Does your search for the best sippy cups have you feeling like you might need a drink?
With so many choices out there, how can you ever know which cup will work best for your child?
Some cups are so expensive you feel like they should be made out of crystal instead of plastic or silicone. And you’ve heard horror stories from other moms about leaks and dangerous materials being used. Why can’t anything about parenthood ever be simple?
Don’t worry. I’ve got your back. This guide will lead you to your dream cup and it won’t be long before you’ll be toasting to your success.
|Product||Best For||Our Rating|
|1. MAM Trainer||Breastfed Babies|
|2. Munchkin Hello Kitty||Insulated|
|3. Munchkin Miracle 360||Toddlers|
|4. Philips Avent||Training Cup|
|5. nuSpin Kids Zoomi||With Straw|
|6. Munchkin Alphabet||Milk|
|7. Green Sprouts||Glass|
|8. Klean Kanteen||Organic|
|9. Pura Kiki||Insulated Steel|
|10. NUK Blue Turtle||Silicone|
When Should My Child Start Using Sippy Cups?
Sippy cups are used to transition your baby from the bottle to a real cup. Babies can’t quite handle the power yet of carrying around a regular cup because you’d be cleaning up spills and changing their outfits all day. That’s where sippy cups come in handy — they cut down on spills and your frustration level.
Ideally, your child won’t be taking bottles past the age of 1. That’s the cutoff for a couple reasons. First off, it helps protect their developing teeth if they aren’t using a bottle (source). Secondly, if you wait much longer than that, you’re going to be in for the fight of your life trying to get your child to give up their bottle. They’ll get too attached to their bottles and you’ll have to struggle to wean them off of them.
But if your baby can’t do it by the time they are 1, you should definitely try to have them completely off their bottles by 18 months old.
To get them used to the sippy cup before you yank away their bottle, you should introduce it months before. Some babies are ready for an introduction as early as 6 months old. If your child isn’t ready then, you should try it no later than around 9 months to give them time to become comfortable with it by their first birthday.
Are There Any Dangers to Using Sippy Cups?
With proper supervision, sippy cups are a great tool. They help prepare your child to handle a normal cup.
But if you aren’t careful, sippy cups can cause some problems too, just as bottles can.
The potential downside of sippy cups is that they can injure kids who decide it would be a good idea to drink from their cups as they walk. The spouts are inside their mouths and if they fall while walking and trying to get a drink, the spout can cut their face or the inside of their mouths.
For that reason, you should encourage your child to sit down while using a sippy cup.
How Many Sippy Cups Should I Buy?
You will want several sippy cups for your child. With my child, I had about 10 sippy cups. I kept most of them at home, but I always kept two in my child’s diaper bag at all times. That was more than I needed — you can get by with less, but I’d recommend having at least six.
If you only have three or four, you’ll have to constantly be washing them. That’s fine if you don’t mind keeping them clean and making sure you don’t lose them, but having extra ones really took the pressure off of me.
How Can I Help My Child Make The Switch To a Sippy Cup?
By paying attention to the finer details you’ll be able to help smooth the transition from bottle to sippy cup.
Here is how you do it.
- Go with a sippy cup that has a soft mouthpiece because it will be what your baby is used to with the bottle or with your nipple if you’re breastfeeding (source).
- Help your baby by showing her how to use the cup.
- Although you don’t want any more spills to clean up, you don’t want to find a cup that’s super hard to get any liquid out of. If your baby is struggling to form a tight enough suction to get any of his drink, he’ll give up on the cup. It’s better to go with one that will let him get some liquid with a little effort.
- Start with water instead of juice or milk if you’re worried about the mess. It’ll make clean-ups much easier if you don’t have stains on your carpet or sticky floors to contend with.
- Try two or three different types. There are so many choices out there that you don’t have to keep using a sippy cup you and your child hate. Don’t give up if your baby doesn’t want to take the first one you pick out for them.
What Should I Look For in a Sippy Cup?
Picking out a sippy cup can be difficult, but it’s easier if you know what you’re looking for. I found that out the hard way when I tried to pick out sippy cups for my daughter. I just grabbed a pack in the store one day without putting any thought into it at all. I went for the cheapest ones.
That bargain wasn’t such a bargain after all. My daughter had destroyed the spout on those cheap cups by the end of the first week by biting on them furiously. I had to replace the pack I had bought, but obviously I didn’t get the same kind.
I put more thought into it and asked a friend what kind of cup her child had been using. She led me to one she loved and, although it was pricier than the cups I had bought, they were well worth the money because they held up until my baby was ready to transition to real cups.
