If You Are Wondering About How To Wash Yoga Mats In The Washer? Then This Article Is For You.
Here, We Take You Through The Simple Step By Step Process To Help Understand How To Wash Your Yoga Mat In Your Washer. Stay Tuned.
- 1. Keep Clean To Keep The Mat Clean
- 2. Wipe The Mat With Wipes Or Soap After Use
- 3. Use A Yoga Towel On The Mat
Why do You need To Wash Your Yoga Mat?
Yoga mats are a prop that will get dirty, icky, stinky and sweaty with regular use and over a period of time. A dirty and stinky yoga mat always disrupts the meditative calming benefits of yoga and does not leave you with very pleasant yoga experience.
And so it is extremely important that you know exactly when to clean your yoga mat because washing it too often could even destroy it.
Here, we are going to let you into the process of cleaning a yoga mat in a washer and also share a few tips on how to maintain it on a regular basis.
While sweat, odor dust, and dirt can be cleaned with just a few wipes of the yoga mat, but there is harsher dirt like skin and product oils that tend to penetrate the surface of the mat and destroy it preventing a firm grip of your feet on the mat.
So, to increase the shelf life of your yoga mat and for slip-free yoga practice, it is absolutely essential to give it a wash (just only at the right time) and keep up with the daily maintenance.
So, if your yoga mat is machine washable (look for the care label) then that makes your task simpler. Follow this process and you’ll find the right way to clean your yoga mat in the washer.
Steps To Wash Yoga Mats In The Washer
The first step to wash a yoga mat is to understand when exactly it should be done. If you are using it on a daily basis then it must be washed after every two months.
But, if you’re not using it regularly or daily it is even more important that you wash it more often to maintain the longevity of your yoga mat. Then again, during the hot weather season when you get all the more sweaty and stinky, cleaning your yoga mat every month is an absolute necessity.
So, be aware of the soils and stains on your mat which will help you know that this is the exact time that your mat needs to get washed thoroughly.
On the other hand, if you see your yoga mat is peeling and sticking to your clothes, then it is time for you to consider buying a new one- it does not require any wash anymore, it requires to be thrown out.
Once you know that your yoga mat needs to be washed, these are the steps that you follow:
Simple 4 Step Process
1. Soaking the Mat
For soaking your yoga mat you’ll need a solution of warm water and a mild detergent- may be liquid dish soap. Dish soaps are preferred over normal detergents because they are hypoallergenic in nature and serve perfectly as mild cleaners for your yoga mat.
However, make sure not to use too much of it but just enough to clean off the dirt. Using too much detergent will only leave your mat to be slippery which in turn will make practicing yoga on it very difficult.
So, the exact ratio of the solution should be that you mix 15 ml (one tablespoon) of detergent to every 3.7 l (one gallon) of lukewarm tap water. Once the solution is ready, all you have to do is submerge the mat in the solution which will loosen the dirt and the oil from the mat.
Some even suggest that vinegar acts well as an alternative to clean your yoga mat. However, that can leave behind an unpleasant smell which will prevent your practice from being enjoyable.
Also, vinegar acts as a strong acid which may lead to deterioration of your mat. So keeping all of this in mind, go ahead with its soaking process.
2. Cleaning the Mat
If your mat is not machine washable, then the only way you can clean your mat is by hand washing.
Once you have soaked your mat for some time (5-7 minutes) wipe each side thoroughly but gently with a soft cloth. The areas which touch your hand and feet frequently require cleaning specifically.
That can be understood because the mat usually discolors in those areas. Wipe gently so as not to destroy the mat. It is absolutely normal not to see bubbles from the water and soap solution because you are using just the right amount to clean it and not make it slippery.
Make sure not to put your mat in the machine or the washer unless the care label specifically mentions so.
Also, do not forget to read our post on Yoga Wheels
3. Rinsing the Mat
Once you are satisfied with the wiping, submerge the yoga mat in clean water and rinse it well. Rinsing it properly is essential because even a small amount of soap as residue on the mat can make it slippery and that is something we DO NOT want under any circumstances.
