For a properly fitted bridle, a caveson noseband should sit just below the horse’s cheekbones – generally no more than the width of 2 fingers from the bottom of the cheekbone to the top of the noseband (this does not apply to drop or figure 8 nosebands). Figure 8 nosebands should sit above the bottom of the cheek bone only if they have a ring that allows movement connecting the noseband to the cheek piece. The browband should never be gaping or flopping.

Properly adjusted cheek pieces will cause the bit to create two gentle wrinkles at the corner of the mouth on each side. Cheek piece buckles should generally be at the level of a horse’s eye, and on a bridle that fits a horse’s head very well, all buckles will generally be at the same level as each other. These cheek piece guidelines are just a suggestion, as finding a perfect fit on all horses is near impossible. Multiple holes are given on cheek pieces to allow for vast adjustment. Keep in mind that the proper position of the bit is a priority over buckle placement.

When shopping for bridles, it is important to know that German and French brands tend to run a bit larger when it comes to standard sizing. The difference is not a whole size up, but if you have a horse that fits on the smaller end of a full size, you may be able to move down to a cob size, or if your horse is wavering between full and oversized, you can most likely stick with a full size if switching to a German or French made bridle. Some horses can be difficult to fit in a stock size bridle. For this reason, additional bridle pieces can be bought in a variety of sizes and it is never a problem to mix and match sizes of individual pieces to get the proper fit.