Updated July 2022
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Buying guide for best glassware sets

Every now and then, it’s time to get a new set of glassware. For your everyday drinking and mealtime beverages, you may want something casual or something fancy. Choosing a glassware set may seem pretty straightforward, but there are quite a few features you should consider.

For example, you must decide how many glasses to buy and the glass size you prefer. And, of course, there’s the matter of style. You might want simple, clear glasses that go with everything, or you might want something a little more eccentric.

At BestReviews, our aim is to put an end to your shopping dilemmas. If you’re ready to buy a glassware set or two, we invite you to look at our favorite sets featured above. If you’d like to know a bit more about glassware before making a decision, continue reading this guide.

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If plain glass is a little too boring for your taste, try a colored or etched glassware set that imparts a bit of personality to your kitchen.

Types of glassware

The market offers lots of beautiful cooler glasses, highball glasses, and juice glasses. Here’s a look at the characteristics of each type of glassware.

Highball glasses

A highball glass is similar to a cooler glass with a tall, thin shape. However, a highball glass is usually smaller, holding just eight to 12 ounces.

While it’s often used for cocktails, it works well for everyday beverages like water and soda, too.

Cooler glasses

A cooler glass has a tall, narrow body and typically holds 12 to 14 ounces.

It’s ideal for most beverages, including water, soft drinks, iced tea, and lemonade.

Juice glasses

A juice glass is a small, squat glass designed mainly for drinking juice.

It typically holds five to seven ounces, and it also works well for milk or other beverages which you don’t necessarily want to drink in large quantities.

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Did you know?
Glassware that has a heavier feel is usually more durable. Lightweight glass breaks and chips more easily.

Glassware set considerations

Variety of glasses

Some glassware sets contain a single glass style. For example, a four-piece set might contain all cooler glasses. However, other sets contain more than one style.

For a example, a 12-piece set might contain four cooler glasses, four highball glasses, and four juice glasses.

For most people, the size of the glass is more important than the style. As long as the glasses are large enough, you might not care whether you have all cooler glasses or all highball glasses.

However, it’s best to avoid sets that contain only juice glasses because they’re smaller in size and not the most versatile option.

Glass design

Some glassware sets feature embellished designs that make them more decorative. Common glass designs include the following.

  • Colored glass

The glass may be tinted all over or feature colored bands for a fun look.

  • Banded glass

The glass has a silver or gold band along the rim for an elegant look.

  • Textured glass

The glass is textured in some type of pattern, such as a pebbled or bubble design.

  • Etched or frosted glass

The glass has a semi-opaque, textured finish. There may be a design or pattern carved into it.

Tempered glass

For the most durable glassware, choose a set made of tempered glass. During its manufacture, tempered glass is heated and then cooled quickly. This process makes the glass heat-resistant.

A tempered glassware set can be used for both cold and hot beverages. In some cases, the glasses may even be microwave- and freezer-safe.

Ease of cleaning

Few people enjoy doing the dishes, so you probably want a glassware set that’s easy to clean. If you have a dishwasher, you may want to choose a set that is dishwasher-safe.

Number of glasses

Glassware sets vary in size from four to 24 glasses.

The size that works best for your kitchen depends on the number of people in your household and how often you entertain.

  • For people who live alone, a four- to six-glass set is usually sufficient.

  • For a small family, a six- to 12-glass set typically works well.

  • For a large family, a 12- to 18-glass set is usually a good choice.

  • If you frequently entertain large groups, a 24-glass set can help accommodate all of your guests.

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Did you know?
For most households, 12 everyday drinking glasses is a good number.

Glassware set prices

Glassware set price tags run the gamut from $10 to $70. Cost varies based on several factors, including the number of glasses in the set and the quality of the materials and design.

  • Budget-friendly

A set of four to six glasses typically costs between $10 and $20.

  • Mid-range

A set of six to 10 glasses typically costs between $20 and $40.

  • Expensive

A set of 12 to 18 glasses typically costs between $40 and $70.

Cleaning and storage tips

Tips for cleaning your glassware

  • Wash your glassware carefully. Even if your set is dishwasher-safe, it’s a good idea to use the delicate wash cycle to protect the glass. Space the glasses carefully on the rack so they don’t clink against one another during the cycle.

  • Avoid using a heated drying cycle. The heat can damage some types of glass.

  • Hand-wash items one at a time. It may be tempting to multi-task and clean more than one glass at once, but this could end in breakage.

  • Use a sponge or soft foam brush when washing your glasses. These materials are gentler on glass than some other hand-washing choices.

Tips for storing your glassware

  • Store glasses upside down in your cabinets. This prevents dust from collecting inside them.

  • Avoid storing glassware in a cabinet that’s prone to humidity or extreme temperatures. Atmospheric extremes could damage the glass.

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When it comes to everyday glassware, it doesn’t hurt to have more than one set. That way, you won’t find yourself washing glasses constantly.


Q. Can I use a glassware set for both cold and hot beverages?

A. It depends on the glassware. Not all glasses can handle hot beverages. When boiling water comes into contact with some types of glass, the glass can actually shatter.

If you want to use your glassware for both hot drinks and cold beverages, choose a set that is specifically designated as heat-resistant, so it can withstand higher temperatures.

Q. What type of glassware set is best for children?

A. For older children who you can trust with drinking glasses instead of plastic cups, it’s best to exercise caution. Choose a set made of tempered glass – it’s less likely to chip or crack than traditional glass. And if tempered glass does break, it shatters into large, even pieces rather than small, jagged pieces, so it’s easier to clean up safely.

You may also want to choose glasses that have a textured grip. This makes it easier for children to hold and handle them.

Q. I don’t have much storage space for glasses. What features should I look for in a glassware set?

A. Look for glasses that can be stacked. In cramped quarters, using as much vertical space as you can is helpful indeed.

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