25 Popular Bottled Water Brands, Ranked Worst To Best

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Although it's certainly not eco-friendly by any stretch of the imagination, the demand for bottled water continues to proliferate, mostly due to the convenience factor. In fact, according to Statista, bottled water accounted for roughly 24% of beverage consumption in the United States in 2020. Some also believe that it's safer than drinking tap water. However, not all bottled waters are created on equal grounds, and usually the first qualifier is taste. 

According to the EPA, certain bottled water may contain traces of contaminants (like magnesium and calcium) that certainly alter the taste, but don't necessarily pose a glaring health risk. The "source" of the water can also make a significant impact. For example, does your bottled water come from a "groundwater" source, such as a well or spring, where it's less vulnerable to contamination? Or perhaps it comes from a surface source like a river or stream, usually indicating additional treatment such as disinfection. You can also determine the cleanest drinking water by pH levels. Healthline discerns that a "safe" pH range is 6.5 to 8.5 — anything less could mean heavy-metal pollution.

Either way, all bottled water sold here in the United States must meet certain FDA regulations. Usually by just reading the label, you can deduce where it falls on the quality pendulum. But no need to fret, because we're ranking 15 popular bottled water brands, worst to best.

25. Nestlé Pure Life

There's a certain type of nostalgia that comes with a household brand name like Nestlé. But Nestlé Pure Life bottled water doesn't come from reputable sources by any means. In fact, it comes directly from water used by local municipalities. Essentially due to its lack of treatment, you're better off drinking straight-up tap water. Out of all of the bottled waters out there, this one is the most lackluster and slightly hazardous. 

In 2018, a study examined 259 bottled waters and 93% of them contained micro plastic synthetic polymer particles, according to Frontiers in Chemistry. Nestlé Pure Life garnered the most unfavorable results — with one sample that contained almost 10,000 microplastic particles per liter. Yikes! Even though there's a 12-step quality assurance process in place, consumers don't share praising sentiments in regards to taste, which certainly validates the contamination results. One verified Amazon buyer mentioned that the water they purchased yielded a detectable metallic taste and overall it just wasn't very good.

24. Poland Spring

Advertised as "100% natural spring water from the heart of Maine" since 1845, Poland Spring, owned by Nestlé, claims to meet and exceed spring water requirements set by the FDA and EPA, using third-party testing experts and various benchmark testing. But according to Vox, a class-action lawsuit was filed against Nestlé Waters, questioning the true source of Poland Spring water and arguing that it's just ordinary groundwater collected from wells drilled by the company. The suit called the water "a colossal fraud perpetrated against American consumers."

In a statement to Vox, Nestlé claimed that the lawsuit was "meritless," and said they would continue to defend their product relentlessly.

Now when it comes to taste, there are nearly 10,000 global ratings of Poland Spring on Amazon, with an excellent 4.9 (out of 5) rating overall. However, several reviews mentioned a chemical smell and taste to the water. As far as we're concerned, Poland Springs will remain at the bottom of our roundup.

23. Dasani

If you're still curious what bottled tap water from a monstrous corporation — i.e., Coca Cola — tastes like, then look no further than Dasani. Like many popular bottled water options, the idea of drinking tap water is diffused by another rigorous filtration process, Hydro-7. Essentially, it's a reverse osmosis treatment that removes certain substances like salt and chloride. However, it doesn't prove to be 100% effective, as Dasani had to remove its product from the U.K. due to too much bromate, a harmful chemical compound that heightens the risk of cancer, according to Business Insider. There are even YouTubers, including Shane Dawson, poking fun at Dasani. Dawson notes that there's a fizz sound when unscrewing the cap of a bottle of Dasani water, an audible attribute that should only come from carbonation. 

"Have you ever been so dehydrated that you'd puddle rainwater in your hands if the sky would show you mercy? If you're looking for this experience, keep looking — because Dasani isn't it. I'm not sure what they did to this stuff, but it's what I imagine a 'prank' bottle of water would taste like," wrote Amazon reviewer Andrew Bell.

 If you're raising a cautionary brow, so are we, which is why Dasani ranks particularly low on our list.

