grey, navy, red or white
Sizing: Pony, cob or full
The verdict: “A well-fitting, good-value pad for everyday use.”
“It stayed in place well and left no marks or rubs on my horse’s coat. Even after fast work he wasn’t sweaty under the pad and the Velcro girth straps made it easy to fit. Loose hair tended to stick in the material, but it washed well, with no colour run or fading.”
Horze brushing boots
Soft, thick neoprene lining with a breathable jersey outer to allow for maximum air flow
Colours White, red, purple or pink
“I really like how lightweight these boots are. They were easy to wash and dried quickly overnight. The quality of the materials is good, especially for the price. I used them mainly for schooling and some hacking. The design gave me peace of mind while I was riding, as I knew her legs were protected all the way down to the fetlock. Because of the wrap-around fit they got quite muddy on wet days.”
Veredus E-vento cross-country boots
Lightweight, protective boots with breathable, micro-perforated neoprene and mesh-ducted fabric
RRP front £110, back £120
“These boots were an excellent fit. They look fantastic, with well-designed protection in all the right places, and didn’t restrict my horse’s legs. They were a bit heavier than I was expecting for the price, but they don’t hold any water, slip or twist. The Velcro is tough, but can be a bit of a fiddle to get straight initially.”
Majyk Equipe Colour Elite Series cross-country boots
Breathable, flexible boots with foam that hardens when struck to disperse energy
Colours: Black, turquoise, orange, blue or red
RRP front £80, back £95
“These boots were true to size. I love the look of them, especially the colours. The protection from the technical materials gave me peace of mind when out jumping bigger fences. I was very impressed by the screen, which stopped dirt and grit getting through the mesh outer, even after fast work on sandy tracks. An investment, but well worth it for the competitive rider.”
BR Equestrian Pro Mesh cross-country boots
Shock-absorbing boots with a bacteria-resistant, waterproof foam lining, and two Velcro straps that can be trimmed to size
“The boots were true to size and moulded well to my horse’s legs. I found them a bit tricky to fit to start with, as the straps need to be quite tight to stop them slipping or twisting. The mesh outer is very flexible and the inside is soft, but the edging is quite stiff. I would’ve preferred the softer foam to go all the way to the edges for comfort. A flexible training boot, but would be better with softer edging.”
Horze Impact Flexi strike-guard boots
Breathable, lightweight boots with a hexagonal hole pattern to help reduce weight, and increase flexibility and airflow
“These boots were a good fit for my Thoroughbred and didn’t slip or twist. I really liked the flexibility of the tendon guard and how light the boots are. They didn’t hold water and dried out quickly. The Velcro straps are long and fiddly to do up straight, but felt very secure. Secure, lightweight protection with good, but slightly fiddly straps.”
“The front boots were true to size, but the hinds were a bit small for my sport horse’s legs. They’re very lightweight, and his legs were cool and dry after work. They washed off easily and dried quickly. They can’t be machine washed, which is a shame. I liked the tendon guard, but I would prefer a tougher strike pad.”
Kramer Michael Jung event boots
Lightweight boots with leather reinforcements, lined with shock-absorbing, waterproof foam
RRP front £44.90, back £59.90
“These boots were easy to put on with strong fastenings, and I liked the protection from the kick plates. The fronts were true to size, but the hinds were quite wide. My horse has quite fine legs and the hind boots creased above his fetlock after several uses.”
Woof Wear event boots
Breathable, neoprene boots with integrated shin and tendon protection, and padded strike areas
Sizes: S–L (front), M–XL (back)
RRP £44 per pair
“These boots were true to size and came with very useful fitting instructions. They felt sturdy and fitted my horse’s legs well, even though she’s quite fine-boned, and I felt confident that they would offer good protection. The double strap made them a bit fiddly to put on and take off quickly, and I had to adjust them a few times to make sure they didn’t slip.”
Shires Equestrian Arma cross-country boots
Contoured boots to protect tendons and ligaments, with abrasion-resistant strike pads
Sizes: Cob – extra-full
RRP front £43.50, back £41.99
“These boots were an excellent fit. The hind boots look quite long, but covered his cannon bones and tendons well without rubbing or hindering his movement. The moulding inside the boot is really soft and made them easy to fit, and there is a slot for the back of the leg that also stopped them from slipping or twisting. A little bulky, but fantastic protection and good value for money.”
