The Great Sippy Cup Search
UPDATE on the HUGE zippy cup search! (Originally posted two years ago!!! Ancient news in baby land!) Now, two toddlers later, here are my recommendations for the best zippy cups, and what we are using now. This post gets a lot of traffic, so I felt it warranted a revisit since writing it, and now, having two toddlers who are actively sipping!
We really gravitated to and have loved the Zoli cups! We discovered them at Real Baby in Cherry Creek, probably very shortly after writing this post originally. We pretty much stuck to these for water, we don't put juice in zippy cups as it has been proven by dentists to cause cavities. On occasion, we allow juice, watered down, and only as a treat at meals, but never sipped on throughout the day. This is our personal parenting choice. We have found the smaller Zoli bottles to be better than the 9 oz. bottles! The larger ones seemed to crack from the dishwasher or something. I ordered the taller ones thinking they would be better for holding more water so I wouldn't have to refill as much but had a couple crack. We still have, and use on occasion the 6 oz. Zoli cup as seen here. It has a weighted ball system so it sucks up all the liquid, using a straw feature. You can purchase replacement straws, which I did have to do as my eldest daughter did have abad habit of chewing on the ends. They also come with a minuscule straw brush. Easy to clean, and they don't leak or spill.
After Zoli, having been disappointed by the larger bottles, I decided to try the Lollaland Lollacups that I had also spotted at Real Baby. See them here too. They are slightly more expensive, but the investment is worth it! You can twist off the handles and toddlers can practice holding a cup. My girls still use the handles on at 3.5 and 2 years old, but are testing the waters with twisting the handles off here and there. These sometimes have a tendency to have a slow drip if upside down in a bag, but I usually wedge them into my purse or bag upright and have minimal leakage. They are easy to clean, hold and sip. I only use them for water and have not heated them up with any liquids in a microwave. They withstand the dishwasher heat just fine without warping.
For milk you wonder? Yes, we give our children milk! We loved the idea of the ball system on the Loli bottles, but didn't want to expose them to microwave heat over and over, even though it is probably not recommended to heat up milk in the microwave in a plastic bottle, we do warm the milk up for short increments, 30 seconds in this bottle; Munchkin Click Lock Weighted. It is similar in design, but is more affordable, like half the cost of the Zoli and Lollacup. We have two. One leaks, the liquid will spew out the straw after we heat the milk and twist on the top. Something about the pressure, but the other bottle doesn't do it- weird. I deal with the spewing milk but am THIS close to just tossing the one and trying to buy another.
We have this one too, by Oxo Tot, but it hasn't been a hit. It comes with two lids- one is the hard plastic raised lip, zippy cup lid and the other is a twist on lid with opening all around to allow water to flow like a cup, supposed to train to drink out of a cup, but not really a fan of the small size and the water pours out all around when they tip to drink. THIS training cup is MUCH better, also by Munchkin. The liquid does not come out unless the child sucks on the lip. Does not leak or spill- really good! We don't use these as much as the straw cups, but trying to use these when at home more- just reminded myself to pull them out!
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If you have a baby or toddler, then I am guessing you have "the" drawer. Or "the" cupboard. You know the one. The one you dread opening for fear your toe will be bruised with crap falling out, or the one that says, "hi, here's a ton of wasted money...tee her hee..." whenever you open it. I am talking about these darn sippy cups.
I am sure when you do a quick internet search on the topic a ton of other "mommy" bloggers come up with their takes on it too, like this one I came across from Momma Words. So, I have only tried four so far. I have an eleven month old. The fifth I guess is her bottle which is what we use because all of the zippy cups I have bought suck, literally and figuratively.
I have this convo with other mom friends and it always goes something like this: Me, "I can't find a good zippy cup. There's something wrong with every one I have tried." Friend, "Have you tried this one?" As they hold their child's zippy cup that clearly works well for them. I always wonder, how many zippy cups are in their drawer. How many have they tried? How long did it take them to find this magical cup, and how many do they possess?
I made a smoothie a couple weeks ago and took it on our walk to the park. My daughter, eyeing what momma is drinking, gestures for a taste. Low and behold we discover she can suck from this straw! Cool! So maybe the next one I try is with a straw. Well, it must be the right diameter and texture of straw because I tried the smoothie thing again yesterday and used a little plastic cup from a restaurant with the accordion straw they give you in the lid, and it was too wide and she had no idea what to do and pulled it out, but when I handed her my cup with that same orange straw from a couple weeks back, thinner, she was able to suck through it. Huh?
Here's my lowdown on the sippy cups I have tried so far, and a couple I aim to try out in the coming weeks. Left to right, top to bottom.
The Philips AVENT Soft Spout Cup with Handles. I have heard from a couple of mom friends, that's you Mimi and Dima, that this works great for your babes. I love that it is small and manageable in size, has handles and has a soft nipple. Not sure about flow or how heavy or light this will be for my little one, but I think this could be a winner.
Nuby 9-Ounce Insulated Clik-It Cool Sipper. Too advanced. Hubby picked this up on a Target trip after I asked him to get a sippy cup to try giving water. This might have been too advanced for her when we initially bought it, around 6 months I believe, and I have tried it a few times since and it still doesn't seem to suit her. Too tall, no grip, too heavy of a flow. She ends up choking. Not a fave, although I do like the mouth spout shape and texture on this one. Soft, rubbery and a perfect mouth guard type shape. I may try this one again when she is older.
Boon SWIG Short Spout Top Sippy Cup. I found these on a flash sale site back in December, after the above mentioned cup attempt failed, and in an effort to have a cup that goes well on the go without spilling as we were traveling. Fancy look, and the lid does twist and cover nipple, but the nipple is oddly shaped and the liquid does not come out. Seems to require advanced sucking skills.
Munchkin 10oz. Click Lock Insulated Sippy Cup. Too hard. Now I am sounding like the narrator for the story, "Three Little Bears," over here! The nipple is hard plastic like the lid. Again, it is too tall, and there isn't a good grip on this one. It's terrible actually. I mostly keep them around for the cups, sans lids, for my four year old nieces or guests who are children.
Tommee Tippee Explora Spill Proof Training Cup I thought that since we were able to get her to drink water from the Tommee Tippe bottles, she didn't take milk from a bottle until eleven months, and that was from a Como Tomo, then these zippy cups from the same brand were going to be golden, plus they had handles and they were cute! WRONG. The nipple is VERY hard, although it is rubbery. She can pick it up easily, and I love the cap feature for spill proof on the go, but the flow doesn't seem right for her yet.
Last, I want to try one with a soft straw like this one from mOmma. It looks small and manageable and hopefully this straw is soft and just the right size.
So there you have it. A picture of what $40, give or take, looks like in sippy cups. At about $6-$10 a pop in average, it adds up quick trying these things out. For hygiene purposes, this is something I choose to buy new rather than find thrifted or consigned or donated. Now I want to hear from you! What sippy cup do you recommend I try?
As always friends, thanks for reading and sharing your thoughts!