Portable Potables: 12 Best Water Bottles

Jun 26, 2018

Category: Gear

When it comes to water-bottles, certain properties are universally preferable. The ability to keep your beverage cool for extended periods of time, to resist exploding into a thousand shards when dropped, a wieldy and non-cumbersome shape that makes your bottle perfectly portable. But when you examine the wide array of water bottles on the market, you see that there is a great amount of variation – of materials, of features, of purpose.

We’ve sifted through the stream of water receptacles for you, to create this list of the perfect portables of potability, the best water bottles on the market – and how they differ from their competition. But before we get to all that, take a moment to read a bit about why having a water bottle that you can reuse is so important for the world.

The Importance Of Reusing Water Bottles

Having a reusable water bottle isn’t just a useful practice, it’s an important contribution to the reduction of plastic pollution worldwide. Around the globe, One million plastic water bottles are purchased every minute.  Most of those bottles won’t be discarded of properly. In fact, National Geographic reports that 91% of water bottles are not recycled and instead end up in landfills. Water Bottles are flooding our rivers and oceans; the Ellen MacArthur Foundation predicts that by 2050, their will be more plastic detritus in our waters by weight than there are fish. By choosing to purchase a reusable water bottle, you not only save yourself money in the long run, but you contribute to the reversal of the pollution that threatens ecosystems globally.


Many plastic bottles on the market are made with an industrial chemical called bisphenol A, frequently shortened to BPA. Exposure to this chemical has some negative side effects, so whenever buying a plastic water bottle, make sure that it’s 100% BPA free. We’ve done that legwork for you, so you can trust that none of the bottles on this list contain BPA. That’s just one of many reasons to switch from disposable plastic water bottles to reusable ones. Recent studies have suggested that the plastic one-and-done water bottles you purchase can contain plastic particles that consumers unwittingly ingest. These studies also suggest that those particles can disrupt the consumer’s endocrine system, and increase the likelihood of infertility, breast and prostate cancer. Make the switch today – if not for the world at large, then for your own health! Take a look at these options below, and consider committing to a more permanent water bottle today.

Nalgene Tritan Wide Mouth

Best Aquality: Reliability. Nalgene is one of the most trusted names in water bottles, a brand that began from the movement of conservationism, which sought to lessen the amount of plastic pollution in the ecosystem.

The Full Pour: This 32-ounce wide mouth water bottle is the ultimate companion for a day of exploration. Ideal for camping, hiking, and mounting expeditions through unknown territories, the Tritan Wide Mouth holds plenty, so you can stay hydrated. Unlike many plastic water bottles, the Nalgene is 100 percent BPA-free, yet forged of durable,  shatterproof plastic that won’t chip as you’re rappelling down a mountainside. Lightweight at just 6.25 oz (unfilled), this bottle, while large, is easy to carry and won’t get in the way of your adventures.

Purchase: $10

Vapur Element

Best Aquality: Collapsibility. Able to be collapsed and flattened when empty, the Vapur Element is the most wieldy of the bottles on this list.

The Full Pour: This collapsible, made-in-the-USA, fully BPA free water bottles is an essential must-have item for those who like to travel light. Hydrate without having to lug anything around, or worry about a bottle dangling from a carabiner swinging the wrong way as you’re hoofing it. The ultra durable BPA-free 3-Ply material from which the Vapur Element is made is totally dishwasher safe, too, and environmentally friendly. It boasts being 87% lighter than any other water bottle, as light as vapor itself. You can also freeze it if you’ like, to ensure your water stays ice cold as it thaws throughout the day; or use it as a convenient ice pack if you’d rather.

Purchase: $10

HydraPak Stash

Best Aquality: Versatility. The Hydrapak has the rigidity of a typical water bottle, but can also flatten when empty to make room in your pack.

The Full Pour: Hydrapak boasts some innovation to make your life a lot easier. It has the collapsibility that you crave – not quite as completely flattenable as the Vapur Element’s, but close – plus a solid 750 mL of volume. Twists and turns do not phase the Hydrapak. It can be squeezed, pulled and wrought any which way, but it will still remain strong, thanks to its elastic Thermoplastic Polyurethane material, stretchy and abrasion-resistant.

Purchase: $20

Lifestraw Go

Best Aquality: Technology. The amazing LifeStraw properties ensure you won’t get sick when drinking from local sources.

The Full Pour: The LifeStraw Go is more than a water bottle, it’s a life preserver. Venture deep into the wilderness with the comfortable knowledge that if things go awry, you’ll have a backup plan. The LifeStraw’s incredible hollow fiber membrane water filter allows one to drink natural water sources without the contaminants, like bacteria and protozoa. Without using any chemicals, the LifeStraw removes 99.9999% of waterborne bacteria, and 99.9% of waterborne protozoan parasites as you drink. This is an essential tool for anyone who ventures off the beaten path.

Purchase: $45


While the above-mentioned plastic water bottles don’t contain the deleterious industrial compound BPA, it is true that plastic necessarily does contain some chemicals. But unlike the plastic receptacles, glass bottles are constructed of all-natural, sustainable materials. Glass is one of the only materials that is generally considered by entities like the U.S. Food & Drug Administration to be totally safe. Synthetic compounds always invite some risk, even if seemingly negligible. In the end, some people simply prefer a glass product, and there are plenty within the water-bottle realm from which to select.

Contigo Purity

Best Aquality: Leak-Proof. Contigo as a company began with a completely leak-proof coffee mug, and that quality has perfused the rest of its products.

The Full Pour: A cheap and quality option for those looking to steer clear of plastic products, the Contigo Purity has a simple, straightforward and utile design. With a stylish silicone sleeve and a strap for your backpack, the Contigo is an attractive accessory to have hanging from your daypack’s carabiner.

