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If you’ve ever found yourself sliding around in downward facing dog, then you’ll want to read this article! Today, we’re talking about the best yoga mats for sweaty hands.
Yoga mats have come a long way in recent years.
I remember rolling into my first class with my $19.99 yoga mat. (There’s nothing wrong with a $19.99 yoga mat – unless it doesn’t work like you’re expecting.)
Shopping online wasn’t a thing yet, and yoga-inspired brands hadn’t become the athleisure lifestyle on every corner that they are today. So I just picked up whatever I could find at Target.
A mat is a mat, right? My most significant decision was whether to buy the purple mat or the blue mat. (I took the purple one for those of you on the edge of your seats.)
Fast forward to yoga class. I was slipping and sliding to the point where it took away from my practice. Not only is sliding super annoying, but it can also set you up for injuries as you struggle to maintain your grip in a compromising yoga pose.
No need to pull a hammie skidding out of a wide legged forward fold. (Ouch.)
Even if you’re a stone-cold beginner, it’s worth investing in a quality yoga mat that will support your practice and create an inviting space to find your groove.
Whether you have chronically sweaty palms or you’re hitting your mat after an intense workout session, check out these crowd favorite yoga mats for sweaty hands to keep your asana firmly planted!
YOGA MAT FEATURES TO CONSIDER
First, let’s talk about some essential features to think about when shopping for your next yoga mat.
As silly as it sounds, the right mat can make all the difference in your yoga experience (including making it a place you’ll actually want to come back to).
Yoga mats are made of various materials including natural rubber, PVC (polyvinyl chloride), and TPE (thermoplastic elastomer). There are even cork yoga mats (and they claim to be non-slip).
The materials will affect the cushioning, weight, texture, grip, and lifespan of the mat.
Rubber yoga mats have good traction, but not recommended for those with latex allergies or sensitivities.
PVC mats (sometimes called a sticky yoga mat) provide a “sticky” surface. Side note: a “sticky mat” is only sticky when it’s clean and dry.
- Is eco-friendly important to you?
- Do you have latex allergies?
- Are you looking for a thicker mat with more support?
5mm is a fairly standard thickness for yoga mats. Different materials will provide different sensations of support.
Keep in mind that thicker mats may make balance poses more challenging and will add weight to the mat when carrying it around.
Extra padding can be a benefit if you’re looking for your mat to double as a Pilates mat or regular exercise mat.
If you’re looking for more cushioning but don’t want to lug around a heavy mat, you can consider these smaller props to add to your practice.
Like everything, you get what you pay for.
Budget mats tend to lack support and may start to break down relatively quickly instead of lasting for years.
GRIP & TEXTURE
Many brands are offering mats with a superior grip to keep you grounded.
If you do hot yoga or Bikram yoga, make sure you look for a yoga mat that stays grippy even when wet.
Each brand will have its own texture and what’s right for you is a personal preference.
Most yoga mats come in standard sizes (approximately 68” long by 24” wide), but some have variations that offer more length/width and can be useful for taller folks or those wanting a few more inches of personal space.
This may not be a consideration for everyone, but if you’re a commuter or use it for travel, a pound or two may make a big difference to you.
Travel mats are available but often come at the expense of less support, so it depends on your needs.
Weights range from 2-3 pounds for a travel mat, up to approximately 6-8 pounds.
EASE OF CLEANING
It’s a good idea to keep your yoga mat clean and germ-free. Some yoga mats lose their “stickiness” if the surface is dirty. Can you just wipe it down, or is it machine washable?
Mat washes are available from popular brands like Manduka, however, you need to know what your mat is made of as some washes can leave a residue and make the surface more slippery.
A rubber mat constructed from an open-cell material will absorb bacteria vs. a closed-cell construction.
Check out the cleaning instructions for your mat.
There’s a yoga mat to suit every practice and personality.
- Are colors important to you?
- Do you like a plain mat or one with a design or alignment lines?
Personally, I have enough mental chatter without adding more visual stimuli. If you’re inspired by alignment lines and mandala patterns, let your personality shine.
The Liforme mat is gaining popularity and sports alignment lines.
YOGA MATS FOR SWEATY HANDS
JADE HARMONY MAT
The Jade Harmony mat is one of my favorite mats of all time. It has just the right amount of grip and comfortable squish. It’s made from natural rubber and is a sustainable eco option.
In my experience, this has been a wonderful mat and I would definitely purchase another in the future.
These are excellent options for tall people or to create more perimeter to keep people out of your personal space.
There are also thicker versions of the jade yoga mat as well as mini mats available for additional cushioning.
One thing I would caution about this mat is its durability. Because it’s made from open-cell rubber, the surface is a little more delicate and can get nicks and scratches. (See the picture below for a close-up of the mat.) My mat is a few years old and is holding up well.
The surface is somewhat textured and it can be slightly sticky to slide around on the surface compared to other mats.
I wouldn’t use a Jade mat as a regular workout mat where it will come in contact with sneakers or rough surfaces. (My husband found this out the hard way.)
