Started to remove some coving border under the main coving. Seems to have this yellow fibre mixed in with what I think is plaster.

Anyone know what it is? Is it safe to remove? Worried it could be something linked to asbestos. House was built in early 70s (UK). Did think it could be horse hair, but seems too yellow.

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  • 3
    That's fiber they mix in with the plaster, usually some sort of animal hair. Asbestos fibers are much smaller and look more "frizzy". Sep 30, 2019 at 20:09
  • 2
    Answers go down there, @PhilippNagel.
    – isherwood
    Sep 30, 2019 at 20:12
  • Yes Phillip , commonly called horse hair put it down in the answer box.
    – Ed Beal
    Sep 30, 2019 at 21:32
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    Horsehair is typically used in veneer plaster. This looks more like jute or hemp, which was used back in the day for making rope before the synthetics came along. It is still is used for rope making, just not as popular as it used to be.
    – Jack
    Oct 1, 2019 at 0:42

1 Answer 1


If it's traditional plaster, it's horse hair. When horses were common transport, horsehair was cheap. Like dogs, horses shed each year. Stuff was used for cushions too. More recently they are more likely to use fiberglass, or some form of plastic fiber.

Plant fibers could also be used. Jute, sisal, flax (linen).

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