What kind of bottle or cup is best to use?
Every baby is different and they will soon let you know what they do and don’t like. However, there are some general principles that can help when choosing bottles and cups as they grow.
For milk, a baby bottle with a breast-like nipple is best. This helps your baby form a natural latch and makes transition from breast to bottle smoother if you're breastfeeding.
Once they are old enough to introduce water and other liquids, usually at around 6 months, consider a cup with handles (usually removable) and either a soft spout or straw. You'll probably want a non-spill valve, as learning to drink is pretty messy. By using a cup with a removable valve, your baby can practice free flow drinking, i.e. they don't have to suck. This uses different muscles and can be good for their oral development.
Once they are around 12 months old, then this is a good age to move on from nippled bottles to just cups. Your little one may already know if they prefer a spout or straw, or you could try a sports top so they feel a little more grown up! Before long they may also be happy drinking from an open cup - it really is about finding a way of drinking that suits you both.
A non-spill valve is still a practical help, and you may want to consider cups that are dishwasher safe, as your little one will be out and about a lot more now.