If you are at all like me… when it was time to introduce a sippy cup to my son I stared blankly at my pediatrician and said, “Already, he’s so young!”
A baby who’s ready to sit up in a high chair (usually at about 6 months) is ready to learn how to drink from a sippy cup. This is an important step that you don’t want to miss as a parent because if you wait too long it will be harder to break the bottle habit later (around 12 months is recommended) and a 6 month old is a lot less stubborn than a toddler so sooner is better than later.
When selecting a sippy cup there are a few things you want to consider:
- Look for something sturdy, it will most likely be thrown to the floor repeatedly
- Spill proof – you don’t want to have to clean the floor every time to cup is thrown or knocked over
- Handles – for the first cup try one with handles, this makes it easy to grab
- BPA free – if your cup is plastic make sure it is BPA free
- Have more than one style of cup – sippy cups are a great transition from the bottle to a regular cup but there are some concerns that overuse can cause slowed mouth development and tooth decay, have a mix of sippy cup and straw cup options and don’t forget to let your little one try a sip from your water glass from time to time.
- Remember to change your cup as your child ages. Just like nipples on a baby bottle, some of the cups are designed with an age range in mind.
- Spout material – for the first cup look for a soft spout rather than a hard spout, this is closer to a bottle and more familiar – it will also prevent tears from contact with the hard spout which can happen if your baby is teething. You can move to the harder spout ounce your baby has mastered the sippy or is no longer teething.
Once you go over the checklist it seems easy to pick a cup, but when you walk into your local baby superstore, you will find yourself standing in front of a 20ft wall covered in more sippy cups than you know what to do with which can be both overwhelming and confusing. For this reason here are Urban Pacifier’s picks for best sippy cups:
Nuby No Spill cup with Super spout – this cup is a perfect starter sippy. It has 2 handles a soft silicone spout and the spout is one piece with no-spill technology that promotes good oral health and natural drinking.
Philips Avent Toddler Spout cups – a great starter sippy for parents who are worried about keeping the sippy spout clean. This sippy has an attached cover that can’t get lost and keeps the spout clean when tossed in a bag. This may not be for everyone, as your child might want to play with the lid – but you can take it off the hinge if you find it getting in the way.
Zoli Bot – if your little one doesn’t like to tilt their head back to drink they may prefer this straw sippy. The Zoli Baby straw is better than it’s competitions straws because there is a weighted ball at the end of the straw which allows it to move to the bottom no matter what angle your child is holding the cup. This cup also has handles and a built in lid making it easy for both mom and baby. The product says 9+ months but many parents have had success with this as early as 6 months.
Kid Basix Safe Sippy – this cup can be used as a sippy cup or with a straw (included) and has removable handles. This durable stainless steel cup can grow with you child.
OXO Tot Sippy cup – This is the ultimate in sippy cups once your child is ready to move on from the silicone spout – it comes with multiple configuration options it comes with a sippy lid, training lid, removable handles, leak proof valve, and converts to a regular cup once you are done with all of the configurations making it last through pre-school.
Travel or Emergency Back-up Sippy
This is the perfect cup to leave in your car or diaper bag, so you always have a sippy on hand just in case you forget or lose a sippy cup. The lightweight cups have twist on lids, making them more secure than other snap –on lid disposable sippys.
The First Years Smart Sipper Spill-proof Insulated cups – This cup is for the child that no longer needs handles. With the slightly more sophisticated user this cup is great because it doesn’t have any extra parts like most sippy cups on the market. This cup uses a silicone vent system to prevent leaks, and a see through bottom to help parents see what is in the cup.
Playtex Insulator Cups – This no handled sippy cup is for the slightly more advanced sipper. The cup is insulated so it will keep drinks cold and will not sweat in your bag or leave rings on your furniture. This cup has very few parts making it easy to clean and use – you can also pick from many designs so your child can get their favorite characters on their cups.
Tommee Tippee Explora 9oz Drink Cups – This cup is boasted as the most leak proof on the market. With it’s insulated cooler and innovative spout, many children find these easy to drink from. Parents be warned you need to read the instructions (or watch the video) to make sure you put it together correctly or they will leak.
The No-spill Cup after the Sippy
Playtex Coolster Tumbler – This is a great cup for the toddler that no longer needs a sippy and is drinking from a cup. This insulated cup feels grown up but still has the no-spill feature many parents are looking for.