Keep these features in mind when looking for a cup your baby will love:
- Hard or soft spout: If you think your baby is going to refuse the sippy cup, go with the soft mouthpiece. If your child has shown interest in normal cups already, you should be able to start with a harder spout if you want. For my baby, I bought both types. I started using the soft ones and transitioned her after a couple months to the harder type because I knew she was ready for something closer to a real cup.
- What position your baby’s tongue will have to be in to make the cup work: To avoid potential problems with your child’s speech development, any sippy cup they use should not require their tongue to come out of their mouth. Their tongue should stay inside their mouth (source).
- What material it’s made out of: You can find sippy cups made out of many different materials. You can buy plastic, silicone, latex, stainless steel, glass and aluminum cups. If you’re still shaken over the BPA controversy and you think plastic may be harboring other harmful chemicals, you can go with a material that has been used longer, like glass.
- Handles or no handles: Sippy cups come either way, so that really depends on what you think your baby would do better with. For many babies, cups with handles are easier to pick up. For me, buying a cup with handles was the only way to go — it stopped my baby from dropping her cup every five seconds.
- If you want leak proof or not: Leak-proof sippy cups are convenient for busy moms who don’t need another mess to clean up, but they can be frustrating for kids who don’t want to work that hard for a drink. You’ll need to figure out how much of a mess you can live with before choosing a sippy cup. If you have nice carpets in your home, you may want to use leak-proof cups because toddlers don’t usually report when they’ve made a mess. You don’t want to find stains later if you aren’t closely monitoring their cup usage.
The Best Sippy Cups of 2018
Now that you know about the potential dangers of sippy cups, how many you’ll need, and exactly what to look for —
Here ares our top 12 picks in 2018:
This transition cup is made for babies from four months up. It has a soft silicone spout so it won’t feel much different from the bottle for them.
This sippy cup is BPA free and you can put it in the dishwasher to clean it.
The nice thing about this cup is that it is compatible with other Philips Avent bottle and cup pieces. That gives it greater versatility because if you have a piece from your bottle that your baby loves, you can make it work with this cup.
This cup comes with a cap so you can keep it clean whether it’s at home between uses or in your diaper bag. It’s nice to know the spout will stay ready to use.
It has trainer handles so babies will be able to get a grip until they figure out how to hold onto things more securely when they get older.
- It’s an affordable cup.
- The handles are rubberized so they’ll be comfortable for your baby.
- They are compatible with other Philip Avent cups and bottles.
- It is a fatter, wider cup than some children may like.
- The top can be unscrewed fairly easily, which means if you have a smart baby you may have a mess on your hands.
It’s hard to get excited about a cup design, but this one marveled me as soon as I saw it. Instead of a traditional spout, this cup has a 360-degree drinking edge. So your toddler won’t have to worry about latching onto a mouthpiece to get a sip. He can just pick up his cup and put it up to his mouth without looking.
When your toddler is done taking a drink, the cup automatically seals.
There aren’t any hard-to-reach valves or pieces so this cup is easy to clean. You can either wash it manually or put it in the dishwasher. But you need to make sure you fully take apart the four pieces of the cup each cleaning or you’ll get a black, yucky-looking ring on the lid.
This cup is best for toddlers who are a minimum of 12 months old.
This two-pack of cups comes in several different color combinations so you’ll be covered whether you have a boy or a girl.
- They won’t spill if tipped over (although if you drop them from greater heights, they will spill).
- Your kid can use this sippy cup long after his toddler years are over.
- There is no spout that your kid can potentially get hurt with if he trips while taking a sip.
- These cups cost a little more than some others do.
- You can’t tell how much liquid is still in the cup without taking the lid off.
This sippy cup has a valve-free straw and it’s made without BPA, phthalates, PVC, nitrosamines, latex and lead. So that means the harmful compounds in some baby products aren’t found in this cup.
It’s only three pieces — the base, a lid and a straw. It is safe to put in the top rack of the dishwasher.
This sippy cup is best for kids who are at least 1 year old. You can use it with milk, juice or water. Your child won’t be able to pull out the straw when the lid is on the cup.
The straw is soft because it’s made out of silicone. That means if a child loses their balance and falls while trying to take a sip, the straw won’t injure the inside of their mouth.
The graphics on the cup are protected by a polypropylene barrier so your baby won’t be able to scratch or gnaw them off the cup.
- It’s a cute, gender-neutral cup.
