Othonna cremnophila is an erect thick, fleshy, stemmed shrublet with leaves crowded at the ends of branches. It usually exhibits a squat or compact, but non-pendent, ascending growth. The solitary, short, thickset, main stem (caudex) forms markedly abbreviated and sparsely branching shoots. The cylindrical stems are covered with a dense, white, woolly layer of trichomes and a powdery bloom which help to prevent moisture loss in the dry cliff-face habitat. The large obovate serrated leaves and the pale yellow flower petals are the distinguishing features Othonna cremnophila, and the seeds remaining 1 to 3 days in the burst capsules. This species is most interesting, however, in being one of only four Othonna species that makes its home solely on cliffs. The others include two summer-deciduous plants from Richtersveld National Park, Othonna triplinervia and Othonna armiana, and a pendent evergreen species, Othonna capensis.