Sea Glass Color: Complete Guide to Origin and Rarity

Sea glass comes in so many beautiful colors. In this post I will reveal where the different colors come from and how rare they are. Who knows, you may have a few gems in your collection!

By the time you find a piece of sea glass on the beach, it has been on quite a journey. Whether it was a bottle, vase or something completely different, it has been tossed about in the waves for decades before ending up in your pocket.

When organizing my sea glass collection, I like to refer to Richard LaMotte’s "Pure Sea Glass Identification Deck" which is a deck of 35 laminated cards. I often take them to the beach too!

LaMotte categorizes colors into four groups: common, uncommon, rare, and extremely rare.

Common Sea Glass Colors

Pieces of clear sea glass

The most common colors of sea glass come from glass products that are still in use today; clear, brown and green.

Most clear sea glass comes from items such as soda bottles, glass food containers, liquor bottles, wine bottles, Mason and Ball canning jars as well as old milk bottles and medicine bottles. Clear sea glass looks frosty and white when dry and is often referred to as white sea glass. Roughly two out of three pieces of sea glass you find will be clear or white.

Pieces of brown sea glass

Brown sea glass may come mainly from beer, root beer and whiskey bottles. The older the glass the less common it is. Old Clorox and Lysol products came in large brown bottles. Today, many wine and American beer companies still use brown bottles to help protect the liquor inside the bottles from the sun. Something in the region of one in two pieces of sea glass will be brown.

Kelly green sea glass is the most common green found today and comes mainly from lemon-lime flavored sodas such as 7-UP, Sprite, Mountain Dew, wine and beer bottles such as Heineken. One in five pieces of sea glass will be green.

Pieces of kelly green sea glass

A complete bottle neck is always a great find!

Uncommon Sea Glass Colors

Seafoam green was a common color for bottles in the late 1800's and early 1900s. Green or soft aqua is the natural color of glass caused by the iron naturally found in batch sand. A common source of this color of glass may come from old Coca~Cola bottles which can be found in clear, and shades of aqua, seafoam green and light blue, other sources of seafoam green may be old seltzer mineral water bottles, baking soda, fruit jars, and ink bottles. If you find a thick soft green or seafoam shard, it’s likely from the early 1900's. One in fifty pieces of sea glass will be seafoam green.
Pieces of seafoam green sea glass

I found all of this at Seaham, England in just a few hours!

Forest Green sea glass. Forest green sea glass is mostly from beer and wine bottles, some of it may also be from art glass. One in fifty pieces of sea glass will be forest green.

Pieces of forest green sea glass

Lime Green sea glass. Lime green sea glass is mostly from beer and lemon-lime soda bottles. One in fifty pieces of sea glass may be lime green.

Pieces of lime green sea glass

You will find lots of these perfectly formed nuggets at Seaham too!

Some pieces of amber sea glass can date back to the late 1800's. Old Clorox and Lysol bottles along with tobacco snuff jars, medicinal jars, beer bottles and even brown mason jars have all contributed to the abundance of brown and amber sea glass. One in twenty five pieces of sea glass may be amber.

Pieces of amber sea glass

Much of the lavender sea glass comes from older Pre World War I clear vintage canning jars and other glass containing manganese, a de-colorizer originally used to remove the green or aqua caused by the iron naturally found in batch sand. Some manganese dioxide decolorized bottles may date as early as the 1820's and as late as the 1930's.

Over a period of many years the glass made with manganese turns lavender when exposed to sunlight. This is called "sun-purpled". One in three hundred pieces of sea glass will have a lavender hue.

You could always try laying some of your clear pieces out in the sun for several weeks to see if they turn lavender!

Pieces of lavender sea glass

Depending on where you are in the world, you may find less lavender sea glass. But don't stop looking!

Sea Glass Hunter’s Handbook

by C.S. Lambert

"The perfect guide for both seasoned and novice collectors, The Sea Glass Hunter's Handbook reveals how to locate the best beaches and predict optimum conditions; understand coastal access laws; determine the personal and professional value of sea glass and identify the source of individual fragments."

Sea Glass Hunter’s Handbook by C.S. Lambert

Rare Sea Glass Colors

Pink sea glass is usually a soft peachy pink. Much of the pink sea glass we find today most likely comes from Depression Glass.

