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I installed a rocking horse for our kids. (saved from a neighbour's trash).

The black rubber saddle on it looks weathered as can be seen in the photos below.

I am looking for a way to make it look better (cleaning it didn't help, it's in the rubber). Obviously I can't use paint that can stain clothes or skin since children will sit on it.

Any ideas? I was thinking whether there is any kind of paint that gets absorbed by the rubber and can't go out (?). Or some special rubber treatment oil? Googling around myself didn't help me.

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I have paint pens that I mark rubber scuba gear with, they would make it look better in the color of your choice, I would be cautious about using automotive rubber renewal products like tire black and armor all , they make a nice color but the coating makes the surface way two slick I did this on my professional grade swing set seats and my grandkids hated it only took 1 weekend to sand them rough and paint and the kids were much happier.

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  • Thanks for your answer. So the painting on the swing you also did with those scuba markers? I found I can purchase "Dykem Markers". So you suggest I go over the entire surface with the marker? That won't stain if you touch it? – Hacktisch Apr 16 at 7:59
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    The paint sticks really well to the rubber. It has not come off and has held up quite well. My daughter mentioned the rubber used to leave black marks on our grandchild’s clothes and after painting no black so make sure to do the edges. – Ed Beal Apr 16 at 13:19
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Did you try using some Armor All or other silicone based treatment, typically sold to dress up tires and car dashboards? It will eventually rub off, but the silicone is relatively inert and harmless. There is a petroleum based vehicle suspension with it to make it spray-able that will evaporate relatively fast, so just keep the kids off of it for an hour or so. You will also have to re-apply it periodically.

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