Updated: Apr 20, 2021
A quick Pinterest search and you'll be smacked in the face with recipe after recipe of DIY mat sprays featuring essential oils to clean and disinfect your precious mat. While I love a good oily recipe as much as the crunchy mom next to me I personally don't recommend using them on your mat. WHY? I am glad you asked...
No matter your budget, a yoga mat is an investment, especially a high quality one. When your spending anywhere from $50-150 for a mat you want to know that your investment is going to last. Some mats begin to break down over time when exposed to oils and heavy cleaning agents. I would hate to find that my beloved mat is falling apart because of something I did. And then even worse because what I thought was helping was just ruining it.
I recommend reading the cleaning instructions that came with your mat. Oh, those are long gone, you say.
Most mat companies have cleaning instructions listed on their sites. Or have their own mat cleaner designed to be used on their mats. But if you aren't able to find those I recommend this recipe:
4-5 drops of dish soap - I prefer Dawn
large bucket of warm water
a natural sponge or one that is free from dyes - I say this from experience
Step 1: Add your soap to A LOT of warm water - DILUTE - DILUTE - DILUTE
Step 2: Dip in your sponge and remove as much excess water as you can - think lightly damp
Step 3: Wipe down your mat in small sections rubbing in small strokes. Repeat until the entire mat has been wiped down.
Step 4: Allow your mat to air dry flat.
Super simply, I know! But it works and will protect your investment. And it will prevent unnecessary wear to your mat. After this bottle of Dawn I’m going to try the dye and fragrance free option.
BONUS SIDE BAR - I used a blue sponge to clean my white Liforme mat... BIG MISTAKE!!
The sponge had residual dye inside of it, or something. The dye transferred to my mat!!
It took us, yep, me and my husband, an hour of scrubbing. The blue streaks are now just dots but they are still there and I am super bummed about it still. BUT I know this is because these mats are super absorbent (more on that in another post). And that is one feature I love because I don't have to use a mat towel.
In conclusion, I know those fun oily sprays look appealing! I have made and used them myself. But after the investment of a quality mat and doing lots more research I think using mild soap and water with a high quality sponge is the way to go. I know I want my mat to last a long time and so do you!