How to Wash a Yoga Mat

It happens to the best of yogis. You’re trying to relax in child’s pose when you catch a whiff of something rank. You nonchalantly turn your head to your right and inhale deeply. Nope, not your neighbor to your right. You turn your head to the left and take a big whiff. Nope, not your neighbor to your left. Confused, you place your forehead back down on your mat, but immediately recoil in horror. It’s you! The One With The Stinky Mat!

You can prevent this from happening. Not only does regular mat cleaning help with odours, but it also gets rid of the oils, sweat and dirt that accumulates during a yoga session.

After every yoga session, you should use a spray to clean your mat. Here are two solutions that gets the job done:

  1. Fill a spray bottle with equal parts water and distilled white vinegar. Add any essential oils that you wish, so the solution doesn’t smell like vinegar.
  2. Fill a spray bottle with water almost to the top. Add 4 drops of lavender essential oil, 3 drops of tea tree oil and 3 drops of grapefruit seed extract.

Spray the solution of your choice on your mat and wipe with a towel.

For a more thorough cleansing: Unroll your mat and place it in the washing machine (front loading washer preferred). Add a tiny bit of mild detergent, like baby detergent, and run the machine on gentle cycle using cold water and no spin cycle. Rinse the soap off with lukewarm water before rolling the mat up with two towels to absorb the excess water. Unroll and hang to dry. It may take between 24 to 48 hours for the mat to dry completely.