Depression glass was produced in the US in the early 1900's and came in a range of colors. It was mass produced, low end glassware.

During the 1930's, Depression Glass was marketed as affordable glassware and could be purchased at five and dimes. It was also used an incentive by cereal and laundry soap companies which would often include a piece as a gift with purchase.

Gas stations and movie theaters also used Depression Glass items as a gift with purchase. One in one thousand pieces of sea glass may be peach or pink.

Pieces of pink sea glass

Aqua Sea Glass is my favorite color to find. Also known as aquamarine, it looks like an extension of the sea itself and can evoke a feeling of tranquility.

Aqua glass has many subtle variations and shades. Sources of this glass could be from a vintage canning jar or vintage insulator used on electric poles in the early 1900's, Seltzer mineral water bottles, medicine bottles and ink bottles.

Colorless glass replaced aqua as the color of choice with one exception the greenish aqua of Coca-Cola bottles. One in five hundred pieces of sea glass may be Aqua.

Aqua sea glass

I found this piece of aqua multi-colored sea glass at Seaham, England.

Cornflower blue glass predates the color cobalt blue. It is much lighter in color. Cornflower blue sea glass most likely comes from Pre-1900 Phillips Milk Of Magnesia bottles, Bromo Seltzer, Vick's Vapor Rub and ink wells. One in five hundred pieces of sea glass may be Cornflower Blue.

Pieces of cornflower blue sea glass

Cobalt Blue sea glass is vibrant and jewel like. The best known sources for cobalt blue sea glass are vintage Noxzema Jars, Bromo Seltzer, Milk of Magnesia, Vicks Vapor Rub, medicine and poision bottles, castor oil bottles, glass rolling pins, Collyrium soothing eye lotion glass eye wash cups, ink bottles and perfume bottles. One in two hundred and fifty pieces of sea glass may be Cobalt Blue.

Pieces of cobalt blue sea glass

I found these gorgeous cobalt blue pieces in one day at Seaham, England!

Sea Glass: Rare and Wonderful

by C. S. Lambert & Tina Lam

"Recognized expert on sea glass, C.S. Lambert guides readers through her personal collection, revealing the fascinating true stories of each piece’s origin. Lambert shares the story behind the design of vintage bottles, the hidden purpose of mysterious pieces of sea glass, and the history of china patterns and ceramic dolls. She also shares some of the rarest specimens of sea glass, for some of which there are only one or two pieces known to be in existence."

Sea Glass: Rare and Wonderful by C. S. Lambert & Tina Lam

Extremely Rare Sea Glass Colors

Orange sea glass is indeed rare and elusive, it's also a beachcombers dream. I personally have only found about four tiny pieces of orange sea glass, mostly from my trips to Seaham, England.

Orange sea glass most likely originates from auto warning lights, vintage Avon glassware, decorative glass items and art glass. One In ten thousand pieces of sea glass might be orange.

A piece of orange sea glass

Red Sea Glass is one of the most difficult colors of sea glass to find.

Anchor Hocking Royal Ruby Red Glassware was popular and made items such as dishes, cups, glasses, bowls, platters and vases were produced from 1938 to 1967 and then again briefly in the 1970's. In the 1950's Schlitz beer asked Anchor Hocking to create a red beer bottle for them and Schlitz Beer was bottled in Anchor Hocking Royal Ruby.

Anchor Hocking discovered a way to use copper to turn glass a red hue instead of the traditional gold, making the cost of producing this glass much more affordable. Many vintage Avon products were bottled in red glass such as perfume, dinnerware and decorative household items.

Other Sources include car and boat running lights, railroad and ship lanterns along with various other types of household and decorative glass.

What a thrill it was to find my first piece of red sea glass. The waves had tumbled it all the way up to the walk path just south of the pier in San Clemente, California. One in five thousand pieces of sea glass may be red.

Pieces of red sea glass

These are all from Seaham, England.

Turquoise sea glass is very rare and coveted. A few of the possible origins for these gorgeous treasures are old electric glass insulators, vintage siphon seltzer water bottles, old decorative glass and Victorian era stained glass window panes. One in five thousand pieces of sea glass may be deep turquoise.

