Malachite Stone, Meaning & Beautiful Jewelry Pieces
Malachite stone is known as the stone of “transformation”. It is a stone of a beautiful, lush rich, green color and has beautiful verdant tones. It looks very regal, royal and important.
The stones aren’t solid green, however, and they aren’t even all the same shade of green. The stones are grizzled with grey, black, or white striations, which make each stone unique.
It won’t fade over time or when exposed to light. Industries prefer using it as a pigment for dyes as it is a highly sought after coloring agent.
It is a bright green, copper carbonate hydroxide mineral. Despite its softness, it is able to withstand a high polish which makes it absolutely wonderful for jewelry.
Malachite can also be made into things like goblets and candlesticks. So, if green is your favorite color, then malachite jewelry may just be your new best friend!
History of Malachite Stone
The word, malachite, was taken from Middle English (melochites), Middle French (melochite), Greek (malochitis lithos) and Latin (molochitis). It means “mallow-green stone”. It was given its name because of the resemblance to the leaves of the mallow plant.
3,800 years ago, it was heavily mined in Britain, at the Great Orme Mines. It was easily mined because it is so shallow. They used stone and bone tools to extract the malachite. Eventually, it was discovered malachite could be used to make copper.
By 600 B.C., when mining ended, 1,760 tons of copper was made from the stone that was mined. It was one of the first ores used to make copper. Malachite is now used as a gemstone and ornamental stone for sculpting and jewelry making.
In ancient Egyptian hieroglyphics, they describe Malachite as being necessary for their deities’ existence. They made Malachite amulets to ward off evil. They engraved the sun, in the stone, to protect the wearer from evil spirits.
It was also thought to protect the children. The Ancient Greeks and Romans made sculptures and vases out of it. In the Middle Ages, It was used as a cure for vomiting.
Malachite has been highly prized by many cultures and civilizations. It was used in protective amulets in ancient times. But the people who revered it most highly were the 19th Century Russian royals.
With it, they made dining sets, vases, extravagant sculptures and even paneled rooms with it! You can actually see a paneled room, in the world-famous Hermitage Museum of St. Petersburg, Russia. It is called the “Malachite Room”.
Formation and Harvesting
Because it is so found at such shallow depths of the earth, it is easily mined. In the beginning, it was mined in Egypt and Israel. Archeologists have estimated it to be mined and smelted into copper, from the Israeli Timna Valley for over 3,000 years.
It was also aggressively mined until about the 1800s in the Ural Mountains of Russia. Today, it is found in the USA (specifically Arizona), Congo, South Africa, Chile, Australia, Russia, Romania, Chile, and Zaire.
Malachite is often found in fractures, caverns, and cavities of the rock. It also exists between the grains and granules of porous rock. You will also see it formed as stalactites in underground cavities. Sometimes, but rarely, it forms as a crystal.
Conditions have to be extremely favorable for this process to occur. It is often found with azurite, calcite, and goethite. The properties of all three are amazingly similar, except malachite is a vibrant shade of green.
It is considered a “secondary mineral” and is created by a chemical reaction between minerals that have already formed. For example, it may form when water with carbon dioxide in it, interacts with a pre-existing rock with copper in it.
This is how the swirling, concentric patterns are formed. The bands of color are reflective of the various amounts of change in the mineral content.
Various Grades and Color
Malachite gets its color from copper and it comes in various shades of green. Banding and eyes of the stone make it a very popular gem to use for jewelry. It is, however, very sensitive to heat and reacts with weak acids.
These, and the fact that it is a softer mineral limit its use. It is 3.5 to 4 on the Mohs scale of hardness. This makes it really susceptible to scrapes and scratches.
Gem grade malachite forms a fuzz in the stone when exposed to the cold and it’s quite stunning when seen under bright light. This quality isn’t exhibited in any other green material. On the opposite end of the spectrum, its reproductions are formed from polymer and ceramic.
Wax is often used on it to fill small voids and improve its luster. It is often produced synthetically to make jewelry and small sculptures. You can usually tell a poorly made synthetic counterpart; its unnatural in color and stabilized with resins, or has the surface polished with wax.
Better synthetics have banding, eyes and unnatural geometry. When malachite forms a crystal, it is a bright green color and translucent. It appears to have a glasslike luster.
While all malachite is green, the shades vary. It ranges from pastel to bright green. You can also find it in such a dark green it almost looks black.
Finer quality malachite is used to make amulets and bracelets, while stones of lesser quality, is used to fill the natural voids of malachite. This makes it an inlay material.
How Much are Malachite stones Worth?
Malachite is very abundant. It is not rare, making it a modestly priced gem. Pieces worth more exhibit distinctive patterns, a “cat’s eye” effect (known as chatoyancy), and have unusual shapes.
