When it comes to enjoying your yoga practice, the type of yoga mats you choose is a key factor. There are many factors in a yoga mat that will determine how happy you will be when practicing, ranging from the type of material it is made of, how supportive it is, how smelly, grippy, and solid the mat is. All these factors accumulate together to determine how easy you will be able to move, how many props you will need, and how stable you feel in challenging poses.
Since there is no fit-all yoga mat on the market, sometimes, it may require several experimenting to get the perfect mat that fits one’s style. Every individual mat is different just as we all have varying taste and style. However, if you take yoga and wellness seriously, you will want to buy a mat that will perfectly cater to your needs.
In the course of researching the market for a good yoga mat, you will obviously see there is massive variety out there – from cheap plastic mats to high-quality ones that are made almost entirely from natural materials. Yoga mats have had several evolutions in the last decade, therefore, if you are a big fan of yoga, take advantage of it and get for yourself a good mat that feels good under your body.
Here, in the course of searching for the best yoga mats available on the market, several qualities were put into consideration, including material, price, size, mat type, odor, color options, thickness, weight, and warranty to come up with best available mats you can go for. At the bottom section is also included a buying guide at the bottom section of this review to help you decide, in case you are not sure how to decide based on the qualities we have listed here.
BEST YOGA MATS
Just as it will be difficult to include every yoga mats on this list, we have, however, included the best 5 we have done extensive research on. Check out the best 5 yoga mats available for you.
|Mat Name||Sizes||Thickness||Weight||Mat type||Price|
|Manduka PROLite||Standard: 71×24”
|4.7 mm||Standard: 4lbs
Long: 4.5 lbs.
|Aurorae Classic Thick||72×24”||6.35 mm||3.2 lbs.||Open cell|
|Jade Harmony Professional||Option1: 68×24”
Option 2: 74×24”
|4.7 mm||4.4 lbs.||Open cell|
|Gaiaim Print Premium||68×24”||5 mm||3.2 lbs.||Open cell|
|Yoga Design Lab||70×24”||3.5 mm||4.1 lbs.||Open cell|
1. Manduka PROLite – this is considered as the 2018 Best Yoga Mat
Over the years, students and teachers alike have been basking in the benefits of the Manduka mats. The PROLite, though moderate in size, it is pleasurably dense and offers superior comfort and padding. It is firm, solid, extremely resilient and supportive. Many users found this mat so supportive that they hardly need additional padding for their elbows and knees.
The mat comes with a lifetime guarantee as it is made from high-quality materials that neither fade, peel, or flake. Its ultra-high-density foam made it easier for the mat to absorb impact with it 4.7mm thickness. This mat is perfect for you if you engage in more physically demanding yoga where more movement is required unlike when practicing the slower, more flowing type of yoga. If you do find standard mats too short because of your height, this mat is a perfect choice for you.
The Manduka PROLite mat is made of PVC using a manufacturing process that renders the mat non-toxic and emissions-free. The mat is also latex free, so even if you are allergic to latex, you can still use the mat without any problem.
Size and weight
The Manduka PROLite comes in two basic sizes; the standard 71×24” and the other which is a bit longer to accommodate people with higher height. The mat is relatively lighter and thus makes carrying very easy in case you consider taking it around too often.
With lots of mats on the market today, there are also lots of reviews about many of them having bad smells, but the Manduka PROLite is not part of such mats. Does that mean the mat is odorless? No. it only means it does not have an odor, it may be light and likely do not last long.
The PROLite do come in a variety of colors, including coming as ones that are opalescent. You have up to 17 options to choose from if you are going for the standard while you have 2 options with the long mat.
About Manduka PROLite Mat
The company, Manduka was founded by Peter Sterios in 1997, an architect who because of his intense passion for yoga turned yogi. In order to show his gratitude to his teachers he loved and admired, he designed the Black Mat and presented to them as gifts. The teachers passed the mat along to their own students, and alas, a company was born.
The name of the company, Manduka was derived as an inspiration from one of the poses his teacher like to include in their routine practice, the frog pose known as the Mandukasana. One of the greatest commitment of Manduka is putting the customer and environment above any other thing else and strife to the point of sustainability.
