Yoga Design Lab is known for its beautiful and eco-friendly yoga mats, but are they good enough to buy? Their geometric combo mat is my newest yoga mat, and for the purpose of this Yoga Design Lab mat review I have done some additional research, and here is what I found.
Yoga Design Lab mats come in a variety of beautiful patterns. The combo mat comes with an ultra-absorbent microfiber top layer, making it a great yoga mat for those who sweat a lot, or those looking for a hot yoga mat. Additionally, it has great cushioning due to its rubber base.
It’s no surprise that Vogue listed this brand in their best yoga mat article.
In this designlab review, I discuss my experiences with my Yoga Design Lab combo mat that I’ve had for a few months now.
The Best Things About a Yoga Design Lab Mat
Beauty – It Comes In Many Beautiful Patterns
The first thing to love about the Yoga Design Lab yoga mat towel combo is the beautiful patterns it comes in!
The design of beautiful yoga mats was actually the main purpose of this brand. It all started in 2014 when Chad Turner, the creator of Yoga Design Lab, moved to Bali with the desire to create beautiful visually stunning yoga mats.
And the result is a wide array of premium yoga mats and accessories that are both eco-friendly and beautiful.
I purchased the Geometric design. I decided on this design as I remember this being the very first pattern I had seen of these mats and I guess it stuck in my mind.
The combo mat comes in 7 different and equally stunning patterns so you are sure to find something you like.
As a side note, Yoga Design Lab also has beautiful kid yoga mat options! Check them out here!
Grip – Great Grip When Wet
One of my favorite parts of the Yoga Design Lab mat is the incredible gip it offers. I’m not sure if you have ever done a yoga practice on a yoga mat without any serious grip, but it can be a real pain in the neck.
As you can imagine, having good grip is one of the most important features of a good quality yoga mat. And so I wanted to try out the grip on this yoga mat. In fact, I’ve done quite a lot of research on yoga mat grip, so I wanted to see how this mat compares.
Interestingly, most mats tend to lose grip once wet. And yet that is where the Yoga Design Lab combo mat differs.
With the Yoga Design Lab, you will know that once you have started to sweat you will get to experience a superior grip during your practice. However, this is where the main drawback comes into place and is discussed in detail below.
In order to experience this superior grip, you will have to have wet/sweaty hands or wet your mat first.
The reason is that the Yoga Design Lab combo mat comes with an ultra-absorbent microfiber top layer (think of a yoga towel) bonded to a natural rubber base layer. This means that dry hands will just slide off this microfiber layer. On the other hand, this layer can help offer great grip on wet/sweaty hands.
And this is why this is a great yoga mat for those who sweat a lot or those looking for a great hot yoga towel mat combo.
Eco-friendly – Made using 15 plastic bottles
If you are looking for an eco-friendly yoga mat, then you’ll see that Yoga Design Lab won’t disappoint. According to their website, the reasons the combo mat is heart conscious:
- The recycled PET microfiber top layer is made using 15 plastic bottles.
- The base layer is made with sustainable, non-Amazonian natural tree rubber.
- All of our beautiful designs are printed with water-based inks.
- Phthalate, silicone, and toxin fee.
Plus, know that all materials used are free of toxic chemicals. According to their website: “All of our products are Prop 65 and REACH certified, meaning that the ingredients used in our manufacturing process pass rigorous testing limiting the use of many toxic chemicals.”
Cleaning – Wipe It Down & For Deep Clean Put in Washing Machine
If you are wondering if this is a washable yoga mat, well there are actually three main ways to clean a Yoga Design Lab mat:
- For daily clean – One way is to wipe your mat after every sweaty practice with a damp cloth using just water. The second is with some water and soap.
- For deep clean – For a deeper clean you may even wash your combo mat in a washing machine, but only on a gentle cycle using a machine without a center agitator.
For more information on yoga mat cleaning, check out my article: How To Clean A Yoga Mat The Right Way
Thickness – A Comfortable 6mm Thick
Yoga Design Lab mats come in a variety of thicknesses. These can range from the very thin 1.5mm travel mats to the medium 3.5mm mats to the thicker 5.5mm mats. I chose the thicker version of 5.5mm as I prefer thick yoga mats.
To put this thickness into perspective, the Manduka Prolite yoga mat is 4.7mm, while the ever-so-popular Manuka Pro is 6mm thick.
This, for me, is the best thickness of yoga mat. Why? Well, it is thick enough so you don’t feel the floor beneath you, your joints are protected, your hands and feet don’t sink into the mat.
