Here’s our review of the best erasable colored pencils.
The best erasable colored pencils should be easily erased, easy to use, and durable.
But, they’re often less vibrant than regular colored pencils.
As an artist, I’ve researched and found the best erasable colored pencils that you or your kids can use.
And I’ve found the Prismacolor Col-Erase Erasable Colored Pencil to be the best overall erasable colored pencil. It’s wax-based, has a break-resistant core, and has a good range of colors.
But everyone is different and has different needs. So, I’ve included a few options for you to choose from.
Let’s get started!
What to consider when picking the best erasable colored pencils
Here are a few things to consider before picking the right colored pencils for you.
Ideally, you’d want to find colored pencils that are nontoxic if you are giving them to kids or if you eat when you do art. There are also colored pencils that are made from environmentally friendly wood. Some types have break-resistant cores which can last longer because they won’t break as often when you sharpen them.
Erasable colored pencils tend to have less pigment than regular colored pencils. They contain more graphite and binder compared to pigment. This makes them easier to erase, but it also means that they are less vibrant. Colored pencils with a lot of wax content can smear easily and are harder to erase.
Try to aim for a set of at least 24 pieces to cover the basic range of colors. Having a 12-piece set can be quite limiting for most people so I always recommend saving up and going for a larger set. A lot of high-quality erasable colored pencils only have a 12-piece or 24-piece set. But, there are also good alternatives that offer larger sets with decent quality.
Some erasable colored pencils come with erasers on top. These are great for traveling and convenient to use. But, the quality is generally low. For erasing colored pencils, I recommend getting kneaded erasers, vinyl erasers, or electric erasers.
A good erasable colored pencil should have a break-resistant lead that is durable. This helps prolong the life of the pencil and you won’t have to replace them as often. Softer lead can have more wax in it which makes it easier to blend but harder to erase. Most erasable colored pencils tend to have harder cores than regular soft-core wax-based colored pencils.
5 Best erasable colored pencils
From my research, I’ve found the top five erasable colored pencils:
1. Prismacolor Col-Erase Erasable Colored Pencil – Best overall
Prismacolor Col-Erase Erasable Colored Pencils are made with high quality. These have a medium core hardness that is resistant to breaking. This means that these pencils will last a long time and you won’t have to replace them as often.
These colored pencils come with an eraser on top. This makes them great for traveling and convenient to use. However, the eraser’s quality is only average so be sure to buy separate erasers (kneaded, vinyl, or electric) if you erase often.
The main downside, like many other erasable colored pencils, is that these are not as vibrant as regular colored pencils. You might want to opt for the Prismacolor Premier if you like more vibrant colors (but, they’re not as erasable).
|Good color range||Not as vibrant|
|Medium, break-resistant core|
|Eraser on top|
|Easy to erase|
2. Crayola Erasable Colored Pencils – Best budget
If you’re on a budget, the Crayola Erasable Colored Pencils are a great choice. These come in a 50-piece set and are often more affordable than other options when you look at the per-pencil price. These are also great for kids because the core is nontoxic and safe. These come with erasers on top which is a plus.
Again, like other erasable colored pencils, these aren’t as vibrant as regular colored pencils. The other downside is that the packaging is not very good. A lot of buyers find that the paper box arrives damaged or is difficult to store the pencils.
Be sure to choose the 50-count pack, not the 54-count pack when you buy (the 54-count pack comes with a lot of duplicate colors).
|Very affordable||Not very vibrant|
|Great color range||Poor packaging|
|Nontoxic – Great for children|
|Eraser on top|
3. Staedtler Noris Erasable Colored Pencils – Best alternative
The Staedtler Noris Erasable Colored Pencils are also high-quality erasable colored pencils that are made in Germany. Like the Prismacolor Col-Erase, they have a break-resistant core that helps them last a long time. These also come with an eraser on top.
The only downside I found with these is that the colors are not as vibrant as regular colored pencils. As I’ve stated, most erasable colored pencils have the same downside.
|Lasts a long time||Not as vibrant|
|Good range of colors|
|Eraser on top|
The Arteza Kids Erasable Colored Pencils are another great choice of erasable colored pencils for kids since they are non-toxic. It comes with 48 pencils which offers a wide range of colors to choose from. These pencils have a soft wax core that is break resistant. They’re also affordable.
