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Best Insulated Tumblers

Updated October 2018
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BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We buy all products with our own funds, and we never accept free products from manufacturers.
BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers.
BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We buy all products with our own funds, and we never accept free products from manufacturers.
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We purchase every product we review with our own funds — we never accept anything from product manufacturers.

  • 27 Models Considered
  • 1 Experts Interviewed
  • 432 Consumers Consulted
  • Zero products received from manufacturers.

    We purchase every product we review with our own funds — we never accept anything from product manufacturers.

    Why trust BestReviews?
    BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We buy all products with our own funds, and we never accept free products from manufacturers.
    BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers.
    BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We buy all products with our own funds, and we never accept free products from manufacturers.

    Shopping guide for best insulated tumblers

    Last Updated October 2018

    For many of us, it’s impossible to start the day without a jolt of energy from a cup of hot, fresh coffee. But mornings are usually busy, so it’s not always possible to enjoy that cup of joe before you leave the house. That means taking some of your homemade brew with you or buying coffee on the way to the office. If you want your coffee to stay hot no matter how long you’re stuck in traffic, an insulated tumbler can be a lifesaver.

    While choosing an insulated tumbler may seem pretty straightforward, not all tumblers are created equal. You have to figure out the best size, material, lid design, and other features for your beverage-drinking habits. Considering the sheer number of insulated tumblers on the market, it can be tough to make sense of all the options.

    That’s where BestReviews comes in. We provide in-depth product research, so you have all the facts you need to choose the best items for your home. We do the work so you can put your time to better use.

    If you’re looking for a new insulated tumbler, you’ll find our top choices in the matrix above. For general tips on selecting an insulated tumbler, keep reading our convenient shopping guide.

    To help an insulated tumbler maintain your beverage’s temperature for as long as possible, fill it with either hot or cold water ten minutes before you plan to add your beverage. The water will warm or cool the cup, so it’s the right temperature before you add your iced or hot drink.

    Insulated tumbler benefits

    Here are some of the reasons to use an insulated tumbler.

    • Temperature retention: The main reason to use an insulated tumbler is its ability to maintain the temperature of whatever beverage you put in it. That means your coffee will stay hot even if you’re cooling your heels in traffic. And it works the same way for cold beverages – your iced tea will stay chilled all the way to the office.

    • Portion control: Insulated tumblers come in various sizes, so you can limit your coffee intake for the day or bring along two servings to help you make it all the way to lunch.

    • Versatility: An insulated tumbler works with both hot and cold beverages, so there’s no limit to what you can carry in it, from hot chocolate to iced lemonade.

    • Convenience: Insulated tumblers have secure lids that make it easy to bring your favorite beverages along without worrying about spills while you drive or walk.

    • Eco-friendly: You can use your insulated tumbler both for coffee from home and beverages from your favorite coffee shop, which means you won’t be using as many disposable cups that will wind up in the landfill.

    • Economical: An insulated tumbler enables you to skip the coffee shop because you can bring coffee from home. If you still want coffee from your favorite barista, bringing your own reusable tumbler could get you a price break on your beverage, too.
    CAUTION

    Wash an insulated tumbler as soon as possible after use. If the residue from coffee, tea, or another beverage is allowed to sit on the surface, the cup can start to absorb the flavor and odor.

    Types of insulated tumblers

    Air insulated

    These tumblers have an air-filled space between the cup’s inner and outer walls to help maintain the interior temperature and prevent condensation on the exterior. This type of tumbler can usually keep drinks hot for up to 2 hours or cold for up to 4 hours.

    Foam insulated

    These tumblers have a layer of foam between the inner and outer walls to effectively maintain the temperature of the beverage. This type of tumbler can usually keep drinks hot for up to 3 hours or cold for up to 6 hours.

    Vacuum insulated

    Vacuum insulated tumblers maintain a beverage’s temperature by providing an airless gap between the cup’s inner and outer stainless-steel walls. This type of tumbler can usually keep drinks hot for up to 8 hours or cold for up to 12 hours.

    Copper vacuum insulation

    These tumblers maintain a beverage’s temperature with an airless area between the cup’s copper-plated inner wall and stainless-steel outer wall. This type of tumbler can usually keep drinks hot for up to 12 hours or cold for up to 16 hours.

    If your insulated tumbler requires hand-washing, a bottle brush makes cleaning it much easier.

    Insulated tumbler features to consider

    Size

    Insulated tumblers are available in a wide array of sizes ranging from 8 to 30 ounces. If you travel by car, make sure that the diameter of the base of the insulated tumbler you choose will fit in your car’s cupholder.

    8 to 10 ounces: Opt for this size if you want to bring a single serving of coffee or another beverage with you on the go.

