How to clean your yoga mat at home

Some yoga practices do, by nature, cause the body to sweat and that sweat will in turn transfer to your yoga mat along with dirt it collects from the floor. This, if left uncleaned, will result in the build up of odour and bacteria. 

How to clean your yoga mat at home


Wiping your yoga mat down after every use is a good habit to get into. Antibacterial wipes are a great tool to use for this. Most gyms will have antibacterial sprays and disposable paper towels available. Even if you are the sole user of your mat and you only use it at home, the same rules apply. The build up of germs can cause issues including fungal infections such as athlete's foot. It is important though to also ensure you give your mat a thorough clean regularly to keep it fresh and dirt free, not only for hygiene reasons but also to help preserve it.

It may be tempting to put off going to the trouble of deep cleaning your yoga mat but actually, the process is very easy and definitely worth doing. How often you clean it is a personal choice and may depend on how often you use it but as a general rule of thumb, wipe down with antibacterial wipes/spray after every use and deep clean at least once a month.

Before cleaning your yoga mat, it is essential that you check the manufacturer instructions as yoga mats do vary and some may not be suitable for certain washing methods which may damage the mat.

Washing your yoga mat:

  1. Place your yoga mat in the bathtub with warm soapy water (don’t make the water too hot). You only need a small amount of soap in the bathtub. Too much could result in the mat becoming slippery.
  2. Soak the mat for a few minutes.
  3. Wipe the mat thoroughly with a clean, soft cloth. Remember to wash both sides of the mat and to wipe the whole mat, corner to corner.
  4. Once you have finished wiping it down, allow the water in the bathtub to drain away, rinse the mat with clean water ensuring that all of the soap has been rinsed away.
  5. Shake off the excess water, dry your mat with a clean towel then allow it to air by draping it over the washing line or over the back of a chair. 
  6. Ensure your mat is dried thoroughly before storing or using it.

If you are short of time or it is impractical for you to use the bathtub to soak your yoga mat, you can:

  1. Lay your mat on a flat surface.
  2. Prepare a bowl of warm soapy water.
  3. Dip a clean soft cloth into the water, squeeze out the excess water and wipe the yoga mat down on both sides, corner to corner.
  4. Wipe it over with a fresh, clean towel and air dry as per point 5 above.