The “cat’s eye” effect is considered a phenomenon and rarer resulting in a higher price. Chatoyancy is a band of reflected light that moves just beneath the surface, making it look like a cat’s eye.
Typically in the gemstone world, the purer the specimen, the higher it costs. With malachite, this is not true. When it is mixed with other colorful copper minerals, they generally command higher prices than pure stones.
Caring for Malachite Stones
Because it is so soft and brittle, it must be treated with care. Ultrasonic and steam cleaning aren’t recommended. You can safely use malachite in brooches, earrings, and pendants since these items aren’t likely to experience mistreatment.
But bracelets and rings experience a lot of wear and tear, so it’s not recommended to use these pieces every day. They can get bumped and scuffed too easily.
To clean malachite, just use soapy water (not hot) and a soft cloth. Rinse well to remove the soapy residue.
Always remove this jewelry before participating in sports, physical activities, cleaning, and exercising. To store malachite, put them in a velvet pouch or a fabric-lined jewelry box.
It is a very porous stone and will absorb liquids. That’s what it’s essential to remove any malachite jewelry before doing dishes and using chemicals.
Biblically, it was one of the 12 precious stones used to create the breastplate of the priests. In Exodus 39:10 (LEB), it mentions malachite as being one of those stones.
It is also mentioned in Exodus 28:18 (LEB). There is also some speculation that The Amalekite people of the Bible derived their name from it. The relation is unlikely, but the relationship has tried to be proven.
In ancient Egypt, the color green was associated with new life and fertility, the power of death and resurrection. The Egyptians believed that life after death was much like life on earth, but held no pain or suffering. This eternal paradise was called the “Field of Malachite”.
The Power and Properties of Malachite
It is a metaphysical stone, or one considered to have transcendent properties. This means it has power beyond comprehension. It is considered to be a stone of intention, balance, manifestation, and abundance.
In Indian culture, malachite influences either physically, mentally or emotionally, the chakras. Chakras are the centers of spiritual power in the body and are located from the base of the spine to the top of the head and each is responsible for a different area of the body.
Malachite especially helps to stimulate the heart and throat chakras. It is said, if you meditate with it, you can cleanse and purify all of the chakras.
These days, depression seems as rampant as the common cold, but malachite’s healing properties are thought to ward against the everyday blues. It acts kind of like an anti-depressant.
It is referred to, in the healing world, as the “warrior stone.” It is thought to guard the heart and we all know, sometimes, our hearts take a terrible beating.
It allows healing energy to flow through your heart and give you spiritual renewal and a sense of vitality. The warrior nature of the stone absorbs pollution, shields against radioactivity and purifies the body.
It is also said to be useful in minimizing menstrual cramps and childbirth pains. It has also been used to treat: arthritis, swollen joints, asthma, torn muscles, and broken bones.
While malachite is a very soft stone, the extreme beauty and richness of its color have made it popular for jewelry throughout the ages. It can be made into rings, necklaces, bracelets, and earrings.
For centuries, people have worn it for its healing properties. Today, the same thing occurs but many simply love it for its lush verdant color.
Who Wears, or Has Worn Malachite Stone?
Lady Tz’akbu Ajaw of the Mayan city Palenque on southern Mexico wore a malachite mask for her burial. It was discovered in 1994 and its estimated date is 600 to 700 AD.
Ancient Egyptians wore Malachite and carved the stone for ornaments!
You don’t have to be centuries old to wear it. Several celebs have been seen wearing it including Anne Hathaway, Kim Kardashian, Debra Messing, Camilla Duchess of Cornwall, and Darby Scott, a famous jewelry designer, often creates malachite pieces.
But it can also be used for other famous decorating items. “The Tazza” is a large malachite vase and it’s one of the largest malachite pieces in North America. It was a gift from Tsar Nicholas II and is the prominent piece in the center of the room in the Linda Hall Library.
The stone was even used on the base of the FIFA (Federation of International Football Association) World cup Trophy.
While the stone may not be in the same rank and file as the diamond, it has an intriguing and rich history. It has been used to create jewelry since antiquity and was used as a pigment in green paint and even powdered cosmetics until about 1800. During the Victorian Age, it was revived and used in fine jewelry for the gentry and royalty.
It was discovered in In Tutankhamen’s Tomb in 1922 and the stone saw another revival in the roaring ’20s. Recently, malachite has again seen a surge of popularity.
That is why we decided to share with you some of our favorite malachite jewelry pieces!
Our Favorite Malacbhite Jewelry Picks
Before we share our picks, we strongly advise any malachite rings and bracelets be treated with extreme care. Due to the soft and porous nature of the stone, the jewelry should be removed before any extreme activities and household chores, then stored in a protective container.
