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Why are these pink Stanley tumblers causing shopping mayhem?

Limited edition pink Stanley tumblers going for thousands on eBay
Limited edition pink Stanley tumblers going for thousands on eBay 00:38

Video from a Target store in Goodyear, Arizona, this December shows shoppers frantically rushing to a display of red and pink water bottles, trying to grab one before the rest of the crowd does. At a Target in Wesley Chapel, Florida, shoppers joined a massive line before the store even opened — with the goal of getting to the shelves of highly coveted cups. 

Once inside shoppers pushed, shoved and shouted, until they grabbed a coveted Stanley tumbler. So, why did these large tumblers suddenly cause shopping mayhem? Because they're Stanley Quenchers – and they're all the rage.

Stanley is popular for their large water bottles with handles, called Quenchers, and are available in the U.S., Canada, Brazil, New Zealand, Europe, Japan and the U.K.

They released two new Quenchers — a hot pink and a red — as part of a "Galentine's" collection on Dec. 31, sold exclusively at Target. On Jan. 3, they released another "Winter Pink" tumbler at Target in collaboration with Starbucks. In both cases, customers could only purchase the tumblers in limited quantities, which then sold out online and created shopping mayhem.

The "Galentine's" tumblers — a term that describes women and girls celebrating friendship on Valentine's Day — are sold out in both colors on the Target website. And the listing for the Starbucks "Winter Pink" tumbler isn't even available anymore. 

What is behind the Stanley cup craze?

Stanleys provide a way for hydration enthusiasts to consume a lot of water in an eco-friendly way since they are reusable. The company promises their Quenchers keep water with ice cold for 48 hours and hold up to 40 oz. of water. 

They come in several colors and sizes and have inspired a cult-like following, with fans collecting them in different hues. Stanley launched the "Quencher H2.0 FlowState" tumbler — the newest version of its Adventure Quencher Travel Tumbler — in August 2022. The sustainable bottle is comprised of 90% recycled stainless steel and is vacuum-insulated. 

A Stanley Quencher travel mug
A (non-pink) Stanley Quencher H2.0 FlowState tumbler  Stanley

"The Quencher has become an internet sensation over the last two years," Global President of Stanley Brand Terence Reilly said in a news release at the time. "As it has quickly risen in popularity — with restocks selling out in mere minutes and videos quickly going viral on social media — we wanted to continue to provide innovative products and solutions for our consumers."

The cult following of the brand has resulted in more than 232 million views of the #stanleyquencher hashtag on TikTok. The Stanley brand itself also has a popular TikTok, with more than 9.6 million likes on videos. The brand also has more than 1.5 million followers across Instagram and TikTok.

The new Stanley Valentine's and Starbucks cups

Perhaps the newest Stanleys were so coveted because they were limited. 

At some stores, the new "Galentine's" tumblers were limited to two per customer, as seen in the video taken at the Target in Goodyear. At a store in Fort Worth, Texas, the limit was one per household, according to a video from influencer Vincent Marcus.

The Starbucks tumblers were limited edition and have sold out at many stores, and will not be restocked, a Starbucks representative confirmed to CBS News. 

A shopper named Bella in Wesley Chapel, Florida, "vlogged" her experience trying to get the Starbucks "Winter Pink" tumbler on Jan. 3 — posting several videos on TikTok chronicling the adventure. She said she got to the store at 4:40 a.m. and there were about three other people in line. 

But as the sun rose and the store prepared to open, the line grew. Her video shows a mad dash to the Starbucks kiosk in the store, where the tumblers were on display — two people even got into an argument, she said. Bella went home with two tumblers and she amassed more than 3.3 million views across her Stanley-focused videos. 

A video that appears to show people allegedly trying to steal Stanley tumblers from Target has also been circulating on TikTok.

Most 40 oz. Stanley Quenchers cost $45 on the Stanley website but the special Starbucks one went for $49.95. Some people who were able to nab the cup are now re-selling them on eBay — with one listed at $300. Another is listed on StockX for $234.

Perhaps the year of Barbiecore inspired by the "Barbie" movie fueled shoppers' desire for Stanley's pink items. Bella dressed in pink when she waited in line for her cup, as did other shoppers, videos show. 

And Marcus who took his daughter to camp out for the Starbucks Stanley at Target in Fort Worth, Texas, showed she wore a Barbie sweatshirt. Vincent arrived before 3 a.m. and since they were some of the first people there, they were able to get one.

CBS News has also reached out to Target and Stanley for more information and is awaiting a response. 

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