If you are someone who enjoys painting and drawing, watercolor pencils make a perfect combination of both mediums. They are water-soluble tools designed to perform with or without the addition of water.
Used dry, you get a colored pencil effect with clear detail and sharp lines. However, with water applied to either the paper or the pencil, you get a completely different, traditional watercolor result with softer edges and blended colors. Watercolor pencils make a great tool for both beginners and advanced artists.
No matter if you are a hobbyist looking for a new way to express your creativity or an experienced artist who is looking for an upgrade from colored pencils, this article is for you. I have reviewed and compared some of the best watercolor pencils in order to help you choose the right watercolor pencils set for you.
- What is the Best Brand of Watercolor Pencils?
- Watercolor Pencils: Pros and Cons
- Which Watercolor Pencils Are The Best?
- Best Watercolor Pencils: 20 Great Sets That Will Blow You Away
- Top 20 Watercolor Pencils Reviews 2020
- Cretacolor Woodless Aquarelle Pencils
- Faber-Castell Albrecht Durer Magnus Watercolor Pencil Tin
- Derwent Graphitint Pencils
- Caran d'Ache Classic Neocolor II Water-Soluble Pastels
- Faber-Castel FC117524 Albrecht Durer Artist Watercolor Pencils
- Derwent Inktense Pencil
- Prismacolor Premier
- LYRA Aquacolor Water-Soluble Wax Crayons
- Derwent 32883 Water Color Pencils
- Staedtler Ergosoft Aquarell
- Staedtler Karat Aquarell Premium Watercolor Pencils
- Sanford Prismacolor Premier Water-Soluble Colored Pencils
- Faber-Castell Graphite Aquarelle Water-soluble Pencils
- OOKU Watercolor Pencils Artist Set
- US Sense 36 Watercolor Pencils Set
- Strokes Art 48 Piece Artist Grade High-Quality Watercolor Water Soluble Colored Pencil Set
- Colore Watercolor Pencils
- Artist's Choice 72 Pack Watercolor Pencils
- Faber-Castell – GRIP Watercolor EcoPencils
- ARTEZA Professional Watercolor Pencils
- Why Use Watercolor Pencils?
- When to Use Watercolor Pencils?
- How Watercolor Pencils Work?
- How Watercolor Pencils are Made?
- How to Use Watercolor Pencils?
- How to Use Watercolor Pencils for Beginners?
- How to Watercolor Pencil Drawings?
- How to Watercolor Pencil Flowers?
- How to Use Watercolor Pencils on Fabric?
- Are Staedtler Watercolor Pencils Good?
- Which is Better Staedtler or Faber Castell?
- Is Prismacolor Better Than Faber Castell?
- Can You Erase Watercolor Pencils?
- What Paper do You Use For Watercolor?
- Can You Watercolor on Canvas?
- How do You Flatten Watercolor Paper After Painting?
- Do Watercolor Pencils Need Water?
- Can Watercolor Pencils be Used Without Water?
- Watercolor Pencils vs Colored Pencils
- Arteza Colored Pencils vs Prismacolor
- Watercolor Pencils vs Pens
- Watercolor Pencils vs Polychromos
- Watercolor Pencils vs Watercolor Markers
- Watercolor Pencils vs Pastel Pencils
- Watercolor Pencils vs Inktense
- Watercolor Pencils vs Copic Markers
- Watercolor Pencils or Paint
- Derwent Watercolor Pencils vs Inktense
- Derwent Watercolor Pencils vs Faber Castell
- Derwent Watercolor Pencils vs Prismacolor
- Colored Pencils vs Watercolor Paint
- Faber Castell Watercolor Pencils vs Classic
- Faber Castell Watercolor Pencils vs Polychromos
- Watercolor Pencils Techniques for Beginners
- Watercolor Pencils Tutorial
- Best Way to Sharpen Watercolor Pencils
- Final Verdict
What is the Best Brand of Watercolor Pencils?
Each brand has its benefits and flaws. However, most of them produce high-quality watercolor pencils, especially those that I have reviewed and compared in the chart above. It is up to you to decide which set works best for you. In case you have not seen my chart, here are some of the most popular brands.
- LYRA Aquacolor Watersoluble Crayons
- Prismacolor Premier
- Derwent Inktense Pencils
- Faber-Castell Albrecht Durer
- Caran d'Ache Neocolor II
- Derwent Graphitint Pencils
- Faber-Castell Albrecht Durer Magnus
- Cretacolor Woodless Aquarelle Pencils
Watercolor Pencils: Pros and Cons
Watercolor pencils come at a low cost and provide portability which makes them better than traditional watercolors. Also, you can buy them at any art store or shop online because you have more options you can choose from. They can be sharpened to a fine point, so it is easy to add details to your masterpieces.