- Your baby can chew on the silicone straw without destroying it.
- The straw won’t hurt the inside of a baby’s mouth if they poke themselves with it.
- For a single cup, the cost is a bit high.
- They don’t come with a lid so they aren’t great for travel.
These sippy cups hold 9 ounces of liquid and they can be used for milk, juice or water.
They have a hard spout and are best for babies who are at least 9 months old.
They use a one-piece spill-proof valve, which means they are easy to clean and you won’t find sticky milk everywhere on your floor. As long as you put the valve in properly, these cups won’t leak.
Your child will be able to get milk out of these cups at a fairly fast rate. You’ll get a two-pack of cups in a blue and orange color.
These cups don’t contain BPA and they can be washed on the top rack of the dishwasher. They are easy to take apart and simple to put back together — you’ll even be able to do it while you have an impatient, thirsty kid demanding a drink.
- They won’t leak.
- They’ll hold up well to the abuse children can deliver — they are durable cups.
- They’ll fit in cupholders in cars because they aren’t too wide.
- They don’t come with a lid.
- The last ounce or so is really hard to get out of the cup because of how they are designed.
This sippy cup comes with a cap to protect from spills whether you’re at home or in the car. The cap also works as a measuring cup.
The cup has handles with a non-slip grip so your baby will be able to hold onto the cup better.
It has a wide opening and base so you’ll be able to fill the cup easily with spilling and it won’t be as tippy as some of the narrower cups.
The nipple is soft and it is spill free, which means you won’t have to spend your precious time mopping up spills — you can spend that time snuggling your child instead. But in addition to the nipple, you also get a spill-free spout for when your baby is ready to take the next step after training with the nipple.
The base of the cup has ounces clearly marked so you can still keep an eye on your child’s milk intake.
- You get both a nipple and spout.
- The cap makes this perfect for taking in the car or in the diaper bag.
- The handles will help babies hold on to the cup.
- If your baby is a chewer, the spout can be destroyed quickly.
- It takes a lot of suction to get much liquid out of this cup.
The base for this four-ounce cup is made of glass and it has a silicone nipple. You can drink from it two ways — the traditional style or tilting it. It comes with both a straw piece and a spout.
Although parts of the cup are also made out of polypropylene and synthetic rubber, the liquid in the cup only touches the parts made out of glass and silicone.
It has a shock-absorbing base in case it is dropped so there is less chance of it breaking. The spout is drip free so you’ll have less mess to deal with.
This cup is BPA and PVC free. It’s easy to clean and is dishwasher safe. Babies as young as four months can begin using this cup.
The handles on the cup are removeable in case your baby does better without them.
- It comes with both a spout and a straw.
- It can be cleaned in the dishwasher.
- Babies can use it from a young age.
- It is an expensive cup.
- Some parents have had problems with the glass breaking with very little impact.
This cup isn’t tainted by the harmful chemicals and compounds you’re trying to avoid. It is made of food-grade stainless steel that doesn’t contain BPA or the other plastic byproducts you’re worried about.
It will never give your child’s drink that awful plastic taste. Plus, the stainless steel won’t smell like the last drink you had in the cup.
You can take the valve off the top of the cup so you can clean it. It can go in the dishwasher or it can be hand washed. The opening is large enough so you can add ice cubes to your child’s drink if you want to.
The cup is thin enough to fit in many cup holders. While it isn’t as lightweight as some of the flimsy plastic cups you can buy, it isn’t too heavy for your child to lift up comfortably either.
- It comes in several different colors to choose from.
- This cup holds 12 ounces, so it’s a good cup for your child to grow with.
- This cup will survive — it won’t break.
- Handwashing is recommended for the colored cups.
- These are expensive.
This cup doesn’t use any plastic and it can grow with your kid. Your child will be able to use the same bottle year after year simply by switching out the lids as he graduates from each stage of drinking.
The bottle comes with a sipper spout, but you can purchase other lids separately, such as a straw and a cap. The cup holds 9 ounces of liquid, so this bottle will always be useful, no matter what your child’s age is.
The cup base is made of food-grade stainless steel and the spout is made of medical-grade silicone. So you don’t have to worry about BPA, BPS, EA, PVC or any other undesirable chemicals making their way into your baby’s drink.
You can put a pretty silicone sleeve over top of the stainless steel body of the cup to give your child more grip.
- You get a travel cover with this cup so you’ll be able to keep the spout clean when your baby isn’t using it.
