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Home > Cats > 9 Best Lightweight Cat Litters in 2024 – Reviews & Top Picks

9 Best Lightweight Cat Litters in 2024 – Reviews & Top Picks

cat looking at the crystal litter

Cat litter is a staple in the cat owner’s home. While it is especially important for indoor cats, outdoor cats also need somewhere private and safe where they can do their business. But that doesn’t mean you want the aroma of cat urine and a trail of pellets from the litter tray to the furniture. Nor do you want to injure your back trying to tip the bag up and fill the litter box.

Lightweight cat litter is easier to carry to and from the litter box, but it still needs to collect your cat’s business, prevent noxious odor from spreading through the house, and be comfortable and convenient enough for your cat to readily use. Available as clumping or non-clumping, scented or unscented, and made from a surprisingly wide range of materials, there are many options for cat owners to choose from.

To help whittle down your choices, read our reviews of the best lightweight cat litters available, below.

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A Quick Comparison of Our Favorites of 2024

Image Product Details
Winner
Pioneer Pet Grass Cat Litter Pioneer Pet Grass Cat Litter
  • Half the weight of clay
  • Clumps quickly and solidly
  • Minimal dust
  • Second place
    World’s Best Unscented Clumping Corn Cat Litter World’s Best Unscented Clumping Corn Cat Litter
  • All-natural corn formula
  • Can be flushed
  • Clumps quickly
  • Third place
    Fresh Step Crystal Cat Litter Fresh Step Crystal Cat Litter
  • Controls odor well
  • Lasts up to 30 days
  • Expands when wet
  • Okocat Clumping Wood Cat Litter Okocat Clumping Wood Cat Litter
  • No artificial perfume or scent
  • Designed to be soft
  • Environmentally friendly
  • Tidy Cats Glade Cat Litter Tidy Cats Glade Cat Litter
  • Cheap price
  • The jug is more convenient than a bag
  • Controls ammonia smells well
  • The 9 Best Lightweight Cat Litters

    1. Pioneer Pet SmartCat Clumping Grass Litter – Best Overall

    Pioneer Pet SmartCat Unscented Clumping Grass Cat Litter

    Material: Grass
    Clumping: Yes
    Size: 20lbs

    There are pitfalls to the most commonly used litter materials. Clay is the traditional choice, but it is heavy, dusty, and can form cement on the litter tray. Wood pellets are similarly dusty, break apart, and are outclassed by other materials when it comes to absorbing liquid and expanding.

    Pioneer Pet SmartCat Unscented Clumping Grass Cat Litter eschews traditional materials and is instead made purely from grass seeds. Grass seeds clump quickly, which prevents smells from traveling through the house. It also clumps into a ball, which makes it easy to scoop and dispose of. And it’s half the weight of clay so it qualifies as lightweight cat litter. For these reasons, it makes our choice as the best overall lightweight cat litter.

    However, for all of its benefits, and even considering it lasts twice as long as clay litter, it is expensive, and the seeds get caught in kitty’s paws, so they track all over the house.

    Pros
    • Half the weight of clay
    • Clumps quickly and solidly
    • Minimal dust
    Cons
    • Expensive
    • Tracks through the house

    2. World’s Best Unscented Clumping Corn Cat Litter – Best Value

    World’s Best Unscented Clumping Corn Cat Litter

    Material: Corn
    Clumping: Yes
    Size: 28lb

    World’s Best Unscented Clumping Corn Cat Litter is another litter made from non-traditional materials. This time it is made from compressed corn kernels.

    Compressed corn clumps quickly and has minimal dust, especially compared to clay. Although you should always check local regulations before doing so, it is safe to flush down the toilet, even if you have a septic tank, and it can also be safely composted (never put cat waste in a vegetable patch or near groundwater). This litter is unscented, which means that it does not contain any artificial or chemical fragrances, either, and it is reasonably priced compared to others.