WeatherBeeta cross-country boots
Lightweight and breathable, shaped to the leg with a strike pad to protect the tendons
RRP front £39.99, back £42.99
“The boots were a good fit for my chunky sport horse and stayed put through fast training work without slipping or twisting. They didn’t hold water at all and washed very well after. They’re lightweight, but are quite bulky-looking.”
FalPro Sandown lightweight turnout rug
features 1,200D, 100g turnout rug with liner loops, and an anti-static and antibacterial lining
Colours Red or black
Sizes 5ft – 7ft 3in
“I struggle to find fault with this rug. It fits my horse – a 16.3hh Hanoverian with high withers – like a glove, and despite daily use it’s held up brilliantly and hasn’t leaked or needed any repairs. The removable neck is a good fit and the rubber-covered fillet string is easy to wipe clean. The cross-surcingle belly straps do up through the inside of the rug, and kept it from sliding around, even after a good rolling session.”
Rambo Supreme Lite turnout
1,000D, breathable outer with a V-front closure, wipe-clean tail cord and three cross surcingles
Colours Black/gold or black/orange
Sizes 5ft 6in – 7ft 3in
“The rug fitted well on my TB X, as well as a cob type. It has kept him completely dry, even in prolonged, heavy rain. Despite his acrobatics in the field, it rights itself easily, and still looks smart after several washes and many months of regular use.”
Bucas Select turnout
1,200D outer, internal surcingles and front twist fastening with touch tape strap over the top
Colours Navy or ruby
Neck cover £49
“This rug was a great fit and hasn’t rubbed anywhere. The surcingles fasten at both ends to the underneath of the rug, which stops the material pulling tight, and the front overlaps so it didn’t gape, even after lots of use.”
Mark Todd lightweight turnout rug
600D, ripstop, breathable outer with buckle and clip chest fastenings
Colours Navy or black/grey plaid
Sizes 5ft 6in – 7ft
Neck cover £42.99
“This rug kept my horse dry even in torrential rain and the elastic in the surcingles gave a close, comfortable fit. The sizing was bigger than I expected, so I would recommend using the sizing chart carefully.”
Derby House Pro polka dot lightweight combo turnout
600D, ripstop, breathable outer with taped seams, full neck with buckle fastenings, and buckle and clip chest fastenings
Sizes 4ft 6in – 7ft
“This rug was true to size and didn’t slip or move about, it was very light and stayed waterproof. The clips were easy and adjustable for a good fit. I didn’t like the material very much, though, as it felt quite crinkly and noisy”
The Big Horse Shop Epic Classic turnout
1,200D outer, extra body depth and longer surcingles
Colours Navy, black or red
Sizes 5ft 3in – 7ft 6in
“The rug was an excellent fit for my bigger horse. It leaked at the tail flap at first, which I was warned could happen until the stitching swells. It didn’t leak again, though, and has performed well and dried quickly.”
Horka Print rain rug
600D, breathable outer with a cotton lining, twist fastenings and detachable elastic leg straps
Colours Blue/grey check or zebra print
“This rug was quite high at the chest and neck, so was a good fit for my fine-boned horse. It didn’t leak, but did rip a bit from games with his field mates, so I’d prefer a tougher material for the price.”
WeatherBeeta Comfitec Plus Dynamic rug
1,200D, breathable outer, clip fastenings and elastic, detachable leg straps
Sizes 4ft – 7ft 3in
“This rug was a very good fit for my horse. Usually rugs sit too low on her chest, but this is cut quite high at the neck. I also like the thick memory foam pad at the withers. It’s kept her dry and warm though heavy rain, and hasn’t ripped or torn.”
Felix Bühler Arca turnout
1,200D, tear-resistant, breathable outer with buckle and clip chest fastenings, and elastic, adjustable leg straps
Sizes 4ft 6in – 7ft
“My horse has a high wither and this rug was quite generous in size, so it fitted him well. It showed no signs of any leaks and even with a couple of little snags it hasn’t ripped. It was quick and easy to adjust, and didn’t slip.”
