Editor's Choice - Our Favorite SubstrateSource Aquarium Gravel

1. SubstrateSource Natural Lava Gravel - 2 Pounds

User Ratings: 68 3

SubstrateSource NR0120-2 First Impressions

"It's what I needed."

The color of the gravel makes the blue in my Tetra's and Gourami's pop. I baught a 5 gallon tank and i had to buy 2 packs. Wonderful mixture of color with the black stone. I just wanted to post a picture so you can see how much comes in a pack. Plenty of rock for my 5 gal aquarium. I used this for a small aquarium with 2 goldfish and it worked great! The pebbles are a perfect size for 30+ gallon tanks.

  • SubstrateSource Natural Lava Gravel - 2 Pounds
  • All natural lava substrate.
  • Plants love it.
  • Screened, washed, and kiln dried.
  • Highly porous.
  • Manufacture: SubstrateSource
  • Item Weight: 2.49 Pounds
  • Editor's Impressions Of The SubstrateSource NR0120-2
  • Quality [star rating='4.7']
  • Value For Money [star rating='3.3']
  • Affordability [star rating='4.1']

SubstrateSource NR0120-2 Final Thoughts

"There is a simple remedy."

It has lovely colors and I will be using ONLY this gravel in the future. The pebbles are a perfect size for 30+ gallon tanks. I opened the bag, dumped it in a bowl and filled it with water. I would buy again if the price didn't double from last time. Really like the coloring of them as well. I really love this natural gravel, really makes my 20g High look natural! I'd recommend but just be wary of debris.

Overall Score
4.3

[star rating="4.3"]
(47 Points)

2. Pure Water Pebbles Nature's Ocean Aquarium Gravel Black Beauty Gravel 5-lb

User Ratings: 35

Pure Water Pebbles First Impressions

"Look great."

Only issue is that it did have a hole in the bag but nothing too horrible. Very random shapes and colors that blend well. Removed pebbles and refilled for the 3rd time. I WOULD recommend buying this item! Color is good contrast to the Beta. The 50 pound bag was jus barely enough for my 55 gallon tank! The color mixture with the darker colors in it does that very well.

  • Pure Water Pebbles Nature's Ocean Aquarium Gravel Black Beauty Gravel 5-lb
  • Natural Aquarium Gravel
  • 100% Acrylic Coating
  • Will not alter the chemistry of your aquarium water
  • Non-toxic
  • Colorfast
  • Manufacture: Nature's Ocean
  • Editor's Impressions Of The Pure Water Pebbles
  • Quality [star rating='4.9']
  • Value For Money [star rating='3.9']
  • Affordability [star rating='4.2']

Pure Water Pebbles Final Thoughts

"Look great."

It's a gemstone quality gravel, not the topfin crap from petsmart. I envisioned the bag being bigger since I ordered a 50lbs. Overall I am happy with the gravel. It gives a very natural riverbed look to the aquarium. I think the pink makes my aquarium stand out and gives it a cute little look. It worked really well and still allowed new stems to pop through. Purchased 9 bags of this for a new 180 gallon aquarium.

Overall Score
4.1

[star rating="4.1"]
(5 Points)

3. Pure Water Pebbles Aquarium Gravel, 25-Pound, Black Beauty Pebble Mix

User Ratings: 37

Pure Water Pebbles 70501 First Impressions

"Purchased this for my 1."

Aside from the size, the appearance of this gravel is what stands out the most. I used this for a small aquarium with 2 goldfish and it worked great! Works great in my daughter aquarium. I do not own glofish nor a glofish tank. I'm accenting with multicolored glass rocks to accent. The 50 pound bag was jus barely enough for my 55 gallon tank! It looks great and didn't change anything about the water.

  • Pure Water Pebbles Aquarium Gravel, 25-Pound, Black Beauty Pebble Mix
  • Pure Water Pebbles Premium Freshwater Substrates
  • Natural Decorative Gravel
  • 100% Acrylic Coating, Colorfast
  • Non-toxic, will not alter the chemistry of your aquarium water
  • Recommended Uses: Fresh & Saltwater Aquariums, Ponds, Terrariums, Gardens, Potted Plants, Vases, Ash Trays, Crafts & Hobbies
  • Manufacture: WORLD WIDE IMPORTS ENT., INC.
  • Product Dimensions: 21.5 x 12 x 2 inches; 25 Pounds
  • Editor's Impressions Of The Pure Water Pebbles 70501
  • Quality [star rating='3.5']
  • Value For Money [star rating='3.5']
  • Affordability [star rating='4.4']

Pure Water Pebbles 70501 Final Thoughts

"Hope this helps!"