Like other erasable colored pencils, these are not as vibrant as regular colored pencils. Another downside is that the container is a bit difficult to close so you might have to store these in another way.
|Affordable||Not as vibrant|
|Great range of colors||Container is a bit difficult to close|
|Soft wax core that is break-resistant|
|Eraser on top|
|Nontoxic – great for children|
The Tombow Irojiten Colored Pencil Set is a great set of high-quality colored pencils. The set comes with 12 colors and is wax-based. Although it is wax-based, it has a hard lead (don’t choose this one if you like soft core pencils). The pencils in the set are pigmented and vibrant. The set also comes with an abrasive eraser and a sharpener.
The main downside with these pencils is that they’re not as erasable as the other options even though these are more vibrant. The set also has very limited color as it is only a 12-piece set. Lastly, they’re a bit expensive.
|High-quality colored pencils||A bit expensive|
|Pigmented and vibrant||Limited colors|
|Comes with an eraser and sharpener||Not as easily erasable|
|Good for blending and for details|
How to use erasable colored pencils
Here’s a guide on how to erase colored pencils so you can get the most out of it.
Start off with a sketch – start with a graphite pencil rather than colored pencils to sketch out what you want to draw. Graphite pencils are easier to erase, and it helps a lot to plan out your piece before committing color to it.
Use a good paper – pick a paper that weighs around 300 gsm or higher so it can withstand erasing. Erasing can be rough on the paper so having a tough paper is important. You can even opt for 100% cotton paper which is more durable. Check out our guide on the best paper for colored pencils for more details.
Pick the right erasers – kneaded erasers, electric erasers, and vinyl erasers all work well with colored pencils in most cases. It’s a good idea to avoid rubber erasers because they can easily smear your colored pencils and leave a lot of dust behind. Abrasive erasers are also a bit too rough on paper so avoid them unless you are drawing on a harder surface. See our guide on erasers for colored pencils to learn more.
Start with a light layer – starting off with light layers will allow you to easily erase any mistakes you made. If you start too heavily, it’s easy to make mistakes and would make it hard to erase the mark completely.
Try thumbnailing – if you’re having trouble with color composition, it helps to make a few mini-version of what you’re drawing to test out the colors. Doing this saves you a lot of time from having to start over if you make the wrong color choices.
Make a color reference sheet – make a reference sheet ideally on the type of paper that you will use for your final piece. This helps you see the exact color of the pigments which sometimes doesn’t match the color on the pencil.
Frequently asked questions
Here are a few frequently asked questions when it comes to choosing the best erasable colored pencils.
Are erasable colored pencils completely erasable?
Erasable colored pencils are usually erasable only when you lay down a very light layer. Most of the time, it will still leave a mark on your paper. But, they are still considered more easily erasable than regular colored pencils.
What erasers should I use for colored pencils?
Kneaded erasers, electric erasers, and vinyl erasers typically work well with colored pencils.
Kneaded erasers are more versatile because you can knead it into the shape you want. You can knead it into a big blob to erase large areas, or you can give it an edge to erase fine details.
Electric erasers are a good choice for colored pencils because they are powerful, but they don’t damage the paper much. They are easy to use and feel very effortless to erase.
Vinyl erasers are good for larger areas and general erasing. They generally work better than rubber erasers (which I recommend avoiding because of smudging and too much dust). They’re also softer than abrasive erasers which is better for your paper.
What’s the difference between erasable colored pencils and regular colored pencils?
Erasable colored pencils are made with more graphite and binders. This means that they have less pigment and are less vibrant, but they are easier to erase. Since they’re easier to erase, they are perfect for you if you make mistakes often or for sketching. If you like more vibrant colors, go with a set on the list of our best colored pencils for artists.
Erasable colored pencils are a great choice if you make a lot of mistakes or if you want to sketch with your colored pencils.
They are easier to erase, but they often are less pigmented and vibrant.
Every artist is different, so try to find the one that suits you best.
But Prismacolor Col-Erase Erasable Colored Pencil is a great choice for most people when it comes to erasable colored pencils.