You're face down - practically face planted - on your yoga mat in child's pose. What's supposed to be rest, surrender - a letting go - is suddenly thwarted by a whiff of nast and turned into a less than rejuvenating experience.
What's that smell? Well, after two months (or two years!) of downward dogs, dripping sweat and makeup, the elements have combined, bacteria is a brewin' and if you'd like to avoid a foot fungus on your forehead, we suggest you throw together this do-it-yourself mat cleaner and get to spraying.
In yoga philosophy, the practice of saucha relates to cleanliness and purity. And keeping your yoga mat clean is pretty essential to honoring that, if not just a healthy habit to get in the swing of.
Sure, you can buy wipes (which are certainly convenient), but why invest in all that superfluous packaging that will just go straight to landfill? You can also purchase mat sprays for between $10 and $20, but we prefer the DIY or homemade route for a couple reasons. First, that warm, sweaty yoga opens up your pores and makes you extra susceptible to absorbing any chemical ingredients that might be present in your cleaner. So, it's best to know what's in there! And besides saving money, making your own aromatherapy spray and using it everytime you practice is a great ritualistic way to end each class.
Here's our yoga mat cleaner recipe:
- 1 cup water
- ¼ cup witch hazel or vinegar
- 10 drops tea tree oil
- 15 drops lavender organic essential oil
- 5 drops eucalyptus organic essential oil
We recommend you bring your mat spray along and use it right after your Savasana. The essential oils smell amazing and will have other yogis lingering, asking for your recipe. Lavender is calming and has antiseptic and antifungal properties, and eucalyptus is anti-bacterial and a great decongestant, all making for a beautiful close to class.
Here's what to do:
1. Spray your yoga mat cleaner liberally over the surface of your mat.
2. Wipe the yoga mat with a damp cloth and repeat on the other side.
3. Allow your mat to air dry, which should take only about 5 to 10 minutes.