The best insulated coffee mugs to warm up to

Mia Kessinger

Whether it is in the form of a cup of coffee or tea, caffeine is a delicious stimulant that many seek throughout the day. However, according to Earth Day Network, 16 billion disposable coffee cups are used every year. In order to reduce personal expenses and help the environment, buying a reusable coffee mug is a much better option. With so many different options on the market, the process of choosing a portable mug can be overwhelming. Here’s a guide for the best portable mugs in terms of durability, spillage, price, style and ability to retain temperature.

Hydro Flask: 4.5/5 stars

Since Hydro Flask has become a major trend in popular culture, I decided to put the brand to the test, and for the most part it impressed. However, Hydro Flasks are not perfect. They are quite expensive, with their coffee mug, or “Tumbler,” prices ranging from $27.95 to $39.95 depending on size. Another major downside to Hydro Flask is their durability: the paint chips and the containers dent easily if dropped. Nevertheless, the benefits outweigh the drawbacks. According to the Hydro Flask website, the tumblers stay cold for up to 24 hours and hot for up to six, which, upon testing, I found to be true. The wide array of colors—with options from “Watermelon Pink” to “Frost Blue” to “Sunflower Yellow”—are perfect to pose with for an aesthetically pleasing Instagram picture. The lids are also very secure, making them very suitable for bumpy car rides to school or long walks between classes, and they offer a range of sizes of 16-, 22- and 32-ounce mugs. Despite the high price, Hydro Flasks’ poor durability and cost are a downside, lowering my ranking to a still formidable 4.5/5 stars.

Yeti: 4/5 stars

Yeti’s Rambler Tumbler With Magslider Lid is slightly more expensive than Hydro Flask’s lowest price, starting at $29.99 for the 20-ounce and $34.99 for a 30-ounce. Although they do come in multiple colors, their options of chartreuse, brick red and clay are not as impressive or appealing as many other brands’. Additionally, their lid openings are large, increasing the likelihood of a spill. However, the magnet on the sliding lid tops are very practical, keeping the lids tightly sealed. Because the bottoms are made of durable metal, dents are uncommon, even when the tumblers are dropped a few times. The double-wall vacuum insulation does an excellent job at keeping beverages’ temperatures for an extended period of time. While Yeti mugs do their job well, I found that Hydro Flasks kept the temperature for a longer period of time, thus Yeti receiving 4/5 stars.

S’well: 3.5/5 stars

Including intricate designs like blue whales, dogs and prickly cacti, S’well’s Travel Mugs do not fail to impress on the outside. While their exteriors are eye-catching, however, their insulation leaves much to be desired. Their website claims the mugs keep beverages hot or cold all day long, but in reality, they keep their contents’ original temperatures for an hour at most. The mugs can also be easily dented, so mishandling them is a bit of a risk, especially when compared to Yeti. Though the only size option is a small 16-ounce cup, the cheaper price of $24.99 compensates for this inconvenience. Furthermore, the “leak-free” top truly does prevent spillage with an airtight twist-on lid, so they are safe to keep in a backpack without worries. Due to lacking in the size, durability and insulation categories, the rating for S’well was only a 3.5/5.