How to Care For a Viking Drinking Horn


When you want an ancient experience while sipping on some ale, a drinking horn will be an ideal vessel. It takes you back to the historical ages, and have a feeling of how they enjoyed their drinks.

Although they are not popular in many households, they are perfect to have around. It feels even better when you are using some with friends.

The horns must be well taken care of, to prevent degradation and damage. This is, especially for authentic drinking horns that are derived from animals.

What to Avoid

For your horns, there are several general things to avoid for proper maintenance. For example, when it comes to cleaning, avoid putting it in a dishwasher. It could be damaged.

While still in cleaning, do not use harsh detergents, solvents, or chemicals. These always harm them.

On the other hand, sharp objects should not be used in cleaning. The reason is besides cracking them, the process may also damage the surface.


Keep Them Away From Extreme Temperatures

Authentic drinking horns come from animals. Extreme temperatures such as microwaving them harm the quality.

If they are not kept away from extreme temperatures and acidic substances, your drinks will have an off-flavor.

It is also advisable to keep them from harsh chemicals. You do not want your horns to degrade for something you could have prevented.

Cleaning the Horns

Since harsh objects and detergents should not be used, get used to hand-washing them. Get a horn-friendly detergent, a soft cloth, and a towel to dry it. It is important that you get rid of the moisture as soon as possible.


If it is coated and sealed, it should be cleaned with warm water immediately after use. If this is not done, the protective sealing could be damaged.

Remains of a drink in a horn could lead to irreversible damage that is one reason immediate cleaning is necessary.

Get into a routine, and cleaning it will not be a challenge.

Ensure Regular Coating

Coating the drinking horn from time to time should be part of maintaining it. It goes for the all-natural ones.

There are four methods of doing it. You can opt for hard or beer liquor sealing, or beeswax. These are easy to do.

The latter is popular and simple, as all you need to do is melt the beeswax. Pour it into the horn, let it sit until it dries out.


Once this is done, clean it with warm water and dry it.

Alternatively, you can choose the salad bowl finish or even food-grade epoxy. Each has its pros and cons.

Read the Instructions

There are several places to buy prepared drinking horns which include online websites such as or in specialty stores and at various markets.

Manufacturers of prepared hors normally provide specific instructions on how to care for their drinking horns. Read their description and utilise these other tips to best care for yours.

Care instructions include where to keep it, what to pour in it, and what not to. It also includes how and when to wash it as well as how to reseal it.

This information is crucial and should be followed. When the manufacturer gives the instructions, they know what is required based on their manufacturing processes used.

It is a product they have created, understand what is used, and how they have prepared it. Thus, follow the instructions religiously.


Restoring the Luster

You do not want to drink from a vessel that is not appealing. There is a feeling that you get when taking your favorite drink from a drinking horn.

If it is not appealing, you will not be comfortable drinking from it. Restoring its luster is not as hard as it may seem.

Once cleaned with warm water and a soft cloth, proceed to polish it for a perfect shine. Vegetable oil or any oil that is safe for eating is excellent in preventing dry out.

Use a soft cloth to wipe over it, and make sure you follow the grain’s direction. The oil gets deep into the grains and prevents excessive drying and cracking.

To maintain the beauty of the horn, use a soft, lint-free cloth.

When You Buy a Raw Drinking Horn


If you opt to buy a raw drinking horn rather than a finished one, there is some work that you need to do. It will need some cleaning and curing.

Curing it is easy. Mix dish soap with warm water and soak it for about two hours. Use a soft cloth to clean and dry it well.

Due to the nature of animal horns, you may notice there is an unpleasant odor. It can be uncomfortable when you are drinking from it, although it’s an experience that should take you centuries back.

A great way to do it is to mix pharmaceutical alcohol with water in equal parts and soaking it for at least 24 hours.

Once the time has elapsed, rinse it with clean water and remove the moisture immediately.

Keep In a Safe Place

When not in use, the horn should be stored safely. The environment should neither be too hot nor too cold.

Besides, the environment, it should have a stand where it rests safely. When placed on a horizontal surface, anything could happen. It can fall and crack.

Horn stands are made of metal or wood among other materials.

Take Away


It might sound as if proper maintenance of a drinking horn could be a challenge. This is not the case, once you get into the routine, it will be easy to do it.

Keeping them from extreme temperatures, not using harsh detergents on them, and removing moisture immediately is part of it. It goes a long way in ensuring the horn is in good shape.

Besides, sealing it from time to time should not be ignored. It helps in getting rid of the natural smell that comes with it. If you notice that it is degrading, seal and polish it.

Get to understand the user’s manual from the manufacturer. For the warranty period, you must at least follow these instructions.

By doing this, your drinking horn will be around for a long time to come.