This is a post for all the running-out-the-door, tugging-on-sneaks, “Do you have your backpack?”-“Where are the keys?”-“Put on a jacket!” moms. Now that I’m doing the same thing every morning (admittedly sans children), having a cup of heaven to cuddle on the bus ride into the city is a treasure. What is not a treasure, is hitting one of the thousand potholes and getting heaven all down the front of my sweater.

Not the cool, collected look I’m going for walking into the office. SO, we rounded up some travel coffee mugs and put them to the test.

Insulated Travel Coffee Mugs: Our 6 Favorites, Reviewed

We wanted to find travel mugs good enough to use (and last) for years. I don’t know if you guys are like me, but once I find something that works, I cling to it forever (or until it gets discontinued and replaced by its less-than-good “upgraded version”). Shana ordered about 100 mugs (JK, more like 20), and as they trickled in, we judged each by look, feel, durability, spill-proofing, and…y’know…how well they actually worked. We eliminated quite a few and found our favorites of the bunch. The goal was to find one to use every day to help limit our environmental impact.

This article S found explains how many times you have to use your chosen travel mugs to make up for a paper to-go cup. It’s not super straightforward, because travel mugs take so many more resources to make than a paper cup, so to make these truly better for the environment, you have to use them 20 to over 100 times. Otherwise, you’re better off with a paper cup. So choose carefully.

Insulated travel coffee mugs — we judged by look, feel, durability, spill-proofing &...y'know...how well they actually work...to find 1 mug to limit our environmental impact.

Travel Mug Co-Champions!

1. Ello Campy Stainless Steel Mug

For When You Want A Handle – We’ll start with our favorite (specifically Shana’s favorite). It’s a nice weight, comes in multiple sizes (S likes the smaller one), and has a comfortable handle. These babies are BPA-free, and keep hot drinks hot and cold drinks cold for hours. S has tossed this into her bag with a little coffee left and avoided spills, but she’d be a bit hesitant to place a full cup in her bag. You should hand-wash the body, but can toss the lid into the dishwasher.

Insulated travel coffee mugs — we judged by look, feel, durability, spill-proofing &...y'know...how well they actually work...to find 1 mug to limit our environmental impact.

Travel Mug Co-Champion #2

2. Contigo Travel Mug

Perfect For Tossing In A Bag – Our second place spot is claimed by the Contigo travel mug. Linzi swears by this one (and we see it around the office all the time). This is definitely meant for travel; the kinda mug you can seal, toss in your bag, and run out the door with. They’ve also updated the lid design to make it much easier to clean thoroughly. The lid can be tossed in the dishwasher, but the body is hand-wash only. Shana (somehow) had trouble holding this mug…I won’t comment because she’s proofreading this post. I will say: Linzi was confused.

Insulated travel coffee mugs — we judged by look, feel, durability, spill-proofing &...y'know...how well they actually work...to find 1 mug to limit our environmental impact.

A Few Other Insulated Mugs We Considered

3. YETI Rambler Mug (with MagSlider Lid)

The Yeti Rambler mug is the last of our top 3 for a few reasons. No matter how sturdy and hard-working it is, this thing is heavy as all get out. It’ll keep your bev hot for a good long while, BUT….the lid. Just an open hole to drink from with no sliding mechanism to keep it from going everywhere. In order to make this travel friendly, you’ll have to order an entirely separate lid (the MagSlider Lid). Still, a good option for a campsite stay. And it’s dishwasher safe, be still my beating heart.

Insulated travel coffee mugs — we judged by look, feel, durability, spill-proofing &...y'know...how well they actually work...to find 1 mug to limit our environmental impact.

4. Corkcicle Triple Insulated Tumbler

Okay, so the Corkcicle didn’t make our top three, BUT it’s still a very cute travel mug with great reviews. The flat sides give you a better grip, and it comes in a few colors that are easy on the eyes (like Unicorn Magic). This also has a spill-resistant lid, and from what I’ve read in the reviews, the only issues people have had with it leaking are when they fill it too full.

Insulated travel coffee mugs — we judged by look, feel, durability, spill-proofing &...y'know...how well they actually work...to find 1 mug to limit our environmental impact.

5. S’well Commuter Mug

The shape of this bottle is super-cute and lends to preventing spills from being knocked over (not to mention the whole stained wood aesthetic). Like all the others on this list, it keeps the hot stuff hot and the cold stuff cold for a good long time. An important note I saw in the reviews though was that this bottle may not fit in all vehicle cup-holders. Kind of an important thing if you’re planning on using this on your commute.

Insulated travel coffee mugs — we judged by look, feel, durability, spill-proofing &...y'know...how well they actually work...to find 1 mug to limit our environmental impact.

