Can We Wash Yoga Mat in a Washing Machine: A Comprehensive Guide

By sarvottam

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Yoga is a wonderful practice that helps us connect our mind, body, and spirit. Regular yoga practice often involves using a yoga mat to provide cushioning and support during various poses and exercises. Over time, your yoga mat can accumulate sweat, dirt, and bacteria, making it necessary to clean it regularly. While hand-washing a yoga mat is a common method, many wonder if it’s safe to use a washing machine for the task. In this comprehensive guide, we will explore the pros and cons of washing a yoga mat in a washing machine and provide you with expert tips on how to do it effectively.

Can You Wash a Yoga Mat in a Washing Machine?

The answer to whether you can wash a yoga mat in a washing machine is both yes and no, and it depends on the type of yoga mat you have. Most standard yoga mats are not designed to withstand the agitation and heat of a washing machine, and attempting to do so may cause damage to the mat or the machine. However, there are certain yoga mats that are specifically labeled as machine-washable and can safely handle a gentle cycle. Before attempting to wash your yoga mat in the machine, check the manufacturer’s instructions or the label on the mat to see if it is machine-washable.

How to Wash a Yoga Mat in the Washing Machine

If your yoga mat is machine-washable, follow these steps to ensure a safe and effective cleaning process:

  1. Check the Label: Verify that your yoga mat is labeled as machine-washable. If it is not, do not attempt to wash it in the machine.
  2. Remove Excess Dirt: Before washing, remove any loose dirt or debris from the yoga mat. You can shake it or use a soft brush to gently scrub the surface.
  3. Select the Right Cycle: Set your washing machine to the delicate or gentle cycle with cold water. Avoid using hot water, as it can damage the mat’s material.
  4. Use Mild Detergent: Add a small amount of mild detergent to the machine. Avoid using bleach or harsh chemicals, as they can degrade the yoga mat’s texture.
  5. Place the Mat in a Pillowcase: To protect the yoga mat from getting tangled or damaged in the machine, place it inside a pillowcase or a mesh laundry bag. This will provide an extra layer of protection.
  6. Avoid Overloading: Do not overload the washing machine. Wash the yoga mat with other soft items, such as towels or clothing, to prevent excessive movement during the wash.
  7. Skip the Spin Cycle: After the wash cycle is complete, avoid using the spin cycle. Instead, gently squeeze out the excess water by pressing the mat between two towels.
  8. Air Dry: Lay the yoga mat flat or hang it over a clothesline to air dry. Avoid exposing it to direct sunlight, as this may cause fading or damage to the mat.

Pros and Cons of Washing a Yoga Mat in the Washing Machine


  • Convenience: Washing a yoga mat in the machine can be convenient, especially if it’s machine-washable.
  • Thorough Cleaning: The washing machine can provide a more thorough cleaning, removing sweat and bacteria effectively.


  • Potential Damage: Not all yoga mats are suitable for machine washing, and attempting to do so can lead to damage.
  • Agitation and Heat: The agitation and heat in the washing machine may cause the mat to lose its shape or deteriorate.

Alternative Methods for Cleaning a Yoga Mat

If your yoga mat is not machine-washable or if you prefer a more hands-on approach, there are alternative methods for cleaning your mat:

  1. Hand Washing: Fill a bathtub or large basin with warm water and a few drops of mild detergent. Gently scrub the mat with a soft brush or cloth, then rinse it thoroughly and air dry.
  2. Vinegar Solution: Mix equal parts of water and white vinegar in a spray bottle. Spray the solution on the mat, then wipe it down with a clean cloth. Rinse and air dry.
  3. Yoga Mat Spray: There are commercial yoga mat sprays available that are designed to clean and freshen your mat. Follow the manufacturer’s instructions for usage.
  4. Natural Solutions: For a chemical-free option, mix water with a few drops of tea tree oil or lavender oil. Spray or wipe down the mat, then rinse and air dry.


In conclusion, whether you can wash your yoga mat in a washing machine depends on its specific material and label. If your yoga mat is machine-washable, follow the guidelines mentioned above to ensure a safe and effective cleaning process. However, if your mat is not suitable for machine washing, there are alternative methods available to keep it clean and fresh. Regularly cleaning your yoga mat is essential not only for hygiene but also to maintain its longevity and performance during your practice.

FAQs About Washing Yoga Mats in the Washing Machine

  1. Can I use a top-load washing machine for washing my yoga mat? Yes, you can use a top-load washing machine if it has a gentle or delicate cycle suitable for washing yoga mats.
  2. Can I use fabric softener when washing a yoga mat in the machine? It is not recommended to use fabric softener when washing a yoga mat in the machine as it may leave a slippery residue on the mat.
  3. How often should I wash my yoga mat? The frequency of washing your yoga mat depends on how often you use it. As a general rule, consider cleaning it every 1-2 weeks or when it becomes visibly dirty.
  4. Can I put multiple yoga mats in the washing machine at once? It is best to wash one yoga mat at a time to ensure that they receive a thorough and gentle cleaning.
  5. Can I add baking soda to the washing machine for a deeper clean? Yes, adding a small amount of baking soda to the wash can help remove odors and provide a deeper clean. However, avoid using too much, as it may leave a residue.
  6. Can I use a hairdryer or heater to speed up the drying process? It is not recommended to use a hairdryer or heater to dry your yoga mat, as the heat can damage the material. Air drying is the safest method.
  7. How can I remove stubborn stains from my yoga mat? For stubborn stains, spot clean the affected areas using a soft cloth and a mixture of water and mild detergent. Avoid scrubbing too vigorously to prevent damage.
  8. Can I practice yoga on a damp mat after washing it? It is not advisable to practice yoga on a damp mat, as it may compromise your balance and grip. Ensure that your mat is completely dry before using it again.

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