Pieces of turquoise sea glass

Yellow sea glass or light amber sea glass. Sources for this sea glass are depression glass, art glass, stained glass, old glass insulators and glass that is made with selenium.

During World War I The glass industry replaced manganese with selenium. Over a period of many years glass made with manganese turns lavender when exposed to sunlight and glass made with selenium turns a soft yellow-gold when exposed to sunlight.

One in thirty five hundred pieces of sea glass might be Yellow.

Most gray sea glass shards came from thick pieces of leaded-glass tableware and Depression glass . Another source could be old glass television screens. One in two thousand pieces of sea glass might be gray.

Black glass is one of the oldest bottle colors. Black glass is interesting as it actually has a hint of another color such as brown or olive green.

Pieces of yellow sea glass

During the 1700's most liquor and ale/beer bottles were mass produced as a cheap container between the 1840's and 1880's bottles were made in a deep, dark olive green color. The glass only appears to be black because of the density of the glass.

If you find black sea glass it might look like a common rock, Its best to take it home and hold it up to a light. This glass may be from Champagne bottles, Case Gin bottles (this tall bottle is easily identifiable due to its square sides that narrow at the base) dark green wine bottles. One in two thousand pieces of sea glass might be black.

Pieces of black sea glass

What's Your Favorite Sea Glass Color?

Let me know in the comments section below so we can find out which is most popular!

The Ultimate Guide to Sea Glass: Beach Comber's Edition: Finding, Collecting, Identifying, and Using the Ocean’s Most Beautiful Stones Paperback

by Mary Beth Beuke

"As the owner of one of the world's most elaborate sea glass collections, Mary Beth Beuke gets to talk about these prized ocean gems on a daily basis. Unfortunately, with each passing day, sea glass becomes more and more difficult to find, making the hunt more of a challenge to the seeker"

The Ultimate Guide to Sea Glass: Beach Comber's Edition: Finding, Collecting, Identifying, and Using the Ocean’s Most Beautiful Stones Paperback by Mary Beth Beuke

121 thoughts on “Sea Glass Color: Complete Guide to Origin and Rarity”

    • I found an aqua price when at a beach with my main, he loved looking for more and we found lots but all white.
      Funny that the first found was the rarest. I’d like to get it made into a beach lace
      But I don’t want to break it, it’s
      Quite a small delicate peice. So magical.

  1. I love the turquoise sea glass. I am going to Cape Breton and will certainly look to see if I can find some sea glass.

  2. Awesome article! Me and my girlfriend just got home. We went out in a big floatie and used dingy oars to get from a local sea glass beach to another we couldn’t reach,even at low tide! We got some glass! She even found a pink and part of a stopper! Then we decided to row on to another secret beach where we got all kinds of colors! I found a couple of pale pinks and we both found colbat blues! Then i found a turquoise!!

  3. Love finding sea glass. My grandson found a large piece that is shaped like a flower (tried to attach photo but won’t let me). We were trying to figure out what it could have come from.

  4. In Michigan we have periwinkle blue glass that is very opaque, and is actually a manufacturing “slag” dumped into Lake Michigan. They call it “Leland Blue” due to the fact that it is nearly exclusively found near the shores of the small town of Leland. Many artists collect it and make it into pricey tourist jewelry pieces. My daughter was lucky enough to find a few pieces on the beach up there a couple years ago.

  5. I collect seaglass from every beach I walk. I don’t have a favourite colour. I love them all. I do art work with them. Have put together some interesting pieces.
    Thanx for the education. I collect mostly in Newfoundland but have also collected in Jamaica and Mexico.

  6. My kids love finding “beach diamonds” as they call them! We like by lake Winnipeg and mostly find clear, and brown but they have found some different shades of blue and green. I’m going to show them this article:)

  7. I love the red sea glass and the cobalt blue. I am not a collector but my sister is and she has many jars of seaglass. She makes beautiful items with it. The saddest part is that now that everyone recycles glass, sea glass will eventually become extinct. Unless ppl continue to illegally dump..

