Things To Look For When Buying A Flask

What To Consider When Buying A Flask

The things you look for when buying a flask will obviously depend on what kind of flask you are looking for. This guide covers both thermal flasks (for coffee, tea, soups and cold drinks), and vintage style flasks (which covers hip flasks and other flasks that are mainly used for alcohol). As these two flask categories are pretty different to each other we are going to cover them in two sections so that things don’t get confusing. If you are solely looking for a vintage flask then feel free to skip to the next section, but you never know when you might want/need to buy a vintage flask!

Things To Look For When Buying A Thermal Flask

Best Thermos Vacuum Flask - Reviews Of 2015 - 2016Thermal Flasks are a great choice if you want to bring your own hot drinks or hot foods with you when you leave the house. Thermal flasks can prove very handy and cost-effective if you use them to take your own coffee/hot drinks into work with you so you don’t end up spending twice as much on expensive coffee shops, and you can also use them to take hot food such as soup and cold drinks out and about with you so that you get a taste of home no matter where you go!

There are quite a few different types of thermal flask which have been designed for different purposes. Before you buy a flask you need to ask yourself what exactly you are likely to use it for. Are you going to buy a flask for work or for hiking trips? Do you want to use it for food or hot drinks? Would you like to use it for cold drinks?


There is a huge range of thermos flasks to choose from and they can range from the very cheap to the surprisingly expensive. You may assume that the more a flask costs the higher quality it must be, but this is not always the case and some cheaper flasks may well function as well or better than a higher-range flask. It’s important to check customer reviews to get a good idea of how well the flask in question actually works in real life.

Food Flasks

If you are buying a flask primarily for soup and other liquid-based foods then there are a few things you will want to look out for.


The capacity is very important because it will determine how much you can fit into the flask. Flask sizes can range from around 300ml for smaller meals to around 700ml for larger quantities. The size and capacity of the flask that you choose will depend on how much food you want to bring with you, whether you are using the flask for hiking or long-distance journeys where you may want to carry more than one meal with you, and whether you are planning on sharing with anyone else.


You may also want to look for food flasks which come with a lid that can also be used as a serving bowl so you can eat whenever and wherever you want, and you can also find flasks that come with a foldable spoon.


Thermal flasks can be made out of various materials and some of those materials are a lot better than others. Plastic is a cheap material which will definitely cut the cost of your flask, but it is not thermos-stainless-steel-curved-food-flaskrecommended because it doesn’t retain heat well, it is fragile and it is likely to break. Metal flasks (most commonly stainless steel) are more highly recommended because they are durable, easy to clean and better at retaining heat. It’s a good idea to check the reviews of a few different flasks to make sure that they are up to scratch as you can’t tell how good a flask is going to be just by looking at it and reading it’s product description.

Heat Retention

The heat retention is another important factor. The amount of time that a flask can keep your food hot or cold varies from around 4-5 hours to as long as 12-15 hours. If you are planning on using your flask for more than one meal as you embark on a long journey or hike then you will want a flask which keeps your food warm for longer, whereas if you are just using the flask for your lunch it will only have to keep it warm for so many hours.

If you want to use your flask for cold foods as well as warm food then you will also need to check how long the flask can keep your food cold.  The flask will normally be able to keep food cool longer than it can keep it hot, but some flasks may not be tailored for cold food at all.


The warranty is another important factor to consider. Some thermal flasks offer longer warranties which may cover you for a decade or even longer whilst others will not offer a warranty at all. If you are planning on spending quite a lot of money on your flask you will want to make sure you are covered in the event of any problems.

Hot Drink Thermal Flasks

This type of flask is essential for coffee fiends everywhere. These flasks are a great choice if you want to take your morning coffee to work with you, if you want to save on chain store coffee without having to resort to the instant office brew, or if you are planning a long trip or hike and you want to keep warm and alert throughout the day.

The amount of time the flask can keep your drink warm is very important. Some thermal flasks can keep your drink warm for up to 24 hours, whereas others will only last for around 6 hours or less. If you are going on a journey and you want steaming hot coffee all day then you will want the flask to keep your drink warm for as long as possible, but if you only need to keep your drink warm for a few hours then this won’t be as important. Remember to check customer reviews as sometimes the product will boast that it can keep the drinks warmer for longer than they actually can in reality.

The Lid

Your thermal flask’s lid needs to be secure and effective. It should not easily come off, it should not leak, and it should be easy to clean.  The lid should loosen and tighten easily and it should fit the flask flawlessly. Some thermoses come with corks to keep them closed, but these are often not that effective as these thermoses end to leak. Screw caps are a better option because they are more likely to keep in place, but it is still important to check reviews if you are buying online to ensure that the cap does accurately fit the flask.

Many of these lids can also double as a cup which really comes in handy if you are outdoors and you don’t want to carry an extra cup around with you. The thermos cup should be made out of the same material as the flask and it should be able to retain heat in much the same way. This will allow you to enjoy your drink at the temperature you want without it cooling down too quickly.


