Please re-read this post title in your best Joan Crawford “No..wire..Hangers!” impersonation. Do it over and over again until you annoy every living creature in your home. It could buy you a minute or two of some peace and quiet. People are always afraid of crazy… Anywhoo, there has been a lot of chatter lately about BPA-free plastics, as it relates to safety. The overwhelming message is that using plastic, in all of its “food safe” forms, for anything food or drink related is not safe.
I recently discovered Liberty Bottleworks. They’ve got aluminum bottles that I feel so good about using I was moved to write this product review. I will do my best to illustrate why these are the last reusable bottles that I will ever own.
Since this is the first review I am doing for Non-Toxic U, let me start out by stating that: when/if I do a product review, it is not because somebody sent me their product for free and asked me to do so. That’s not to say that I won’t gladly accept freebies post-review. I like free shit, just like everybody else. I especially like free shit that I LOVE using. I will only write positive reviews about the products that I stumble upon organically and truly deserve to be evangelized. I will not go out of my way to do a negative review but will give my opinion on specific products, if asked. I have a lot of opinions—some of them suck. This one does not.
Now that that’s out of the way…
As you (the reader) know, I have been working on phasing out plastics in my house…especially, when it comes to our food storage and serving items. We have gone through many iterations of what we use for water bottles/cups, etc. Throughout this journey, I have learned that you will have great difficulty finding a less reactive stainless steel bottle that is made in the US, because the EPA simply will not allow much manufacturing of this material. Production of stainless steel is not a clean enough process to be done here, which is why the bulk of it is made in other parts of the world that have lower environmental standards. This has now made me rethink all of the stainless steel I use (sigh). Also, just because an aluminum bottle is made outside the US, it doesn’t make it inferior to an aluminum bottle made here. There are other reasons why they are inferior, but country of origin is not necessarily one of them. Glass is great, but glass and children at school don’t necessarily mix. Often, glass is not welcome in this as well as other types of environments. This is why I have to drink my Tecate out of a can at the swim up bar. So really, my only other option is a lightweight metal bottle.
I recently had the pleasure of purchasing three bottles from Liberty Bottleworks, after stumbling upon their product through another website. I ordered: “Kraken” and “No Evil” from the Kids Collection, plus one from the Artisan Collection named “Stellar.” The artwork on these bottles is so cute, or if you have an aversion to the word cute, just swap it with the word cool. The bottle tops on the kids collection, which I believe are the sport tops, are fantastic. My OCD-orally fixated-labrador, I mean, son has not been able to chew through one yet, and they are super easy for him to use. The coating on them makes them a snap to clean as well. They came shipped in cardboard only, without the use of synthetic packing materials, or additional outer boxes. Already off to a good start, in my book.
Since I had decided I was going to do a review, I put in a call to Liberty Bottleworks’ corporate office and spoke to Amanda Watson, Executive Sales Director, to find out more. What was so special about their bottles and why I should be using them? When I got off of the phone I had decided that I had found my life partner and we would officially be spending the rest of our days together. No, not Amanda, the bottles…I am sure Amanda is quite a catch, but alas she is already spoken for.
I am almost 100% certain that I will not need to look any further for a solution. These bottles are;
– Made in America by Americans, in a zero waste factory in Washington’s Yakima Valley
– The only waste free factory in the world that produces reusable aluminum bottles
– Practices ethical discrimination by giving hiring preferences to our country’s veterans
– “Pure Shield” coating on the inside and out to prevent leaching into liquids as well as onto fingers and hands
– Specially designed closures that do not freeze onto your bottle, and can withstand pressure up to 50 psi
– Will continue expanding product offering
Let’s start with the first bullet point and work our way down. I know a lot of parents out there are taking a long hard look at their buying habits and trying to make a conscious effort to buy things that are made in America. The reasons to do so are many, but so are the challenges. Liberty Bottleworks provide excellent products at reasonable prices that you can feel great about buying and use for many, many, years to come. In fact, they’ll probably last longer than you.
No other manufacturer of reusable water bottles can claim such a small carbon footprint. They track all of their materials and ensures that all scraps are turned back into new bottles. Theirs is the only zero waste factory of its kind in the world. How awesome is that?
They hire veterans whenever possible… Enough said.
They have developed a special non-porous powder coating that they call “Pure Shield.” This FDA approved coating is applied to the inside and outside of their bottles to prevent any leaching into your liquids or onto your hands and lips. This isn’t such a big deal with water, but for juices, sodas and other liquids it is pretty important, as the PH of liquids can have a significant impact on the reactivity of aluminum. This powder in its raw state is completely edible and harmless. Even glass is not totally non-porous. You can put virtually anything that you drink in here and let it sit for long periods of time and not experience any staining or residual smells, once washed out.
They have also designed a closure that with a quarter turn, seals your liquidy goodness inside. These lids do not freeze onto your bottles, nor do they allow bacteria to enter. This seal can withstand pressure up to 50 psi—they are already testing beer growlers and have had success. Being a big fermenter myself, I had to put this to the test. I did a secondary ferment of my kombucha in one of these bottles, and after day 4 the lid was clearly stressed and getting a little wonky, but still did not break the seal on the bottle. I have no way of measuring the psi in my kombucha, but what I can tell you is that it is as fizzy as champagne and typically champagne runs at 70-90 psi per bottle. These bottles may not be the best choice in this type of fermenting, but I can definitely store my finished booch in one of their fine growlers without worrying about the high acidity leaching chemicals into my beverage, or heavy tea and juice stains left on the inner lining all while knowing without a doubt that it will remain fizzy and delicious until the last drop.
They are working on several new products while utilizing these same practices and I look forward to seeing what comes next in the way of their product offerings. I personally would like to see an entire line of to-go containers for food and beverages, but I do not own this company…nor do I work there. The best that I can do is, cross my fingers.
I really do love this company and their products. I encourage you to go and purchase these bottles to replace all of the ones you are currently using. I also encourage you to buy them as gifts for people you love so they too can have a safe bottle to drink out of.
Remember, I get no commission on these things—I just believe in them that much. Check out their facebook page for current promotions, if any. Give them a like and pass on their awesomeness to your other friends. One thing that resonated with me is that when asked if there was anything else she wanted to share about Liberty Bottleworks, Amanda simply said, “This is the first company I have worked for that does the right thing…just because it is the right thing to do and that is a really good feeling.” She clearly loves her job.
Well what are you waiting for?!? Go. Shop. When your bottles arrive take a giant gulp of non-toxic drinkatude and check one more thing off of your list of things to worry about. They also do custom bottles for a minimum order of 75. I am going to try and get our school to order some, and if NTU ever makes a profit, I’ll be placing an order as well.