11 Best Sand For Sandboxes For A Relaxed Play At Home In 2024

Playing in sand develops multiple skills in children, from developing motor skills to building hand-eye coordination. Keeping a sandbox at home can help your children engage in fun activities. But when it comes to choosing the type of sand to fill in it, always go for the best sand for the sandbox.

Not too sure about what kinds of sands are available in the market. Read on as we list some tried-and-tested and best-selling sand for sandboxes from trusted brands.

In This Article

Benefits Of Sand Play

Sand play is advantageous for children for several reasons.

  • Offers hours of fun learning as your child gets to learn various names and shapes of structures made from sand.
  • Improves language abilities, communication skills and social skills.
  • Improves chances of learning about proprioceptive senses as they get completely immersed into the sand; thus, understanding the body relative to space.
  • Lets your child develop fine motor skills as they use tools to dig, bury and build in the sand.

Types Of Sand For Sandbox

Different types of sand can be used to fill up a sandbox.

  1. Natural sand: It typically comes from the desert or the beach, and forms naturally from small, eroded rocks. Because of this formation, this sand type is coarser than others. Generally, manufacturers wash and filter the sand before sending it for packaging.
  2. Processed sand: This one is made in quarries and gravel pits. With thorough washing and filtering, the sand is made safe for kids.
  3. Kinetic sand: It is coated with polydimethylsiloxane, a silicone-based, nontoxic organic polymer used in soft clay products. With this coating, the sand sticks together; thus, forming a moldable composition for building in the sand without any water requirements.

11 Best Sand For Sandboxes

1. Best Environmentally-Friendly: Sandtastik Sparkling White Play Sand

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4.5
Sandtastik Sparkling White Play Sand Image: Sandtasik

Ideal for childcare centers and early childhood classrooms, this set of 25 pounds of sand helps create castles or sculptures by adding a little water. This easy to rake sandbox sand is ideal for indoor and outdoor play. Molds will be great when moist. The parent-recommended safe play sand is completely environmentally friendly and contains no quartz or silica.

Batteries: 1 Unknown batteries required | Item Weight: 25 pounds | Product Dimensions: 11 x 8.5 x 5.5 inches | Material: Sand | Color: White

Pros

  • Devoid of unwanted chemicals
  • Has soft texture
  • Naturally occurring sparkle
  • Minimal fine particle content

Cons

  • May not be clean

Our Reviewer's Experience

"The quality of this sand is quite impressive. It's perfect for sensory bins and feels great whether the little hands are dry or wet, offering a range of sensory delights."


protip_icon Caution
Keep the sand away from children below three years, as it may cause choking if they accidentally swallow it.

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Why We Think It's Worth Buying

Over 6,291 satisfied customers on Amazon have said good things about the product.

2. Best Hypoallergenic Kinetic Sand:Kinetic Sand Construction Site Folding Sandbox Playset

Made from all-natural sand and free of casein, gluten, and wheat, this kinetic sand is non-toxic, safe, and hypoallergenic. The playset offers endless construction fun and is ideal for children aged three years and above. You get everything needed to create a construction site. The tried-and-tested playset comes with 2lb brown kinetic sand, a dump truck with brick molds in the back, a brick platform, a folding sandbox, a working crane with a wrecking ball, bucket attachments, and an instruction sheet.

Item Weight: 4 pounds | Product Dimensions: 9.25 x 8.66 x 6.5 inches | Item Weight: 4 Pounds | Material: Plastic | Color: Construction Site

Pros

  • Easy-to-separate sand
  • Easy to clean
  • Allergy-friendly sandbox sand
  • Enclosed construction-themed play space

Cons

  • May create a lot of mess
  • Truck parts may fall soon

3. Best For Relaxing:Cool Sand Off-White Refill Pack

Moldable, safe, and mess-free, this off-white sand doesn’t dry out when shaped, sliced, or molded. The sand sticks to itself and not on any other material; hence, it is easy to clean. Moreover, it is a 100% non-toxic play sand. This white sandbox sand can stimulate the creative, educational, and sensory skills of your child while letting them have endless fun. The pack includes an inflatable sandbox tray that makes everything convenient.

