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5 “Magic Cups” To Get If You Wanna Sip In Style Like PM Lee, May Help You Change Language

PM Lee magic cup lookalikes

PM Lee Hsien Loong has seen us through some really tough times, like the 2008 financial crisis and the Covid-19 pandemic. Through all that, he’s kept a calm and collected spirit through his addresses to the crowd. There’s something that enthralls us about PM Lee’s speeches – yes, it’s the iconic “magic cup”, which supposedly has language-changing properties.

It has become a meme, and even sparked sales as Singaporeans island-wide sought to get a piece of this classy cup. Here’s where you can buy one of your own. Mother tongue improvement, not guaranteed.

Who is PM Lee Hsien Loong?

Mr Lee Hsien Loong served as Singapore’s Prime Minister from 12th August 2004 to 15th May 2024. He is the 3rd prime minister of Singapore since the country gained independence in 1965. His father was the late Mr Lee Kuan Yew, who was Singapore’s first prime minister in 1965.

After the reins are handed over to the new prime minister – Mr Lawrence Wong – Mr Lee will continue working in government as a Minister of Parliament for the Ang Mo Kio GRC.

Mr Lee was known especially during the Covid-19 pandemic to give speeches in multiple languages when addressing citizens and residents of Singapore over live broadcast. In between his speeches in one language to another, he would take a sip of water, usually from a blue cup. This created a meme among netizens that the cups he was drinking out of gave him the ability to switch languages seamlessly.

1. The deadringer

pm lee cups - supermama the original magic cup
Image credit: Supermama Store

For 100/100 in your Mother Tongue classes, opt for this cup that isn’t just a carbon copy of PM Lee’s magic cup – it’s been sourced from the original Kyushu makers.

The cup has been hand-painted in motifs of the Tembusu flower – a symbol of resilience and purpose – that we Singaporeans direly needed in times of crises.

Get The Original Magic Cup at the Supermama Store.

2. The one with the watercolour scales

PM Lee, like the fashionista he is, changes up cups from time to time. And we’ve spotted him using a white one with a tasteful blue scale-like pattern.

pm lee cups - lee hsien loong speech
Image credit: Prime Minister’s Office via YouTube

We pronounce ourselves #influenced. And so, we hunted down these surprisingly affordable porcelain cups that start from *gasp* $4.39. Looks like you can be an icon too without spending too much of your CPF.

Get the watercolour teacups on Shopee.

3. Tea sets for you and bae to sip together

pm lee cups - umi tea sets
Image credit: Umi Tea Sets

We can’t talk about PM Lee and not mention the force by his side – his supportive wife Ho Ching. They’re the epitome of “good things come in twos”.

That’s why we like these hand-printed tea cups from Umi Tea Sets for you and your partner to class up dabao sushi dinners. These will make you feel like you’re off in a Zen garden in Tokyo, when really the closest option is to bluff friends you’re in Japan in SG.

Get these from Umi Tea Sets.

4. Wide range of floral motifs

pm lee cups - shopee
Image credit: Shopee

We’ve narrowed down the reason why PM Lee’s cup has captured so many hearts. 1) Its deep blue colour evokes a sense of calm, and 2) the floral motifs echo our Garden City beauty.

So, if you want something a tad more creative without losing the magical formula, pick from these floral cups that range from quirky to classy.

Get floral motif cups from Shopee.

5. Support local & make PM proud

pm lee cups - thow kwang pottery jungle
Image credit: Pottery Jungle 

For those who prefer to have a handle on things while sipping tea, these mugs are a great option, while still embodying the white and blue motifs preferred by PM Lee. This choice also allows you to #supportlocal, something we’re sure PM Lee would’ve approved of. These are made at Thow Kwang Pottery Jungle, a local 3-gen owned pottery business and the last surviving dragon kiln in Singapore.

Get the monochrome mug series at Thow Kwang Pottery Jungle.

Sipping on the tea with PM Lee’s magic cup

Whatever “magic cup”-style you rock in the end, we’re glad you did your Singaporean duty in making it our next national icon. Till then, you can check out PM Lee’s shirt collection while we await the next tea-spilling announcement. Happy sipping!

Cover image adapted from: Supermama Store, Prime Minister’s Office, Shopee
Originally published on 3rd June 2021. Last updated by Raewyn Koh on 14th May 2024.