The 12 best tea cups - cozy season is coming and we're style-ready

The 12 best tea cups handpicked by the Livingetc team for their elegance, beauty and all-round power to make you feel elevated while drinking from them

(Image credit: Burke Decor, H&M, Wayfair)

A tea (or coffee) on the run is all well and good, but drinking out of a cardboard cup is rarely an experience to be savoured. Whether it's a breakfast tea, herbal, matcha or another hot brew, sipping from a tea cup is a more satisfying way to indulge - at least, at home. 

The benefits of ritual and slowing down are often touted in our fast-paced world. One way to introduce this is by bringing a sense of occasion to tea drinking with a tea cup.  

Additionally, treating guests to your best tea cups when they drop in is a surefire way to make someone feel welcome. 

Coordinate tea-ware to your best dinnerware sets or choose a special cup for your morning brew. Either way, we've rounded up the best tea cups from the best home decor stores, so you can sit back and relax. 

Best elegant tea cups

Best chunky tea cups

Best quirky tea cups

Best rustic tea cups

What is the best cup to drink tea from?

For centuries, bone china has been considered the best type of cup to drink tea from. This is because bone ash (from animals) is added to the clay, which strengthens the material, so it is less likely to break than porcelain yet bone china has a more delicate and elegant appearance. 

However, vegans and vegetarians may want to opt for porcelain or stoneware for obvious reasons. 

The diameter of the cup is important too. A cup with the same diameter from the top to the bottom will keep your drink hotter than one with a wider brim.

'In a wide shaped cup the tea cools more quickly, in a tall shape it stays warmer longer,' says Louise Rosie, Head of Design at Wedgwood. 'A China or porcelain cup retains the heat better and usually has a finer rim to drink from.' 

'Bone china is microwave safe, dishwasher safe and oven safe. The production of bone china and porcelain is essentially the same, except for the addition of bone ash to the bone china product.

'Porcelain is generally thicker than bone china, as it is forged at a higher temperature.'

Jacky Parker is a London-based freelance journalist and content creator, specialising in interiors, travel and food. From buying guides and real home case studies to shopping and news pages, she produces a wide range of features for national magazines and SEO content for websites

A long-time contributor to Livingetc, as a member of the team, she regularly reports on the latest trends, speaking to experts and discovering the latest tips. Jacky has also written  for other publications such as Homes and Gardens, Ideal Home, Red, Grand Designs, Sunday Times Style and AD, Country Homes and Interiors and ELLE Decoration.