5 Best Non-Toxic Yoga Mat in 2019

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An experienced yogi will tell you how important yoga mats are while practicing yoga. Whether you’re doing a complex pose or simple stretch, yoga mats will help you maintain your balance and posture. Some mats even have sticky surfaces to give you that much-needed grip. However, most of these yoga mats are made from materials like vinyl and polyvinyl chloride (PVC) to give more support and flexibility.

These materials are harmful to the human body and can expose you to a number of diseases. Smelling the rubber and latex from the yoga mat won’t help you in any form. That is why in this article we will help you buy the Best Non-Toxic Yoga Mat. 

Effects of Toxic Yoga Mats

Yoga mats help you practice yoga without slipping and falling on the ground. Most yoga mats are made from vinyl chloride and these mats help you provide that sticky surface. But these kinds of yoga mats can put your health at risk. The following list illustrates the harmful effects of toxic yoga mats.

Exposure to PVC through inhalation

In its natural form, PVC cannot be used on its own to make yoga mats. In order to make it soft and product ready, chemicals like phthalates are used. These chemicals are linked to a number of health issues like asthma, cancer, obesity and even birth defects. They also cause neurodevelopmental problems in newborns. Therefore, prolonged exposure to PVC will put your health at a risk.

Fertility issues

PVC can cause malformations in the reproductive tract and is linked to testicular cancer. Pregnancy issues are sometimes linked to high PVC exposure, Moreover, PVC and its derivatives can harm the reproductive system of pregnant women and put unborn children at risk. The exposure can cause low weight babies and preterm birth issues.

Disposal problems

Disposal of toxic yoga mats is not very easy. They cannot be burnt or dumped. They release1 harmful gases like dioxin which is a carcinogen. The chemicals can also percolate into the topsoil and cause soil pollution. It can even harm the nearby vegetation. Burning them gives rise to hydrogen chloride gas which is corrosive and toxic to the aquatic life.

Factors to Consider When Looking for A Non-Toxic Yoga Mat

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Support

Proper support is crucial while doing any yoga pose. If you need support and strength while doing complex stretches, you can opt for a thin mat. A thin mat can help you connect more deeply with the ground and also provide the necessary stickiness to control your posture. Always look for material that is non-toxic, unlike PVC and polyurethane. Look for mats made from TPE (Thermoplastic elastomers). They are similar to PVC but less toxic in nature.

Thickness

If you are doing yoga regularly, then a thin mat won’t suffice. The rugged use will eventually damage the mat. A thick mat, on the other hand, will have better longevity. IT will also give you extra support when you segue into different poses. If you are older and want to protect your joints, try getting a thicker mat for additional cushioning.

Texture

The texture is an important point to consider while choosing a non-toxic yoga mat. Certain yoga types like the hot yoga can make the body sweat profusely. If you have a slippery mat, switching to the next pose without slipping even the slightest would be impossible.

Consider getting a yoga mat that has built-in texture or is made from a natural material. Jute yoga mats can be a great alternative to the slippery mats. You will also have additional support without having to slip into an awkward posture. 

Mobility

If you love to practice yoga in a studio, get mats that are lightweight and easily transportable. Some yoga mats are easily foldable and fit inside a travel case without any hassle. Look for mats that are lightweight, portable and easy to fold. If you have a portable mat, you can easily bring this to the gym, to the park or even your office.

Durable

Durability will matter a lot if you want to use your yoga mat for a very long time. You do not want your money to go to the wrong place. Therefore, investing it a yoga mat that is durable and long lasting is a good choice to make. Certain materials can’t handle rugged use and wear out easily. Make sure to look carefully on the product specifications before making a purchase.

Maintenance

Nothing lasts longer without proper maintenance. This is true in the case of a non-toxic yoga mat. Look for a yoga mat that can handle hand and machine wash. Certain materials shrug after the first wash. This is completely normal. Cleaning your yoga mat with bleach and other strong detergents can cause it to wear quickly. Mats made from textiles require careful handling.

Eco-friendly

Look for yoga mats that are less harmful to your body and the environment around you. You can go with Jute, cotton, TPE, natural rubber and cork instead of PVC. PVC has carcinogenic effects on the body. Try to avoid buying PVC mats as much as possible. Always look for non-toxic alternatives while buying a yoga mat.

Warranty/Refund Policy

This is important specially if you opt to buy your mat online. If you have issues with the mat, you can send it back or get a refund if the product has a warranty.

Commonly Used Materials to Make Yoga Mats

Jute

Yoga mats made from Jute are good for those who are looking for a bit of texture and roughness on their yoga mat. Jute is a sustainable resource and helps in cleaning the air through the process. Jute plants grow really fast compared to others and is a biodegradable resource. This means that you could chop it off and use it as compost for the plants.

Cork

Cork is produced from the bark of a cork oak tree. Cork mats have a smooth surface, deliver good grip and also are very durable. Removal of bark from the cork oak tree doesn’t damage the tree in any shape or form. Cork yoga mats have a distinct texture to them.