6. Camelbak Hot Cap Travel Mug

This travel mug is made of insulated stainless steel and has a 360 degree cap that lets you drink from any side. The cap twists open to help prevent leaks and is also dishwasher safe (win), but the body should be hand-washed for longevity (not so much a win, but I get it). It definitely does its job and keeps things hot or cold for hours, plus it’s a pretty sturdy bottle. It’ll survive a few drops and falls for sure, maybe a good one to use for hikes and mountain trips.

Insulated travel coffee mugs — we judged by look, feel, durability, spill-proofing &...y'know...how well they actually work...to find 1 mug to limit our environmental impact.

Do you guys have a favorite travel mug you swear by? I feel like I’ll always be on the hunt for The One; nothing too heavy, nothing too breakable, stays warm for a million years (because yes, that is how long it takes me to drink a cup of coffee). If you have any suggestions feel free to leave a comment!

Your Resident Dungeon Master,

Syd

And for the pinners…

Insulated travel coffee mugs — we judged by look, feel, durability, spill-proofing &...y'know...how well they actually work...to find 1 mug to limit our environmental impact.
Insulated travel coffee mugs — we judged by look, feel, durability, spill-proofing &...y'know...how well they actually work...to find 1 mug to limit our environmental impact.
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Sydney is the resident video editor and social media wrangler here at The Mom Edit (also reppin’ 1996 babies). She started as an intern in her third year of college, went away for a little to finish her video game degree, then came back for more. She may not be a mom but she is the Mom Friend with a Dad’s Sense of Humor. When not at work she’s either playing a game, working on a game, or trying a new bread recipe.

15 COMMENTS

  1. Was Zojirushi one of the brands you tried? It’s the only travel mug I trust with hot tea in my purse. My husband uses Bubba and Contigo travel mugs for his car commute where leakage isn’t as much of a concern.

  2. Yes to the Contigo. Have made it through hours of flag football games and more with not drinks staying hot. I was wondering about the Yeti but will pass on it since I have the Contigo. Great article

  3. Zojirushi Stainless Mug! Locking, spillproof lid that keeps coffee hot for hours. I’m talking 24 hours later coffee is still warmer than room temperature.

    “Commuter” in most descriptions means your beverage stays warm for your commute, say 1 hour, not half the day.

  4. Pro tip: You can put the Contigo in the dishwasher if you get the plain stainless steel instead of one of the colors – it’s the paint that isn’t dishwasher safe, not the mug itself. I wish I could find a spill-resistant travel mug that didn’t have hot liquid coming into contact with any plastic at all, but until I do, <3 my Contigo. Doesn't spill, ever, stays hot.

  5. A vote For Tervis! No, I would NOT throw it in my purse (not spill proof) and it doesn’t keep your coffee cold for hours BUT you can use it in the microwave! as a coffee reheater, that is the most important thing to me.

  6. I really like my hydroflask. I had a lot of trouble with the Camelbak leaking all over my bag, but the Hydroflask keeps things contained (unless I forget to snap it shut before putting it in my bag, which may have happened…)

  7. You must try Zojirushi stainless steel mug. I’m talking coffee outdoors during MN polar vortex for hours, and it was still piping hot! Keeps cold drinks cold for hours too. I’m talking all day, hot or cold, not just a couple hours. I can’t go back to any other mugs after this. The 16oz is the perfect size that fits into all my medium purses. A must try.

  8. Stanley thermoses keep stuff hot FOREVER. They are pretty heavy, however. Great for camping or sports games or anywhere that you don’t have to hoof it with you for a long time but then have a “home base.”

  9. For anyone looking for the link to the original life-cycle assessment of paper cups, here it is (accessible if you read French): http://www.ciraig.org/pdf/CIRAIG_RapportACVtassesetgobelets_public.pdf.

    The problem with the Anthropocene article is bumf like this: “Washing the reusable mugs with hot water and soap puts them at a disadvantage when it comes to ecosystem-quality indicators. These indicators cover issues such as ecotoxicological emissions, acidification, eutrophication, and land occupation.” which is pretty much pointless to most normal humans without another page of explanation. Shame on them.

  10. Yeti for the length of time it keeps coffee hot. I like the tumbler because it fits nicely in the cup holder in my car, and use the slider lid.
    Contigo for avoiding spills. I used to throw a full Contigo into my purse all the time and that baby never spilled a drop.

  11. I have Contigo mugs from Costco like 10 years ago and still use them every day. As someone else mentioned, the plain ones are dishwasher safe, color ones chip off in the dishwasher but then you end up with a nice silver one eventually!

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