Here’s a close up of the surface of the mat to see the texture.
One of the mats in my collection is a Lululemon “the mat” which is about 10 years old and still going strong.
I remember the selling point for me was when the video demonstrated the mat sucking up a glass of water that was spilled on the surface. I just knew I had to try it!
I’m part of the Lululemon Collective and may receive a commission if you make a purchase from the Lululemon links below. You can read my full disclosure here.
This is a super grippy mat. I have never slipped on this mat, and it’s provided the same level of traction since day one. The surface is smooth, allowing for easy maneuverability. It does show some wear and tear but I haven’t noticed this affecting the mat’s performance.
Some complain that the smell is strong, but it depends on how sensitive you are to this particular smell. I remember it did have a rubber smell, which dissipated over time.
This mat is a bit heavier but provides excellent cushioning.
What I dislike about this mat are the squeaky sounds it makes in quiet studios moving in between some yoga postures. I never noticed this when practicing at home, but in a quiet studio, it’s a little distracting. This is a slight trade-off for getting all that traction.
MANDUKA PRO MAT
The Manduka Pro is a crowd favorite that always shows up in the search results. If you’re looking for a thick yoga mat, 6mm provides excellent cushioning.
The top of the mat has a smooth and slightly textured surface and won’t hinder you from moving around on the mat.
When I first got this mat, I was not aware that there was break-in period.
My first impressions were the mat itself was very high quality, but I found the surface to be a little slippery and I wasn’t impressed by the grip that others had raved about.
Manduka claims that the material used to make the PRO isn’t meant to absorb sweat like some other materials, but the mat “breaks in” and becomes more grippy with use.
To be fair, I didn’t use it enough to really see how it breaks in. For those who don’t want to wait, there is a salt treatment that you can do to hurry up the process.
This may be a big undertaking for a casual yogi who just dropped some cash on an expensive mat – but don’t be discouraged yet!
Currently, I’m working to break in my Manduka mat. I have noticed some change in the areas where I always place my hands and feet. I’ll come back and update this article to let you know how the story ends!
For now, I use the Manduka Equa towel if the mat gets too slippery during my practice. The mat towel provides a good grip and a soft surface for a different kind of feeling during your practice.
If you frequent hot yoga, you definitely need a mat towel over this mat. The equa towel is sweat-activated, which means it gets grippier when wet. You might see people spraying their towel with water before a class; this helps to make the surface more grippy.
Manduka also makes a hot yoga mat in their GRP mat series.
Due to the thickness and lifetime warranty of this mat, plus rave reviews by serious yogis and instructors alike, this mat is worth adding to your search. You can also add a yoga towel for sweatier practices.
Update: The surface of the mat is breaking in and becoming more grippy, but the process is slow. Another thing I noticed that I don’t love is that the mat moves while you practice. I only noticed this while practicing on carpet at home. The mat slightly stretches and appears to have “walked” several inches during my practice and I needed to reposition it. I did not notice this movement on hardwood floor, nor have I ever noticed this with any other mat on carpeted surfaces.
The Manduka Prolite is the more lightweight version of this mat.
OTHER HIGHLY RATED NON-SLIP YOGA MATS
These days it’s hard to tell if a yoga mat is having a flash in the pan Instagram moment or if it will truly stand the test of time.
While I don’t have personal experience with these mats, I’ve heard great things about them, and they’re worth a look in your quest for the perfect non-slip yoga mat.
- Manduka Eko Mat
- Clever Yoga Non-Slip Mat
- ALO Yoga Warrior Mat
- Liforme Yoga Mat
- CorkTec Cork Yoga Mat
YOGA MAT ACCESSORIES TO IMPROVE GRIP
There are several other accessories to improve grip and cushioning in addition to the perfect yoga mat. Check out these accessories to customize your yoga practice and prevent you from going asana-over-teakettle.
If you’re not ready to take the plunge for a new mat, you can consider using a yoga towel on top of your mat to increase the grip, especially if you’re in a hot yoga class.
Most yoga towels are made from soft microfiber to absorb sweat and stay put during practice. I like the soft feel of the Manduka Equa towel. Go Sweat is another microfiber towel available on Amazon that comes in several colors and is very affordable.
YOGA SOCKS & GLOVES
Yoga socks have small grippy nubs on the sole and can be a convenient option to improve traction. They’re also useful for Pilates and barre workouts.
Yoga gloves can also provide a bit more cushioning for the wrists.
Yoga paws are gloves and socks made of yoga mat material and add additional cushioning and grip. Yoga paws can be used with or without a mat.
These accessories are a different option for those looking for more cushioning for the wrists but don’t want to fumble around with cushioning props during practice.
To get the most out of your practice and keep yourself safe, invest in a yoga mat, and accessories that suit your needs.
Finding your mat (or mats!) creates an inviting space that you’ll look forward to returning to.
There are a lot of high-quality options on the market. It’s your practice; make it work for you!
Let me know how your next yoga session goes!