If you are in a rush and want to skip ahead to our number one choice for silica cat litter, look no further than PetSafe ScoopFree Premium Crystal Cat Litter.
Whether you are a long-time or an aspiring cat parent, it goes without saying that you have to match your kitty’s affinity for hygiene.
A lot of cat parents recently started doing so by introducing crystal litter, which is relatively new, but very promising. Crystal litter claims to have better odor control than most other litters, to make it easier to clean and to be more environmentally friendly than traditional clay litter.
Is that true?
In this guide we’ll answer some of the most common questions about crystal litter such as:
- What is crystal cat litter?
- Is silica litter really easier to clean?
- Is crystal litter safe?
- Will my cat like crystal litter?
- What are the pros and cons of silica gel litter?
Finally, we’ll go through some of the best crystal litters that we could find to keep your feline friend clean and happy:
- PetSafe ScoopFree Non-Clumping Crystal Cat Litter – 3-Pack (also available on Chewy.com!)
- Fresh Step Crystals Premium Cat Litter (also available on Chewy.com!)
- Just the Crystals Longest Lasting Premium Crystal Cat Litter
- Ultra Pet Clumping Crystal Cat Litter (also available on Chewy.com!)
- Ultra Pet Pearls Micro crystals Cat Litter (also available on Chewy.com!)
What Is Crystal Cat Litter?
It’s undeniable that this type of litter is becoming popular among cat owners, hence the question: what exactly is it?
Crystal cat litter is mostly made of sodium silicate sand processed with oxygen and water (this is why it is also known as silica cat litter). This mixture creates crystals that can absorb around 40 times their weight of liquid.
You might have seen silica in the “Do not eat” silica packets you find in shoes and other products. Crystal cat litters are, however, specially formulated to be safe for your cat. Indeed, these crystals don’t contain crystalline silicate, which can be harmful to humans and cats.
This video explains what crystal litter is more in detail.
The crystals are exceptional at absorbing moisture and urine through their tiny pores. Some of this moisture evaporates, leaving the surface of the crystals dry.
The result is that silica litter is a great pick for cat owners who want the cleaning process to be as effortless as possible.
Why Go For Silica Cat Litter?
Many brands and reviewers swear by crystal cat litters. But what exactly fuels their confidence in these litters and how do they compare with traditional litters?
We all know cats are big on personal hygiene. Luckily, most crystal litters won’t stick to their paws and coats like other types do.
Dust Free and Low Tracking
Dust can cause respiratory issues to you or your beloved (cat). That’s why it’s crucial to go for litter with dust control features. The majority of crystal litters are 99.9% dust-free. Good news for you and your allergic buddy, right?
With crystal litter, your cat is less likely to track litter around the house. This is because the crystals are usually larger than clay litter, and less likely to get stuck under the paws. If you’re having issues with litter tracking, you should check out our full guides on non tracking litter and top entry litter boxes.
Excellent Odor Control
Crystal litter has granules that absorb and lock in moisture, slowing down bacteria growth, and preventing bad smell. If you want to check out non-silica litter with great odor control, you can check our full guide here.
Can Be Reused Over Longer Time
We can all agree that constantly replacing cat litter can be annoying. Crystal cat litter brands, however, promise longer use.
How? You might ask.
Crystal litter is capable to absorb more moisture than traditional clay litter, thus making it last longer. Check the manufacturer’s recommended duration while choosing any litter product.
To take full advantage of crystal litter’s absorbing capabilities it is advised to stir crystal litters daily. That’s because daily stirring will encourage the moisture to evaporate from the crystals.
Are all cat litters kind to the environment? No, but some are! According to Only Natural Pet Crystal litter tends to be better for the environment than clay litter. Here’s what they had to say:
Environmentally, silica crystal litters will biodegrade and are non-toxic, making them a better choice than clay.Only Natural Pet
Easy to carry
Carrying, pouring, and disposing of litter shouldn’t feel like going to the gym. The good news is that most crystal litters bags are lightweight, making them a great option for people who struggle with heavy litter bags.
If your grandma has a cat and you haven’t introduced her to crystal litter, what are you waiting for? She’ll be forever grateful!
But don’t let me stop you if you’re open to lifting weights and testing your strength. To each his own!
Clumping And Non-Clumping Crystal Litters
Most crystal litters in the market are non-clumping due to the way the granules work. Some even come with trays that can be easily disposed of after use, making litter scooping a thing of the past.
However, if you are used to clumping clay litter and like the clumping mechanism, you can still find crystal clumping cat litter. An example that we reviewed is Ultra Pet Cat Clumping Crystal Litter.
When Not To Pick Silica Gel Cat Litter
Even though crystal cat litter can be a great option, there are certain situations for which we’d advice to steer away from it.
