Winter is coming! And that’s why it’s time to get a great hot water bottle to keep you warm and cosy all season long. Hot water bottles are a useful home remedy tool which are great for everything from soothing achy muscles to keeping you toasty in bed at night. You can even get one to help keep your pets warm... But which is the best hot water bottle to suit your needs?
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Hot water bottles are a stay-cosy must-have during the winter – and also make great Christmas gifts
Mini Hot Water Bottle, £20, The White Company
What is a hot water bottle?
Hot water bottles, which have been around since the 1500s, are containers filled with hot water and closed with a stopper that you can then use to warm yourself up with, whether tucking it under your blanket, cuddling up to it on the sofa or in bed, or even wearing it when you go out for some extra warmth. Hot water bottles are the original heat therapy,– they help improve circulation, and can also be used for targeted heat to soothe pain from menstrual cramps to muscle aches and tension.
Water bottles can come covered with soft knits, fleece, faux fur or even velvet
Green Velvet Bee Hot Water Bottle, £24, Oliver Bonas
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While rubber hot water bottles were all the rage starting in the 19th century, modern life means we’ve upped our game and you can now get hot water bottles with cosy knit or faux fur covers, and you no longer need to necessarily fill the bottles with water these days! If convenience is key, you will want to opt for a quick heating microwave hot water bottle, or a plug-in electric style, both of which will usually stay warm for at least four hours.
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Microwave, traditional or electric hot water bottle – which is best?
The best hot water bottle for you really depends on what your needs and priorities are, whether it is simplicity, convenience or even stylishness.
Traditional rubber or PVC hot water bottles are the classic old school home remedy and can also be used with cold water for cold therapy or during the summer. Filled with hot (not boiling) water, they don’t require electricity in either the form of a microwave or an electrical outlet, which is a plus if energy efficiency is a priority for you.
A microwave hot water bottle heats up quickly thanks to an interior thermal pack. Generally you just pop it into the microwave for a couple of minutes, which means it is a nearly instant fix if you need warmth immediately.
With an electric hot water bottle you literally just plug it in! Which means that if you're in your bedroom or living room and need some warmth, there's no need to head to the kitchen to fill up a traditional water bottle or pop it into the microwave.
Microwave and electric hot water bottles don't have stoppers so that eliminates the risk of water leaks or spills.
When it comes to style, electric and microwave hot water bottles can be found in a host of looks, whether knit, fleece or faux fur. But don’t worry if you prefer a traditional rubber water bottle - you can buy covers for your hot water bottle separately and switch it up according to your mood.
Now that you know the difference between traditional, microwave and electric hot water bottles, here are our picks of the best, whatever your needs.
Best traditional hot water bottle
This traditional hot water bottle, which has earned a five-star rating on Amazon, isn't made of rubber but from recyclable thermoplastic material and it comes with two covers so you'll have an extra when one is in the wash. It will stay warm up to 8 hours and Amazon reviewers are raving about the great quality for price. "The covering is not only adorable - it is very well made. The bottle, itself, is also well made. Great bang for your buck!" said one fan.
Aukiita Traditional Hot Water Bottle with 2 Covers, £12.99, Amazon
Best microwave hot water bottle
Hotties is known for their water-filled microwavable hot water bottles – differentiating them from heating pads filled with wheat or other substance. This microwavable hot water bottle heats up in the microwave a few minutes, then stays cosy for hours. This tartan hot water bottle is quilted, but the brand also makes hot water bottles in other fabrics like faux fur and fleece.
Hotties Microwave Hot Water Bottle in Quilted Royal Stewart Tartan, £15.99, Amazon
Best electric hot water bottle
It may not be the most stylish hot water bottle in the world, but eBay’s top-selling electric water bottle is very easy to use – plug it in and charge it up for 15 minutes for four to six hours of warmth.
Bauer Rechargeable Electric Hot Water Bottle, £12.25, eBay
Best large hot water bottle
With a high rating on Amazon, the Country Club hot water bottle is a favourite – and we love the faux fur and pom pom design. The two-litre bottle will definitely help keep you warm on chilly nights, and if pink isn't your colour there are a host of other shades to choose from.
Country Club large hot water bottle with faux fur cover, £8.72, Amazon
Best small hot water bottle
Small hot water bottles can be tucked into your bag or suitcase, so are great for travel and their small size also makes them an excellent option for children. This .8 litre bottle in a cute penguin shape has a five-star rating on Amazon.
Fashy Hot Water Bottle, £12.42, Amazon
Best long hot water bottle
This long hot water bottle that has earned a 4.6-star rating on Amazon has a wearable strap so you can tie it around your waist or shoulders, and it provides 4-6 hours of heat. It’s also fashionable – it’s available in leopard print, shown, as well as plain grey, zebra and polka dot
The Body Bottle in leopard print, £24.99, Amazon
Best hot water bottle for kids
Marks & Spencer has a whole range of small traditional hot water bottles for kids that come in plush toy covers, like this fluffy lion that can also serve as a pyjama holder.
Lion Hot Water Bottle, £12.99, Marks & Spencer
Best hot water bottle for pets
Hot water bottle brand Hotties also makes a microwavable hot water bottle for your pet! Non-toxic and chew/claw-resistant, the Hotties from Petlife warmer can be used for dogs, cats and smaller animals, and is suitable for use anywhere from crates to pet beds.
Hotties Microwavable Pet Warmer, £25.48, eBay
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