Shell solid, opaque, regularly conical, with six or seven slightly tumid whorls, apex rather blunt. Sutures shallow, slightly channelled; last whorl with spiral striae, often restricted to and more obvious at base. Aperture ear-shaped, with shallow anal sinus where outer lip abuts tangentially to last whorl, peristome somewhat thickened; umbilicus occluded by inner lip, though umbilical groove remains (C. trifasciata-drawing).
Up to 4 x 2 mm.
Commonly yellow-brown, with three spiral brown bands on last whorls, one or two on whorls of spire; var. rupestris uniform cream or white; uniform black or dark purple shells occasionally found.
Body of typical rissoid pattern; mantle edge smooth, with short pallial tentacle on the right; metapodial tentacle short, broadly triangular not reaching edge of foot.
Common in silty crevices or under stones from MTL downwards. Var. rupestris is confined to crevices and appears to favour exposed shores; it does not appear to mix with banded shells.
Distributed from Bay of Biscay to west coast of Norway. On Channel and British North Sea coasts; absent from continental shores of the southern North Sea (Distr. C. trifasciata).