    • I live here and you certainly should visit! Beautiful coastline and definitely plenty of sea glass to be found! There used to be a glass factory along the coast of Seaham and they would just dump all their waste into the sea, which is why there is so much of it 🙂

  8. I have jars of aqua and clear beach glass from my years living on Kwajalein Atoll, Marshall Islands, the site of a major battle during WWII. I have assumed this glass is from Coke bottles because we often found whole Coke bottles while scuba diving. I learned of this site today because a friend who had also lived on Kwaj posted the article. Thank you for the info…very interesting!

  9. I love to collect sea glass but never knew there are so many varieties! I feel like I should go to England! Thanks for the article, it is very informative.

  10. Thanks so much for the info on sea glass…..Have a small collection….but always wondered about the colors…..great artical…..Thanks again…..and happy sea glass hunting….❤️

  11. I find bunches of the forest green in a creek near me. The creek goes right through Charlotte and people used to just toss trash into it. Now after a rain it washes out.

  12. I have beautiful Blue Cornflower jewelry. I wear it when I am dressed up. I always get asked about it. I believe it was found on Sanibel Island in Florida. It has been in my possession for forty years. I love it!

    • Wow! forty years, I bet it’s beautiful Ginnie. I have a stunning cornflower blue sea glass bracelet from my lovely friend Jacquie of Sea Angel Designs in Scotland.

    • Thank you Jane, I love pink too. I only have two or three. Black is the most difficult for me to find, I’ll bet I’ve tossed many black pieces back on a cloudy day.

  13. Thanks for the article! I have been a collector for about 30 years! I live in the north east of the USA. Recently read an article that Bermuda is not allowing people to bring sea glass home! My husband and I found a nice amount of cobalt blue glass in Bermuda a number of years ago. Sea glass is getting harder and harder to find.

  14. Thanks for your info. When I was in Halifax last year my daughter, Lesley Huska, took me to Prince Edward Island, and we spent all afternoon sea glass hunting. I think many were there before us as our finds were small. However, we really enjoyed it. If I lived near water I’d be looking!

  15. My mom has been collecting sea glass for many years and has about half a million pieces! I (obviously!!) linked her this article and her assessment is that red seems like it must be more rare than 1 in 5000 as she only has about a dozen pieces in her collection. Interestingly, she is a California native and we have both spent time sea glass hunting on the beaches of San Clemente where you discovered your first piece of red. Cobalt and lavender are definitely my personal favorites. Thank you for this article, it was quite enjoyable!

  16. I love this article! I have been a sea glass collector for many years and very much appreciate this information! I was in Northern California in May 2017 and found the most glass and largest pieces ever..even a turquoise piece and the largest green piece.. which I believe is the bottom of a hand blown glass float! So excited! Thank you Richard for sharing this article!

  17. Thank you for this article. I have been sea glass gathering for just over 5 years in all seasons. I have many of the colors you showed and I would like to send a photo of my best ones. I found most of my black glass in Joggins, Nova Scotia but for all the rest it’s been Cape Breton Nova Scotia. Thanks again for the info.

  18. I’ve found one small pease of yellow, two Cornflower blue and two Colbat Blue. I collect beach glass because I make candles out of them and sell them for fundraising.

  19. I live near to Seaham and my two boys and I have been down a couple of times looking for glass. I actually found a really lovely piece today on the Blast beach end of Seaham. It’s fairly big and has the letters “ISK” and numbers “1553” on it. I’m guessing a whiskey bottle with batch number? We mainly find lots of the pale green, but I did also find a tiny piece of cobalt blue today, too. I think I need to get a jar to keep all the pieces in! I have definitely found something I love to collect haha.

  20. Wow, what a wealth of knowledge I received today! Thank you. I only have a few pieces,but will now be on the lookout!

  21. I grew up at the Jersey Shore and have collected sea glass for over 50 years. When I first started, there was a significant amount of “beach glass” available in a variety of colors on most of the beaches that stretched between Monmouth County all the way down to Cape May (including the infamous “Cape May Diamonds.”). There was also a lot of sea glass found on family vacations to Cape Cod and New Hampshire. I have since moved to Northern Virginia, and find that it is much more difficult to find sea glass. It can be found, but not as easily as when I was younger. I have found some pieces on and around the coastal beaches in Delaware, Maryland and Virginia (mostly white and brown)…but occasionally an aqua or green piece.