JHL lightweight turnout
600D, ripstop outer with a mesh lining and quick-release front fastenings
Colours Red/black or navy/burgundy
Sizes 5ft 6in – 7ft
Neck cover £28.50
“The rug fitted my horse well and had a good-sized tail flap. It didn’t rub her anywhere and the mesh lining kept the air circulating so I could put it on even if she was warm after exercise. I found the front clips a bit stiff, but it didn’t slip at all.”
Elicouture Chiltern turnout
600D, ripstop, breathable outer with a cotton lining
Two buckle chest fastenings and leg straps
Sizes 5ft – 7ft 3in
“This rug was a good fit and didn’t rub. I liked the deep body and it didn’t leak, even in heavy rain. It’s good quality, too. The bright colours and pattern really suited my horse, but it would be nice to have the option of a plain version.”
Shires Tempest Original Lite turnout
600D, waterproof, breathable, ripstop outer with taped seams.
Two twist chest fastenings Colours Petrol/turquoise or dog print
Sizes 4ft – 7ft 3in
“I was pleased with the fit on my cob – it’s deep at the chest and the adjustable chest fastenings are really helpful. The cut of the rug suited him, and it stayed put and didn’t rub. My horse lives out, so has worn it a lot and it hasn’t been damaged or leaked. It’s excellent value for money.”
Harrison Howard lightweight rug
600D, breathable, ripstop outer with a poly-cotton lining
Colours Imperial blue or aurora red
Sizes 5ft 9in – 6ft 9in
“This was a great fit – snug round the neck and fitted over the back – it has a reasonable tail flap, too. The fastenings were easy and the reflective strips are great for after dark. It hasn’t rubbed at all, didn’t leak and dried quickly after the rain.”
Masta Fieldmasta turnout rug
Features A 200g fill turnout rug with a 600D outer for the body and extra-tough 1,200D reinforced neck
“I really liked the fit of this rug, especially the dome shape of the neck, which made it very roomy and took the pressure off my horse’s mane. I also liked that the surcingles pass through the sides of the rug, so it stopped the material pulling tight around his elbows and stifles. The shoulder darts are generous, so he didn’t look restricted at all. The outer fabric is tough and has survived the games my horse plays with the youngsters in his field, and it’s very breathable – I could throw it straight on after riding.”
Bossy’s Bibs rug guard
Features A silky, protective layer that covers your horse’s body to help prevent rubs and stop the build-up of dirt
Sizes 4ft 6in – 7ft 3in
“The guard was true to size and was great under my horse’s rugs. I found it especially useful under the heavier, harder to clean rugs as it helped stop them getting too dirty inside. I washed it regularly to prevent any build up of grease and dirt, which was easy to do in a day so it was ready to go back on that night. Overall it has performed well. Sometimes it moved a bit under the rug, so it’d be more secure with a surcingle.”
Veredus TRC-Vento brushing boots
Features Lightweight boots with an anti-shock carbon strike pad, microperforated neoprene and double Velcro closures
Colours Black or brown
Sizes M or L
“I loved how lightweight these boots are, despite all the detail and extra features. The shell is really tough and covers a wide area, but is thin and doesn’t stand out from the boot at all. I liked how soft the neoprene is and, despite lots of hard, fast work, my horse’s legs didn’t sweat up. They didn’t slip, and the elastic straps are really soft and stretchy, so I never felt they restricted his legs. They washed well, dried quickly and still look fantastic.”
Back on Track 3D Mesh brushing boots with fur
Features All-purpose boots, lined with faux fur and Welltex fabric that’s infused with ceramic particles to reflect back infra-red heat
“The boots fitted my 16.2hh horse well on his back legs in a large size. The fluffy lining was really soft, but still breathable as his legs didn’t get sweaty. I used them mainly for schooling and they washed very well. I found it quite hard to keep the pressure even around his legs. They needed to be done up quite tightly to stop them slipping and, as there are only two straps, this left a slight bulge in the middle.”
WeatherBeeta exercise boots
Features Soft mesh outer with a breathable neoprene lining and synthetic strike pad
Colours Black or white
Sizes Pony, cob, full or warmblood
“These boots were an excellent fit and true to size. They were quick and simple to put on with three fastenings, and moulded nicely around my horse’s legs. I liked that the lining is a breathable neoprene, as even when he’d worked hard, there was no sweat under the boots. They have been in the washing machine plenty of times and dry quickly. Although they’re more expensive than some others on the market, I felt that the quality and detail made them good value for money.”
