Product Type: Tommee Tippee kids equipment
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Quenching Sporty Toddlers!
Tommee Tippee Tip It Up Sportster
Member Name: jo1976
Tommee Tippee Tip It Up Sportster
Date: 23/02/13, updated on 13/10/13 (56 review reads)
Advantages: Easy to drink from, robust bottles, non spill with cover in place, easy to clean
Disadvantages: More expensive than similar products, cover easy to mislay
As my youngest son gets older, I still find myself searching for that elusive product - the perfect drink container that is easy for him to drink from, portable and leakproof, whilst also meeting his need for increasing independence. He is perfectly capable of drinking from an open cup but he has an annoying tendency of tipping the contents all over his plate, happily turning every meal into soup!
I've used Tommee Tippee products for several years and have, for the most part, been impressed with the quality and durability of their range. That is why I picked up a couple of Tommee Tippee's 'Sportster' drinking bottles, part of their ever-evolving range of baby and toddler products. I purchased them from Sainsbury's during one of their fairly frequent baby promotions but the standard price is £3.99 per bottle, which seems a little on the expensive side compared to similar bottles on the market.
This 'Sportster' design is quite a large capacity bottle, holding an impressive 450ml of liquid, designed for children from 12 months upwards. I'd actually recommend this for slightly older toddlers as the bottle is pretty large and Tommee Tippee offer similar products that would be slightly more practical for younger toddlers, to avoid wastage. My youngest son is two years old and this bottle comfortably holds enough water (or juice) to last throughout a day's outing, although I do tend to freshen it up during the day to avoid the drink acquiring an unpleasant plasticy taste.
The design of these bottles is fairly eye-catching, coming in a range of bright colours including some neutral shades as well as the more gender-specific pink and blue shades. Ours are a cheery orange shade with a contrasting red outer ring. Despite being quite a large bottle, it has been cleverly shaped to ensure that small hands can hold this securely. The middle of the bottle is tapered and their are ridged sections around the central section which help to make the surface non-slip, even when carried about by sticky toddler hands. The bottle itself is pretty strong, with only a slight give to the surface, helping it to avoid any cracks or damage if dropped or thrown. Despite its size, the lightweight plastic means that it isn't too heavy for little ones to carry independently but it does take up quite a lot of room in my changing bag.
Crucially, the design of these bottles and the silicone 'straw' section, makes them incredibly easy for my son to drink from without creating too much mess. Only a slight pressure from the mouth or teeth is needed to open the small slit which then releases the liquid. This design is very similar to the smaller 'Active Bottles' that I've previously used and is a system that my son is able to use comfortably without needing to suck excessively. Unlike the smaller bottles, the drinking section is slightly longer and thinner, designed to resemble a soft straw as part of a transition to the more rigid style of straw generally offered by older children's drinking bottles. The benefit of this design is that it is slightly more difficult for a toddler's chunky figures to poke down the drinking hole and release drink everywhere or risk damaging the fairly fragile silicone material, which my son managed to do to with the smaller bottles from the same range.
To support the bottle's 'non spill' claim, these bottles come supplied with a clear lid which covers the spout completely and helps to contain any drips that the bottle may accidentally release when being carried about in a changing bag. The lid is pretty effectively and forms a secure cover, although I would prefer if the lid was actually attached to the bottle itself in some way, as I find it easy to mislay these covers, particularly as they are transparent. Without the lid, these bottles are by no means non-spill!
As I'd expect from a high quality brand such as Tommee Tippee, the bottles are BPA free and suitable for use in sterilisers, microwaves and dishwashers. Due to the large size of the bottles, I was a little worried as to whether they would be too tall to fit on the top shelf in our dishwasher but they do just manage to fit in upright to ensure a thorough and hygienic clean after use. From a practical perspective, the separate components are easy to dismantle and clean separately, with the silicone 'straw' section coming away from the plastic outer ring, which screws securely on and off the main body of the bottle. Despite the ridges, the bottles have proven to be easy to keep clean and the shiny surface of the plastic seems to repel dirt and marks. Surprisingly, neither the bottles nor the teats have started to discolour despite regular use in a dishwasher.
I do like this style of bottle and feel that this particular design lives up to the reputation of Tommee Tippee products. I would recommend this for older toddlers from around eighteen months old, due to the large proportions and capacity of this bottle. This is a easy to use, durable and practical drinking bottle that offers value for money, even at the full RRP of £3.99.
Summary: A good quality, easy to use and durable drinking bottle for toddlers and pre-schoolers
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