We Tested the Best Plastic Drinking Glasses for Enjoying a Beverage Al Fresco

Our winner is the Cocktail Kingdom Yarai Acrylic Tumbler Set

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Plastic glasses are no longer just red Solo cups and other single-use chalices. Thanks to incredible innovations in the glassware field, the plastic glasses of today are heavy-duty, reusable, and designed with style in mind. They're made to withstand everyday use, combining crystal-like quality with dishwasher-safe durability.

Tested & Approved

Our tester chose the Cocktail Kingdom Yarai Acrylic Tumbler Set as our winner because it has the durability of plastic, but has the appearance of crystal-cut glass, making it a versatile choice for daily use and special occasions. If you're after a glass that can withstand wine o'clock on the patio, we recommend the Govino Go Anywhere Flexible Shatterproof Wine Glasses.

To help you choose the best plastic drinking glasses, we tested them side-by-side and evaluated each on its design, size, durability, and overall value. Many beverages—including water, cocktails, and more—were sipped in various environments indoors and outdoors, and the plastic drinking glasses were even gently tossed off coffee tables and onto the floor in order to make sure they are truly the best.

Whether you’re klutzy, have little hands around, or are looking for shatterproof options for outdoor affairs, we've got you covered with the best plastic drinking glasses, according to our tests.

Best Overall: Cocktail Kingdom Yarai Acrylic Tumbler Set

4.8
Cocktail Kingdom Yarai Acrylic Tumbler Set
Courtesy of Amazon.
What We Like
  • Incredibly durable

  • Stackable

What We Don't Like
  • Seams around glass

Cocktail Kingdom's acrylic line is "quite deceiving," says Dean Hurst, beverage director at Datz Restaurant Group in Tampa. Why? They have the bright look of glass and feel great in the hand with just the right amount of weight, making them a safe and durable choice for a pool deck or active home bar. Our home tester is an old-fashioned lover, and she appreciated that this glass was not only large enough to fit a round ice cube, but it was also durable enough to come with her to a sauna or pool. Whiskey lovers, take note: These stackable 10-ounce glasses are wide enough to hold a large ice ball or cube. They come in a case of 12 or 24.

Especially ideal for the glassware snob, the design takes the cut crystal patterns of Japanese Yarai mixing glasses and translates them into acrylic that withstands drops and spills. You can pop these in the dishwasher after use, but hand washing will increase the lifespan. If you want the feel of real glass with the durability of plastic, opt for this set. While our tester has found many plastic glasses crack when you stack them, these are incredibly durable—you’re unlikely to snap one. Since it does come in larger sets, our tester suggested buying a full set to keep on hand for parties. They're sturdy enough for such situations, and they still have the appearance of a high-end cocktail glass.

Material: Acrylic | Capacity: 10 ounces | Dishwasher Safe: Yes

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The Spruce Eats / Kate Dingwall

Testing Takeaway

"This is a great glass to have on hand in your home. Break them out for backyard drinks and never worry about sweeping up broken glass again. When you're done, stack them and keep them in your cupboard—they take up a minimal footprint."

Best for Whiskey: Host Whiskey Freeze Cooling 9-Ounce Acrylic Glass

4.4
Host Whiskey Freeze Cooling 9-Ounce Acrylic Glass
Courtesy of Amazon.
What We Like
  • Excellent alternative to whiskey rocks

  • Band protects your hand from the chill

What We Don't Like
  • Need to keep upside down while freezing

  • Will cause condensation—use a coaster

If you like ice-cold drinks, these glasses are crafted to keep your beverage freezer-level chilled sans the dilution of an ice cube. Simply store them in your freezer and when you’re thirsty, take them out, pour your drink of choice, and sip away. Our tester appreciated that the chilled glass prevents dilution, making this a smart alternative to large cubes. It also means you don’t need to opt for a whiskey stone, so rocks aren’t clunking around in your glass.

How do they stay cold? The double-walled construction features a proprietary cooling gel, which keeps drinks between 43 and 53 degrees. A cozy silicone band protects your hand from the cold and your drink from the warmth of your hand. While they're designed specifically for whiskey, these glasses will keep a rainbow of beverages cold, from lemonade to Moscow mules, and each one holds 9 ounces of liquid. The glass does sweat a lot, though, so if you're sipping this inside, be sure to use a coaster or it will start slipping and sliding around.

