Best yoga mats 2023: superb designs for grip, style, and all practices

Best yoga mats: Woman performing a yoga move in backbend at home on her yoga mat during yoga routine
(Image credit: Getty images)

The best yoga mats could transform your yoga practice, and we've tried and tested some of the most popular models on the market to help you decide which one to roll out. 

If you find yourself slipping around on your mat during hot yoga or nursing sore joints during Yin, it could be time for an upgrade. From Lululemon to Manduka, our fitness team got to work to bring you the pros and cons of each before you make an investment. 

Yoga mats vary in design, style, cost and materials so we recommend doing some homework before parting with your cash. Some people prefer a thicker mat during slower-paced practices, whereas thinner mats help you connect with the ground better for shoulder balances and inversions. 

Whichever yoga mat you invest in, level up your practice using this accessory. And whether you’re hitting your inversion practice hard or simply improving flexibility and mobility, the best yoga mats could be perfect. We also recommend checking out how to clean your yoga mat properly and which burns more calories, yoga vs Pilates.

The best yoga mats 2023

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How to choose the best yoga mat for you

When shopping for the best yoga mats, there are a number of factors to consider, before buying: 

Size and thickness: Most standard yoga mats are about ¼ inch thick, but you may want a thicker mat if you require more cushioning for your wrists and knees. If you're a taller yogi and don’t want to go “off mat” while you practice, look for a longer yoga mat. 

Grip: Will the texture and surface provide grip and traction during your class or workout? The last thing you want is an injury because the mat slipped mid-practice. Look for mats that are designed to be grippy without the need for a yoga towel if this is important.

Sustainability: If making sustainable choices is important to you, you should look into the materials of the mat and how and where it’s made. 

Odor: As for odor and visual appeal, those vary by the mat’s manufacturer. Some of the best yoga mats have an initial unpleasant smell, which can dissipate after cleaning.

Cost: The best yoga mats come in a wide range of prices, from affordable, sub-$20 options to higher-end, brand-name selections. When it comes to cost, you may want to think about how often and how heavily you’ll use the mat. If you’re a dedicated yogi or you want to use a mat for HIIT workouts, you may want to splurge for a tougher mat that can hold up under the conditions.

 Best yoga mats for hot yoga

If you prefer hot yoga (or you tend to get sweaty during workouts), the grip will be your single most important factor when choosing the best yoga mat for hot yoga. A thinner mat will also help you ground down better during balances and inversions because there’s less distance because you can connect better with the floor.

Natural rubber tends to fare better in heat, and any brand that uses moisture-wicking materials will prevent slipping and bacteria build-up. You can often find this information on the brand’s website. We love cork yoga mats for this reason, but they can be harder to clean and stain more easily.  

It’s best to consider the type of classes you prefer. Fast-paced classes will require quick transitions, so you’ll need to balance a grippy texture with the ability to move with ease, whereas Yin yoga lovers might prefer plush cushioning. 

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Jane McGuire
Fitness editor

Jane McGuire is Tom's Guide's Fitness editor, which means she looks after everything fitness related - from running gear to yoga mats. An avid runner, Jane has tested and reviewed fitness products for the past five years, so knows what to look for when finding a good running watch or a pair of shorts with pockets big enough for your smartphone. When she's not pounding the pavements, you'll find Jane striding round the Surrey Hills, taking far too many photos of her puppy.