The Best Yoga Mats
A yoga mat should be comfortable and supportive, provide adequate grip to prevent you from slipping, and be no-fuss enough to clean and bring (perhaps only from home to the park for now, but eventually back to in-person classes at your favorite gym or studio) (perhaps just from home to the park for now, but eventually back to in-person classes at your beloved gym or studio).
Our hatha and hot-yoga teachers Downward-Dogged, Ashtanga vinyasa-flowed, and Savasanaed on 33 of the best yoga mats (and one mat alternative), and the one that came out on top is Lululemon’s The Reversible Mat 5mm . Its dual-textured sides, firm-yet-cushiony rubber construction, and ample size will have you covered, no matter what type of yoga you practice.
You don’t need to spend a lot to get started with yoga: Our budget choice (for five years running) costs well under half what our other picks do and has held up remarkably well in long-term testing. We have guidelines for all-rubber and non-rubber, latex-free mats, too. Remember traveling? Our travel mat pick folds to fit comfortably in a suitcase.
$80 from Lululemon Lululemon’s The Reversible Mat 5mm scored high marks on all nine attributes our professional testers rated, including stickiness, weight, thickness, durability, and overall feel. Lululemon’s mat has two sides: a smooth, “sticky” polyurethane side that lets your hands and feet adhere to the mat, and a spongy, natural rubber “grippy” side that instead provides traction via a textured surface.
This lets you dial in how much traction you need, whether you are doing hot yoga or restorative yoga, or are just someone who could sweat a lot. The 5-millimeter-thick natural rubber is supportive, so delicate knees and elbows won’t sink through to the floor. It’s slightly oversize 3 inches longer and 2 inches wider than a regular mat which gives you some breathing room but doesn’t take up loads of space in a crowded class.
If you need any more real estate, the Reversible (Big) Mat is literally the size of a door. These mats are on the heavy side, and the surface appears to show dust, dirt, and smudges that are hard to clean, but overall quibbles are small.
Gaiam Performance Dry-Grip Yoga Mat
. It is made of polyvinyl chloride (PVC) and has adequate cushioning and firm support that pleased our joints and grounded our standing poses. The smooth top layer, meant to wick away moisture, kept our hands and feet locked in place while allowing freedom for transitions during a flow. The mat is comparatively small at 4¼ pounds, about a pound lighter than our top pick a factor if you wear your mat frequently.
Tribal Native Cork Yoga Mat by Yoloha (From $169)
Merging two recycled fabrics, cork and rubber, the Tribal Native Cork Yoga Mat is not only magically grippy, but also eco-friendly. Weighing in at less than most mats of this caliber, this mat features an uber non-slip surface, optimal longevity, and natural, antimicrobial properties.ing grip and traction that increases as you sweat, plus high absorbency and alignment reference points in beautiful geometric designs, this cork yoga mat is as high quality as it is high performance.
Yoloha has done it again with this mat featuring a firm top and fluffy foam bottom to establish unprecedented comfort and simultaneous stability. Gripping much better when wet, this mat is perfect for all your hot yoga needs.
Lululemon The Interchangeable Pad 5mm
aced our test for its outstanding versatility. The mat has two sides a “sticky” side and “grippy” side. Sticky means it actually sticks; grippy refers to traction, produced by a texture. We’d love to tell you which to pick, but this is an eternal debate in yoga, and is focused on how you practice hot or not, sweaty or dry and what feels best against your body.
The sticky side is made of smooth polyurethane and has a lot of traction, even in the really sweaty conditions of a hot-yoga class; our teacher said it was one of the only mats that didn’t need her to put down a towel until things got very drippy. The opposite “grippy” side is made of rubber and given just as much traction, no matter the moisture conditions.
Having the right padding in a yoga mat is a tricky combination. If it’s too squishy, pointy joints can sink too far into it, and balancing on the surface becomes difficult because too much support is lost to the compression. Then again, if it’s too firm, you might as well practice directly on the floor.
With a few exceptions, 5 millimeters (about ¼ inch) is fairly common for yoga mats, and that’s exactly how padded the Lululemon mat is. The dual-material makeup does the job well, but we considered the rubber side to be much kinder to the knees.
The Lululemon mat often comes in two sizes to suit various body shapes and tastes. Most people would be more than pleased with the usual 71-by-26-inch mat, which is 3 inches larger and 2 inches wider than a standard mat. It has enough space to hold you in its confines during a vigorous flow.
The Large version is a monster: It measures 84 inches (that’s 7 feet) long and 28 inches wide, which prompted one of Amy’s trainer friends a 6-foot-2, 350-pound bodybuilder to light up with glee and remark, “That’s the size of a door! ” Lululemon makes two lighter-weight versions of the Reversible Mat:
The Reversible Mat 3mm and the Reversible (Un) Mat (1.5 mm) for travel, both of which have the same extra-grippy surface area and dimensions (71 by 26 inches) as the regular mat. Both are easier to wear, rolled up, to class the trade-off being reduced cushioning. The company does sell a foldable travel mat, the Carry Onwards , which is 2 millimeters thick and not as solid as our pick for travel mats In most editorial reviews, Lululemon’s mat gets high marks.
