As the title states: Sand Filtration can obtain amazing results.
I have been incorporating sand filtration features into my ESC designs and have been able to avoid costly products by using simple sand. It is important to note that fine river sand will gum up quite quickly and become almost imprevious; whereas slightly coarser washed sand is the stuff to use. Sand #20 is the official name of the sand that will give you the best results.
By creating sand core berms in swales and sediment ponds, or by packing sand on the upstream side of any check dam, will work magic. It usually takes a few passes through sand media before the turbidity will come below allowable discharge limits; therefore, plan on having two or three sand features the water must pass through before discharging. See the following link to a presentation given on this subject: http://www.escpnw.com/uploads/ESC_Presentation.pdf
All sites should incorporate washed sand in their ESC design. It is proven to work, and it is cost effective, yet I still rarely see it being used on construction sites.