Purchase: $15

Takeya Classic

Best Aquality: Aesthetic and Durable. The biggest complaint about any glass product is the fear of breakages. With the Takeya classic, don’t fear incurring cracks

The Full Pour: Like the Contigo, the Takeya Classic is a reliable glass bottle outfitted with a silicon sleeve for grip and aesthetic. But Takeya is known better for making quality water bottles, and their Classic staple product is built to endure most anything. With an excellent grip, which doubles as a shock absorber should you drop the water bottle accidentally, the Takeya has an attractive, contemporary look. A wide mouth opening lets you tilt back and really guzzle. With a nice weight-balance and ideal circumference, the Takeya Classic lets you get a good handle on your thirst.

Purchase: $15

Zulu Atlas

Best Aquality: Rugged. The extra-thick annealed material with which the Zulu Atlas is made is designed to be the strong, fibrous material that you need.

The Full Pour: Extra-thick annealed glass and a silicone sleeve endow the Zulu Atlas with a strength unrivaled by most other glass bottles. As Zulu says, the Atlas is “built to take a hit.” Glass is generally preferred for its taste-neutral properties over plastic and metals, which can lend a bit of added flavoring to the liquid they hold, and the Atlas boasts that its flavor neutrality is nonpareil. Plus, a one touch lid opening allows easy access to the thirst-quenching liquid you crave, and instant re-sealing. But the selling points on this bottle are its cool aesthetic, and its shock-proof exterior. Don’t go around spiking it like a football, but the Atlas should stand up to any incidental crashes and drops it experiences.

Purchase: $15

LifeFactory Classic

Best Aquality: General Quality. Everything just works with the Lifefactory Classic.

The Full Pour: A product of general quality, the Lifefactory Classic has everything one needs out of a water bottle. Open wide and gulp it down when you’re feeling dehydrated, or easily drop in some ice cubes with the Lifefactory Classic. Or, steep a teabag in the wide opening with ease. When you’re on the go, screw on the flip cap, and ensure that no spillage will occur. A medical-grade silicone sleeve protects the bottle from breaking if it takes a tumble. There’s nothing wrong with this Lifefactory bottle. Slim and compact, the Classic will become an excellent companion.

Purchase: $25


When it comes to durability, no product can compete with the mettle of metals. A product forged of stainless steel will always be stronger than one made of plastic or glass. Unlike glass, metal is known not to be taste-neutral. Everyone probably knows that tinny taste of water drawn from a stainless steel water-bottle, like a penny dropped on your tongue. But metal water bottles are strong, durable, and aesthetically pleasing to the eye, even if they aren’t quite as flavorfully fulfilling as other materials. While strong and not liable to shatter, metal bottles still can incur dents, so keep an eye out.

Klean Kanteen Stainless Steel

Best Aquality: Volume. The Klean Kanteen Stainless steel can hold a whole 40 oz. of water – or whatever – for you. With 40 oz., you have plenty of freedom.

The Full Pour: The Klean Kanteen Stainless Steel a single-walled stainless steel container, meaning it will not keep your water insulated. However, with so much room for storage, what it lacks in insular capabilities, it makes up for in sheer volume. With its large 2.125 inch opening, you can drink deeply from this veritable wellspring. An electropolished interior fights back against metal’s tendency to retain or impart flavors on your beverage.

Purchase: $30

Zojirushi Stainless Steel Mug

Best Aquality: Double Walled Insulation. Cold stays cold, hot stays scalding.

The Full Pour:  The most prominent feature of the Zojirushi Stainless Steel Mug is its heat-retention. Double-Walled Insulation preserves temperature, and Zojirushi is so confident in its product’s properties that it offers a five year warranty on heat retentionThe Zojirushi is capable of being disassembled with relative ease, so you can sponge off and expunge any contaminants that might have gotten stuck in the apparatus. With something that you use so frequently, it’s vital that a product be highly cleanable, so no bacteria or contaminants build up. No more worrying about gunk gumming up the works.  A compact design takes minimal space, but has an impressive, 20 oz. capacity for its relatively slim silhouette.

Purchase: $31

Sigg Traveler

Best Aquality: Strength. The Sigg Traveler is made from a single piece of aluminum. No welds to be worn down and broken, no pre-formed holes to discover. This thing is a marble slab.

The Full Pour: The Traveler from Sigg is a classic design from the Swiss company that made its name by making ultra-durable water bottles. Famously, Backpacker Magazine declared Sigg the “world’s toughest water bottle” by firing golf balls at a Sigg product with a 100-pound cannon. It withstood the punishment, and the Traveler is built to withstand similar travails. The 1.0L aluminum single walled bottle is lightweight, tough, and expertly engineered to last eternally – or close to it.

Purchase: $31

Hydro Flask Growler

Best Aquality: Fresh beer anywhere. Be the life of the party this summer! What’s cooler than being cool?

The Full Pour: With a volume of 64-ounces, a leakproof cap, and a double-walled, vacuum insulated TempShield Insulation, the same technology used in all Hydro Flask products, this Hydro Flask Growler is man’s best friend. Coming in two sizes, 32 and 64 ounces, the Growler will keep your beer cold for 24 hours, guaranteed. An exterior powder coat lends traction to your grip, so you don’t drop the dang thing once you’ve had a few. It’s the summer of the growler – so get ahead of the curve.

Purchase: $65

Liquid Life: 12 Best Survival Water Filters

If you are looking to venture way out there, you’ll need more than just a water-bottle. You’ll need something to keep the contaminants at bay. Take a look at this list of 12 Best Survival Water Filters, and live to drink another day.

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