22. Aquafina

PepsiCo is the major conglomerate behind Aquafina, which is why this bottled water practically lines the shelves in every major supermarket. Right off the bat, Aquafina underscores its rigorous purification system, meeting and exceeding the EPA standards. But according to a report published on Mr. Water Geek, PepsiCo admitted that Aquafina is nothing more than tap water, which is why they heavily emphasize the intense filtration process. The Aquafina label lists PWS, which stands for Public Water Source, forcing the widely-recognized brand to remain accountable and transparent to its customers (via ABC News).

As far as taste, one tiny sip of Aquafina conjures a noticeable chemical taste with mild notes of plastic bits. So if you're faced with an impending predicament forcing you to choose between tap water or Aquafina, we advise you to opt for the tap. The quality is virtually the same, it's 10 times more environmentally friendly, and simply makes more sense from a monetary standpoint.

21. Deer Park

Sourced across the great Eastern Seaboard and beyond, Deer Park, a Nestlé brand, claims to pride itself on being 100% natural spring water, emitting a crisp and clean taste. Moreover, they follow a 10-step quality control process that supposedly reflects in the 2020 Water Analysis Report. However, in 2020, Consumer Reports tested 47 bottled waters for heavy metals and toxic PFAS chemicals, a group of man-made chemicals used in consumer products because they don't break down and are resistant to grease, heat, oil, etc., according to Today

In their testing, Consumer Reports found that Deer Park was one of two waters that exceeded a 1 part per trillion level for PFAS. Shortly after, a Deer Park rep told Consumer Reports that additional testing was initiated and these levels are undetectable now.

When it comes to pH levels, Deer Park upholds a broad range of 6.6 to 8.2. Apparently, it varies per bottle since their H20 is sourced across four states. The BPA-free bottles also fall into the MadeBetter pledge, a commitment to using bottles that are 100% recycled plastic and 100% recyclable when empty. Overall, Deer Park continues to produce decent spring water that imposes minimal harm on the environment.

20. Arrowhead

The Arrowhead brand is a household name under the BluTriton umbrella, which offers a sense of reliability. Touted as 100% mountain spring water sourced from various locations in California, Colorado, and British Columbia, every bottle comes from a carefully selected, original spring source, in line with the most stringent FDA spring water standards. When it comes to green merit, Arrowhead lives by a "MadeBetter" badge, promising to manage its springs by implementing environmentally-friendly practices and leveraging experienced hydrogeologists and field experts. 

On paper, this seems encouraging. However, a Desert Sun inspection in 2015, reported by the Los Angeles Times, uncovered that the company was filtering water from the San Bernardino National Forest with an expired permit from 1988. If this made you cringe, you're not alone. Although there's a plethora of raving Arrowhead reviews, you'll most likely find a handful of ratings that reflect opposing sentiments.

"Water should taste like water. There's so many weird chemical flavors that it's not even refreshing when it should be. It doesn't matter what temperature it is: hot, cold, or room temp, it never satisfies," said Foodie Expert Level 1 reviewer Audrey L., via Influenster.

19. Ice Mountain

To the surprise of no one by now, Ice Mountain is another water brand that falls under the Nestlé empire. Right away, it's marketed as 100% natural spring water that comes straight from the depths of the Midwest, specifically three natural springs in the heart of Michigan. Occasionally, Ice Mountain extracts water from other springs when demand is high, but this should always be reflected on the label.

For the most part, Ice Mountain is as neutral as you can get, meaning it doesn't really yield a prominent, discerning flavor. If anything, it's a tad "minerally." On Amazon, it garners 81% approval and a 4.7 rating, although many customers say it can be difficult to find at local grocery stores. It's simply a dependable, "middle of the road" spring water. 

"This is a good, clean, crisp tasting water, but it's not always available and when it is, you can only buy a maximum order of four bottles at a time. I wish it were always in stock and that I could buy eight at a time, because it's really good and the shipping saves me a lot of hassle. I really recommend it," wrote one Amazon buyer.

18. Ozarka

Like Arrowhead, Ozarka is a domestic spring water brand bottled under the BluTriton product label and established in 1905. Today, it's positioned as always fresh, thirst-quenching water served throughout the state of Texas and into the Southeastern states. Fueled by nature, Ozarka claims to never add any unnecessary fillers, and through an elaborate 11-step quality process, promises that every bottle lives up to specific high-caliber criteria. When it comes to taste, many favor this Texan water spring water due to its intrinsicly crisp and refreshing profile, which comes without the lingering, nasty chemical flavors. One verified Walmart purchaser named Anna boldly referenced it as "The Nectar of Gods."

