At Mavela, we are proud of the materials we use. We want to tell you why.
Yoga mats can vary greatly in terms of price and material. There are four major components used to create yoga mats. Let’s talk about them - and why we chose ours.
Polyvinyl chloride (PVC) is a plastic-based material that is toxic in all steps of production. Because it is a low-cost material, it is, unfortunately, one of the most common yoga mat materials. It produces dioxins in manufacturing and in disposal, a priority pollutant that does not break down easily. Heavy metals are often added in production to make the material more durable. These properties and additives are considered harmful carcinogens to humans. This is definitely the #1 material we would avoid in yoga mats. Even products that claim to be “non-toxic” can usually not answer the question of what materials are used instead of phthalates, heavy metals, and chlorine. A piece of advice - stay away!
Thermoplastic elastomer (TPE) is a man-made blend of plastic and polymers. Although much less harmful than PVC, it is still not our top choice. TPE is lightweight, low-cost, and free of stabilizers and pollutants. However, it does pose problems when it comes to biodegrading due to its plastic base, and has a bigger carbon footprint when compared to other materials. Not a bad option, but we can do better.
Nitrile Butadiene Rubber (NB Rubber) is a synthetic rubber used commonly in the automotive industry and has been utilized more recently in the yoga industry. It is low cost, durable, and resists the growth of bacteria. However, this material can be dangerous if it includes toxic substances in production, which it often does. It is also non-recyclable and does not break down easily, therefore, is not eco-friendly!
Natural rubber is made from the sap of rubber trees, found mostly in South America and South Asia. This option is waterproof, durable, comfortable, and biodegradable. The only downside to watch out for here is allergies. Since natural rubber contains latex, those with allergies to latex should not use these mats. Although it comes at a higher cost, this option is unmatched in terms of quality, durability, and sustainability. That is why all of our mats are made of natural rubber, paired with one of our two easy to clean, absorbent, and non-slip toppings, we take pride in our pick.
Long story short, we axe the materials that are bad for you and for the environment. Instead, we only offer products of the highest quality and that are sustainable. We aim to provide a purchase you can be proud of! But don't just take our word for it, give it a try yourself!