For outdoor enthusiasts and those who want to save space and weight, soft water bottles are increasingly popular. They offer enormous benefits when hiking, camping, traveling, or in everyday life.
While standard bottles are quite bulky, these gourds can be folded up and are therefore incredibly space-saving. Besides, they are reusable and thus respectful of the environment!
Here you will find the particularly recommended models, the differences, and the points to watch out for purchasing.
The best flexible water bottles
Kemier – Collapsible silicone water bottle
- Tank: 0.75 Liters
- Weight: 155g
- Temperature range: -40°C to + 100°C
- Material: BPA free silicone
- Dimension (inflated): 75 × 75 × 75 × 250mm
Kemier’s reusable squeeze bottle has a lot to offer. In addition to a chic design, the bottle with a capacity of 0.75 liters has a practical flap cap that allows it to be opened with one hand.
Ideal for sports, the outdoors, and travel!
The closure has a safety valve and an air release button to allow comfortable drinking from the squeeze bottle. Also, the cap can be unscrewed for easier filling and cleaning of the gourd.
Depending on what you want to do, you can use the gourd as a sports bottle (with a sports cap), a typical collapsible gourd with a wide mouth, or a water bottle with a classic screw cap.
The material used is BPA-free and odorless silicone. The bottle is certified and approved by the United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA). The only small point of criticism: as the material is not entirely transparent, depending on the color, the fill level is not visible from the outside (e.g., in color black).
This flexible water bottle meets all the requirements of an entirely collapsible water bottle and is, therefore, the winner of the comparison!
TriWonder – Soft waterproof TPU and Silicone water bottle
- Tank: 2 x 250 Milliliters
- Weight: 60g
- Temperature range: 0°C to 40°C
- Material: TPU and silicone nozzle
- Dimensions: 24.99 x 14 x 3.51 cm.
This collapsible bottle is trendy due to its bright colors and has received many good reviews from customers.
The water bottle is equipped with a cap with a plastic ring to tighten the lid and prevent leakage.
The TPU and silicone material is food-safe, does not contain any harmful substances, and can be hand washed without a problem.
This flexible water bottle is very robust. It can be used at work; you slip it empty in your lunch bag and just fill it up when you get to work. The gourd is odorless and seems easy to keep clean.
Nalgene – Soft bottle
- Tank: 1 to 3 Liters
- Weight: 90g
- Temperature range: -29°C to + 100°C
- Material: polyethylene film
- Dimensions: 34 x 25 x 8 cm
Nalgene’s drinking bag might not be the strongest visually, but it’s very high quality! Nalgene is one of the TOP brands when it comes to the production of outdoor water bottles.
This PE film water bag is convenient and can be cleaned and reused thanks to its large closure.
Compared to other models, this flexible water bottle is also extremely light. The empty weight of the 1-liter version is only 60g! The collapsible water bottle is available in a 1 L, 1.5 L, or 3 L version.
One can hardly imagine the handling and consumption of 3 liters of water. The sizeable 3L bag works best as a small water container, while the other models are convenient outdoor soft water bottles.
Flexible water bottle what should you check when purchasing.
Foldable water bottles are very often made of silicone or medical and food PE film. However, the most important thing is that the material is free from BPA, plasticizers, and harmful substances. Also, it should be tasteless and odorless.
Transparent materials can also be an advantage. This makes it possible to see the bottle’s fill level, but even if any dirt or mold has formed.
There are sports water bottles with a classic screw cap, a snap cap, and many other variations. For me, the lid must be large enough that the bottle is easy to clean and, of course, leak-proof.
Depending on your activity, the choice of the cap can be substantial.
The flexible water bottle must be waterproof; it is an obligation! Whether you attach it to the outside of your backpack or put it inside, it should not leak in any way. This is the case for all flexible gourds, but I invite you to check the customer reviews to be sure!
Is the water bottle easily collapsible? Are there carabiners to attach it to the outside of the backpack? Note: I have never used carabiners to tie up my water bottles, but if I had to, I would only do so if they are empty to keep the sun from beating down on them. But depending on your projects, this can be important.
The amount of liquid the flexible gourd should contain depends on what you plan to do. I like to go hiking with 1.5-liter bottles (because you can’t fill up with water everywhere and all the time), 0.5-1 liter is quite sufficient in our daily travel life.
In general, capacities between 0.5 and 1.5 liters are typical. Larger or smaller versions are also available, but less frequently.
Is the flexible water bottle or collapsible water bottle easy to clean? Is the cap large enough that the inside of the bottle can be cleaned with a small brush, for example? Is the bottle dishwasher safe?
In my opinion, the ease of cleaning is one of the most important criteria because otherwise, an unpleasant odor can develop, and the flexible gourd can quickly become unusable.
Collapsible gourds are produced either in the form of squeezable bottles or in the form of bags. The shape of the gourd is very similar to that of an ordinary reusable bottle.
The decisive difference, however, is that they can be easily folded or rolled up. On the other hand, Drink bags are relatively unstable (mainly when empty) but too light and flat.
There is no more honest feedback than customer reviews. On the one hand, people like to complain when they’re dissatisfied, and on the other hand, customer reviews represent a wealth of independent practice tests.
While insulation can play a role in regular drink bottles, keeping warm in flexible gourds is relatively trivial.
However, it is still crucial that the squeeze bottle be filled with hot drinks (e.g., boiled water) if you do not have a water filter.
As always, expectations are based on the price, which should just match the product’s quality!
Which flexible water bottle should I put in my backpack?
It is precisely this question that arises at the latest when you prepare your backpack or hiking bag. Because as soon as you become physically active, a regular intake of water is essential. This is especially important if you are in remote areas to hike. Often you know that you will be stopping somewhere in a shelter where you can get something to drink. So it is always useful to consult a map before a hike or check the internet if there are resting places with food and drink offers on the planned route.
It is often said that you should consume about half a liter per hour as soon as you start playing sports. However, too many factors often play a role in making this a hard rule. For example, some people sweat more than others when hiking, the outside temperature can cause more or less fluid loss, or even humidity can play a role because it is primarily the season of the planned hike that plays a role. In summer, or when the weather is nice and warmer, it is undoubtedly advisable to go with a little more liquid in your bag than when the sky is overcast, and the temperatures are colder.
But the most important thing is that in any case, you have enough liquid with you so as not to end up in the middle of the hike with a dry mouth and a very unpleasant feeling of thirst. Even if a mountain hut has water very often, it is preferable to choose a flexible gourd of a volume slightly more significant than the duration of the hike. For short outdoor trips or short hikes, a smaller volume bottle may suffice. If you want to be safe and know that you are going to pass by streams or lakes, you can equip yourself with a gourd with a built-in water filter and simply fill it without having to search for a drinking water tap in a refuge.
We see that there are several practical models of flexible gourds. They are all very light, and it doesn’t add much extra weight, especially when the bottle is empty.
This is because a collapsible water bottle is less stable than, for example, a plastic or stainless steel water bottle, but it has the advantage of being able to be rolled up by hand and of being small when not. Not met. But in a half-empty state, it can happen that a flexible gourd no longer stands up so securely.
Likewise, when cleaning, flexible water bottles are in no way inferior to their non-foldable colleagues. In most cases, they can be washed in the dishwasher without a problem.
In any case, it is perfect for sports because it is just as light, and once empty, it can be folded easily. I also take it with me when hiking to replace a water bottle, as it doesn’t take up space when empty and can be easily attached to the hiking backpack with the carabiner.