Lifestyle

The 3 Best Cork Yoga Mats

By Kirsten Bakstran
Amazon

Cork yoga mats provide more traction than traditional yoga mats, making them a great solution for anyone who’s tired of slipping and sliding through poses. The best cork yoga mats have a rubber backing that keeps in in place and a thick layer of naturally nonslip cork.

When choosing a cork yoga mat, it’s important to pick one made entirely from natural cork and rubber, rather than from a cork blend. Real cork is not only a renewable resource but also has antimicrobial properties and is naturally odor-resistant and nonslip, which is particularly helpful for strenuous (and sweaty) yoga sessions. Cork yoga mats also typically have a rubber backing, which provides additional traction on floors. Look for mats made with natural rubber for the most eco-friendly option. Some yoga mats also come with additional features, like alignment markings, and carrying straps.

Next, consider what size yoga mat you need. The mats below range in length from 68 to 80 inches, so you're sure to find an option that fits your preferences. The thickness of the mat is also important, as thicker yoga mats provide better padding for your knees and head, but thinner mats provide more stability for tricky poses. The average thickness of a yoga mat is around 3 millimeters, but some cushier options are up to 7 millimeters thick or more.

If you’re ready to swap your standard yoga mat for a high-performance, eco-friendly cork option, here are three of the best cork yoga mats that you can buy on Amazon.

We only recommend products we love and that we think you will, too. We may receive a portion of sales from products purchased from this article, which was written by our Commerce team.

1. The Best Overall

  • Size: 80 x 26 inches
  • Thickness: 6.5 millimeters

A great choice for everyone from beginners to professionals, this thick yoga mat is made from premium Portuguese cork with a natural rubber base layer. The extra-thick design measures 6.5 millimeters, which provides ample padding for everything from child's pose to headstands, and the longer length provides over 6.5 feet of space for stretches and shavasana. This mat features six vertical alignment markings with a center line to help you achieve perfect poses, and if you prefer different marking styles, it's also available in three other designs. This cork yoga mat not only has a 4.7-star overall rating on Amazon, but it's also backed by a manufacturer's warranty with a 100% happiness guarantee.

One fan raved: “I'm a yoga instructor for over 10 years and I've been looking for a mat like this forever!!! I tried jade yoga harmony and it kept falling apart for the same price. then I tried manduka but it was very annoying to roll out and it required some weird salting process beforehand. this mat though, has everything I'm looking for! It's very thick, so there's great knee protection without having to use any towels and blankets under the knee. The cork screw material is excellent for durability and grip (and conveniently matches my studio floors which is another plus!) I also love the length! I'm very tall and this is so comfy for [shavasana] and doing splits entirely on the mat without stubbing my toes on the floor! Also excellent for headstand because I don't need extra cushion under my head finally!”

2. The Runner-Up

  • Size: 72 x 24 inches
  • Thickness: 4 millimeters

If you're looking for an alternative to traditional plastic yoga mats, this eco-friendly yoga mat is made from responsibly sourced cork and natural rubber. It's not only environmentally friendly but super comfortable thanks to the 4-millimeter thickness, and at 74 inches long, it's a bit shorter than the previous pick. This mat also comes with an adjustable carrying strap that fits snuggly around it when it's rolled up, so you can easily bring it to class and store it at home. The surface has no alignment markings, making it a great option for seasoned yogis, or those who prefer a minimalist aesthetic.

One fan raved: “This mat is absolutely amazing! Not only do I love that it's eco-friendly, but the no-slip and grasp of the cork is fantastic. I teach hot classes and take hot classes, and I don't feel like I need a towel to help me from slipping during practice. Also, the mat is easy to roll up and cleans beautifully with mat spray. I don't feel like there is a smell left on the mat, which can happen when practicing in hot spaces. They also include the black carrier, which fits perfectly around the mat (and easily adjustable), so you don't have to worry about buying a mat straps in addition to your purchase here. What an awesome addition! I would feel very comfortable having this one and only mat to practice on at home or on the go.”

3. The Best Budget Pick

  • Size: 68 x 24 inches
  • Thickness: 5 millimeters

Made by the popular yoga brand Gaiam, this cheap yoga mat has all the benefits of cork without a hefty price tag. It has an all-natural, sustainably sourced cork layer that provides nonslip grip, and it has a nontoxic rubber base with a textured tread for better traction on your floors. This yoga mat measures 68 by 24 inches, so it's slightly smaller than the others on this list, but it still provides good padding with 5 millimeters of thickness. It also weighs 4.5 pounds, which isn't too heavy to carry around. You can keep it classic with the basic design pictured above, or check out the mandala-printed option to bring an extra pop of style to your studio. Gaiam warns that this mat may have a strong scent when it's first unwrapped, but that will quickly dissipate if you air it out for a few days before using.

One fan raved: “I'm obsessed with it! I've been reading about all beneficial things about cork yoga mats, and I have been looking for an affordable one ever since. It came on time and exactly as pictured (there are better photos on Gaiam's website). This mat is pretty good quality, and the cork side has great grip -- even on my sweatiest days. There was a slight smell out of the box, but I wiped it down with a spray and it disappeared.”