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Keep hydrated on the go with these eco-friendly bottles
Buying a reusable water bottle is a no brainer. They’re more practical, cost-efficient and eco-friendly than the 20,000 single-use plastic bottles that are made worldwide every second. Many look cool, too. Some water bottles are self-cleaning, others can purify or even infuse flavours into your water.
They're multi-functional, too — you can take your water bottle to the gym, on runs, in your backpack and on holiday in a carry-on bag. That they're eco-friendly and will help you curb your plastic usage significantly is a welcome bonus.
Yet to invest in a reusable water bottle? It's about time you ditched the misshapen Evian bottle loitering in your gym bag and put a healthy, environmentally-friendly cap on dehydration. All you need to do is remember to fill it.
Glass is natural and won’t taint the flavour of your drink, but it’s obviously breakable. Stainless steel bottles are the best at insulating but can give your water a metallic taste, while plastic is lightweight, durable and considered safe so long as it’s BPA-free. Whatever material you use, remember to hand-wash your reusable bottle regularly to stop bacteria building up. Get rid of smells by adding a teaspoon of bicarbonate of soda and leaving it to air dry upside down.
We tried 28 of the best water bottles, rigorously testing each for leakproofness, durability, insulation and ease of use on the treadmill. We assessed how easy the bottles were to drink from and clean, and noted any further eco benefits, such as donations to environmental charities or projects. Here's what we found.
This shapely water bottle is triple-walled for impressive insulation. It claims to keep water cold for 41 hours, and lives up to that promise. It’s comfortable to drink from and fully leakproof, so you can carry it around worry-free. It comes in three sizes and there’s a choice of over 100 subtle and jazzy colours. The stainless steel is durable but remember to hand wash it.
Key specs Capacity: 250ml, 500ml, 750ml Material: Triple-walled stainless steel Temperature claims: 18 hours hot, 41 hours cold Colours: Over 100
Arguably the best known reusable water bottle brand, Chilly’s performed well on test, especially when it came to keeping our drinks hot all day. It’s lightweight to carry around and comfortable to sip from, with no metallic taint to the water. The stainless steel has been powder-coated for longevity, so don’t worry about knocking it about a bit. There’s a huge choice of 69 colours and patterns and you can personalise your bottle with different lids, carabiners and engravings. It’s helpful to have four sizes available too.
Key specs Capacity: 250ml, 500ml, 750ml, 1.8l Material: Double-walled stainless steel Temperature claims: 12 hours hot, 24 hours cold Colours: 69
It’s easy to grab this bottle, press the top button and sip without spilling or pausing your workout. It keeps water cool (ish) and ours didn’t taste plasticky. It’s leakproof, thanks to a safety lock, and a protective cover keeps the mouthpiece germ-free. The handy marker up the side helps you keep track of how much you’re drinking and there’s a clip and a carry handle for portability. It’s available in four colours, including green and purple.
Key specs Capacity: 720ml Material: BPA-free plastic Temperature claims: None Colours: 4
This water bottle has the sleek style of our winning S’well bottle, but it’s more than £10 cheaper. It’s fully leakproof and scored highly for keeping drinks cold. It didn’t make our water taste metallic and we love that 10% of every purchase goes to Life’s a Beach - a charity that clears single-use plastic from British beaches. It comes in six colours, including blue, black and copper.
Key specs Capacity: 500ml Material: Double-walled stainless steel Temperature claims: 12 hours hot, 24 hours cold Colours: 6
Soma goes above and beyond when it comes to being eco. The cap of its glass bottle is made from natural bamboo and a percentage of each purchase goes to charity: water, which supports safe drinking water projects. Lightweight and leakproof, it’s also surprisingly durable. The glass is shatter-resistant and comes with a grippy silicone sleeve to protect it from knocks. The mouth is smooth to drink from but save this for the office, as it’s a faff in the gym. Choose from six colours including grey, sapphire and green.
Key specs Capacity: 480ml Material: Borosilicate glass, silicone, bamboo Temperature claims: None Colours: 6
Well, this water bottle certainly has a unique look. If it’s not too in-your-face design-led for you, you’ll find it pretty nifty. The top and lid double up as a detachable cup for when you’re on the go. The mouthpiece is plastic, rather than cold metal, but it’s on the narrow side. Overall, the bottle feels solid and well-made and kept our drinks satisfyingly cool all day. It comes in black, grey, white and blush, it’s dishwasher-safe and it’s available in two sizes. Dopper also runs tons of cool projects aimed at waking people up to the urgent issue of plastic pollution.
Key specs Capacity: 580ml, 350ml Material: Double-walled stainless steel, BPA-free plastic, silicone Temperature claims: 9 hours hot, 24 hours cold Colours: 4
Here’s another stand-out design that’ll win you lots of desk-side compliments. It’s flat and wide like a hip flask, making it easier to slide into a briefcase or pocket in your gym bag. There’s a carry trap too. The silicone sleeve helps with grip and the twist-off lid fastens securely. The bottle is lightweight, but plastic isn’t a good insulator, so it won’t keep drinks cool in summer. It comes in eight textured colours, including a stylish bottle green. It’s cool that Hip’s bottles help fund the removal of single-use plastics from the Atlantic Ocean.
Key specs Capacity: 650ml Material: BPA-free plastic, silicone Temperature claims: None Colours: 8
This robust bottle may be pricey, but you’ll only need to buy it once. It’s hardy enough to withstand rugged adventures and can be mixed and matched with three different lids, including a straw cap for on the go gulping. The durable stainless steel keeps drinks icy cold and steaming hot, so you can stay refreshed while enjoying the great outdoors. There are 16 colours to choose from and three sizes, including a huge 1.1-litre bottle.
Key specs Capacity: 530ml, 770ml, 1.1l Material: Double-walled stainless steel Temperature claims: None Colours: 16
This water bottle filters water as you drink - a godsend if you hate the taste of tap water. The included MicroDisc filters out nasties like chlorine and keeps healthy minerals like calcium, but it needs replacing once a month (stock up on refills online). The plastic gave our water a slightly chemical taste at first, but this improved after a few thorough rinses. Note that plastic is rubbish at keeping drinks cool, so you might want to pop it in the fridge before leaving the house. There are five fun colours available including blue and lime green.
Key specs Capacity: 600ml Material: BPA-free plastic Temperature claims: None Colours: 5
The finger hole in the lid of this colourful bottle is useful for carrying and the coating is durable and chip-resistant. The screw-top cap is quite squeaky to remove and put back on, but we can look past that. It successfully kept our drinks hot and cold and we like that you can buy 5 interchangeable lids to fit your lifestyle, including a sport cap and a bamboo cap. It’s sturdy, not too heavy and Klean Kanteen gets bonus points for being 100% carbon neutral.
Key specs Capacity: 592ml Material: Double-walled stainless steel Temperature claims: 20 hours hot, 50 hours cold Colours: 8