Yoga mats are a breeding ground for bacteria. Show you care not just about their passion for yoga, but their wellbeing with this all-natural, DIY mat cleanser. Made from simple, natural ingredients, a blend of essential oils, and water, a few spritzes will make sure your giftee's mat stays fresh between sessions—without the harsh chemicals found in other surface cleaning products. Best of all? You add all the thoughtfulness with no time wasted; once you have your ingredients, this Gift of Time takes no more than 10 minutes to make.
A spritz a day keeps the doctor away
Sweat, germs, dirt traipsed into the studio from outside—the floor underneath your mat is home to highly resilient bacteria that can survive for hours. Not only is it nose-wrinkling, it can lead to conditions like athlete's foot and other skin infections if you're not careful. So you’ll want to keep both sides of your mat clean every time you use it to keep the bacterial buildup at bay.
What you'll need:
- A glass or plastic spray bottle
- A sticky label
- 1/4 cup of alcohol-free witch hazel – witch hazel is a distilled herb with antibacterial and antimicrobial properties known to help eliminate those invisible germs that linger on the mat’s surface.
- 2 drops of tea tree oil – along with its soothing scent, tea tree oil is a super-ingredient for disinfecting due to its antiviral, antiseptic, and antifungal properties (you can even use a few drops as a natural hand sanitizer!).
- 7 drops of lavender oil (or another scent of your choice) – using essential oils will make your spray smell amazing—many yoga studios are making their own custom blends for a signature scent, so play around!
- 3/4 cup of distilled spring water – water will dilute the witch hazel and essential oils, making the spray less pungent and helping it last (make sure to use distilled water, so that the minerals don’t affect the scent or efficacy of your spray).
How to make your spray:
It couldn’t be easier—just add all the ingredients to your spray bottle and shake well to combine. Instruct your loved one to shake before using, and to spray on both sides of their mat, making sure each side dries well before storing. Design a label for the spray bottle and place on the front or add a sprig of dried lavender or rosemary inside.
- Add a natural sponge or cloth – A sea sponge or pretty, machine-washable washcloth is the perfect added touch for your homemade spray. Instruct your loved one to wipe their mat dry after each use to prevent mold growth.
- Add a note with the ingredients –Make it easy for your giftee to remake the spray once they run out by giving them a handwritten ingredients list and step-by-step instructions. You can write this on a small strip of cardstock, punch a small hole, and attach it to the bottle’s nozzle with twine. Draw a little camera to remind them to take a picture of the note (because we all know how quickly these tiny details can get lost in the post-shavasana daze)
The final word
The benefits of yoga are undeniable, so why waste all that effort by exposing yourself to harmful bacteria? This DIY mat spray is the gift that keeps on giving—not only does it smell great, but it's a preventative measure! If your loved one is crazy about the scent, let them know they can also use this spray as a room freshener before the practice for some DIY aromatherapy. Inhale and exhale deeply, knowing everything you’re breathing in isn’t just good for your mat, but good for you too.
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