The Best Mats for Hot Yoga, According to Experts

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Holding asanas in a heated class can be tricky—you’re dealing with clingy clothes and stinging sweat in your eyes and trying not to slip—which is why having the best mat for hot yoga is essential to keeping you stable and safe. The ideal pick will help you feel “zoned in on your practice to the point where you’re not focusing on your mat,” Erin Archibald, a registered yoga instructor with CorePower in Denver, tells SELF. But finding one that doesn’t slip, bunch up, or cause discomfort as you move and perspire isn’t as simple as grabbing the first option you see on the shelf. We spoke with yoga instructors to help you find the very best options.

Our top picks:

  1. Best Overall: Lululemon The Mat 5mm
  2. Most Durable: Manduka Pro
  3. Best No-Slip Grip: JadeYoga Harmony Mat
  4. Best Large Mat: Mocana Nimbus
  5. Most Colorful Designs: Reetual Yoga Mat
  6. Best Budget Option: Gaiam Sol Dry Grip Yoga Mat
  7. Best for Alignment: Liforme Yoga Mat

Jump to:

The best yoga mats for hot yoga

Based on expert input and customer ratings, here are solid picks to elevate your practice.

1. Best Overall: Lululemon The Mat 5mm

Lululemon The Mat (5-mm.)

  • Pros: Absorbs sweat, reversible, well-cushioned
  • Cons: On the pricey side

A favorite among all three experts we spoke to, this 2022 SELF Home Fitness Award winner has a rubber base and a grippy top layer so you won’t slide around during class. Plus, it’s sweat-absorbing: “I always feel very stable and rooted when I’m practicing on a Lulu mat,” says Archibald, who has been using hers for over three years. Also cool: It’s reversible, so you can switch between a grippy and cushioned surface. The versatility of this mat means it can also be used for non-yoga activities, like HIIT workouts, Sarah Larson Levey, a registered yoga instructor and cofounder of Y7 Studio in NYC, tells SELF. For yoga practitioners wanting a thinner surface for even greater stability, there’s also a 3mm option available.

Size: 26 x 71 inches | Thickness: 5 millimeters | Weight: 5.24 pounds | Colors: 5

2. Most Durable: Manduka Pro

  • Pros: Easy to clean, great traction, thick padding
  • Cons: Heavy

This mat comes in two sizes and is “very grippy, supportive, and stable,” Archibald says. The closed-cell construction seals out moisture and bacteria, and makes it easy to wipe down and disinfect. Slightly thicker than Lululemon’s The Mat, this product can be a great option for folks wanting extra cushioning for their joints. Customers describe the Manduka Pro as worth the investment—it is pretty pricey—and it comes with a lifetime guarantee to boot.

Size: 26 x 71 (or 26 x 85) inches | Thickness: 6 millimeters | Weight: 7.5 (or 9.5) pounds | Colors: 7

3. Best No-Slip Grip: JadeYoga Harmony Mat

  • Pros: Solid traction, sweat-absorbing, very supportive
  • Cons: Hard to clean

Described by Levey as “wonderful,” this natural rubber mat provides ample cushioning. Archibald finds it to be very grippy and incredibly supportive, and she likes the porous sweat-absorbing surface—it provides a “grittier” feel compared to other mats, she says. The one downside of the Harmony: It can be tricky to clean. “It’s definitely not something that you can just wipe down with a towel,” Levey says. To thoroughly sanitize it, she recommends using JadeYoga’s mat cleaner.

Size: 24 x 68 inches | Thickness: 4.7 millimeters | Weight: 5 pounds | Colors: 14

4. Best Large Mat: Mocana Nimbus

  • Pros: Great for tall folks, comes with a carrier, has a grippy surface
  • Cons: No major drawbacks

For exercisers needing a little extra room to move around, the Mocana Nimbus may be the ideal pick: It’s two inches longer than your standard-size yoga mat. “It’s a good length. I don’t feel like I’m hanging off the mat at all, but it’s not obnoxiously large,” Wesley Showalter, CSCS, a yoga instructor in Chicago, tells SELF. During a recent hot yoga session where he was drenched in sweat, Showalter says he didn’t slip once. Also neat: The mat comes with a shoulder bag, making it easy to haul around.

