|Image from The Mulled Mind|
Etsy discovery #5,044: stainless steel straws. Can you imagine? There is a person who makes stainless steel straws by hand from home. This is the joy of Etsy.
There is just one Etsy store that makes stainless steel straws, and it is The Mulled Mind. The Mulled Mind is owned by Heather Melling of Massachusetts, a mechanical engineer who is using her skills to help you kick your disposable plastic straw habit.
|Heather Melling, hard at work making your steel drinking straws. |
Image from The Mulled Mind.
We've been making smoothies almost daily at my house lately. I use a regular cup with disposable plastic straw (which I reuse a few times before tossing, and, by the way, I have no idea what kind of plastic disposable plastic straws are made from). My 4 and 2-year-olds use plastic lidded cups with straws to drink the smoothies, but the reusable plastic straws were not working for us. Of course, I'm not thrilled with my kids sucking and slurping on plastic to begin with. But what I really hate is that my kids bite their plastic straws into tiny slits, and then the raspberry seeds or something else jam up the straw and they can't drink their smoothies. And then it's, Mommy, Mommy, Mommy, until I bite their straw back into shape. And then they bite their straws into tiny slits again, and their straws get jammed, repeat ad nauseum.
The first time we used The Mulled Mind's steel straws a few weeks ago, I immediately noticed both kids biting on them. The look on my 2-year-old's face when she bit that hunk of steel was priceless. And the unsolicited endorsement from my 4-year-old: I like this straw, Mommy! We've been using them for all our smoothies ever since.
10 Things to Love About The Mulled Mind's
Stainless Steel Straws
- My children cannot bite them out of shape.
- Highly affordable. For example, $11.50 ($8 plus $3.50 for U.S. shipping) for a set of 4 regular drinking straws. Plus, all straws come with a lifetime guarantee.
- They are not plastic. No worries about leaching chemicals.
- They are reusable! No plastic or paper waste. Use your straw to become an activist!
- They are dishwasher safe.
- They won't break. I've discussed the glass straw vs. stainless steel straw dilemma with others. It's true with glass that it's easier to see if your straw is clean, and it's also probably true that it would require significant effort for you or your children to break a glass straw. But I've broken plenty of glass in my life (at the end of my illustrious stint in the organic chemistry lab, I owed the lab room upwards of $100 from broken lab equipment), and I feel more comfortable with stainless steel straws for both me and my kids. Also, if you plan to keep one or more reusable straws in your purse for eating out, you won't need a special case for steel straws.
- They come in various diameters and lengths. The short straws are perfect for my kids lidded plastic cups. I also got an extra long one that works with my tall stainless steel malt cup, which I make my smoothie in using an immersion blender. By the way, I found that the regular diameter straw worked just fine with our smoothies. The Mulled Mind also does special orders, so if you don't see the exact straw you want for sale in the shop, just ask!
- Comes with a cloth drawstring bag and pipe cleaner for cleaning them. And, thus, for the first time in my life, I realize why that crafty item sold in Michael's is called a "pipe cleaner." I put my straws through the dishwasher without rinsing first (this will not cut it with a smoothie), and they came out with some gunk inside, so I got to try out the pipe cleaner and it totally worked. For reasons unclear to me (maybe because the interior surface remains smoother?), the steel straws rinse out clean much more easily than plastic straws. To check if your straw is clean, just look through it towards a window or light. The very cute cloth drawstring bag is very handy for carrying the straws in your purse, or provides the wrapping for your eco-friendly gift.
- Made in the USA by an Etsy shop. I love to support handmade goods and the skilled artisans who make them.
- You can win your very own set of 2 short and 2 tall stainless steel straws courtesy of The Mulled Mind (see details below).
Image from The Mulled Mind
Win The Mulled Mind's Stainless Steel Straw Multi Pack (2 Regular, 2 Short) by leaving a comment below about how often you use disposable plastic straws, or why you would like to win these steel straws. Include your email in your comment, unless I can figure it out from your commenting persona (Blogger profile/ blog/ etc.).
Extra entries (leave an additional comment for each extra entry):
- Spread the word by email, Facebook, Twitter, carrier pigeon, etc. (you can use the buttons at base of the post).
- Make The Mulled Mind an Etsy favorite (you need an Etsy account to do this).
- Extra entry for Eco-novice subscribers (or Followers, Facebook fans or folks with Eco-novice as their homepage or regular readers by some other method). Tell me how you subscribe/ follow/ read Eco-novice in your comment.