Photo: by: Emilian Robert Vicol (flickr)

Most Commonly Used Metals

My fiancée has a guilty pleasure. He likes to mine for metals in video games. I was watching him play Skyrim the other day while cleaning up and I swear he spent a good hour wandering around mining for ore. Iron, gold, silver… it didn't really matter, he found a place to mine and he mined. It's interesting that in this digital age, something so basic as metal plays a huge role. I may not see the appeal of spending hours using a digital pick axe to gather digital iron but I do see the appeal of metal. The transition of ores into shiny, smooth surfaces is interesting, and the products made with metal are often of a much higher quality than the same products made of things like plastic. In this blog post I'm going to talk about some of the most frequently used metals. Maybe you'll learn something… or maybe you will just want to go play Skyrim to gather some digital elements of your own. I'll start with aluminum, but you should know that while these are all very commonly used, I'm not including them in any particular order. First up is aluminum, something we all most likely have in our kitchens.


This metal is not only the most abundant one in the planet's crust, it's also one of the most frequently used. It's used so much because of how corrosion resistant it is and the low density it possesses. It's used in an array of products from foils and tin cans to cars and airplanes.


The #1 most commonly used metal on the planet is iron. It's also very readily available in the planet's crust and is even found within all of our bodies, making it useful in medical applications. It has an even heating property and is used to make steel.


This metal was one of the very first that man discovered and was one of the first to be used to make coins and tools. It is still one of the most frequently used for these purposes. It's very easy to work with and is often used to make alloys because of how soft it is. It conducts electricity and heat very well, allowing it to be used in piping and wiring.


Unlike copper, zinc is very brittle and hard. It is however anti-corrosive so it is used as a coating for steel and iron and in batteries with lead.


This metal is expected to eventually surpass most other metals in the variety of ways it can be used in industrial settings. It is expensive and difficult to mine but is more corrosion resistant, strong, and more durable than steel. Titanium is used to make fine jewelry, military jets, spacecraft, and water-resistant watches, among other things.

My favorite of the above metals is probably titanium, though I do love aluminum as well, mainly due to its practical uses in my kitchen. I'm not sure I could function without aluminum foil!