If you’re like me, you’ve been hearing a lot about plastic straws in the media lately, and none of the information is very positive.
Maybe you have a box of 200 plastic straws that you are working through and do not want to buy any more when they are finished.
Perhaps you’re ready to ditch plastic straws and switch to some reusable ones when you finally use up the. last. straw.
Well, you’ve come to the right place! I have definitely been in that same situation and I want to help make your transition to reusable straws just that much easier.
Welcome to my in-depth review of stainless steel straws! I am confident that by the end of this article, you will know whether or not they are the reusable straw choice for you.
The topics I will be covering are:
- Ingredients Deep-dive
- Label Claims
- Manufacturer Sustainability Model
- Product Packaging
- Where to Purchase
We’ve got a lot to cover, so let’s just jump into it, shall we?
I will be judging the stainless steel straw’s performance on cold liquids, hot liquids, and thick liquids.
Cold liquids: I chose to use good ole water for this test.
- the straws do get cold, but not enough to make them unenjoyable to use
- there was a hint of metallic taste, again not enough to make me not want to use them
- I did knock my teeth a few times while drinking my mason jar full of water, perhaps with more use that will become less of an issue
Hot liquids: Coffee was the choice here.
- the straws heat up- I could definitely feel my lips burning, I would NOT use for hot drinks
- did not taste any metallic flavor, possibly because my lips and tongue were burning
Thick liquids: My daily delicious smoothie was the lucky test subject.
- I have to pull a little harder than I would like, still usable though
- no metallic taste
- being a cold drink, the straws did cool down, but again nothing unbearable
- no metallic taste with hot liquids or smoothies
- all length of straws are good for using with tall glasses such as mason jars
- the shortest straw is a good length for mugs and smaller glasses
- straws get cold or hot depending on the liquid temperature
- there is a metallic taste when drinking water
- potential teeth knockers
- diameter is a little small for comfortable thick smoothie drinking
- tall straws are too long for regular sized cups
Stainless steel straws are fairly low maintenance. I recommend rinsing them out when you have finished your drink if you’re at home so the contents don’t stick to the inside of the straw.
However, if you’re out on the town or just forgot, rinsing them isn’t totally necessary since they come with cleaning brushes.
Just let them soak in the dishwater for a few minutes to loosen up the gunk and brush it away. Easy.
You might be thinking, ‘I don’t have time to wash every. single. straw. Can I throw these in the dishwasher?’
Are stainless steel straws Dishwasher Safe?
Short answer: Yes.
Explanation: While you can throw them into the dishwasher to clean, you still need to rinse them out first.
In my opinion, since you’re already at the sink rinsing them, grab the cleaning brush and scrub them out. Bam. Done. Ready for the next use.
There is but one ingredient:
18/8 Stainless Steel
If you’re like me, this doesn’t mean a whole lot to you. Honestly, I get a little nervous when I see fractions. Maybe I have some repressed math anxiety from elementary school or something.
Anyhoo, please humour me for a moment while I briefly explain the food grades of stainless steel, so I don’t get a nervous twitch every time I see them.
For the sake of this article, I am going to examine 18/8 grade since that is what these straws are made from. Makes sense, eh?
My friends at insteading.com know what’s up, they’re going to help shine a light on these mystery numbers.
First, the 18 in this mystery fraction refers to the amount of chromium present. In this case, that would be 18%.
What is the purpose of chromium, you ask? Well, metal experts at aalco can help us out.
- increases the metal’s resistance to oxidation
- adds to corrosion resistance (the higher the percentage, the more resistant)
- the corrosion resistance is due to the formation of a self-repairing layer of Chromium Oxide on the surface of the stainless steel
Let’s not forget the second part of the fraction, the 8, which represents the amount of nickel present. In this case, that would be 8%.
- added to high chromium stainless steels
- together they form austenitic stainless steel
- responsible for a great toughness (impact strength) and high strength at both high and low temperatures
- greatly improves resistance to oxidation and corrosion
Clear as mud, right? Let me sum this up a little bit.
The chromium is used as an anticorrosive (your straws won’t rust) and the nickel gives it strength, which means stainless steel straws should be rust-free and durable.
I’d say those are two pretty good (and required) qualities to have in a reusable straw!
Since these particular stainless steel straws came in a velvet bag wrapped in plastic (more on that in the packaging section), there are no label claims per se.
Here is a screenshot of their claims:
I measured the straws independently and then compared them to the information on Amazon, and they measure up (corny pun intended!). Here are my results:
Diameter for all the straws are 0.5cm or 0.2″
The length for all the straws are as follows:
Tall Bent: 25cm or almost 10″
Short Bent: 20.5cm or almost 8″
Tall Straight: 26.5cm or 10.5″
Short Straight: 21.7cm or 8.5″
Made from 18/8 Stainless Steel: You have to trust that is what these straws are made from. There is nothing physically on the product indicating the grade of stainless steel used.
Non-toxic: The chromium and nickel used to make 18/8 stainless steel are non-toxic elements.