"This water tastes like a cool inviting limestone cave that hasn't seen human or animal contact in the entirety of its existence. It's not acidic like many brands tend to be, but beware: Once you try you won't like any other water brand ever again," said the reviewer.

Ozarka also promises to employ true "Lone Star" enthusiasts who share a real passion for preserving the state's natural beauty and sustainable H20 practices. 

17. phURE Alkaline Water

Taking a usual stroll through Walmart? Well, you might bump into phURE Alkaline Water, specifically made to hydrate and impart the alleged benefits of alkaline water through a balanced pH of 9.5. Including added electrolytes, alkaline water like phURE can purportedly calm digestive issues and acid reflux, along with aiding metabolism, per sales information. The sales page also mentions that phURE is infused with extra antioxidants that could ease the strain on joints and muscles, helping you to uplevel your workouts. With lofty product claims, you might be wondering if it's too good to be true. Many reviewers have noted radical changes, such as Google reviewer Shelley:

"I never understood the benefits of drinking alkaline water until trying this product. Everyone in my household loves it and drinks it regularly. Now, my grandma is even drinking it to help with her acid reflux — so many benefits and the water is crisp and clean. Sorry Poland Springs, I think I will stick with PhURE from now on."

Even with the rave recommendations, many sources, such as Healthline and the Mayo Clinic, caution that most nutrition claims about alkaline water lack researched evidence.

16. Core Hydration

If you're seeking a highly specialized, nutrient-dense bottle of water that promises to enhance your daily activity and lifestyle, then Core Hydration, developed by Dr. Luke, is what you need. In fact, its edgy appeal has captured the attention of celebrities and brand investors such as Adam Levine and Becky G.

Not only is Core Hydration ultra-pure from reverse-osmosis, but this water is injected with electrolytes and specific minerals that lead to thorough hydration. Its balanced pH of 7.4 works in orchestration with your body and most definitely suits those who lead an especially active lifestyle, specifically athletes.

Core Hydration is truly a "balanced" water brand that also aims to promote sustainability, only using 100%-recycled, BPA-free plastic bottles. Even though it skews a tad pricier than other options, Core Hydration has amassed a cult following, reflective in more than 22,000 Amazon reviews and a 4.8 out of 5, 90% rating. Many customers point out its chemical-free, crisp taste that's unanimously refreshing.

15. Bai

You might be familiar with Bai for their ultra-cool antioxidant infusion drinks, such as Costa Rica Clementine and Brasilia Blueberry, but did you know that the Bai magic doesn't end there? Bai has a special Antioxidant Water, bottled and infused with electrolytes and served with a pH of 7.5 or up. It's formulated to keep you well hydrated throughout the day and to float you through the varying fluctuations of your regular routine while the power of antioxidants fights off free radicals. These declarations are pretty bold, so it should be noted that science still suggests naturally occurring compounds in fresh produce are the best way to get powerful antioxidants (via Pharmacognosy Review). 

Based on the site reviews, it might be challenging to spot Bai Antioxidant Water in stores. But, if you can get your hands on it, it's worth the purchase and even somewhat habit-forming.

"Taste is great and the quality is there. Great, refreshing, and flavorful. When you open the cap and start sipping the whole bottle without notice, like eating popcorn at the movie theater, I NEED A REFILL," said reviewer Prixilla

14. Hint

If you're levitating in the "I need to drink more water" universe and need a slight nudge, allow Hint to come to your rescue. In every Hint bottled water, you'll detect a subtle yet approachable whisper of all-natural fruit without unattractive sugar, sweeteners, or calories. It's also categorized as low-mineral, yielding the best taste possible. Another plus: Hint is classified as vegan, kosher, gluten-free, and non-GMO. If things couldn't get better, there's a wide variety to choose from with 16 total flavors, ranging from Crisp Apple and Clementine to Blood Orange. If you're yearning for a little fizz, a sparkling option is available and also infused with fresh fruit flavors.

