You're Holding Your Coffee Cup All Wrong

by Sara Levine
Rachata Teyparsit / EyeEm/EyeEm/Getty Images

Ah, coffee. Nectar of the gods. The only thing that gets me up in the morning. The reason my eye is twitching right now. All of us coffee addicts probably know the feeling of getting a warm cup of coffee to get you through the day, cupping the mug in your hands to keep your fingers warm. It makes sense, right? One, it's cold outside and my fingers are usually the first part of my body to really feel it, so they need to be thawed. Two, how often are the little handles on the mug actually big enough for me to put my hand through? Not often enough. It's always super awkward (and kind of painful) when I have to try to hold an entire mug of hot coffee with one finger because the little loop between the mug and the handle is way too small. However, even though encircling your coffee mug in your hands makes sense, that's not the right way to hold a coffee cup.

I know, it's totally earth-shattering. According to etiquette expert Myka Meier, when you drink your cup of joe you're supposed to loop your index finger through the handle, keeping your thumb on top of the handle. Your other three fingers should be tucked into the bottom of your hand, like so:

Don't worry, tea drinkers, Meier also has some guidelines for you. And yes, it matters — she explains that a coffee cup is usually bigger and heavier than a teacup, and it typically contains more liquid. Therefore, holding coffee requires more support from your index finger than does tea. For tea, she says, "You never loop your index finger into the handle. Instead, your index finger should meet your thumb through the handle as if you were pinching, and your middle finger should support by being placed under the handle. Think ‘pinch and support!'" If that's hard to visualize, think of how you would imagine a British person drinking tea and imitate that, because that's basically how you're supposed to do it.

And no matter what type of hot beverage you drink, Meier notes that the handle of your mug should always be at the 3 o'clock position — so that if you wear lipstick, you only leave one lipstick smudge in one spot, rather than a lipstick ring around the entire rim. However, personally, I don't like putting my lips back on the spot where my lipstick smudge is — I don't know, I just feel like doing so will smudge my lipstick even more — so this is one piece of etiquette advice I will probably not be following.

Another etiquette rule I may never follow? The pinky up rule. Apparently, we've been lied to our entire lives, and drinking with your pinky up is terrible etiquette, and you should never do it. But how will I convey to the world that I'm fancy?? You know what? Some rules are meant to be broken.

Images: Rachata Teyparsit / EyeEm/EyeEm/Getty Images; Giphy (3)