The present work aimed at evaluating the toxicity and genotoxicity of two organic (vesicles composed of sodium dodecyl sulphate/didodecyl dimethylammonium bromide-SDS/DDAB and of monoolein and sodium oelate-Mo/NaO) and four inorganic (titanium oxide-TiO₂, silicon titanium-TiSiO₄, Lumidot-CdSe/ZnS, and gold nanorods) nanoparticles (NP), suspended in two aqueous media (Milli Q water and American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM) hardwater), to the bacteria Vibrio fischeri (Microtox test) and Salmonella typhimurium-his⁻ (Ames test with strains TA98 and TA100). Aiming a better understanding of these biological responses physical and chemical characterization of the studied NP suspensions was carried out. Results denoted a high aggregation state of the NP in the aqueous suspensions, with the exception of SDS/DDAB and Mo/NaO vesicles, and of nanogold suspended in Milli Q water. This higher aggregation was consistent with the low values of zeta potential, revealing the instability of the suspensions. Regarding toxicity data, except for nano TiO₂, the tested NP significantly inhibited bioluminescence of V. fischeri. Genotoxic effects were only induced by SDS/DDAB and TiO₂ for the strain TA98. A wide range of toxicity responses was observed for the six tested NP, differing by more than 5 orders of magnitude, and suggesting different modes of action of the tested NP.