What's your favorite nonslip yoga mat that doesn't cost the earth?
March 4, 2014 10:35 AM   Subscribe

Help me upgrade my yoga mat to something that is truly non slip.

My cheap yoga mat + nonslip yoga towel isn't working for me anymore, and I have yet to find any solution that keeps my hands and feet from skidding in downward dog once I start to sweat.

My teacher swears by her $100 mat, but (infuriatingly) she doesn't sweat. So I'm looking for personal recommendations from other sweaty yoga people so I don't end up with an expensive version of the same slippery mat problem I have now.

What's your favorite nonslip yoga mat, and how do you maintain it so it stays that way? Bonus points if it doesn't cost the earth, and is available online. Thanks!
posted by Space Kitty to Shopping (17 answers total) 15 users marked this as a favorite
Have you considered a few pairs of yoga socks and yoga gloves? The only places I sweat are my palms and feet, and socks and gloves are the only thing that work for me.
posted by fontophilic at 10:38 AM on March 4, 2014

I am a sweaty lady, and I love the Jade Harmony mats. Depending on color, they cost $60-$80, but I swear to you, they're worth it.

They're made of rubber, so don't leave them in a hot car. Word on the street is that they do wear out if you're a frequent yoga-er (I'm not that frequent), but I slipped all over my cheap crappy mat for years. This thing is a revelation.
posted by purpleclover at 10:40 AM on March 4, 2014 [1 favorite]

I get very sweaty (I glisten), and Jade is my favorite, too. If it starts to get less sticky and grippy, just clean it really well (only needed very rarely in my experience). Some people think Jade's are TOO grippy.

If you don't want to splurge, one thing that helps is cleaning a cheap mat with apple cider vinegar. Mix the vinegar in a bowl with 1/2 water, and then wipe the map down with a very wet washcloth - then wipe with fresh water and hang to dry. You'll get the most benefit the first time when you wash off the slick film it came with when you bought it (if you haven't done that before).

I have washed my Jade similarly once since I bought it, about a year in (after 2-3x weekly sweaty use).
posted by amaire at 10:54 AM on March 4, 2014

I love my Auroroae mat - for super intense classes I will sometimes throw a towel on top, but I find even when I'm sweating a lot I don't usually need the additional layer.
posted by DuckGirl at 11:08 AM on March 4, 2014

Response by poster: I'm totally gonna try the apple cider vinegar trick. I've looked at the Jade mats, but there seem to be a lot of complaints about them retaining a rubber smell? Has anyone tried Manduka? They get the best reviews but are SO expensive.
posted by Space Kitty at 11:10 AM on March 4, 2014

Hmm...yeah, maybe it's a little rubbery when you get down and press your nose against it, but nothing I've noticed much. Smell one in the shop before you buy (or smell one of the loaners at your studio) to see if it bothers you.
posted by amaire at 11:27 AM on March 4, 2014

I have a Manduka and it's awesome and does not slip. I've had no problems with it - even those times where I have sweaty, lotion-y legs. It is expensive though. I think it's worth the price as it will last for a very long time.
posted by valeries at 11:45 AM on March 4, 2014 [1 favorite]

I just started doing bikram yoga and got myself this mat Yogitoes Skidless Premium Mat-Size Yoga Towel .

In addition to that, I got this towel to go on top of it - YogaRat 100% Microfiber HOT YOGA TOWELS

I (dude, 30) sweat like nobody's business and I've not had any issues with the slipping or the mat getting wet.

I also always dump both the yoga mat and the towel in the washer after each practice just to make sure it doesn't reek ;)

I hope this helps
posted by rippersid at 11:59 AM on March 4, 2014

I'm only moderately sweaty (and don't do yoga in heated rooms very often) but I love my Manduka travel mat for inversions and other poses where sweaty hands and feet would often mean slipping. It's incredibly grippy.
posted by Kurichina at 12:05 PM on March 4, 2014

I use an Aurorae mat with a smallish microfiber pack towel over the front of the mat, where my hands are generally placed.

If I even think about yoga, sweat drips from my palms regardless of the temperature. I don't intentionally go to hot yoga classes, but during the summer the studio thermometer often reads "HI" after passing 99F.
posted by esoterrica at 12:24 PM on March 4, 2014

I have been practicing yoga for a long time and sweat a lot and have tried all sorts of mats.

For my money, I love love love the Jade mat. There is really no other mat.

I suppose they smell a bit rubbery, but all mats kind of smell weird, and the smell fades. I don't really notice it.
posted by Lutoslawski at 1:49 PM on March 4, 2014

I had a Jade mat.. replaced it with a Prana Evolution mat. Prana mat is nice and big, which I love, but the Jade Harmony mat was stickier.

The Jade mat lasted me about 5 years (leaving it in the hot car, and doing yoga lots), but definitely started to wear away. That said, I'll still get another one (but the bigger version) when it comes to getting a mat again.

One thing I find - cleaning my mat (I take it in the shower with me) seems to improve stickiness.
posted by backwards guitar at 2:43 PM on March 4, 2014 [1 favorite]

I have one of the YogaRat towels rippersid mentioned. They are amazing and not slippy at all - you just put whatever yoga mat you have underneath them. The best part is, the sweatier your hands are, the grippier the towel is.
posted by Lycaste at 3:05 PM on March 4, 2014

I'm a dude that mostly does Vinyasa flow and hot yoga. I've been using a Lululemon The Mat for the last two years. It is a thick, heavy mat, which I like, and runs about $70. As long as your sweat isn't pooling on the mat (it has a smooth finish on one side), I find it sticky enough. I usually just wipe it down with a damp cloth. The colored ones have a reputation for fading and they all smell like rubber when you first buy one, so if you end up with one, I would unroll it in a guest room and let it air for a few days.

For hot yoga, I am sweating enough that I need some kind of towel. I've tried the yogitoes mat sized towel linked above and the Lulu The Towel. They worked about the same for me, and the Lulu towel is a bit cheaper. Basically, they are all microfiber towels with soft plastic "dots" stuck in them in a grid pattern to keep them from moving around.
posted by kovacs at 4:01 PM on March 4, 2014

I have super sweaty hands and feet and was never able to find an inexpensive mat that wasn't slippery. So now I use Yoga Paws with a mat. And I don't slip AT ALL. They are a little expensive for what they are, but less expensive than what you might otherwise spend on a non-slip mat. I freaking love them and I use them all the time.
posted by Librarypt at 4:35 PM on March 4, 2014

I tried a Manduka mat, and slipped like crazy on it. Jade Harmony is the only mat I've been able to use without slipping. (And it took about two months of breaking in first.) About 80% of the yoga students and teachers at my local studio have a Jade Harmony mat. I've also tried special yoga rosin, which helped with the breaking in period.
posted by instamatic at 4:35 PM on March 4, 2014

I forgot to mention the rubber smell of the Jade mat. It is definitely there, but either goes away, or you get used to it, because after a couple of weeks I never noticed it again.
posted by backwards guitar at 5:09 AM on March 5, 2014

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