Striphair vs SleekEZ: The Battle of the Shedding Tools

I have a weird confession to make: I really really really like grooming a hairy horse during shedding season. I don’t know why, but there’s something extra satisfying about losing yourself in the simplicity of it, and seeing that big billowing pile of hair on the floor when you’re done. It’s satisfying work, with easily-seen results. I love body clipping for the same reasons. Okay, maybe I’m just really into hair removal. Either way, Henry doesn’t get a full body clip – lower maintenance when it comes to blanketing – so right now his super fuzzy back half (or as I like to call it, The Mullet) is in serious shed mode. I already own a SleekEZ, and someone else at the barn has a StripHair, so I decided it was time for a Shedder Showdown.

cue dramatic, suspenseful music

Before we start, I should say that StripHair has recently come out with a newer model of their tool, one that is more ergonomic and a bit… fancier looking (if it’s possible for a chunk of rubber to look fancier). From what I’ve seen of it, the material is the same, so I’m betting the performance is similar, but just a heads-up on that – to be totally fair, I tested their older model.

Neither of these tools is particularly ground-breaking as far as materials or design. The SleekEz is like a dulled mini saw blade set into a carved wooden block. The StripHair looks like a chunk of 1″ stall mat, it’s literally just a rectangle of rubber. But hey, simple tools often get the job done well. I have the large SleekEZ, which retails at $18.50. The StripHair retails at $39.00. So, how do they work?

Side 1: the SleekEZ’s bounty, after 10 strokes

I’ve been using both of them together, for the sake of comparison, for two weeks now. For “control” purposes I’ve also used a currycomb, a grooming stone, a Shed Flower, and the most basic of tools – my hands. When it comes to just the sheer amount of hair that each tool is able to remove, the SleekEZ is the winner. I can definitely get more hair off with it than with anything else. I also like that it sort of has a combing action to the coat, which helps it lift some of the dirt and dander to the surface. There’s definitely some cleaning action to it. The little teeth of the shedding blade itself seem to be good at getting down into the coat and picking up the hair from down there, too, not just the top layer.

Side 2: the StripHair’s bounty, after 10 strokes.

The StripHair mostly just seems to gather that top-most layer of loose hair, which makes sense given the design. The rubber grips the loose hairs and pulls them away. If your horse has already fully blown it’s coat, then it’s great, but if it’s still in the process, the StripHair isn’t really going to get down in there and expedite things. I DO think that when it comes to legs or delicate areas, the Strip Hair is more useful. It bends and flexes around the contours pretty well, and obviously it’s a softer material.

pretty good on the legs

That said, I think that I can get just as much hair off the legs simply by using my hands as I do from using the StripHair. Maybe even more. Those big long double jointed fingers of mine are finally useful for something.

If you really want a complete shedding arsenal, both tools are useful in their own way. But when it comes to sheer performance, the SleekEZ is the winner, hands down. If you have an extremely delicate flower of a horse then maaaaybe the StripHair could edge it’s way to the forefront, but honestly Henry is one of the most delicate flowers I know and he has no objections to the SleekEZ. You can’t really beat the bang for your buck, either… at less than half the price it outperforms the basic shedding capabilities of the StripHair, for sure. My favorite combination is currycomb + SleekEz.

all in a days work

As for the other grooming tools, get outta here with those Shed Flowers and grooming stones. Garbage. Yeah I said it. GARBAGE. Well, ok, Sadie really loves the Shed Flower to scratch her perpetually itchy elephant stomach. Other than that, though…

35 thoughts on “Striphair vs SleekEZ: The Battle of the Shedding Tools

  1. I keep thinking I’ll bring my furminator to the barn. It’s useless on huskies because it trashes the guard hairs… But I care less with the horses… It’s basically a sturdier sleek ez. Otherwise I always just full body clip and curry, curry, curry. Then sneeze. Repeat.

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    1. I have a Furminator too, which works on the GSD mix but not on the corgi. We rarely use it. Granted, it’s so tiny I don’t think I’d want to use it on the horse… I like the 10″ SleekEZ blade. Big sheets of hair are really fun, if you’re a weirdo like me.

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  2. I love my SleekEZ. This will be my second Spring with it, and I am (ridiculously) happy to have it. I will say, it needs to be cleaned fairly regularly. If it gets a build up of dirty and “winter grime” on my teeth, it definitely gets less effective, but I am sure the same would probably happy to the StripHair’s rubber surface.

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    1. Yep, they both require cleaning! I spray them down and wipe them off every couple days. As for cleanliness during grooming itself, I think the hair falls out of the SleekEz’s blades, as you’re grooming, a little bit better than the StripHair. A lot of times after a few strokes there’s just a bunch of hair stuck on the StripHair and you have to stop to remove it before continuing. Sometimes that happens with the SleekEZ, too, but less often.

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  3. I almost got a SleekEZ but instead I opted for some HandsOn grooming gloves and am IN LOVE. So are the horses. Hands conform to the various contours easier than any tool I’ve ever had. We’ll see how they hold up, but so far so good.

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    1. Neither of my horses liked the HandsOn gloves! Henry HATED them. HATED. Like wanted to take my head off level of hatred. Presto just kind of stands there like he’s annoyed. His mother LOVED them, so I just left them with Michelle to use on the mares.

