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About Howlite– History and Introduction
Identifying Howlite
Howlite Origin
Buying Howlite
Howlite Gemological Properties
Howlite – Similar Materials
Howlite – Metaphysical Powers
Howlite Jewelry Ideas
Howlite Care

About Howlite – History and Introduction
Howlite is a borate mineral found in evaporite deposits. Howlite was discovered near Windsor, Nova Scotia in 1868 by Henry How (1828-1879), a Canadian chemist, geologist, and mineralogist. How was alerted to the unknown mineral by miners in a gypsum quarry, who found it to be a nuisance. He called the new mineral silico-boro-calcite; it was given the name howlite by James Dwight Dana shortly thereafter

Identifying Howlite
The most common form of howlite is irregular nodules, sometimes resembling cauliflower. Crystals of howlite are rare, having been found in only a couple localities worldwide. Crystals were first reported from Tick Canyon, California, and later at Iona, Nova Scotia. Crystals reach a maximum size of about 1 cm. The nodules are white with fine grey or black veins in an erratic, often web-like pattern, opaque with a sub-vitreous lustre. The crystals at Iona are colorless, white or brown and are often translucent or transparent.

Its structure is monoclinic with a Mohs hardness of 3.5 and lacks regular cleavage. Crystals are prismatic and flattened on {100}. The crystals from Tick Canyon are elongated along the 010 axis, while those from Iona are elongated along the 001 axis.

Howlite Origin
Howlite occurs at many evaporation deposits in southern California as huge nodules. Notable areas include Tick Canyon (near Saugus), Lang, Los Angeles Co.; Dagget, San Bernardino Co.; Death Valley, Inyo Co; and Boron, in the Kramer District, San Bernardino Co. It also occurs in Nova Scotia, Canada, in Bras D’Or Lake off Cape Breton Island; and near Windsor, Hants Co. Both these localites are known for their tiny tabular crystals on large nodules, and they are the only occurrences to date where visually crystallized examples of this mineral occur.

Other localities are the Muddy Mountains, Clark Co., Nevada; and the Bigadic Mine, Marmara Region, Turkey. – See more at:

Buying Howlite
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Because of its porous texture, howlite can be easily dyed to imitate other minerals, especially turquoise because of the superficial similarity of the veining patterns. The dyed howlite (or magnesite) is marketed as turquenite. Howlite is also sold in its natural state, sometimes under the misleading trade names of “white turquoise” or “white buffalo turquoise,” or the derived name “white buffalo stone.”

Howlite Gemological Properties
Chemical Formula: Ca2B5SiO9(OH)5
Composition: Basic calcium silico-borate
Color: White, commonly marked with black or brown intersecting vine-like or skin-like veins
Streak: White
Hardness: 3.5
Crystal System: Monoclinic
Crystal Forms and Aggregates: Occurs in giant masses and as fragments of them. Also occurs as large and small nodules resembling cauliflower heads. Large masses have the same texture as unglazed porcelain. Crystals, which are tabular, are barely noticeable with the naked eye. They are found in only one region in Nova Scotia, where the crystals occur on large nodules. Also occurs scaly and earthy.
Transparency: Translucent in thin splinters; otherwise opaque
Specific Gravity: 2.5 – 2.6
Luster: Dull, sometimes vitreous
Cleavage: None
Fracture: Conchoidal to even
Tenacity: Brittle
Other ID Marks: Sometimes fluorescent cream-yellow to white in shortwave ultraviolet light.
Complex Tests: Soluble in hydrochloric acid
In Group: Borates; Hydrous Borates
Striking Features: Mineral formations and localities
Environment: Borax evaporite deposits in dry lakes and in sedimentary clay.
Rock Type: Sedimentary
Popularity (1-4): 3
Prevalence (1-3): 2
Demand (1-3): 2

Howlite – Similar Materials (Common Mineral Associations)
Borax, Ulexite, Colemanite, Anhydrite

Howlite – Metaphysical Powers

Keyword: Calming

Spiritual and Psychic Properties

Spiritually, howlite is a stone of awareness. It can prepare the user or wearer to receive wisdom and attunement from the Higher Self and the Divine. It is also used for dimensional travel and healthy meditation.

Howlite can also be used to release attachments, or cords, linking old emotional pain, from this life or a past life, to the present. Once these atachments are severed, it allows for processing those emotions and bringing peace in those areas.

Mental and Emotional Properties

Howlite is a wonder stone for calming upset states of mind and emotion. Howlite decreases an overly critical state of mind, selfishness, stress, and anxiety, bringing calm and relaxation. Howlite also can decrease anger originating from within or externally. The wake of such calming can help one be truly comfortable as oneself without the need to pretend to be anything but what you are.

Subtlety and tact are also energies that howlite brings. This can calm difficult communications and ease confrontations., particularly by decreasing rudeness and facetiousness.

Howlite is also used to heighten creativity and expand self-expression.

Physical Conditions Properties

Howlite is used in crystal healing for pain, insomnia (especially as a gem elixir before bed), bones, osteoporosis, teeth, calcium levels, leg cramps, anxiety disorders and stress-related illnesses. Less well known uses in crystal healing are for the circulatory system and endocrine system. Please note that healing crystal meanings are spiritual supports to healing and are not prescriptions or healthcare information.

Related Chakras

Howlite is primarily associated with the crown chakra, but can also be used to stimulate and balance all the chakras.

Other Information

Howlite takes permanent color enhancement well, so it is often colored to resemble other stones or to have bright, intriguing colors. Turquonite is an example of this, though there are many other colors. Colored dyed or enhanced howlite, however, has the synergistic properties of howlite and of the color energies. Some unscrupulous dealers sell artificially colored howlite as turquoise, lapis lazuli, sodalite, aventurine, or sugilite.

More on Howlite From My Personal Perspective

Howlite is another stone that in its native white is often under-appreciated. As a calming stone, it is top notch, but it is not always one I think of first.

Sometimes howlite feels very grounding and even heavy to me, in spite of the fact it has a strong association with the Crown chakra. I think this stems from my tendency to want to “live in the clouds” and lose my earth connection. In truth, though, this is a most useful energy for me or others with this tendency, because we are spiritually bereft if we do not have an anchor in the Earth plane where we are currently sent to live by the Divine.

Howlite Jewelry Ideas
The attractive black and brown intersecting veins in Howlite make it useful as an ornamental stone. It is used as gemstone for beads and is often tumbled and sold to amateur collectors. When dyed blue it is used as an inexpensive substitute for Turquoise.

Howlite Care
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Alternate Names & Spellings for Howlite:
Howelite, Khaulite, Silicoborocalcite, Winkworthite, White Turquoise, Turquoise Howlite (turquoise dyed), Sacred Buffalo, Lapis Howlite (blue dyed), White Buffalo

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