  22. My mother collected sea glass. The first little collection to which I was exposed was displayed in a bowl, on a coffee table in the living room–her treasures from Nova Scotia, ca. 1972. Much later, after a years-long experience of trauma, my husband and I moved to Gloucester MA in 2005. I thought that the rhythm of the tide would be soothing and started to walk the beaches–and instantly became hooked on my mother’s hobby. My favorite is quite common, Kelly green. My husband’s favorite is not: He loves black, and he can sniff it out like a French pig does truffles!

  23. Your article is very interesting. I collected seaglass. I live on the Base des Chaleur and have been collecting for many yrs.
    We don’t have pink, yellow or mauve here. Although I keep searching and many one day, I’ll find some. I am a blogger and did a post on my collection last yr. You can check it out at this address. Thanks!

  24. My best glass hunting trip was to Murano Italy! This is where some of the most beautiful glass in the world is made! At the base of the lighthouse there is tons of beach glass in the most amazing colors!! Worth the trip !

  25. I have been collecting for about 20 years. Mostly Jersey shore!!! I found a few pieces of brown this spring on a cruise stop in Labadee …. I have mostly brown , green and clear. A few blue, lt green and one red!!!! Also sand dollars!! I’m obsessed!! Thanks for the article!!

  26. so basically sea glass is trash that has been polluting our oceans, but so much of a better type of pollution than plastic.

  27. I live on the Isles of Scilly and it is a beach comber’s paradise. I have a favourite beach where I collect my sea glass, it used to be an old dump. The Isles are also known for their shipwrecks over the centuries, so much pottery and glass appearing on the beaches is attributed to this. I make and sell sea glass jewellery. I’ve even been making some rainbow seaglass pendants, limited by the red and lavender! How fascinating to read this. I never new that about how some of the glass gets its’ colour. I will be laying my lavender pieces out in the sun now to see what happens. Ever hopeful of a purple piece one day. I have a couple of deep maroon type pieces. The red/deep pink that I find is very often clear glass with a coloured side. Any ideas what that kind of glass might have been?

    • Clear glass with color on just one side is called’ flash’ glass. You should be able to find more information on origins by doing a Google search, because my foggy mind doesn’t remember

  28. Bob
    August 5, 2017
    I love them all! I do have a question about the math! I added up the incidences of occurrence mentioned and it was over 150%. I know there is New Math, Old Math, and Fuzzy Math but I’m confused here.

  29. Hi.
    What a wonderful article and classification of beach glass which I have been collecting here in Asturias, Northern Spain for only a few years. If the last image in your article refers to ‘black glass’ and what you refer to as very rare, this is a common beach glass in Asturias, at least in the beach I normally search for this jewel that I then cut to use in my mosaics as it has wonderful light reflection properties and I am addicted to it.
    Best wishes and let us hope we soon get that elusive piece.

  30. I live on the NW Gulf Coast of Florida but have never seen any seaglass. I am going to become much more vigilant going forward. I love the idea of collecting these pieces of glass with a story.

  31. I love your article. Thank you! I love sea glass. I live in Jamaica and collect and make art. Mostly common glass, but I have found one red and some baby blue.

  32. I love this article!!! Thank you for your knowledge!! A couple years ago I found a pink piece about the size of a fifty cent piece and it had… puffed up???…flowers on it. It was very worn so the flowers wold have been gone in another few decades, but so cool. My 3 year old got ahold of it somehow…and lost it. I seriously almost cried. But what an amazing find!!!!

  33. Growing up in Victoria I loved to collect sea glass as a child. I love all the colours but sea foam green is the ultimate for me. It instantly evokes the ocean.

  34. Going to have to keep my eyes peeled for this. We cruise frequently and have never really sought out sea glass. Although I am a little leery after hearing that you are not allowed to bring any back especially from Bermuda.

  35. Hey Jonna, my cousin in NS Canada shared this link but I’m happy to see you found so much sea glass not so far from me at Seaham, England. Did you just happen to find it there, or did you go there because it is known to accumulate a lot of sea glass?
    I’m look8ng for something rustic to adorn a garden gate and was thinking of driftwood, but your article has given me some new inspiration! Thank you.

  36. I did find a piece of Red Sea Glass last weekend, ruby color sweet find it was I had no idea it was so rare! worth what????????