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  4. I have a SleekEz, but I really prefer using the “Hands-on” grooming gloves. My hands don’t get cramped from having to grip anything and it’s easier to get all body parts with the right amount of pressure.

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  5. I absolutely despise shedding, so for the last few years I just body clip and therefore have avoided getting a tool like these. However, I don’t think I’m getting around to body clipping Wonder this year… so maybe this will finally be the time I get something to help shed the yak out faster.

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  6. I’ve been tempted to get a SleekEz – but I’m worried my horse won’t like it. He’s a delicate flower like Henry. He does not like the HandsOn gloves – I wish they made a version with softer nubbies for the super sensitive horses. I can use the gloves on his legs, but he flinches away from them on his back and sides. We use a soft Oster curry most of the time. He’s so hairy – thinking I should body clip him!

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    1. If it helps, Henry totally hated the HandsOn gloves too, and he doesn’t mind the SleekEZ. I just run it across him with light pressure and it does the job without making him mad.

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  7. I’m a professional groomer (pet, not horse!) so hair removal and deshedding tools are my life! This year I splurged on a Striphair and I was seriously underwhelmed. Truby likes it on her face…and that’s about all I can say about it. Still getting the best results with a good ol’ curry comb followed by a grooming stone. LOVE my grooming stones.
    Also, it’s WAY easier to shed out a horse that lives in Arizona than one that grows a yak coat from living in PA/MD. It’s like cheating at shedding season, and I’m ok with that!

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    1. Someone should tell my horse that he lives in Texas, not Canada, because he grows more coat than just about any horse I’ve ever seen, much less a southern bred-and-raised thoroughbred!

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  8. I definitely need to get a SleekEZ for my Maine moose, errr horses, who are shedding like mad. I agree the Shed Flower is crap for shedding season but I have a mare who loves it for regular grooming all the other seasons.

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  9. Well this is timely! I just clicked purchase on an order with a SleekEZ in it, and then your post popped up in my reader! It’s shedding season full-on here and my arm was dying yesterday trying to get as much hair off as possible with a curry. Excited to try the SleekEZ!

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  10. Do you wanna come shed out my herd? Lol. I’ve had the SleezEZ for a few years now and loooooove it. I tried a barnmate’s StripHair last spring and was…. underwhelmed. But I do have some spare chunks of rubber lying around if I wanna try again, haha.

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  11. This is great! I’ve been wondering about these tools and if they work. Duke has a trace clip and he’s hanging onto his long hair more than I’d like at this point. Might have to pick up the SleekEZ!
    P.S. I, too, really enjoy grooming shedding horses and I some days I just like to see how much hair I can pile up on the ground.

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  12. Whisper is very delicately skinned and she ADORES the SleekEZ. It is Amber’s favorite tool, too. I spent a while grooming her with it yesterday and it’ll be my second season using it and we all love it so it’s staying forever lol. I found it so funny you posted this – I was planning on giving the SleekEZ a review here soon myself! There is definitely something very rewarding about the crapton of hair that comes off.

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  13. I’ve always used the metal shedding blades. Favorite around here is one that I cannot for the life of me find online this morning, but instead of being the round metal curry on a stick, it’s kind of a triangular metal curry on a stick? (lol) Works so much better than the round one for getting into nooks and crannies.

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  14. I love my SleekEZ. I’ve had it for 2 or 3 years now and both of my horses love it. I especially love it on my pony who has shag carpeting for hair. It helps bring the dirt to the top of her coat when just brushing ends up being pretty useless. I have the smaller SleekEZ which I like for both of mine, but especially the pony.

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  15. Guess I’m the only one that did not like the SleekEZ at all. 🙂 It just chopped off the top of the guard hairs and stripped the shine off the hair that was left, and imo did more harm than good. My current horse likes the hand-curry and the one with deeper reach, although he is a flinch-er with any hard rub. But I’ll do a full or partial clip this week or next – if we stop having cold spells, that is! 🙂

    But at least we aren’t having winter storms like they are having in Washington D.C. right now, where I used to live. 🙂

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  16. Hey, thanks for this! I was wondering about the rubber one, but love my sleek ez. I just bought some other brand that looks to be the same thing though because it was on sale and came in green… Happy to hear I don’t need one of these too.
    My go-to de-shedding combo is a round of sleek ez followed by a good rubbing with the hands-on gloves. almost never use a regular curry anymore. The gloves are great for legs too.
    I also start out with a healthy spray of Mirco-tek because omg the static up here in the winter! I leave looking like chewbacca otherwise. It smells nice too, so there’s that.

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    1. I use the Epona conditioning spray for the same reasons! I just love the smell of the whole Epona line, I’ve strongly considered bringing it home for myself. LOL. Micro-tek is good too though.

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  17. I prefer to just shave all their hair off so I don’t have to deal with shedding. I will throw out there that you can buy a pack of 5 saw blades for <$10 and they work great, but are like 1/10th the cost of a sleek ez. (I have a sleek ez and when it finally got old and dull I replaced it with bulk saw blades.) No hairs were destroyed by the saw blade either.

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  18. My precious, can’t be ridden with a leather girth or lunged in a leather halter lest his precious skin gets rubbed LOVES his Metal saw blade shedder. Totally wimpy horse approved SleekEZ

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