Published June 2014  •  Updated March 2024  •  Read Time: 9 minutes
Malachite is a gorgeous bright green mineral that is very popular with the healing crystal community.  It is found all over the world, as a secondary mineral that grows on Copper deposits.  The vast majority of the Malachite sold on the market is from the Katanga, the copper belt of the Democratic Republic of the Congo in central Africa.  This is problematic from an ethical sourcing perspective and so collectors are strongly advised to look for Malachite from other locations.  Malachite is a wonderful stone for transformation and self-confidence.  It encourages us to open our heart to love and adventure, and for our mind to always stay curious.

Malachite malachite

Malachite Meaning

Spiritual Healing Properties

Malachite has a bold energy which ignites within us a desire for positive personal transformation and adventure. It helps us to recognize our own gifts and to honor our dreams by doing whatever is necessary to make them a reality. It amplifies our energy and can be used to explore other worlds, both external and internal, allowing us to gain important insights and open our hearts to the power of unconditional love. Malachite encourages us to take more risks and be bold, while also offering us psychic and environmental protection. It grounds and calms our energetic body and cleanses the Chakras. It also amplifies nature affinities and attracts devas and other nature spirits and guides.

Metaphysical Properties Malachite
Chakra Solar Plexus and Heart
Element Fire
Numerology 9
Zodiac Scorpio and Capricorn

Emotional Healing Properties

Malachite helps us to be more confident and friendly. It opens our hearts to love, and is especially helpful for anyone who has been hurt by a previous romantic relationship and is afraid to love again. Malachite shows us that love is awesome and being wide-open to love doesn’t mean we are also inviting in pain and future injury. It helps remove the trauma of emotional pain and disentangles it from the beautiful reality of love. Being around this gem, we feel our emotions much more intensely, however Malachite also helps us to see these emotions clearly and understand their root cause. Malachite blasts through victim/abuser mentality, forcing us to be honest with ourselves and others, and to make the necessary changes so we can live peacefully and happily. It is a particularly good stone for anyone who is shy and afraid of confrontation. It teaches us to claim our rightful place in the world and to love boldly without reserve.

Mental Healing Properties

Malachite awakens within us a thirst for knowledge. It helps us to quickly understand new concepts and to absorb and remember new information. Malachite helps us to make quick, good decisions and act decisively. When needed, it also helps us to speak up and voice necessary criticism and to stand-up in the name of justice and compassion. It also helps us to be better observers and more appreciative of aesthetics and beauty. Malachite is very helpful to artists and other creative types who have an abundance of ideas, but struggle to act upon them or finish projects. It encourages creative passion and provides grounding so that we further explore our ideas and use our powers constructively.

Physical Healing Properties

Malachite is recommended for anyone seeking a greater vitality in life.  It encourages us to keep moving and to make physical self-care a priority.  In particular, it encourages us to do activities that encourage flexibility, strength, and relaxation.  It’s a fun stone to have in a more active yoga session, since it encourages us to push ourselves while also being kind to ourselves.  Malachite is a good talisman for treating inflammation, including arthritis, rheumatism and other joint pains.  It is also a lovely talisman to take into labor to encourage a quick and easy delivery.

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Malachite Mineralogy

Where does come from?

Malachite is mined in copper deposits in numerous locations worldwide.  The majority of the Malachite sold in the healing crystal industry comes from the Katanga copper belt in the Democratic Republic of the Congo.

Other notable Malachite include: Argentina, Australia, Austria, Belgium, Brazil, Canada, Chile, China, Czech Republic, Egypt, France, Germany, Great Britain, Greece, Hungary, Iran, Ireland, Italy, Kazakhstan, Laos, Mexico, Morocco, Namibia, New Zealand, Norway, Peru, Poland, Russia, Slovakia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, United States, and Zambia

Mining and Treatments

Malachite is mined near Copper quarries and in relationship to their primary stone. It can be found as rounded nodules, stalactites, and, rarely, encrusted slabs. Because the brilliant green color is often visible on the surface of Copper deposits, Malachite “stains” are often the first indicator to a prospector that they have found a new Copper deposit or vein.

Most Malachite is natural, enhanced only by cutting and polishing.  There is however some fake malachite too.  It is typically made of plastic, glass, or clay and resembles Malachite from the DR Congo.  If you see a polished Malachite with swirls and circles, it’s almost certainly real.  If you see a Malachite with irregular stripes, it’s most likely real.  If it has uniform stripes and two really distinct colors (bright green and darkest green/black stripes) it might be a fake.

Malachite Placeholder
Malachite

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Mineral Family

Malachite belongs to the Carbonite mineral family.  These minerals are an important part of the Earth’s crust and are located in sedimentary, metamorphic, and igneous rocks. Carbonates are minerals which contain the carbonate group CO3 as their basic structural unit. They form in a trigonal system with one Carbon atom centrally located between 3 Oxygen atoms.

Malachite’s energy works well with its family – other Carbonite minerals.  Try it in combination with Aragonite, Azurite, Calcite, Magnesite, Rhodochrosite, and Stichtite.

Malachite Formation and Crystal Associates

Malachite is a rare secondary, copper-derive mineral. It is formed when carbon-dioxide-rich water reacts with subsurface copper ores.  The carbonic acid in the waters dissolves some of the copper, which is then transported to another geochemical environment.  If the new location has a hotter temperature, the water will evaporate leaving trace minerals behind which can then form into Azurite and other minerals.  Later on, if Azurite becomes exposed to the open air and allowed to weather, it will transform into green Malachite.

