Change is inevitable. Especially when it comes to babies. Just when you think you’ve got it down, baby is in a ‘somewhat’ predictable routine and mama is getting some well-deserved sleep when … it all changes.

Another milestone. Another period of adjustment. And … more decisions to be made by a bleary-eyed mama that remembers a time, not so long ago, when she wasn’t sleep-deprived (sigh!)

When it’s time to say, ‘bye-bye bottle’ (or breastfeeding for that matter!) it’s a big move for baby and a bold move for mama and papa. Of course, each experience will b.unique, and only you can best determine how to navigate the transition from bottle to cup for your baby.

In the meantime, here are some first-time sip tips from a mama that’s been there, that might help to make the process a little easier.

bye-bye bottle!

The right time to start the transition from bottle to cup will vary, but generally somewhere between 6 and 12 months is usually recommended by those that know babies best.

It goes without saying that every baby is different, so it’s important to follow your baby’s lead. There are usually signs – you might notice baby gets more easily distracted while feeding or starts ogling your cup as you sip your morning coffee! When you feel the time is right – just go with it.

Some kiddos will welcome the change, while others that take huge comfort in their bottle, may take longer to make the adjustment.

Every experience is unique and often involves some trial and error – just be prepared. Especially when it comes to the night bottle. Many folks and littlies get used to this one as the ‘last cuddles, settle and (with any luck) drift off for the night’ feed and sadly, that is likely to change.

But a wise health nurse once told me: that babies and toddlers can learn to self-soothe without a bottle, it just takes time and patience – oh mama, hang in there! It’s going to be worth it.

 

first time sip tips – the transition from bottle to cup

child making the transition from bottle to cup with b.box sippy cup

to wean or not to wean?

In short, there are two ways to approach the transition: cold turkey or slow wean. Fairly self-explanatory, cold turkey is the quicker approach and particularly useful if baby is really attached to the bottle, whereas weaning involves decreasing the number of bottle feeds over a period of time and replacing them with food or milk from a cup.

Whilst the latter sounds like the ‘gentler’ option, it just depends on how you choose to approach it, and of course: how your baby responds. As always, research it and talk it over with your trusted crew – a health nurse, pediatrician, or other mamas-in-the-know.

Then, believe in your own ‘mama instinct’ for an approach that suits you and your little one.

Either way, when there’s kiddos and change involved - you need to make the transition away from the bottle as fun, interactive and rewarding as you can!

Think fun cups in playful shapes and bright colors, bath-time playtime using cups to sip, splash and pour, and of course: lots of praise and reward cuddles and kisses.

When it comes to cups for little kids, there are many options to choose from. One way to approach it is to offer a variety of cups to practice drinking and simply see which one works best. There may be different bottles or cups that are useful at different stages and for different occasions.

Your choice will also be age dependent – with handles for younger ones or without for older. If you have decided on a slow wean from a younger age, then a spout cup might be a good option as a first transition cup away from the bottle.

 

child making the transition from bottle to cup with b.box spout cup

spout or sippy?

Is baby ready to move on from the bottle? The spout cup is the perfect starting base.

A soft-spout tip is not a far stretch from a bottle and still quite gentle on baby's lips and sensitive little gums. Wide handles are helpful so that littles can learn to grasp and lift to sip when they have limited dexterity.

When baby starts on solids, a spout cup is the ideal addition to mealtimes. It can be used to introduce cooled, boiled water or to offer a supplement of breast milk or formula. Out-and-about? Look for a cup with a spout cover to keep the mouthpiece clean and hygienic, while ensuring no leaks in your diaper bag or backpack.  

The cup features an ergonomically angled silicone spout that’s ultra-gentle on baby’s gum and comfortable to drink from. Easy-grip handles fits baby’s hand perfectly for easy drinking. The cup also features an in-built spout cover which not only keeps the mouthpiece clean, but it also means you’ll never lose the lid (think no more lost lids in the supermarket, or random loose lids in the drawer!) Its interchangeable base and lid also means you can switch between the spout, sippy cup and training lids as baby grows.

 

here's the details of our spout cup

  • - 4m+
  • - Ergonomically angled silicone spout
  • - Hygienic in-built spout cover
  • - Easy-grip handles
  • - No leaks, easy drinking
  • - Interchangeable lid – base also fits sippy cup and training lid for every age and stage
  • - BPA, Phthalates and PVC free
  • - Dishwasher safe
  • - Made from PP, TPE and silicone
  • - 240mls/8oz capacity

 

As baby grows and develops, or if you are starting the transition a little later, going straight to a sippy cup might be effective. This option encourages drinking, but supports different actions to develop greater skills, and offers the added benefit of being spill or leak-proof to avoid major mess in those early days of learning.