    However, despite World’s Best’s claims, it is surprisingly dusty and although it being unscented means that there is no artificial smell, the corn does not control the smell of ammonia and would benefit from the addition of a natural odor controller. There have also been some, albeit limited, complaints of bug infestations in the bag: a symptom of using natural corn kernels, maybe, but an unpleasant experience if you’re unlucky enough to have it happen to you.

    Pros
    • All-natural corn formula
    • Can be flushed
    • Clumps quickly
    Cons
    • No odor control
    • Dustier than claimed

    3. Fresh Step Non-Clumping Crystal Cat Litter – Premium Choice

    Fresh Step Fresh Scented Non-Clumping Crystal Cat Litter

    Material: Silica crystals
    Clumping: No
    Size: 8lb

    Silica crystals are made from silicon dioxide, which is a type of sand. The crystals naturally absorb liquid, sucking up urine and the moisture in your cat’s poo. This prevents puddles of urine at the bottom of the litter box, and it also traps in smells.

    Fresh Steps Fresh Scented Non-Clumping Crystal Cat Litter is made from silica crystals. It is expensive but it does do a good job of controlling smells without using artificial perfumes or other unnatural additives. It is also considerably lighter than traditional litter materials. Although the litter is non-clumping, it does expand when it contains moisture, which means that the unused crystals fall through the litter scoop and back into the tray.

    Fresh Step claims that the crystals are good for 30 days, which means that, although you will likely have to top it up in the meantime, you shouldn’t have to do a full litter tray change as often with this litter. As well as being expensive, however, it is also very dusty, and the crystals are hard and painful when stood on.

    Pros
    • Controls odor well
    • Lasts up to 30 days
    • Expands when wet
    Cons
    • Very hard crystals
    • Expensive
    • Dusty

    4. Okocat Soft Clumping Wood Cat Litter – Best for Kittens

    Okocat Super Soft Clumping Wood Unscented Cat Litter

    Material: Wood
    Clumping: Yes
    Size: 16.7lbs

    Kittens will usually start to use a litter tray from the age of about eight weeks. They will watch their mum using the tray. You should pop the kitten in the tray after they have eaten or had a drink of water, praise them when they use the tray, and ignore them when they go outside the box. Although most kittens will take to litter training successfully, barring a few accidents here and there, it certainly helps to have a good litter. Anything too smelly, hard, or dusty, can be enough to put a sensitive young cat off.

    Okocat Super Soft Clumping Wood Unscented Cat Litter is unscented. It is designed to be soft on your kitten’s little paws, and it does a good job of retaining and controlling smells. Okocat claims that it is also 99% dust-free. It should be gentle and sensitive enough for any kitten.

    It has an average price but, despite being soft for kittens, it is very dusty, and it tracks badly. It doesn’t always clump as well as it should, either, which can make cleaning the litter tray a challenge.

    Pros
    • No artificial perfume or scent
    • Designed to be soft
    • Made from reclaimed wood so environmentally friendly
    Cons
    • Dusty
    • Tracks badly
    • Doesn’t always clump well

    5. Tidy Cats Lightweight Glade Scented Clumping Clay Cat Litter

    Tidy Cats Lightweight Glade Scented Clumping Clay Cat Litter

    Material: Clay
    Clumping: Yes
    Size: 8.5lb

    Tidy Cats Lightweight Glade Scented Clumping Clay Cat Litter is a lightweight clay litter. Clay litters are among some of the heaviest on the market, especially when they get wet, which they obviously will do. Not only is Tidy Cats light, but it comes in a more conveniently shaped jug, rather than a bag with an uncomfortable handle.

    It has an ammonia blocker to prevent the smell of ammonia present in cat wee: protection which Purina claims lasts for 14 days. It also uses the Clear Springs flavored Glade air freshener, which gives a pleasant smell when the litter is moved. The litter is well priced as one of the cheapest on this list and, as long as you like the smell of air freshener, it does a good job of blocking aromas and replacing them with Glade.

    Tidy Cats does track badly, which means that you will be sweeping up around the litter tray and potentially finding bits of clay throughout the house. The clay could clump better when wet, and the strong Glade smell won’t be popular with all owners, or indeed sensitive cats.