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- Top 19 Best Art Markers Reviews 2020 (Recommended)
- Top 19 Best Acrylic Paint Reviews 2020 (Recommended)
- 30 Best Colored Pencils Reviews 2020 (Beginners to Professional Artists)
These pencils are perfect for beginners. However, professional artists can find them useful as well due to their high-quality and break-resistant leads. Now, let’s summarize the pros & cons of watercolor pencils.
- They deliver similar results as watercolor paints
- They cover more surface with one pencil unlike other tools
- They make it simple to lighten up the shades if needed
- Watercolor pencils are easier to use than traditional watercolors
- They work well with other mediums, dry or wet
- They require a special heavier paper
- Their colors are not that intense when dried
- Usually, their color range is more limited
Which Watercolor Pencils Are The Best?
In order to help you pick the best watercolor set for you, I have put the focus on some of the top-rated sets for this year. Also, make sure to read their detailed reviews below the chart before your final order.
- Best Overall: Cretacolor Woodless Aquarelle Pencils
“Storage container for protection, lacquered body, break-resistant lead, suitable for beginners and pros.”
- Runner Up: Faber-Castell Albrecht Durer Magnus Watercolor Pencil Tin
“Excellent for detail and mixed media work, easy to blend, water-soluble, 10mm paintbrush included.”
- Best Budget: OOKU Watercolor Pencils Artist Set
“Relatively cheap, very soft application, a wide spectrum of bright colors, a free brush, and a sharpener.”
- Best for Beginners: Staedtler Ergosoft Aquarell
“Vibrant colors, super versatile, richly colored soft lead, stand-up box, comfortable grip, affordable.”
- Best for Professionals: ARTEZA Professional Watercolor Pencils
“Hexagonal barrel provides a comfortable grip, portable, sturdy tin case, vibrant colors, pre-sharpened.”
- Best for Coloring Books: Sanford Prismacolor Premier Water-Soluble Colored Pencils
“Deep and creamy colors, easy to combine, exceptional lightfastness, perfect for shading and blending.”
- Best for Wood: Staedtler Karat Aquarell Premium Watercolor Pencils
“Smooth application, deep and rich hues, super versatile, perfect dor wet and dry cycles, pre-sharpened.”
- Best for Travel: Artist's Choice 72 Pack Watercolor Pencils
“Decent quality, affordably-priced, nice metal tin, great for newbies and travelers, a free brush included.”
- Best for Students: US Sense 36 Watercolor Pencils Set
“Very convenient iron box for storage, super durable, bright assorted colors, great quality at a low cost.”
- Best for Sketching: Derwent Graphitint Pencils
“Easy to dissolve in water, suitable for paintings with a darker theme, permanent, smooth application.”
Best Watercolor Pencils: 20 Great Sets That Will Blow You Away
The amount per set, pigment level, lead diameter, storage box, and warranty are some of the important features you need to consider when buying watercolor pencils. I have compared some of those features in my watercolor pencil brand comparison chart below. Without further ado, let’s dive into my reviews.
|BEST WATERCOLOR PENCILS||DIMENSIONS||CORE||LEAD||AMOUNT PER SET|
|Cretacolor Woodless Aquarelle Pencils – Best Overall||12.9" x 7.7" x 1"||Soft||Break-resistant||72|
|Faber-Castell Albrecht Durer Magnus Watercolor Pencil Tin – Runner Up||12.8" x 5.1" x 7.5"||Soft||Break-resistant||24|
|Derwent Graphitint Pencils – Best Watercolor Pencils for Sketching||9.3" x 0.6" x 7.8"||Soft||Break-resistant||24|
|Caran d'Ache Classic Neocolor II Water-Soluble Pastels – Best Watercolor Pencils for Card Making||8" x 4" x 0.5"||Soft||Break-resistant||30|
|Faber-Castel FC117524 Albrecht Durer Artist Watercolor Pencils – Best Watercolor Pencils for Artist||8.4" x 7.5" x 0.6"||Soft||Break-resistant||24|
|Derwent Inktense Pencil||0.6" x 9.3" x 8.4"||Soft||Break-resistant||24|
|Prismacolor Premier||8" x 2" x 0.6"||Soft||Break-resistant||36|
|LYRA Aquacolor Water-Soluble Wax Crayons||10.6" x 0.5" x 4.4"||Soft||Break-resistant||24|
|Derwent 32883 Water Color Pencils||9.3" x 0.6" x 7.8"||Soft||Break-resistant||24|
|Staedtler Ergosoft Aquarell – Best Watercolor Pencils for Beginners||8.5" x 0.5" x 7.3"||Soft||Break-resistant||24|
|Staedtler Karat Aquarell Premium Watercolor Pencils – Best Watercolor Pencils for Wood||9.4" x 5.9" x 0.8"||Soft||Break-resistant||24|
|Sanford Prismacolor Premier Water-Soluble Colored Pencils – Best Watercolor Pencils for Coloring Books||1" x 4.8" x 8.2"||Soft||Break-resistant||24|
|Faber-Castell Graphite Aquarelle Water-soluble Pencils||3.9" x 2" x 7.9"||Soft||Break-resistant||5|
|OOKU Watercolor Pencils Artist Set – Best Budget||3.9" x 2" x 2"||Soft||Break-resistant||48|
