How To Polish Sea Shells

little women podcast
3 min readMar 26, 2022


Collecting Sea Shells

​Collecting seashells and identifying them is one of my favourite hobbies. In this tutorial, I shall share with you how I clean and polish the seashells that I collect.
After the day at the beach place your sandy seashells on a towel or a bowl (unless you want to sand all over).

Never pick up seashells that you think might be alive. If you find a living seashell from the beach just carefully place it back to the sand. 90% of the seashells that land onshore are just empty shells.

Removing The Sand

​Pour some warm water into a large bowl and replace your shells there carefully. Let the seashells stay in the warm water for a while. Water gently removes the extra sand from the shells.

Drying The Sea Shells

After the sand has been removed replace seashells back into the tower and dry them.

If you travel abroad and see pretty seashells and you wish to take some home with you check the custom and wildlife protection regulations of that country to see if you can bring them home or not.


​For polishing, it is recommended to use natural oils. You can use bamboo oil, coconut oil, baby oil. I´v even heard some people using olive oil but that can be quite sticky. Personally, I like to use coconut oil + it smells good.

Gently start polishing your seashell with coconut oil. To do this you can use a toothbrush or cotton buds. This great scallop that I found from the beach last weekend is very smooth so I just spread the oil with my hands. If your seashell has a very rough surface I would recommend using a toothbrush.

​All pretty and shiny! I hope you enjoyed this tutorial.

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little women podcast

Illustrator, writer and folklorist. Likes cats, tea and period dramas. A host of the Little Women Podcast.