The Mohs scale of mineral hardness was once upon a time little more than a wooden box. This wooden box had ten compartments and inside each one contained a numbered mineral specimen. Then each mineral was tested by seeing which minerals can visibly scratch the others. Despite its lack of precision, the Mohs scale is still highly relevant…
Top 10 Mohs Scale Degrees of Hardness
Mohs Hardness: 10 – Diamond (Absolute Hardness: 1600)
The Mohs scale was created in 1812 by German geologist and mineralogist Friedrich Mohs and is still used by field geologists today.
Mohs Hardness: 9 – Corundum (Absolute Hardness: 400)
While helping with the identification of minerals in the field, the Mohs scale doesn’t really show how well hard materials perform in industrial uses.
Mohs Hardness: 8 – Topaz (Absolute Hardness: 200)
The Mohs scale is a purely ordinal scale. For example, corundum is twice as hard as topaz. So that is why I included the ‘Absolute Hardness’ scale.
Mohs Hardness: 7 – Quartz (Absolute Hardness: 100)
Quartz is found in sand and gravel and is a very hard mineral with a tough crystal shape structure. Also used by a lot of stone healers and meditators.
Mohs Hardness: 6 – Orthoclase feldspar (Absolute Hardness: 72)
Found mostly in Kenya, Orthoclase feldspar is hard to spot due to it being almost identical in physical properties to other minerals.
Mohs Hardness: 5 – Apatite (Absolute Hardness: 48)
Apatite is the most common phosphate mineral and is found in the bones and teeth of most animals, including us humans!
Mohs Hardness: 4 – Fluorite (Absolute Hardness: 21)
Fluorite is a mineral made up of calcium and fluoride. Unlike its components it can come in every single colour under the rainbow!
Mohs Hardness: 3 – Calcite (Absolute Hardness: 9)
Fluorite is usually mined from deep underground and it one of the most abundant minerals in the Earths crust.
Mohs Hardness: 2 – Gypsum (Absolute Hardness: 3)
Although gypsum is a mineral that might be able to exist as a sedimentary rock, but much like its name that means chalk it is very fragile.
Mohs Hardness: 1 – Talc (Absolute Hardness: 1)
In case you were wondering, yes, it really is Talc the mineral that is crushed into powder to form talcum powder. Minerals for you and your baby.