The coolest loose leaf tea infusers in existence

loose leaf tea infusers

I never thought I'd see the day, but it turns out I was in need of a loose leaf tea infuser. Of course I can't just buy your run-of-the-mill tea infuser. You know Megan "All-my-kitchen-utensils-look-like-animals" Finley needs something funky and silly.

I eventually went with the Star Wars Death Star tea infuser. But I had to share all my awesome shopping finds, since I know our Homies love them some tea, and because I discovered a treasure trove of fun tea infusers.

From shark fins (duh) to a "tea Rex," these little guys will brighten your mornings before you even get your first sip of caffeine.

The aforementioned Death Star Tea Infuser
The aforementioned Death Star Tea Infuser
Steep Takeoff Tea Infuser
Rocket Tea Infuser and Drip Tray
Robot Tea Infuser $9.99
Robot Tea Infuser
0e134fec67ba857f0387f0fba18e0605
Cliff Climber Tea Infuser
Duck Tea Infuser
Duck Tea Infuser
Deep Tea Diver tea infuser
Deep Tea Diver tea infuser
Fred and Friends Mister Tea Infuser on sale for $7.94
Fred and Friends Mister Tea Infuser
Tovolo TeaGo - The Mobile Tea Press on sale for $11.47
Tovolo TeaGo – The Mobile Tea Press
Teatanic Unsinkable Tea Infuser $9.99
Teatanic Unsinkable Tea Infuser
Sharky Tea Infuser $14
Sharky Tea Infuser $14
Yellow Submarine Tea Infuser $12.04
Yellow Submarine Tea Infuser $12.04
Tea Rex Tea Infuser
Tea Rex Tea Infuser $9.06
Glass Tea Infuser and Mixer with Wood Handle on sale for $9.99
Glass Tea Infuser and Mixer with Wood Handle on sale for $9.99
Floatin' Whale Tea Infuser $10.
Floatin' Whale Tea Infuser $10.
ManaTEA Infuser $11.99
ManaTEA Infuser $11.99

So what is YOUR favorite tea infuser of choice?

  1. I got my husband the Yellow Submarine tea infuser for his Christmas stocking a few years ago and he loves it. He giggles a little every time he uses it :)

    1 agrees
    • I have the same one! I love it, but I tend not to use it because it's such a pain to clean.

      Does anyone know if there's a special/effective way to clean out all those itty bitty leaves from funky-shaped tea infusers?

      2 agree
      • I think dunk and swish in a bowl or sink is more effective than rinsing it, and the sooner you clean it out after using it the better. (But who cleans right away anyway?)

        1 agrees
  2. Can anyone recommend one that doesn't let through leaves? I'm new to loose tea and I have a cheap metal ball and a mug with a ceramic insert. Both let stuff through.

    2 agree
    • Anything with a mesh screen rather than a ball won't, although if the screen comes detached it may spill out (attach them carefully and they won't). My duck doesn't.

      An expensive metal ball won't, either.

      2 agree
      • I have several kinds of tea where the mesh does not hold everything in. The only thing I've found that works for all my teas is those disposable tea bags, which I feel are wasteful so I just wind up drinking chunky tea all the time :(

        1 agrees
        • Straining the tea on its way into the tea cups, instead of trying to contain the leaves while they're in the pot, tends to be more effective, since the leaves (and other particulate matter in flavoured teas and herbal teas) expand in the water, and thus don't fit through such darned small holes. Or you can just get used to having some dregs in the bottom of your cup and needing to pour out the last mouthful or so.

          4 agree
          • Now that you say it, it makes perfect sense! I will try straining it on my next pot. :)

            1 agrees
          • I use a french coffee press for all my loose teas. It strains the tea on the way to the cup and has a fine mesh so no tea in my mug ever and I can make a lot or a little.

            4 agree
        • I use an antique tea strainer, somewhat like this:

          http://www.tias.com/14204/PictPage/3923804927.html

          You brew the tea, hold that over a cup, and pour. Because tea leaves sink, you're really only filtering a couple. In fact, if you pour carefully you can do this without the strainer.

          Though I suppose you could also use a very small sieve, like this:

          0 agree
      • Quite agree. I put up the big bucks ($15) for my strainers and have absolute minimal leaves escaping. I was gifted a ceramic strainer mug set and I NEVER use it because it's pretty useless at straining :(

        When I say minimal leaves escaping, I mean that there are some leaves that are soooo fine that they'll escape from pretty much anything. I don't tend to drink the dregs of my tea because of the fine ground leaves and that last bit is typically luke-warm by the time I get to it (yuck). I miss out on half a mouthful per cup of tea. But that's ok with me :)

        1 agrees
    • While not nearly as fun or whimsical as the infusers listed above, I love this contraption because it has the finest mesh I've seen and is easier to clean than my tea ball was:
      http://www.adagio.com/teaware/ingenuiTEA_teapot.html

      Even with chamomile flower tea that has those tiny little spiky things, nothing gets through this baby!

      3 agree
      • Late to the party, but I use that every weekday to fill my thermos! It's pretty fun to pour out. When I don't need to make more than a cup, I use a brewing basket (Finum, medium size) since it's easier to judge how much water to pour. Not as fun as the strainers in this article, but it works really well and cleans up quickly.

