How to Choose the Right Sandpaper for Your Project

Your Guide to buying the best Sandpaper


Sandpaper is an essential tool for any woodworker, painter, or craftsman. Whether you’re working on a project at home or in a professional setting, having the right sandpaper can make the job go much smoother and easier. This buying guide will provide you with the information you need to make an informed decision when it comes to purchasing the right sandpaper for your specific project. From grit size to paper type, this guide will serve as an overview of all the necessary information you need to make sure you get the job done effectively.

Key features

  • Grit: The grit size of the sandpaper is important to consider, as it determines the coarseness of the sandpaper. A lower grit size is coarser with larger particles, while a higher grit size is finer with smaller particles.
  • Backing: The backing of the sandpaper refers to the material it is made from. Different backings have different characteristics, so shoppers should choose a backing that best suits their needs.
  • Size: Sandpaper is available in many sizes, and shoppers should choose one that fits the size of the project they are working on. For example, larger projects may require larger sandpaper.
  • Type: Sandpaper is available in many types, and shoppers should choose one that best suits their needs. The different types include standard, waterproof, and stearated sandpaper.

See the most popular Sandpaper on Amazon

Important considerations


  • Versatility: Sandpaper is widely available in many sizes, grits, and materials, making it a versatile choice for a variety of jobs.
  • Efficiency: Sandpaper is an efficient way to make surfaces smoother, as it quickly removes material from the surface it is applied to.
  • Ease of Use: Sandpaper is very easy to use, as it typically only requires a few strokes to get the desired result.
  • Cost: Sandpaper is an affordable option for most tasks, with a wide variety of grades available at a variety of price points.
  • Durability: Sandpaper is typically very durable, with some grades able to withstand multiple uses and reuse.


  • Grit - Sandpaper comes in a variety of grits, from very coarse to very fine. Buyers should be sure to choose the right grit for their project, as it can be difficult to tell which grit will be the best for a given task.
  • Cost - Sandpaper can be somewhat expensive, depending on the brand and grit. Buyers should be sure to shop around to find the best prices.
  • Dust - Sandpaper produces a lot of dust, which can be a mess to clean up afterwards. Buyers should be sure to properly protect themselves and the surrounding environment before beginning a sanding project.
  • Time Consumption - Sanding can take a long time, especially for large projects. Buyers should be sure to set aside enough time to finish their project.

Best alternatives

  1. Steel Wool - Used to remove rust from surfaces or polish metal.
  2. Belt Sander - A power tool used to sand larger surfaces quickly.
  3. Electric Hand Sander - A power tool used to sand small to medium surfaces.
  4. Sanding Block - A manual tool used to hand sand surfaces.
  5. Grit File - A manual tool used to sand down edges and corners of surfaces.

Related tools, supplies, and accessories

  • Sandpaper Sheets - Pre-cut sheets of sandpaper in a variety of sizes, grains, and backing materials.
  • Sanding Blocks - Blocks made from wood, plastic, or other material, used to provide an even surface and controlled sanding.
  • Sanding Sponges - Special sponges designed to flex to fit the contours of the object being sanded.
  • Sanding Discs - Circular sandpaper discs with an adhesive backing that attach to a rotary or orbital sander.
  • Sanding Belts - Long sandpaper strips used on belt sanders for large surfaces.
  • Sanding Sheets -Sheets in a variety of shapes and sizes designed to be used with special sanding tools.
  • Sanding Rollers -Urethane foam rollers designed for applying a variety of grits of sandpaper.
  • Sanding Brushes - Handheld brushes used to apply sandpaper in tight, hard-to-reach places.
  • Sanding Pads - Special pads designed to extend the life of sandpaper and provide an even sanding surface.

Common questions

  1. What grit of sandpaper should I use? Depending on the material you are sanding, the grit needed can vary. Generally speaking, for hard materials, you should use a lower grit sandpaper like 40-60, and for softer materials, you should use a higher grit sandpaper like 200-320.
  2. What type of sandpaper should I use? The type of sandpaper you should use depends on the application you need it for. For woodworking, it is recommended to use aluminium oxide sandpaper as it is more durable and wear-resistant than garnet or silicone carbide sandpaper. For metalworking, silicone carbide or aluminium oxide sandpaper works best.
  3. What size sandpaper should I use? The size of the sandpaper you should use depends on the type of job you are doing. For larger projects, like sanding cabinets, larger sheets of sandpaper like 9x11 or 12x18 inches would work best. For smaller projects, like sanding furniture, smaller sheets of sandpaper like 4x4 or 4x6 inches would work best.
  4. What backing should I use for the sandpaper? The backing of the sandpaper typically depends on the task you are completing. For hand sanding, flexible or paper backing is best. For machine sanding, screen or cloth backing works best.


An interesting story that might make potential shoppers smile is that sandpaper originated from China during the 5th century AD, as described by the scholar and official Gao Yang during the Northern Qi Dynasty. Gao Yang wrote of a process known as "grit-paper" that would be used to sand down wooden furniture and prepare it for painting or lacquering. According to Gao Yang, this process was used for a long time in China before being popularized in the West. The use of sandpaper has been around for hundreds of years and still remains a tool of choice for many craftsmen. Source

Disclaimer: This buying guide was not created by humans, and it is possible that some of it's content is inaccurate or incomplete. We do not guarantee or take any liability for the accuracy of this buying guide. Additionally, the images on this page were generated by AI and may not accurately represent the product that is being discussed. We have tried to convey useful information, but it is our subjective opinion and should not be taken as complete or factual.