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If you want to know how to clean your yoga mat and make your own organic yoga mat cleaner, this post is for you!
Why is it important to clean our yoga mats?
Yoga practice can be hard work, and while we reach new heights through sweat (and sometimes tears), the yoga mats really take a hit when it comes to cleanliness. Some of us attend a yoga class after a long day at work, some practice at the end of a gym session. Either way, by the time we make it onto our mat, we will have shaken plenty of hands, picked up a few germs along the way, and gathered some city dust on our skin. All that mixed with sweat stays on our mats as we flow from asana to asana, creating a perfect breeding ground for bacteria. And when we roll up the mat at the end of a yoga session, the bottom side of the mat touches the top part, transferring any dirt and dust from the floor onto the rest of the mat.
Why make your own yoga mat cleaner?
Take control – The main and most important reason to put together your own cleaning product is that you know exactly what ingredients are being used. Not only can you select the highest quality products to be used in your solution, you can personally check their origin and ethical practices of manufacturing companies.
Tailor it to your preferences – Another great reason to create your own yoga mat cleaning solution is because it is perfectly customisable! You can choose your favorite aromas to accompany your yoga practice.
Waste not want not – You can make the batch as little or as vast as you like. You might scale the recipe down for a small bottle, portable enough to take in your carry on when you go on holiday. If you are someone who is likely to use a larger quantity of mat cleaning products (e.g. if you own a yoga studio or run a yoga retreat), you could adjust the recipe to create a bigger batch.
Help the environment – Not only are you reducing your environmental impact by reusing the same spray bottle, but since the main ingredient of any DIY yoga mat cleaner is water, the rest of the ingredients will go a long way.
Save Money – Buying the first bulk of ingredients may seem like a serious investment, but once you consider how much money you will save long term, it’s a no-brainer. Plus, you can use the same ingredients to create an all-purpose cleaner that will leave your home smelling fresh and looking sparkling!
Key Organic Ingredients (including Essential Oils)
Not to be confused with white wine vinegar, white vinegar is a great staple to have in your cleaning cupboard. It’s made through the natural fermentation of sugar cane extract or by combining acetic acid with water. High concentration of acetic acid makes it suitable for disinfecting, as well as removing stains, deodorising or even unclogging drains. It has quite a sharp acidic smell, even when diluted with water, so you may need to increase the amount of essential oil you are using in your recipe.
Witch hazel extract is a natural compound that has antiseptic, antibacterial and antiviral properties, which makes it great for killing existing germs and reducing the future build up of bacteria. Witch hazel is also a well known remedy for inflammation and skin irritation, which makes it a perfect option for those who have sensitive skin.
Apple cider vinegar has a bit of a legendary status – it’s used for anything from haircare and skin exfoliation to reducing cholesterol and assisting weight loss. However, it’s lesser known talent is its ability to clean and disinfect just about anything. When it comes to cleaning your mat, apple cider vinegar has an additional advantage of keeping the yoga mat sticky and removing the dark patches left by your hands and feet.
Oregano oil is one of the most powerful antibacterial essential oils. It contains carvacrol and thymol, two strong antimicrobial agents that stifle the growth of bacteria and various fungi.
In a homemade yoga mat cleaner, tea tree oil acts as a natural sanitizer, as well as being included for its capacity to soothe the skin. Tea tree oil also makes a wonderful chemical free deodorant, as it contains compounds that fight bacteria responsible for body odour, which will leave your yoga mat smelling great even after the most exhausting yoga sessions.
The reason lemongrass essential oil is on this list is because it contains citral as one of its main components. Citral has strong antimicrobial properties which makes lemongrass oil great for suppressing and even stopping the growth of microorganisms, including bacteria and fungi. As an added bonus, it brings a wonderful citrus smell to the mix.
If you clean your yoga mat before your practice, eucalyptus oil vapours act as a decongestant, which could be helpful for clearing your sinuses and allowing you to keep the breaths steady all through the yoga session.
In essential oil practices, lavender oil is said to promote relaxation, which goes hand in hand with yoga practice. In terms of its practical uses, lavender oil has antibacterial properties which aid the process of cleaning and disinfecting your yoga mat, as well as infusing your DIY mat cleaner with a fantastic smell.
What Can You Use to Clean A Yoga Mat?
The basic formula to create your own DIY Yoga Mat Spray is a 3:1 ratio of filtered water to a natural, organic cleaning agent and then adding a few drops of your favourite essential oils for an awesome natural scent! You add the ingredients into a glass spray bottle and you have an inexpensive spray that smells great and will help save the environment too! Here are a few recipes to get you started:
Recipe One: lemongrass & tea tree oil
- 1 part witch hazel
- 3 parts filtered water
- 2 drops lemongrass oil
- 1 drop tea tree oil
Recipe Two: eucalyptus/lavender/peppermint
- 1 part white vinegar
- 3 parts filtered water
- 2 drops lavender oil
- 1 drop eucalyptus oil
- 1 drop peppermint oil
Recipe Three: oregano/lavender/sweet orange
- 1 part apple cider vinegar
- 1 part filtered water
- 1 drop oregano oil
- 1 drop lavender oil
- 1 drop sweet orange oil
How to clean a yoga mat using your homemade spray?
- Spray your yoga mat with the spray you made using the above recipes.
- Wipe with an antibacterial cloth.
- Let your mat air dry before you use it, or put it away.
Note: If you have allergies, skin conditions or asthma, please do not use any ingredients that can cause a negative reaction. All rights reserved on above recipes.