There are many different types of plastics, and each plastic has it's advantages and disadvantages. Because these different materials have different properties, we’ve listed the types of plastics in our products, and how to best care for them. By following these minimal guidelines, we’re sure that you’ll enjoy your purchase for a long time.

Acrylic is molded plastic with great clarity and transparency, and is a good substitute for glass, as it is shatterproof. However, Acrylic will crack or break if dropped! Acrylic glassware will not yellow, and the colors are weather and sunlight resistant; acrylic drinkware resists most chemicals found in normal use. Some of the better-known brands of acrylic plastic are Plexiglass and Lucite. Acrylic glasses are BPA-Free.

Acrylic Care:

  • Acrylic plastic glasses and drinkware are NOT dishwasher-safe. Other companies may claim that acrylic glassware can be cleaned in the dishwasher, but this is incorrect. Dishwasher cleaning agents and heat will quickly cause acrylic plastic glassware to "craze" (develop fine lines or hairline cracks) and leak.
  • Hand washing is the only way to clean acrylic products; again, dishwasher rinse agents and heat will cause quickly cause acrylic glasses to crack and craze (develop hairline cracks).
  • Microwave: Acrylic plastic glassware is not recommended for microwave use.
  • To safely remove sticker residue: Please use an oil-based lubricant such as WD-40 (or any other oil-based brand), or liquid vegetable oils such as Wesson. Don’t use Goo-Gone, nail polish remover or turpentine, as these will damage acrylic.

While polycarbonate glasses and plastic cups may look like acrylic glassware, polycarbonate glassware has a far superior impact and heat resistance than acrylic. It is the same material used to make eyeglass lenses and bullet proof glass - polycarbonate plastic glassware is unbreakable and extremely durable. Polycarbonate unbreakable glasses will maintain their clarity and appearance, and will not crazing after repeated use and washing. The drawback is that polycarbonate is more expensive than acrylic. One of the more popular brand names of polycarbonate is Lexan. A by-product of the polycarbonate manufacturing process is BPA, which has recently been the subject of some controversy. Please see our "About BPA" section below, for the latest findings on this topic.

Polycarbonate Care:

  • Dishwasher safe, top rack only.
  • Low, normal or regular dishwasher cycles only! Higher temperature settings (over 140 degrees F) such as “heavy duty”, “sanitize”, or “pots & pans” will cause cracks.
  • Turn off any “heat dry” or “heated dry” settings; these high temperature settings will also cause polycarbonate to crack.
  • Microwave – Safe for reheating or warming only.
  • Failure to follow these guidelines may void any manufacturer’s warranty.
  • To safely remove sticker residue: An oil-based spray lubricant such as WD-40 works the best, but you may use Goo-Gone or a liquid vegetable oil (Wesson). These are safe to use on polycarbonate glasses (but not on acrylics). Do not use nail polish remover or turpentine, as these will damage the plastic.

"Energy Star", Bosch, Meile, Thermador & Viking dishwashers may have hot water temperatures greater than 140 degrees. Many higher-end dishwashers also offer a "steam clean" cycle. If you own any of these machines, your polycarbonate, SAN, and Tritan products must be hand washed. No plastics can survive the high temperatures that these dishwasher use; we cannot be responsible for any damage caused by putting polycarbonate, SAN or Tritan items in dishwashers.

California residents click here for Proposition 65 warning.

(SAN styrene acrylonitrile) is also a durable, break-resistant plastic. SAN plastic glassware is commercial-quality, break-resistant, but is slightly less glass-like than either polycarbonate or acrylic. However, the difference is minimal, and not usually noticeable. SAN plastic glasses are BPA-Free.

SAN Care: Same as polycarbonate (above).

Tritan is a new BPA-Free plastic material, similar to polycarbonate in durability. However, Tritan plastic stems are more flexible and not as rigid as polycarbonate stemsware.
Tritan Care: Same as polycarbonate (above).

A durable molded material from a different family of plastics with good heat resistance. Melamine is difficult to mold, but easy to decal and decorate. Its hard surfaces can withstand most scratching from metal utensils. However, melamine will chip or crack if dropped on to hard surfaces such as tile, concrete, etc.

Melamine Care:

  • Dishwasher safe.
  • Melamine is not unbreakable, and may chip or crack if dropped on hard surfaces such as tile, marble, granite, or cement.
  • Microwave - Not recommended for microwave use (melamine will absorb heat, and may crack or blister).
  • To safely remove sticker residue: An oil-based spray lubricant such as WD-40 works the best, but you may use Goo-Gone or a liquid vegetable oil (Wesson). These are safe to use on melamine and polycarbonate products (but not on acrylics). Do not use nail polish remover or turpentine, as these will damage the plastic.

Recently, there have been a number of alarming articles regarding polycarbonate plastic, which is used to manufacture many plastic drinkware and glassware items. As a responsible retailer of these products, we and our manufacturers continue to monitor the latest scientific research concerning the safety of our products - including Bisphenol-A (BPA.

Based on the findings of the Food and Drug Administration, The Environmental Protection Agency, The American Plastics Council and other reliable sources from around the world, we continue to firmly believe in the safety of our products.

Recent FDA information regarding BPA:

Clearly Acrylic is committed to the well being of everyone that uses our products. Therefore, we've compiled the following information to better inform our consumers on all of our products. We hope you find it useful and reassuring.

Question: Is polycarbonate beverageware safe?
Answer: Yes. Agencies and researchers worldwide have studied the safety of BPA and polycarbonate for approximately 50 years; including The Environmental Protection Agency and The Food and Drug Administration in the USA, The European Commission Scientific Committee on Food, The German Federal Institute for Risk Assessment and the Japan Ministry of Health, Labor and Welfare. Findings of studies from these agencies indicate that food and beverage containers manufactured from polycarbonate do not pose a health risk to humans. Polycarbonate is used in a wide variety of consumer products including beverageware, water bottles, dental sealants, thermal cash register receipts, and the lining of most metal food and beverage containers; it has been used for over 45 years.

Question: Why does Clearly Acrylic sell polycarbonate glasses?
Answer: Many consumers still prefer polycarbonate because of its unmatched ability to offer extraordinary durability, glass like clarity and resistance to stains and odors. Plus, polycarbonate has been widely used by many companies throughout the food and beverage industry, as well as other consumer products, for over forty-five years. We also offer many alternative products in acrylic, SAN, or Tritan Co-Polyester, which do not contain Bisphenol-A (BPA).

California residents click here for Proposition 65 warning.