By Jennifer Dixon MBA ERYT 500 – If you’ve been following along the last few weeks, you’ll know I’ve been writing about yoga mats. Here at the studio, we get a lot of questions about recommended products, so I thought having a written legacy of recommendations would be beneficial so they can look up exactly why I recommend the products I do. Yoga mats seemed the most logical to start with because, well, frankly that’s really the most basic thing you should have to start a yoga practice. Please remember, I don’t get paid a dime for these reviews. I do use Amazon affiliate links, but these reviews are my own opinion based on my own experience with the products.
In today’s review, I will be talking about the Lululemon Reversible 5mm Yoga Mat. I don’t actually own this yoga mat. A very dear student let me borrow her mat when she heard I was reviewing mats and she wanted to know what I thought. (I have a Manduka Eko Mat that I reviewed a couple of weeks ago and well, if you read that post, I’m sorta funny about using it basically all the time, so it’s hard to just use other mats)–read that post and you’ll know why!
I don’t own a Lululemon mat (or much of any of that brand for that matter) for a few reasons. Back in my “Corporate America” days, when I had more money to blow (and boy did I) I used to make myself go into Lulu stores because I wanted desperately to fit in there, and alas (anyone that knows me personally probably snorted at that statement) I never did. I’m more the frizzy hair’d girl that rolled out of bed 15 minutes late and has to be where ever in like 5 minutes (been like that even before kids.)
I do have a Lululemon travel mat (Which I will review soon) but picking that out was more because of necessity because I was traveling overseas and needed something that would fit easier into my bag. That mat is I use it when I HAVE to use it, not because I will love and hold til death do us part. So, suffice it to say, I never felt like I was…hmm…on the level that would be acceptable enough to shop there, despite trying many many times, plus I had trouble finding leggings to fit my particular shape.
So…onto my review.
Because this Lululemon mat is known for the amazing stickiness that it holds, I was really wanting to make sure I practiced in a hot environment, so this morning, I cranked up the heaters and placed myself right below one of the studio infrareds and just got to sweating and moving and stretching.
It was basically awesome.
For those of you not into the hot yoga, this isn’t a way of torturing yourself, it actually really does feel good to practice in the heat, it can help you stretch out better, especially when it’s flippin cold outside, it can help you get better at tolerating heat (well, that sorta goes without saying,) but it also can help your body/mind to start working together to overcome. I mean, if you can work hard in 90+ degree temperatures, and enjoy it, you can certainly manage life at a comfortable 74 degrees, no matter what gets thrown at you!!. Maybe that’s a good topic for another blog post!
So right away, I noticed something. The non-stick reputation was legit. That mat didn’t feel slippery at all. I was worried that it was so sticky that I’d leave a little of my toe skin behind on each Vinyasa foot roll over, but miraculously, that didn’t happen. I was practicing on a light grey mat that showed every single drip of sweat which inevitably made me a bit self conscious about my own perspiration propensities, but nevertheless, I persisted. (just like the tshirt says, right?)
This mat felt much less substantial than my Manduka Eko, and downright light weight compared to the Mantra Lux Pro. Both sides seemed feasible to practice on, but I only practiced on the tie-died looking side. Even though it felt like less than the Eko and Lux Pro, the cushion was still there. I actually had to work harder at balance today than I did with the Mantra Lux Pro, but in all honesty, I practice on that pro more regularly, so the feel of that unevenness is probably something my body inherently knew whereas this cushion was new. So…bonus points for rewiring the brain there today! 🙂 I would have to practice on this mat regularly for a week or two to see if it really did have a more “cushiony” feel vs just different feel.
Here are the Stats about the Lululemon Reversible 5mm Yoga Mat
- It costs $68-78 so really close to the Manduka Eko and Mantra Lux Pro
- Made out of Polyurethane
- Natural Rubber Base Gives You Cushioning And Grip In Low-Sweat Classes
- An Antimicrobial Additive Helps Prevent Mould And Mildew On The Mat
- .24lb (2.38kg)
- 66cm X 180cm (26″ X 71″), 5mm (0.19″)
- It comes in 7 color varieties.
What I loved about the Lululemon Yoga Mat
- Absolutely no slippage. –and even better, no slip without the “grab” that is common in a lot of yoga mats that say they are no-slip. That means the bottom of my toes were grateful for the ability to slide back in a Vinyasa without leaving the bottom layer of skin behind on the mat.
- Light weight. Compared to my Eko and the Lux Pro, this puppy is like a feather. I thought it would be much nicer to travel with than even my favorite, the eko–simply because it wouldn’t require me to lift weights to lug it around.
- The size was perfect. It was not too long and not too wide. I had just enough space to really spread out like in a good Prasarita Pattotanasa, but I wasn’t taking up two spots on the studio floor.
- I liked that it was supportive, but not to the point of distraction. The cushion provided relief when I practiced my inversions but it wasn’t so squishy I looked like a fish flopping around on the ground.
- It was pretty. Ok, I’m a girl, and although I’m not a super girly girl, the attention to detail the folks at lululemon gave in creating a surface that was subtly different, I liked it. (even if the light color DID show every drip of my sweat.)
- This mat stays put. I practiced on the studio Zebra mats, which have some inherent cushion in them, as well as anti-slip, but this mat didn’t budge an iota.
Things that I didn’t LOVE about the Lululemon Reversible 5mm Yoga Mat
- The mat appeared to need to be rolled with the practice side out, which is just an annoying pet peeve (I guess) of mine. It’s sort like the over/under toilet paper debate, and in this case, I feel like it should be rolled up to where when you set it down on the ground, it’ll unroll…(which makes that an over on the toilet paper side of the fence, right??)
- It is very squishy. This is great to cushion the joints, but it can make balance more difficult, which sometimes i love, sometimes, I really just need a friendly mat to hold me up and tell me it’ll be ok if I can’t hold the Utthita Hasta Padangusthasana today.
- This is purely based on feedback from friends that have this mat, it doesn’t seem to last that long. Fellow yogi friends of mine have said that it starts to lose its stickiness in a couple of years of near daily use. Since I have only had the pleasure of practicing on it once, I can’t say much to this, but I want to let you know that fact.
- This mat is supposed to be reversible, but honestly, I don’t know how anyone could have practiced on the non-colored “rubber” side. It felt really strange under my hands and I don’t use a yoga mat towel.
That’s right, basically, only a few real technical things that I didn’t like about the mat, and one anecdotal issue. In all honesty, I could see myself getting one of these mats, one day, maybe…if my Eko mat finally does decide to die. I liked the fact it was a little lighter. I liked the stickiness aspect, but I hate spending so much on a mat that isn’t going to be around with me as long as a good pet.
Do you have the lulu mat? What do you think about it? I’d love to hear your comments and see what I missed in this review. Be sure to check out the blog section of this website and see all the cool stuff we post several times a week to be entertained,
If you’re in the Chattanooga Area, I welcome you to come practice with us at Thrive Yoga and Wellness. I may be pretty bias here, but I believe this place is really special. You walk into a community–a group of friends, all trying to reach their wellness goals, together, through yoga.. It truly is a unique and blessed facility. If you aren’t in the area, you can still practice with us on our free youtube channel (and please like and subscribe, new content will be added weekly!). If you would like more direct access and special programming, we have some pay per view content as well at Thrive Online. I can’t wait to practice with you soon.