"I'm a big pop drinker, and I find water boring. I just cannot get myself to keep drinking it unless it's hot outside. I like having flavor, and I've become obsessed with Hint. It's not an overpowering flavor which is what I was looking for. It's simple and refreshing," said verified Amazon reviewer Bgparks.

13. Glaceau SmartWater

We're not positive Coca-Cola's Glaceau SmartWater will increase your IQ, but it certainly will better your life in various other ways. SNL star, Pete Davidson also agrees that he's making smarter hydration choices now, thanks to this acclaimed liquid. In all seriousness, SmartWater is deemed as one of the best water bottle brands out there, enabling you to achieve ultimate hydration through a special vapor-distillation process that eradicates impurities. Essentially, this sort of system emulates the hydrologic cycle that makes water as pure as a drop of rain. 

Ionized minerals such as potassium, calcium, and magnesium are added to create a potent punch of electrolytes that ensures you're optimally hydrated. We're also quite certain that this isn't the most budget-friendly water that's readily available, and that's simply due to the added electrolytes that gives SmartWater a distinguishable, crisp taste. SmartWater has also become a fashion-forward health accessory due to its chic bottle shape and slightly sophisticated ​panache.

12. Just Water

On the day he was learning to surf for the first time, 10-year-old Jaden Smith noticed a lone plastic bottle floating next to him in the ocean. He knew that he had to take action, so he developed the inspiration to start a sustainable water company. Enter Just Water — 100% mountain-sourced spring water piped from the Adirondack Mountains in New York. Instead of ordinary plastic, Just Water is wrapped in bold, sky blue, plant-based packaging. Technically you're not drinking from a bottle but from a much more eco-friendly carton, tracing a 74% reduction in carbon emissions by utilizing plants for every micro and macro piece of packing. 

What goes into these sustainable bottles? According to information on the company's website, the cartons are a mixture of things. 54% of the bottle is made from paper materials, which Just Water says helps cut down the product's carbon footprint significantly. The paper is wrapped around a thin layer of aluminum and topped with a cap made from sugarcane. All of this is done to protect not only the Earth but the taste of your water as well. However, let's say plain water isn't your thing. If you're seeking something with flavor, you can choose from lemon, mint, blackberry, or cherry-infused water. There's even a bubbly option! Just Water fans just can't seem to get enough.

11. LifeWtr

As the name alludes, LifeWtr revitalizes water drinkers through a keen sense of creativity and eclectic design. The brand releases a new "series" of artist-designed bottles at regular intervals across the United States, Canada, and the United Arab Emirates, where it is sold. Highlighting three artists per series, the project provides a type of community and national spotlight that can't be replicated. Aside from amplifying creativity, LifeWtr is close to balanced with a pH range of 6.4 to 7.4 and is purified through reverse osmosis. It's also injected with an infusion of electrolytes to yield an exceptionally "clean and crisp" taste. Despite being owned and operated by multinational PepsiCo (per Forbes), this boutique water brand nurtures progressive art and manages to consistently wow consumers without leaning too far into the mainstream.

"Have reordered multiple times for myself and my sons and daughters-in-law. Also for some friends and grandchildren. Artwork is beautiful, bottles fit nicely in car cup holders, and the water is different than any I have ever drunk. Glad I made the plunge," said one verified Amazon customer.

10. Essentia

Ever wonder what it's like to drink supercharged ionized alkaline water? Essentia claims to fit the bill, creating bottled water with an exceptionally high pH of 9.5, basically zero traces of acidity. The body itself is delicately smooth and extraordinarily clean. In fact, Essentia is 99.9% pure premium water, touting a balanced blend of minerals and electrolytes. This is employed through reverse osmosis and microfiltration, without any fluoride or chlorine.

Although Essentia's whole ethos revolves around purity, there are questions circulating around its superior hydration motto, as expressed in a class action lawsuit against the brand. The plaintiff in the case wants Essentia to support its claims of "superior hydration" compared to other bottled waters, to justify its higher price.

While there are questions regarding the brand's assertions, Essentia customers refer to this purified liquid as life changing, even helping with stomach issues and acid reflux.

9. Eternal Water

When it comes to spring water from the purest, most naturally alkaline wells, Eternal Water checks the box with full force. Better yet, it's sourced right here in the United States, specifically from the majestic Shasta-Trinity Alps in California. According to Eternal Water, the underground springs were forged from energetic volcanic activity and ancient plate collisions. The waters flow annually thanks to snowmelt from higher altitudes. 