2.Aurorae Classic Thick – this is the most reviews yoga mat
For several reasons, the Aurorae Classic is considered as the best yoga mat at its price range. It is made from Environmental Resin and has no phthalates, silicone, latex, or rubber. It releases a minimal odor and its 72 inches long size has made it a perfect fit for most yogis. This mat also comes with a rosin bag which most yogis can apply to reduce slippage.
The Aurorae Classic Thick is an open cell mat that is made with a new eco-friendly biodegradable, hypoallergenic resin, that doesn’t give off chemicals. This means this mat does not emit any toxic chemicals or gases. It is also rubber-, latex-, and silicone-free making it perfect even for latex-allergic people.
Size and weight
This Aurorae mat comes in one size, that is 72×24” and it is 6.35 mm in thickness. The size of this mat is comparably thicker than many other mats on the market. However, it could be surprising that the shipping weight of this yoga mat is only 3.2 pounds and thus makes it one of the lightest mats you will ever come across on the market.
This mat is made practically from a resin material, and thus, does not emit any odor. This mat doesn’t absorb odor either and this has become a big plus for anyone who does sweat profusely during their practices.
The mat comes in a variety of colors to choose from; up to 12 color options and each of them has the Aurorae’s classic f-point moon icon to keep you focused during practice.
Aurorae is a business founded and run by a family of a Dennis Ingui, a yoga student and cancer survivor. Dennis, being a dedicated yoga student also understands how important a regular, everyday student needs yoga to enrich his or her life. The priority of this company is to ensure they provide the best customer satisfaction that cannot be rivaled by any other.
This is the most popular of the variety of yoga mat made by Jade. Due to its open cell feature, it is able to absorb sweat as well prevents slip as much as possible than what other mats will do. The feel of the mat is what everyone will love even with the fact that it comes with a thinner padding. It has this kind of interesting grip and also feels extraordinarily nice under the feet while in practice. The Jade Harmony Professional is very easy to carry around as it is lightweight and at the same time, it is eco-friendly.
The Jade Harmony is an open cell yoga mat made with natural rubbers gotten from trees, which are usually biodegradable. The material from which the yoga mat was is devoid of EVA, PVC, as well as some other synthetic rubbers. Also, this mat is made the United States of America.
Size and weight
This mat often comes in two size options, including the small size around 68” in length and the larger size which is around 74” long. Both of the sizes are 24” wide and 4.7 mm in thickness. The Jade Harmony weighs around 5 pounds each.
Even though there are a few users reviews that the mat has a kind of rubber smell that tends to stay around for a little while, there are several suggestions to show you how you can effectively and quickly get the smell to fade away while the smells give a quick reminder that the mat is rubber and could tend to have a lasting odor just like many rubbers do.
There a variety of color options with Jade Harmony Professional yoga mat. The mat gives you the chance to find the best color option that perfectly fits your style. The color variation goes up to 7 different color options to choose from.
About Jade Yoga
The Jade Yoga we know today actually started a few years ago – the year 2000 precisely. That was when savvy yogi approached them complaining about PVC and plastic mats. The Jade Yoga is rightly known for providing a natural solution to yogis with their eco-friendly and non-slip rubber mats since the early 1970s. They are not only dedicated to making sure all yoga lovers had the best experience in their practice, but their give back programs are well known throughout the US.
Even though the initial plan of Gaiam is to make this mat an extra thick one, but it eventually falls at the middles regarding that initial measurement. The Gaiam Print Premium is also one of the smallest mats we have today on the market. The mat is relatively light weight and less dense. However, unlike the Manduka mats, the Gaiam Print Premium offers a lesser level of comfort. The mat has a non-slip surface to keep you safe while having your practice.
It is an eco-friendly mat made with a new biodegradable and hypoallergenic resin. These materials do not give off toxic chemicals and so ensures you stay safe while you use the mat. The mat is latex-, rubber-, and silicone-free.
