Battle Of The Sippy Cups

July 30, 2013

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We started giving Mazen water when he was about 7 months old and we went to Arizona for vacation. It was hot and in the dry heat he seemed to be thirsty beyond his breast milk intake. As his solid food consumption has increased over the past 4 months, he now drinks water with his meals and I offer it to him on walks and throughout the day as well.

When we first started offering water we used a bottle because he was familiar with how to drink out of it. That way we could gauge exactly how much water he really wanted rather than using an unfamiliar cup. We have gradually transitioned to a sippy cup, but it’s been a long road finding the best one. For the longest time M couldn’t drink out of it by himself – we had to hold it up to his mouth for him.

Then we discovered THE STRAW. What a genius invention. I can’t remember exactly how M learned to use a straw, but I would let him practice on my adult straws and he seemed to get that pretty quickly. Learning the baby cup straws just clicked for him one day (after lots of straw chewing first!)

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Here are the sippys we have tried and their pros and cons in order of preference:

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Babies R Us brand sippy $4.99

Love: Nothing

Cons: No handles so it’s hard to hold, sippy mouth is hard to sip, leaks from top

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Babies R Us Purely Simple Training Cup $5.99

Love: Baby-friendly top, good handles

Cons: A bit leaky, M couldn’t figure out how to tip it up, not the cheapest

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Munchkin Click + Lock Sippy $3.75

Love: price, the click + lock feature is awesome, big handles

Negative: M doesn’t drink out of it well

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OXO Tot Straw Cup $6.99

Love: straw, awesome locking lid tucks straw away, chic colors

Cons: straw is high flow so it spills out easily but would be good for thicker smoothies and things, price, no handles so hard to hold

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Munchkin Click Lock Flip Straw Cup $4

Love: straw, price, click lock is great, no leaking

Cons: no handles so hard to hold

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Zoli BOT Sippy Cup $12

Love: this was our favorite for a long time. Handles are great, straw is great once M learned to use it, love the straw flip for upside down drinking, if necessary, spill proof, lid is nice

Cons: surprise puddles started leaking from the rim during our Williamsburg trip. A huge negative with fancy cameras and cell phones in the diaper bag! Price is high. Straw is hard to clean (I wouldn’t serve smoothie in this)

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Nubby 2 Handle Flip n Sip Straw Cup $6

Loves: Our current favorite because it has handles, flip straw, no leak and low price

Cons: None so far

So the Nubby wins – for now. I’m sure our preferences will change, and I’m keeping all of these in case Mazen learns to sip the spouts in time.

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Every baby is different, so what’s your #1 sippy?

{ 60 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Brittany (Healthy Slice of Life) July 30, 2013 at 2:47 pm

Oh my gosh I love all the cups!! Haha.
I heard people swore by the zolibot, but that one leaks everywhere for us. Our current favorite (at 22 months) is the Munchkin Click Lock Flip. No spills or leaks :)

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2 Shel@PeachyPalate July 30, 2013 at 2:53 pm

Amazing post! That is one hell of a lot of sippy cups to go through! If at first you don’t succeed….buy another sippy cup! :)

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3 Nicole July 30, 2013 at 2:55 pm

Thank you so much for this post! We have just the Zoli, and I’m not consistent about using it because Lucy doesn’t always swallow what she sucks out. My only complaint is that the water will draw up the straw and leak if it just sits there- probably due to pressure or something.

I’ve been wanting to try out another one but trying to find the “right” one is daunting, especially since I don’t want to spend a ton of money in doing so. I’ll have to give the Nuby 2 a try! I should also find out what they offer at daycare. Prolly the normal sippy cups that you have to tilt. We were at a friend’s house and they offered her one of those- she was confused about how it worked since she’s never been given one before.

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4 Tiffany July 30, 2013 at 2:57 pm

We have a similar collection of sippy cups while we tried to find the best one for us as well! We’re currently using the Zoli BOT, but I HATE that it ends up leaking (something about the temp change with cold liquid warming up I think?). It works fabulously otherwise and my daughter had a tough time with regular sippy cups without straws so we’re still using it.

