The demand for yoga mats used to be so small that there were very few options. Fortunately, all of that has changed.
Yoga is an excellent form of exercise, and for many people, it is key to living a holistic lifestyle. There are many different types of yoga, which is part of the reason for its popularity. Yoga frequently involves stretching your body in complicated and unusual positions, although there are exceptions, such as prenatal yoga.
Because of this, most people who practice yoga use a yoga mat. Not only does this provide better traction for your body, but it is a much more comfortable surface to practice on.
Since there were so few types of yoga mats in the past, there was no need for a guide like this. But in the spirit of the modern world, here is our list of the ten best yoga mats on the market.
Things to Consider
Buying a yoga mat could possibly be one of the most important purchases you will ever make. That said, if you practice yoga diligently for any reasonable length of time, you’re going to want to invest in a yoga mat that suits your needs. Here are five things to keep in mind before you make your purchase.
There is no right or wrong thickness for a yoga mat, as this one depends on your preference. A thicker mat provides more cushioning and is more comfortable, while thinner mats offer closer contact with the floor, and are also more compact, making them better suited for traveling. If you’re doing prenatal yoga, for instance, you’re going to want to get a thicker mat.
In the past, yoga mats were almost always made out of PVC. That has changed. Now you can buy yoga mats made with a variety of materials, including vinyl, rubber, cotton and recycled materials. The material you use affects almost every aspect of your yoga mat, including its texture, sponginess, and lifespan, so choose carefully.
Yoga mats also vary in texture. Some mats are perfectly smooth, while others are designed to be rougher and bumpier. The texture of the mat has a lot to do with how much you’ll slip and slide while doing yoga, but it can also affect the comfort of the mat as well.
In a lot of ways, the stickiness of a yoga mat and the texture of a yoga mat go hand in hand. You see, both the texture and the stickiness affects how easy it is to slip and slide. In fact, getting a sticky yoga mat can be a good way to offset the effect of buying a smooth mat. However, yoga mats are only sticky when they’re clean, so don’t let your dirt and sweat build upon it.
Yoga mats can vary in price by a surprising amount, from $20 to a couple of hundred dollars. Before you decide how much you want to spend on a yoga mat, ask yourself how often you attend classes or practice yoga at home. You don’t want to spend several hundred dollars on a yoga mat you only use once a month.
The Best Yoga Mats
Sivan Health and Fitness Yoga Mat
- 71” x 12” in size
- 12 mm thick memory foam – one of the thickest mats on the market
- Made with synthetic nitril rubber
- Lightly textured for better grip
I don’t practice a lot of yoga myself. I’ve gone with my wife a couple of times, but I don’t like it. So while I did test out these yoga mats with the three or four positions I know, I asked my wife to help me test these products out.
I have no idea what brand of yoga mat my wife used when she attended prenatal yoga, but it was quite similar to the Sivan Health and Fitness Foam Yoga Mat. Large, thick and made of nitrile rubber, this is a cheap but surprisingly effective low-cost yoga mat.
Nitrile rubber is a synthetic rubber, so if you’re concerned with eco-friendly materials, you’ll have to look elsewhere. But if you just want a comfortable mat to exercise on, this is a good choice.
The yoga mats are available in six different colors and measures 71 inches (6 feet) x 24 inches (2 feet) x 12 millimeters (½ inch). The memory foam absorbs your weight well, so it’s quite comfortable, and this is one of the thickest yoga mats on the market. It is lightly textured for a better grip, and it has a strap so you can carry it easily when it’s rolled up.
Best of all, it weighs less than two pounds. It’s a little bit bulkier than thinner yoga mats, but I think the added comfort is well worth it.
Gaiam Classic Yoga Mat
- 68” x 24” in size, weighs 2 pounds, only 3mm thick
- Comes in 30 different designs
- Textured and non-slip
- Comes with a yoga workout document
The next yoga mat on this list is made by Gaiam Print. This is a very basic yoga mat without a lot of frills, which makes it an ideal mat for those who just want the basics. However, it’s very thin, and not the most comfortable mat to use.
Although the Gaiam Print yoga mats are made with PVC materials, it avoids the use of half a dozen phthalates, including DEHP, DBP, BBP, DINP, DIDP, and DNOP. I’m not a chemist, so I can’t say for sure whether this mat avoids all phthalates, but it certainly makes an effort to avoid the worst of them.
The mat is designed to be both textured and non-slip, and it measures 68 inches (5 ¾ feet) by 24 inches (2 feet), with a thickness of 3 millimeters (1/10 of an inch), and it weighs just 2 pounds.
The most impressive thing about the Gaiam Print mats is the astounding variety of choices. Amazon offers no less than 30 different designs, so you can pick a design that speaks directly to you. The mat also includes a yoga workout document which you can download with your purchase. However, I didn’t find it all that useful, and it doesn’t provide any information that a yoga class wouldn’t.
