Magnetic property research in the geosciences has seen an enormous development during the most recent decade. The underlying special collection published in two AGU journals: Journal of Geophysical Research—Solid Earth and Geochemistry, Geophysics, Geosystems is an outcome of the 11th International Conference on Rock Magnetism, held in Utrecht (The Netherlands) in July 2017 and reflects this full breadth. We recognize four groups in which individual contributions are gathered. (1) Recent advances in fundamental rock and mineral magnetic methods, including discussions on how to assess magnetic grain size, which is centrally important to magnetic stability over geologic timescales and high-fidelity paleomagnetic recording. (2) Geomagnetism with an emphasis on late Pleistocene paleosecular variation and relative paleointensity records, relevant to geomagnetic field models. (3) Reassessments of classic paleomagnetic field tests and examples of tectonic and magnetostratigraphic applications. (4) The merit of magnetic property analysis in solving geoscience problems, both in soft and hard rocks.