Single serve blenders are handy if you’re regularly making smoothies to serve just one or two people. Some models include lids that allow you to use the blender cup as a to-go cup.
Blenders with carafes come in various sizes, but are generally for larger blending jobs. If you want to blend icy drinks for a group of people, a medium carafe would suffice. However, if you want to blend a full batch of soup, you’ll need a bigger carafe.
Some blenders offer the best of both worlds, with both carafes and single serve travel cups that fit on the same base, so you can easily switch back and forth.
Some blenders offer you different speed settings. Slower speeds are good for grinding things more gradually and faster speeds mix liquids together quickly.
Pulse or ice crush buttons can come in handy if you want to make slushy drinks or blend frozen fruit.
Higher end blenders may also have auto settings, depending on what you’re blending. A smoothie setting, for example, would start by pulsing the frozen components and then pull everything down to continue mixing.