Colored Pencils


Which Colored Pencils should I use?

Colored Pencils

Colored Pencils

There are hundreds of different colored pencil brands out there. Pencils are made of different materials, some are wax based, others are oil based. Some are expensive and have many colors in their range, others are more affordable. There can be differences in how they color. Some colored pencils need you to push hard to lay down color. Others only need a really light pressure and their color goes on easily. There are hard leads and soft leads. Some have vibrant intense colors and others have more muted colors. So many different kinds of colored pencils! So, how do you choose which type or brand of pencils is right for you?

Information by Pencil Brand

We have provided reviews by pencil brand. On each of the brand pages you’ll find:

  • Comments about my experience using the pencils;
  • Any recommendations I have for particular uses;
  • A color chart;
  • A link to other adult coloring pictures I’ve done using ONLY those pencils (where available).

Compare different pencils

To give you a good comparison, the same test picture has been used for all brands. The picture is a simple one but does have some small details in it so the pencils can be tested for how well they can be sharpened to color in tight spaces. The following colors have been used in each of the pictures: yellow, orange, red, pink, purple, light blue, dark blue, light green and dark green. These colors have been selected as most of the basic pencil packs for these brands have similar colors.

A comparison table of many different colored pencil brands is also available free to subscribers. The comparison table is based on my experience with those pencil brands. Many of the most popular brands have been included in the table.

Criteria for Comparison

The criteria used for comparing colored pencils in the table are:

  • Oil or wax based
  • Soft or hard lead
  • Barrel Shape
  • Color Identified on the barrel
  • Color on barrel accurately shows actual lead color
  • Quality of Leads – color laydown
  • Lead breakage
  • Easy to sharpen to a point using a basic sharpener
  • Pencil Dust (pigment crumbs during coloring)
  • Range of colors
  • Pencil set sizes
  • Open Stock available (able to purchase individual pencils)
  • Intensity of color (muted or vibrant)
  • Feel on Paper (scratchy, smooth, waxy)
  • Pressure is needed to get color onto the page (minimal, some, a lot)
  • How easy to blend colors without a blending medium (Easy / Mid / Hard)
  • Country of Origin
  • Country Manufactured (Made in)
  • Price Guide (eg $, $$, $$$, $$$$)
  • Website (where available)