Item Weight: 5.77 pounds | Product Dimensions: 8 x 5.8 x 5.5 inches | Material: Sand | Color: Off-white

Pros

  • Relaxes and de-stresses people of all ages
  • Can also be used as a fidget toy
  • Squishable, squeezable, and stretchable
  • 98% non-toxic and 2% polymer wax

Cons

  • Does not get wet
  • May not be mixed with regular sand

Our Reviewer's Experience

"My kids totally enjoy playing with this sand because of its fresh, non-sticky, moldable nature�it's a plus for easy cleanup. The included inflatable tray is a definite bonus for a mess-free indoor play. I've also noticed spraying a little water on the sand makes the texture firmer."


4. Best Mess-Free:Kiddos Land Dino Play Sand

Magical and safe, this play sand has the fluidity, texture, and plasticine plasticity of ordinary sand. It also has the culpability and cleavability of toy sand. The durable and premium sandbox sand is made of 100% non-toxic and eco-friendly material and is safe to play with. The sand kit comprises moving sand, cleaning tools, dyno molds, sandbox, dinosaur toy, etc.

Item Weight: 3.08 pounds | Product Dimensions: 10 x 8 x 4 inches | Material: Plastic | Color: Main

Pros

  • Includes 38 different sand accessories
  • Mess-free
  • Easy to fold and unfold
  • Eco-friendly sandbox sand
  • Comfortable and motivates imagination and creativity

Cons

  • Accessories may not be highly durable
  • May not stick adequately

Our Reviewer's Experience

"These dinosaur-shaped molds and tools are my toddler's favorite! The collapsible sandbox is a handy option for easy storage post-play. It also comes with a broom and dustpan, making the clean-up process a breeze."


5. Best For Building And Molding:Quickrete Play Sand

4.4

With 50 pounds of sand in one bag, you can choose this option if you want to make concrete or fill the sandbox of your child. This play sand is a trusted choice of many parents as it is ideal for building and molding. To ensure safety, the dust-free sand has been screened, washed, and dried appropriately.

Color: Tan | Color: ‎Tan | Product Dimensions: ‎4.5 x 13 x 19.5 inches | Item Weight: ‎50 pounds

Pros

  • Non-dusty sand
  • Fine option to play with
  • Soft sandbox sand

Cons

  • May have a slightly coarse texture

Our Reviewer's Experience

"Quikrete's sand makes for an excellent addition to playtime for my kids and their friends. The quantity is impressive, allowing them to play with it as much as possible. It also comes in handy for some of my household use."


6. Best For Finger Flexibility:Theefun Dino Sand Kit

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4.5
Theefun Dino Sand Kit Image: Theefun

With 3lb of sand in red, blue, and original colors, the moving sand has the fluidity and texture of ordinary sand. The entire kit consists of amazing 46-piece accessories to play with. You will get ten dinosaur figures, five fake trees, and ten dino molds to build a mini dinosaur world. If not, you can also build a castle with five sand tools and six castle molds. You will also receive small dummy accessories, shovel, footprint roller, foldable sandbox, etc.

Item Weight: 4.6 pounds | Product Dimensions: 15.7 x 10.03 x 3.22 inches | Material: Sand | Color: Dinosaur

Pros

  • Helps develop eye-hand coordination
  • Improves finger flexibility
  • Enhances imagination and creativity
  • A free foldable sandbox that can be folded and unfolded within seconds

Cons

  • Sand may not be sufficient for the entire box
  • May not be highly durable

Our Reviewer's Experience

"This kit with assorted molds and other playful tools has become a staple to my kids' creative playtime. Though the included sand was a bit crumbly initially, after airing it out, it appears to be more enjoyable to play with."


protip_icon Caution
Don’t add water to the sand; spray water to the air above the sand if it feels dry, and don’t store it in sunlight.

worth-buy-icon

Why We Think It's Worth Buying

The 1,600 reviews on Amazon indicate that this product has a loyal following.