BPA Free: Stainless steel straws are in fact, BPA free
Lead Free: Lead is not used to make stainless steel products.
No Metal Aftertaste: I tasted metal while drinking water, but no other liquid had an aftertaste.
Unbreakable: I’m not sure if anything in day-to-day use can be called unbreakable, but the chromium/nickel combo make these straws pretty tough.
Will Not Rust, Crack, or be Scratched: 18/8 stainless steel is austenitic, which means they are solid. They are anti-corrosive, heat resistant, hold up to cold temperatures, and are scratch resistant as well.
Sturdy and Strong: Yes, as just mentioned, the austenitic properties of 18/8 stainless steel means these things are TOUGH.
Easy to Clean: I can vouch for this, they rinse out easily and come with two cleaning brushes to make cleaning a super easy, simple process.
Broad Usage: I mean, as broad of a usage as any other straw, I guess. I wouldn’t use them for anything other than drinking liquids out of a cup. They won’t clean your bathroom or anything!
Overall, their claims are pretty legit. I covered them throughout this review, and they appear to be true. I could do without the spelling mistake, but what can you do. Leave a comment down below if you spot it!
I honestly have no idea what the sustainability model of this stainless steel straw manufacturer is.
This is because I don’t know who makes them.
I have the name of the seller on Amazon, but they did not actually make the product, they are a distribution company.
I apologize, I goofed on this one. I didn’t do my due diligence before I ordered to ensure I was supporting an eco-friendly company.
Let this be a lesson for us all, I guess. Learn from my mistakes.
I’m not going to lie, I was underwhelmed with the packaging of these straws.
The straws came in a black velvet bag wrapped in plastic.
One of the main reasons for ordering these stainless steel straws was so I didn’t need to keep buying plastic straws.
Plastic bags are not recyclable in my municipality, so it was definitely a bummer that I could not recycle any of the packaging these straws came with.
I do, however, dig the black velvet storage bag they came in.
It’s really handy for throwing a couple of straws in and sticking it in my purse before I go out somewhere.
The storage bag is also big enough to roll a paper towel or small cloth in to wipe the straws with after I have used them before they go back into the storage bag. Just keeps things a little cleaner.
Overall, the packaging was minimal. I just could have done without the outer plastic wrap.
I touched on this in the previous section.
These stainless steel straws come with a velvet storage bag, which makes taking them out to places pretty easy.
If you are not used to having to remember to pack your straws before you go out somewhere, there may be a bit of a learning curve.
As with anything new, you will get used to it after a while and it will just be the normal thing that you do.
Where To Purchase
You can purchase these stainless steel straws on Amazon (of course!). Here are a couple of links if you like what you have read so far.
For my American Friends:
For my Canadian Friends:
As you can see from the Amazon links above, the price for these straws is pretty reasonable.
As of the time of this post, the price for my American friends is a pithy $7.99.
That works out to around $1.00 per reusable straw. Not too shabby in my opinion.
As for my Canadian friends, the price is a little steeper at $13.99 for the 8 straws.
This works out to around $1.75 per straw.
Again, seeing how you probably won’t have to buy straws ever again, I think the price is worth it.
What happens if you change your mind about your stainless steel straws?
You’ve had them for a while and you’re ready to trade them in for a new style of reusable straw, perhaps bamboo or glass.
There are a couple of options for you.
- Pass them on to someone else. Let someone else enjoy the magnificence of stainless steel straws. They basically last forever so it’s not like you’re passing along something old and deteriorated. Just load them up in the velvet bag they came in and make someone’s day.
- Recycle them. YES! They are recyclable! Although they may not curbside recyclable, you may have to drop them off at a scrap metal facility. Check with your municipality’s recycling program to be sure. Just google it, it will only take a second!
I am going to assume you want alternatives to reusable straws, so I am not going to mention the abominable plastic disposable straw here. (UGH! I just mentioned it, I will not give it the satisfaction and mention it again!)
After reading this review, you decide that stainless steel straws don’t float your boat, don’t give up on reusable straws just yet. Perhaps one of these straw materials will speak to you:
- Glass: non-corrosive, will not absorb flavours or smells, less likely to get super hot or super cold
- Silicone: flexible, may be a good alternative for kiddos
- Bamboo: no added dyes or chemicals used, lasts for years
Want more stainless steel straw options?
Here ya go.
For My American Friends:
For my Canadian Friends:
I am a firm believer that small changes we make at home can have a HUGE impact on our earth.
Let’s be the change we want to see. As cliche as it sounds, change starts with you and me. Wow, I just rhymed, didn’t mean to, it just happened! Anyways, let’s go with it.
Say it with me:
Let’s be the change we want to see,
Change starts with you and me.
So what are you waiting for? Get inspired by my butchered Gandhi quote.
Take the plunge and order your reusable straws TODAY!
Please leave any comments or questions down below. What type of reusable straw is your favourite? What other eco-friendly products would you like reviewed?