Shires Arma fur-lined brushing boots
Features Flexible, ergonomically shaped boots with a faux fur lining
Sizes Cob, full or extra-full
“The boots were a good fit for my 17.3hh horse. I had a full size on test and used them on his front legs. They moulded nicely around his leg and met neatly. The fastenings are very secure and easy to do up and undo, and they didn’t cause any pinching or rubs. The fur lining is very soft and they have a heavy duty strike pad, but were breathable enough to stop his legs from sweating, even with the fur. They took quite a long time to dry and after lots of washes the fur wasn’t quite as fluffy, but the stitching and the fastenings were still good as new.”
LeMieux Prosport mesh weave brushing boots
Features Lightweight boots with a synthetic strike pad, leather straps and a breathable 3D mesh outer
Colours Black, brown or white
“The boots fitted my horse well, have plenty of adjustment in the straps, and were quick to fit and take off. They moulded well around my horse’s legs and, although they were quite long, the softness of the material didn’t cause any rubs or pinch points. Despite the leather, they can be put in the washing machine, but I then had to treat the straps to make sure they stayed supple. Slightly longer than expected, and take a little bit of extra care to maintain.”
Ekkia CSO brushing boots
Features Lightweight and durable with four straps and a nylon reinforcement inside the fetlock to limit chafing
“These boots are quite long, which was good for my 17hh horse, but he also has quite chunky legs and they only just fitted round the width. They’re very lightweight and dried quickly, so I used them as a turnout boot as well as for hacking and schooling. The fastenings were secure but quite fiddly, as there are lots of straps close together, and the style of the strike pad was different to brushing boots I have used before – for fast work or jumping I would prefer a thicker pad over his fetlocks.”
Caldene Strapless brushing boots
Features Soft neoprene boots with one full-width hook-and-loop fastening
Sizes pony, cob or full
“I tested the full size on my horse’s front legs (16hh sport horse). The one strap closure meant they were really quick and easy to put on and take off. They didn’t rub at all, and I really liked the thick, solid protection over his fetlocks. As there’s only one strap, it was difficult to make them mould well to his legs as they couldn’t be adjusted differently at the top and bottom.”
Rambo Reflective Night Rider boots
Features A soft, perforated neoprene boot with a reflective polyester outer
Sizes Pony, cob, full or extra-full
“I really liked these boots. They are true to size, fitted really well and never slipped or twisted. The material is lightweight, soft and flexible, and even though my horse is usually prone to rubs, these never caused any problems. They were quick to dry, even after a really long hack through mud and water. The reflective material is very effective and looks smart. The strike pad was tough enough to protect his legs well when I was out hacking, but I’d probably want something with thicker protection for jumping.”
Woof Wear Club reflective brushing boots
Features Soft, lightweight boots with high-visibility straps
“They’re true to size, very soft and flexible, and the high quality of the materials means they last a long time. I used them for hacking and liked the extra safety of the high-vis straps. They didn’t slip or twist at all, even on fast, muddy rides. They’ve been through the washing machine many times and still look good. The strike pad isn’t very thick, so if I had a horse who brushed badly I would want something with a bit more protection.”
“The boots look smart, and are soft and flexible. I used them on long hacks and they didn’t cause any rubs on my horse’s legs. The neoprene material washed well and dried relatively quickly. The length was good, but they came up a little wider than I was expecting. I found the straps a bit fiddly, especially with cold hands, as the strap threads through the ring and fastens back on itself, but once done up they stayed firmly in place and didn’t slip. The boots were wider than I expected, and the straps were a bit fiddly.”
Fouganza soft boots
Features A resistant shell lined with shock-absorbing neoprene and fastened with a wide, elasticated, hook-and-loop closure
Colours Brown, pink, green or dark purple
Sizes Pony, cob or full
“I had these boots in cob size and they were a perfect fit for my 14.1hh pony. They were easy to take on and off, and the double locking fastenings kept them from slipping. They didn’t rub his legs, even when they were wet and muddy. I mainly used them for hacking, schooling and some jumping, as they have a thick strike pad. They washed well and the colour hasn’t faded at all, but they took quite a long time to dry.”
