Thermos vs Stanley: The 2 Most Popular Thermal Bottles

Thermos and Stanley create some of the most popular thermal bottles today. They are very popular with parents who want to pack lunches for their kids. Also, public workers often use them to keep their liquids hot or cold when they are outside all day. But you can also take these camping in the great outdoors, as they are good enough to withstand a bit of abuse.

There is credit debate on which of these two companies create the best thermal bottles. But we have collected all of the information needed to make an informed decision as to which of these bottles is the best. As such, we have created our Thermos vs Stanley comparison.

Below are all of the key contention points concerning thermal bottles that either make or break a decision to make a purchase. This is why we have created a category for each and explain how the Thermos and Stanley hold up to the standard.

Insulation Efficiency

There is a general consensus that Thermos bottles hold in heat and cold longer than the Stanley. Some say that the difference is small, while others have noticed a very significant difference between them.

One customer said that their Stanley bottle held ice for about six hours until they melted. But in comparison, the Thermos bottle held ice for two days. They also noted that their Stanley bottle let some heat escape from the boiling water that they added. The Stanley bottle felt warm to the touch after adding hot water, thus suggesting that there is a degradation that happens over time. This only happened a few months after the purchase and occasional use the Stanley.

Some customers have tested both in comparison to each other. They have noted the slight difference in the amount of time that it takes for hot water to cool off. It takes longer for water to cool off in the Thermos than it does in the Stanley bottle. This is in comparison between two bottles of the same size.


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Ease of Use

Side Handle

You may have noticed that the Stanley bottle has a side handle. Some people may like this because it makes it easy to carry for long periods of time. However, the handle is rather noisy and can get in the way when you are trying to take a drink out of the bottle. Many people feel that the handle is just not necessary.

Lid Grip

The Stanley has a better grip on its lid. This is perhaps one of the best features of the Stanley over the Thermos. Since cooling liquids tend to create a vacuum, it can sometimes be more difficult to take off the lid. This is where a Stanley lid can come in handy. The Thermos lid only has small ridges. If you tend to have issues opening thermal bottles, the Stanley might be your best bet.

Cup Size

The built-in size of the Stanley is twice as large as the cup size of the Thermos. For many people, this does not matter since they are not using the cup to drink out of.


The Thermos and a Stanley bottles come in various shapes and sizes depending on the volume capacity. But based on the same volume capacity, the Stanley bottle is significantly larger than the Thermos. Oddly, it has a rather large base that does not really serve much of a purpose. It takes up unnecessary space in lunch boxes and backpacks.

The Thermos bottles are also narrower than the Stanley bottles. And, without a handle on the side, the Thermos bottles will be easier to put into a cup holder.


As mentioned previously, customers have noted that after a few months of use, the Stanley bottles tend to lose their thermal protection. The fully stainless steel Thermos bottles feel like they are more durable and of higher quality.

Price Comparison

The Thermos vacuum insulated bottles are slightly pricier than the Stanley vacuum bottles. If you would like to see current prices, please see below:

The Verdict

We have a preference for the Thermos bottles over the Stanley ones. The Thermos bottle seem to be of higher quality. They hold in heat and cold for longer, and fit better into cup holders. The Stanley bottles seem to include some features that are not very useful. For example, it has a large base which does not really serve much of a purpose. This makes it significantly larger than Thermos bottles of the same volume capacity. Stanley bottles, with their handles and larger base, don’t fit into backpacks and lunch boxes as easily as Thermos bottles.

Overall, the majority of reviewers of these two bottles prefer the Thermos over the Stanley. is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Some links may be affiliate links. We may get paid if you buy something or take an action after clicking one of these

4 thoughts on “Thermos vs Stanley: The 2 Most Popular Thermal Bottles”

  1. Hey thanks for this very helpful comparison! I have been back and forth on Amazon debating on which to buy. I appreciate finding your review.

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