Outside magazine also gives it top honors, pointing to its well-roundedness and calling it the “All-Around MVP.” Yoga Journal’s review also cites its cushioning and stickiness as top attributes.
It continues to perform. One long-term tester, who has owned the mat for two years, appreciates its cushiony texture, which is always dense enough to make her feel “rooted.” Its surfaces deserve praise, too: “Grip is my main priority, as I sweat a lot, and this mat stays grippy even as I drip sweat from my forehead.”
JadeYoga Harmony Mat
has the products. Rubber is very grippy! The surface texture feels like a million tiny suction cups that glue to your skin at any contact point, which is especially awesome when attempting to maintain some form of balance-heavy pose you certainly aren’t going to drop it because your foot or hand slipped. In reality, we often found pivoting movements, say, from a high lunge to a Warrior 2, a bit of a challenge because of all the friction!
It also comes in four sizes. Just bear in mind that the bigger you go in area, the heavier the mat is to carry: The smallest is a fair 4½ pounds, and the largest is a getting-awkward 6½ pounds.
offered excellent stability and didn’t slip or move on the floor during our session. At just 1/16 inch (about 1.6 millimeters) thick, the Voyager doesn’t offer much padding compared with our cushier picks. But the lack of cushioning also makes it easy to fold up and stash in either a backpack or carry-on suitcase.
Unfurled, the Voyager offers a complete 68-by-24-inch natural-rubber practice area the same as a regular mat (though smaller than the Lululemon The Reversible Mat) (though smaller than the Lululemon The Reversible Mat). It’s as grippy under hand and foot as the Harmony , also made by JadeYoga (though not as grippy as our top pick from Lululemon ).
(though not as grippy as our top pick from Lululemon ). It also didn’t move, fall, or bunch up on the floor during our testing, unlike some of its competitors. At just 1½ pound, it’s also among the lightest mats we reviewed and is considerably lighter than any of our other picks. If you want more squish, you can put it on a carpet or atop a rental mat at the studio; we found that it didn’t slip on those surfaces any more than on a hard floor.
Both of our yoga instructors praised the Voyager highly for its portability and traction, picking it as either their favorite or second-favorite travel pad. Depending on the type of yoga you practice or your interests, however, you might need to make a few changes. Our hot yoga teacher noticed that the rubber was almost too grippy and somewhat gritty on her skin and she had to put down a towel to absorb sweat near the end of class. Still, she chose it over most of the travel rivals, which could become slippery during a heated session.
What to Remember While Looking for a Yoga Mat
A nonslip yoga mat will help you get a better handle on your practice, and there are a few things to keep in mind while you’re looking for the right one for you. The material is going to be the number one factor in holding you in place, since it defines the texture, stickiness, and sponginess of the pad.
Yoga mats made of vinyl, or PVC, have more give; mats made from natural and recycled rubber or other organic materials have less. A mat with bumps or some other kind of texture will be grippier, but if you prefer a smoother surface, look for one with moisture regulation. And the thinner the mat, the more grounded to the floor you’ll feel; the thicker it is, the more of a balance challenge it might pose.
But keep in mind that some slippage is natural, and often means that you’re getting stronger, says Tessa Jenkins , RYT 500, training director for Bulldog Yoga Studio and Bulldog Online . “Muscles are firing in new ways and often become fatigued quite fast, which can lead to slipping,” she explains.
“While advanced yogis can definitely slip, what I’ve seen is that with time, practice, and patience, for many yogis, slipping decreases as strength increases.” If you’re super sweaty to begin with, Jenkins suggests putting an absorbent yoga towel over your mat to prevent you from sliding around.
Best No-Slip Grip: IUGA Pro Non-Slip Yoga Mat
Buy on Amazon No chemical scent or harsh odor Easy to tote around Excellent non-slip surface Edges stay slightly curled after unrolling Stains more quickly than other choices While most rubber yoga mats can be a pain to lug around, the IUGA Pro mat weights just 2.5 pounds while still offering 5-millimeter-thick cushioning.
Made from sustainably harvested tree rubber, the eco-friendly yoga mat is both PVC-free and latex-free, and it doesn’t have the nasty chemical odor that many other mats do.
The mat’s polyurethane top layer offers excellent traction and grip along with sweat absorption for a slip-free yoga session . Meanwhile, the textured bottom adheres to every surface, keeping you protected and secured. The IUGA Pro Non-Slip Yoga Mat features a carrying harness and comes in five fun and classic
Although all the mats on this list are good choices, there’s a few that are perfect as non-slip yoga mats. Our favorites are:
Heathyoga Eco-Friendly Non-Slip Yoga Mat
Both of these mats have a stable, non-slip grip for all dry types of yoga and both should work in mild sweat conditions (although the para rubber would work better in moderate sweat) (although the para rubber would work best in moderate sweat).
The Para Rubber excels if you’re a moderate sweater and under around 6′ tall because its a stickier, open celled mat. Its also made from a denser material (natural rubber) so if you need a little extra cushioning for your joints you might want to consider having this one.
If you need a bigger pad, the Heathyoga mat is longer and wider giving you with extra real estate. Its not quite as thick as a natural rubber but still offers plenty of cushioning in a more lightweight box. It’s textured surface is non-slip and works well in all forms of dry yoga.