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The 10 Best Yoga Mats for Your Needs

Yoga aficionados know that the difference between a strong, balanced session and one spent slipping out of poses or dealing with sore knees can lie solely in the quality of their mat. That's why a variety of yoga mats have been created with purposes beyond simply providing a barrier between you and the floor. Whatever the concern, from extra-sticky surfaces to eco-friendly materials, here are the best yoga mats to meet your needs.
Self-Guided
Aurorae Ultra-Thick
YogaAccessories Extra-Thick Deluxe
Manduka Black Mat Pro
Breathe Rabbit Flap
Jade Harmony
Hugger Mugger Earth Elements
CleanPVC
Yoga Stick-e Mat with 3-in-1 Strap
Jade Travel

Hugger Mugger Earth Elements

Hugger Mugger trades out PVC, rubber, and latex for thermal plastic elastomer, a new material that sustains the mat’s structure while allowing for future biodegradation. Keep it covered up in the sunlight if you want to prevent that from happening). Amazon.com, $52.37

Aurorae Ultra-Thick

Beginners and those with knee and joint problems would benefit from a mat that’s on the thicker side. Not only is this Aurorae mat 1/4 inch thick and extra-long (a plus for taller yoga enthusiasts), but it also has a focal point printed on the mat to help with balance. Amazon.com, $35 

YogaAccessories Extra-Thick Deluxe

This mat offers 1/4 inch of padding and is seventy-four inches long, which gives your body that much more room to stretch out and feel completely at peace during restorative poses. Customer reviews on Amazon praise its thickness but warn that the mat isn’t as sticky as you might like. Amazon.com, $20.95

Manduka Black Mat Pro

Manduka, maker of some of the highest-rated yoga mats around, also has a 1/4-inch-thick mat, but it boasts a remarkably sticky surface as well—even, according to its description, during particularly sweaty sessions. Because of that, the Manduka model might work well in Bikram yoga classes. Amazon.com, $90

Breathe Rabbit Flap

Speaking of Bikram, Breathe mats are specifically formulated to be nonslip and water-absorbent, making them ideal for those hundred-plus-degree rooms. The Rabbit Flap acts as a mat and a towel, soaking up excess sweat while maintaining a sticky surface on which to move. BreatheMat.com, $60

Jade Harmony

Jade specializes in yoga mats made with nontoxic materials. The Harmony line eschews questionable PVC for natural rubber derived from rubber trees. BarefootYoga.com, $69.95 

Hugger Mugger Earth Elements

Hugger Mugger trades out PVC, rubber, and latex for thermal plastic elastomer, a new material that sustains the mat’s structure while allowing for future biodegradation. Keep it covered up in the sunlight if you want to prevent that from happening). Amazon.com, $52.37

CleanPVC

Eco-conscious yoga fans who want to avoid harsh ingredients, like phthalates and heavy metals, in their gear might look into CleanPVC products. And the plethora of pretty colors to choose from might make them feel even happier about their decision. MatsMatsMats.com, $19.99

Yoga Stick-e Mat with 3-in-1 Strap

As the name implies, the strap has multiple uses. Not only does it help with alignment when pulled across the center of the mat (something beginners could use), but it also serves as a handy hanger and shoulder strap, which means this mat is apt for on-the-go yoga practice. Amazon.com, $49.99

Jade Travel

No need to forgo yoga sessions on vacation, when you can use a mat that’s designed specifically for travel. This one is a mere 1/8 inch thick, making for a lighter mat (it’s Jade’s lightest mat available, in fact) that you can take on the road easily. Amazon.com, $49.45

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