Wonderful mixture of color with the black stone. Snails and fish dont seem to mind the switch from sand. I used this for a small aquarium with 2 goldfish and it worked great! The smooth and small pebbles are great for people keeping corycats. Just be patient and realize that it's going to take a while to rinse it. Worked great for my succulent gardens. It was easy to clean and looks great in my bamboo glass vases!

Overall Score
4.1

[star rating="4.1"]
(5 Points)

4. 1/4" Granite Mini Pea Gravel, 5lb Bag - Decorative Natural granitic Gneiss Gravel for Aquariums, Lan...

User Ratings: 71 3

Maynooth Natural Granite First Impressions

"I do not own fish."

The little package of clarifier included is not nearly enough. I'll definitely use this gravel again the next time I start a new tank. I was scared to buy it after the reviews I read about it killing their fish. Obviously required a lot of rinsing. The little package of clarifier included is not nearly enough. So will just see if color stays-God willing! I didn't even need the water clarifier, and I found it in the bag.

  • 1/4" Granite Mini Pea Gravel, 5lb Bag - Decorative Natural granitic Gneiss Gravel for Aquariums, Landscaping, Vase Fillers, Plants, Fairy Gardens, Bonsai.
  • 100% granitic gneiss (no limestone!)
  • Screened and spray-washed with water only (natural fine dust from parent stone is present in bag - rinse before use)
  • 1/4 inch diameter rounded gravel
  • Suitable for aquariums, planters, terrariums, and more
  • Product of Canada
  • Manufacture: Maynooth Natural Granite
  • Item Weight: 4.99 pounds
  • Editor's Impressions Of The Maynooth Natural Granite
  • Quality [star rating='4.3']
  • Value For Money [star rating='5']
  • Affordability [star rating='3.6']

Maynooth Natural Granite Final Thoughts

"It is quite lovely."

Snails and fish dont seem to mind the switch from sand. They served their purpose, but had to be the dirtiest rocks I have ordered. I just wanted to post a picture so you can see how much comes in a pack. For reference, my tank is a 20 gallon tall tank. The rock arrived quickly and several days before projected. Color is good contrast to the Beta. The 50 pound bag was jus barely enough for my 55 gallon tank!

Overall Score
4.5

[star rating="4.5"]
(775 Points)

5. Pure Water Pebbles Nature's Ocean Aquarium Gravel Carolina River Gems Gravel 5lb Bag

User Ratings: 80

Pure Water Pebbles First Impressions

"Be prepared!"

I filled with filter water ad let sit for a day before relocate fish. Not sure why there is so much bad feedback for this. A little bigger than what I wanted but I still used it. Removed pebbles and refilled for the 3rd time. I am disappointed that there seems to be nothing special about this gravel. Perfect for the corydoras, pleasing to the eye. I filled with filter water ad let sit for a day before relocate fish.

  • Pure Water Pebbles Nature's Ocean Aquarium Gravel Carolina River Gems Gravel 5lb Bag
  • Natural Aquarium Gravel
  • 100% Acrylic Coating
  • Will not alter the chemistry of your aquarium water
  • Non-toxic
  • Colorfast
  • Manufacture: Nature's Ocean
  • Editor's Impressions Of The Pure Water Pebbles
  • Quality [star rating='5']
  • Value For Money [star rating='4.1']
  • Affordability [star rating='4.5']

Pure Water Pebbles Final Thoughts

"I would buy this again."

I envisioned the bag being bigger since I ordered a 50lbs. They are rocks, what more do you need. I have a 90 gallon aquarium with a footprint of 18 by 48 inches. The color mixture with the darker colors in it does that very well. Aside from the size, the appearance of this gravel is what stands out the most. I recommend doing it in smaller portions. I baught a 5 gallon tank and i had to buy 2 packs.

Overall Score
4.7

[star rating="4.7"]
(22 Points)

6. Royal Sapphire Aquarium Gravel River Rock - Natural Polished Decorative Gravel, Small Decorative Peb...

User Ratings: 38 28

Royal Sapphire First Impressions

"Great quality."

Love the vibrant neon colors mixed in with the black gravel. Like everyone else says wash it before putting it in your tank. I've ordered their midnight pearl color and it is beautiful too. This was the cheapest DIY project with a big wow factor. Arrived in 8 sealed plastic bags inside one Priority box. Secondly the gravels colour looks enhanced under a bright led light. Very random shapes and colors that blend well.