Aurorae Classic/Printed Yoga Mat
- 72” x 24” in size, 5mm thick
- Comes with a slip-free resin
- Comes with a two-year guarantee
- Available in 10 different designs
I profess no great love of yoga. I do it to spend time with my wife, but I’d much rather enjoy just about any other form of exercise. However, I’d be lying if I said I didn’t love some of the designs on the Aurorae Printed Yoga Mats.
The Aurorae yoga mats are available in ten different designs, at least five of which are awesome. They’re also made to be environmentally friendly. To be honest, I’m not quite sure what they’re made out of, but since there is no silicone, latex, phenols, phthalates or PAHs (Polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons), I assume its made with some post-consumer material.
The yoga mats measure 72 inches (6 feet) by 24 inches (2 feet) by 5 mm (1/5 inch) and come with a slip-free resin. Even better, these yoga mats are backed by a two-year guarantee. That in itself makes this an excellent choice. I prefer my yoga mats to be a little thicker, but that’s just my preference. These are an excellent choice for eco-friendly yoga mats with awesome graphics.
Lululemon Reversible Mat 5mm
- Reversible – one polyurethane side and another natural rubber side
- Can be used wet or dry, so it’s great for all types of yoga
- 5mm thick and slightly bigger than standard-size yoga mats (72” x 26”)
- Antimicrobial additive to prevent buildup of mold and mildew
Slightly bigger than the average yoga mat by approximately 3 inches in length and 2 inches in width, the Reversible Mat 5mm from Lululemon gives you a little more breathing room but is still small enough to bring to a yoga class without taking up too much space. It’s a little on the heavy side, but still shouldn’t be a problem for most people to transport with relative ease.
As the name suggests, the main feature of this yoga mat is its reversibility – there’s one smooth but “sticky” side made out of polyurethane that adheres your hands and feet to the mat, and another spongy, “grippy” side made out of natural rubber that provides traction.
Therefore, you can switch it up according to your needs – whatever type of yoga you’re doing, be it classic, hot, or restorative. This is a great feature that makes this product a cut above many of the rest in this price bracket.
The Lululemon Reversible Mat is 5 mm thick, which offers plenty of support and stops elbows and knees from becoming sore after a long session – whatever side you choose to use. Furthermore, an antimicrobial additive helps to prevent a buildup of mold and mildew, thereby keeping unwanted odors at bay.
However, the only quibble is that the mat apparently has a slight natural smell when it’s new – according to the Lululemon website, this should fade with time but you should unroll and air it before taking it to a class.
Aurorae Synergy 2 in 1 Yoga Mat
- Two layers (PER base and microfibre top)
- Designed for Bikram (hot) yoga
- Extra-large at 78” x 26”
- Comes with a two-year guarantee
Bikram yoga is a very intense form of yoga and one that requires a different kind of yoga mat than the ones you often see in a standard session. The main point of Bikram is to get your body hot, so you sweat more for various reasons I’m not particularly familiar with. What I do know is that because of all that sweat, it can get very difficult to maintain your positions without slipping.
That’s why Aurorae created the Synergy 2 in 1. The base of the mat is made with a polymer environmental resin (PER), a non-toxic compound that is designed to biodegrade over time. Layered on top of the PER is a stitched microfiber towel. The fibers help to absorb your sweat, and the texture of the fabric keeps your arms and legs firmly in place, making it a lot easier to enjoy a fulfilling session of Bikram yoga.
These extra-large yoga pads measure 78 inches by 26 inches by the ¼ inch and are backed by a two-year guarantee. The microfiber towel may not be the best material for standard yoga sessions, but if you’re doing Bikram, it can make a huge difference.
Jade Harmony Yoga Mat
- Made with natural rubber
- 74” x 24” in size
- Increased grip, so good for hot yoga
- For every mat sold, a tree will be planted
Like the XRSize Premium mat above, the Jade Harmony Professional Yoga Mat is also made of natural rubber, making this unsuitable for anyone with a latex allergy. For those who prefer to use yoga mats with natural materials, however, this is one of the best choices.
Measuring 74 inches by 24 inches by 3/16 inch, the JadeYoga Harmony mat is available in eight different colors. Its natural rubber design makes it easier to grip and less likely for you to slide if you get sweaty. It also serves as a natural cushion, making the experience more comfortable.
One of my favorite things about this mat has nothing to do with the mat itself. JadeYoga is partnered with Trees for the Future, and for every mat sold, a tree will be planted somewhere. That doesn’t necessarily make this the best yoga mat – and I don’t think it is – but I have to respect a good cause.
Manduka PROlite Yoga Mat
- Fairly heavy, at almost 5 pounds
- At 79” x 24” in size, it’s one of the larger yoga mats
- Closed cell surface protects from sweat and dirt
- Comes with a lifetime guarantee
The first thing I noticed about the Manduka PROLite Yoga Mat is that it’s a fairly heavy yoga mat. Weighing in at almost five pounds, this is easily the heaviest yoga mat listed so far.
