Move over, plain tap water—there are new calorie-free, sugar-free, thirst-quenching options in town! These new flavored water products aren’t like sodas or sports drinks because instead of sugar and preservatives, you’ll find increased levels of vitamins, minerals, and natural ingredients in these drinks. Each kind has something unique to offer, but all are cooler versions of good ole’ H2O that will keep you hydrated and healthy. If you’re looking for a replacement for high-cal beverages like soda, look no further.
Flavors: Coconut Pineapple, Lemon Lime, Kiwi Strawberry, Orange Mango, Pomegranate Blueberry, Pink Grapefruit, Black Raspberry, Crisp Apple, Peach Nectarine, Classic Lemonade, Strawberry Lemonade, Raspberry Lemonade, and Lemonade with Tea
Add-ins: Vitamins, antioxidants, and natural fruit juices
Where to find it: Stores near you
What it is: Sparkling ICE is naturally flavored, sparkling mountain spring water. Sparkling ICE also makes four different zero-calorie sparkling lemonades. Despite the lack of sugar in these drinks, these varieties taste as flavorful as big-name soda brands without the junk.
What collegiettes think: “I particularly enjoy the Kiwi Strawberry, Raspberry Lemonade, and Apple [varieties]. The lemonade actually tastes like lemonade, and the [Crisp Apple] tastes like sparkling apple juice. For no calories, the drinks offer a punch of flavor with none of the guilt!” – Jaclyn, University of Maryland ‘16
Flavors: Body, Brain, pH+, Power, and Energy
Add-ins: Oxygen, magnesium, and electrolytes
Where to find it: Stop & Shop, Whole Foods, Amazon, Shaw’s, QuickChek, ShopRite, and more stores near you
What it is: Wat-Aah’s mission is to make water fun and more appealing than soda. Conducive with their goal to beat childhood obesity, there is absolutely no sugar in any of the varieties. The increased levels of magnesium in the water can help your body produce more energy, strengthen your teeth and bones, and get rid of toxins. Electrolytes are minerals, like calcium, potassium, and sodium that your body needs to function. Electrolytes are depleted through exercise, so Wat-Aah is a great drink to sip on at the gym or after your workout. Although it is targeted towards kids, Wat-Aah is a good choice for people of all ages.
What collegiettes think: “I drink Wat-Aah now! I saw the picture in my grocery store one day and thought it was funny so I bought it. It’s good and I like the bright colors that are on the bottles.” -Mariah M, Virginia State University ‘16
Flavors: Goodberrymint, cherrymint, orangemint, lemonmint, chocolatemint, peppermint, and spearmint
Add-ins: Natural mint
Where to find it: Whole Foods, Safeway, and Amazon
What it is: Metromint is spring water enhanced with 100% natural mint, so all of the flavors are unsweetened. This water is meant to add more refreshment to the normal H2O experience. Natural mint has many health benefits, including soothing stomachaches and relieving pain. Is chocolate your guilty pleasure? If so, chocolatemint water might be right up your alley! Even with the chocolate and fruit combinations, the mint taste is very strong, so if you love mint, this brand will be perfect for you!
Flavors: Lemongrass mint vanilla, lavender mint, lemon verbena geranium, cloves cardamom cinnamon, cinnamon orange peel, and ginger lemon peel
Add-ins: Organic herbal extracts
Where to find it: Whole Foods and more stores near you
What it is: Ayala’s Herbal Water uses organic herbal extracts to enhance their water. Like wine and beer, flavors of herbal water complement different foods, and Ayala’s provides recipes for each flavor. There is also a line of lightly carbonated options that come in the most popular flavors, including lemongrass mint vanilla and lavender mint.
What collegiettes think: “Its wide-mouth packaging makes the drinking experience more pleasurable and refreshing. The subtle fruit flavors are delicious but aren’t strong, so don’t expect the juice taste to be extreme!” –Sandy, Ithaca College ‘15
Add-ins: Fulvic trace minerals, electrolytes, and pH+
Where to find it: Whole Foods, ShopRite, Big Y, Amazon, and more stores near you
What it is: blk is, as its name suggests, black-colored water. blk is infused with fulvic minerals, which boast health benefits like increased energy and toxin removal. The fulvic minerals are what give blk its black coloring. Drinking water that is jet-black may sound like a strange experience, but don’t knock it ‘til you try it!
What collegiettes think: “blk water tastes a bit ‘earthier,’ but I wouldn’t say there’s a dramatic difference from regular water. I drink blk water because it has natural electrolytes instead of drinks that are loaded with chemicals.” –Emma, Curry College ‘16
Flavors: Cucumber, raspberry-lime, blackberry, watermelon, honeydew-hibiscus, pomegranate-tangerine, mango-grapefruit, strawberry-kiwi, lime, and pear
Add-ins: Fruit and herb extract
Where to find it: Amazon, Whole Foods, Starbucks, Stop & Shop, and more stores near you
What it is: Hint is pure water accented with natural extracts from fruits and herbs. The only flavors and ingredients used in this water are those in the title of each kind, so what you see is what you taste! This water doesn’t have the strong taste of regular juice, but rather, subtle hints of fruit. Hint water also has a line of seltzer called Hint Fizz, which comes in four flavors: strawberry-kiwi, blackberry, watermelon, and peach.
What collegiettes think: “I really like Hint Water but I know a lot of people who don’t. It’s definitely something to get used to because there’s absolutely nothing sweet about it. It’s literally just the fruit essence, which I think turns a lot of people off, especially with the flat water instead of the fizzy version. My favorite flavors are mango grapefruit, lime, and raspberry-lime. For people trying it out, I would steer clear of flavors like watermelon and pear, because they’re fruits with nothing sour or tangy about them, so they have much less flavor.” –Gabbie, UNC-Chapel Hill ‘16
Each of these companies developed their product with one mission in mind: to create a delicious and nutritious alternative to soda and other unhealthy drinks. Kicking the habit of drinking soda can be hard, but it’s a worthwhile change to make for your health—and once you get used to it, your taste buds will agree, we promise!