  37. I have a lovely piece of med to dark green glass, a good size and smooth as smooth. Found this year at Chania in Crete. I have placed it in a white dish on my gravel Rockery in the garden. Nice little treasure.

  38. I live in Conneaut, Ohio and walk the beaches of Lake Erie near my home almost daily. My collection is quite large. I have several of the most rare colors, but finding red is hitting the jackpot. I only have three red.

  39. I didn’t even know that sea glass existed (I am almost 54 yrs old) until I watched the movie Spanglish I guess that is because I live in Southern, Indiana and the only beaches I ever visited were in Florida. I sure would LOVE to live somewhere where I could visit beaches a lot and find me some Sea Glass. I think it is beautiful!!

  40. Great information. I started my sea glass collection in St Maarten where I found many green, brown and white. I plan to use in jewelry making. I now need to separate the greens as I have different shades to compare to your examples. Thanks.

  41. I’ve been collecting since I was a kid and I have a little bit of all these colors you’ve mentioned!! My favorite is the colbolt blue and the red.

  42. I know it’s not beach glass but my favorite find is a porcelain doll’s foot I found on a beach in Maine. I would think that’s pretty rare!

  43. As a young lad in Winnipeg Canada l was given a red and a blue piece by the mom of one of my brother’s friends who happened to be interested in minerals, fossils and seashells. The red one is the size of a quarter and is shaped like a t-bone steak and the blue one (a very interesting intense sky-blue) is a sorta bean shape, but flat. I’ve never seen any other like them and unfortunately don’t recall where she got them. She died about 15 years ago so I’ll likely never know but l still have ’em.

  44. Thank you for your article. Sea glass hunting is my favorite hobby. My sister and I hunt the Eastern Shore of Virginia where we mostly find white, brown, green and light aqua. We have found a few light shades of pink also. My favorite is red but have only been lucky enough to find three so far. One of my favorite pieces is a thick brown with Clorax on the bottom. Thanks again, I truly enjoyed this.

  45. Fun! I wonder what the rarity scale is when it comes to size. I used to collect what we called beach glass in Toronto on the shore of Lake Ontario. I’ve kept only the aqua colored pieces, and only the largest, and some are enormous. The largest is nearly 5 inches long and 2.5 inches thick! I remember finding it and feeling like I’d found the hope diamond

  46. Omg I can’t believe there are others who are sea glass aficionados! I have been a sea glass addict since I was a teen and have many pieces I adore. I live in Connecticut and have found most pieces here on Long Island Sound and in Wells, Maine. I adore cobalt blue and have some wonderful huge chunks of it! Also a red piece . I so want to travel now to find the pink, yellow, black you mentioned. My sea glass is one of my most precious treasures! Thanks for sharing your sea glass knowledge and where to find it! Cindy

    • Hi Cindy, I’m so glad you found us. I hope you can do some traveling to find the other colors. My sea glass is definitely treasured in my house too.

  47. About 7 years ago I was on a trip to Vermont with friends. We came upon a small beach on a lake and collected a lot of sea glass in many colors…pink, aqua, turquoise, brown and clear. It was magical! We went back the next day to continue collecting but the beach had been excavated and all the sea glass was gone????? We never did find out where all of the glass came from but it is a wonderful memory that we share.

    • I’ll bet it’s gorgeous. I have yet to find a true purple myself, although I have found a few light lavender or sun glass (clear glass that turns purple when exposed to the sunlight due to the clarifying agent manganese)

      • I recently found a beautiful purple piece of seaglass in the New Englad area of the United States. If you want to imagine what it looked like, the hex code for the color is about 782747

  48. Great article and so informative. We find beach glass daily on western shore of Seneca Lake. We have collected so much I have two glass lamps filled with vicarious colors and sizes – made by my son and daughter in law.
    The grandkids add to their “collection” every time they walk the beach and race to show me what they find. Especially the blue. They know that is my “special” glass.
    However, We often find small pieces of flow blue or other rare types of glass that goes in my very special collection.
    Making memories …….

    • Hi Sue, Sounds like great memories. I plan on doing the same when I’m blessed with grandbabies. Your sea glass lamps sound gorgeous. I’d love to see a photo :).