|US Sense 36 Watercolor Pencils Set – Best Water Pencils for Students||2.6" x 2.4" x 7.5"||Soft||Break-resistant||36|
|Strokes Art 48 Piece Artist Grade High-Quality Watercolor Water Soluble Colored Pencil Set – Best Watercolor Pencils on Canvas||8" x 1" x 4"||Soft||Break-resistant||48|
|Colore Watercolor Pencils||15" x 7.4" x 0.8"||Soft||Break-resistant||72|
|Artist's Choice 72 Pack Watercolor Pencils – Best Watercolor Pencils for Travel||8.3" x 7.4" x 1.3"||Soft||Break-resistant||72|
|Faber-Castell - GRIP Watercolor EcoPencils||0.4" x 7.4" x 8.5"||Soft||Break-resistant||24|
|ARTEZA Professional Watercolor Pencils – Best Watercolor Pencils for Professional Artists||9" x 1.3" x 7.5"||Soft||Break-resistant||72|
Top 20 Watercolor Pencils Reviews 2020
If you want detailed reviews on watercolor pencils, you have come to the right place. Let’s review some of the best watercolor pencils together, remember their pros and cons and choose the right set for you.
Cretacolor Woodless Aquarelle Pencils
Cretacolor woodless aquarelle pencils represent highly-pigmented pencils that have the added benefit of being water-soluble. They impart soft strokes and rich colors. Each pencil features a 7mm in diameter pure colored lead without any wooden casing. These tools can be easily sharpened and used wet or dry.
Just submerge them into the water and draw onto paper. If you buy this set, you get 72 pencils made of a woodless solid cylinder of graphite. I personally recommend this set because it is created by a trusted brand that has manufactured the highest quality drawing tools for 200 years. Now, let’s check the cons.
- Includes 72 colors and tones that an artist can enjoy using
- It has a storage container which ensures the watercolor pencils protection
- The lacquered body avoid pigment spillage onto the fingers
- The body is firm enough to be sharpened
- Easy to use for both beginners and professionals
- The colors are not as vibrant as other watercolor pencil variants
- A bit expensive set
- May not be ideal for all forms of paintings
Faber-Castell Albrecht Durer Magnus Watercolor Pencil Tin
Next, I have Faber Castell’s Albrecht Durer Magnus watercolor pencils that feature the exact features as the traditional size pencils. But here is the kicker. They have a super thick 5.3mm break-resistant core. If you want water-soluble pencils with intense color laydown for covering larger areas, this item is for you.
The lightfast pigment can be easily blended when wet and turns permanent when dry for smooth, rich watercolor effects. The colors of this set are consistent when dry or wet and can be drawn over with ink or painted on when dry for multimedia projects. If you buy this German set, you will get 24 great pencils.
- Excellent for detail and mixed media work
- Easy to blend without much effort
- Able to purchase the pencils as a set or individually
- They are completely water-soluble
- Includes additional 10mm paintbrush
- A bit pricey
Derwent Graphitint Pencils
(Best Watercolor Pencils for Sketching)
If you want to introduce some color to your projects and boost your art, Derwent Graphitint pencils set is for you. When used dry, this set provides just a hint of color. However, applying water transforms the tint into a rich and smooth color. If you want soft, easily blendable pencils, purchase this set right now.
You will get a wide range of colors starting from soft grays, blues, greens, amazing russets, browns, and plums. This set has the same properties as Derwent’s 4B Watersoluble Sketching pencils, so artists find it appealing because it can add a new dimension to their graphite drawings and boost their creative side.
- Provide color shades which have a darker and softer tone
- Very easy to dissolve in water
- Suitable for paintings with a darker theme
- It is permanent after drying
- Smooth application
- Sharpens well
- Not ideal for brighter art pieces
- Does not erase
- Some tints too similar to each other
Caran d'Ache Classic Neocolor II Water-Soluble Pastels
(Best Watercolor Pencils for Card Making)
Caran d’Ache Classic Neocolor II Water-Soluble pastels will apply luminous color and stunning details to your art. If you order this set, you will get 30 watercolor pencils that make a perfect tool for beginners or experts. I personally recommend this brand because it has quality art products for more than 80 years.
They have paints, pencils, pastels, brushes and more. Also, their tools conform to EN71 (CR) and ASTM D4236 standards for art materials. You can use these watercolor pencils on different surfaces like paper, glass, cardboard, and illuminated panels or signs. They have nice coverage and can be used wet and dry.
