10 Best Places to Buy Sand for Sandboxes (Colored, Play, etc)

Filling a new sandbox with bags of sand.

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A sandbox can be a great addition to a backyard playground set, and it can be a fun and creative way for kids to burn off some energy.

There are several places, both in-store and online, where you can buy sand in quantities needed for a home sandbox.

Below, we’ve compiled the list of places to buy sand, what types of sand they offer, and general price ranges.

How Much Sand Should You Buy?

The amount of sand you need to purchase will vary depending on the volume of your sandbox.

In general, for a small outdoor sandbox, you’ll likely need a few hundred pounds of sand. For larger sizes or odd shapes and sizes, Sandtastik offers a helpful sandbox calculator to help you calculate the exact amount you need.

Depending on the type of sand you choose, you can expect to spend as little as $20 or less to fill up your small sandbox, or nearly $500 to fill up the same sized box with play sand.

Health Concerns Related to Play Sand

In the process of searching for play sand, you may come across some alarming health concerns related to sand. Note that all play sand is child-friendly in that it has been thoroughly washed.

However, it often will still contain quartz sand grains (also known as crystalline silica), which is the same as what is found in any beach sand. Silica can have potentially detrimental effects if inhaled in excess.

Keep in mind that warnings about these effects are typically meant for people like industrial workers who experience prolonged daily exposure for years — not short periods of play in a small sandbox.

To mitigate any potential danger, some play sand brands will advise that you keep the sand damp, which helps prevent children from breathing in dust or bits of silica from the sand.

Other brands remove all silica and quartz, which dramatically increases the price of the product.

If you have concerns about the brand of sand you’re considering, note that the state of California requires health warning labels on sand. If a bag of sand says “Not labeled for sand in California,” you may want to avoid that brand.

What We Recommend

If you’re looking for the convenience of online ordering, fast delivery, as well as a wide range of sand types (including silica-free) and prices, Amazon is always a good option for finding sand for your sandbox.

However, if you’re looking for the cheapest options for standard play sand that you can find online or in-store, consider places like The Home Depot or Walmart. Keep in mind, though, that these inexpensive play sand brands will likely contain silica.

Places to Buy Play Sand

You can buy play sand at the following stores, ordered starting with the overall best options:

Amazon logo


The Home Depot logo

The Home Depot

Walmart logo


Lowes logo


Ace Hardware logo

Ace Hardware

Sears logo


Kmart logo


Menards logo


Sandtastik logo


Safe Sand Company logo

The Safe Sand Company

Places That Don’t Sell Sand

In the course of our research, we found that the following retailers don’t sell sand for sandboxes:

  • BJ’s Wholesale Club
  • Costco
  • Dollar General
  • Dollar Tree
  • Family Dollar
  • Publix
  • Supervalu
  • Target

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