This particular mat has a rubber base. And so the 5.5mm version I have feels incredible to practice on, even if you’re practicing on a hard floor.
Of course, keep in mind that their mats come in 3 different thicknesses:
- Thick yoga mat at 5.5mm
- Average yoga mat 3.5mm
- Travel mat 1.5mm
Yoga Design Lab Accessories
I will add this to the list of things to love about Yoga Design Lab.
If you are looking for a variety of eco-friendly and beautiful yoga accessories to add to your collection, then you won’t be disappointed.
Yoga Design Lab has amazing extras that could work great as yoga gifts:
- Yoga bolsters
- Yoga blocks
- Yoga mat bags
- Yoga wheels
- Yoga towels
And of course, they all come in beautiful designs!
The Worst Things About a Yoga Design Lab Mat
As much as I do really like Yoga Design Lab, it still has its issues.
No Grip With Dry Hands
A big hang-up with the Yoga Design Lab combo mat is that there is absolutely no grip if you have dry hands. Of course I knew this when I bought this mat.
I had read that due to its ultra-absorbent microfiber top layer it only offers grip with wet hands.
And so the first time I practiced on it, it was a cold winter morning. The heating in the house wasn’t working. So there I was at 17°C (63° Farenheit) with super dry hands, sliding all over the place.
I went to the kitchen and wet my hands with tap water. Returned to the mat and did one successful downward facing dog (see the photo above). But then my hands dried and I was sliding all over again.
The next day I practiced in the afternoon in my much warmer studio. And that is where I got to finally experience the grip I had read about.
Yes, it’s true that the more you sweat the more the grip improves. And so I can see this mat as being great for the summer or for hot yoga making it one of the best hot yoga mats 2022.
Size – It’s Narrower and Shorter Than Most Mats
Another disadvantage of the Yoga Design Lab combo mat is that it is slightly narrower than most yoga mats.
You may notice this from the picture above where I have it sitting next to my Manduka Pro, BYoga, and my Lululemon Reversible.
And so if you like a slightly wider yoga mat for your practice, you may find that this mat is not spacious enough.
Both Good and Bad About Yoga Design Lab Mat
The Yoga Design Lab combo mat is a premium yoga mat. And so like any premium yoga, it does come with an increase in price. For just under $100 you can own a good quality yoga mat.
Paying just under $100 may seem like a lot. And it is. However, think that you are buying a good quality yoga mat.
To give you a comparison, the very popular Liforme has a lifetime of about 4-5 years and costs just over $150!
Conclusion of Yoga Design Lab Mat
Yoga Design Lab is not perfect, but it is still a terrific buy. If you are thinking of settling for a cheaper yoga mat you may want to reconsider.
In my opinion, the added price it takes to get the superior quality of a Yoga Design Lab is well worth it.
I really love the grip (with wet hands only!) and comfort that the combo mat can offer. A nice thick mat that doesn’t mess up my joints is much appreciated whenever I’m practicing.
Not to mention the fact that it’s absolutely beautiful and a pleasure to practice on!
My biggest complaint is that you can’t practice on it with dry hands. But if you practice hot yoga, then this is a great yoga mat. Plus if you practice hot yoga and are looking for just the best yoga towels, then definitely check out what they have on offer.
Additionally, if you are looking for the best travel yoga mat for hot yoga, then definitely check out their many beautiful options.
Yes, Yoga Design Lab makes very good yoga mats. They specialize in eco-friendly and beautiful yoga mat and accessories. The combo mat is perhaps their most popular yoga mat and it has an ultra-absorbent top layer which makes it the perfect mat for anyone who sweats a lot or practices hot yoga.
There are two ways to clean a Yoga Design Lab. For a daily clean you can wipe your mat with a damp cloth using just water, or some water and soap. For a deeper clean you may even wash your combo mat in a washing machine, but only on a gentle cycle using a machine without a center agitator.
Yoga Design lab is based in Bali, Indonesia, however, their products are manufactured in China by BSCI compliant factories that promote ethical, safe, and humane workplace conditions.
4mm-6mm is the best thickness of a yoga mat. This is because 4-6mm can offer sufficient cushioning for your joints. In fact, the most popular yoga mats are in this range of thickness. Any thinner and your joins may suffer and any thicker and it may be hard to practice a dynamic form of yoga.
Yes, Yoga Design Lab has a beautiful variety of yoga towels which are perfect for anyone who practices hot yoga.