Equilibrium Tri-Zone brushing boots
Features Flexible, neoprene boots with a synthetic strike pad
Colours Black, brown or white
“These boots were a great fit on my horse’s front legs. I had a large size on test, which were perfect for my 16.2hh warmblood. Despite lots of use they still look good with no marks on the strike pads, so I was very pleased with the quality of the material. They washed and dried quickly, and are very lightweight, so were great for everyday use. The double lock strap system wasn’t too fiddly to use and kept the boots securely in place.”
Bridleway neoprene brushing boots
Features Soft, shock-absorbing neoprene boots with synthetic strike pads
Colours Black or white
Sizes Pony, cob, cob wide, full or extra-full
“These boots were true to size and, for the price, the quality and design is great. The neoprene is tough and flexible, but didn’t make my horse’s legs sweat. The stitching is recessed, which stopped it from being damaged or pulled. They were quick and easy to put on with two straps and, although I would prefer a third strap to give a neater fit, they didn’t slip or rub. They washed well, but took longer to dry than some of my other exercise boots. Took a while to dry, and would prefer a third strap for added protection and security”
HyImpact brushing boots
Features: Lightweight, flexible boots with a padded strike pad
Colours: White, pink, purple, navy, black or brown
“The boots fitted my 16hh horse well. I had a medium, which fitted his front legs. They didn’t slip or move at all, so didn’t leave any rubs, and the fastenings were easy to use. I liked how lightweight they are, but they made his legs sweat a bit, especially after fast work. The area protected is quite small – for hacking and general schooling they were fine, but for jumping I’d want more protection. The strike pads marked quite easily, but they protected his legs well. Made my horses legs sweat, especially after fastwork. The strikepad was quite small, so better suited to hacking and general schooling.”
Elico Langley brushing boots
Features: A neoprene boot with a contoured strike pad and double straps
Colours: Black, purple, blue, pink or orange
Sizes: Pony, cob or full
“These boots were very easy to fit and I liked that the fastenings were easy to undo. The neoprene is flexible and has a soft binding. I found the full size quite large, both around the leg and in height. They fitted my 16.2hh warmblood’s hindlegs, but he’d need a size smaller in front. I used them for hacking, lungeing and polework, and was happy with the protection they gave. They also washed and dried quickly and easily, so were great for muddy days. However, they were larger than expected!”
Showmaster splint boots
Features: Soft chloroprene rubber with added reinforcement on the strike pad
Sizes: Cob or full
“The boots were easy to fit. I had cob size on test and they fitted my 15hh horse’s front legs, but the straps were only just long enough, so for a horse with heavier legs they might be a bit snug. The elastic on the straps was a bit stiff at first, but soon softened after a couple of uses and helped mould the boots to her legs. They didn’t rub, slip or twist, even when riding through deep water, but they didn’t dry very quickly. After lots of use and many washes they still look good, and have survived being thrown around by my young horse when I wasn’t looking!”
Guardian Fence Buster 250g rug
An anti-escape turnout rug made of fabric that channels the pulse of electricity to the inside of the rug the instant any contact is made with the fence.
Sizes: 4ft 3in – 6ft 6in
“I used this rug over the winter on my escape artist horse, who has a habit of breaking through electric fencing, especially when he’s protected by a rug. He tried it once when he was wearing this rug, but that was all, so I’m happy to say that the technology worked. The rug itself was a good fit and I liked that it was deep enough to fit my warmblood. It was insulated enough to keep him warm all through the winter, but breathable so he didn’t get sweaty. It’s quite a heavy rug to lift and put on a big horse, but in general I was very happy with it.”
Elico Brighton fleece
Colours: Yellow or orange
Soft fleece with double buckle chest fastenings and a reflective horse pattern on the black binding.
“It was true to size and fitted my horse well. I loved that it’s such a soft fleece material so it didn’t rub anywhere, and it was really warm and cosy. The fastenings are good and kept the rug from slipping. It’s also washed well and the material hasn’t bobbled. For the price I think it’s a good value, good-quality fleece. I loved the bright colour as it made such a nice change from all the navy rugs my horse has, but I can see it wouldn’t be to everyone’s taste.”