- Provides more versatile ranges of use
- Can be used on various surfaces
- Best watercolor pencils for fabric
- Able to use both dry and wet techniques
- Makes drawing finer lines possible
- Can leave behind paint clots
- Does not dry instantly
- Low durability
Faber-Castel FC117524 Albrecht Durer Artist Watercolor Pencils
(Best Watercolor Pencils for Artist)
Another amazing set by this brand is their Albrecht Durer Artist watercolor pencils that have gained the respect of creative minds all over the world. They have uncomparable properties and make a great tool for professional artists. If you want to buy a top-quality set of watercolor pencils, this is the right choice.
They deliver unsurpassed watercolor vibrancy and effects. You can transform the colored surface with broad or fine brush strokes in order to reveal the complete power of the colors and see why people love them. Now, let’s summarize the pros and cons of this booming set before you make your final purchase.
- Can be used as classic watercolors
- Gives off consistent pigments
- Colors become permanent when dry
- Leaves no pigment behind
- It leaves very little space for corrections when they are dry
- Do not have much pigment
- Users report damaged package
Derwent Inktense Pencil
Derwent Inktense Pencils represent water-soluble, vibrant ink pencils that combine the strength of pens and ink with the flexibility of wash and line. You can use them to make strong vivid tones and wash over with water for a translucent effect. Once dry, the color becomes permanent and can be used with other media. Also, the set conforms to ASTM D4236. If you purchase this set, you will get 24 colors in a tin box.
- Can be used to make detailed sketches
- Becomes permanent after drying
- Provide a vibrant range of colors with a lot of depth
- The Inktense pencils are available in different set sizes
- Not ideal for drawing on large surfaces
- They are not the best watercolor pencils for dry use
- A limited number of lighter colored pencils
Prismacolor Premier makes the perfect tool for creating shimmering effects. Paring water-soluble cores with a brush help you sketch flowing liquids. The pigments of this set have a great solubility for smooth laydown. If you want lightfast, richly-saturated colors that make a great tool for adult coloring book, this set is for you. You can use the pencils wen for effects and dry in order to match the Prismacolor palette.
- Affordable price
- Has high-quality pigments
- Very good fit for beginners
- Can be used wet and dry
- Great solubility
- Limited color selection
- The wood casing can split during sharpening
- Low set quality
LYRA Aquacolor Water-Soluble Wax Crayons
If you are a professional artist who is looking for a new way to explore and express your creativity, look no further than LYRA Aquacolor Crayons. They represent a water-soluble set of wax crayons with a high pigmentation which results in intense color brilliancy and high lightfastness. Also, they are easy to blend.
If you want a wide variety of colors that are AP certified non-toxic and delivered in a compact tin case, I recommend this set for you. You can use these pencils for sketch design, draw and boost your artworks. Now, let’s summarize the most important pros and cons of this top-rated set before your final purchase.
- Provides intensely bright colors
- Extremely easy to use
- High pigmentation gives you rich blend
- AP certified non-toxic
- A lot of pigment spillage that can get onto the fingers
- The pigment looks weird on paper
- Some of the users complain about package issues
Derwent 32883 Water Color Pencils
Derwent 32883 Watercolor pencils make the perfect tool for both professionals and beginners who look for a new way to express their creativity. I like these pencils because they deliver sturdy precision, they are easy to sharpen and can be used for a long time. If you want break-resistant tools, this set is for you.
You will get 24 water-soluble colors that will help you make rich textured lines when wet and soft edges when dry. The pigment of these pencils transfers to paper because of the softer formulation.
This turns them into the ideal tools for layering and blending. Also, for the best results, combine them with other Derwent products like water brush set, technique brushes, paper pads, canvas pencil wrap and more.
- Very affordable
- Perfect fit for the beginner painter
- It is vibrant on soft and lightly pigmented colors
- The lead of these pencils has improved durability
- Very effective blending and mixing
- The colors are dull
- Color depth is nothing special
- Not ideal for large pieces of work
- Sometimes color dries up extremely fast, and you may need to reapply the water
Staedtler Ergosoft Aquarell
(Best Watercolor Pencils for Beginners)
Staedtler Ergosoft aquarell set delivers impressive pencils with richly-colored soft lead and an ergonomic triangular form. They come in a stand-up case that will keep your watercolor tools organized. The wood comes from certified sustainably managed forests. Now, let’s check out the pros and cons of these tools.
- Vibrant colors
- Very affordable
- Includes richly colored soft lead
- Has a stand-up box to keep the pencils organized
- The triangular shape gives you a very comfortable grip
- Soft at laying down colors
- Work great on black paper
- The cores appear to be scratchy in some of the pencils in the set
- Lack of color options
- Overpriced compared to the other brands
- Does not include a color name on the barrel
- The lead size is small
(Best Watercolor Pencils for Wood)
Staedtler Karat Aquarell Premium watercolor pencils deliver a broad range of creative, stunning effects. If you want a set of 24 brilliant lightfast colors that have a great blending quality, this product is for you.