  • Royal Sapphire Aquarium Gravel River Rock - Natural Polished Decorative Gravel, Small Decorative Pebbles, Mixed Color Stones,for Aquariums, Landscaping, Vase Fillers 4.5 Pounds
  • Pebbles Decorative Stones Aquarium Gravel :Natural Stones,aquarium gravel ,river rocks,fish tank gravel,succulent soil ,paperwhite bulbs, potting soil,succulent soil mix,cactus soil,potting soil for indoor plants,vase filler,terrarium supplies.(rocks are natural and as a result some may be broken or out of shape, oval or round, thick or thin)
  • Natural Polished Gravel:This river rocks are natural lightly polished for smooth effect, comes in a variety of natural colors, Resists fading for long-lasting beauty. The color of this river rock is natural so it may include a variety of different shades of browns, whites and black rocks.you can add beauty to all your needs
  • An alternative to mulch: Use indoors or outdoors,Pebble mulch in interior or exterior garden beds, helps soil retain moisture, provides good drainage, round and soft easy on the feet as there are no sharp edges. They are long lasting and will not deteriorate like mulch does.
  • Add an extra beautiful: in flower arrangements, walkways, water features, exposed aggregate flooring or walls, around swimming pools it could also be used to as an accent to an aquariums, water gardens, ponds, and terrariums. Add an extra beauty in your garden or just outside your house. This is a perfect home decor and a creative interior and exterior design ,helps you keep clean and nice all of your decoration places.
  • Manufacture: Royal Sapphire
  • Item Weight: 2 pounds
  • Editor's Impressions Of The Royal Sapphire
  • Quality [star rating='3']
  • Value For Money [star rating='3.2']
  • Affordability [star rating='3.4']

Royal Sapphire Final Thoughts

"Just as described."

So if you are looking for bigger size, this is not it. But the gravel itself is nice quality and adds interest to tanks. The rocks are REALLY dirty, and contain random debris. I've been using that for a few months now with my betta. Don't own a blacklight so can't tell if it glows or not. Really just rinsed a little and ready to go. I used these to put on top of soil if my pot plants.

Overall Score
3.1

[star rating="3.1"]
(13 Points)

7. GloFish Accent Gravel for Aquariums, Various Colors & Types

User Ratings: 66 6

GloFish 29020 First Impressions

"Nice gravel."

This is the real deal mother earth approx. I have bought 2 bags of this gravel. It's a gemstone quality gravel, not the topfin crap from petsmart. Don't even waste your time adding it to your tank. One bag was open and had emptied into the box. I recommend doing it in smaller portions. For my purpose, they work perfectly, for an aquarium, they might need a quick rinse.

  • GloFish Accent Gravel for Aquariums, Various Colors & Types
  • Blue, green and clear pebbles accent gravel
  • colorful and vibrant pebbles to add to your existing aquarium gravel
  • Add pops of color to your aquarium floor
  • Enhances your GloFish aquarium environment
  • Manufacture: GloFish
  • Product Dimensions: 4.13 x 1.5 x 5.63 inches; 2.75 Ounces
  • Editor's Impressions Of The GloFish 29020
  • Quality [star rating='4.4']
  • Value For Money [star rating='4.8']
  • Affordability [star rating='4.7']

GloFish 29020 Final Thoughts

"A few minutes."

I use a hybrid of the Walstad Method, and this stuff is perfect. Fast delivery and item true to description. I WOULD recommend buying this item! The glow is pretty minimal but it still looks nice. The smooth and small pebbles are great for people keeping corycats. This is perfect for a 2 gallon tank that also has some acrylic gems. I actually used this on the top of my potted plants to keep gnats away.

Overall Score
4.3

[star rating="4.3"]
(974 Points)

8. Spectrastone Special Green Aquarium Gravel for Freshwater Aquariums, 25-Pound Bag

User Ratings: 81 8

Spectrastone 40703 First Impressions

"Nice rocks for my BioOrb."

Really just rinsed a little and ready to go. I recommend doing it in smaller portions. For reference, my tank is a 20 gallon tall tank. All substraight needs to be thoroughly rinsed before use. Arrived in 8 sealed plastic bags inside one Priority box. Purchased 9 bags of this for a new 180 gallon aquarium. I did rinse it off before putting it in the aquarium.