  49. I love all colors. I was in St. Barths last month and came home with quite a bit of glass. Most of it was on Shell Beach. Lots of dark green. I found one piece of cobalt when I was in St.
    Barths last November. I am addicted too. I have never found any in Texas but love the beaches there. I live in Central Texas.

  50. Thanks for informative info.
    I recently bought a beach house on Cape Cod. Although our beach doesn’t have much sea glass, we do find some, mostly very tiny pieces though, mixed in with tons of rocks. Many of our clear rocks look like it could be glass, but I don’t know how to tell the difference. Is there a way to know if it’s a rock or piece of aged sea glass? For now, if I like it and it looks like glass, I add it to my collection anyway.
    I recently went to St. Maarten and found lots of bright green pieces of sea glass. They sell mostly Heineken beer there, lol! I saved an empty clear pretty shaped liquor bottle to display my collection.
    Happy sea glass hunting everyone!

    • Hi Debbie, I know what you mean. It can be tricky telling white/clear sea glass from crystal quartz. Usually, quartz or other clear-ish beach stones will have organic inclusions. Be sure to look at the piece wet, dry and held up to the sun light. It will likely become white when dry.

  51. Very interesting article although the math doesn’t quite add up. You say 2/3(66%) of found glass is white and 1/2(50%) is brown. We’ve already exceeded 100%….

  52. If you ever feel you have to much or to much of one color I suggest donating to a local school art department. They act like you are giving them a gift from the gods.

  53. Love the article! Thank you for sharing! Husband loves to cruise so have had the privilege of searching for beach glass all over the Caribbean and Europe. I could spend hours walking on the beaches looking, but hubby has a short attention span 🙂

    • Hi Teresa, Thank you. Wow, I bet you have found some beautiful colors on your travels. I too could spend hours walking the beaches looking for sea glass.

  54. I love the turquoise color! I found a turquoise marble, doubtful it’s antique, but so beautiful-in the Virgin Islands. I found many pieces in green, white, and brown at the beach at Elba in Italy. I can see where this could be something I could entertain myself with for hours if I found the right place. Thank you for the info!

  55. My friend sent me your article knowing I would love it and I do. Purple is my favorite color but I’ve never seen it. I am going to try and put some of my clear pieces in the sun to see if it turns color.
    I’ve been collecting sea glass for over 30 years while vacationing on Martha’s Vineyard, MA, USA.
    I even spotted a great red piece while our friend was driving us on the beach. He couldn’t believe I saw it when he stopped. My best piece is pink, the size of a half dollar, and I went to a jewelry class and made a gorgeous pendant out of it. My grandkids, 2 and 4, now enjoy searching for it on the beach. You make me want to go to England!!

  56. This is my favorite article online I’ve read this year! I was an asiduous sea glass collector as a child on Sandy Beach on Peakes Island, Maine in Casco Bay. It was green, brown, white/clear, blue, purple and even red there.

  57. I have met others on the beach who have found old bottle stoppers….I would love to find one! There was ano area where pair point glass seconds (rejects) were dumped in the ocean, hard to get to for me, but will try at low tide. . There was a pair point factory years ago. Have been told there are great pieces!

  58. Enjoyed reading this post. Very informative, and I’d agree with your rarity scale. Whenever I visit family in Cleveland, I head down to Lake Erie to my “honey hole”. Found my first piece of cobalt blue this weekend. For whatever reason, the Amber is harder to find around here, but there’s a ton of clear, Seafoam green and aqua. I also like to find pottery shards from shipwrecks. Still looking for a marble, which I’ve read used to be used as ballast in some of the Great Lakes freighters.

  59. I just remembered. We used to find lots of dark blue sea glass on the beach between Lyme Regis and Charmouth, on the Dorset/Devon border, UK. There was a Victorian landfill in the cliffs above, and in time, with quite frequent cliff falls, the sea would cough up the dark blue varieties that had come originally from old medicine bottles.

  60. Just found a piece of “white” sea glass on the beach on Isle Royale (on the Michigan/Canadian border in Lake Superior) that has a raised image of a fish in the glass, and below it the word ‘swim?’. Am trying to figure out where/how to find out more about where this piece of glass may have originated. Google isn’t helpful…


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