Natural rubber

Natural rubber mats are slightly on the heavier side. Made from the rubber extracted from the rubber trees grown in Central and South America, these mats are a better alternative than PVC. Natural rubber doesn’t last as long as synthetic rubber but is a sustainable source. It is biodegradable and can have other applications as well.

TPE

Thermoplastic elastomers also known as TPC is commonly used in most of the mats. They are extremely lightweight, durable, long lasting and provide good traction. Unlike PVC, TPE doesn’t harm the environment and can be produced synthetically. This makes the mats made from TPE cost effective and affordable to buy.

The 5 Best Non-Toxic Yoga Mat

1. Aurorae Printed Eco Safe Yoga Mat 

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Editor's Rating

This non-toxic mat from Aurorae is the best gift for a yogi. The mat is 72’’ long and 24’’ wide with prints to focus your attention on. The material used has very little effect on the environment. These mats are tested and found safe. They do not contain Phthalates and other synthetic chemicals. These mats can be used by men, women, and kids who are looking for a fun outdoor yoga session, beach party, camping and other activities. If you are looking for a lightweight, durable, odorless and easy to care yoga mat, this is the one.


Pros

  • Lightweight
  • Easy to wash and maintain
  • Durable 
  • Odorless 
  • Nontoxic 
  • Biodegradable material

Pros

  • The mat is slightly smooth and may slip 
  • Reduced grip
  • Needs to be used with a towel

2. Gaiam Yoga Mat

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Editor's Rating

This mat from Gaiam has exotic color choices. Are you bored with flat colors? The printed patterns on these mats are to die for. If you are old, you will probably make use of the additional cushioning that this mat offers. It is lightweight, durable and is extra thick. The sticky non-slip texture will protect you from slipping while you do your poses. Keep the planet healthy y choosing a non-toxic 6P PVC Free mat from Gaiam. You will get a free bonus yoga workout to help you get started with yoga. 


Pros

  • This yoga mat is extra thick
  • Easy to wash and maintain
  • Made from non-toxic material 
  • Non-slip texture
  • Exotic prints and color choices 

Pros

  • The mat is slippery on certain surfaces 
  • The mat has less grip
  • Has a pungent smell
  • Less traction 

3. Natural Jute 

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Editor's Rating

Made from Jute, which is a naturally sustainable material, this matter makes up for the best alternative to PVC yoga mats. A stand out feature of this particular yoga mat is that s comes with a sling carrier that you can strap over your shoulders and carry it wherever you like.

The yoga mat is soft on your skin and joints so that you don’t have to worry about the latter and focus on your yoga. The mat has dual layers to improve comfort and provide additional cushioning. The no-slip mat has enough real estate to accommodate yogis of all size. You can clean this yoga mat with the help of a wet wipe or by using a disinfectant. This will ensure the longevity of the yoga mat.


Pros

  • Made from natural jute
  • Non-toxic PVC free material
  • Nonslip fabric
  • Easy to clean and maintain
  • Soft on the skin and joints
  • Cushioning effect 

Pros

  • The mat has less traction 
  • The mat is slightly rough

4. Heathyoga Eco-Friendly

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Editor's Rating

This eco-friendly non-slip mat is made from TPE which is an alternative for PVC. TPC does not contain latex, PVC or even harmful chemicals. This mat is odorless, non-toxic, lightweight and is completely environmentally friendly. If you have alignment issues while doing yoga, you can make use of the alignment lines provided on this yoga mat to correct your posture. The mat has sufficient thickness and enough real estate to accommodate all sizes of yogis. The mat delivers excellent cushioning effect for those sensitive joints. 


Pros

  • Eco-friendly material
  • Biodegradable 
  • Odorless and non-toxic 
  • Lightweight and easy to transport
  • Cushioning effect 

Pros

  • The mat is less durable 
  • The surface is a dirt magnet

5. IUGA Pro with Free Carry Strap

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Editor's Rating

This yoga mat from IUGA is a non-slip high performance that is ideal for all kinds of fun and recreational activities. Made especially for yogis, the mat has an eco-friendly tag and is SGS certified. The mat has a thin polyurethane coating to prevent sliding and slipping. The mat is odorless, lightweight and can be carried around easily with the help of slip on sling carry case that you can strap on your shoulder. The mat is easy to wash and can last you for a long time with careful maintenance.


Pros

  • Good traction
  • Lightweight 
  • Portable 
  • Odor-free mat
  • Non-toxic and safe 

Pros

  • The surface is a dirt magnet 
  • The material may flake upon rugged usage

Conclusion

Many yoga mats and blankets have made their debut and left unheard. Offering traction and the non-slip surface is one thing but the materials used to deliver these properties also need to be considered. Today, the study shows the ill effects of using PVC in yoga mats. Therefore, it is required that you make the switch from PVC to the natural non-toxic yoga mat.

This way, you’ll keep your health and environment happy without compromising your posture or comfort level. Before you purchase any yoga mat online, always make sure to look for credentials that vouch for the non-toxic tag. Make an informed decision when you purchase and pay for non-toxic yoga mats. What are you waiting for? Unleash the yogi within and switch to the non-toxic yoga mat. 

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