Dirt vs. Sand

By Jaxson

Main Difference

The main difference between Dirt and Sand is that the Dirt is a unclean matter and granular material composed of finely divided rock and mineral particles, sand particles range in diameter from 0.063 to 2 mm (per ISO 14688).

  • Dirt

    Dirt is unclean matter, especially when in contact with a person’s clothes, skin or possessions when they are said to become dirty. Common types of dirt include:

    dust — a general powder of organic or mineral matter

    filth — foul matter such as excrement

    grime — a black, ingrained dust such as soot

    soil — the mix of clay, sand, and humus which lies on top of bedrock

  • Sand

    Sand is a naturally occurring granular material composed of finely divided rock and mineral particles. It is defined by size, being finer than gravel and coarser than silt. Sand can also refer to a textural class of soil or soil type; i.e., a soil containing more than 85 percent sand-sized particles by mass.

    The composition of sand varies, depending on the local rock sources and conditions, but the most common constituent of sand in inland continental settings and non-tropical coastal settings is silica (silicon dioxide, or SiO2), usually in the form of quartz. The second most common type of sand is calcium carbonate, for example, aragonite, which has mostly been created, over the past half billion years, by various forms of life, like coral and shellfish. For example, it is the primary form of sand apparent in areas where reefs have dominated the ecosystem for millions of years like the Caribbean.

    Sand is a non-renewable resource over human timescales, and sand suitable for making concrete is in high demand.

  • Dirt (noun)

    Soil or earth.

  • Dirt (noun)

    A stain or spot (on clothes etc); any foreign substance that worsens appearance, filth

  • Dirt (noun)

    Previously unknown facts, or the invented “facts”, about a person; gossip; kompromat

    “The reporter uncovered the dirt on the businessman by going undercover.”

  • Dirt (noun)

    Meanness; sordidness.

  • Dirt (noun)

    In placer mining, earth, gravel, etc., before washing.

  • Dirt (noun)


  • Dirt (verb)

    To make foul or filthy; soil; befoul; dirty

  • Sand (noun)

    Rock that is grain sizes chart), forming beaches and deserts and also used in construction.

  • Sand (noun)

    A beach or other expanse of sand.

    “The Canadian tar sands are a promising source of oil.”

  • Sand (noun)

    Personal courage.

  • Sand (noun)

    A particle from 62.5 microns to 2 mm in diameter, following the Wentworth scale.

  • Sand (noun)

    A light beige colour, like that of typical sand.

    “color panel|DBC7AB”

  • Sand (noun)

    A single grain of sand.

  • Sand (noun)

    A moment or interval of time; the term or extent of one’s life (referring to the sand in an hourglass).

  • Sand (noun)

    A sandpiper.

  • Sand (adjective)

    Of a light beige colour, like that of typical sand.

  • Sand (verb)

    To abrade the surface of (something) with sand or sandpaper in order to smooth or clean it.

  • Sand (verb)

    To cover with sand.

  • Sand (verb)

    To blot ink using sand.


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