    Pros
    • Cheap price
    • The jug is more convenient than a bag
    • Controls ammonia smells well
    Cons
    • The Glade smell is strong
    • Tracks badly
    • Could clump better

    6. Tidy Cats Lightweight 24/7 Scented Clumping Clay Cat Litter

    Tidy Cats Lightweight 24/7 Scented Clumping Clay Cat Litter

    Material: Clay
    Clumping: Yes
    Size: 17lb

    Tidy Cats Lightweight 24/7 Scented Clumping Clay Cat Litter is a clay litter. Although clay is not usually associated with lightweight litter products, Tidy Cats uses clay that they claim weighs half as much as other clumping clay litters.

    The litter uses an ammonia blocker that immediately prevents the smell of ammonia from spreading, and it is scented, so when the litter is agitated and absorbed to take on liquid, it masks any unpleasant smells. Clay does a good job of clumping as soon as it gets wet, but it does also tends to stick to the litter tray walls and base, which can especially become a problem if left to harden over a few days.

    A common side effect of using clay cat litter is that it is naturally very dusty, and the Tidy Cats litter is no exception. It creates a dust cloud when pouring and whenever your cat kicks around in it. Also, this lightweight clay is easily scattered so you will have to sweep up around the litter tray or invest in some kind of mat to place around it. It does track badly.

    Pros
    • Half the weight of traditional clay litter
    • Clumps well
    • Prevents ammonia aroma
    Cons
    • Very dusty
    • Tracks badly

    7. Fresh Step Lightweight Febreze Scented Clumping Cat Litter

    Fresh Step Lightweight Febreze Scented Clumping Clay Cat Litter

    Material: Clay
    Clumping: Yes
    Size: 15.4lb

    Fresh Step Lightweight Febreze Scented Clumping Clay Cat Litter is another litter that includes an air freshener to help mask bad smells. Opinions are somewhat divided on these litters. Some appreciate the job the air freshener does of masking ammonia and other bad smells, but it can prove too strong and artificial for others.

    The litter uses lightweight clay, which means that you need less weight of litter to last the same amount of time. It also means that the pieces are very light. Your cat will kick it out of the tray when covering up a mess, and it will track through the house and potentially get caught in your cat’s hair, especially if you have a long-haired breed. The clay does a good job of quickly clumping and Fresh Step claims that it is 99.9% dust-free. It is reasonably priced.

    Like most clay products, Fresh Steps is definitely not dust-free, and it will create clouds when filling the tray and when kitty is covering up. The smell of the Febreze is strong but still doesn’t fully mask the ammonia scent, and your cat will carry the litter on its paws, transferring it to furniture and carpets.

    Pros
    • Reasonable price
    • Smells of Febreze
    Cons
    • Very dusty
    • Easily tracked
    • Strong smell of Febreze doesn’t mask ammonia

    8. Feline Pine Scoop Unscented Clumping Wood Cat Litter

    Feline Pine Scoop Unscented Clumping Wood Cat Litter

    Material: Grass
    Clumping: Yes
    Size: 20lbs

    Feline Pine Scoop Unscented Clumping Wood Cat Litter is made from natural pine and is 100% natural. It is unscented although you can expect a mild smell of fresh pine to waft around the litter when it is poured and when your cat scratches over its business. The pine clumps naturally and the manufacturer claims that it offers a dust-free experience.

    Although it is largely dust-free, the litter itself is basically just sawdust which will get everywhere and may cause issues with cats (and people) that suffer from respiratory problems. Some of the pieces can be quite sharp, which means that sensitive cats may dislike and even avoid using it, and it barely clumps at all, so you will be left scooping up pieces of soggy sawdust, rather than hard clumps of contained cat business.