7. Best Non-Toxic:Earthborn Elements Play Sand

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4.1
Earthborn Elements Play Sand Image: Earthborn Elements

Designed for outdoor and indoor play areas and sandboxes, this helps children build and mold as per their imagination. This time-tested play sand helps promote your little one’s spatial awareness, kinesthetics skills, and creativity. The odorless multi-purpose sand can be grated, washed, and refined for landscaping and other uses.

Item Weight: 10.65 pounds | Material: Plastic

Pros

  • Non-toxic
  • Clean and devoid of smell
  • Durable bucket

Cons

  • May not mold well
  • Would have to stay wet to play

Our Reviewer's Experience

"The fine, smooth play sand has been a lovely addition to my little one's sensory play. Though I noticed a few pebbles in it, nothing a bit of sifting couldn't fix. Also, the tight lid is much appreciated for preserving the freshness."


worth-buy-icon

Why We Think It's Worth Buying

It's no wonder that this quality product has earned over 816 positive reviews on Amazon.

8. Best Silica-Free:Calcean BAHA Natural Play Sand

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4.4
Calcean BAHA Natural Play Sand Image: Calcean

Non-toxic and sustainable, this play sand is quartz-, dust- and silica-free, a sand option for children to play with. Harvested from the crystal-clear oceans of The Bahamas, this play sand doesn’t have any impurities or harmful organics. This silica-free sandbox sand has a round and smooth texture and is uniform in grain size.

Color: Natural Sand (Tan) | Product Dimensions: 14 x 6 x 3 inches | Weight: 19.8 Pounds.

Pros

  • Ideal for indoor and outdoor play
  • Environmental-friendly
  • Moldable sandbox sand

Cons

  • Could be powdery
  • May create a lot of mess

Our Reviewer's Experience

"The dust-free nature of this sand ensures fuss-free, creative playtime for my children. It sifts well through all their toys and delivers a clean feel. The fine texture makes it fun to play with, and I like that it is non-toxic and natural."


9. Best Cute And Attractive Set:Little Chubby One Play Sand Set

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4.4
Little Chubby One Play Sand Set Image: Little Chubby One

The set consists of five pounds of non-toxic play sand in blue, green, pink, purple, orange, yellow, red, and white. With the help of plastic molds, you can create a seal life to develop an underwater adventure. The sand can cling together and hold the shape, letting you create beautiful art. Furthermore, the sand set offers sensory and tactile stimulation while helping children develop creative and motor skills.

Item Weight: 5 Pounds | Material: Cardboard,Plastic | Color: Red, Blue,Green,Orange,Pink,Purple,Red,White, White, Pink, Yellow, Orange, Green

Pros

  • Includes qualitative tray constructed of thick cardboard
  • Helps prevent tearing and ripping when playing
  • Cute and attractive set
  • Non-messy sand

Cons

  • Figurines are made of glass
  • Moldings are relatively thin

Our Reviewer's Experience

"Watching my children make various shapes and textures using the included molds and kinetic sand feels great. It constantly stimulates their imagination and inspires them to be more creative. Though it's not entirely mess-free, the vibrant appeal adds up to their fun."


10. Best Child-Friendly:Classic Sand & Play for Sandbox

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4.4
Classic Sand & Play for Sandbox Image: Classic Sand & Play

Premium, soft, and easy to mold, the sand has been grated, washed, and dried cautiously to ensure it is 100% safe and non-toxic. This child-safe play sand is ideal for early learning during outdoor and indoor play sessions. Inspiring imagination and creativity, the sand is for indoor arts and crafts, sand tables, and kid’s sandboxes. Moreover, this dry sand helps keep children mentally and physically engaged and active.

Material: Sand | Item Weight: 19.26 pounds | Product Dimensions: 14 x 12 x 4 inches

Pros

  • Stimulates hand-eye coordination
  • Adequate for sand tray therapy or sensory activities
  • Child-friendly for dry and wet use
  • Natural and safe
  • Clean sandbox sand

Cons

  • Could be extremely dry
  • Might be difficult to pack

Our Reviewer's Experience

"This sand's soft, fine, clean texture is just right for meeting my little one's sensory needs. It is also free of dust, which is a genuine perk for easy clean-up."


protip_icon Quick tip
You may add little water to the sand when it’s drying to ensure the sand lasts longer.