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5 Grace July 30, 2013 at 3:00 pm

We got the Zoli as a gift and we LOVE it for our 19 month old. I don’t know if I’d buy it on my own since it’s so expensive, but it’s by far the best sippy for our daughter. The only times we’ve had leaks are user error – putting the lid on incorrectly. If you read the reviews on Amazon, you’ll see the same thing – if the lid is screwed on correctly, it won’t leak. And the ability for our daughter to drink out of it at any angle is great. We do smoothies in our reusable Green pouches instead of a sippy cups, so that’s not an issue for us.
But, I also have to say, that our daughter now prefers open cups at home (we save the Zoli for car rides and going out), so I doubt that Mazen will return to the spout-type cups, since toddlers really prefer open cups as soon as they are able, and it’s a good skill to encourage.

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6 KERF July 30, 2013 at 3:15 pm

I assure you it was not a user error on our part. I’ve heard this happening to others too.

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7 Grace July 30, 2013 at 3:17 pm

Oh, that’s a bummer! Maybe you got a defective one? We’ve had ours for over 8 months now and despite near-daily use (and abuse) from our daughter :) we’ve never had any leaks at all. It’s one of the things I love about it.

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8 KERF July 30, 2013 at 3:37 pm

It seems some have this side leaking problem and some don’t. Puzzling.

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9 Lindsay July 30, 2013 at 4:44 pm

The fact that you’ve heard of it happening to others doesn’t mean it isn’t user error…Just saying.

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10 KERF July 30, 2013 at 4:52 pm

Well I used it with no problems for weeks and then the spills started. It could be a washing/drying/throwing on the floor issue

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11 Andrea July 30, 2013 at 3:00 pm

I think it’s funny how all moms, myself included, try out tons of sippy cups:) Our favorites for our 13 month old are the Nuby one you have and the Playtex Lil’ Grippers. We have the short one with handles and the tall ones without. The key to keeping the Playtex ones from leaking is to make sure you do not put the straw in too far. If it’s in too far it opens the valve. Sounds tricky when writing it out…maybe that’s the issue with the Zoli?

Thanks for the great post!

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12 Shanna July 30, 2013 at 3:56 pm

After trying several fancier versions we finally struck gold with the Take nToss ones. Go figure. We reuse rather than toss and they are so so inexpensive!

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13 Katie G July 30, 2013 at 7:20 pm

Yes to Take and Toss.

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14 Heather July 31, 2013 at 12:46 am

I third the take and toss. We tried a few different types, and they’re actually my daughter’s favorite! And I love that they’re so cheap that I don’t have to worry about losing them :)

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15 TeresaM July 30, 2013 at 4:06 pm

Our son loves the tommee tippee explora ones with the handles. No leaks. He also loves my thermos water bottle, which has a straw.

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16 Ania July 30, 2013 at 4:08 pm

Playtex makes a great straw cup. Has a soft straw and great handles. Our little man loves them!

http://www.amazon.com/Playtex-First-Gripper-Trainer-Colors/dp/B004E2H3PA/ref=sr_1_7?s=baby-products&ie=UTF8&qid=1375214837&sr=1-7

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17 KERF July 30, 2013 at 4:26 pm

That one looks good – I hadn’t seen it yet

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18 Jessica July 30, 2013 at 4:53 pm

We use this one too, and love it!

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19 Liz July 30, 2013 at 5:28 pm

I agree these are our favorite, too! They also have a taller version once you don’t need handles.

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20 Cindy July 30, 2013 at 11:47 pm

We love this one too and have gotten tons of use out of it. We also like the Playtex Sipsters that my son started to figure out at about one year.

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21 samantha August 5, 2013 at 10:24 am

We love this cup as well!

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22 Kristi July 30, 2013 at 9:46 pm

At 7.5mos I decided to introduce water – I went to Target and this was literally the only straw cup in stock. I think it was $4.99. My son learned to drink from the straw after maybe 3-4 times of practice. It might have helped that you are able to squeeze the sides to send up a sip of water. So while he was mouthing it I would squeeze and he’d get a bit of water. I then made some sipping sounds and he picked it up right away. Now, a week later when I put out the cup he gets really excited and immediately picks it up and sucks down some water. It may be the cutest thing ever! I think I’ll go back and pick up a couple more of the same kind. No complaints.

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23 Wendy August 3, 2013 at 1:12 am

I actually don’t like this one. It continually becomes possessed and starts pushing liquid up and out of the straw-not so fun when leaving it alone for a few minutes, and coming back to find it (the cup), sitting in a puddle of liquid. Friends have also had the same issue with this cup :(

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24 Kate @ Smart Eating for Kids July 30, 2013 at 4:17 pm

Once Hailey got the hang of the spout cups, the Playtex First Sipsters cups were our go-to. Once she had a mouthful of teeth and was used to chewing, she chewed the daylights out of the soft-spout cups and the small holes in the sippy parts became large openings. It wasn’t long after that that she learned she could squish said openings on the tray of her chair and make big soupy puddles!