    Pros
    • Cheap
    • 100% natural pine
    Cons
    • Doesn’t clump at all
    • Some sharp pieces
    • Very fine pieces

    9. Frisco Natural Unscented Tofu Clumping Cat Litter

    Material: Tofu
    Clumping: Yes
    Size: 7lb

    Tofu isn’t the first material people think of when considering buying cat litter. Processed soybeans are popular in cooking because they absorb cooking juices and take on the flavor of other ingredients. In theory, these same properties should make it a great cat litter that absorbs moisture and retains smells, without having them spread.

    Frisco Natural Unscented Tofu Clumping Cat Litter is made from soy fibers, which are also naturally lightweight. It is unscented, clumps naturally, and Frisco claims that it is dust-free.

    Although it has less dust than a lot of other litters, the Frisco Tofu Clumping Cat Litter is expensive and doesn’t last that long, so works out even more expensive. Also, it doesn’t do a great job of preventing smells from escaping, and there is a very real risk that your cats will want to play in and eat the litter, rather than use it for its actual purpose.

    Pros
    • Renewable material
    • Dust free
    Cons
    • Doesn’t mask smell well
    • Very expensive
    • Cats may eat the litter

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    Buyer’s Guide: Selecting The Best Lightweight Cat Litter

    There are seemingly endless options when it comes to choosing a cat litter, from the material used to features like dust-free and the choice of clumping or non-clumping. Lightweight cat litter is one option that is commonly seen and may benefit you and your cat family. Read on for more features and to find out how to ensure you choose the best cat litter for your household.

    Benefits Of Lightweight Cat Litter:

    • Easier To Carry and Pour – A 10-pound bag of lightweight cat litter weighs the same as a 10-pound bag of standard litter. But a tray of lightweight litter weighs less, which means that you can buy a lighter bag to last a month or several months. Lighter bags are not only easier to carry but are also easier to lift and pour into the litter tray.
    • Easier To Clean and Scoop – Once the tray is full of litter, it will also be lighter, so moving it around or picking it up to empty it will be considerably easier. Even scooping the soiled litter should be easier with lightweight material like corn kernels, as a pose to a hefty material like clay.
    • Less Waste Weight – When you empty the litter bag into the bin, it takes up a lot of weight. If you have multiple trays for several cats, it can account for much of the weight of the waste bin. If a lightweight litter weighs 50% as much as a clay litter, it makes a big difference when you’re lugging the waste bag around.
    • Plenty Of Options – Lightweight litters come in all forms, even including lightweight clay litter. The range of materials means that there are scented and unscented, clumping, and non-clumping litters. In fact, the features of lightweight litter are just as varied as standard litter.

    Lightweight Cat Litter Drawbacks:

    • More Easily Kicked About – Some cats are extremely vigorous when it comes time to cover up their business. They scratch, kick, and fling the litter particles about. With heavier litter, one or two pieces might make their way out of the tray. With lightweight options, the particles can be kicked further, which increases the likelihood that you will have to sweep or hoover up the local area once your cat has finished. Using a mat or some other means of catching the stray litter can help.
    • Tracks More – Lightweight litter particles are usually smaller and weigh less, than the heavier alternatives. They are more likely to get caught between your cat’s claws and paws, and they can even become entangled in the fur. Once your cat then walks on the carpet, rolls on the floor, or lays on the furniture, these bits of litter are knocked off. The phenomenon is known as tracking and it can be really annoying, as well as potentially unhygienic.
    • Some Can Be Very Dusty – Another potential problem with any cat litter is that it is dusty. Some materials, including heavy clay, naturally give off dust. Lighter materials, like wood shavings that are essentially just sawdust, are not only dusty but the particles themselves can float around. Litter dust is not only unpleasant but can cause breathing problems in cats and owners with asthma and other respiratory problems. Dust clouds are usually at their most potent when pouring the litter in the tray, but also when your cat kicks the litter about.
    kitten on cat litter box
    Image Credit By: Sharaf Maksumov, Shutterstock

    What Else to Look For When Buying Lightweight Litter

    There really are a lot of cat litters on the market, and you aren’t limited to a choice of one lightweight product. Other important factors to consider when buying this type of litter include:

