Yoga mats are an essential part of your yoga practice like your yoga partner. They provide a firm surface for your body to rest on while you practice poses. However, if you use your yoga mat often, it can quickly become dirty. It’s where you balance, bend, and sweat. This means it can also get covered in dirt, oil, sweat, and even collect dust during storage. And over time, you can expect it to smell.
When you go to a yoga class or practice at yoga studio, you feel a better mood when you practice yoga on a clean mat and practice yoga more easily.
In this article, we show you the best way to clean and disinfect your mat so that it is safe for use again.
The Best Way To Clean and Disinfect Your Yoga Mat
If you want to keep your yoga mat looking new, you should always wash it with microfiber cloth, disinfectant wipes, warm water and minimal soap. This will help remove any dirt or germs that may have accumulated on the surface of the mat. After washing, let the mat air dry completely before storing it away.
Here are some simple steps to follow to ensure your yoga mat stays clean and fresh.
Clean Your Yoga Mat Regularly
As much as possible, clean your mat at least once a week. It may not necessarily be right after you use it but schedule it within the week. It’s not only a good practice but it also helps extend the life of your yoga mat.
Use Natural Cleaning Solutions
When cleaning your mat, use cleaners that are water-based, organic, and all-purpose. Stay away from harsh cleaners as these contain chemicals that can damage your mat and even be harmful to your health. You can mix a solution of ½ cup white vinegar and ½ cup water along with a few drops of essential oils like tea tree oil. Put the solution in a spray bottle for easy use. The vinegar and clean water solution serves as a natural disinfectant that will clean your mat and not irritate your skin.
Minimize The Use Of Soap
The vinegar and water solution is already good enough for cleaning your mat. But if you want deep cleaning, you can immerse your mat in a small amount of water for only a few minutes and use only a very small amount of soap. You can also opt to skip the soap and just add a few splashes of vinegar to the water. Just make sure that you only immerse the mat for a minute or two as taking longer can soak the mat and you wouldn’t want that.
There are those that say it’s okay to throw your mat in the washing machine while there are also those that say don’t as it may not be able to withstand the machine’s movements. It would be best to check with the mat’s manufacturer but in the end, the decision will be up to you.
Once you’re done cleaning your mat, allow it to air dry. Don’t let it bathe in the sun as this can dry out your mat and lead to crumbling and cracking. Expect that the mat will take several hours before it will be completely dry. This usually depends on how thick your yoga mat is. So just let it hang and it will be dry in no time.
If you want a quick solution, you can just invest in mat wipes and use these to clean your mat. They come in singular packages and have essential oils that are safe to be used on mats. They are also available in sprays if you feel like spritzing instead of wiping.
Whether you choose to clean your mat using a natural solution or using mat wipes, the important thing is that you’re cleaning your mat. So go ahead and sweat it out but make sure that you give your yoga mat the cleaning that it deserves.
Yoga Mat Cleaning FAQ’s
Can I wash a yoga mat in a washing machine?
Yes, you can wash a yoga mat in the washing machine. Most of the yoga mats are machine washable. However, you should use cold water and detergent. If you do not follow these instructions, you may damage the fabric of the mat. Also, avoid putting any other items into the washer while doing so.
Can using a yoga towel help me avoid cleaning my yoga mat?
It’s smart to have a yoga mat towel because it helps keep your mat clean and dry even during your challenging yoga practice when you sweat a lot. And since it lies right above your mat, it absorbs much moisture and sweat which means less need to clean your mat after every session. Additionally, it is especially useful when doing a hot yoga class where you tend to get sweaty quickly.
How to Deep Clean a Yoga Mat?
To deep clean a yoga mat, first, remove all the dirt from the surface using a vacuum cleaner or a damp cloth. Then, use a dry cloth to wipe away any remaining moisture. Then, apply a small amount of baby oil to the mat and let it sit for about 30 minutes. The oil will help loosen up the dirt and grime. Finally, apply a small amount of rubbing alcohol to the mat and rub it in with a soft brush.
There are different types of yoga mats. Some are closed-cell mats, which are usually thinner and water resistant. This means liquids aren’t soaked in as quickly. Others are open-cell mats, which allow for air circulation and help prevent sweat from building up.
Is Clorox wipes safe to use for a yoga mat?
Yes, Clorox wipes are safe to use for a mat. However, you should always wash your hands after using them. If you do not wash your hands, then you may contaminate your mat. You should only use Clorox wipes once per week. Afterward, rinse off the wipes thoroughly and leave them outside until they are fully dry.
What kind of soap works well for a yoga mat? Is dishwashing liquid ok?
You can use regular bar soap for a yoga mat. But remember that some types of soap contain chemicals that could harm your skin. Therefore, it is better to opt for an unscented type of mild soap. Dishwashing liquids work fine too.
In conclusion, there are many ways to clean a yoga mat. Some people prefer to buy new ones whereas others prefer to clean their old ones. Whatever method you decide to adopt, just ensure that you clean your mat regularly. It would prevent mold growth and reduce the chances of getting bacteria. Consider using a DIY yoga mat cleaner after each practice, or a store-bought cleaner like Manduka’s Mat Renew.