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25 Sarah July 30, 2013 at 4:24 pm

If you like the Zoli cup, you should try the Lola cup. I saw it on the Shark Tank a while back and just got one for my 9 month old. The price is steep ($20), however, it has a bunch of neat features. The bottom of the straw is weighted, so even when the cup is tilted, they can still drink from it. Also, it has handles that can be removed for an older child and have more of a water bottle look. It doesn’t leak. The straw doesn’t have a valve and is higher flow than some of his other straw sippies, but he seems to have gotten used to it. I think you could put smoothies in it, but haven’t tried. Comes with a straw cleaning brush too, very convenient!

Here is the link: http://lollaland.com/

Just thought I would pass it along!

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26 Kelley July 30, 2013 at 4:55 pm

This is a great post! We use the Nuk Learner Cup for milk and water. Love them! But you do have to replace the silicone nipples every few months.

I was using the Lollacup for water on the go, but it leaks EVERYWHERE! I’m sticking with the Nuk ones for now, but i’m in the market for a new straw one! I think I might have to try that Nubby one!

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27 Katie July 30, 2013 at 5:58 pm

Great info, Kath – I found a couple of new sippy cups to check out – I’m always looking for one that doesn’t leak, so I think I might try the Click & Lock Munchkin one…we currently love the Tommee Tippee Explora cup, but it doesn’t have a straw, just a spout.
One quick question – on your second entry, the BRU Purely Simple Training Cup at $5.99, you listed the price as one of the cons. But then on the Nubby 2 Handle Flip & Sip at $6, you mentioned that the low price was a positive. If both prices are for 1 cup, I guess I’m confused – is the Nubby $6 price tag for a 2-pack?
Some of the cups can get expensive, especially when they aren’t the right fit & we end up not using them – I’d love to try the Lolla Cup with the weighted straw, but I can’t get past the $20 price tag! :-)
Thanks for a helpful list.

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28 KERF July 30, 2013 at 8:34 pm

Good catch! I’m not really sure why I put that – I was probably looking forward to the 2-packs of Munchkins up next, but you’re definitely right that the Nubby is the same. I just changed it to “not the cheapest” instead.

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29 Emily July 30, 2013 at 6:47 pm

We like the lolla cup… Thick enough straw for smoothies, easy to clean and the straw moves with the cup just like on the Zoli.

http://www.amazon.com/gp/aw/d/B004FQ087U

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30 Michelle July 30, 2013 at 7:30 pm

Any bottle or sippy cup with a straw will leak if the water warms quickly or there is a change in altitude. The change causes pressure to build in the cup and the straw gives the water a place to go :) CamelBak has kid bottles for when he’s a bit bigger. If he likes yours, he might like them.

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31 Sarah August 1, 2013 at 9:30 am

Ditto to all of this… we used straw cups, too, and once DD was drinking cow’s milk out of one, the leaking drove us nuts. But you can’t fight physics… :) She’s over two now, and drinks her milk out of an open cup most of the time.

We’ve also got a CamelBak kids bottle for her that she’s been able to use since before she was a year old. We’ve replaced the straw and bite valve once – fortunately they sell replacements separately, since I’m sure my kid is not the only one who chewed the heck out of hers.

My only warning about the CamelBak bottles is that the pressure change on airplanes makes them leak. I’ve learned that after takeoff, it’s really important to flip up the straw and open the valve while covering the straw with something that can catch the water that sprays out – otherwise, you may give yourself and/or your neighbors a shower. I either grab a washcloth or burp cloth or something, or just hold it down by my ankle and soak the leg of my pants with water… it’s just water, it’ll dry.

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32 Leigh July 30, 2013 at 9:19 pm

I agree with one of the readers above – this sippy cup works best for us: http://www.amazon.com/Playtex-First-Gripper-Trainer-Colors/dp/B004E2H3PA/ref=sr_1_7?s=baby-products&ie=UTF8&qid=1375214837&sr=1-7.

I am a speech therapist who has to work a lot with lisps that are caused by traditional sippy cups and pacifiers. I encourage only straw drinking and regular cups. My 19 month old is now an efficient cup drinker as it’s an important skill for jaw stability.

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33 Sarah August 1, 2013 at 9:36 am

Interesting! I’d heard something about straws being better for speech development, too, but not from a particularly reliable source. Glad to hear it again!

