The first product from Nice Reusables, a new company devoted to the idea that sustainability should be simple, the Alex Bottle is an easy-to-clean water bottle. Alex stands for "Always Live Extraordinarily"—a statement that may seem extreme out of context, but makes perfect sense when you learn that enterprising Oakley former team manager Chris Hotell and his wife, champion pro snowboarder Gretchen Bleiler, founded the company.
In this case, the extraordinary feat comes in the form of a new way to get gunk out of your drinking bottle. Most of us clean narrow-necked BPA-free bottles with a combination of despair and ingenuity, involving multi-step processes that include everything from simply scrubbing mold off caps to shaking a combo of lentils and dish soap or buying specialized cleaning solutions. No matter how hard you try, a well-used water bottle—filled regularly with coffee and smoothies and tossed in gym bags or the backseat of cars—can develop a funky aroma and thriving bacterial growth.
Alex's solution makes cleaning the bottle a breeze. The cap and lower half of the bottle detach and are dishwasher-friendly. Simply unscrew the bottle apart and stack it next to plates and silverware. The modular design also makes it easier to swap out tops and halves for when you want a smaller or larger bottle with mix-and-match colors. When it's empty, the bottle can pack inside itself for saving space in your bag or purse. All that cleverness earned Alex recognition as one of the finalistsin the 2011 Housewares Design Awards for Tabletop & Beverageware.
Next year should see further developments in the Alex design, with a sports top and a sippy cup attachment for kids. The Alex retails for $26 and sells online from the Alex Bottle shop.