Size and weight
The Gaiam Print Premium comes in one size; 68×24” with a thickness of 5 mm. The mat is a bit denser than many of the mats reviewed here on our list. Though the size is still comparable to many of them. Also, just like the Aurorae Classic, this mat is very light when it comes to its shipping weight, as it only weighs around 3.2 pounds and thus confirming its lightness among many mats on the market right now.
The Gaiam Print Premium yoga mat is a mat made from natural resin material and thus makes it relatively odorless. Another amazing thing about the mat is that it is not only devoid of odors, it also doesn’t absorb odors either. That, of course, is one of the features that makes the mat popular among people that sweats a lot during their practice.
The mat also comes in a variety of color just as many other mats reviewed here. You have the option to choose between different colors of up to 12 different choices. Which means, with the Gaiam Print Premium mat, you wouldn’t have any trouble finding the color that best matches your style.
The Gaiam Print Premium comes with a warranty of up to 2 years in order to keep their customers assured of the quality of what they are investing into.
The leading aim of the company, Gaiam is to ensure fitness, yoga, and overall well-being is a thing that is easily accessible to all. The right pronunciation is “guy-um”, and it rightly represents planetary awareness, support, and preservation of the interconnectivity of all living things.
5.Yoga Design Lab Combo Mat – this is simply the most artistic mat on the market
This is no doubt, your ultimate yoga companion because that was what the mat was built to be. Because of the increase in the cases of slipping off during yoga practices, the company decided to make a mat that will mitigate this and so made this mat in the bid to reduce slipping to reduce injuries, as well as eliminate the use of towel during class. You can also wash with machines.
The Yoga Design Lab Combo is also an open cell mat made from an eco-friendly and biodegradable material. The mat is 100% natural tree rubber with eater-based inks on it. Together with its microfiber top, the mat also has a tree rubber base. The mat is completely free of toxic glue, silicone, and phthalates.
Size and weight
The Yoga Design Lab Combo is 70” x 24” in size while measuring up to 3.5 mm in thickness. This thus, makes it the thinnest mat on our list here. However, even as thin as the mat seems to be, it is denser than a lot of other mats that are slightly thicker on the market.
Although Yoga Design Lab acclaims the mat is odorless, certain reviews that have been coming from users mentioned it that the mat is not odorless and did not have anything compared to the smell of other tree rubber mats. Also, many reviews also pointed it out that the mat often smells good because they spray with essential oils and wash it.
The Yoga Design Lab Combo mat is built to stand unique among other mats and there are a variety of prints available; up to 9 bold prints.
About Yoga Design Lab
The Yoga Design Lab company was birth on a trip to Bali by Chad. Chad discovered that he could do something to change the trend in yoga mat as the sea of mats in his packed yoga class was made of unoriginal, solid colored mats. With his right combination of fashion with function, he has been able to make mats and accessories for yoga. Another amazing thing about the company is their Giving-back program to the Urban Youth Yoga Programs who are in need of each purchase made.
WHAT TO LOOK OUT FOR WHEN CHOOSING A YOGA MAT
In some few years ago, the only choice available when people want to choose a Yoga mat for personal use was whether to buy a red or purple mat. That was because we only have one basic type of yoga mat which were all made of PVC and well-known for its thickness. However, today, there are a variety of yoga mats available on the market to suit your specific priority and preference.
Apart from the pattern and color that suits your style, there are few other things to consider before opting for a particular type of yoga mat. The best yoga mat needs to keep you stable in your poses; it should be easy to store, yet cushy and comfy. You also need to make sure your mat is eco-friendly to keep you save while you work on your fitness plan. These personalities of your mat are all determined by many things, including its surface texture, thickness, material from which it is made, e.t.c.
You can always use this guide when you consider choosing a yoga mat that will not only help you achieve your fitness goals but will also keep you happy and safe.
Although the thickness of a yoga mat is very important in order to make you comfortable during your exercise sessions, you shouldn’t allow that factor to interfere with your balance. Yoga mats with standard thickness should have a balance of ¼ inches while those with extra cushioning come with an additional ½-inch thickness. Portable yoga mats can be as thin as 1/16 inches.
