Technically, tourmaline is a  complex borosilicate mineral with varying amounts of aluminum, iron, magnesium, sodium, lithium, potassium, and sometimes other elements, used as a gem. It occurs in prismatic crystals, commonly three-sided, six-sided, or nine-sided, and striated vertically.    It has a Mohs hardness of 7 – 7.5, and is commonly mined in Africa and Brazil, as well as found in smaller deposits in other locations.  But lovers of this beautiful crystal know it as one of brilliant color, whether pink or red or blue or green or black or combinations of these.  The stones are beautiful cut into cabochons or faceted.

Metaphysical:  Tourmaline is said to increase flexibility, happiness, objectivity, compassion and serenity. It also enhances tolerance and understanding. Tourmaline is also a very protective stone and is often associated with the heart chakra.