Aside from California, the brand's ancillary sourcing springs are in the Allegheny Mountains, Great Smoky Mountains, and Ouachita National Forest. This highly-acclaimed water brand also established an unwavering commitment never to include additives. The only "extras" you'll find are naturally occurring electrolytes. Rest assured, this water bottle company also fosters an eternal fan group on Amazon, with 82% five-star reviews.

"I love this water! I've been drinking it for over a year, consistently tastes great, no weird smell like some reviewers claim, very hydrating. Contains NO fluoride! If you go to Eternal's FAQ page, it says using regular pH test strips will NOT accurately determine pH- so for me, I go with how I feel- LOVE Eternal water," said a verified Amazon buyer.

8. Penta

Employing an extensive U.S.-patented 13-step purification process to obliterate all impurities, Penta Water is marketed as an ultra-pure, bottled water brand, completely free of nasty pollution and additives. This crystal-clean water runs through microfiltration to remove contaminants, reverse osmosis to excavate impurities, plus deionization to strip away lingering minerals.

It's then described as being chlorine-free, arsenic-free, fluoride-free, along with a litany of other attractive specifications. Basically, in layman's terms, this is as pure as you can find. It's also important to note that since Penta doesn't include additives, it has a natural occurring pH. If things couldn't look brighter, they also utilize solar energy to fuel the entire purification and bottling process.

Many reviewers describe Penta as the ultimate hydration and ultra smooth to drink, unlike any other water brands available on the market. "No other water I've tried can hydrate my body like Penta. I can literally tell the difference, especially early in the morning on an empty stomach. Every other water sort of lays there in the stomach and sloshes around for a while before moving slowly through the system. Plus I can tell it never really hydrates me fully, and I'm still thirsty. Not so with this. This one also helps with constipation because it gets into your tissues quickly and efficiently," wrote one satisfied Amazon reviewer.

7. Acqua Panna

If you're dreaming of soaking up the sun somewhere amongst the Tuscan hills, then Acqua Panna will surely transport you there. According to Drinkpreneur, this water was named after the actual Villa Panna Estate, owned by Florence's Medici family.

A 100% natural spring water that complements any fine dining experience, we can't help but note that this might be the classiest H20 on our list. It's to no surprise that the brand's tagline is "water worth savoring." This smooth-as-silk water is also naturally alkaline and filtered to preserve a special mineral balance that lends to its sophisticated taste.

"Expensive, yes. But nothing really compares. It's great with fine meals, and it clears the palate very well. What I like is that it has a high mineral content that tastes sweet on the buds," wrote one Amazon purchaser.

All Acqua Panna bottles are 100% recyclable and are BPA free. Overall, we're positive that Acqua Panna won't disappoint and is always a sweet indulgence.

6. Ethos

Chances are, you've spotted Ethos in the cooler at your local Starbucks. Perhaps you even picked up a bottle with your to-go protein box or ham and swiss baguette. Or maybe you've seen celebrities like Leonardo DiCaprio and Cameron Diaz endorse it while walking the red carpet. Not only is it a high-quality, natural spring water brand, but Starbucks-owned Ethos maintains strong philanthropic roots by donating five cents per bottle sold to helping children around the world drink clean water.

"When our customers choose to buy Ethos Water, they're improving the lives of people who lack vital resources," Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz said in 2008, according to MotherJones. So not only will grabbing a bottle of Ethos keep you hydrated, but you'll be helping people in water-stressed areas.

You might question the quality of bottled water at Starbucks, but trust us, this one is not bitter whatsoever and is smooth, down to the very last drop! 

5. Waiākea

If you can't hop on a plane to visit the lush, tropical lands of Hilo, Hawaii, perhaps sipping on Waiākea water will quickly take you there. This brand says its water is known as "purity in its ultimate form." As Waiākea tells it, the process to pump this water is intricate and starts in the bio-diverse forests of Hilo. On the eastern base of the Mauna Loa volcano is a deep well where the water from the snowmelt slowly filters through porous, volcanic rock. As a result, you're left with naturally alkaline water with a pH range of 7.6 to 8.2. Some varieties of Waiākea water are even bottled in a sustainable, proprietary bottle made from refillable aluminum. On Trustpilot, this water brand garners over 600 excellent reviews, mainly highlighting the pristine, fresh taste that's so arduous to find with other mainstream bottled water brands.