They have smooth color-intensive performance and comes in a beautiful storage tin. However, in order to decide if this set is right for you, please check the most important pros and cons before you purchase.
- Smooth application
- Has deep and rich hues
- Can be used on different surfaces like paper and wood
- Perfect for wet and dry cycles
- Has a comfortable hexagonal shape
- The nice metal tin protects the pencils
- Pencils come pre-sharpened
- The lead is easy to breakable during sharpening
- A bit expensive
Sanford Prismacolor Premier Water-Soluble Colored Pencils
(Best Watercolor Pencils for Coloring Books)
Sanford Prismacolor Premier Water-Soluble Colored Pencils deliver richly-saturated, lightfast colors. If you want tools for adult coloring books, this set is for you. Just pair with a brush and the water-soluble cores help you sketch flowing liquids and create shimmering effects. You can use them both wet or dry.
- Produce deep, thick and creamy colors
- Smooth and easy to combine
- The lightfastness of these pencils is exceptional
- Perfect for shading and blending
- The largest variety of color
- Not ideal for professional artwork
- Can wear down quickly
- Pretty fragile
Faber-Castell Graphite Aquarelle Water-soluble Pencils
Faber-Castell Graphite Aquarelle Water-Soluble Pencils have water-soluble smooth graphite. Use a wet brush when drawing to turn parts of your artworks into a wash or dip the pencil tip in water before you draw, making a soft, smooth line. This set is great for watercolor painting, mixed media, and sketches.
The leads in these tools are bonded to prevent breakage and are varnish with environmentally-friendly, water-based varnish. The assorted set of five includes a single pencil in each hardness and a No. 6 round watercolor brush. However, before you buy this product, let’s review the most important pros and cons.
- Able to achieve far greater depth and variance of shades
- Affordable price
- A very smooth drawing water-soluble graphite
OOKU Watercolor Pencils Artist Set
(Best Watercolor Pencils on a Budget)
Ooku watercolor pencils artist set has 48 tools with extra coloring pencils wool canvas wrap, watercolor brush, and pencil sharpener. It is perfect for newbies, semi-professionals, and professionals. If you want a set that is professionally created for artists with vibrant pigments and soft shadows, this set is for you.
They have soft cores for creating creamy textures, easy blending, and super smooth color laydown when wet or added to wet surfaces. You can use them to paint wet or draw dry on both wet and dry mediums.
- Comfortable roll-up carrier
- Very soft application
- Includes a free brush and a sharpener
- A wide spectrum of bright colors
- The color is laid very smooth when wet
- Pretty cheap price
- 100% lifetime replacement warranty
- The loops are a little bit large and the pencils can fall out easily
- Tips tend is easy to break during sharpening
- The watercolor pencils lead is easily breakable while sharpening
US Sense 36 Watercolor Pencils Set
(Best Water Pencils for Students)
US Sence Watercolor Pencils set features 36 artist quality colored tools that rival the leading brands for color selection, value for money and high pigment concentration. They have thick, soft cores that make them perfect for shadows and shading. They come in a durably built high quality, break-resistant wood.
If you want to get a vibrant and more colorful effect, just dissolve them in water and start painting. They are perfect for professionals, school supplies and budding artists. Also, they make a great birthday gift. If you want to order this set, take a quick look at the most important pros and cons before you purchase it.
- Very convenient iron box for storage
- Very durable
- Bright assorted colors
- Includes a free brush
- Very good quality for a bargain price
- The color selection includes more brown and red shades
- Lead is fragile
- Waxy and do not color well
Strokes Art 48 Piece Artist Grade High-Quality Watercolor Water Soluble Colored Pencil Set
(Best Watercolor Pencils on Canvas)
Strokes Art 48 Piece Artist Grade High-Quality Watercolor Water-Soluble Colored Pencil Set is produced with carefully picked pigments in order to obtain higher color concentration and deliver depth to colors.
You can use them with and dry and blend them together in order to get different tones and effects. The best part about these tools is that they have color-correlated barrel tips matching every color for easy identification. Also, they will arrive in a compact box for easy storage and organization when not in use.
If you prefer a set of pencils with soft leads for super shading and blending, this set is for you. Non-toxic, environmentally-friendly and premium quality are some of the features that I like about these pencils. If you want to order this set, please check the most important pros and cons before you make a purchase.