No doubt a good option when you are on-the-go, out visiting or at a restaurant when you are trying to keep things clean and dry for a moment! A weighted-straw sippy cup moves with the liquid, so baby can drink lying, sitting, or standing whichever way it’s tilted which is handy with super active littles that simply can’t sit still! You can usually serve with warm (some brands) or cool options, and it might act as a replacement for the ritual morning and night milk bottle when baby is ready.

 child making the transition from bottle to cup with b.box sippy cup

here's the details of our sippy cup

  • - 6m+
  • - Weighted straw moves with the liquid, whatever angle the cup is held
  • - Simple flip top lid
  • - Base also fits training cup lid and spout cup lid
  • - Dishwasher safe
  • - Sippy cup base is microwave safe. Do not microwave sippy cup lid and straw
  • - Made from PP and silicone, steel weighted ball
  • - Dimensions (cup with lid) 15 x 12 x 7.5cm
  • - 240mls/8oz capacity
  • - BPA, Phthalates and PVC free

Whichever cup or bottle you choose, the key is to model the action first – slowly gripping, lifting, placing the spout or straw or cup to your lips, tilting and drinking – with exaggerated gulps and lots of ‘mmm yummy refreshing water’ to encourage baby to give it a try too (nothing like a bit of fomo!).

Either way, the key is to show and assist at first then let babies play and explore because like all new skills, drinking from a cup needs to be learned. It’s about to get messy! Don’t forget to snap these precious moments.

So, the best cup? Is without a doubt the spill-proof one! Ok, maybe not – but that is a great bonus to look out for! Other things to keep in mind: Is the cup made from materials safe for littles and free of nasties like products BPA, Phthalates and PVC? What you can serve in the cup (will it hold cool and warm liquids) and can it be cleaned in a dishwasher, and for the littles a sterilizer – for added convenience? And can parts like the spout or straw be replaced over time, or if teething baby gets a bit chew-happy!  

 

child making the transition from bottle to cup with b.box training cup

trade up to a cup!

Some folks might prefer to skip spouts and sippy’s altogether, and others might choose to work up to a big-kid cup. And again, there are many options to suit many preferences.

Any suitably sized, soft-rimmed open cup will do the job! Other bits like handles, weighted bottoms and more are optional extras!

A training cup is a good interim option - it mimics an open cup but funnels liquids into a rim so baby can learn to tilt and sip, but without the spills.

It’s genius!

It’s another little stepping-stone to a regular, open cup for water, milk, you name it.

The training cup is the ideal way for kids to learn to drink from a cup. The training cup mimics the flow of a big kid’s cup, by funneling liquids into the rim for easy free-flow drinking. The cup also features a unique water window in the lid so kids can learn to see water as they’re drinking and judge how much to tilt their cup.

here's the details of our training cup

  • - 12m+
  • - Lid funnels liquids into rim for easy free flowing drinking
  • - Window in lid allows kids see and judge water level
  • - Easy free flow drinking
  • - Dishwasher safe
  • - 240mls/8oz capacity
  • - BPA, Phthalates and PVC free
  • - Base also fits spout lid, sippy cup and training lid for every age and stage

 

Ultimately, the best cup is the one your child will drink from happily and with ease, so it might take a few different types before your find the one that is just right. Otherwise, you can look out for transition packs that offer several suitable options in one, with interchangeable lids so you can switch between the spout, sippy cup and training lids as baby grows.

 

The transition pack includes 4 cups in 1, taking babies from bottle feeding to toddler training in one great value pack. Base fits each lid. Simply change lids as baby grows, catering to every age and stage from 4 months to 12 months plus.

 child making the transition from bottle to cup with b.box transition pack

the transition set includes

 

  • - nipple 4m+ a fast flow (Stage 3) silicone nipple with handles and cover
  • - spout lid 4m+ soft silicone spout that’s gently on baby gums
  • - sippy straw cup 6m+ our award-winning weighted straw sippy cup
  • - training lid 12m+ teaches kids how to drink from a cup, offering easy free flow drinking with a unique window lid.

 

here's the details of our training cup

  • - 4 lids in 1 cup, taking babies from bottle feeding to toddler training in one value pack
  • - Base fits each lid. Simply change lids as baby grows, catering to every age and stage
  • - Dishwasher safe
  • - 240mls/8oz capacity base
  • - BPA, Phthalates and PVC free

 

Are you ready to say bye-bye bottle? Like all transitions, making the move from bottle to cup might be a little tough. But keep that cup ‘half-full’ mama - you and your little one will get there!

And soon enough, clever babies will have conquered yet another life skill. Oh, how they grow so fast. And … you’ll be proud as punch!

Just a note to say, this content should be considered as one mama’s humble opinion only. Parents should always seek advice from your own doctor, health nurse, or other health professional that relates specifically to your children and your circumstances.

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