The yoga mat you intend to go for should not be too thin to avoid getting your knees getting banged, especially when performing one of the yoga poses known as the crescent lunge. But yoga mats must not be too thick as well since that could prevent you from feeling a strong connection to the floor. This could make you shaky or wobbly when carrying out some yoga poses like the Tree pose, etc.
You have several options: regular yoga mats are about 1/8 inches thick, with the thickest being ¼ inches. Yoga mats that are wafer-thin often advertised as ‘travel yoga mats’ which are not more than 1/16 inches thick, can be folded easily. They don’t weigh much, making it a piece of cake when fitting it in a suitcase.
You should always consider how much space you have to put away your yoga mat after use, as well as how portable it is. You need to also determine your sweet spot when it comes to comfort or your connection to the floor. It also depends on whether or not you like your yoga mat to have extra padding. Most yoga mats in this range are the 1/8-inch type.
If you prefer a yoga mat with more cushioning, then you may have to go for one that is approximately ¼ inch thick. They are usually more expensive as well.
MATERIAL AND ECO-FRIENDLINESS
The material used in making a yoga mat determines its stickiness, sponginess, eco-friendliness, and texture. Sponginess has to do with how much the yoga mat yields to pressure as well as how it wears sooner or later.
A majority of yoga mats are made of polyvinyl chloride (PVC), but more earth-friendly and newer options are hitting the market every day. Some of these newer mats are made with natural materials such as recycled rubber, natural or organic cotton and jute. This implies that the fabric used in making those yoga mats are not treated using synthetic finishes during the manufacturing process.
Yogis hold the tenet of ahimsa (i.e. not harming living things) dear to their hearts, which is why practicing on a yoga mat which could potentially bring harm to the environment in years to come are very upsetting. This is the reason yogis opt for yoga mats made of eco-friendly materials.
Some yoga mats are made of latex, so if you are allergic to it, then you need to avoid yoga mats made of rubber. For yoga mats that have been tried and tested, consider using a yoga mat made of PVC which is usually sticky (more on that later on in this article). PVC yoga mats offer more elasticity or spring compared to yoga mats made of cotton or jute.
But if eco-friendliness is your goal, then you need to avoid the standard PVC yoga mat because it is not biodegradable in landfills. Recycling such yoga mats is very costly and difficult as well. Yoga mats that are made of natural materials like cotton or jute are slicker and thicker than their PVC counterparts. Available in several ranges of thickness, most yoga mats using natural materials are portable, offer significant comfort and come with upraised geometric patterns which prevent slippage. This is a thing you need to consider when you want to choose a yoga mat.
This is an important attribute your yoga mat should possess. The mat must be sticky enough to prevent you from sliding from one place to another during your exercise session. The stickiness of a yoga mat also helps you in maintaining your alignment as you change from one yoga posture to another for more than a few seconds.
You may not like the idea of practicing yoga on a mat that comes with a raised texture. In this case, opting for the regular PVC mat – believed to have the highest sticky factor – may be the best for you. Bear in mind that yoga mats retain their sticky attribute only when they are clean. Therefore, taking care of your yoga mat is absolutely necessary.
If you end up going for a PVC mat, wash it with yoga wash cleaner before making use of it for the first time. You should do the same when you start noticing that your hands slid or the mat feels slippery to the touch.
Yoga mats come in various patterns, colors or prints. So, if you have a favorite color, you can select the type or model you want.
As a rule, a typical PVC solid-color yoga mat that is 1/8 inches thick is relatively inexpensive. Of course, you may have to pay more if you desire a yoga mat with elaborate logos or designs as well as premium thickness. The price of a yoga mat may also be on the high side if it has undergone antimicrobial treatment and with cool textures as well as tactile patterns.
FINAL SAY ON YOGA MAT
As much as this guide will help you when choosing a yoga mat perfect for your style and fitness goal, the best way to find a mat for your preferences is by trial and error, but that can be an expensive option. However, combining the valuable information provided in this guide and recommendations from your yoga teacher and classmates could make a huge difference in helping you make the best choice for your investment.