"Love this water. Tastes so clean and pure and very hydrating. So glad Sam's Club carries this. I was surprised to see that my nails have been growing so much quicker too. My kids also love it. I sure hope Sam's Club keeps this product," said Jessica via Trustpilot.

4. Voss

When we think of Voss, visions of heading to the spa for a luxurious self-care day comes to mind. Not only is the BPA-free bottle sleek and refined, the water itself is a notch above the rest, sourced from an aquifer beneath the earth, with minimal Total Dissolved Solids (TDS). If you're not in the mood for still water, you can even opt for sparkling, adding a touch of vigor to your day. Or, you can experiment with VOSS+, bringing another level of designer hydration to the H2O universe.

According to GlobalNewsWire, VOSS+ encompasses three new products, including VOSS + Collagen, VOSS + Vitamin D and VOSS + Aquamin®. If your goal is to preserve a youthful glow, the collagen option is described as "radiance in a bottle," packed with 10 grams of collagen protein, keeping your skin beaming and healthy.

Needless to say, we're certain that any of these deluxe water options from Voss will definitely quench your thirst.

3. Icelandic Glacial

With a high pH level of 8.4, Icelandic Glacial is positioned as a special hydrating elixir filtered for 5,000 years through layers of lava rock, then sourced from one of the most immaculate ecosystems in Iceland — the Ölfus Spring. It's also the very first water bottle company to be certified carbon neutral by a permitting body. In layman's terms, this means that the sourcing and bottling process is powered in a way that doesn't add any carbon to the climate (per CNET). 

The award-winning packaging is also unmissable, emulating the natural curvature of sculpted glaciers. Per Icelandic Glacial, the packaging was even recognized as the "Best Overall Concept and Best Label" at the Bottled Water World Design Awards in 2005. Icelandic Glacial is a state-of-the-art water brand that promises to deliver the cleanest water in the world. Also, with over 10,000 reviews on Amazon, many consumers share an unwavering loyalty to this brand.

"I am a water junkie and if my advice counts for anything, this is one of the best tasting waters I have ever had. It's so clear and smooth. Now I talk about water like it's a cocktail or can of soda, and maybe water is water. However, this water really is a cut above the rest" said a verified Amazon reviewer.

2. Evian

Most hydrologists will agree that Evian is one of the most straightforward, credible water brands on the market, simply because of its "nothing added" approach. Evian comes straight from nature without any enhancements or additives. In fact, this unadulterated water is sourced from a glacial plateau in the majestic French Alps that was formed almost 50,000 years ago! The filtration process leaves in naturally occurring electrolytes and minerals, with a pH of 7.2 When you drink Evian, it's a guarantee that you'll drink crisp, rejuvenating bottled water that hydrates your entire body quickly.

In fact, this type of hydration is so potent that it can completely up-level your beauty routine. Evian partnered up with Bluemercury to advocate beauty from within, starting with drinking high-quality water. Ultimately, Evian leaves your skin feeling fully hydrated and glowing. So if you're yearning to feel good from the inside out, stock up on Evian.

1. Fiji

Since 1996, Fiji has offered clean, rainforest water to 60 countries. Sourced from an ancient artesian aquifer surrounded by dormant volcanoes, its purity is simply due to the fact that it's naturally filtered by volcanic rock. This allows the water to collect substantial amounts of electrolytes and minerals including silica, calcium, and magnesium, which enhance its effortless, pleasant taste.

Some also view Fiji as luxury water, but in our opinion, it's completely warranted. According to The Cold Wire, Fiji has spent millions of dollars on becoming a 100% green company and living by a sustainability pledge. This includes using minimal resources and minimizing their carbon footprint as well as carbon emissions. It's also high in demand, especially within the hospitality industry, which logically drives up the price. Regardless, customers continue to buy Fiji simply due to its reputation and natural taste.

"I am the most fanatical person when it comes to drinking water. After having stomach surgery, my taste buds have eliminated most brands of bottled water because I taste unpleasant chemicals and such. This is the only brand I buy! Nothing compares to my Fiji water," raved one Amazon buyer.