Note: This post contains affiliate links. You may read my disclosure here.

We were given a tub of Play Visions Sands Alive! Castles to play with and review for you on the blog. When the box arrived with the tub of sand my daughter immediately spotted it because of its bright colors and a fun image and asked me what it is.

I wasn’t ready to give it to them to play with yet, so I said, “Oh it’s nothing,” and tried to set it aside. She went on to continue to ask me about it several times daily for about a week, so finally I decided it was time to let them play with it.

After about a week of anticipation my kids were thrilled! However, I didn’t bother to read the instructions before I told them we could play with it. When I opened the tub, I read the instructions and it says to remove the sand from the plastic bag and let it breathe for a few hours before using…whomp, whomp, whomp.

Look but don’t touch, yet! 😉

The kids were so excited to play with it, and I had to tell them we had to wait a little longer before we could play. I successfully distracted them by having them help me in the garden and eat lunch, and then our Sands Alive! was ready to be played with!

Ready, set, play!

The promotional info said this is all the fun of sand without the mess. It’s non-toxic, anti-bacterial, won’t stain and it’s easy to pickup off of floors and carpets. But I was still a little skeptical so I decided to have the kids play with it outside on our back patio, and that way if the sand made a mess I could sweep it up off the patio into the grass.

The Sands Alive! did not disappoint my kids! It was soft and squishy and they enjoyed the feel of it in their hands. They used the included molds to help them shape sand castles. We turned it into a STEM activity by trying to see who could build the castles the tallest. They learned that making a larger and wider base helped them to build a taller castle.

Building the sand castle foundation

I was glad they had a fun, entertaining, engaging, and STEM related-activity to keep them busy all afternoon. And it really wasn’t too messy. I wouldn’t mind them using this inside. I would say the texture and mess it made was much more similar to what you would expect from using play-dough than sand. It sticks a little and small pieces fall out, but can be easily cleaned up.

Sand castle building pros!

I was graciously given an extra tub of Sands Alive! to giveaway to a blog reader on my Instagram account! If you’re interested in entering to win a tub of Sands Alive! please head over to my @engineering_emily Instagram account for all the details on how to enter to win!

This is the bucket I will be giving away on Instagram!

Also, if you don’t win my giveaway, but still want to get Play Visions Sands Alive! for your kids you can find it on Amazon.

Have you tried Sands Alive! or a similar product with your kids? What did you think of it?


Some of the links below are affiliate links, which means that if you click on a product link I may receive compensation at no additional cost to you. I only link to products and pages I personally use and highly recommend. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. Thank you for your support!

You have Successfully Subscribed!