Is malachite really the Botox of crystals?

It’s more than just a pretty stone: it’s got skin healing and anti-ageing benefits too. 

Whether you believe they’re just pretty rocks, or hold the key to life’s abundance, it’s hard to ignore the meteoric rise of crystals. These days, there’s a crystal for pretty much everything life could throw at you from bad vibes to a better sleep. And while they do have a league of celeb devotees (like Victoria Beckham) who believe that crystals can and will change their life, dermatologists and beauty brands are generally not in the woo-woo camp. Which is why we sat up and took notice when malachite started to appear in skincare products.

And no we’re not just talking about the Gooper’s either (though Goop do have a Malachite-infused product, naturally). We’re talking legit, big-name brands like Sisley, Tracie Martyn, Darphin and Graydon Skincare who all have products infused with malachite extract.

So, let’s put the “do crystals even work” argument aside for a second and focus on what this is: a buzzy beauty ingredient – one that author, energy practitioner, and founder of Style Rituals, Colleen McCann boldly called the “botox of the crystal world”. But is that just the epitome of wellness hyperbole? Or is there something actually to it?

What is Malachite?

First, let’s get acquainted with the stone itself – or more aptly – the mineral. Because, Malachite is actually a green copper carbonate hydroxide mineral that was once used to create the metal, copper. Vivid green in colour, its calling card is the intricate marbling and the fact that the colour doesn’t disintegrate with time or sunlight.

From an energetic standpoint, Rachel Crethar, RTT hypnotherapist and founder of Rock & Co crystals says,“Malachite is known as the stone of transformation and protection. It can help create change by releasing any negativity you’ve been holding onto.” She adds, “green coloured crystals are associated with the heart chakra so I tend to recommend it to people who are looking for transformation in their love life or self worth.” So, if you were going for the full mystic angle it’s also not much of a stretch to think that malachite might use its transforming powers on your skin either.

What does malachite do in skincare?

But its energetic powers aren’t why McCann likened it to Botox. That has to do with its chemical composition, which helps with all the anti-ageing good stuff: wrinkle, elasticity, and loss of tone. On top of that, it’s also a powerhouse in the antioxidant department, which we need to fight off the free radicals that accelerate ageing.

Garydon Moffat, CEO and founder of the eponymous skincare line, Graydon Skincare has been using malachite in her products (like this serum and mist) since 2018. She explains, “the malachite extract we use is a protective copper complex that boosts cellular defence for an anti-aging and detoxifying effect. Copper is known to have antioxidant properties, and help increase the production of collagen, keratin, and elastin.”

And this is not just marketing spin either. There have been both clinical trials and research undertaken to support the claims, finding that copper upregulates collagen and elastin production, which are two of the things that slow as we age (and lead to wrinkles and sagging). It also helps to inhibit cellular oxidative effects, and protect cellular structure.

Using malachite for beauty purposes isn’t even a new idea. In fact, the ancient Egyptians used it for both makeup (that green colour!), a luxe skin treatment and even to prevent eye infections. Though Graydon does warn, “it is not recommended for use in high concentrations, but we are personally very careful to use it at the appropriate percentage to help stimulate collagen production in the skin.”

Is your skin type right for malachite?

Got skin? Then you’re the right type to use malachite. Because it’s one of those rare gems (see what we did there?) that works on all skin types. Graydon says, “because of its high concentration of copper, our recommendation is especially for those who want to combat the signs of ageing. But, it’s really great for all skin types and conditions, including sensitive skin, skin exposed to the elements and blue light, and everything in between.”

So whether you’re in it for the transforming energy or the skin transformation, malachite is one stone that really is more than just a pretty piece of rock – and science says so too.