We happened to use the same straw cups, just because that’s what I found first when someone suggested straws to us.

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34 Jennifer July 30, 2013 at 9:20 pm

We have a couple of Zoli’s. To clean the straw you can use their straw cleaner that comes with the replacement straws pack. We have the same issue with occassional leaks if the top isn’t on just right. Blurm.

Also, for smoothies and milk we use the Foogo Thermos Straw Cup which has been great. It keeps everything cold and we haven’t had any leaks!

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35 Rachel July 30, 2013 at 10:12 pm

We were huge fans of the Zoli Bot cup for months. We have several of them (have twins) and used them multiple times a day for months. Then one day they started leaking. I even bought new straws to try and fix the problem. They still leak. Now we used either the Nuby cup you mentioned or the Playtex straw cup (the version has handles is great, and the insulated version without handles is the other other favorite). Plus they are significantly cheaper than the Zoli.

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36 Rachel July 30, 2013 at 10:13 pm

We also tired the lollacup after seeing it on Shark Tank. I don’t love it as much as I’d like given the price.

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37 Mandie July 30, 2013 at 10:43 pm

I don’t know if i would call the straw ones, sippy cups. To me a sippy has a different spout.
From what I’ve read straw ones are better for breastfeeding and speech later on. We opted for one that he didn’t have to bite when he used, like many of the ones out there. I didn’t want him biting me.Is your #1 like that?

We tried the Zoli, b-box, lola, momma and innobaby

Zoli and b-box are the same thing, we liked this one but the staw is very narrow, never leaked for us.

Lola, very bulky, fast flowing so the baby chokes a lot when drinking and the weighted straw only goes from side to side,

Innobaby was great, only con is that the little flap to “hide” the straw often gets played with and distracts him from drinking.

Momma was not weighted as advertized and i didn’t like how it pinches the straw wen you turn the dial, we didn’t use it, sent it back due to no weighted straw.

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38 Lindsey July 30, 2013 at 11:53 pm

Playtex and Tommee Tippee are our favorites. My son never learned to use a regular sippy, only a straw. Which I’ve heard is better since you never have to wean off a straw ;)

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39 Lisa @bitesforbabies July 31, 2013 at 6:25 am

Every mom needs to read this! I’ve been meaning to write a post about sippy cups…for the last year! (I get too frustrated whenever I start writing one, lol). I think we must have tried EVERY sippy cup known to man…and still didn’t find a decent one! We ended up putting water in my sons’s bottle! My 8 month old is also drinking water from her bottle…and I’m dreading the day when I’ll to make the switch! I might just have to write a post about it, lol! For now I’ll check out some of the ones you mentioned! ;-)

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40 Halsy July 31, 2013 at 7:47 am

Once Mazen is drinking milk he may do better with the munchkin click lock flip straw sippy. It is made for 12 months up so that could be is just isn’t ready yet. It took my daughter some practice. However this is the one she drinks milk out of best. We like played straw cups for water. She unfortunately liked different sippys for different liquids.

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41 Laura July 31, 2013 at 9:04 am

We love the Lollacup. Pricey, but we’ve had great success with it. Once the babies don’t need handles, we use the 13 oz EcoVessel (straw) and Nalgene Grip-n-Gulp (sippy top). :))

http://mightynest.com/shop/kid-essentials/camp-essentials/straw-bottle-13oz?gclid=CLf3pNvk2bgCFcef4AodTlYATg

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42 Erin July 31, 2013 at 3:18 pm

I did straws with my first. But I despise the cleaning and am doing spouts with the second. Straws are
much harder to clean and yes I do have a brush and yes I do occasionally run them thru the dishwasher and yes sometimes I still see pink mold forming. Anyhow I liked playtex straw cups for the oldest and started the baby on nuk learner and he now uses tommee tippee silicon soft spout. The flow from the learner cup became too slow.

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43 Mom July 31, 2013 at 7:15 pm

Those sippy cups are so beautiful compared to the Tuperware ones we had years ago. You started a thing that the red one was the best. When I’d bring out the cups, you’d shout, “I get the red one.” Of course, then your sister was dying for the red one and trouble followed.

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44 KERF July 31, 2013 at 7:21 pm

I remember that!