Malachite’s energy works well with its “friends” – crystal associates formed in the same geological environment.  Try it in combination with Azurite, Chrysocolla, and Copper.  Try also Azurite Malachite

Mineralogy Malachite
Chemical Formula CuCO3(Oh)2
Cleavage Perfect
Color Green
Crystal System Monoclinic
Form/Habit Massive, botryoidal
Fracture Subconchoidal to uneven, brittle
Hardness – Mohs Scale 3.5-4
Luminescence None
Luster Vitreous
Mineral Family Carbonate
Specific Gravity 3.25-4.1
Streak Green
Transparency Translucent to opaque

Is Malachite toxic?

In many books and websites about healing crystals there are references to Malachite being a toxic gem.  Some sources will say it’s dangerous in elixirs or to wear as jewelry.  Oftentimes, people are cautioned to keep it away from children and pets.  Depending on the source, the danger level may change depending on whether the Malachite is rough/raw vs polished, as well as whether it’s wet or dry.  So how toxic is it in reality?

Malachite is a copper-derived mineral.  Chemically speaking, there’s nothing particularly toxic about it.  Copper is the main metal used in water pipes which means we are exposed to copper-water on a routine basis.  Alternative medicine often touts the many benefits of wearing copper bracelets with the intention of absorbing copper particles through the skin, as an antidote to copper deficiency in the body.  Moreover, Malachite has been used in cosmetics for thousands of years and that tradition continues today.

Malachite’s main danger is to miners and polishers who may find themselves exposed to fine Malachite-dust.  Dust, from any mineral, will irritate the lungs and long-term exposure can cause serious problems.  The finer and lighter the dust, the easier it is to breath in.  As a result, polishers tend to be at greater risk than miners.  In good lapidaries, polishers will wear protective masks to guard against dust in the air.  In addition, the polishing discs are kept wet so that most of the dust sticks to it, rather than going into the air.  However, Malachite-dust will leech copper particles into the water, which can then be absorbed through the skin.  After a few hours polishing Malachite, workers have reported a metallic taste on their tongue like they were sucking on a penny.  Long-term exposure will lead to a build-up of copper in the body, which can potentially pose a threat to the liver.

History of Malachite

Malachite has long historical traditions, dating back to the very dawn of history. As such it was included in virtually all ancient, medieval, and modern lapidaries, texts describing gemstones and their powers. Malachite’s name comes from the Greek “mallow,” the name of a common plant whose leafy color is similar to the stone.

Malachite was first mined in the Sinai, near the modern day Suez Canal, as early as 5000 BCE. This brilliant green stone is relatively soft and can be carved easily or crumbled into a powder and mixed with water, oil, or wax to produce green paint. Malachite was very highly prized among the ancient Egyptians, who used it for cosmetics, specifically eyeliner, as well as using it in paintings and for pottery glazes and colored glass. The Egyptians carved Malachite into amulets and decorative items, with well-known powers. Malachite was believed to protect the owner from evil, to help infants sleep quietly, and to keep poisonous animals away. Such was the high esteem of Malachite in ancient Egypt that it was also linked to the gods, specifically the sun god Horus. Malachite was the “Green bed of the Sun” or “Horus on his green.” The dwelling place of the gods was occasionally described as being “near Malachite lake(s).”

Malachite’s reputation as a protective and healing stone remained strong throughout the ancient and medieval eras. In various medicinal texts and lapidaries, Malachite was recommended to stop fainting spells, prevent hernias, soothe colic in babies, and relieve muscle spasms and cardiac pains. In the 1502 Speculum Lapidar, the author, Italian physician Camillus Leonardus, strongly recommended that Malachite be hung from cradles to protect the infant from both physical and spiritual harm. Malachite is often found with bands, stripes and loops in varying shades of green, occasionally forming natural “eyes.” These Malachite eyes are particularly prized throughout the Mediterranean world, where they have been used for centuries to keep the “Evil Eye” at bay.

During the 19th century a huge deposit of Malachite was found in the Ural Mountains of Russia. Giant slabs, weighting as much as 56 tons for a single block, were extracted and sold to Western Europe or kept to decorate the palaces and churches of Mother Russia. Some of the great “crystal wonders of the world” include Malachite from this deposit. For example, the Malachite pillars found inside St. Isaac’s Cathedral in St. Petersburg. Construction on this enormous church began in 1818 and continued for almost 40 years, and among the interior decorations are over 16 varieties of Marble and Granite, as well as huge quantities of Lapis Lazuli. However, the most impressive aspect of the Cathedral is the eight massive Malachite pillars flanking icons painted on the wall behind the altar.

Similarly impressive is the so-called “Malachite Room” in the Winter Palace of St. Petersburg, designed during the same period as St. Isaac’s Cathedral. The room was intended to be a drawing room for Empress Alexandra Feodorovna (also called Charlotte of Prussia, 1825-1860), the wife of Czar Nicolas I. Her private room features pilasters, columns, mantelpieces, doors, and sumptuous vases all carved from Malachite. White walls, golden gilt decorations and crimson curtains tied the rest of the room together in an opulent show of wealth and power.

Today, the finest Malachite comes from the Copper mines of the Democratic Republic of the Congo. In recent decades, the DRC’s mining industry has been closely linked to rebel groups who sell or tax the “conflict minerals” (mostly tin, tungsten, and gold) and use the profits to destabilize the region. In 2010, the United States passed the Dood Frank Act which among other things required minerals from the DRC to be labeled accordingly and come with paperwork showing what steps were taken to ensure that the minerals did not fund paramilitary groups. Since the Act passed, the DRC’s international mineral exports have fallen by more than half. The drop is so large that many of the large mines in the Eastern Congo have since been declared “conflict free” by political leaders.

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