Top 9 sustainable and non-toxic yoga mats – the ultimate guide

Did you know that the material of your yoga mat can affect your breathing? One of the important parts of yoga practice is proper breathing. Most yoga mats on the market are made of PVC plastic, which has health and environmental implications, considering that PVC is a toxic material as it contains lead and other heavy metals that make it more stable. When buried or burned, it releases a carcinogenic substance called dioxin.

1. HZCORK Cork Yoga Mat

The biggest concern for many people when using a new mat is the smell. Cork yoga mats are virtually odorless, which is why many people feel better about them.

It would be an exaggeration to say that it has no smell at all, after all the surface still gives off a faint woody scent of cork, but it is not at all harsh and is acceptable to most people.

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The bark is harvested once every 10-20 years, which is environmentally friendly. Cork is also very flexible, airtight, and resistant to friction, as well as being non-toxic, odorless, and soft to the touch, making it very versatile.

Cork has a small specific gravity and feels as good as PU and natural rubber; it has a plain appearance but is non-slip and wear-resistant, so even if it gets wet, it will not affect practice. It is also less smelly than TPE or natural rubber, which takes time to dissipate, making it really environmentally friendly and healthy.

cork yoga mat

This yoga mat is made from Portuguese cork and combined with natural rubber, the finished product is in line with the yogis’ pursuit of a back-to-basic look, rustic and natural.

Cork is a natural and environmentally friendly material with a soft and resilient texture. Doing yoga on a cork mat is like being in the middle of nature, touching the warm and unique texture, which is also conducive to physical and mental relaxation.

According to many yogis: it’s like having no yoga mat at all.

2. Gaiam Jute Yoga Mat

Gaiam jute yoga mat is made from eco-friendly jute fibre, a natural plant that takes only 45 months to mature. Jute purifies the air by consuming carbon dioxide and the leaves are a natural amendment for the soil. This yoga mat is natural, environmentally friendly, safe, and non-toxic. The unique look of this mat is made by combining jute fibres with the patented PER, which is phthalate-free and safer for workers during the production process.

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Gaiam jute yoga mats are sweat-resistant and antibacterial. Jute has an extra antibacterial effect for those sweaty exercises and is a super favorite among advanced yogis. bikram yoga, Iyengar yoga, Vinyasa yoga, Ashtanga yoga, prenatal yoga. This yoga mat is suitable for strenuous and sweaty workouts. It can also be used for Pilates and free weights. The yoga mat is textured to provide a better grip on the ground. Allows you to stand more firmly and without slipping.

3. Abhineh organic cotton yoga mats

Abhineh organic cotton yoga mats are hand-woven from organic cotton and coloured with natural herbal and vegetable dyes. Available in 5 different colours, all using different herbs or plants as dyes. Blue is made from indigo, black from black ebony called karungali kattai, yellow from turmeric, green from a plant called tulasi and grey from cumin.

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Hand-woven in three days from all-natural cotton fibres, these sturdy organic cotton yoga mats are durable and exude superb craftsmanship. With anti-odour, they are also non-slip.

4.Suga wetsuit yoga mat

Suga recycles wetsuits into yoga mats, hence the name combining “surf” and “yoga”. So far, 12,500 wetsuits have been diverted from landfills. Only the mats are now made of recycled material, but they are also recyclable. When you have finished with your old mat, you can send it back to Suga to make a new one.

The mat is very supportive and has the right amount of softness and sturdiness. So far, it also seems to be very durable. The neutral design is also a plus. However, the regular Suga mats are heavy and therefore more suitable for home practice.

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As Suga mats are made from neoprene they are a unique closed-cell foam, which means they do not absorb bacteria, sweat, dust and dirt from the yoga studio floor like other mats do. So for those of you who are quickly running out of wetsuits, you now have a new place to drop off or send your old neoprene so they don’t end up in a landfill.

5. Green Earth Wool Yoga Mat

The Green Earth wool yoga mat is made from wool, cotton, linen fibres and natural rubber. The top layer is made of 100% kbT wool from New Zealand and the bottom layer consists of a non-slip coating made of linen and natural latex. As a result, this mat offers grip and a natural feel with a more absorbent top and more texture than the cotton surface of Green Earth’s other yoga mat products.

The Green Earth Wool Yoga Mat with Lavender offers the added benefit of relaxing lavender flowers scattered around the edges. For anyone using the mat at home for a more relaxing yoga or meditation session, the lavender scent could be a real boon. However, if you intend to use the mat in a classroom environment, please consider using the unscented .

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6.Hugger Mugger Eco-friendly TPE Yoga Mat

The Hugger Mugger brand of yoga mats stands out for being biodegradable, non-toxic and recyclable. The company prides itself on being one of the first to manufacture sustainable yoga mats using thermoplastic elastomers (TPE), a material that can be recycled after use. It is a trusted brand to which many yogis have returned over the years.

