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Living in California where we send the kids back to school in temps up to 100 degrees, one thing the kids cannot do without is a quality water bottle. We’ve probably been through dozens of water bottles over the years, either having to throw them out for being ineffective in keeping anything cold for more than a few minutes, or losing them somewhere on the bus, playground or a number of locations in between (seriously, losing water bottles is my kids’ super power and YES, I label them).

I recently asked my FB friends which quality water bottles they’d recommend and I received no shortage of answers. So to save you time, money and a drawer full of ineffective bottles taking up space, I’ve compiled a list of quality water bottles at pretty much any budget. Note: there are some links on this post that can be defined as “affiliate links”. This means that I may receive a small commission (at no cost to you) if you purchase something through the links provided. However, that has absolutely no bearing on the choices below.



Reduce Cold-1 Stainless Steel Water Bottle ($29.89 for two)

My family has personally used these bottles and always amazed at how long they keep things cold. However, we’ve broken each and every lid to these bottles so I recently purchased new lids at the Reduce website instead of buying brand new bottles. (I’ll keep you posted how long we go without breaking the lid this school year.)


Green Canteen Double Wall Stainless Steel Vacuum Bottle ($12.99)

This affordable choice comes with a straw for easy drinking. Lori says: “Keeps everything super cold all day. I use one too.”



Sub Zero (3 Pack) Double Wall Stainless Steel Vacuum Sealed Sports Bottles with Rubberized Coating (33.30 for the trio)

A three-pack at this price, you’d think they might not keep it cool, but Laura says: “We use these water bottles and we love them, they keep drink a cold as well as hot!”




Contigo AUTOSPOUT Straw Ashland Chill Stainless Steel Water Bottle, 20 oz, Scuba (SALE $14.96)

Mindi and Laura give a big thumbs up to this choice.





Bubba Leak-Proof Double-Wall Vacuum Insulated Stainless Steel Flo Water Bottle ($24.00 and up)

Tiffni says: “Bubba Keg is a great bottle that doesn’t sweat. The snap lid tends to break (cuz kids constantly drop it) but they replace it when u send them a pic.”



Kleen Kanteen Classic Stainless Steel Water Bottle with Kleen Coat, Single Wall and Leak Resistant Sport Cap ($18.95 and up)*

No leaks and easy to drink, although if you’re in super hot temps, it may not keep things ice cold after a couple of hours.



LifeFactory BPA-Free Glass Water Bottle with Flip Cap and Silicone Sleeve ($24.00)*

This one comes highly recommended by environmental advocate Tamara Rubin, but not that the bottle itself is glass so might not be the best choice for that backpack getting knocked around.



$30 AND UP

Planet Box Booster Eco-Friendly Stainless Steel Water Bottle (SALE $29.95) 

Stacy says: “Planet box makes excellent lunch boxes and water bottles. Ours has lasted three years so far.”



s'well water bottle

S’well Vacuum Insulated Stainless Steel Water Bottle ($31.00)

Jean and Alecia swear by S’well. Alecia says, “My kids have them and they fit in the pockets of their backpacks. I love that the mouthpiece is on the smaller side but big enough for ice cubes.”



Hydro Flask Wide-Mouth Insulated Water Bottle ($29.95 and up)*

Hands down, more people recommended the Hydro Flask more than any other bottle. Hilary and Megan  love it. Paula says: “Doesn’t sweat. Keeps water cold all day. Has a selection of different lid types to choose from. This lid does have a plastic straw inside but it comes with a few straws so you can swap for a new straw as needed. That said, my daughter only drinks ice water in hers and she washes the bottle every evening.” Janice suggests purchasing at LL Bean for added personalization.

* Means lead tested and approved by environmental activist Tamara Rubin. For her list of tested water bottles and recommendations, visit TamaraRubin.com.