What do you guys use to clean your mats with? After a while, they start to smell funny (at least mine does) and now I’m kind of paranoid about picking up germs from public places. What about this yoga mat wash? Or do you think plain old soap and water would do the trick?
I take shower with my mat every few classes (or after each in case I sweat a lot). Its on the ground in the cabin when I shower. Then I rinse it and put on chair to dry. And that’s it. Daisy fresh.
Regarding germs - I think its healthier if your mat has own, stable germ population that your body knows and is adapted to. Super clean things are open and available territory to alien germs which may turn to be nasty. Established bacterial colonies defend their territory and in fact protect you.
If you have plastic mat and use soap it will be like a sponge and you will have a hard time.
Just use cold water that removes the smell better if it has any smell.
Never leave it rolled up after use I air mine out in the Florida sunshine for a couple of hours after class ,I have three mats I alternate them depending on the surface I am practicing on
Cleaning … Wipe with a Moist towel add a few drops of vinegar before going outside in the fresh air once a week for each mat keeps mine pretty clean
No doubt a quick web search has provided an exhaustive list of home made cleanser recipes.
Let?s examine a few cautions.
First off you might want to check with your mat manufacturer to make sure that the mat accepts what you plan to clean it with as essential oils may stain some mats, or even clog the pores of the mats.
Essential oils come with warning labels hazards and guidlines for a reason, my favorite:
[I]If you have sensitive skin, epilepsy, heart or kidney problems, or any serious medical condition, do not use essential oils unless advised by a physician or medical professional that it is safe[/I]
Do essential oils mimic estrogen? The web lights this debate up http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0166445X06002372
Washing machines: Again check with manufacturer. Manduka claims the mat might actually damage the washer.
Next you want to examine what you want to do:
Soap and water, be it dish soap or a castile soap will do wonders for removing oils and dirt and for [B]disinfection[/B] [I]the removal or destruction of pathogens from inanimate objects.[/I]
However many little nasties will not be removed by a wipe down.
[I]Sanitization is the cleansing of inanimate objects to reduce the microbial count to a safe level[/I].
Again be wary about mixing cleansers, sure bleach is going to overclean the mat but what is it going to do to you?
What is it going to do if you mix it with anything? Leftover studio cleansers, even vinegar will react strongly with bleach unleashing some heavy toxic nasties. Be ware
I use 25% witchhazel which can be found at most phramacys or grocery stores. I also use about 75% distilled water. I put this solution in a spray bottle. I use a wet rag to wipe down the mat.
I use just soap and water. I wipe it down after using it and never leave it rolled up.
I boil some soapnuts and wash with that. sometime I hang it in the rain.