Material: Silicone | Capacity: 9 ounces | Dishwasher Safe: No

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The Spruce Eats / Kate Dingwall

Testing Takeaway

"This is a lovely glass for sipping whiskey from whether that's in warmer weather or when you want to avoid dilution caused by ice cubes."

Best for Wine: Govino Shatterproof Outdoor Wine Glasses

4.3
GoVino Shatterproof Outdoor Wine Glasses
Courtesy of Amazon.
What We Like
  • Sturdy

  • Recyclable

  • Thin like crystal

What We Don't Like
  • Small capacity

  • Not enough room to aerate

There’s a lot to love about these plastic wine glasses. They have the appeal of real crystal with a brilliant reflective finish. Made from lightweight, bendable material, these glasses are completely shatterproof. They look great, are environmentally friendly, and are completely serviceable for even the biggest wine nerds. 

The design is particularly clever—a contoured shape and small dent in the side of each glass lets your thumb sit comfortably, making it easier to hold, a feature our tester loved. They can be reused again and again, and are completely recyclable should you one day decide you’re done with them. Other options include a Champagne flute, beer glass, cocktail glass, or whiskey glass, all of which are shatterproof. There’s even a matching decanter for serving.

Material: Polymer | Capacity: 12 ounces | Dishwasher Safe: Yes

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The Spruce Eats / Kate Dingwall

Testing Takeaway

"I've used Govino's shatterproof wine glasses for years. When I'm sitting on my rooftop, hanging out in a park, or hosting friends who are going to drink a few glasses of wine (read: breakage!), they're great glasses to have on hand. I appreciate that the small finger dent allows the glass to rest in your hands."

Best Unbreakable: Lawei 6-Pack Unbreakable Plastic Drinking Glasses

4.3
Lawei 6-Pack Unbreakable Plastic Drinking Glasses
Courtesy of Amazon.
What We Like
  • Very durable

  • Useful for identifying your glass

What We Don't Like
  • Hand wash only

  • Thick lip

For durable, regular use, these multi-hued glasses add a little bit of color to your daily dining. The set of six glasses comes in a rainbow of colors, including pink, violet, orange, and clear, with a crystal effect that gives them an effervescent appeal. The interior has slight dabbling to ensure they won’t stick together when stacking and storing. They have a nice weight to them, too.

Break them out for poolside hangs, picnics, camping trips, and more. Since these glasses won’t break or chip when they fall, kids can use them worry-free. Seriously. Our tester said, "You could throw these glasses as far as you could and they still wouldn't shatter."

Be cautious when cleaning, though. While they are great for every occasion, they will crack in the heat of a dishwasher, so they should be hand washed carefully. Beyond that, the brand declares these virtually unbreakable, so if you’re prone to breaking glasses, they're a solid solution. Each one holds 12 ounces and stands about 3.5 inches high.

Our tester thought it was a bit odd that these glasses have a textured pattern on the inside, but not on the outside. If the pattern was on the outside, you would be able to better grip the product. That said, these are fairly standard plastic glasses. The lip is quite thick, but if you're not swirling whiskey, it's nothing to write home about.

Material: Plastic | Capacity: 14 ounces | Dishwasher Safe: No

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The Spruce Eats / Kate Dingwall

Testing Takeaway

"These are highly durable glasses for occasions where that's needed. I like that I can hand these out at a party. The bold colors means no one will mix up their drinks."

Best Clear: Le'raze Classic 16-Piece Premium Quality Acrylic Tumblers

4.8
Le'raze Classic 16-Piece Premium Quality Acrylic Tumblers
Courtesy of Amazon.
What We Like
  • Easy to clean

  • Brilliant clarity

What We Don't Like
  • Hand washing is best

Looking to stock up your outdoor home bar? This set of 16 high-quality acrylic glasses will do just that. Included are a total of 16 glasses (eight 12-ounce rocks glasses and eight 16-ounce highball glasses) made with unbreakable, BPA-free acrylic. Even though they aren’t glass, the cups have an elegant look for upscale drinking.

