No, you don’t need another Stanley

Hoarding reusable bottles is far from eco-friendly

Graphic Adam Gibbard

Look, I love a cute water bottle. I have a knock-off Stanley from Winners and a Starbucks tumbler that are both precious to me. However, there’s a fat chance you’ll see me buying any more water bottles anytime soon.

Over the past few years, there’s always been some sort of ultra trendy water bottle that everyone just had to have. From Hydroflasks to Stanleys, there’s always a must-have accessory in water bottle form. 

I'm not saying you shouldn't buy reusable water bottles (hot people stay hydrated). I’m just saying that if you buy a bottle, don’t buy three more because you want them in different colours. Buying one in a new shade of green doesn’t make the environment any greener itself.

First off, where are y'all getting the money for this? These bougie bottles are pricey, and I’m talking $20 to $50 each kind of pricey. You could use your money in a much better way. Go get brunch! Get your nails done! Go to a yoga mom workout class! Whatever it is that floats your boat, you could use that extra cash you saved by not buying another bottle(girl math!). 

Secondly, you are not saving the planet the way you think you are. Buying a ton of so-called reusable water bottles just to throw some away everytime a new one starts trending isn't sustainable.

When comparing a disposable bottle to a reusable one, the reusable bottle is only more sustainable if you use it at least every working day for a month. Those bottles sitting in the back of your cabinet aren’t exactly doing the world any good. Even then, they only have a teeny tiny bit less of an environmental impact than your run-of-the-mill disposable bottles.

As long as your bottle doesn't get severely damaged and you maintain it, you’re set for years. Part of Stanley’s marketing is how durable they are, they want you to hold on to your bottle for as long as possible, not throw it away for the aesthetic. 

Now, I won’t judge too harshly. Get yourself two if you want, just don’t go overboard with it. All it does is either take up a bunch of space in your home or create more waste than regular plastic bottles would. 

At least plastic bottles are recyclable. Your Stanley is so well-made that it’s a lot harder to get rid of. 

All this aside, I won’t tell you how to live your life. All I’ll ask is to be conscious of your environmental impact instead of seeing the word reusable and thinking you’re Greta Thunberg for buying it. 

Reusable water bottles are cute and staying hydrated is so important, but we should be taking care of the planet and not just ourselves. Green should be more than just the colour you buy your bottle in, but as long as you’re actually drinking water and not exclusively consuming caffeine, I’m all for it. 

This article originally appeared in Volume 44, Issue 4, published October 17, 2023.