It’s 9 AM and you are off to hit the trails with your buddies.
You’ve all planned on an awesome day full of bouldering, scenic overlooks, and most importantly, a complete disconnection from the rest of the world.
As the day wanes, a midday bump from your favorite flask fresh from your favorite daypack will not only keep the great stories among friends rolling, but will also make for even a more relaxing time.
The hip flask has been a popular item since the 18th century for its convenient alcohol storage and has continued to be an excellent gift idea (:cough: fathers day :cough:) ever since, due to its originality and function.
However, for some of us who might be wondering exactly what makes a hip flask so fantastic, let’s dive into some of the details.
What is the Difference Between a Regular Flask and a Hip Flask?
The main difference between the two is the size and shape of the flasks. The hip flask is traditionally a kidney-bean shaped metal bottle that is small enough to fit inside a boot or coat jacket.
It was designed, specifically, to fit the bend of the leg or thigh for comfort (source), and has something called a “captured top” that is attached to the body with a small metal arm. This kind of top ensures that the lid won’t get lost when opening the bottle.
Regular flasks on the other hand, are the smallest form of commercially sold alcohol bottles and are either drunk from directly, or come with small cups if there is a desire to share with friends. This makes the regular flask less appealing for situations where concealment is necessary.
Lacking the uniform shape of the body that the hip flask possesses, regular flasks are much more difficult to sneak into a pocket.
Using the hip flask will aid you where these flasks cannot by saving money at any venue, such as concerts or sporting events, so that you can avoid paying expensive in-house prices.
However, if you plan on using your hip flask often, you will want to follow the proper washing instructions in order to avoid any build up or unwanted odors that may otherwise grow inside the flask.
How to Correctly Clean Your Flask
The number one best way to insure a hip flask remains clean, is to limit the amount of time that you store liquor within it. Three days is the recommended amount of storage time allowed before a required cleaning.
After three days the alcohol can begin to acquire a very metallic taste, which will of course want to be avoided. If you do like to keep a bit of alcohol left over after a day of drinking, the best flask to look into would be a glass flask. This is because the glass doesn’t transfer any taste into the liquid that is stored inside.
When it does come time for your steel flask to be emptied and cleaned, the biggest flaw of this item will reveal itself.
While the thin and portable design of the hip flask is perfect for carrying around with little effort, the size makes it quite difficult to clean. Such a tiny opening at the top makes it impossible to insert a rag or brush for proper scrubbing, but luckily, there are other methods that can be used to get the task done.
Cleaning Your Hip Flask With White Vinegar
Non-toxic and highly acidic this method works wonders on cleaning out the stainless steel flask. Pour a small amount into the top and shake until you feel the flask should be clean, perhaps 30-60 seconds.
Dump out the vinegar and replace with a similar amount of water to rinse out any remaining vinegar within the flask. After rinsing, place the flask upside down on a dish towel and leave it with plenty of time to dry. Make sure that before capping the bottle there is no water left inside, as leftover moisture can be unsafe.
Do not use any other vinegar besides White Vinegar. This is because varying vinegars can leave an unwanted flavor behind that will interfere with the taste of the liquor.
Water Can Be An Effective Solution
When you can’t find distilled White Vinegar, water is an excellent choice for cleaning out your flask. Avoid using soap because it can leave leftover residue inside the container. To begin cleaning the flask, boil two cups of water and carefully pour it into the top. Once the water is inside, close the cap and shake for 30-60 seconds.
After shaking, simply dump the water out and place the container upside down on a rag and allow to dry. Do not store a flask if there is still moisture inside.
As lemon is very acidic, this is the perfect alternative to using vinegar. You can either use it at full strength, or dilute it a little bit with some water. Pour your mixture into the flask and shake until you feel that it is clean. Rinse well with water to avoid any left-over lemon taste and turn the flask upside down to air dry.
Keeping your flask clean and dry will ensure a longer life-span for it and prevent any unwanted build-up inside the container; that way you can keep filling it up with liquor for many days to come.
What Type of Alcohol Can You Put in a Flask?
Something to consider when choosing an alcohol to put inside your flask, is that certain kinds of alcohol fair better when they remain in a flask over an extended period of time.
Alcohol in its purest form, such as rum, vodka, certain liqueurs, and scotch are a few examples of the kinds of alcohol that you will want to put in your hip flask. Avoid drinks such as very acidic beverages and cream liqueurs, both of which will deteriorate not only themselves, but the flask as well. Never put beer or wine in your flask.