- Comes pre-sharpened
- Very smooth color
- Worth for a price
- Easy to use and maintenance
- Able to mix well
- Rough when using on paper
- Very scratchy
- Does not blend well
Colore Watercolor Pencils
Colore watercolor pencils have vibrant colors and can be used for both wet and dry artistic applications. They have pre-sharpened break-resistant 3.4mm cores and they come in a metal tin case for storage. If you are looking for the ideal gift for birthdays, Christmas, Thanksgiving, School Supplies and much more.
Each watercolor pencil is made to retain its complete intensity in order to create perfect for expressing any artistic talents either on sketches or watercolor presentations with 72 colors. They are lightweight, durable, and portable. And a little goes a long way. Now, let’s review the main pros and cons of this set.
- Very affordable
- A large variety of colors
- Easy to use for beginners
- Very good organized
- Nice tin
- They perfectly blend and mix with each other
- Can be difficult to remove pencils from the tray
- The pigmentation may be skippy If using just for dry coloring
- Does not include paintbrush as advertised
- Too much light color paints and not include dark
Artist's Choice 72 Pack Watercolor Pencils
(Best Watercolor Pencils for Travel)
Artist’s Choice Watercolor Pencils is a set of premium grade water-soluble coloring tools for creating a great watercolor effect with a brush (included) and water. They are perfect for shading and blending. If you order the set, you will get greens, blues, reds, yellows, purples, browns, blacks, purples and white.
They come in a convenient tri-folding carrying case that is perfect for traveling, storing in a desk, locker or your backpack. I personally recommend this set for artists because it is made and developed by artists and makes a great choice for both beginners and professionals. Now, let’s summarize the pros and cons.
- Decent quality
- Nice Metal Tin
- Perfect choice for beginners
- A great spectrum of vibrant colors
- Convenient folding case
- Includes brush
- The lead is harder
- Difficult to blending when dry
- Application is not quite smooth
- Lead does not contain a lot of color pigments
Faber-Castell – GRIP Watercolor EcoPencils
Next, I have another Faber-Castell watercolor eco pencils set that features vibrant colors that make the perfect tool for making a vibrant watercolor wash. They come pigment-packed and pre-sharpened. Also, you get a free paintbrush. If you want beautiful, rich colors that are highly-pigmented, this set is for you.
They have ergonomic design and grip dots in order to provide better control. You can use them for kids because they are non-toxic, acid-free and conform to ASTM D-4236. And they have break-resistant leads that will not fall out and are easy to sharpen. Now, let’s take a look at the main pros and cons of this set.
- Includes a paintbrush
- Ergonomic dotted grip
- It is non-toxic and acid-free
- Various vibrant colors
- Unbreakable formula
- Very good price
- Able to be used for face painting
- Lead can be off-centered
- The inserted brush adds too much water
- Some customers report that pencils do not give enough pigment to use as watercolors
ARTEZA Professional Watercolor Pencils
(Best Watercolor Pencils for Professional Artists)
Last but not least, I will review a popular brand of pencils – ARTEZA professional waterproof and water-soluble tools that make blending and layering very easy. They are perfect for making unique effects that lend drama to your creations. If you want highly-pigmented colors that add depth to your art, this set is for you. You get them in a protective case. It makes a nice birthday gift for kids, teenagers, and adults.
- The hexagonal barrel provides a comfortable grip
- The color of the barrel represents the actual coloring pigment
- Come with a portable and sturdy tin case
- The rainbow of vibrant colors
- Comes pre-sharpened
- Very good price
- It is non-toxic and suitable for kids and teens
- Amazing for wet and dry performance
- Do not leak through pages
- Not all the color pigments have a high lightfast index
- Include 2-3 similar colors in one pigment category
- Some of the customers complain that the color doesn’t always match the barrel
Why Use Watercolor Pencils?
Watercolor pencils allow you to include more detail in your art. Their sharp point allows you to lay down more visual details unlike brushes and if you want a particularly crisp line, you do not have to add water.
When to Use Watercolor Pencils?
You can use watercolor pencils as a substitute for regular colored pencils. They deliver the same type of look. You can use them without water first like typical pencils, then go over the colors with a wet brush.
How Watercolor Pencils Work?
They look just like regular pencils and give the same results. The only difference between regular and watercolor pencils is that they react to water and deliver a similar effect to watercolor paints.
Also, their binding is water-soluble. You can add water to get more pigment which results in getting intense colors.
How Watercolor Pencils are Made?
They have a water-soluble binder that releases pigment when water is applied. Color can be applied to the surface with the pencil and then brushed with water in order to “activate” the medium.
They offer a similar result to watercolor paints. However, they are not the same tool and function quite differently.
How to Use Watercolor Pencils?
You can use watercolor pencils in 2 different ways. The first one is to draw a spot of color on the surface and brush it with water. This will deliver a spot of watercolor that could be used as a palette. The second way is rubbing your brush directly against the tip of the pencil. Refer to this article for a detailed tutorial.
How to Use Watercolor Pencils for Beginners?
