Yes. Selenite does dissolve in water.
If you want to understand more about why this is, how to clean your piece of selenite, or what you should do if you inadvertently put a piece of selenite in water, read on.
Cleaning Calcite with Vinegar? (EXPLAINED)
What is Selenite?
To understand why it is so bad to put selenite in water (unless you want to get rid of it), you first need to understand a bit about the material.
Selenite (also called satin spar, desert rose, or gypsum flower) is a crystal form of the mineral gypsum.
Gypsum is a soft sulfate mineral, and is used to make fertilizer, plaster, chalk, and drywall.
Selenite in just about any form is extremely soft as far as minerals go. On the Moh’s scale of hardness, selenite (aka gypsum) ranks a 2 out of 10, similar to amber, pearl, and rock salt.
In the scheme of things, few minerals are softer than selenite (talc is one). Heck, even your fingernails are harder than selenite.
In contrast, obsidian is a 5-6, jade is a 6-7, quartz is a 7-8, and a diamond is a 10.
Like most salts, Gypsum is water soluble. Imagine what happens when you put chalk in water, and then remember that selenite is only slightly harder.
What Happens When You Put a Piece of Selenite in Water?
The exterior of your selenite crystal will start to dissolve when you put water on it, or submerge it in water.
This process won’t necessarily happen quickly (like in seconds), and if your stone has a finish or a sealant, it might take a little while for the water to worn its way past the sealant through microscopic cracks.
If your crystal has cracks (whether you can see them or not), the water will infiltrate those vulnerable areas, potentially enough to cleave the stone into pieces.
In some cases, people will soak their piece of selenite and pull it out thinking that it looks just the same.
Others pull their piece and notice that the entire shiny polish/finish has been taken off.
Still others pull the stone up to find that the piece is much smaller than it was previously, or even broken apart.
You shouldn’t notice any significant chemical reaction (like foaming or bubbles).
Selenite is not toxic like other minerals (think of malachite). Just think of what it is like if you were to put salt in water.
Now, if you happen to have a significant amount of selenite (either a large piece or ground up material), it may not all dissolve as the water can actually only dissolve so much selenite until the solution becomes fully saturated.
This is why some people can get away with not losing their entire stone in water if they are cleaning it and forget to remove it.
To sum, selenite will be damaged by soaking in water. In contrast, labradorite is a crystal that people widely believe will dissolve in water, but doesn’t.
How Much Does Selenite Cost to Replace If I Damage Mine With Water?
Cost will vary depending on where you obtain your crystals. I grabbed a few options that are currently for sale on Amazon to give you an idea of what you could expect to spend.
Links in this article to Amazon are affiliate links. As an Amazon Associate, I may earn a commission from qualifying purchases at no additional cost to you.
What Do I Do If I Put Selenite in Water?
As an initial matter, the first thing to do is get it out of the water and carefully dry it off. Let it sit and dry out completely.
Then get a look at the stone to see if there has been damage either to the stone or to its surface.
Selenite is soft and easily damaged, so you’ll want to try and fix up the finish or sealant to protect the stone if it has been removed.
Unfortunately, there won’t be any real way to replace the selenite that was dissolved….it’ll be in the water, after all.
You can evaporate out the water but you won’t be able to return the material to your crystal.
From the metaphysical angle, some people fear that putting the stone in water (when it should not be) will cause major damage to the metaphysical properties.
They wonder if they should get rid of the stone, or perhaps even bury it.
We don’t see any reason to trash selenite if you put it in water.
Sure, the stone might not be the same as it was before.
But aside from its physical changes, it should work as well as it ever did before.
How Do You Clean Selenite Physically?
Knowing that selenite dissolves in water should definitely deter you from soaking it in water or any other liquid solution (like a salt water bath).
Instead, most people recommend buffing it with a soft cloth, or with a polish compound like aluminum oxide.
You can lightly spritz the stone with water, or dip it in water quickly to clean it up or off, but you definitely don’t want to put any serious cleaning up chemicals (on it).
If your selenite is dirty or stained, you might even consider repolishing it, or taking it to a professional for repolishing to avoid damaging it by trying to tumble it, rub and scrub it with sandpaper, or apply polish yourself.
How about Cleansing Selenite?
Selenite is a crystal that is known to have the ability to cleanse and recharge itself, or cleanse and recharge other crystals. In some cases, your stone may not need to be cleansed at all.
But if you like to regularly cleanse your crystals, or you are getting the feeling like your piece of selenite needs it, we recommend:
- placing your selenite next to water overnight, or as long as you think it needs it
- expose your crystal to the light of the moon
- bury the crystal in the earth
- let the crystal rest on a bed of herbs or brown rice
- let the crystal rest on a bed of salt
- meditate over your crystal
- utilize another one of the cleansing stones (like citrine, carnelian, or halite)
To Sum: Does Selenite Like Water?
No, selenite does not like water.
For More Information About Selenite, Try:
- How to Activate Selenite (and Care For It Without Damaging It)
- Can Selenite Go In Salt?
- Will The Sun Damage Selenite?
- Can I Have A Selenite Lamp With A Cat?
- Selenite vs Moonstone: What’s The Difference?