If you have a young kitten
Silica gel on its own isn’t considered harmful. But, silica crystals can be harmful if ingested in large doses.
Young kittens are curious and may be quick to put anything in their mouth. It’s thus not the best idea to use them on these little creatures. The same is true for clumping clay litter of course. If ingested it may expand in the kitten’s stomach creating several issues.
If you do have a young kitten you should stick with flushable cat litter such as the Purina Yesterday’s News Unscented Paper Cat Litter.
Best Crystal Cat Litter on the market
Each package of this product comes with three trays pre-filled with premium blue crystal litter.
You can just load one litter tray in the box and you are good to go. This crystal litter works best with self-cleaning Petsafe Scoopfree premium litter boxes such as this one, but this shouldn’t discourage you if you have an ordinary one. It works all the same, you can even get the same litter in convenient 4.5lbs bags here.
Also, guess what?? The days of scooping, cleaning, or refilling will be a thing of the past. All you have to do is dispose of used trays and load a new one in the litter box. Convenient, right??
Not to forget, the trays are waterproof with lining to protect against leakage keeping the litter box as new as ever. If you don’t want to get the disposable trays you can still get the same litter in convenient 4.5 lbs bags here. This litter comes in three versions, an unscented one, a lavender scent, and a “light fresh” scent.
|✔️ Convenient portions||❌ Pools of urine at the bottom if it becomes too saturated|
|✔️ Impressive odor control|
|✔️ Easy convenient clean up|
|✔️ Excellent leak protection|
|✔️ 99.9% dust free|
Fresh Step has a wide range of products, but you got to love their Crystal litters.
It uses Ammonia Block Technology to deactivate pesky enzymes and control bacterial growth. According to Fresh Step, their Crystals absorb urine and eliminate odors 5X faster than clay litters.
While they guarantee thirty days of unrivaled freshness, it is advisable to change litter after two or three weeks for best results. The bag that weighs 8lb is equivalent to a 28lb bag of clay cat litter. How light is that?
|✔️ Lightweight (great for grandma)||❌ Non-biodegradable|
|✔️ Easy clean up||❌ Dust control could be better|
|✔️ Cost-effective||❌ It may form a sludge that sticks to the litter box if not stirred daily|
|✔️ Good for mechanical litter boxes|
As the name suggests, it’s all about the crystals! This product comes as a package of two 4.4lb bags, making it easy to pour and replace when needed.
Also this crystal litter brand pledges 5X better odor control than clay litters. Think that’s all?
Just the Crystals proudly declares their product as having the highest absorbency of any crystal cat litter in the market. Does it get better than that? Um, yes! The product was recognized by Animal Wellness as a “Superior product” for promoting the well-being of animals.
|✔️ Fragrance free||❌ Odor and dust control could be better|
|✔️ Convenient pre-measured packaging|
|✔️ 99.9% dust free|
Who said all the best crystal litters have to be non-clumping?
Admittedly, finding a crystal litter that clumps can be tasking. This one, however, stands out. It may not have as many reviews, considering the rarity of such a product, but its features are enough to woo you.
The dust-free, multi-color crystals are made from high quality Silica Gel that promise to be gentle to even the most sensitive cat’s paws. You only need to scoop the litter twice a week according to the company.
|✔️ Real soft on the paws||❌ More tracking than most crystal litters|
|✔️ High absorbency||❌ Odor control could be better|
|✔️ Urine is tightly clumped|
|✔️ Virtually dust-free|
Another one from Ultra Pet. This product comes in a 5lb bag with two options. The microcrystal variation comes in a blue bag, while the pearls are in a pink package.
The latter costs more and also has finer particles.
Both feature very soft and small crystal granules that are gentle on your cat’s paws.
The litter has a surface with thousands of multi-pores that ensure efficient absorption of urine. It also works fast to dehydrate feces and remove odors.
|✔️ Super absorbent||❌ Can get dusty|
|✔️ Excellent odor control||❌ More tracking than most crystal litters|
|✔️ Easy clean-up|
|✔️ Small beads are soft on cat’s paws|
Folks, there you have it – a review of some award-worthy crystal cat litters.
Which stood out for me, you may ask? It was a tight race, but my clear winner is the PetSafe ScoopFree Premium Crystal Cat Litter. As a reminder, you can even get the same litter in convenient 4.5lbs bags here.
First off, I find it cool that it comes in three disposable trays. Cleanup can’t get any easier. It can also be used with all types of litter boxes, be it the self-cleaning ones or the ordinary.Not to forget, PetSafe is a notable leader in the pet world, with this specific product having plenty of customer reviews.
Have fun as you explore litters that the crystal world has to offer.
Always go for what works for you and pet dearest.
Remember, if kitty doesn’t love, it’s not worth it!