Although using watercolor pencils is not as hard as many people imagine, absolute beginners might find it confusing. However, do not worry because using them is like using regular pencils.
Please refer to this guide on how to use watercolor pencils for absolute beginners and learn how to use them, step-by-step.
How to Watercolor Pencil Drawings?
Watercolor pencils are similar to regular colored pencils and provide a similar result. You can use them for drawing, coloring, layering, and blending. Please, watch this video on how to use them for drawings.
How to Watercolor Pencil Flowers?
If you cannot make up your mind whether you should paint or draw flowers with watercolor pencils, ask yourself, why choose? The mixed-media project in this guide combines watercolors and colored pencils.
How to Use Watercolor Pencils on Fabric?
First, you should wet your brush before you wet your watercolor colors. This leaves the brush with a lot of pigment and makes you ready to spread it on fabric. Please, check this guide on how to do it properly.
Are Staedtler Watercolor Pencils Good?
Yes, in fact, one of their lines, the Stadtler Professional watercolor pencils are one of the greatest sets in the market. They have a broad range of colors. Also, they have great blending and spreading capabilities.
Which is Better Staedtler or Faber Castell?
Unlike Staedtler, Faber Caster produces more abroad than at home. This brand has factories in Asia and South America but stays committed to its German presence. A decade ago, this brand introduced grip pencils that have painted dots on the outside to make it easier to use and hold. Both brands have nice and high-quality watercolor tools. It is up to personal preference which one you choose to be faithful to.
Is Prismacolor Better Than Faber Castell?
Prismacolor pencils are produced by an Americal brand and are wax-based. Faber Castell pencils, on the other hand, are oil-based and manufactured by a German company that exists since 1761. Faber Castell tools are quality pencils, however, they are more expensive than others. Overall, they are both amazing.
Can You Erase Watercolor Pencils?
Yes, when dry, watercolor pencils can be erased and lifted, depending on the nature of the pigment and how staining it is. In order to erase watercolor pencils, you should allow the surface dry completely. Use a vinyl eraser, a battery-powered or electrical eraser that is nice for erasing watercolor pencils' mistakes.
What Paper do You Use For Watercolor?
Arches papers are highly-recommended for watercolor pencils but you can also use them for calligraphy, printmaking, digital printing, drawing, gouache, acrylics and more. They are created of pure cotton fiber.
Can You Watercolor on Canvas?
Regular canvas, even if it has been gessoed is usually not absorbent enough to work with watercolors. They could lift off too easily, which would make overlaying or blending the colors particularly difficult.
How do You Flatten Watercolor Paper After Painting?
If you are a beginner, please follow these few steps on how to flatten watercolor paper after painting.
- Mist the back of the paper with water using a fine mist
- Place the painting image-side down on the sketch paper
- Cover with another sheet of sketch paper or a towel
- Place weights on top (If you do not have weights, use books)
- Place the painting image-side down on the sketch paper
Do Watercolor Pencils Need Water?
Yes, watercolor pencils require the application of water, however, they can also be used dry. If you want to use them wet, make sure to work on a heavy board or watercolor paper that is thick and will not tear.
Can Watercolor Pencils be Used Without Water?
Just because watercolor pencils have “water” in their name, it does not mean that they have to be used with water. You can use them dry like your traditional pencils. After, go over the colors with a wet brush.
Watercolor Pencils vs Colored Pencils
Watercolor pencils have a water-soluble pigment, unlike colored pencils that have a binder of wax or oil. The oily-waxed base of colored pencils makes them simple to mix and layer colors. They can be used for burnishing. Which type of pencils you choose, depends on your creative needs and personal preference.
Arteza Colored Pencils vs Prismacolor
Arteza colored pencils come in a set of 12, 24 and 36. However, maybe this will be boosted in the future. According to reviews, they are soft to apply, have a strong pigment and lay down well, with dense bright and creamy washes when wet. They are blendable and layerable just like Prismacolor. Both brands offer high-quality watercolor pencils that meet the needs of professionals, semi-professionals, and beginners.
Watercolor Pencils vs Pens
Watercolor pencils give you the best of both worlds of drawing and painting. They deliver similar results as colored pencils but act differently when water is applied because they have a water-soluble binder. If you doubt whether you should choose watercolor pencils over pens, keep in mind that pens make a bold and strong line that is easy to see. However, watercolor pencils come at a low cost and deliver flexibility.
Watercolor Pencils vs Polychromos
You will not get the same results when using watercolor pencils and polychromos. They have a different pigment. One is oil-based and does not dissolve in water, while the other is water-soluble and dissolves in water. Water activation brightens colors and allows moving the colors with water. However, you will not be able to build up layers with your watercolor pencils the same way you can with the Polychromos.