Fouganza full neck drying rug
Made from material that absorbs up to four times its own weight in water. Great for using after a bath or as a refreshing towel in very hot weather.
“I was amazed at how well this rug worked at drying off my horse after a bath – it’s super-absorbent and dried him quickly. It has a good depth to the sides and the large size fitted him well – he usually takes a 6ft 9in rug. It’s quite generous around the chest, but it sat well and didn’t slip. Perhaps the addition of a surcingle strap would be useful to hold the material closer underneath and help dry the belly area, too.”
Colours: Aqua/sky blue/wool white, lila/old rose/wool white or dark magenta/navy/wool white
Sizes: 5ft 3in – 7ft 3in
Breathable micro fleece, with adjustable and removable cross surcingles and a tail strap.
“It was a good fit for my slim Thoroughbred, who struggles with fit in the shoulder and chest area. It didn’t slip back or cause any rubs, and it looked smart on. It was also a great rug for travelling, because it kept his temperature at a comfortable, regulated level and quickly absorbed any moisture away from his body. It needed regular washing, but for the price it’s a great, versatile rug.”
Horze Avalanche Pro fleece
Colours: Black or dark blue
Quick-drying, anti-pilling fleece with cross surcingles and double front closures.
“It was a good fit and true to size. It’s a lovely, thick fleece, so was great on cold days, and kept my horse warm and comfortable after exercise. The straps were secure and stopped the rug from slipping. It looked very smart, so I used it at shows as well as after exercise and for travelling on very cold days. Because it’s a thick fleece, I would only really use it in the winter.”
Felix Bühler cooler with fleece collar
Colours: Chocolate, marine, ocean blue or pearl pink
Sizes: 4ft 6in – 7ft
A soft, polyester fleece cooler with a single front closure and surcingle.
“It looked very smart on and I liked the softness of the fleece material. I used it mainly to prevent any chills after a bath or if I was caught in the rain. It didn’t slip while I had it on my horse, although I wouldn’t leave it on overnight as it only has a single surcingle strap. It came up a little short, so I would recommend a size up.”
Bridleway jersey cooler
Sizes: 5ft – 7ft 3in
A wicking, smooth, knitted outer fabric with a fleece inner surface, adjustable cross surcingles, a fillet string and a tail flap.
“It was a good fit on my horse and true to size. I really liked the jersey material as it looked smart and didn’t attract too much hay and hair, so it stayed fairly clean. The fleece inside worked well to wick away any moisture. I mainly used it after exercise on cooler days or after a bath, although it was a bit too warm to use it for travelling. I thought it was a useful, versatile rug. I liked the blue colour, but perhaps some other options would be nice as well.”
Rambo Techni waffle cooler
Sizes: 5ft 6in – 7ft 3in
White, lightweight fabric helps reflect the heat of the sun, while the waffle design helps wick moisture away quickly.
“The fit was good for my horse and it’s true to size. I liked the fastenings, as they were easy and quick to use, and seem very robust. I also liked the quality of the material, as it feels made to last. It’s not too thick, which makes it good for autumn or spring days. It’s very smart, but because it’s white, I felt it was only practical to use it after bathing or at shows.”
Derby House Pro fleece combo
Sizes: 4ft 6in – 7ft
Made from wicking material with a full neck. It features lined shoulders and a double buckle chest fastening.
“I liked the quality of the fleece – it felt thick and soft, and I was happy it would keep my horse warm on colder days. It has good, secure fastenings that kept it well and truly in place. The buckle fastenings at the front were great for my horse as he has quite broad shoulders and it was helpful to have the extra adjustability. I used it mainly after exercise or bathing on cooler days to prevent any chills. I’d prefer a bit more depth to the sides and the neck, but in general it’s a good value, versatile fleece.”
Rhinegold Celltex multi-purpose rug
Sizes: 4ft 6in – 7ft
Made from a technical, stretch acrylic fabric to help regulate temperature, it’s breathable and moisture wicking, and has a double chest strap, cross surcingles and a fillet string.