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45 Megan July 31, 2013 at 7:53 pm

We use the skip hop straw cups for my almost 8 month old. It took him about a week to get used to it but now he does great. He still sips too much every once in a while but It hasn’t leaked for us yet. :) it’s only $6 so compared to a few other straw cups its not too expensive.
https://www.skiphop.com/product/zoostrawbottle.html

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46 Heather August 1, 2013 at 2:49 pm

This is a great review, Kath! Who knew cups could be so overwhelming. :)

I was curious if anyone has tried the Sassy Grow Up Cup? It’s more like a regular cup in that it doesn’t have a straw or nozzle. http://www.buybuybaby.com/store/product/sassy-grow-up-cup-7-ounces/1041276099

I’ve read so many different things about the pros and cons of a straw v. spouts, that I decided maybe we could skip those (except for travel) and go right to a regular cup like this. I haven’t tried it yet (my son is 8 months, corrected age of 6 months), so I don’t have an opinion but would love to hear from others.

Re: Zoli – My mom bought one for my nephew and it leaked so much that she tossed it. I don’t know if it’s defective or human error, but I’ve heard many people having the same leaking issue so it makes me weary to spend the money on one.

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47 Brittnie (A Joy Renewed) August 1, 2013 at 4:15 pm

I wish we had a fav sippy cup. Sigh. Clara is 15 months (well on Friday) and still not getting the sippy cup thing. We have tried many but I’m keeping this post in mind for future reference. For now her therapist says stick with the bottle (she cannot hold her bottle yet. . . work in progress).

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48 susan forde August 3, 2013 at 3:44 pm

Hey, I just wanted to comment on the age at which you started giving water. I am an island girl (Barbaods) and we give water from the minute we bring baby home. General rule 1 oz per month….so a one month old gets 1oz water

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49 Shannon Bell August 5, 2013 at 12:15 am

Hey Kath! This is so random, but I’m newly pregnant (9 wks!) w our first baby and am struggling with terrible nausea all of the time. I peeked through your earlier posts to remind myself what combo you took that helped so much, ie: unisom + B6…I’m a busy med student and we don’t ever suggest unisom, but I’m so willing to do anything and I know its safe, but I’m worried I’ll be sleepy b.c of it! Did you experience any drowsiness from taking it or was is simply effective against the nausea?
Thanks!!

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50 KERF August 5, 2013 at 6:59 am

So sorry you’re sick :-( I was never drowsy surprisingly and it helped tremendously

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51 Shannon Bell August 5, 2013 at 9:31 am

Thanks!

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52 Sarah August 6, 2013 at 12:36 am

Because Aiden still hasn’t really grasped the idea of holding onto his own cup, I’m using mason jars with a lid attachment for a straw opening. I don’t really like the idea of his water sitting in plastic, especially in the hot car (diaper bag). I used a few of those cups with my daughter and she definitely preferred the soft straw, mostly so she could chew on it!
If I felt comfortable using plastic I’d definitely try the handled cups as he got older.

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53 Reghan August 8, 2013 at 3:10 pm
54 Racheal @ Running with Racheal September 11, 2013 at 6:17 am

I am a little late to the party – but I just used your reviews to order a few cups. I appreciate you taking the time to write this up.

Thanks!

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55 Angel Lescarbeau October 1, 2013 at 9:59 pm

I have the innobaby and love it. My daughter just turned a year old and has only been breastfed. I started giving her the innobaby weighted straw cup with a little water in it whenever she was in the highchair. I was having trouble with liquid leaking out the top of the straw due to temp change I assume. then I saw a youtube review that showed there is a thing on the top of the cup to raise or lower if that happens. I may try the Zoli as well.

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56 Kelly J November 22, 2013 at 8:09 pm

Hi Kath and ladies. THanks for the awesome topic. My daughter has feeding issues secondary to low tone from Down syndrome. We are trying to get her drinking better from a cup to get her off her feeding tube. She is currently using the lolla cup which is great but I think it is too fast for her as she spits a lot of it out. Does anyone have any recommendations for a SLOW FLOW STRAW CUP? I am not yelling, just wanted to make that clear:) Thanks, Kelly

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57 Sarah April 8, 2014 at 6:50 pm

Do you use any of these for smoothies?

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58 KERF April 8, 2014 at 7:07 pm

Yes the OXO Tot is my favorite for smoothies because it’s easiest to clean

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59 sarah April 10, 2014 at 9:12 pm

Thank you! And which for milk? We love zoli for water but worries about the mold issue with milk

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60 KERF April 11, 2014 at 8:41 am

The OXO Tot too…because of the wider straw

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