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Malachite is generally opaque and comes in a vivid bluish green to green color. It is usually banded in two or more tones of green and may have a subtle sheen. This gem is a secondary copper mineral and is commonly found in conjunction with azurite, a bold blue copper carbonate mineral. A mix of the two minerals is often called azurmalachite.

Malachite Polished
Malachite Classification
Common Name Malachite
Species Malachite
Malachite Optical Properties
Transparency Opaque
Refractive Index Over The Limit 1.655-1.909
Birefringence 0.254
Polariscope Reaction Doubly Refractive (DR)
Fluorescence SWUV: inert
LWUV: inert
Pleochroism None
Malachite Characteristic Physical Properties
Hardness 3.5-4
Streak Light Green
Specific Gravity 3.250-4.100 Typical:3.950
Toughness Poor
Inclusions Malachite is often seen with botryoidal growth, curved or angular banding alternating between lighter and darker shades of green. Stones may have fibrous structure and sheen. Stones might show scratches and dull polish due to low mohs hardness.
Luster Vitreous, Silky
Fracture Uneven, Splintery
Cleavage Perfect, in one direction, Good, in one direction
Malachite Chemistry & Crystallography
Chemical Name copper carbonate hydroxide
Chemical Formula Cu2CO3(OH)2
Crystal System Monoclinic
Chemistry Classification Carbonate

Malachite Colors

  • Green Malachite Green

Countries of Origin

Tanzania, United Republic Of; United States of America (the); Congo (the); Zambia; Austria; Unknown; China; Namibia; Russian Federation (the); Italy; Mexico; South Africa; Zimbabwe; Israel; Australia


Malachite is generally opaque with bands of black that contrast with streaks of vibrant, bluish green to green. This lively green stone adds an earthy feel to any outfit. Typically set in sterling silver, expect to find significant pieces when seeking malachite jewelry. Although it's often used in men's jewelry, women are drawn to its verdant shading. Whether you enjoy it in a ring, earrings, necklace or bracelet, this eye-catching gemstone makes a powerful statement whenever its worn.


Malachite is worn best at your ears and your neckline. It measures at 3 ½ - 4 on the Mohs scale of hardness. Bracelets and rings are best worn with care. Exercise care in cleaning, too. No harsh chemicals or ultrasonic cleaners. Wipe with a soft damp cloth and dry thoroughly.

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More About Malachite

In ancient times it was believed that malachite could prevent falling and protect travelers. In some regions of Italy, malachite was believed to protect against the evil eye. Closely related is the belief that, if hung on a baby's bed, malachite could protect the child from evil and bring tranquil sleep. It was also believed that parents who held malachite in the palms of their hands would enjoy restful sleep. Malachite was also thought to attract financial success. After all, it's very green. We enjoy the many folkloric beliefs around oh-so-green malachite. Please remember that there is no scientific evidence of fact in folklore.

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Tim Matthews


Tim Matthews

Tim Matthews is President and Chief Executive Officer of Jewelry Television® (JTV), as well as a member of the company's Board of Directors. He oversees and leads all aspects of the company's powerful omni-digital retail platform that uniquely specializes in fine jewelry and gemstones. His passion for business and gemstones has led him to become a recognized expert in the field of gemology. He is a life member of the Gemmological Association of Great Britain (Gem-A) and has earned Gem-A's highest degrees, the Gemmology (FGA) and Diamond (DGA) diplomas. He is also a Graduate Gemologist (GG) of the Gemological Institute of America (GIA) and has also completed GIA's Graduate Diplomas in Diamonds, Colored Stones and Pearls. Under his leadership, JTV has become the leader in the sourcing and selling of color gemstones and jewelry.

This page was created on June 27, 2014.

This page was last edited on October 24, 2019.