Want to do some painting without too much of a mess? Try a paint marker! Unlike regular markers, which are filled with various types of ink, or watercolor markers, paint markers or pens lay down opaque colors that sit on surfaces like paint. The paint marker was first patented in 1926 as a “fountain brush” with a sponge tip and a reservoir filled with paint. Nowadays, paint pens come in the form of a marker with a felt tip available in different widths and a barrel containing oil or water-based paint. Paint markers are great for use on paper, of course, as well as glass, wood, stone, plastic and ceramics. Most of these pens require activation by first shaking them, then pressing the nib to the paper to release the ink. The best set of paint markers for your next project is probably listed below.

1. Uni Posca Paint Markers

Our favorite paint markers strike the right balance between price, consistency and ease of use. Felt-tip tips seamlessly lay down ultra-opaque, incredibly pigmented paint that is water soluble when wet and water resistant when completely dry for a consistent matte finish. This happens fairly quickly when left alone, making them ideal for layering. They are easy to wipe off when applied to non-porous surfaces and remain permanent on porous materials such as wood or paper. Suitable for users of all ages, Posca markers are sold individually or in sets like this 29-pack, which includes markers in ‘natural’ colors like sky blue and coral pink, as well as metallic silver and gold . You can also mix them to create more colors! Notably, medium-sized tips can be reversed once you’ve worn down one end.

To buy:
Uni Posca paint markers

$54.65

2. Sharpie Paint Manufacturers

These matte markers offer Sharpie’s famous permanence and more. They are specially designed to draw not only on porous surfaces, but also on non-porous materials such as glass and terracotta. Fast-drying and bold, the oil-based paint distributes evenly so you always feel like you’re in control. The pens are available in 15 beautiful shades and four tip sizes (Extra Fine, Fine, Medium, and Bold) and are sold in sets like this fashionable five-color pack.

Best paint markers for canvas, ceramics,

To buy:
Sharpie Paint Manufacturers

$9.99

3. MTN 5mm Water Based Paint Markers

A great option for fine art, Montana’s MTN water-based paint markers are cool and uncommon: this set of 20 medium-tip markers, for example, includes traditional artist colors like quinacridone magenta , dioxazine violet and azo orange plus handy basics like titanium white and carbon black. Paint dries to a matte finish and is easy to clean with soap and water when wet; seal it with Montana varnish after drying for a water and abrasion resistant finish. As the tips are very responsive, you can vary your pressure to create different effects, perfect for detail illustrators. The pens also feature a valve system that regulates the liquid content to help achieve precise application. Finally, Montana markers are also great for the eco-conscious as you can refill them or replace their nibs.

Best paint markers for canvas, ceramics,

To buy:
MTN 5mm Water Based Paint Markers

$57.48

4. Sakura Pen-Touch Paint Marker

Artists looking for the perfect paint pen would be remiss to overlook Sakura’s contributions to the medium. The oil-based paint leaves vibrant, raised color on almost any surface, including metal, wood, glass, plastic, paper and stone, and it’s both waterproof and fade resistant. discoloration. The odorless, xylene-free paint also dries quickly, so smudging isn’t an issue. What sets Sakura’s Pen-Touch tools apart are their replaceable tips which, at 1.0mm, are ideal for finer lines and detail work. Color options aren’t extensive, but they’re luscious, with a focus on metallics, black and white, and standard primary and secondary colors.

To buy:
Sakura Pen-Touch Paint Marker

$21.79

5. Uchida Decocolor Paint Marker Set

These markers feature vibrantly colored oil-based ink that dispenses with minimal pressure. It also dries very quickly thanks to the addition of xylene to its formula, the only product on our list containing this ingredient. Note that xylene is a paint solvent so it may not be the option for youngsters. But because it doubles as a protective layer, it’s weatherproof and can be used for outdoor art. You can use these markers on many surfaces, including metal, wood, porcelain, and stone. We also like the feel of the barrel in the hand, providing a thick, ultra-soft grip. The DecoColor range offers 30 wonderful colors, but you can only buy them in curated sets like this pastel-themed one.

Best paint markers for canvas, ceramics,

To buy:
Uchida Decocolor Paint Marker Set

$17.15

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