How to clean and care for your cork yoga mat

how to clean a cork yoga mat

Cork yoga mats have gained immense popularity among yogis for their durability, eco-friendliness, and unique properties. These mats, crafted from natural cork and rubber, not only provide a comfortable surface for your practice but also come with built-in antimicrobial qualities that fight bacteria, preventing mold and rot. However, to ensure your cork yoga mat stays pristine and functional, adopting the right care routine is essential. Here's a comprehensive 10-step guide to help you care for your cork yoga mat.

  1. Use Essential Oils for Gentle Cleaning: Instead of harsh chemicals, opt for natural products to clean your cork yoga mat. Essential oils like tea tree oil or lavender are not only less abrasive but also leave a pleasant scent while keeping your mat clean and intact. Avoid over-cleaning: Cork is naturally antimicrobial which means that bacteria/mould cannot form on the surface, therefore cleaning it too often is not needed (over-cleaning can break down the cork surface). 

  2. Avoid Submerging Your Mat: Cork, being a natural substance, can be compromised if submerged in water. When cleaning your mat, avoid soaking it completely. Instead, use a warm, damp washcloth to wipe off the surface gently.

  3. Opt for a Damp Cloth for Wiping: Choose a soft washcloth or towel dampened with warm water for wiping your mat. This method is gentle and won't break down the mat's particles, ensuring it stays intact and clean.

  4. Say No to Machine Washing: While washing machines are excellent for clothes, they are not suitable for yoga mats, especially those made of natural materials like cork. Machine washing can damage the constructs and compromise the integrity of your mat.

  5. Need a deeper clean? Try a Vinegar and Water Solution: Create a natural cleaning solution by mixing equal parts of vinegar and water. To enhance the scent, add a few drops of essential oil. This mild solution effectively cleans your mat without risking damage.

  6. Dirty spot to clean off? Try dish soap: When your mat has as dirty spot you need to clean, opt for mild dish soap mixed with water. Dish soap, designed for handwashing is gentle enough to preserve the delicate nature of your yoga mat.

  7. Let Your Mat Air Dry: After cleaning, let your mat air dry completely. This prevents unpleasant odors and ensures the longevity of your mat by avoiding water-induced breakdown.

  8. Invest in a Natural Yoga Mat Cleaner: Consider using a natural yoga mat cleaner (such as the Zenful Yoga Refresh Spray) for added assurance of cleanliness. These cleaners are designed to be gentle on the mat while effectively disinfecting it.

  9. Store Your Mat Properly: To enhance longevity, store your mat with the cork-side on the outside when rolled, and lay the mat on its side rather than storing it vertically. 

  10. Avoid Prolonged Sun Exposure: While sunlight is beneficial, avoid leaving your mat in direct sunlight for extended periods. Prolonged exposure can deform the mat and compromise its structure. 


Caring for your cork yoga mat is a simple yet crucial aspect of prolonging its lifespan. By incorporating these 10 steps into your mat care routine, you not only ensure a clean and fresh surface for your practice but also contribute to the longevity of this eco-friendly accessory. Cherish your cork yoga mat, and let it accompany you on your yoga journey for years to come.


Watch video: How to properly clean and store a cork yoga mat

how to clean a cork yoga mat

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