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Stanley Vs. Yeti Tumblers: Our Tested Review

Jul 23, 2023Jul 23, 2023

Both are wildly popular, leaving consumers divided. This is where our editors stand.

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Food & Wine / Matt-Taylor Goss

If there’s one thing we can agree on, insulated tumblers have etched their way into society — and into our hands. At this point, always-chilled drinks (now accessible through reusable straws) are paramount in today’s world, whether on the go or while working from home.

Two have emerged as easy favorites: Stanley’s Quencher H2.0 Flowstate Tumbler and Yeti’s Rambler. Both oversized tumblers have insulated stainless steel bases that promise to keep drinks cold or hot for hours on end and come equipped with easy-carry handles and straws. While similar in concept, the two drinkware options have left the brands’ enthusiasts divided, garnering loyalty for one over the other.

So, which popular tumbler-style mug is right for you? We put the Stanley and Yeti models in head-to-head tests, checking in on temperature control, design, and spillage. Read on for our results.

To determine which cup is superior at maintaining temperature, we filled each one with hot coffee and chilled water, testing the bottles' internal temperature after every few hours and up to 24. We also performed a leakage test, tipping the bottles on their sides and noting whether water seeped through their lids or the straw gaps. Finally, we assessed their design, taking into consideration capacities and lid and straw design.

Food & Wine / Matt Taylor-Gross

The Stanley has carved its little (now viral) corner on TikTok, emerging as a cultural staple — a big departure from its humble camping roots. To its loyalists, it’s more than just a vessel to carry drinks in. Rather, it’s a permanent accessory, joining in car rides, airport trips, evening walks, and morning workouts.

The Stanley comes in two sizes, 30 and 40 ounces, giving its larger option a leg up in capacity compared to the Yeti, which maxes out at 35 ounces. While the 40-ounce option is particularly large and can get heavy, it still has a cup holder-friendly base for travel convenience. The double-walled vacuum-insulated base is made of BPA-Free, 90% recycled 18/8 stainless steel, and all pieces are dishwasher-safe.

The Quencher currently comes in up to 14 colors, with trendy choices like Cream, Rose Quartz, and Fog. Its numerous pastel and matte colorways are a big reason it’s so popular. We also love its rotating screw-on lid, which features three variations: a straw opening, an opening to drink without a straw, and a rotating piece that locks into place to fully cover your drink.

During testing, the Stanley outperformed the Yeti by just a few degrees in the hot beverage test. At the start, our thermometer read 166 degrees Fahrenheit. After six hours, the coffee only dropped 30 degrees; by 24 hours, it was still warm at 111 degrees. Our editors also noted no noticeable staining or leftover aroma. When it came time to test how well it retained ice water, the Stanley held its cool temperature for 24 hours (even in 85-degree weather), only dropping by one degree. Of course, conditions and use will affect the container’s temperature. If you live in a warmer climate or are handling your drinkware frequently, your cup will likely warm faster. We also like that the exterior is never too cold to the touch.

Food & Wine / Matt Taylor-Gross

The 14- and 20-ounce sizes do not come with a handle, and the 40-ounce can almost feel too cumbersome or difficult to drink out of if not using the straw. Our editors also noticed its lid and straw didn’t feel as durable as the Yeti.

In addition, the tumbler isn’t quite leakproof as water spilled from the lid when we flipped it on its side. That said, with its large size, it’s unlikely you’d throw the container in your bag.

Food & Wine / Matt Taylor-Gross

While Yeti has been in the tumbler game for a while, this past fall, the brand added a handle to its large tumbler lineup. Known for built-to-last, quality coolers, it’s no surprise that Yeti also makes top-notch insulated drinkware.

The Yeti Rambler comes in 25- and 35-ounce capacities and seven colorways, including their newest additions, Canopy Green and High Desert Clay. Yeti touts its pieces as dishwasher-safe and encourages lids to be placed on the top rack and straws in the utensil basket.

During our heat temperature tests, the Yeti lost heat more quickly than the Stanley, though the coffee still felt pretty warm after a full day, and no trace of aroma or staining was evident in the mug. During our ice water test, similar to the Stanley, it only heated up by a single degree after almost an entire day.

Compared to the Stanley, we preferred the Yeti’s firmer straw, and both the straw and lid felt more durable on the Yeti. In addition, we appreciate its molded-in straw stopper that ensures you won’t lose your straw when traveling. We also appreciate the easy pop-on lid that felt secure, even when tipped over.

Food & Wine / Matt Taylor-Gross

If you’re looking for the largest size in a tumbler, the Yeti’s biggest option only reaches 35 ounces. And while we appreciate the addition of the handle, it’s a bit small for larger hands, especially in the smaller 20-ounce version. Yeti offers versions in 10-, 20-, and 30-ounce capacities without a handle.

However, unlike the universal Stanley lid, you must swap lids when switching from a hot beverage to a cold one that mandates a straw. And while the straw stopper is a nice perk that gatekeeps your straw, it still didn’t stop water from leaking during our leak test.

Both brands offer a warranty should the drinkware falter. Stanley offers a lifetime warranty, while Yeti offers a five-year warranty.

We hate to say it, but it comes down to personal preference. With only a slight difference in temperature retention during testing, we don’t feel one cup reigns far superior. If you’re looking for a reputable tumbler to keep your drink’s temperature at bay, both will do a great job.

If you’re looking for a larger option, turn to the Stanley. With a 40-ounce capacity as its largest size, it holds more liquid than the Yeti. And if you tend to lean towards pastel colorways, we also recommend the Stanley. If you don’t mind swapping lids to enjoy your favorite beverage, the Yeti offers a smooth drinking experience with its higher-quality straw and straw stopper. We also prefer its easy pop-on, pop-off lid, but again, that comes down to personal preference.

In the end, you can’t go wrong with either option. We’ll continue reaching for both, and we suspect with quality products coming from each brand, we’ll be keeping our eye out for new tumbler innovations from both Yeti and Stanley.