It is a dichotomy that yoga has exploded in popularity, and stayed dominant, given that it is a Zen-oriented practice, and essentially the opposite of big business. But those who do yoga need yoga mats, and we’re here to help yogis and their students and followers buy the perfect earth friendly yoga mats for better health. For your well-being and the planet’s, too.
In general, the mats we like best are free of chemicals, have an excellent non-slip feature, are comfortable and a good thickness, do not contribute to pollution or harm the environment, are manufactured by conscientious companies using sustainable materials, are reasonably priced (we don’t mean cheap, we mean value for money spent), and the good-citizen profile of the manufacturers (no sweat shops).
If you check this “27 Eco Friendly Yoga Mats” blog post, you’ll be able to read about all of the 27 yoga mats Ecobou reviewed, but these top 9 will help you shop for your personal earth friendly yoga mat in a jiffy!
Finally, our top 9 eco friendly yoga mats are readily accessible, either in bricks-and-mortar stores or on-line, and are in stock; in some cases when one mat — for example a blue one — is not in stock and can be substituted for a similar colour, we regard that as being “in stock”.
Here, then, is our list of the top 9 earth friendly yoga mats in descending order:
- Manduka. This is our top pick because it meets most of our criteria, with one question; we’re not sure what sort of manufacturing facility is run in Taiwan. The mats are good quality, reasonably priced, and 99% latex-free. What we love is that they are biodegradable and the natural tree rubber is not sourced from the Amazon forest. Big points for that. Check them out at www.manduka.com and we’re sure you’ll find the grip, in particular, excellent and therefore safe.
- SugaMats. This one meets Ecobou’s must-haves in an earth friendly yoga mat, plus they get a big thumb’s up for originality and creativity. Available at www.sugamats.com these yoga mats are made from recycled wet suits. They’re priced very fairly, are thick at 5mm, and because they’re rubber, the grip is terrific. Limited colour selection, but who doesn’t look good in or on black!
- Yoga Design Lab. Cork may be a little iffy because it’s not all that abundant these days; the need has resulted in mass plantings of new cork trees. Why this one works is that it is a mix of biodegradable cork and natural rubber, so you have good grip and an antimicrobial surface. Visit www.yogadesignlab.com to see the beautifully rendered, water-based ink designs. A little higher in price than some other eco friendly yoga mats, but worth it.
- Wild Hemp Yoga Mat. We believe that hemp is the future of materials. In the case of this company, not only are they using the most tried and true, sustainable, natural material, they take super-good care of their workers. While they are handmade in Nepal, they can be sourced at www.theproudlondon.co.uk/products/wild-hemp-yoga-mat-bag-natural where you will find a price point in the upper register, but the craftsmanship and natural hemp and organic cotton align with the cost.
- Gaiam. Check them out at www.gaiam.com and you will find a range of eco friendly yoga mats, from 3mm to 8mm thick, latex-free, and manufactured from jute. These mats absorb moisture effectively and have a rubber surface to aid in safe grip. Gaiam suggest that new mats be aired outdoors for a few days. Good tip!
- Jade Yoga – Fusion & Harmony. This is one of the favoured eco friendly yoga mats for fans of pilates; the mats are very cushiony and comfortable at 8mm thick, and are available at www.jadeyoga.com in regular and longer lengths. A good corporate citizen, Gaiam has donated 2,000,000 trees to Trees of the Future. For those with sensitivities and allergies, the Gaiam mays are 99& latex-free. A little costly, but trees matter.
- Lottus Life. Made from 100% natural responsibly sourced jute, mats from www.lottuslife.com are reasonably priced, cushy at 8mm thick, latex-free and easy to clean. To boot, they are biodegradable and recyclable. Want more in a mat? The company donates part of its profits to the clean water organization, Karma Project.
- Muktimat eco-friendly yoga mat is part of a newer Australian company and can be found at www.createflow.co and the name of the mat is spelled Muktimat or Mukti Mat, so take that into account on your internet search. Made from natural tree rubber (the grip side) and jute (the body side), this is a budget-priced eco friendly yoga mat and is shipped using zero plastic packaging, a definite plus!
- Lululemon eco-friendly yoga mats; we had to include them, and not just because they are a famous brand. They cost significantly more than other brands, but they claim, “…we have always and will continue to price our products based on a commitment to the value of fit, functionality, premium materials and detail, craftsmanship and technology.” It does sound a little like marketing-speak, but hundreds of thousands of consumers swear by Lululemon apparel and accessories; that many happy people can’t be wrong! Visit www.lululemon.com and browse the large selection of earth friendly yoga mats, understanding you’ll part with more money, but have a long-lasting, top-quality product.
You’re welcome! That’s our mission: to help you make eco friendly choices for all aspects of your sustainable lifestyle.
Halen M. blogger at Ecobou.com.