That said, it’s also one of the largest. The Manduka PROLite measures 79 includes by 24 inches by 4.7 millimeters and is made with some non-toxic, latex-free material. It has a special dot pattern on the bottom of the mat to stop it from sliding across the floor, while its closed-cell surface protects the material from sweat and dirt.
The PROLite is available in 10 vibrant colors and comes with a lifetime guarantee. I don’t know how that lifetime guarantee would play out in real-time, as it doesn’t seem to be an official warranty, but that doesn’t diminish the quality of this excellent yoga mat. The only real downside is the weight. Five pounds isn’t a lot, but it’s a lot more than two.
Kharma Khare Legacy Eco-Friendly Yoga Mat
- Made with rubber from recycled car tires
- Weighing 8 pounds, it’s one of the heaviest yoga mats
- Offers excellent traction and superior grip
- 74” x 24” in size and 7 mm thick
Another in a long line of eco-friendly yoga mats, the Kharma Khare Legacy Eco-Friendly Yoga Mat is made with rubber from recycled car tires. Car tires are typically one of the worst landfill offenders, making these mats an excellent way to at least partially combat the waste.
The downside of the material is that it’s even heavier than the Manduka PROLite, weighing 8 pounds! On the bright side, there are no phthalates, polyurethane or other toxic chemicals to be found, and it offers excellent traction and superior grip over most other yoga mats.
Measuring 72 inches by 24 inches by 7 millimeters, the mat is slightly thicker than the average yoga mat. It is environmentally friendly and an excellent way to recycle old resources, but it’s rather heavy and not very attractive to look at, which means it’s not my favorite yoga mat on the list, in spite of its strong points.
Yoloha Tribal Native Cork Mat
- Hand-crafted in the US featuring a pattern inspired by African textiles and Mud Cloth Designs
- Made from recycled materials (cork and rubber) – no PVCs or harsh chemicals used
- 5mm thick (3.5 mm rubber, 1.5 mm cork)
- 72” x 26” in size and weighs 4 pounds
Yoloha is a brand that prides itself on craftsmanship, using only natural, recycled materials to make this hand-made yoga mat that features an attractive pattern inspired by African textiles and Mud Cloth Designs. At 72” x 26”, it’s slightly larger than a standard-sized mat, so there’s a little more legroom but it’s still small enough to take to class.
The mat is 5mm thick, with a 3.5 mm bottom layer made of rubber and a 1.5 mm top layer made of cork. This makes it sturdy enough to provide reasonable support and stop elbows and knees hurting after a long session. It’s also extremely lightweight, at just 4 pounds, meaning it’s easy to transport when you want to go to class.
Cork also provides a great grip, whether it’s wet or dry, making it ideal for all types of yoga. The only downside, however, is that some reviews mention the cork deteriorating after a lot of use, so it’s perhaps not the most durable material to use for the top layer, despite being environmentally friendly.
Even so, and despite the relatively high price tag, the Yoloha Tribal Native Cork Mat is a great choice for environmentally conscious people who want a sturdy, lightweight, attractive mat suitable for multiple types of yoga.
Maatï Maatï The Mat
- Hand-made using premium cork for increased flexibility and increased grip
- Water- and dust-resistant
- 68” x 24” inches in size, 6 mm thick, and weighs 2 pounds
- Attractive design
The Maatï Maatï website claims that these are the first premium cork yoga mats on the market, and who are we to argue? The cork is labeled as “premium” because it’s not agglomerated cork, which is what’s usually used in yoga mats.
Instead, it’s made from natural large slices of hand-selected cork from Portugal that are brought together in a patchwork featuring a small Turkish eye (the brand logo) on the top – the company claims that this makes each and every Maatï Maatï yoga mat unique, as well as more flexible than the average cork yoga mat on the market.
Either way, the Maatï Maatï yoga mat is naturally water- and dust-resistant, so it’s great for use in all kinds of environment and for all types of yoga. Additionally, it has great grip, meaning you’re less likely to slip when attempting the more adventurous moves.
Although, at 68” x 24”, it’s the same size as a standard yoga mat, it’s quite a bit thicker, at 6 mm. This means it provides optimum cushioning, making it one of the most comfortable mats available. Furthermore, at just 2 pounds, it’s one of the most lightweight yoga mats on the market, meaning it’s no problem at all to transport it anywhere you like.
The obvious downfall to the Maatï Maatï yoga mat is the hefty price tag – but if you practice yoga regularly and can afford to spare the cash, you probably won’t regret splashing out.
Trying to find the right yoga mat for you can be a challenge. There as so many different types of materials to choose from, from PVC to rubber and mysterious, recycled materials.
Whether you want something that won’t slip during hot yoga or you simply want a thicker mat to help you through prenatal yoga, this guide will help you find the mat you need.
*All prices mentioned above are at the time of publishing.
66cm x 180cm (26″ x 71″), 5mm (0.19″)”
Natural and synthetic rubber
66cm x 180cm (26″ x 71″), 5mm (0.19″)”
Natural and synthetic rubber