sustainable bottles

Welcome to the Ailuna refillable bottle dare

Thank you for taking on the refillable bottle dare! We are here to give you the lowdown, plus some tips and hints to make sure your brand new habit sticks for good. Let’s do it!

Table of Contents

Why are refillable bottles so good?

Before we get started with some ideas and tips, here are a few reasons why swapping to a refillable bottle is a great move:

  • You can refill them! This sounds obvious, but using a refillable bottle rather than buying endless plastic bottles saves so much plastic. Less plastic bought means less plastic in landfill and our beautiful oceans. In fact, one million plastic bottles are purchased around the world every single minute. So by taking on this dare you will help to reduce this number immediately.
  • Whilst a lot of disposable bottles are reported to contain toxins, it’s easy to find refillable bottles that are toxin-free. 
  • In the long-term, it works out a lot cheaper. Even though a refillable bottle has a bigger initial cost than disposables, if you are drinking tap water, the cost per bottle is much lower than buying bottled water each day.
  • You can fill it with whatever you like! Got some leftover smoothie from breakfast? Put it in your bottle. Fancy squash or juice instead of water today? No problem – fill up your bottle and off you go. You get the idea – your bottle is versatile and you are in control of what goes into it (and into your body!)
  • The average human *should* be drinking 4 plastic bottles of water per day (hands up who doesn’t usually remember to drink this much!). That’s 1,460 in a year. But let’s be realistic – most of us are more likely to purchase just one, and perhaps not even every day. But even if you buy two a week on average, that’s still 104 bottles in a year you could save!

 

Selecting your refillable bottle

Now for the fun part – choosing the best bottle for you! There are so many bottles on the market, so choosing one that fits your needs shouldn’t be too difficult once you work out what’s important to you. If you’re ready to shop, come and have a look at some of the bottles members of the Ailuna team have handpicked as their favourites. Take a look at the Ailuna shop to browse them now.

If you’re still deciding, here are a few of the options to consider:

Material

Reusable bottles come in a huge range of materials, and which one works for you depends on a few things: 

Glass

Some of the most beautifully-designed water bottles are made of glass. A lot are part-covered in silicone to provide a bit of extra grip and they come in many different shapes and designs.

But, glass can be heavy and bulky, not to mention breakable, so if you want something a little more lightweight and durable, it might not be for you.

Plastic

Despite being made from plastic, refillable plastic bottles are different in that they are not single-use like their disposable counterparts. If you choose one made from impact-resistant plastic you won’t have to worry about the time it slips out of your hand or falls out of your bag.

So, if you like the durability, lightness and variety of designs, a plastic bottle might be for you. Don’t forget that a lot of refillable plastic bottles are actually made from recycled (and recyclable) plastic, so by buying one you could be helping save plastic from landfill or the oceans. Plastic isn’t always the bad guy!

Metal (steel/aluminium)

Metal bottles are super-tough and often come in a lovely-feeling brushed metal style. This avoids inevitable scratches being too visible and gives them a really stylish look.

Collapsible silicone

If you’re looking for a bottle that you can easily squash down and keep in your bag then a collapsible bottle or rollable bottle might be for you. The majority of collapsible bottles are made of silicone, and come in a variety of sizes and colours.

Rollable

You can even get a bottle that isn’t actually a bottle! Rollable or foldable bottles are great if you need a super lightweight option that, when empty, will fit in your jeans pocket!

Yes, they’re slightly more awkward to drink from than a standard bottle but we found it easy to get used to.

 

Bamboo and other materials

Bamboo is another popular material for water bottles (although a lot of them are just “finished” with bamboo on the outside, with another material for inside), and some take the eco-credentials one step further by being made from repurposed waste bamboo. 

You can also get ceramic bottles but they’re not as readily available as the other materials listed here.

Other things to consider

There are bottles with all sorts of different features on offer. Here are some of the most important things to consider:

Size

Refillable bottles come in a huge range of sizes, so it should be fairly easy to find one that fits your lifestyle. If you’re using it purely to fill up with water at the office water cooler instead of using disposable cups, then a small bottle should do just fine. But if you are going on day-long hikes or are travelling ton warmer climates, we’d suggest a minimum of 1 litre so you have plenty to last until your next refill.

