Last updated: August 18, 2021

Today we are going to talk about the thermos cup, a container that keeps your drink hot or cold for a few hours, so you can enjoy it for longer. The thermos cup is also an excellent option for those looking for an alternative to reduce waste production, because the container is made of washable, reusable materials, which do not pick up smell, taste or colour. Another advantage is that you can take the Thermos Cup to work and school, as it has a lid. Are you interested? Then keep reading this article, because we will address all the advantages of the product, which features change from one model to another, how to choose the ideal one and give some purchase suggestions.




First of all, the most important things

  • Usually the thermal cup is made of stainless steel (but there are plastic, acrylic, ceramic and aluminum models), comes with a sealing lid, which maintains the temperature (hot or cold) for a period of three to twelve hours and has a capacity of 200 to 500 ml.
  • The thermal cup can be finished plain, coloured, printed, with fun or motivational messages. You will also find models with straw, filter, handles for easy transportation, suction cup to fix on the table, digital panel and much more.
  • Besides the traditional thermo cup for coffee, you can also find a version for beer. But, in general, any model of thermos cup will do to maintain the temperature of the drink, whether hot or cold.

Best Thermal Cup: Our Picks

Buying Guide

There is nothing better than taking a break in the afternoon to enjoy a hot coffee, with fresh aroma and flavour. With a thermo cup you can have that moment of pleasure even when you are away from home, at college, at work or on a trip.

Imagem de uma mulher tomando café em um copo térmico durante um acampamento.

With the thermos cup you can enjoy a hot and fresh coffee at any time and place. (Source: Olena Yakobchuk / 123RF)

What is a thermos flask?

The thermos cup uses the same technology as the thermos bottle (created in 1892 by Scottish physicist James Dewar), which consists of isolating the liquid in a container in order to avoid the exchange of heat between the drink and the environment and maintain a constant temperature for a longer period of time. Of course there have been some advances such as temperature maintenance guarantee, special sealing and interesting features like straw, filter, handles and different designs, but the essence remains the same.

If the beverage is hot, the thermos cup can maintain the temperature for three to six hours. If the beverage is cold, this time increases to 8 to 12 hours

What are the advantages of having a thermos glass?

Of course, the greatest advantage is having the drink at the desired temperature for longer. But it doesn't end there. There is an infinity of models and the thermal cup can be made of plastic, acrylic, aluminum, ceramic and stainless steel, being this last material the most efficient one. The capacity ranges from 200 to 500 ml and the glasses can have different shapes. The thermo cup is ideal for beverages of different temperatures: hot, like tea, milk and coffee; fresh, like water and juice; and cold, like soft drink and even beer.

The drinking glass can be used for hot and cold beverages.

For the drinking glass to keep its function preserved and last longer, it is necessary to take some care in its handling, such as avoiding falls, washing with the soft side of the sponge to avoid scratching the container, and not putting the drinking glass in the refrigerator (especially in the freezer), or in the microwave. To learn more about the advantages and disadvantages, check it out:

Advantages
  • Keeps the drink hot for three to six hours
  • Keeps the drink cold for eight to twelve hours
  • There are models made of plastic, acrylic, ceramic, aluminum or stainless steel
  • You can find versions from 200 to 500 ml
  • The lid seals the bottle preventing the drink from leaking
Disadvantages
  • If the glass is not properly closed, the drink temperature changes

Bottle, mug or thermos: Which one is the right model for my needs?

When it comes to buying a thermos flask, you will come across a similar item in terms of functionality, minimum and maximum capacity, shape and material: the thermos mug. The difference between the two is that the mug has a handle on the side.

Imagem de uma moça tomando café em um copo descartável.

The thermal cup is an excellent alternative for those who want to reduce the waste they produce. (Source: Bruce Mars / Pexels)

The thermos is also very similar, except for the larger maximum capacity, presence of an ampoule that isolates the drink from the external coating of the bottle and pressure cap. We compare the models in the table below, check it out.