        0 agree
    • I am a BIG tea drinker…especially loose leaf.

      I love all of the adorable tea steepers, but honestly the BEST way to brew loose leaf, so that you dont get any leaves in your cup, is a tea maker like this: Adagio Teas 16-Ounce Ingenuitea Teapot

      1 agrees
  3. I have the duck! It's super fun – if you let the tea soak up water for a few seconds it'll float on your glass like a rubber ducky. Hands Tailung, the Japanese import store where I got it in Taiwan, also sells a flowerpot tea infuser. It looks like a flower is growing out of your tea mug, and the infuser sits in a brown rubber flowerpot when not in use.

    0 agree
  4. I wish my sister drank tea. She's terrified of sharks and I'd kill for another way to give her a scare.

    1 agrees
    • Welp, I should have finished reading the comments because I just posted the same link, haha! Seconded!

      2 agree
  5. When we were studying abroad in China last summer, my significant other found this adorable Deep Sea Tea Diver in a Shanghai novelty shop.

    http://www.thinkgeek.com/product/f01f/

    I was totally thrilled and still use it for the loose leaf oolang that I bought in Beijing (huge box provided me with tea for a year and counting! Yay yummy tea!)

    0 agree
  6. I'm IN LOVE with my infuser. The mesh is very fine so I don't get a lot of floaties and it is very easy to clean. That's a big plus since there's no sink in my office. I have to walk to the other end of the building and use the sink in the public bathroom. Once I take it appart it just needs a quick rinse out the window from my drinking water and it's ready to reload.

    http://gamilacompany.com/tea/gems/features.html

    0 agree
  7. My husband proposed with a note in a Tea Rex because we have a thing about lizards.

    4 agree
  8. I feel like a lot of these you need a clear mug to fully enjoy, but owning an arsenal of fun tea balls would make me happy!

    1 agrees
    • If you happen to be looking for a clear mug, I fully recommend a double-walled glass mug. We have bodum's espresso glasses and they're amaaazing. I never even feel the slightest bit of warmth from my glass. While that's part of the loveliness of a ceramic mug, it can sometimes be a real OUCH situation with hot cocoa (or fresh espresso.) :P

      1 agrees
  9. So totally love the Death Star one! My tea infusers are more mundane- just mesh baskets that clip onto the side of the tea cup.

    1 agrees
  10. We mostly have the boring round tea balls, although we do have one that's heart-shaped. I'm a big fan of mesh ones, since they let the water circulate better, thus steeping the tea better.

    0 agree
  11. My husband got me the duck one as a "Yay you survived your first year of law school" present. I of course had to use it in my mug with a duck protruding from it. :)

    1 agrees
  12. erk, hate to be a buzzkillington, the the images for the Sharky tea infuser up there aren't actually the model for sale on Amazon; the gorgeous sleek metal version pictured is a design by Pablo Metteoda, and never seems to have actually been made for production. The one on Amazon is still cute, but a markedly different design.
    Don't ask me how many years I've been scouring the internet hoping that original version would be put in production!

    1 agrees
  13. I have a thing for tea infusers. It's a real problem. Tomorrow my goal is to get rid of any lingering ball infusers, which tend to deteriorate more quickly and kinda drive me crazy! I'm on the search for a good stick infuser… I've been thinking about trying this one

    I have to say, however… it isn't very sexy, but the one that has consistently worked the best for me is this gold tea filter

    2 agree
  14. I got the robot for christmas and I really like how easy it is clean. it does let some particulate matter through though.

    0 agree
  15. I agree with those who are endorsing the Adagio or Teavana teamakers… They work like a French press but dispense the tea out of the bottom of the brewer when you set in on top of you cup. I worked in a tea bar for years and we used a model from Ten Ren that works the same way.

    I just wanted to point out that in addition to the very fine mesh strainer, these brewers give you the added advantage of SPACE for your leaves to expand so the flavor can infuse properly. Not so much an issue if you are brewing an herbal tea that has finely-chopped ingredients, but if you are brewing a nice full-leaf tea you can taste the difference, and since full-leaf is generally more expensive, you want to taste your money's worth! It is amazing to see the volume of the wet leaves after your tea has been brewed, and many really adorable tea balls just don't have that kind of room. That being said, I'm a sucker for cute tea accessories!

    2 agree
  16. As someone who absolutely hates the taste of tea (and I've tried several versions), is there anything else that these cute little things can be used for? They're so CUTE. I really want the death star one. But I never drink tea ever.

    0 agree
    • No joke: That Death Star tea infuser is hanging on my Christmas tree right now. It makes a lovely ornament. ;)

      0 agree

Join the conversation

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

No-drama comment policy

Part of what makes the Offbeat Empire different is our commitment to civil, constructive commenting. Make sure you're familiar with our no-drama comment policy.

Biz owners & wedding bloggers

Please just use your real name in your comment, not your business name or blog title. Our comments are not the place to pimp your website. If you want to promote your stuff on Offbeat Bride, join us as an advertiser instead.