Horse girls - gotta love us, right? We will spend thousands (heck, that's likely an understatement!) on tack for our horses. On shoes for our horses. On saddle pads. On bridles. On vet bills. On farrier bills. But when it comes to ourselves ... we will wait for our roots to grow so long we have two different colors of hair. We will wear our socks until we have holes in them, our nails until they are chipped to oblivion, our shoes until, well ... never mind.
I am here to tell you girlfriend, you need to watch out for your riding tights. They not only can affect your self esteem in the saddle, but they can also affect your riding (ie: starting to feel a little slip and slide? Your silicone grips are probably worn off from too much wear). I am here to tell you, you are NOT the only one! I am notorious for wearing my riding clothes (okay, all of my clothes...) wayyyy past their prime! Here are some of my personal experiences that have shown me when it is time to upgrade my riding tights ...
Okay, way to state the obvious. Yeah, I said it, HOLES. I was riding at a show once taking a lesson the day before I showed, and I was wearing a pair of 5 year old tights. Well, the crotch split right out, and one of my fellow friend trainers laughed and yelled "LOOK IT'S THE SPEARMINT RHINO OVER HERE!!!' For those who aren't familiar, The Spearmint Rhino is a Gentlemen's Club in Santa Barbara. I rest my case. If you see ANY holes in your tights, get a new pair. Holes lead to more holes, which leads to you being the lead dancer at your local horse show. Ok, stop laughing. It wasn't funny.
2. The Silicone Grips Peel
If you see your grips peeling, or showing obvious signs of wear, it is time to get a new pair. The more you wear them, well ... the more you WEAR them! The last thing you want is to be in a moment where you need extra grip and find that you have extra SLIP.
Ahhh, sun. Love it, hate it. But when you ride horses in the summer months, or especially if you train horses in the summer months ... you can't hide from this. Riding horse after horse in the bright sun means fading WILL happen, and a little fading doesn’t mean you need to toss your favorite riding tights … but once your black tights turn grey, well... you get my drift.
4. Stretched Out or Shrunk
Another thing that can just happen with wear. An accident that has happened to the best of us: You're in a hurry, you don't follow the washing instructions that came with your riding tights. So, you wash your tights on hot, and you throw them in the dryer. If it’s a daily struggle that almost requires two people to get them on, then the pants are much too small. The same can be said for them stretching out over time.
Reminder: ALWAYS wash your tights COLD and inside out. Always hang to dry. If you don't follow our washing instructions, I promise you won't get the longevity out of the tights you bought.
Horses and Life happens. We work around it. We often ignore it. Stains are a part of owning horses, having children, just plain living, or all of the above. BUT if your breeches could be mistaken for you trying an at home tye-dye project, girl spend the $90 and get a new pair. That's not even half your farrier bill. Trust me, I KNOW.
There's nothing harder than saying out with the old and in with the new. As a horsewoman, I know some of our riding clothes also hold sentimental value. But if there's one thing I also know - an upgrade can make you feel AMAZING and brand new. So girl, take a tip from how you treat your horse. And TREAT YO SELF!!!