Thermos Soup Flask Reviews - Best Of 2015 - 2016The material that your flask is made out of can have a huge effect on the flasks durability and how long it lasts. Stainless steel is a common and popular option as it is a durable, resistant and easy to clean material which can retain heat pretty well. Plastic and glass thermal flasks should be avoided as much as possible because they are more likely to break, they are not great at retaining heat and they may rust fairly easily.

You will also want to check how well insulated your thermos is. If the flask is double layered then it will stop the heat from escaping your drink, and if it is vacuum sealed then it will retain the heat even more efficiently. It may be better to get a vacuum sealed thermos which is made out of the inferior material than a stainless steel thermos which is not well insulated as the former is likely to keep your drink warmer for longer.

Other Features

When you are looking for a flask you may want to check and see if the flask has carry handles to make it easier to move around (which can be very handy if the flask is hot) and free carry bags which can help prevent any leaks messing up the contents of your bag. You may also want to choose a flask which comes with a money back guarantee or warranty. If you are buying your flask online it is pretty hard to tell how well the flask is going to hold up even if you read all of the customer reviews. The warranty is there to protect you because, if you are unable to test the flask beforehand, you can send it back for a refund/exchange if it does not function as advertised.

Things To Look For When Buying A Vintage Flask

The term ‘vintage flask’ will be used here to describe any ‘old fashioned’ style flasks like hip flasks, pewter flasks, silver flasks and so on.  These types of flasks may seem like an outdated product which you’d only really find in the cinemas, but the novelty of these items is still really strong and they are actually a pretty popular gift option! Vintage flasks look awesome, they have a timeless appeal which will especially appeal to anyone who loves Victorian and/or Steampunk fashion and culture, and they offer you a cool and classy way to drink your booze in the open at any time of the day or night! What more could you want?

There are a lot of different types of vintage flask out there on the market. Some are beautiful, some are creative and some are genuine historical artefacts, but others may be rip offs, they may be poorly made and some are even toxic to drink out of! It’s important that you know what to look for when buying a vintage flask so you get the most out of your money. Read on to find out more.


The material that your flask is made out of is a really important consideration. Here are some of the materials that you are likely to come across.

Stainless Steel

Stainless steel flasks have become popular in recent times and most modern flasks are likely to be made out of this material. It is a good choice because stainless steel is easy to clean, it is rust-free and durable, and the shiny silver appearance of stainless steel can be used to create some truly gorgeous flasks. The only problem is that stainless steel is a relatively new material and so if you are looking for a genuinely historical vintage flask then you may be disappointed.


Silver used to be a very popular flask material because it didn’t react with the liquor and some people believed it made the alcohol taste even better. It isn’t as easy to find a silver flask today, but there are still specialist companies and vintage sellers who may have one in store. These flasks tend to be pretty expensive.


Pewter has been a popular choice as a material for flasks for some time. It originally became popular because it is a very attractive material which was cheaper than silver. Pewter ages well, it is durable and it can be used to create some truly magnificent flasks, but vintage pewter flasks were often made with lead and they are therefore toxic to drink out of. If you are looking for a pewter flask then you should either opt for a modern one (which will not contain lead) or if you do choose an authentic vintage model you should refrain from drinking out of it and just use it as an ornament.


Leather encased vintage flasks add a sense of style and protection which can enhance a fairly basic stainless steel flask and make it look extra special. These flasks are made out of stainless steel, but they will either have leather as part of the outward design or the flask will be encased in leather. The leather is mostly there for aesthetic appeal.


Whilst it is going to be hard to find a flask which is entirely made out of gold you should be able to find a gold plated hip flask fairly easily. These flasks are good for a decadent look, but they may not look as classy as some of the other options.

Other Designs

Some flasks will have various engraved images which can enhance the appearance of your flask. There will be many designs which you can choose from, so make sure you look at a few different flasks before buying one.

You can also buy some beautifully painted flasks for a more bohemian look. These flasks will feature bright colours, beautiful artwork and will suit anyone who has a taste for hippy and alternative looks. You can also get touristy flasks, sports flasks, flasks which are decorated with jokey images, and official RAF hip flasks.


When you imagine the shape of a flask you will probably be thinking of a hip flask which will have square corners, a curved body and has been designed to fit against your hip. This is a very popular flask shape, but it is not the only option.

Pocket Flask

The pocket flask is specially designed to fit discretely into someone’s pocket. They are fairly similar to hip flasks, but the body is flatter and they tend to have more rounded corners. These pocket flasks are around the same size and they may have a capacity of around 4-6 ounces.

Top Pocket Flask

These flasks are thinner and smaller than hip or pocket flasks and they are designed to fit into the top jacket pocket of your coat. They will normally have a capacity of around 3 ounces.

Round Flask

These flasks have a rounded shape instead of a square or rectangular shape. They may feature different designs including perfume bottle-style looks.

Novelty Shapes

You will also come across flasks which are sold in a variety of novelty shapes. These are normally sold as ornaments or accessories and may not be suitable for practical use, so check to see if you can actually drink out of your novelty flask if that is what you want to use it for.

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