  • Spectrastone Special Green Aquarium Gravel for Freshwater Aquariums, 25-Pound Bag
  • Will not affect PH
  • Safe for use in freshwater aquariums
  • Non-Toxic coating
  • Manufacture: Estes Gravel Products
  • Product Dimensions: 18.75 x 9 x 2 inches; 25 Pounds
  • Editor's Impressions Of The Spectrastone 40703
  • Quality [star rating='3.8']
  • Value For Money [star rating='5']
  • Affordability [star rating='5']

Spectrastone 40703 Final Thoughts

"But it was horrible."

Plenty of rock for my 5 gal aquarium. I filled with filter water ad let sit for a day before relocate fish. Everyone ask where did i get that color. I bought two bags for my 55 gallon. Works great in my daughter aquarium. The rocks are REALLY dirty, and contain random debris. They're like large pebbles that are the size of your pinky-nail.

Overall Score
4.6

[star rating="4.6"]
(24 Points)

9. 3/8" Granite Pea Gravel, 5lb Bag - Decorative Natural granitic Gneiss Gravel for Aquariums, Landscap...

User Ratings: 69 4

Maynooth Natural Granite First Impressions

"Purchased this for my 1."

Just be patient and realize that it's going to take a while to rinse it. I wished I would have bought a few more so It would be deeper in my tank. I've been using that for a few months now with my betta. Water became with film like on top and lots of little bubbles on every surface. Like everyone else says wash it before putting it in your tank. I used these to put on top of soil if my pot plants. Overall I am very pleased with my purchase and would suggest this product to others.

  • 3/8" Granite Pea Gravel, 5lb Bag - Decorative Natural granitic Gneiss Gravel for Aquariums, Landscaping, Vase Fillers, Plants, Fairy Gardens, Bonsai.
  • 100% granitic gneiss (no limestone!)
  • Screened and spray-washed with water only (natural fine dust from parent stone is present in bag - rinse before use)
  • 3/8 inch diameter rounded gravel
  • Suitable for aquariums, planters, terrariums, and more
  • Product of Canada
  • Manufacture: Maynooth Natural Granite
  • Item Weight: 4.79 pounds
  • Editor's Impressions Of The Maynooth Natural Granite
  • Quality [star rating='5']
  • Value For Money [star rating='4.4']
  • Affordability [star rating='5']

Maynooth Natural Granite Final Thoughts

"Beautiful gravel."

It's a gemstone quality gravel, not the topfin crap from petsmart. Don't use any soaps or anything else. Very random shapes and colors that blend well. All n all, very happy with the purchase. 5 inches of gravel, so you could use more or less depending on tank size. Wouldn't have any other substrate for my axolotl. Worked great for my succulent gardens.

Overall Score
4.4

[star rating="4.4"]
(136 Points)

10. Pure Water Pebbles Aquarium Gravel, 25-Pound, Pastel Blue Frost

Pure Water Pebbles 70401 First Impressions

"Makes my fish tank glow."

I opened the bag, dumped it in a bowl and filled it with water. It was easy to clean and looks great in my bamboo glass vases! So if you are looking for bigger size, this is not it. Colors are exactly as shown on the screen- at least on my monitor. So will just see if color stays-God willing! Snails and fish dont seem to mind the switch from sand. We bought this for a glo fish tank.

  • Pure Water Pebbles Aquarium Gravel, 25-Pound, Pastel Blue Frost
  • Pure Water Pebbles Premium Freshwater Substrates
  • Natural Decorative Gravel
  • 100% Acrylic Coating, Colorfast
  • Non-toxic, will not alter the chemistry of your aquarium water
  • Recommended Uses: Fresh & Saltwater Aquariums, Ponds, Terrariums, Gardens, Potted Plants, Vases, Ash Trays, Crafts & Hobbies
  • Manufacture: WORLD WIDE IMPORTS ENT., INC.
  • Product Dimensions: 21.5 x 12 x 2 inches; 25 Pounds
  • Editor's Impressions Of The Pure Water Pebbles 70401
  • Quality [star rating='4.7']
  • Value For Money [star rating='5']
  • Affordability [star rating='4.2']

Pure Water Pebbles 70401 Final Thoughts

"Worked out great for me."

I've been using that for a few months now with my betta. I just wanted to post a picture so you can see how much comes in a pack. I'd recommend but just be wary of debris. I have bought 2 bags of this gravel. Needs more plants but it makes the colors of the fish and other decor really pop. Out of the bag there is an amazing amount of dust. I opened the bag, dumped it in a bowl and filled it with water.

Overall Score
5.0

[star rating="5"]
(1 Points)

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