Yoga mats are supposed to help with your practice by providing a little cushioning between your body and the hard floor and also to prevent your feet and hands from slipping when you’re in a pose that may need some grip to support it. After some use though, mats become dirty – simply because you roll them up and they come into contact with the underneath!! Also, the natural oils from our skin (hands and feet) can contaminate the surface of the mat. Bacteria can spread causing smells and the surface will not be as non-slip as it was meant to be.
There are various products available to clean the surface of your mat, however I’ve not been a big fan of these because to get your mat back into peak condition you have to do both sides. My favourite way to wash my mat is simply to put it through the washing machine on a cool cycle. It comes out a bit crumpled, but after I let it air dry over the back of the clothes airer or chair it looks fine and certainly works much better in the non-slip department.