Saltwater Aquarium Blog

10 Most Purchased Saltwater Aquarium Products–SaltwaterAquariumBlog

Are you interested in knowing what the most purchased saltwater aquarium products everyone else is buying? Let’s take a look at the purchasing habits of your fellow readers and see what they’re up to.

What you will find in this article

About this article

One of the ways I am able to pay for the expenses associated with is from commissions paid to me through the Amazon Affiliates program. If you’ve read any of the other Bestselling Products articles in this series, you’ll already know what I’m talking about it and you can jump down the page.

If this is your first time, I’ll try to explain quickly. supports websites like this one by paying a small commission (at no additional cost to the purchaser…they’ve been doing this since the early days of the internet) when websites link to products…and people buy those products, as a result of the referral.

So the way it works is that many of the most loyal supporters of this site click through those affiliate links to Amazon when they buy their gear because they know they’ll get the best price from Amazon and they know it supports the site.

Others might start their research on this site, click over to get more information, and then make the purchase once they read the reviews and more detailed specs.

The reason I find this information so interesting is that these are (not necessarily) my recommendations. They are actual products purchased by actual SaltwaterAquariumBlog readers, like you. Which means, they’re really YOUR recommendations.

I’m always looking for new ideas about great products to purchase–and I know many of you are, as well. These articles are a way for me to share back to the community about what you all are doing and what products you value because you voted with your wallets.

Top 10 most popular saltwater aquarium products

Most purchased saltwater aquarium products in 2018

So here are the Top 10 most purchased saltwater aquarium products in 2018

#10. Live Nannochloropsis Phytoplankton

The #10 most purchased saltwater aquarium products is live phytoplankton–and specifically Nannochloropsis phytoplankton.

Live Phytoplankton

Live phytoplankton is a popular saltwater aquarium product for feeding corals and live foods

Nanno is a popular phyto that is used to feed corals, rotifers, copepods, and brine shrimp. It’s basically the lowest link on the food chain and is both a popular reef tank supplement as well as a major food item if you plan to breed saltwater fish.

See how I set up my phytoplankton cultures here.

#9. Seachem Cupramine

Coming in at number nine is Seachem Cupramine…which unfortunately means…that a lot of you found this site while searching for treatments for saltwater ich, I’m afraid.

Seachem brand cupramine

cupramine is the most common treatment for saltwater ich

Cupramine is the gold standard treatment for pesky fish parasites. It’s a popular item to purchase, but I’m a bit surprised to see so much of it is needed out there. Sorry for those of you fighting with marine ich.

#8. Tetra Whisper Air Pump

Another surprise to me here is that the #8 most purchased saltwater aquarium product is the Tetra Whisper series of air pumps.

Whisper Air Pump

whisper air pumps are popular among readers

Pretty simple, this device puts out a constant stream of air that gets sent through a small diameter soft plastic tube and is used either to simply add oxygen and carbon dioxide to the water or to run your sponge filters.

I hope this means that lots of you are setting up quarantine tanks to prevent saltwater ich from devastating your tank…but based on the last two items, it could also mean that you’re trying to culture your own phytoplankton…or using this pump to run the filters in your hospital tank where you’re treating sick fish with copper :(.

#7. ZooMed Spirulina Flakes

Now we’re talking. The #7 most purchased saltwater aquarium product is a flake food that I personally use all the time. It’s the Sprirulina 20 flake food, from ZooMed.

ZooMed Spirulina Flakes
Spirulina flakes are the most popular aquarium food

This really is a staple in my tanks. Most of the fish will greedily take it (as long as I feed it before or instead of a frozen food).

#6. Reef Master Test Kit

This is a good sign–# 6 is the Reef Master Test Kit, from API. This kit comes with everything you need to test 4 important water parameters for a reef tank: nitrate, phosphate, calcium and carbonate hardness. It’s a great kit for once your tank (and biological filter) is established.

Reef Master Test Kit

Reef masters test kit

Thanks for testing your water, loyal readers, it’s critically important to know, record and track your water quality.

#5. Julian’s Thing

Now we’re getting interesting. You all aren’t all business, you’re getting some cool/fun gadgets. Julian’s Thing is a neat little tool that helps you with target feeding your corals.

Julian’s Thing

Julian's thing is a cool piece of equipment

Time to add one to my wishlist (and upgrade from my cheap (and insufficiently long) turkey baster. I’ve been reaching my hand in the aquarium all of these years.

#4. The New Saltwater Aquarium Guide

If you could see me now, you’d know that I’m grinning, from ear-to-ear. Beaming even. Thank you for making The New Saltwater Aquarium Guide the 4th on the list of most purchased saltwater aquarium products.

The New Saltwater Aquarium Guide

The New Saltwater Aquarium Guide e-Book is popular among readers

If you’re not familiar with this book–it’s my flagship book. It’s been a #1 Bestseller in multiple aquaria or fish-related categories on Amazon. It is the first of several books in the Reef Aquarium Series that I authored, but it is by far the bestselling.

#3. Saltwater Master Test Kit

The # 3 on the most purchased saltwater aquarium products list is the Saltwater Master Test Kit, from API. This kit is similar to the Reef Master Kit (#6), in that it has all you need to do 4 tests, but the tests themselves are different:

API Saltwater Master test kit
The most commonly purchased test kit is the Saltwater Master Test Kit from API

I find it slightly frustrating that they duplicate the nitrate test across the two kits there…because otherwise, the two items are completely complimentary. This kit is essential for when you first start your tank and when you set up your display and quarantine tanks because it has the tests you need to determine when your tank has fully cycled.

#2. Reef Crystals Sea Salt

Coming in as the #2 most commonly purchased item is Reef Crystals Sea Salt. One of the most popular articles on Saltwater Aquarium Blog is a review article that compares the various salt mix brands across a few key attributes. You can learn more about that, here.

Reef Crystals

Reef Crystals Marine Salt Mix

The #1, Most Purchased Saltwater Aquarium Products

Instant Ocean Sea Salt

Perhaps not surprisingly, the top ranking, #1 item on the list of Most Purchased Saltwater Aquarium Products in 2018 was Instant Ocean brand Sea Salt.

Instant Ocean Sea Salt

Instant Ocean Sea Salt is the #1 Most Popular brand

We all need salt for our aquariums and Instant Ocean is probably the most popular brand, in the world. It’s a great, high-quality salt and a good value for the money. It’s also the brand I personally use.

I appreciate YOU

Thank you, loyal reader, for reading and thank you, loyal supporters, for buying the stuff you need in a way that supports this blog.


This list has a combination of some fun things…and some very practical things. In hindsight, it seems fairly straightforward that salt mixes, foods, and test kits top the charts. Those are routine consumables. I’m a bit surprised that no dosing supplements cracked the top 10. I would have expected calcium supplements (kalkwasser or two-part) might have made it.

Your thoughts

What are your thoughts about this list? Is there a product you expected to see but didn’t? What type of products do you want to see on the next list?

Ten most popular saltwater aquarium products for a reef tank


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