Play Sand and is it Safe for my Kids?

Sakrete often gets asked the question "is Play Sand safe for my kid(s)?" The answer is, if you are ok taking your kids to the beach, absolutely! Now if you wouldn’t take your kids to the beach you probably shouldn’t use Play Sand either. A bigger question might be, “how much play sand can be removed by one child’s bathing suit or clothes during one visit to the sandbox or beach.”

Getting serious, let’s talk about how Sakrete Natural Play Sand is made . Sakrete Natural Play Sand's mineral make up is silica, which is the same as any beach sand. It seems that recently sand has gotten a bad name due to the industrial applications it is used in. When using sand in industrial settings, such as for sand blasting sand these can be broken up into very fine particles that if one is exposed to and inhaled for a period of time may cause health problems.

This isn’t the case with Sakrete Natural Play Sand since most kids (hopefully) won’t be doing any sandblasting.

For those still a little concerned, you can always keep the sand slightly moist which will prevent dry sand from flying up into children’s faces. This still doesn’t stop my neighbor’s kids from eating it, but that’s whole different story.

As an additional tip: when you put the sand into your kid‘s sand box it’s also a good idea to keep it covered to keep out leaves and dirt, plus it also has the added benefit of keeping out the neighbor’s cat from doing the unmentionable.

Other Sakrete Play Sand Uses:

1. Ballast – Help weight down things from signs, fences, basketball poles, truck beds, etc.

2. Landscaping – Drainage, dry up wet areas

3. Traction – For icy steps and walks, which is much better for the concrete and the environment

4. Pavers - Can be used to fill the joints between pavers when the joints are at least 1/8” in width.

Applications Sakrete Play Sand Should Not Be Used:

1. Aquariums - A commonly asked question is whether Sakrete Natural Play Sand can be used for fish aquariums. For that application, a special manufactured sand is needed which won’t affect the pH level of the water.

2. Pool Filters - Typically pool filters require a certain size sand that is used and unfortunately Sakrete Natural Play Sand doesn’t meet those coarse sand size requirements.

The Sakrete Team



  • Lee-Technical Service

    Ryan, ours sands are mined from the ground in your local region. We do not mine and ship the for long distances. They are mined, washed, dried, and then bagged. All of our sands are all natural we do not have a man made sand.
  • Ryan

    Hi - Where do you harvest your sand from? Can you talk a little bit about how it is processed before it is bagged? Some kind of video illustrating this on your website would be great!
  • Lee-Technical Service

    Mel, the play sand can give you slip resistance when poured over an icy surface. We also recommend it for spreading over asphalt patches to keep from tracking materials, but it will not help the material setup.
  • mel Cook

    Can I use Play Sand to prevent slipping on ice or set asphalt?
  • Lee-Technical Service

    Cynthia, ours sands are mined from the ground and washed then bagged. All of our sands are all natural. As far as holding shape from a rake, I do not know. That would be something that you would have to try before you build the garden to see if it acts in the desired manner.
  • Cynthia

    We are building a zen garden for children. Is this sand non-toxic and free of chemicals? Also, when making designs in the sand would the sand hold the shape of the rake?
  • Lee-Technical Service

    Sni, it is neither. Ours sands are mined from the ground and washed then bagged. All of our sands are all natural. We do not have a man made sand in our product line.
  • Sni

    Is it washed beach sand or manufactured artificial sand?
  • Lee-Technial Service

    Dave, the Play Sand is a fine sand and can be used to fill in the joints of the pavers. However, I would still tamp the pavers either with a rubber hammer or a 2x4. This will help to consolidate the sand so that it fills the lower depths of the pavers.
  • Dave

    Is your natural play sand suitable as a fine grain sand to refill existing paver joints without using plate compactor? Not looking for polymeric sand as we'll seal both pavers and sand after installation.
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