Rinse it till you see that the water is absolutely clear and if it isn’t considered wiping it with a soft cloth under the running water.
4. Drying the Mat
Drying your yoga mat again requires a specific process. Wringing your mat to remove the excess water is not at all a good idea as that can end up wrinkling, tearing or warping the mat.
So, the best way to remove the excess water is to shake your mat and lay it flat on a dry towel and then rolling them together so that the towel absorbs the excess and the remaining water from the mat.
You can even step on the rolled-up mat to squeeze out the water. Once the excess water is removed, unroll the mat and hang dry it using pant hangers on a laundry drying rack and let it air dry on both sides thoroughly.
Avoid putting the mat in a dryer as it may destroy your mat, your dryer or even may even cause a fire. However, before using the mat once again make sure that it is completely dry.
Also, read our post on Best Yoga Mats For Beginners
A Video on How To Wash Yoga Mats in the Washer
Hope by now you are clear on How To Wash Yoga Mats in the Washer. Now we want to take a it a step further and tell you how to maintain it thereafter.
Also read our popular post on How To Store Yoga Mats.
Steps To Maintain Your Yoga Mat
It is absolutely essential and necessary that you clean your yoga mat regularly. Oil, dirt, and dust tend to degrade the purpose of your mat by making practice more difficult.
So, a few simple processes will always help you to extend its shelf life and not having you wash it too frequently. If you are using the yoga mat on a daily basis, the primary step is to clean it off after every use and store it properly.
1. Keep Clean To Keep The Mat Clean
Before you start using the yoga mat, make sure that you clean your hand and feet properly because these are the parts of your body that will be in constant touch with the mat.
This will not only keep your mat well but also prevent bacteria from spreading between your skin and the mat. Lotions and cream also tend to degrade the quality of your mat and to avoid that it is important that you clean your skin before stepping on it.
In case you do not have a situation where you can clean your hands and feet, you may even choose to use baby wipes to wipe off your palms and soles.
Also read our post on What Are Yoga Mats Made Of?
2. Wipe The Mat With Wipes Or Soap After Use
Once you are done with practice on your mat, make it a habit that you wipe off the mat with a soft cloth and a mild soap, or even use baby wipes. Roll it up and store it in its place only after it has dried off.
Never overdo with the soap as this may end up leaving your mat slippery making it unable to be used the next time. The baby wipes that are used to clean yoga mats are not the regular ones that we use for our skin- they are much gentler.
They are specially made for cleaning yoga props and these are available at any sports store, online or yoga specialty shops.
3. Use A Yoga Towel On The Mat
Always use a yoga towel on the mat during practice. This will prevent the sweat, moisture, and stink from getting absorbed into the mat.
This will also help you with a better grip during practice as yoga towels are super absorbent towels with special grips and thus preventing you from slipping all over it.
Another mistake that people often make is just rolling it up and storing it after use. Ideally, to maintain a yoga mat one should allow the mat to air dry after use.
This will keep your mat smelling fresh by evaporating all the moisture and sweat and prevent your mat from any kind of bacteria or fungi breed.
Also, read our post on Best Yoga Mats For Toddlers
Maintaining or cleaning your yoga mat is easy but not simple. We all want our yoga props to last us long and to do that it is necessary that we put in some effort.
So, keeping all the factors in mind- the material of the yoga mat, the season, the intensity and the frequency of your sessions- we should give our yoga mats a regular wash. In case your yoga mat is machine washable, always put it on a gentle cycle in cold water, but never put it in the dryer.
No matter which washes you carry out- whether hand washes or machine wash- make sure that it is rinsed well and air-dried and you are good to go for a couple of months straight.
Do not forget to read our most popular article on Best Yoga Mats, where we talk about 16 mats that are the best for different user, usage and budget specifications.