11. Best Organic:Shiny Stone Colorful Sand

With up to 40 vibrant sand colors, this collection offers a perfect fun-filled experience for terrarium sand, sand art, craft sand, and play sand. A 250g packed in a jar lets you seamlessly store the sand for future projects. The vibrant colored sandbox sand is UV-stable, non-clumping, and non-toxic; hence, safe for use and will not fade in the light. With no polymers, the sand offers endless craft and exciting timing.

Item Weight: 8.81 Ounces | Material: Stone | Color: Diamond Blue

Pros

  • Natural, organic, and kid-friendly
  • Non-clumping sandbox sand that flows easily
  • Well-packaged in a jar
  • Can endure direct heat and sunlight

Cons

  • Quantity could be less

Our Reviewer's Experience

"My toddler's sand collection is filled with these brightly colored sand in different colors. It feels fine and smooth, and the color doesn't fade under intense sun. All in all, it is worth considering for its quality."


*The prices provided in this article are based on the latest available information. However, they may vary due to changes in pricing by the seller and/or promotional offers.

How To Choose The Right Sand For Sandbox?

When buying sand for sandbox, here are a few things you should keep in mind.

  1. Type: Consider the one that matches your requirements. Whether natural sand, kinetic sand, or processed sand, know their qualities before moving ahead.
  2. Texture: The texture of the sand is divided into three options. Make sure the option you choose has a soft and smooth texture, is easier to clean, and doesn’t make any mess.
  3. Color: There are plenty of color options available, including purple, yellow, blue, green, and red. Choose the one that looks good to your eyes.

Frequently Asked Questions

1. How much sand would I need for my sandbox?

To figure out the sand volume for the sandbox, measure the width and length of the sandbox. If your sandbox is circular, measure its diameter. Decide on how deep you want the sand to settle. Accordingly, choose the right amount. Use the sandbox’s height, width, and length to figure out the volume (volume = length x width x height). For a circular sandbox, use the formula-volume = πr2h, where π is equal to 3.14, r is the radius, and h is the height of the sand.

2. How often should I change the sand in a sandbox?

Depending on how frequently your children use the sandbox, you can change the sand every one or two years.

3. Can I use mason sand in a sandbox?

Regular mason sand often contains dust and silica, both of which could potentially cause allergies.

4. What kind of sand should I put in a sandbox?

You should use sand that is carefully grated, washed, and refined. It should be free of dust and silica and have a smooth, soft texture.

5. Is beach sand safe for sandboxes?

Often, beach sand can contain many impurities, such as silica and other toxic substances not visible to the eye. Constant exposure to such sand could be unhealthy, especially for children.

6. What should I fill my sandbox with?

If you don’t fancy the regular tan-colored sand, you could go for white sand along with colorful accessories, such as molding and building tools.

7. Does play sand get moldy?

Prolonged exposure to moisture could increase the chances of mold build-up. It’s crucial to allow your sand and sandbox to dry thoroughly after playtime or if it gets wet.

Why Trust MomJunction?

Priti Bose primarily writes and reviews about children’s toys, and hence, she knows the likes and dislikes of children. In this post on the best sand for sandboxes, she tells you the benefits of sand play and the types of sand you should choose. Priti has also listed the pros and cons of each product to help you make an informed choice. Moreover, she has ensured that the best-selling sands listed here are non-toxic and safe for children.
Besides molding various shapes, you can teach your children to get engaged in playing with toys and trucks in the sand, drawing, and treasure hunting. The above list could help you choose the best sand for the sandbox.

Infographic: Why Should Your Child Indulge In Sand Play?

Sand play provides a tactile and imaginative experience, allowing children to explore and create in a sensory-rich environment. It fosters the child’s cognitive, physical, and emotional development, from building castles to digging and molding. Refer to the infographic below to discover why you should encourage your child to indulge in regular sand play at home.

Benefit Of Sand Play For A Child (infographic)

Illustration: Momjunction Design Team


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Priti Bose
Priti BoseMA (English)
Priti Bose is a poet, songwriter and blog writer. She did her masters in English, Public Relations and Advertising from Delhi University. Her creative skills and hunger for details make her do in-depth research on the topics she covers.

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