It’s hard not to wonder, when you’re sweating in Down Dog or kicking back in Savasana, exactly what toxic nasties may be leaching into your skin from your yoga mat. Two green-minded companies, Algix and Effekt, have created a new yoga mat made from an unlikely and earth-friendly source: algae. The companies have developed a flexible foam made from algae harvested from waste streams in the US and Asia. The algae is renewable, GMO-free, doesn’t require pesticides and is not useable as a food source.

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“Flexible foams have been overwhelmingly made out of non-renewable petrochemicals for decades,” says Rob Falken, Effekt’s and Bloom Holding’s Managing Director. “Over the past year we’ve worked really hard to create a suitable algae biomass alternative that doesn’t compromise performance and that delivers tried–and–true characteristics for all sorts of demanding applications” he continued. Along with yoga mats, the company plans to produce foam pads for surfboards, footwear, toys and other products.

Related: Largest toxic algae bloom in West Coast history may be linked to climate change

Algal blooms have been increasing worldwide as a result of climbing water temperatures and human activities like overfishing. The companies have patented a process of harvesting that algae and drying it before combining it with other compounds to form a soft, flexible foam. The foam, which contains from 15 to 60 percent algae, depending on the application, can be produced in a wide range of colors. Manufacturing will begin in 2016 and will be marketed under the brand name Bloom.

+ Bloom

Via Good Magazine

Lead image via Shutterstock, images via Tristan Schmurr and Eli Christman.