    Litter Material

    Before commercial cat litter was really a thing, litter boxes were lined with paper and filled with sand. This combination gave the cat somewhere to pee and poop and was easier to clean up than clearing the floor. Some commercial litters use similar materials, although in more advanced formulae, there is a baffling array of options now out there. Some of the most common and noteworthy include:

    • Clay – Clay pellets can be large or small, but they all (including those that claim to be dust-free) tend to have some dust. Some can give off huge clouds of noxious litter dust. Clay does clump well, and it tends to be inexpensive, but by its very nature, it is heavy and when wet, it can form a solid layer of concrete against the walls and the bottom of the litter tray. There are some lightweight clay litters. These are lighter than standard clay but may still prove heavier than the alternatives.
    • Sand – It’s rare to get cat litter that is just a bag of sand. More common is a silica gel, which is made of the crystals of sand found in quartz. This is lightweight, naturally absorbs moisture, and it clumps. It is also expensive, however, and can form the same cement-like texture of clay.
    • Wood – Pine is the most commonly used wood for cat litter. It has a natural smell, is lightweight, and it doesn’t tend to be as dusty as clay. It is also considered more environmentally friendly, but it does track, and the fine pellets are not as dust-free as manufacturers try to have you believe.
    • Corn – Corn clumps reasonably well and it does a good job of mopping up and absorbing moisture. It is also natural. While it does clump, it is not as effective as other materials, and there are some concerns over mold growth.
    • Grass – Grass seeds are a less common material. The seeds are dried, look similar to pine litter, and clump well. However, they also stick in your cat’s paws and fur and this type of litter tends to be bad for tracking.
    • Paper – Paper is a traditional litter material, but the modern equivalent is usually made from recycled paper crushed into pellet form. It is very soft, so popular with kitten owners and for cats that have sensitive paws. It doesn’t tend to produce much dust, either, and it has a good level of absorbency. The real problem with recycled paper is that it doesn’t clump, and you may be left with pools or soggy, urine-soaked, paper, at the bottom of the litter tray.
    • Tofu – Yes, that Tofu! Tofu is naturally absorbent and billed as being good at absorbing aromas. In reality, it is expensive and doesn’t do a particularly good job of getting rid of the smell of ammonia. But it is a renewable material and scented versions may soon become available that do a better job as cat litter. Owners have reported that their cats like to play in and eat this type of cat litter, however.

    No matter what kind of litter you use, bad smells often linger. That's where an effective litter additive like Hepper's Advanced Bio-Enzyme Cat Litter Deodorizer can make a big difference.

    Hepper Advanced Bio-Enzyme Cat Litter Deodorizer Powder
    • Bio Enzymatic Cat Litter Freshener - Smart formulation uses natural ingredients eliminating cat...
    • Save Money - Stuff for cats isn’t the cheapest. With this litter box odor eliminator, you’ll...
    • Every Litter, Every Surface - Are you afraid this additive won’t work on your litter? Fear not!...

    This biodegradable deodorizer is fragrance-free and safe for all ages of cats and types of litter. It uses bio-enzymes to naturally get rid of odors and help your litter last longer. 

    At Pet Keen, we've admired Hepper for many years, and decided to take a controlling ownership interest so that we could benefit from the outstanding designs of this cool company!

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    Conclusion

    Cat litter is an essential purchase in any cat household, and there are many options in a wide variety of price brackets. Lightweight litter is easier to carry, pour, and scoop up, but you still need to ensure that the litter you buy offers the features you need. To help you choose the right lightweight litter we have included reviews of ten of the best that we could find.

    Our choice as the best overall lightweight litter is Pioneer Pet SmartCat All Natural Clumping Litter, which is made from grass seeds, clumps quickly, and has minimal dust, although it is expensive. A cheaper, but still high-quality alternative, is World’s Best Unscented Clumping Corn Cat Litter because it is another litter made from non-traditional materials. This time it is made from compressed corn kernels.


    Featured Image Credit: Axel Bueckert, Shutterstock

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