My first hot, sticky summer in the South (as a transplant from California) was filled with headaches and sickness. The acclimation process was pretty brutal. Eleven years later, though, I'm much more used to the heat and humidity of northern Florida than the arid climate of the West—and I've also learned some tricks to beating the heat. One of them is having my very favorite water bottle always within arm's reach.
Get it: Contigo Autoseal 24-Ounce Stainless Steel Water Bottle, $16.99 - $22.99 (depending on color)
This water bottle certainly isn't the cheapest one you can find, but after much trial and error with several less sturdy and less convenient daily water bottles, I genuinely think it's the best. Here's why:
It keeps water cold all day
Like, by the end of the day, sometimes I'll still have ice chips in my water. We all know how refreshing it is to take a swig of cold, cold water after a sweaty hike or unloading a cart of Costco groceries after trekking through the blazing parking lot.
It doesn't leak
It's simply not practical, in my life at least, to always have to keep your water bottle upright or even to hold it. Although often I do just carry it, sometimes I need to throw it in the pool bag or my oversized purse and know that it won't leak all over my fluffy towels or laptop. My kids throw their Contigos in their back packs every day during the school year, and we've yet to have a soggy homework mishap.
I can drink one-handed, quickly
I don't know about you, but having to unscrew a cap with one hand and bring a water bottle to my mouth with the other isn't always ideal. Plus, am I the only one who spills water all down my front when gulping from wide-mouthed water bottles? With my Contigo, I can drink with one hand, while I have a baby on my hip, and the spout is small enough to save me from the embarrassment of too-enthusiastic water-drinking.
It fits in the cup holder of the car
It's virtually unbreakable
Plastic water bottles are definitely lighter and glass water bottles are elegant, but neither of those will survive the tumbles to the concrete that my Contigo has endured. Their gently dented bottoms tell the story of all the falls they've sustained.
It's easy to clean
No straw and no intricate parts means cleanup is easy and there aren't any nooks and crannies for mold to lurk in.
One thing to keep in mind: If you like the Contigo Autoseal water bottles that are colored like this one (as opposed to natural silver-toned stainless steel), be aware that eventually the colored coating may chip a bit — mine has. The colors are beautiful, though, and not everyone is as hard on their water bottles as I seem to be.