    12 to 16 ounces: Choose this size if you want to bring two servings.

    18 to 20 ounces: Select this size if you want to bring three or more servings.

    24-ounces or larger: Choose this size if you want to bring four or more servings.

    Material

    Most insulated tumblers are made of either plastic or stainless steel.

    Plastic: If you opt for a plastic tumbler, look for one with a stainless steel interior to provide more effective temperature retention and prevent the absorption of flavors and odors.

    • Usually less expensive

    • Not as durable as steel

    • Less effective at maintaining temperature

    • Can absorb flavors and odors of beverages

    • Can be easier to clean
       

    Stainless steel: For the most effective temperature maintenance, choose a double-walled stainless-steel tumbler.

    • Usually more expensive

    • Highly durable

    • Shatter-proof

    • Highly effective at maintaining temperature

    • Doesn’t absorb flavors and odors of beverages

    • Not microwave safe

    • May not be dishwasher safe

    Lid

    Whether you’re driving or walking to work, you want to be sure that your insulated tumbler won’t leak or spill. In most cases, that comes down to choosing a tumbler with the right lid. For the most security, opt for a model with a screw-on lid that locks in place and won’t come off even if you drop the tumbler. Snap-on lids can pop off if dropped, leading to a messy spill.

    Handle/grip

    Insulated tumblers are available either with or without handles. Some users find that a handle can get in the way and make the tumbler more difficult to carry, while others find it easier to keep a secure hold on a tumbler if there’s a handle to grab.

    Because the exterior of most insulated tumblers is smooth, it can sometimes be difficult to get a good grip on a tumbler without a handle. If you don’t want a handle, look for a tumbler that has a rubberized section around the exterior to make it easier to grip.

    Ease of use

    For an insulated tumbler to be really portable, it should be easy to use while you’re on the go. Look for a model that you can use with one hand, so you can drink your coffee even while driving. Many tumblers have openings that easily slide open and closed, so you can sip your coffee or tea while still keeping a hand on the steering wheel.

    Washability

    Once you’re finished drinking your coffee or tea, you want an insulated tumbler that’s as easy to clean as possible. For the lowest maintenance, choose a dishwasher-safe tumbler that you can wash on the top rack of the dishwasher.

    If you opt for a tumbler that requires hand-washing, look for a wide opening so it’s easy to clean inside, as well as a lid that you can take apart for cleaning.

    EXPERT TIP

    If you find that your insulated mug has absorbed odors, try putting some baking soda in the tumbler and allowing it to sit for two to three days. The baking soda will soak up the odor to help improve the cup’s smell.


    Staff  | BestReviews

    Insulated tumbler prices

    Insulated tumblers vary in price based on the size and the material. In most cases, you can expect to pay between $5 and $50.

    Budget-friendly: Small plastic insulated tumblers that hold approximately 8 to 10 ounces usually range from $5 to $9. Small stainless-steel insulated tumblers that hold approximately 8 to 10 ounces usually range from $10 to $16.

    Mid-range: Midsize plastic tumblers that hold approximately 12 to 20 ounces usually range from $9 to $12. Midsize stainless-steel tumblers that hold approximately 12 to 20 ounces usually range from $16 to $25.

    Expensive: Large plastic tumblers that hold more than 20 ounces usually range from $12 to $22. Large stainless-steel tumblers that hold more than 20 ounces usually range from $25 to $50.

    Insulated tumblers with handles may not fit inside a car’s cupholder.

    FAQ

    Q. Can I put an insulated tumbler in the microwave to heat up my beverage?

    A. Many insulated tumblers cannot be heated in the microwave. Putting a tumbler made of stainless steel in a microwave can damage the microwave. Some plastic insulated tumblers can safely be heated in the microwave, but always check the bottom of the cup or the manufacturer’s specifications to see if it’s safe to do so.

    Q. Can I fill an insulated tumbler directly from my single cup coffee brewer?

    A. Most midsize and large insulated tumblers are too tall to fit beneath the spout on a single-serve coffee machine. Smaller tumblers may fit, but first check the height of any tumbler you’re considering to see if it will clear your machine’s spout.

    Q. What type of insulated tumbler is most effective in keeping hot beverages hot?

    A. When it comes to heat retention, you can’t beat an insulated tumbler made of stainless steel. Look for a model with double-walled construction. You may also want to look for a copper vacuum insulated tumbler, which uses a copper lining to boost the heat -etention properties.

    The team that worked on this review
    • Bronwyn
      Bronwyn
      Editor
    • Devangana
      Devangana
      Web Producer
    • Eliza
      Eliza
      Production Manager
    • Jennifer
      Jennifer
      Writer
    • Katie
      Katie
      Editorial Director
    • Steph
      Steph
      Writer

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