Thermal glass Thermal bottle
Capacity 200 to 500 ml 500 ml to 3L
Material Plastic, acrylic, aluminum, ceramic or stainless steel Plastic, ceramic, aluminum or stainless steel
Sealing By screw cap, hermetic, vacuum or fast click Screw cap, pressure cap or flip

Purchase criteria: Factors to compare models of thermos flasks

With so many options available on the market, you may find it somewhat difficult to choose the ideal model of thermos cup. However, apart from the design, which depends exclusively on personal taste, some aspects are essential for this accessory:

  • Material
  • Size
  • Lid
  • Closure systems
  • Design
  • Extra Features

We will explain each of the items in detail throughout this section.

Material

The material used in the manufacture of the thermo cup makes a lot of difference in the efficiency (or inefficiency) of the product. The plastic and acrylic models are thermoresistant, but they cannot keep the temperature for a long time and transfer it to the external side of the container. Aluminum, in turn, keeps the temperature of the drink for much longer, however, the heat transfer is very high and you can even burn your hands if the drink inside the cup is too hot. If you are buying an aluminium thermo cup, choose a model with a double layer of material or a version with rubber finishing, which isolates the heat a little. You can also find some models made of ceramic, which, despite keeping the heat in for longer, leaves the container with a very high temperature (the secret is to choose a model with a double wall). But the ideal material for a thermos glass is stainless steel, which keeps the heat of the drink without you noticing when you touch the bottle, does not pick up any smell, colour or flavour, does not rust, is very resistant to falls (although the plastic lid is not) and has excellent durability.

Size

When choosing a thermos cup prioritize the size of the container. If you drink a lot of coffee (or any other beverage of your choice) throughout the day, look for a model with a 500 ml capacity. However, if you only drink at certain times of the day and a smaller quantity satisfies you, a model with a capacity of 350 ml will do the job. In this case, you can also opt for a thermos mug.

Mulher agasalhada em montanha com neve bebendo café em copo térmico.

If you drink a lot of coffee and at various times of the day, it is worth buying a larger thermos cup, with a capacity of 500 ml. (Source: Alena Ozerova / 123RF)

Lid

When choosing a thermos cup, take into account that the lid has a function as important as the material of the bottle, because this piece is responsible for sealing the bottle (maintains the ideal temperature for longer). For this reason, it must have a good closure system (screw or fitting) to prevent the drink from leaking into your bag or backpack. Some models come with a safety lock, so it is worth buying one with this feature.

Closure systems

Thermal glasses can have four closure systems (they can be complementary): hermetic, vacuum, fast click and screwing. The hermetic and vacuum models are very similar: the glass is entirely sealed, preventing the entry of air. This closure style helps preserve the properties, flavour and aroma of the beverage. In addition, hot liquids do not condense in the glass. The screw-top sealed thermos cup needs to have rubber sealing inside the bottle, because this closure style is the one that presents the highest risk of leakage. The models with fast-click closure are the simplest to open and close, as it is only necessary to press a button. Generally, the fast click closure has a locking system for the lid, which is also easy to handle.

Design

Nowadays, companies are investing a lot in the design of thermos flasks. There are models with floral, geometric, ethnic, poá prints, fun messages, motivational, flags of football teams, countries and characters.

Imagem de um copo térmico rosa.

A characteristic of the thermal glasses is the colorful and fun design. (Source: Pixabay / Pexels)

For children, thermal cups have prints of superheroes, princesses and popular designs in the children's universe. You can also find personalised models with your child's name.

Extra features

Your thermos cup can come with some extra features, they are:

  • Straw
  • Dual opening: larger for cold liquids and smaller for hot liquids
  • Filter
  • Bottle opener attached to the cup lid
  • Suction cup or magnet at the bottom of the glass (outer part), to prevent falling
  • Smart cup, which shows the temperature of the drink on a LED display on the lid
  • With infuser to prepare tea inside the cup
  • With press to prepare coffee inside the cup.

(Featured image source: David Bares / Pexels)

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