Adabele Natural Gemstone Bracelet
If you just want to get your toes wet with malachite jewelry, this is a good starter piece. It is the perfect, extremely inexpensive bracelet. The stones are strung together with elastic, making it stretchy.
It has no metal and can be worn by children, women, and men. Depending on your wrist size you may be able to double it, making it look as though you’re wearing two bracelets.
This piece demonstrates the beautiful greens and blacks characterized by malachite. You are getting a one of a kind bracelet because no two malachite stones are the same. The colors and patterns are unique ensuring you a distinctive piece.
We like this bracelet with another black leather bracelet. It could be either plain or have some silver on it.
This bracelet is made from synthetic malachite and can be used for healing. Your chakras just may love you for it!
Chuvora Jewelry 925 Sterling Silver Natural Gemstone Earrings
These malachite dangle earrings are just simple and pretty. They are Indian inspired and have the exact right amount of dangle. They are natural gemstone and are simple, yet stylish.
The dangle is affixed to a thin wire, shaped like a hook that goes through the ear lobe. The stone is an oval shape and is set so it appears to be laying on its side. They are about an inch long.
They would be a definite asset to your jewelry collection and subtle addition to the outfit you’ll be wearing. We don’t, however, think a t-shirt is worthy of these earrings. But, anything from a blouse to evening wear is a hit.
The malachite in this set is nestled in 925 Sterling Silver and has the 925 stamp for authentication. They are nickel and lead-free.
The price of this set is slightly more expensive, but they make a great gift for the special someone in your life.
American West Sterling Silver Ring
This ring has a unique Native American/Spanish design and is sure to be a hit. This piece could be your go-to ring for that strappy sandal and beachy skirt outfit. Dressing down is not a problem with this ring.
This American West ring is made in New Mexico making it truly a western piece. The oval stone is set in the center of a .925 silver setting.
It is surrounded in a serrated, bezel setting and has a flower on each side with a rope style split shank. It has a slightly oxidized finish which gives it a vintage look.
Pair it with a turquoise and silver bracelet, or a bracelet by “American West” made with the same characteristics and you will have a killer look.
It’s a fantastic choice and you can’t go wrong with this ring.
AeraVida Floral Vine Silver Ring
This piece has, almost, an elflike quality to it. The floral vine malachite ring just may be one of our faves.
It is elegant and sophisticated, lovely and special, simple and classic. The ring is shaped like a tangle of sterling silver vines that wrap around the wearer’s finger. The leaves are teardrop-shaped malachite inlays.
This piece is so versatile you can wear it anywhere from the grocery store to a cocktail party and more. All this being said, don’t hesitate to wear this pretty ring with a t-shirt! If you’re going out on the town, we can see it being paired with other Celtic rings, or some simple silver designed rings.
We would go with a wide and white silver bracelet, keeping it simple so as to keep this ring the star of the show.
A pair of malachite earrings that mirror the same design would look stunning.
This ring isn’t cheap, but it isn’t out of your price range either. We think it’s a fantastic purchase and one you’ll love for a long time.
SPUNKYsoul Lotus New Beginnings Bracelet
The Lotus New Beginnings bracelet does double, maybe even triple duty. With a hippie or boho look, this piece is a combination of four beautiful and powerful crystal stone bracelets. All of the bracelets are beaded and can be worn separately or all together.
The malachite piece has six malachite stones with a lotus leaf attached to the middle. All of the bracelets are held together with elastic except for the Lava layer. It is a slider bracelet that you pull the strings open and closed.
In this bracelet, you will get a Malachite layer, a Lava layer, a Hematite layer, and an Onyx layer. Each layer has its own healing properties.
But, we are really excited because it’s also a diffuser bracelet!
Put a few drops of your favorite essential oil on the lava stones and take aromatherapy to a whole new level. Just wait a few minutes after applying the oil so it can soak in.
This bracelet comes with its own versatility. Wear one, two, or wear them all!
That Sums it Up
Malachite stone has been used as a pigment, for jewelry, and for sculpting. Without a doubt, it’s beautiful and stunning. Throughout history, malachite has had quite a reputation. It has remained part of the culture and elevated itself to almost super-status.
The awesome thing is it’s affordable to most everyone. Whether it’s for the extreme beauty or its healing properties, the malachite stone continues to be held in high regard to those who own it.
To keep it that way, you must remember it is a soft stone and great care needs to be taken when cleaning, repairing, or doing maintenance on it.
Green is the color of malachite, not just the color of money! It is very versatile and it is very wearable. When wearing malachite jewelry, you may feel it balancing your disposition and evening out those highs and lows you feel.
If you‘re attracted to malachite, maybe it’s time to begin anew and turn over a new leaf!