- You’ll get your money’s worth from this long-lasting bottle if you upgrade the mouthpiece as your child ages.
- The silicone sleeve helps lessen the chances of your baby dropping the cup.
- These cups are expensive.
- You’ll have to replace the sippy lids periodically because they will begin leaking after a couple months of usage.
If you love silicone spouts because of how soft they are on your baby’s mouth, you may want to check out this cup.
This cup is good for kids who are trying to wean away from the bottle because of the soft spout and bottle-like shape of the cup. The spout will be gentle on their teeth and gums as they learn to handle the next milestone.
Kids will love the cheerful and pretty turtle and water design on this cup. Moms will like that it is leak-proof and spill-proof.
It’s light enough that even young babies will have no trouble picking it up. Plus, it holds 10 ounces of liquid so it will be big enough for them to continue to use as they become capable of drinking more liquids.
- It’s an affordable cup.
- It comes with a clip so you can attach it to a diaper bag or purse so it won’t get lost.
- This cup comes with a cap.
- If you have a fierce biter on your hands, he may destroy the spout.
- Your child will have to suck hard to get liquid from this
This two-pack of cups can be used by children who are 9 months and older. The Hello Kitty designs on the cup are sure to please the little girl in your life.
These cups have a click lock leak-proof design and a one-piece valve that won’t spill if the cup gets tipped over. You’ll actually hear a click when you correctly screw the lid on the base, so it takes the guesswork out of whether you have everything lined up properly.
Because the cups are insulated, they will keep your child’s drink cool longer than non-insulated cups will. They’ll also fit into most cup holders, which is nice if your child likes to have water to drink in the car.
They can be cleaned in the dishwasher on the top rack.
These cups have a hard spout, which is nice for parents who have children who bite through the softer spouts.
- They are super affordable.
- They’re easy to clean.
- They keep drinks cold for quite a while.
- If your child likes to gnaw on things, they may end up ingesting little shavings of the hard spout.
- They can warp if you wash them often in the dishwasher.
This cup is easy on a baby’s developing teeth and speech patterns because it doesn’t have a hard spout that has to go in his mouth. It has a flat rim, much like an adult cup would. If you have a child who likes to bite everything, you will appreciate that this rim is bite resistant.
But the design of the cup allows it to be completely leak proof and spill proof. Plus, this cup is so durable your child won’t be able to break it, even when dropping it from the high chair onto the hard ground.
The cup comes in a two-pack and they can be washed in the dishwasher. They are BPA-free, which brings peace of mind to moms who are worried about chemicals entering their baby’s drink.
The cup is insulated and it can keep drinks cooler for approximately six hours.
- The flat rim will help your child transition to regular cups.
- This cup won’t spill or leak its contents.
- The fun patterns are eye-catching so your baby should like it.
- Some parents have had problems with the lids cracking.
This two-pack of cups has a hard spout for parents who like the looks of traditional sippy cups. The spouts are bite resistant, which may be comforting for parents whose children bite everything when they are teething. They are made in the U.S. and they are BPA free.
These cups are guaranteed to be both spill proof and leak proof. Each cup will hold 10 ounces of liquid.
The cups are made for kids who are at least 12 months old.
These are really simple to clean — all you have to do is pop out the valve and put it back in the lid after you’ve cleaned it.
The print on the side of the cups is heavy duty — it doesn’t rub off even after your baby has carried this cup all over the place and even after it has been washed repeatedly.
- The lids screw on well without having to carefully line them up.
- They are affordable.
- These won’t break even when they are forcibly dropped.
- It does require quite a bit of suction to get the liquid out of this cup.
- You have to make sure to take the valve out of the cup every time you clean it otherwise it will grow mold.
My Favorite Is…
If I had unlimited money, my number one pick would be the Klean Kanteen cup because I love the safety of stainless steel. But since most moms I know can’t afford to drop that kind of money on several sippy cups, I’d recommend the Gerber Graduates Advance Developmental Insulated Cup.
I’m not a fan of hard spouts because it’s hard to make sure all the time that your baby isn’t walking around while taking a drink. With this flat rim, there’s less risk of children hurting themselves or ingesting small plastic shavings they gnawed off with their teeth.
I love the design of this cup — it’s spill proof, but it’s not hard to get liquid out of. Since it’s insulated, it will keep your child’s drinks cold.
Whatever sippy cup you choose, just remember to keep offering them whether your child takes them initially or not. Eventually, they’ll get used to them so don’t give up and don’t worry. Some babies just take a little longer than others when it comes to life’s milestones.