Our tester was impressed with the clarity, as the plastic has the brilliance of high-end glass. While many plastic glasses tend to get foggy and lose their shine quickly after purchasing, these remained beautiful and crystal-clear wash after wash. You'd definitely think these were glass if you weren't holding them. Break them out for any occasion, and once you're done, you can place them in the dishwasher to use all over again. Just note that our tester noticed a bit of wear and tear (minor scratching and such) after a couple spins through the dishwasher, so to keep these looking their best, we recommend hand washing.

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The Spruce Eats / Kate Dingwall

Testing Takeaway

"Toting drinks to a pool or beach? These glasses offer the brilliant clarity of high-end glassware sans the breakage potential. Both rocks and Collins glasses have generous capacities to fit all sorts of drinks from sangrias to bloody marys and beyond."

Final Verdict

Skip single-use disposable cups and opt for the sturdy and attractive Cocktail Kingdom Yarai Acrylic Tumbler Set. For a proper set of nearly indestructible wine glasses, we recommend the Govino Go Anywhere Flexible Shatterproof Wine Glasses.

How We Tested

We sent plastic drinking glass sets to our drinks expert and home tester, who tested each with an array of beverages, including old-fashioneds, margaritas, and more, in both indoor and outdoor environments, and even gently tossed each plastic drinking glass off of a coffee table and onto the floor to see if they were strong enough to withstand bumps and falls. Our tester then rated each on its design, size, durability, and overall value, and offered additional insights on each plastic drinking glass' strengths and weaknesses.

Other Options We Tested

  • Host Freeze Stemless Margarita Glass: These 12-ounce cocktail glasses are designed with frozen drinks in mind—except our tester found that, realistically, they only hold about 6 ounces each, which isn't enough to fit a full drink with ice. After the recommended two hours in the freezer to pre-chill the glasses, only some parts of the glass had frozen because there wasn't enough cooling gel, and the rubber that's supposed to protect your hand from the cold fell in an awkward position at the bottom of the glass instead of the middle.
  • Sugar & Cloth Ombre Plastic Pitcher and Tumbler Set: This set of mint, peach, blue, and rose ombre glasses with a matching pitcher is beautiful. There's no denying you would get an Instagram-worthy picture with them, but the colors chipped shortly after the set was unboxed and with continued use. However, our tester was a big fan of the spacious pitcher (56 ounces) and will be using it for years to come.
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The Spruce Eats / Kate Dingwall

What to Look for in Plastic Drinking Glasses

Size

What you're planning on serving in plastic glasses will make a difference as to the size or shape you decide to purchase. Most plastic glasses are 8 ounces to 24 ounces in size. But what about the width of the glasses? That's important too, especially for little hands or adults whose hands don't work quite like they used to. All of these factors will help you make the right decision as to the proper size glasses you need.

Design

From 16-ounce glasses to Champagne flutes, there are so many designs available. Whether you're serving wine or Champagne, or iced tea or lemonade, there are plastic glasses fit for every occasion. Coming in all different colors and printed-on designs, and sometimes even shatterproof, they're perfect for special celebrations, barbecues, poolside, birthday parties, or holidays.

Ease of Cleaning

A lot of plastic—and acrylic—glasses can be used over and over again, so you want them to be easy to clean, too. Some of them can be placed in the top rack of the dishwasher, making for a quick cleanup, so if this feature is important to you, check to make sure they're dishwasher safe. 

FAQs

Are plastic glasses recyclable?

While most plastic glasses are recyclable, make sure the recycling symbol is printed on the bottom before discarding them in the recycle bin. 

Are all plastic glasses BPA-free?

Not all plastic glasses are BPA-free, so if this is a concerning and determining factor in the purchase of these types of glasses, read the information on the box they are packaged in, before buying. You might find a notation on the bottom of the glasses, too. 

How long do plastic glasses last?

There are a few factors to consider in how long these types of glasses can last. Plastic glasses can last a few years depending on whether they are taken care of properly, how often they get used, and what they are made of.

Why Trust The Spruce Eats?

Kate Dingwall is a freelance writer and sommelier, who has spent years researching all things wining and dining. She’s a huge glassware nerd and collects antique coupes, highballs, and Champagne flutes from a range of eras. She personally tested each plastic drinking glass on this roundup.

Updated by
Sharon Lockley
Sharon Lockley
Sharon Lockley has over 20 years of experience as an editor and writer and has been contributing to The Spruce Eats since 2019.
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