Hard water is very high in minerals such as calcium and magnesium. It is not recommended to use such water in washing of clothes or cleaning as it leaves the minerals on the clothes. It also reduces the detergent power so that clothes end up feeling hard, rough and uncomfortable to the skin. Water acquires its hardness from the minerals in the air and soil.
Have you ever washed your hands in an unfamiliar place and noticed there are very few suds for the amount of soap on your hand? The reason for is hard water. This water contains a high mineral content in comparison to soft water. It contains high concentrations of magnesium and calcium.
While hard water will generally not be detrimental to your health, it is useful to understand what this type of water can do. For industrial settings where water is used, companies and corporations monitor the levels of hardness in their water to prevent expensive breakdowns in cooling towers, boilers and other equipment using water.