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Because it’s made from 100% natural rubber from non-Amazonian sources, it’s comfortable and grippy, and very durable. However, it is a little small in size, which can be a problem for taller people and those who practice more extensively.

7. Darbha Grass Fibre Yoga Mat

Darbha (Desmotachya bipinnata) is a tropical grass that is considered a sacred material in the Vedic classics and is said to purify offerings in such rituals. These grass mats are also used for meditation, as they are said to provide positive energy.

This yoga mat is non-slip and offers good support. It’s not as soft and flexible as a normal PVC mat though, so if you have a sensitive spine, knees or wrists I would recommend using it on a carpeted floor or adding extra padding. The grass fibres are finer than plastic and high intensity HIIT workouts are not recommended on this mat.

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8. Asana 100% Organic Hemp Yoga Mat

A 100% organically grown hemp yoga surface double mat. Use alone on a non-slip floor or over a natural rubber yoga mat to protect your skin.
The unique double-sided hemp yoga mat (ribbed hemp knit on one side for friction and smooth hemp weave on the other) folds to cushion hips in seated positions and knees in kneeling positions. We also fold our hemp yoga mats for meditation.

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All elements of this sturdy cork building can be disassembled at the end of its useful life and the individual components are either fully biodegradable or recyclable.
The cork studio was constructed using waste pellets from a wine cork manufacturer.
These pellets are turned into solid blocks through a heating process, which triggers them to expand and release a natural resin that binds them together. After this, the blocks are cut to the required board size and joined on site.

9. Eko Lite natural rubber yoga mat

Manduka‘s grippy, supportive and durable Eko Lite mat, which is made from natural rubber that is not harvested from the Amazon forest. It took yoga teachers four years to design this beautifully textured mat that is 99% latex free, zero waste, chemical free and contains no PVC. the Eko Lite is a multi-purpose sealed battery mat that does not absorb moisture.
Whether it’s hot yoga or vinyasa, you can easily make the transition without slipping. It weighs 5 lbs, is 71″ long and 0.15″ thick and comes in gorgeous marble tones and solid shades.

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Natural cork also has a very high insulation value, which makes it ideal for use as cladding. This choice of material contributes significantly to the energy efficiency and sustainability of the building.
The facade panels of Cork Screw House are made by a sustainable process of heating and pressing waste cork pellets, which were acquired from a wine bottling company.
Heating the cork causes it to release a natural resin that binds its pellets together to form a lightweight, durable slab that can be cut to the required size.

Why choose an eco-friendly yoga mat?

One of the main objectives of practising yoga is to feel a sense of centre. The choice of mat can affect this feeling.
A mat made of natural materials allows energy to flow from head to toe, thus stabilising the pose. Rubber and plastic act as insulators and inhibit flow, effectively stopping it.

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The type of yoga mat you choose is important; the right material will maximise your performance and create an overall experience that promotes the highest levels of physical, mental and spiritual well-being. It is more than just a yoga accessory, it is a tool that will become your constant partner in becoming better.
Practising yoga on an eco-friendly mat is a decision that impacts your lifestyle, making you more aware of choosing happiness, kindness, non-violence, sustainability and compassion. Essentially, it is your first step towards a better world and earthly existence. Make the best choice for you and the environment.

There is no doubt about the pursuit of sustained economic growth and its significant impact on our environment and society. Globally, awareness of the need for sustainable development is growing and the principles of sustainable development are entering national and international policies. As the population continues to grow and we all seek to improve our environment, creating significant additional demands on resources, sustainability becomes a key focus of any and all design more important and necessary than ever.

Based on the many outstanding properties of cork, the cork can be made into cork fabrics, cork sports products, cork bags, etc., which are considered one of the best alternatives to leather.

Choose the right cork products to promote your low carbon sustainable project.

Natural Cork Leather

Colored Cokr Fabric

Cork Yoga Products

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The cORK

Cork is mainly made from the bark of the cork oak (Quercus Suber) which is grown in sunny and warm countries like Spain, Portugal, Italy, France, Algeria, Morocco and Tunisia. Globally speaking, Portugal is the biggest producer of cork.

The cork is harvested by removing the bark of the tree. The extraction method is 100% safe for the tree, which is not cut, and its surface doesn’t suffer any type of damage. Harvest is made in cycles every 9 to 10 years. The cork tree must be approximately 25 years old before the first extraction (virgin cork) and then nine years shall be necessary for following harvests. Fortunately, the cork tree lives for 180/200 years which allows 15/20 extractions.

cork fabric has exceptional characteristics, which make it perfect to do bags,wallets,upholestery wallpaper and flooring.

Soft, warm surface
Sound and heat insulation
Very good indoor environment conditions thanks to antibacterial and dust-repellent surface qualities and excellent moisture control – particularly suited for people with allergies
Robust, even when it comes to minor damages as they will hardly be visible within the natural structure of the material
Easy to clean (dry)
Light-resistant

Cork forest
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