Sand dollars are very attractive and they mainly come with white shells. The stunning star shape is another reason for the attractiveness. It is important to know how to preserve them.

Easy Ways to Preserve Sand Dollars

Everyone wants to preserve the sand dollars as a keepsake or to decorate their home. So, here are few tips to follow for preserving sand dollars.


Cleaning the sand dollars is the initial step and clean them thoroughly and free them from excess sand. You can do this easily by soaking them in the freshwater for a couple of hours. When they get discolored, change the water, for more see here YouTube video.


Everyone wants to make the sand dollars in white color and to get this color, you have to soak them in bleach and water solution. So, make that ratio 1:3. You have to soak the sand dollars for a few minutes in that solution and if you want to do this naturally, you can keep the sand dollar under the sun rays and they will become white in a few days.


Painting is the crucial step for preserving the sand dollar and you have to prepare a mixture of white glue and water and maintain the ratio 1:1. After doing this, you can apply that as a solution on the sand dollar.

Easy Way to Harden the Sand Dollars

If you want to harden the sand dollars, make sure that they are clean, dry, and bleached.

  • Properly make the solution of white glue and water and stir well. And, properly verify whether the mixture is properly combined.
  • Use a properly cleaned sponge dipped in the glue solution and now covers the entire surface of the sand dollar in the mixture.
  • After dipping them rightly, now pick out the sand dollars and dry them under direct sunlight.
  • You can use these sand dollars for craft projects because they are very attractive.

Are You Allowed to Keep Sand Dollars?

There are no federal laws available to prosecute the sand dollar collectors. So, on humanitarian grounds, there are a number of people who request that, if the sand dollar is alive on the beach, you shouldn’t eliminate that. So, in this way, some people leave alive sand dollars on the beach and you are allowed to keep the sand dollars in your home as a decorative product and you can easily decorate your home with these aqua creatures.

How to Preserve Sand Dollars without Bleach?

If you want to preserve the sand dollars without bleach, it is important to follow the right steps.

  • Fill a bucket with clean fresh water and dip the sand dollar shells in the bucket and allow them to soak for a few hours.
  • In a few hours, the water in the bucket will change its previous color and smell bad.
  • Drain the water and fill the bucket with fresh water. You should continue this process until the color of the water remains unchanged.
  • Soaking the shells in the freshwater after collecting them from beaches will help you to prevent decay.
  • After finishing this process and washing them thoroughly, now dry them under the sunshine. In a few days, your shell is ready to decorate. There is no bleaching needed.

Best Way to Preserve Sand Dollars

Collect the sand dollars and quickly soak them in the freshwater. After a few times, the water will change its color to brown and after a few times, it also comes with an odd smell.

  • After waiting a few minutes, you have to flush the water out of the bucket and pour fresh water into it. Continue this process for several times till the sand dollars stop polluting the water.
  • And, then prepare a solution mixing bleach and water. Dip all the washed sand dollars into the solution for 1-15 minutes. So, remove the sand dollars from the bleach and rinse properly with fresh water and dry them under the direct sun rays.

How Long do Sand Dollars Take to Dry Out?

If someone wants to know, how much time do sand dollars take to dry out, the answer will be depending on the sunshine. The bright sunshine, the lesser time it’ll take to dry. In this way, it will be very easy to get your anticipated sand dollars that will be perfect to decorate the home. You can also make some gift items to present to your friend.


  • When you are collecting the sand dollars from the beach, make sure that you are dipping them into the freshwater as soon as possible. So, you can easily wash them and the bad odor will be minimal.
  • Bleaching is absolutely necessary to preserve the sand dollars and to get the shining. So, never skip bleaching.
  • While you are washing, you should use a brush by which you can easily open the holes and make the sand dollars free from sand and algae.

How do you harden sand dollars?

Prepare a mixture of bleach and water to soak the sand dollars in. Make the mixture with 3 parts water to every 1 part bleach. Pour the mixture into a bucket or dish and soak the sand dollars in it for around 3 minutes. Sand dollars get bleached naturally by the sun when they wash up on shore.

How long do you soak sand dollars in bleach?

2. Bleach: if you would like the sand dollars to appear whiter, soak them in a bleach and water solution – something around 1:3 – for just a few minutes as the bleach will begin to dissolve the sand dollar.

Can you keep sand dollars?

In most states taking a live sand dollar is illegal, but laws vary about collecting a deceased one, so check for signs at the beach or ask an employee. When they are alive, sand dollars secrete echinochrome, a harmless substance that will turn your skin yellow. Hold a sand dollar in your hand for a minute.

What is inside a sand dollar?

This shell is called a test and is the endoskeleton of a sand dollar, a burrowing sea urchin. The shell is left behind when the sand dollar dies and its velvety spines fall off to reveal a smooth case underneath. A sand dollar’s body has five jaw sections, 50 calcified skeletal elements, and 60 muscles.

How do you tell how old a sand dollar is?

Scientists can age a sand dollar by counting the growth rings on the plates of the exoskeleton. Sand dollars usually live six to 10 years.

Are sand dollars worth money?

Like everything else, they are worth whatever you can get someone to pay. Someone with a salt water aquarium might pay something for a living one, perhaps $5 to $15. Now let’s look at the highest amount of sand dollars that people ever put on them.

Is finding a sand dollar good luck?

Any beachcomber who finds Sand Dollars along their stroll considers it a lucky omen! They aren’t likely to be found on many beaches, but there are several spots around the United States where you’ll find them, including one of my favorites, Wingaersheek Beach, in Gloucester, Massachusetts.

Are Sand Dollars hard to find?

Sand dollars are likely to ride a low tide right to shore. High tides create choppy waters and it’s hard to find them.

Are Sand Dollars easy to find?

Sand dollars live on sandy or muddy flat areas of the ocean floor in shallow water near land. Beachcombers are most likely to find sand dollars at low tide, especially after a storm. The sun-bleached shells will be extremely fragile and will crumble or break easily.

What is the best time to find sand dollars?

When is the Best Time to Find Sand Dollars

The best time to head out to the beach to find sand dollars is at the early morning low tide. It’s possible to find them in the afternoon at low tide but typically you have better luck in the morning.

What Beach has the most sand dollars?

Tigertail Beach in Florida is located at 430 Hernando Dr., Marco Island, FL 34145. Open every day from 8 a.m. to sunset, you can explore the beach year-round. To learn more about Tigertail Beach, visit the website.

What is the largest sand dollar ever found?

The largest sand dollar on record measures 5.826 inches at its smallest diameter and 6.299 inches at its largest, according to Guinness World Records.

Are Sand Dollars rare?

The sand dollar is not currently listed as an endangered species.

How much does a sand dollar weigh?

Sand Dollar
Kingdom Animalia
Weight < 1 Ounce (< 30 g)
Lifespan 6-10 years
Conservation Status Low Risk/Near Threatened
Preferred Habitat Sandy marine benthic
1 jan. 2021

How do you tell if a sand dollar is alive or deceased?

So how can you tell if the sand dollar is still alive? If you turn it upside down and see those tiny spines — and they’re still moving — it’s definitely alive. Those spines fall off quickly after the sand dollar dies, according to the Sanibel Sea School.

What are the major predators of sand dollars?

Predators of the sand dollar are the fish species cod, flounder, sheepshead and haddock. These fish will prey on sand dollars even through their tough exterior. Sand dollars have spines on their bodies that help them to move around the ocean floor.