Keep in mind that temperature is also a major factor in affecting the taste of the alcohol, because if it gets too hot, the alcohol will begin to taste like the container it’s in. So instead of always carrying the hip flask right next to your body, it may be a better idea to keep it in a jacket pocket instead.
So, after considering all this, you can now decide which drink you’d like to conveniently have on hand. Here are a few suggestions:
A favorite of gentleman and pirates alike, this drink will not only keep well in your flask, but also comes in so many varying flavors! From smooth and nutty to a dark chocolate full of spices, you can be sure you won’t want to miss out on having your flask full of aged rum. This option is non-damaging to the flask and holds its flavor well.
You’ll never get bored choosing from the majority of flavors this drink choice has to offer. Better yet, this liquor will not damage your flask and will keep it’s taste perfectly for up to three days when stored. Do yourself a favor and fill your hip flask up with some classic whisky at your next event.
Single Malt Scotch
Durable and musky, this beverage perfect for sipping will keep you on your toes with a smoky, sweet twist. Top off your flask with this Scotch and you won’t regret it.
After educating ourselves on the best kinds of liquor to fill our flasks, let’s dive into the multitude of brands that offer their very best designs.
12 Best Hip Flasks To Take On Your Next Adventure
SE HQ90 Stainless Steel 8-Oz. Hip Flask & Funnel Set
This 8 oz. flask is the perfect example of a classic. Accompanied by a small funnel to aid in pouring your favorite liquor into the container, this stainless steel flask is a great deal at an affordable price. Measuring at 3-5/8″ x 5-3/8″ x 1″ with a weight of 2.4 ounces, SE makes carrying their flask around in your pocket a breeze!
With a screw top lid and featured in the color chrome, everything is tied together with an impressive brushed finished that will have you coming back for more every time. Keep your flask in working order by washing carefully often, and allow to dry completely before storing.
Soft Touch Leather Wrap Outdoor Adventure Flask 304 Stainless Steel
Created by the brand, Future Hydrate, this flask takes a unique spin with its faux leather wrapping. Just a little bit of the chrome color stands out against the top and bottom of the container, matching the funnel that is included with your purchase.
Made from a high quality, food grade 18/8 304 stainless steel, this 8 oz. flask is affordable, durable and leak-free; perfect for taking out on all of your roughest outdoor adventures. Hand wash with vinegar or water thoroughly to ensure the inside of your flask remains rust and corrosion free.
However, if you find this flask just isn’t for you, the company offers a full money back guarantee with no hassle or questions asked.
Top Shelf Flasks Stainless Steel Hip Flask Assorted Colors, 8oz
If you feel that the classic chrome look of a hip flask doesn’t fit your fancy, then this affordable 8 oz. container by Top Shelf Flasks will be exactly what you’re looking for. Available in nine bright colors and easily engraved, the only thing you will be missing is a funnel, as one is not included with your purchase of a flask. The colors in stock are:
- Baby Blue
- Burnt Orange
In order to keep your customized flask in top working order, make sure to remove any left-over alcohol after 3 days and clean completely with water or vinegar. Do not use soap and allow the flask to air dry completely before storing.
Pocket Hip Flask 8 Oz with Funnel – 18/8 Stainless Steel with Black Leather Cover
This versatile flask is perfect for slipping into a suit pocket for a black tie event, or dressing down for a casual camping trip. Wrapped in soft black leather, you will always have an excellent grip on your flask rain or shine. Made from high quality stainless steel and 100% leak proof, you can be sure that no rust or corrosion will be ruining your 8 oz. pocket friend any time soon.
While a bit more expensive than your everyday flask, the quality of the leather and free funnel make this purchase worthwhile. Thoroughly wash the inside of your flask after each use to ensure a long lifetime for your product. Air dry completely before storing in order to avoid buildup within the flask.
Royal Selangor Pewter Hip Flask Designed by Erik Magnussen, 160ml
Forget your everyday stainless steel and bring out the big boys.
This flask by Royal Selangor is made from pewter with 92-97% tin, the highest of international standards for this metal. Ringing in at $150.00, you may think, whoa! that’s way too much for a flask, but before you rule it out, let’s consider everything that makes it so unique.
Each individual 160 ml flask is hand crafted and meticulously scrutinized before being sent out. Instead of the traditional bar and arm attachment for the lid, this flask features a classy screw on top that creates a very smooth body.