“This was a good fit for my horse, although it could be a bit short in depth for some horses. It looked really smart and I liked the colour scheme. The material is thick and good quality, so I felt it was very good value for money. I used it for travelling in the winter, and after exercising and bathing. The straps kept it secure, so I was happy to leave it on overnight as an additional layer when it was really cold. I would prefer clip fastenings at the chest than buckles, because it’s faster when changing lots of rugs, and perhaps a heavier weight webbing on the straps.”
Eskadron Pro-Cover rug
Generously cut with an integrated fleece back for maximum wicking and warmth, and removable cross surcingles.
“It fitted my horse well and I really liked the design of part mesh, part fleece to keep his back covered. I used it after exercise and it helped to dry him off quickly. I liked that the surcingles were removable, so it was easy to throw on over tack without straps hanging down. I used it for travelling on cold days and after baths. It’s quality material, too, so good value for money. I’d like the fleece material to come around the shoulder and chest area, too, to help dry this part just as quickly.”
Mark Todd deluxe half mesh cooler
Sizes: 5ft 6in – 7ft
Breathable and wicking upper, and a lower mesh section to allow the air to circulate. It has double front buckles and anti-rub shoulders.
“It was a good fit, true to size and looked very smart on my horse. I liked that it was so lightweight and the lower mesh part allowed the air to circulate well. The fastenings were good quality and had plenty of adjustment, so the rug stayed secure and didn’t slip. I used it for travelling, standing by the lorry at shows and also after bathing. It’s a good-quality rug and for the price it’s excellent value for money. I felt the fleece panel over the back didn’t wick away moisture quite as well as I would have liked, so perhaps a better wicking material would make this rug perfect.”
Premier Equine Buster Prestige fleece cooler
Sizes: 5ft 6in – 7ft
Made from 280g anti-pill polar fleece with a rolled neck, shaped seams and no back seam.
“The fit was true to size and there’s a lot of adjustment in the straps. I liked that there’s good depth to the rug and that it came with a replacement fillet string. The roll neck is a lovely feature and makes it look very cosy. The material is very good quality, it didn’t bobble after washing and still looked smart after a lot of use. I mainly used this rug for travelling, keeping warm at shows and after a bath. It’s so lovely I couldn’t bear to use it as a stable rug, although it would be good for this as the fit and straps keep it all in place well. The design took a bit of getting used to, as it isn’t as easy to put on straight without a back seam, however, the overall fit is better for it.”
Shires jersey cooler combo
Sizes: 4ft 9in – 7ft
A jersey outer and fleece inner, with an extended neck cover that sits over the poll for extra coverage and protection. Lined at the chest for comfort with one chest strap.
“I loved how warm this rug was and that it had such good coverage – there weren’t any gaps and the ear holes stopped the neck from slipping down. I used it after bathing or after exercise on cold days to stop any chills. I thought it was lovely, quality material and excellent value for the price. I found the sizing to be quite generous.”
WeatherBeeta Thermic standard neck quilt cooler
Sizes: 5ft 6in – 7ft 3in
A soft, multi-layered polyester knit outer that wicks away moisture. It has adjustable double chest closures, satin-lined shoulders, low cross surcingles and a fillet string.
“This rug feels really high quality. I love the smart quilting on it and the fit was excellent on my horse, who has quite a broad chest and is usually tricky to fit for a rug. The wither padding is a nice touch, and I found the fastenings robust and easy to use. The darting around the quarters could have had more shape to it for my taste.”
Bucas competition cooler
A lightweight cooler made from a combination of wicking fabric on the upper and fly mesh fabric on the lower part to allow air to circulate more easily.
“It was true to size and a really good fit for my horse. I especially liked the fit around his neck as it wasn’t too low. He gets hot easily, so this was a good option for him, as the mesh part meant he didn’t overheat. It has warmer, wicking material over the top, so I didn’t have to worry about him getting a chill on his back after exercising. I used it for travelling, too, especially when I was coming back from shows. A good option for most cooler days, but I would want something a bit thicker if it was really cold and windy.”
LeMieux Four Seasons rug and neck cover
Colours: Benetton blue, black, navy or burgundy
Sizes: 5ft – 6ft 9in, neck cover M–XL
Neck cover £36.95
A top layer that wicks away moisture and a warm, fleece inner lining that allows air flow.