Another consideration is whether your bottle will fit comfortably in your car’s cup holder – especially if you regularly take it on longer trips. On a similar note, if you’re struggling to find a bottle to fit your existing bike bottle cage, some bottle manufacturers also sell specialist bottle cages to make sure your new bottle is secure for your ride. 

Insulated?

Again, if you’re planning on travelling somewhere warm, an insulated bottle might be a good plan.

Or, you might want to go insulated so your bottle can double up as a reusable hot drinks carrier and you want to keep your tea or coffee hot as well as keeping your water cold.

Many insulated bottles can keep drinks either hot or cold for over 12 hours so they are ideal for long day trips, picnics, and even camping.

Leakproof

Be careful to check that the bottle you choose is fully leakproof if you want to be able to carry it in your bag or if it might roll around in the boot of your car. Be careful for bottles that have “sports” style caps or are advertised as “spill-proof” or “spill-resistant” – this does not mean they are completely watertight. 

It’s also a very good idea to test your bottle for leaks before throwing it into your bag with your phone or laptop. Believe us, we’ve been there.

Filters and fruit

Let’s talk filters first. There are two types of water filter bottles. The first is the simple carbon filter, which filters your standard tap water into great-tasting filtered water. If you use a filter at home and think it makes a difference, then a carbon filter bottle could be a good choice.

The second filter option is a little more impressive, but less likely to be necessary if you live somewhere with drinkable tap water. These bottles include an integrated contaminants filter which remove 99.9% (in some cases), and are reported to be effective in making dirty water drinkable. If you’re an avid traveller and often find yourself in areas without drinkable water, this could be a huge saver for you.

Finally, the fruit infusing bottles! These include a little “cage” inside the bottle. You fill the cage with fruit of your choice and it infuses your water. Our favourites are lemon, lime or cucumber!

Need to buy a bottle?

If you’re ready to take on this dare but still need to buy a bottle, take a look at the refillable bottles we have available in the Ailuna shop.  

 

Caring for your bottle

The best advice we can offer when it comes to looking after your refillable bottle, is to read the guidelines that come with the bottle when you buy it. Any specific cleaning or care instructions should be included and will give you any information that is unique to your bottle.

That said, there are still a few things that are pretty universal:

  • Keep it clean. Even though your bottle might only ever carry water, it still needs to be cleaned regularly. Screw caps, straws and sports caps can all be a breeding ground for mould and bacteria so make sure your bottle gets a thorough daily clean.
  • If your bottle’s nooks and crannies need a deeper clean, it might be worth investing in a set of small bottle brushes. They come in a variety of sizes and can help scrub the hard-to-reach parts of your bottle. This is a particularly good idea if you fill your bottle with anything other than water, as sugary or sticky drinks encourage bacteria growth faster than water.

 

Remembering to use your bottle

To begin with, you might find that you leave the house without your bottle or leave it at work because you’re not used to it being part of your life yet. Here are a few tips for making sure your bottle is always with you:

  • Firstly, if you need some help remembering to use your bottle, you might find our blog post on making habits stick useful. It’s filled with scientifically-proven methods to adopt a new habit and keep it long term.
  • Put a note somewhere you will see it, like on the fridge door or your steering wheel (not when you’re driving!). It can also be helpful to move the note around so you don’t get used to it being in one place and stop noticing it
  • Set a reminder on your phone or schedule an email to send to yourself every morning.
  • Fill it up and pop it in the fridge the night before you need it. Then, when you make your breakfast or morning coffee you’ll spot your bottle and remember to put it in your bag or by the door.
  • One slightly different trick is to leave your bottle (after washing it at night) at the last point of your morning routine. So, if brushing your teeth is your final job before heading out the door, put your bottle next to the sink. One member of the Ailuna team has been known to stuff their bottle into one of their shoes so they are forced to remember it when they’re putting their shoes on.
 
If you forget your bottle and you still want to avoid using a disposable one, try using a mug from your work kitchen if you’re at work. If you have no choice but to buy a disposable bottle, don’t worry! These things happen and you’ll be back on track tomorrow. If you want to, you could use that single use bottle to make an ecobrick – find out how here.

 

Good luck!

We hope these tips and tricks help you to start a brand new, eco-friendly habit. 

Remember, if you need any more help or advice, the Ailuna team is always available, or you could check out the community of others who are taking part or have already completed this dare.

You can do it!