Which Crypto is Used for NFTs – Best NFT Cryptocurrency

Until, and including now, NFTs can only be bought using cryptocurrency.

NFTs can’t be bought using any cryptocurrency, they have to be bought using the specific crypto as shown by the NFT project.

So which crypto is used for NFTs?

Ethereum, Solana and Matic are the main three cryptocurrencies used for minting and buying NFTs. Ethereum and Matic are generally used on the OpenSea NFT marketplace, and Solana is used on the Solanart NFT platform. The most popular crypto for NFT buying is Ethereum, followed by Solana and then Matic.

Although these three cryptos (ETH, SOL and MATIC) can be used to buy NFTs, in this article we will look further into which crypto is the best, the most popular and which carries the highest gas fees.

Ethereum Crypto NFTs

Ethereum Crypto NFTs

The Ethereum cryptocurrency is one of the oldest, and highest value cryptos on the market, only second in value per coin to Bitcoin.

It rode on the coattails of the surge in Bitcoin as other investors took to seek out new cryptocurrencies to invest in, with their hope and intention of seeing the same surge in price as Bitcoin did once BTC became too expensive.

Although Ethereum is trading at less than 10% the price of Bitcoin, it made many investors very wealthy.

Ethereum’s Proof of Work network concept took to the NFT industry well, and with OpenSea – the most popular and most valuable NFT trading platform – primarily trading in Ethereum, it meant its dominance was inevitable.

The frustration for many investors with Ethereum are the high gas fees to mint and trade. It can cost from $60 to $300+ to mint an NFT with Ethereum depending on demand. The average Ethereum gas fee to mint an NFT is $116.

This compares to just a couple of dollars minting with Solana (we will come on to Solana shortly).

The reason Ethereum is so popular is due to its almost exclusive use within OpenSea, and also because the most popular and highest value NFTs on the market are on OpenSea – NFT collections such as Crypto Punks and Bored Ape Yacht Club.

NFTs are given almost a different ‘higher worth’ status being displayed and available on OpenSea rather than the Solana based platforms, hence why the majority of NFT collections are minted and shown on OpenSea – and why Ethereum is still the best and most popular crypto to buy NFTs.

Ethereum 2.0 is due out in 2022 and with it a change in method from Proof of Work to Proof of Stake. It is unknown as of yet whether this will help drive down the cost of gas fees, probably not at least in the short term, but certainly longer term there will be pressure to reduce fees to prevent investors abandoning the OpenSea ship in favor of lower gas fees charged with Solana and displayed on Solanart.

Solana Crypto NFTs

Solana Crypto NFTs

Solana launched in April 2019.

It’s almost a baby in age compared to BTC and ETH, but it has set itself apart as a smart network capable of being used to mint and trade NFTs with faster and more transactions than the limited Ethereum network, and very little gas fee.

If both Ethereum and Solana started again, Solana would almost certainly become the leading NFT trading cryptocurrency.

Solana is already conducting transactions using the Proof of Stake method, which is where the Ethereum network is headed. This has meant incredibly low gas fees by comparison, but whether the might of the Ethereum network can offer something similar is yet to be seen.

If you would really like a technical bedtime read, here is the Solana Whitepaper which will help explain why it is so suited to mint, buy and sell NFTs.

Some investors have swapped over to trading in Solana based NFTs to avoid the ever-climbing Ethereum gas fees, which alone is helping to boost its market, share and status in the NFT community.

Even celebrities such as Mike Tyson and Melania Trump have posted Twitter messages showing their support for Solana traded NFTs.

The Solana cryptocurrency has also been given a boost by the investment in to Solanart, which has driven the value of the company to $1.3billion.

Where money is invested at this level, other investor heads are turned, and attention is given.

It is hard to see whether Solana will gain enough momentum to take the crown from Ethereum. A lot rides on Ethereum 2.0, but with Solana NFTs around 20%-30% cheaper to buy than Ethereum based NFTs due to lower minting costs and much lower gas fees – it is easier to make a return on investment with Solana NFTs than Ethereum NFTs.

Polygon Matic Crypto NFTs

Polygon MATIC Crypto NFTs

The Polygon network has been trading for longer than people initially realize.

It began during October 2017, although the MATIC token and rebrand happened in 2021, so it is the most recent of the three cryptos in this guide.

The Polygon network also uses the Proof of Stake methodology rather than Proof of Work, which helps to reduce gas fees.

The Proof of Stake method means high volume holders of the crypto can stake their MATIC to validate transactions on the blockchain in return for a gas fee.

This method is used by both Polygon and Solana.

The Proof of Work method requires miners working on the transaction using energy to validate the transaction on the blockchain.

This is one of the reasons Proof of Work fees are higher, but the often much higher demand for transactions on a Proof of Work network than miners leads to a gas price war, and sees NFT investors outbidding each other willing to pay and higher gas fee than the person before.

Miners can choose which transaction to work on first in the queue and they will always, of course, choose the transaction with the higher bid price.

The mighty OpenSea network is now allowing NFT collections that mint and trade using Polygon MATIC on to its platform.

Over the long term this could see lower gas fees, along with listing on the most popular NFT trading platform, a winning combination.

Best NFT Crypto for NFT Buying

As each NFT collection launches, the crypto used is set by the NFT collection founders.

Therefore, if an NFT is wanted within a specific NFT collection then the best crypto for buying the NFT will of course be the one it is traded in.

It can’t be purchased or minted with another.

If though your options are open, and you wish to invest in an amount of one crypto for NFT investing the consideration is whether to choose more popular NFT collections but higher gas fees (Ethereum) or often less popular NFT collections at mint and low gas fees (Solana).

Polygon is the riskier crypto to go all in on at the moment, as only a small percentage of NFT launches are trading in MATIC. Only up to 5% of launches per day.

This could set to change as its benefits are better realized.

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