IF, like many parents, you’re on the endless quest for the best water bottle for kids – you know the one: it looks good, doesn’t leak, can handle a playground whack or three – the search is over.
Our top pick of reusable bottles have been road-tested by toddlers and school kids to ensure each one is long-lasting, robust and perfect for keeping children of all ages healthy and hydrated.
This article and featured products have been independently chosen by Sun journalists. It contains links which are ads, and if you click a link and buy a product we will earn revenue.
1. Ion8 Leak-proof Kids Water Bottle
- (AD) Ion8 Leak-proof Kids Water Bottle, £8.99 from Amazon – buy here
As water bottles go, this well-engineered, good-value design is a great all-rounder – it has a one-touch flip top that springs open satisfyingly quick (our mini tester enjoyed this part alone) and a decent drinking spout with no straw; simply tip it back and it’s easy to get maximum hydration with minimum effort.
Made from BPA-free plastic, its mini 400ml capacity makes it just the ticket for squeezing into packed nursery bags and it comes in a range of bright colours that feel surprisingly soft to the touch.
An additional safety lock prevents accidental opening while carried in a bag, but this part was slightly trickier for our pint-sized tester to master. It’s dishwasher-safe, a brilliant extra, plus it’s lightweight yet hardy enough to take more than a few knocks.
2. Contigo Gizmo Flip Autospout
- (AD) Contigo Gizmo Flip Autospout, £16.50 from Amazon – buy here
The Contigo Flip Autospout takes a standard kids water bottle and elevates it to super status – our three-year-old tester had great fun pressing the button to make the pop-up straw appear, while us grown-ups were wowed by the staw’s spill-proof valve, which, even when upside-down, was 100% leak-proof.
Made from BPA-free plastic, it holds a decent 420ml and all parts are dishwasher safe, although it’s worth investing in a small cleaning brush to get into the harder-to-clean parts of the spout.
It comes in an array of sweet designs that children will love and its durability and hardiness have proved to be a major hit with parents, with one reviewer describing it as ‘bomb-proof’ -– never a bad thing when toddlers are involved.
3. One Green Bottle Stainless Steel Curvy Bottle
- One Green Bottle Stainless Steel Curvy Bottle, £15 from One Green Bottle – buy here
If it’s eco-credentials you and your kids are after, this curvy dream of a bottle is a no-brainer. Made from stainless steel and delivered with zero plastic packaging, for every bottle sold, One Green Bottle reclaims 25 plastic bottles from the ocean.
We tested the compact 500ml bottle, but there’s also an even smaller 350ml version, perfect for toddlers, or sizes right up to 1200ml. The classic sports cap was a cinch for our 3-year-old to pull up and drink from and its striking green colour won’t get lost in a crowded classroom.
Filled with water, it’s light enough for kids to carry, but it’s worth buying the brand’s silicone sloop carrier (£5) to really make it useful for on-the-go, although this does push the price up to the higher end of the market. The bottle needs to be hand-washed, but each part is super quick to rinse out. Best of all, it didn’t leak at all – a big win.
4. Smiggle Kick Drink Bottle
- Smiggle Kick Drink Bottle, £9 from Smiggle – buy here
When it comes to kitting out kids for school, Smiggle is a major player. Hugely popular with children of all ages, even the royals are fans with Prince George and Princess Charlotte recently spotted in the brand’s Kings Road branch.
One of the best-value designs on our list, this Kick Drink Bottle is not short of features – boasting a 650ml capacity, it’s the ideal thirst-quencher for sports-loving older kids and its flip-top spout offers efficient drinking.
The football print coordinates with other products in Smiggle’s Kick collection, a nice bonus, plus it’s dishwasher safe. All of that and you’ll even get change from a tenner.
5. Nalgene Kid’s Everyday Minigrip
- Nalgene Kid’s Everyday Minigrip, £7.06 from Alpine Trek – buy here
The beauty in the Kid’s Everyday Minigrip is in its simplicity; it has a mega wide screw-top lid that practically beckons for big thirsty gulps, plus its look is the epitome of fuss-free.
Made by outdoorsy US brand Nalgene, which has a range of cult-favourite bottles known for their practicality and longevity, the Minigrip definitely felt like one of the toughest designs we tested.
It’s best suited to school-age kids – our five-year-old tester unscrewed the lid in a jiffy, but our three-year-old struggled and the wide rim isn’t ideal for smaller children who are more prone to spillages. That said, it’s the cheapest bottle in our line-up, its dishwasher safe and its tough-as-boots exterior will be a match for even the most slap-dash little ones (so, all of them then).