“The fit was excellent, true to size and there was good adjustment on the straps. I loved the luxurious feel of the thick fleece – it’s really good quality and feels like it’s made to last. It hasn’t pulled or stretched out of shape at all. The detachable neck cover came quite far down over my horse’s shoulders and withers, so there weren’t any gaps, even with his head down. There is only one surcingle strap, so I didn’t feel I could use it as a stable rug.”
Sizes: 4ft 6in – 7ft 6in
The high-wicking lining and wide fleece layers help transfer moisture quickly to the outside of the rug. It has a single surcingle and front strap.
“The rug was a really good fit and I would say it’s true to size. It was easy to put on and take off as it has clip fastenings which were quick to use. I also liked that it has long sides, which kept my horse well-covered. It looked really smart, so I was happy to use it at shows. It was also brilliant to use for bathing on cooler days, as it kept my horse warm. I found the belly strap was a bit too long for my horse, even when I had it adjusted to it’s shortest length.”
Thermatex SHR rug
Colours: Available in 23 variations
Sizes: 4ft – 7ft 3in
No joining seam, so the rug moulds to your horse’s shape, and direct contact ensures efficient use of the wicking technology.
“This rug was perfect for use after exercise and worked well to cool my horse down without him getting a chill. I also used it for travelling when the weather was a bit cooler, after a bath and under a stable rug as an additional layer. It worked brilliantly to remove any moisture – I could see the beads of water on the surface of the rug as it allowed him to dry. The sizing came up quite big. I found a size smaller than I would normally buy was the best fit.”
The rug is styled in a 1,000 x 2,000 denier Textilene fabric, which is specially formulated to keep flies at bay, as well as withstand sun-bleaching, mildew, soiling and wear and tear – even in the most extreme weather conditions – while keeping your horse cool. The weave mesh blocks UV rays, dirt and grime, helping to keep your horse’s coat brighter, cleaner and drier.
“I really do love everything about this fly sheet – it’s made from a very durable tear-resistant fabric, it has a lovely padded neckline, which made it comfortable for my horse, and it kept him cool. It offers great coverage, with a belly band and detachable neck. It comes with a lifetime guarantee, so while it is at the upper end of the price range, it should be the only fly rug you’ll have to buy. I found the matching detachable neck way too big for my horse.”
Horseware Rambo Sweet Itch Vamoose
The Rambo Sweet Itch Vamoose is made from tough, 1,000 denier polyester, making it extremely strong and durable, yet fully breathable throughout the summer months. The rug has a silky mane, tail and shoulder lining to minimise rubbing. Extra-deep sides and leg arches allow the rug to wrap around for added coverage.
“This fly sheet is made from a very tough and strong material, making this one of the most durable fly sheets on the market. Even though the material is thick, it kept my horse very cool and allowed his skin to breathe. It’s aimed at horses who suffer from sweet itch and insect bites, and I found that the Vamoose insect control technology really did help to keep all flies and insects away from my horse who suffers with mild sweet itch. It comes with a free fly mask and is very easy to fit, and it fits a variety of horses well. It’s quite expensive and you can’t wash the rug without washing out the Vamoose technology.”
Shires Sweet Itch Combo fly rug | Horse&Rider Best Value 2014
This fixed neck rug is made from soft polyester mesh. It features shoulder gussets, surcingles, an anti-rub satin chest lining, a tail flap and twin front-fastening straps with a fixed neck to ensure your horse is fly-free.
“I like the fact that this fly sheet has an integrated neck. It did keep my horse cool even in the heat, and I really like how it feels and looks. This fly sheet is made from a soft polyester mesh, maybe a little too soft, as the rug slipped around on my horse and wasn’t very secure.”
Equi-Thème Fly Protector Mesh Summer Sheet
This summer sheet is made from a mesh especially designed to prevent small insects from getting through, while preserving breathable and drying properties. It features elasticated low cross-surcingles, shoulder gussets, adjustable and removable nylon leg straps with snap hooks, tail cord and twin chest straps with buckles.
“This rug is very durable. I like the colour and style of this rug. The material is a very durable fine mesh. It fitted very well and there was plenty of scope to extend straps. It washed up like new and didn’t get too snagged up by the Velcro straps like a lot of other fly sheets.”