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The modern hot-water bottle has been used for over 100 years but with thousands of options available what actually makes a difference? Well we started exploring this very question just over a year ago.
First off there is the bottle itself, which nowadays is either made from natural rubber or PVC (Polyvinyl chloride, a type of plastic). The main benefits of rubber are that it is a natural material and provides more insulation. The benefits of PVC are that it provides an option for those with an allergy to rubber and it is also phthalate free. Be wary of bottles that have low rubber content and that are manufactured a long time ago, you can see the age of the bottle on the daisy of the bottle.
We chose rubber bottles for their natural qualities and opted to have them double ribbed, to offer more insulation.
Next comes the covers, which are made from 3 parts, the lining, the wadding and then the main cover material.
The lining material is the closest to the bottle and so needs to be light weight and strong. We tested a handful of different materials from recycled polyester to bamboo viscose but opted for organic brushed cotton for its strength and texture.
The wadding is the stuffing that does most of the insulating, to keep the bottle has hot as possible. One thing we learned was some materials are great at insulating but make a nasty scratchy noise when moved. We tested quite a few different materials and ended up choosing a 50/50 natural bamboo & natural cotton blend.
Finally comes the outside cover, which also helps to insulate the bottle but also has to look and feel right. We tested over 50 materials for this and chose 5, making sure that the materials were sustainable, nice too look at and also felt great.
So, to summarise a great hot water bottle consists of a quality and recently made rubber or PVC bottle and a cover that is made from lining, wading and a cover material that are all high-quality, insulating and nice feeling and looking.
We wanted to go one step further and make all of our bottles also out of sustainable materials. Check them out here.
Thanks for reading,