Watercolor Pencils vs Watercolor Markers
Watercolor pencils have a water-soluble binder that releases pigment when water is applied. Color can be applied to the surface with the pencils and brushed with water in order to activate the medium after. This delivers a look that is very similar to a watercolor painting. Watercolor markers, on the other hand, provide the perfect balance by combining both the best features of watercolor paint and a water brush.
Watercolor markers offer complete control over your artwork and can make a similar light-wash effect as you would with traditional watercolor paint. You will get impressively deep and vibrant colors as well.
Watercolor Pencils vs Pastel Pencils
Watercolor pencils have a water-soluble binder that releases pigment when water is applied. Color can be applied to the surface with the pencils and brushed with water in order to activate the medium after. This delivers a look that is very similar to a watercolor painting. Pastel pencils are not traditional colored pencils. They have compressed material with a pencil. Some think that creating details with soft pastels very hard. Also, they can be combined with pastel pencils but they are not as good as watercolor pencils.
Watercolor Pencils vs Inktense
Watercolor pencils have a hexagonal barrel that provides a good grip for subtle, more detailed work like botanical subjects or architectural. Inktense pencils, on the other hand, have a rounded barrel for broad, expressive strokes covering bigger areas. Which type you choose depends on your personal preferences.
Watercolor Pencils vs Copic Markers
Watercolor pencils have a water-soluble binder that releases pigment when water is applied. Color can be applied to the surface with the pencils and brushed with water in order to activate the medium after. This delivers a look that is very similar to a watercolor painting. Copic markers, on the other hand, have a dual tip and are refillable. They have a good reputation and a high price but also offer super versatility.
Watercolor Pencils or Paint
The difference between paint and watercolor pencils is that watercolor pencils represent a painting and a drawing in one, while the paint is a painting medium only. Watercolor pencils need to be sharpened, however, they do not require a color mixing palette as watercolor paint does. Which one you choose is up to you. If you need a 2-in-1 product for both drawing and painting, I suggest that you pick the pencils.
Derwent Watercolor Pencils vs Inktense
Both pencils are highly-blendable but, their formulation varies. Inktense pencils have a hard and waxy laydown. Their cores are thicker and feel chunkier to hold. Watercolor pencils transfer easily on paper.
Derwent Watercolor Pencils vs Faber Castell
If you want a professional set of pencils at a low cost, Derwent and Faber Castell should be on your list of brands you can choose from. They both have high-quality pencils that are highly-blendable and rich.
Derwent Watercolor Pencils vs Prismacolor
Derwent watercolor pencils have a soft almost creamy feel when used dry, however, they are not as soft as Prismacolor. Still, they are much softer than Faber-Castell Polychromos. Both pencils provide a deep and thick color that is easy to apply and blends perfectly. Which one you choose depends on your needs.
Colored Pencils vs Watercolor Paint
Colored pencils have a binder of wax or oil. They can be used for both drawing and coloring. Watercolor paint, on the other hand, is a coloring medium only. And you do not need a palette with colored pencils.
Faber Castell Watercolor Pencils vs Classic
Classic colored pencils have a waxy-oily base that makes them easy to mix and layer colors with/without water. They can be used for burnishing. Watercolor pencils can be used with and without water. Also, if you want to lighten areas of your artwork, I would suggest that you purchase a set of watercolor pencils.
Faber Castell Watercolor Pencils vs Polychromos
Faber Castell watercolor pencils offer a thick and textured application. However, if you add a little bit of water, they become super buttery. Polychromos, on the other hand, has a great color intensity and good blending. Also, they come in a convenient storage case and have a great color selection. The only con is that they come at a higher price. Which one you pick depends on your needs and personal preference.
Watercolor Pencils Techniques for Beginners
If you are a beginner, you probably think that watercolor pencils are hard to use, however, you are very wrong. You can master using them in no time if you practice on your own or watch online guides like the one I uploaded before this paragraph. And check out this guide if you want to learn amazing techniques.
Watercolor Pencils Tutorial
Both beginners and professionals can find use in a good tutorial on watercolor pencils. So, I suggest that you watch this one and learn new tips and tricks that could boost and improve your watercolor artwork.
Best Way to Sharpen Watercolor Pencils
Many artists swear by sharpening their watercolor pencils with a small, super sharp knife, Exacto knife or a scalpel. However, you can also use a special sharpener for watercolor pencils. Watch this tutorial on how to sharpen watercolor pencils properly. I promise that this will save you precious time and money.
If you want a set of watercolor pencils for pros, look no further than the Cretacolor Woodless Aquarelle Pencils and Faber-Castell Albrecht Durer Magnus Watercolor Pencil Tin. However, if you are on a budget and want to buy a quality set at a low cost, OOKU Watercolor Pencils Artist Set is the perfect set for you.
Hopefully, my buying guide has helped you learn more about watercolor pencils and helped you choose a perfect set for you. Feel free to ask any questions associated with the subject in the comments below.