Engraving is available for this piece. In order to keep your pewter flask in tip-top condition, wipe down the outside occasionally with a wet cloth and do not scrub in order to avoid scratches. Never expose the pewter to direct flame.
Colonel Conk Model 1007 Rimless Flask with Honeycomb Pattern, 6 oz.
With this next flask make sure you don’t let any bees snatch it from you!
With such a unique pattern as this honeycomb engraving, you’ll have dozens of complements coming your way. This 6 oz. flask weighs 4.8 ounces, perfect for easy transportation, and made of stainless steel; suitable for any engraving of your choice in the box on the front.
At just $20, you will have a fun and interesting way to contain your favorite liquors. As always, be sure to thoroughly clean out your flask and allow to air dry completely before storing.
Snow Peak Titanium Flask
Hold onto your hats because this Titanium flask is about to blow you away. Made of high quality grade A Titanium, this flask is lightweight and stronger than steel.
You may think that a strong metal such as this would be heavy and a real pain to carry around; but that’s where you’re mistaken! The Snow Peak Titanium Flask weighs only 2.3 oz. and can hold up to 5 shots of liquor; meaning that this container is dressed to impress.
Available in two different sizes, the Medium having a 5 oz. capacity while the Large has a 6 oz. capacity, you won’t regret purchasing this flask.
Finally, this flask comes with a gift of a suede carrying case and a plastic funnel for easy pouring; you’ll never have to spill a drop! Follow proper cleaning etiquette to ensure a long life for your titanium flask.
Gennissy 8 Oz Pocket Hip Flask
This flask is out to steal the show with its leather wrap cover and convenient lid. Within the stainless steel lid, you will find three small shot glasses, perfect for sharing and completely hidden for an excellent on-the-go style.
While the cap is not attached to the body of the flask with a classic arm bar, it does have a secure sealing screw on top that insures no leaking will occur. When ordering this flask as a gift, you can be sure it will arrive in style. Packaged in a golden box complete with a free stainless steel funnel, and guaranteed to thrill whoever receives it.
At a sub $20 price tag, this one of a kind flask is exactly what you’ve been looking for! Clean completely and dry thoroughly before storing your Gennissy hip flask.
I’m sure you’ve heard of Zippo as the maker of great quality lighters.
But, did you know they also make amazing flasks?
Well now you do!
The Zippo flask is a high quality stainless steel flask that holds up to 3 oz. of your favorite liquor. While this container is smaller than the typical 8 oz. flask, it’s curved shape and compact size makes it the perfect hide away item!
With a depressed Zippo logo stamped into the front, your alcohol will be traveling in style inside of this little hip flask. There is no free funnel included with the purchase of a Zippo flask. When cleaning out your container, be sure to allow the inside to dry completely before storing in order to avoid unwanted buildup.
Gold Plated Flask
The search for gold at the end of a rainbow has finally ended with this flask by Urban Outfitters.
This sleek, 6 oz. flask is plated in 14-karat gold and features a screw on lid with a liquid-tight seal. Perfect for weddings, parties, and dates you will be sure to seriously impress the ladies with this simple yet sophisticated hip flask. To avoid scratching off any of the gold plating, hand wash your flask and air dry completely.
Tartan Hip Flask
This flask by Barbour enters an all new ball game with its unique tartan checks and leather trim.
With a 6 oz. capacity and a compact height of 4 ¼”, you can easily slip this flask into any pocket and head out your door in style.
The tartan texture creates a solid grip, ensuring that you will not drop your flask when pulling it out and the arm-bar connection for the lid makes for care-free drinking. As with any flask, careful cleaning is key for a rust-free drinking experience. This stainless steel tartan hip flask from Nordstrom is a real deal.
Wild and Wolf x Ted Baker London Voyager’s Brogue Hip Flask
Ted Baker London really takes a trip to the stars with this amazing flask. A stainless steel mixed with polyurethane is dressed in a fantastic black faux-leather sleeve and ready to hit the town.
You’ll never need to worry about dropping your flask or ruining the shining stainless steel with fingerprints thanks to the leather sleeve!
This flask holds up to 6 oz. of your favorite liquor and is available in the dimensions of 3 3/4″ x 5″ x 3/4″, ensuring that you will have an easy time storing it in any pocket while you’re out and about. For proper care and maintenance, be sure to hand wash only and air dry completely before storing your flask.