6. Thermos Funtainer Bottle
- Thermos Funtainer Bottle, £16.99 from Thermos – buy here
Legendary brand Thermos knows a thing or two about creating usable, popular drinks containers and this clever 355ml Funtainer Bottle is no exception.
It strikes a fantastic balance between functionality and kid-friendliness; with a push-button lid and pop-up straw, it’s suitable for even the youngest of toddlers, while it’s made from insulated stainless steel, so it’ll keep drinks cool for up to 12 hours.
The flip-up carry lid makes it quick to grab while on the go and we found it didn’t leak once, although it’s not suitable for the dishwasher, so it’s slightly more difficult to keep clean. It comes with a five-year guarantee, which is a reassuring extra.
7. Best in Show Stainless Steel Bottle
- Best in Show Stainless Steel Bottle, £14.99 from World Animal Protection – buy here
Made from stainless steel and covered in dogs, it was love at first sight when we clapped eyes on this charming 500ml bottle and a little squeal even escaped our 5-year-old tester when he saw it.
Cute design aside, it’s a reliable, robust bottle that keeps liquids cold for 24 hours and hot for 12 and its twist-open lid is simple to work, with a narrow opening for minimal spillage. When filled to the top it’s fairly heavy, but after a six-hour school day, we found the water inside was still chilly.
At £15 it’s not the cheapest in our edit, but it’s still a competitive price for a steel bottle, plus it’s made by the World Animal Protection, so every bottle sold supports the organisation’s good work.
8. Camelbak Eddy+ Kids
- Camelbak Eddy+ Kids, £16 from Camelbak – buy here
For toddlers transitioning from a sippy cup, the Camelbak Eddy+ is an excellent choice of water bottle.
Leak-proof when closed and spill-proof when opened, there’s no danger of soggy explosions in nursery bags with this bottle, even when it’s thrown around (and, let’s face it, it will be).
The straw folds out when the top flips up and it’s effortless to drink from. We found it simple to clean as it’s dishwasher friendly and it comes in a range of sunny colours and prints that are guaranteed to turn heads in the playground.
9. Cath Kidston Pembridge Ditsy
- Cath Kidston Pembridge Ditsy Kids Drinking Bottle, £8.50 from Cath Kidston – buy here
This BPA-free bottle has a fun, floral design and has a handy carry handle.
If your kids like matching their school things, there's also a matching backpack and lunch bag available too.
10.Drink Up Roarsome Dinosaurs
- Drink Up Roarsome Dinosaurs Water Bottle, £6.50 from Sass & Belle – buy here
If your kid loves dinosaurs, this bottle is perfect.
There's also a handy straw that compacts into the lid -great for avoiding any spillages (ideal for kids who may be a tad clumsy).
11. Noodoll bottle
- Noodoll Water Bottle, £13 from Kidly – buy here
If you're after an easy-to-clean option, this stainless steel bottle for kids is nice and lightweight and also has an impressive leak-proof lid.
It also contains an integrated straw for easy drinking and comes in four different colours.
12. Klean Kanteen Kid Kanteen
- Klean Kanteen Kid Kanteen, £16.95 from Amazon – buy here
We love this bottle option for keeping hot drinks hot and cold drinks cold for a good few hours.
The bottle comes in all different colours, is easy-to-clean and the mouth-piece even has a dust-cover to protect it whilst out and about.
What is the safest material for kids’ water bottles?
The best water bottles for kids, and the environment, are reusable designs that can be filled again and again. One of the most popular and safest materials for modern children’s bottles is stainless steel – handy for keeping liquids both cold and warm, it looks great and is seriously strong and durable, but it’s slightly heavier than other materials like plastic and can be more expensive.
Another option featured in our list is BPA-free plastic, which means there’s no risk of chemical nasties getting into drinks, it’s generally easier on your bank balance and it’s a lightweight alternative to steel.
What to look for in a kids’ water bottle
A good reusable water bottle is a child’s everyday essential, but it can be difficult to find one that ticks every box: it has to be water-tight (no one needs drenched homework), easy for little ones to use independently, simple to clean, big enough to hold a decent amount of water (but not too big for small hands to carry) and able to withstand a few bumps and scrapes along the way. And if it looks cool too, that’s even better.
How do I clean my kids' water bottle?
While most plastic bottles and the majority of steel designs can be thrown into the dishwasher, some need to be hand-washed with warm soapy water to best preserve their design.
It’s easy for grime to build up in a water bottle and many are made up of different components that can be individually taken apart and scrubbed. The best water bottles for kids are those that make the cleaning process quick and easy.
Enjoyed our roundup of the best kids' water bottles? Then you'll love our article on the best lunch boxes for kids.
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