This morning I ran out to buy sippy cups. My 14 month old son is now using them exclusively and we only owned 3 for him. 1 leaked terribly when he discovered he could squeeze the top and spill milk. The other two were pretty good but we misplaced one of course. I had purposely bought 3 different designs to test them out on him. I also wanted to determine if they were easy to keep clean and wash since so many have valves that are hard to reach with a normal bottle brush. I have been known to use toothpicks and q-tips to clean them. And then they get too gross to ever clean again and I throw them out.
So, here are the results of my tests, from not bad to better to best:
Not bad: This cup is good for transition stage from bottles, around 1 year to 14 months, because the silicone nipple is really pliable, easily washable, and it comes with a cover too (which I of course misplace the first time I use it outside the house). It also had two handles coming from the cover that make it easy for baby to hold. Unfortunately, baby has learned to squeeze the milk out of the nipple. Also, the nipple spins as you seal the cap so that it isn't always positioned in between the handles. I have since mastered the skill of screwing the cap on and getting the nipple centered!
Better: Gerber Nuk cup has a soft nipple spout that is durable and still bends. The cup has a nuk valve which is better than playtex valves, which are hard to clean. Nuk valves are short and easy to reach with the small side of a basic bottle brush. The only down side I found to this cup is that the handles are positioned at the base of the cup so I can't throw it into the side pocket of my diaper bag or place it in the stroller or high chair cup holder because the base is too wide.
Best: Gerber makes the same cup only slightly larger and with handles at the top! This is it, the winner! I bought 2 more today and I am happy to use these!
This post may be completely irrelevant to you (sorry), or may actually help you choose your favorite sippy cup!