Size: 26 x 73 inches | Thickness: 4.5 millimeters | Weight: 5.8 pounds | Colors: 7

5. Most Colorful Designs: Reetual Yoga Mat

  • Pros: Cool look, prevents slips
  • Cons: On the smaller side, less cushioned

These eye-catching mats from Reetual will add some joy—and stability—to your hot yoga practice. Made with a padded rubber base to prevent slippage and a top layer that becomes grippier the more you sweat (since moisture helps increase the traction), they’re both fun and functional. Amazon reviewers describe them as “stunning” and “beautiful,” and praise the fact that “there’s absolutely no slipping,” even in the sweatiest conditions. This mat is slightly smaller than average and also on the thinner side, so it may not be ideal for folks who need ample room to move about or those who prefer extra cushioning for their joints.

Size: 24 x 70 inches | Thickness: 3.5 millimeters | Weight: 4.85 pounds | Colors: 14

6. Best Budget Option: Gaiam Sol Dry Grip Yoga Mat

Gaiam Dry-Grip Yoga Mat (5-mm.)

  • Pros: Moisture-wicking surface, supportive
  • Cons: Need to wipe sweat off

For a quality mat at a lower price point, consider this pick from Gaiam. The textured topcoat is moisture-wicking and the cushioned design “made hot yoga a lot easier!” per one Amazon reviewer, who said they were able push their feet into the mat for added stability. They also recommended using it with a towel to remove any sweat, since it wicks moisture rather than absorbing it. FYI: This mat is smaller than standard size, so tall folks may consider ordering the XL version, which measures 26 x 78 inches.

Size: 24 x 68 inches | Thickness: 5 millimeters | Weight: 4.82 pounds | Colors: 6

7. Best for Alignment: Liforme Yoga Mat

Liforme Original Yoga Mat

  • Pros: More surface area, includes markings to guide you, comes with a travel case
  • Cons: On the pricey side

This mat is the most expensive on the list, but reviewers say the price is well worth it. It’s slightly larger than average and made of biodegradable rubber, which makes it “durable and perfectly sticky,” wrote one Amazon reviewer. Another shared that they “don’t even need a mat towel with it since the grip is so great.” Customers also praise the mat’s alignment system—basically, a series of markings on the mat—that help you understand where to place your hands and feet as you practice. Bonus: It comes with a nifty carrying case.

Size: 27 x 73 inches | Thickness: 4.2 millimeters | Weight: 5.51 pounds | Colors: 6

How to choose a hot yoga mat

Grip: For hot yoga, you want a grippy mat to reduce your chances of slipping and sliding as things get hot and sweaty. Those made of rubber are good for grip, says Archibald, who recommends natural rubber over synthetic, since the former is often higher quality.

Sweat-absorption: Mats made with an open-cell design (meaning they’re porous) can be really helpful in yoga since they often fully absorb your sweat and don’t create a slipping hazard with any puddles, Archibald says. Many open-cell mats are constructed with natural rubber. Just keep in mind: You’ll want to regularly clean them so that they don’t get stinky. If you prefer an option that’s easy to sanitize, go for a closed-cell design (nonporous), which makes them easy to wipe and disinfect, Levey says. With a mat like this, you may want to use a yoga towel for extra sweat absorption and traction.

Thickness: Mats come with varying amounts of padding, and the right level boils down to personal preference. You might feel more stable for balancing poses on a thinner mat, while a thicker one will provide more cushion for your joints. Generally, you’ll want a thinner option (in the three to five millimeter range) for hot yoga for a more grounded feeling, and a thicker mat for slower-paced styles (like yin or restorative), Archibald says.

Size: The standard for yoga mats is 26 by 71 inches, which works well for most folks, Archibald says. If you’re taller (say, over six two), then you may feel more comfortable on a wider, longer version, Levey says.

Other equipment that’s useful for hot yoga

Yoga is one of those exercises that can be as simple or souped up as you want it to be when it comes to equipment. Knowing you’re going to break a sweat, it’s a good idea to bring a towel to wipe your hands or face during a hot yoga class. You might want a set of yoga blocks to help you maintain proper alignment in various poses or modify them, straps to deepen your stretches or help you get into them, and bolsters to support and cushion your knees or hips. Another nice-to-have: a yoga mat bag or carrying strap to make transporting your mat a little easier.


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