Best Colored Pencils of 2019 Complete Reviews with Comparison

Best Colored Pencils Reviews

Colored pencils are everyone’s favorite whether you are a beginner trying your hands on coloring books or a professional artist. There are no specific colored pencils that are best for everyone because every artist has his own distinct style of playing with colors. Some like to fill their portraits with decent colors whereas some prefer deeply pigmented colors. There are plenty of colored pencils available out there. You need to get the best set for yourself according to your preferences.

In this article, we have picked up five best-colored pencils that are suitable for beginners and professionals as well. If you are interested in knowing more about them then, keep reading.

Top 5 Colored Pencils Comparison Chart


Staedtler Ergosoft Colored Pencils
They feature 3 mm lead and a triangular barrel which offers a firm grip to the artist. The single set consists of 24 distinct colors varying from light to dark shades. These pencils come in an easel case which can be held in the standing position. They are allotted particular slots which keep the pencils safe and secured.

Sargent Art Colored Pencils
The single set contains 72 different shades varying from mild to bold tones. The pencils are secured in a tin case which keeps them safe and prevents from any breakage. The core of the pencil is soft and durable which is perfect in offering an artistic quality. They are suitable for pencil drawings, portraits and other illustrations.

Crayola Colored Pencils
The single set contains 50 distinct colors that offer perfect pigmentation when transferred on paper. The core of the pencils is wax-based and glides really smoothly. The pencil set comes in a travel case which is quite handy and keeps the pencils safe in the allotted space. They are perfect for the artists who want their coloring to be hassle-free and also offer satisfactory performance.

LYRA Rembrandt Polycolor Art Pencils
These pencils come in a sturdy wooden box which gives extra protection to the pencils. The single set contains 100 plus colored pencils with distinct shades. The box also contains a sharpener, paper wipers, eraser and sandpaper. The pencils are quite versatile and can be used on paper, cardboard, textiles and synthetic materials.

Faber-Castell Metallic Colored Pencils
These colored pencils are perfect for black paper as they offer an amazing glaring effect. They are Eco-Friendly and come in 12 distinct shades. The larger set contains 240 different shades that are suitable for the adults. The pencils come in a cardboard box placed in different compartments. The leads are resistant to breakage and offer a smooth and pigmented core as well.

Best Colored Pencils Reviews

Here are the complete reviews of the best-colored pencils along with their pros and cons.

1. Staedtler Ergosoft Colored Pencils

These colored pencils are suitable for young budding artists. They feature a smooth and shiny barrel which gives a firm grip to the artists. The set offers 24 distinct shades having mild pigmentation. Apart from this, the pencil features colored wooden barrel which looks quite attractive and traditional as well.

Product Highlights

Let’s have a look at some of the highlighted features of Staedtler Colored Pencils.

  • Visual Appeal

The wooden barrel has a specific colored coating with the company name and logo integrated on it with a silver stamp. The triangular shaped barrel gives a comfortable hold over the pencil. They have soft and deeply pigmented cores that are secured with the Anti-breaking system which enhances the durability of the pencil.

  • Packaging

The pencil set comes in an attractive easel case in which pencils are placed in a sorted manner. It can be held in a standing position just for the better identification of the colors. The design of the case is quite sturdy and durable.

  • Performance

The pencils can be easily sharpened even with the help of traditional sharpener. The cores are really soft and creamy and give a decent pigmentation when transferred on the paper. Blending and layering are not recommended as you have to apply the shade number of times in order to get the desired pigmentation.

What’s to Like About the Staedtler Ergosoft Colored Pencils?

Have a look at the pros of Staedtler Colored Pencils:

  •    Gives really deep pigmentation on black paper
  •    Soft and attractive barrel
  •    Creamy and durable cores
  •    Sturdy easel case

What’s not to Like About the Staedtler Ergosoft Colored Pencils?

Here are a few cons of Staedtler Colored Pencils:

  •    Not suitable for professional artists
  •    The pencils don’t give the exact pigmentation which is shown on the barrel

Best Colored Pencils for Drawing

2. Sargent Art Colored Pencils

They come in a sturdy tin case that keeps the pencils safe and secured in the allotted slots. The set contains 72 distinct shades that vary from mild to dark tones. They are suitable for both professionals and adult coloring books.

Product Highlights

Let’s have a look at some of the highlighted features of Sargent Art Colored Pencils.

  • Visual Appeal

These colored pencils feature a round barrel along with the end which is dipped in a specific color which results in easy identification. There is no need to create different swatches as the name of a color is already written with a golden stamp on the barrel. The barrel is covered with a metallic strip which makes the surface smooth and glossy. The core of the pencil is really sturdy and can be sharpened with ease.

  • Performance

The soft cores are capable of transferring the dark tones with ease but with the light tones, you need a little bit of layering. You can expect a limited performance as they are not really good at blending and creating textures.

  • Packaging

The packaging is quite sturdy and the tin case can keep the pencils safe for a longer duration of time. The pencils are placed in the allotted slots for easy color identification.

What’s to Like About the Sargent Art Colored Pencils?

Let’s have a look at the pros of Sargent Colored Pencils:

  •    Sturdy tin case storage
  •    Doesn’t contain any toxic material
  •    Price range is quite reasonable
  •    Perfect for both young and professional artists

What’s not to Like About the Sargent Art Colored Pencils?

Following are some cons of Sargent Colored Pencils:

  •    Pigmentation of the light tones is really mild
  •    Blending is not recommended

Best Colored Pencils For Adults

3. Crayola Colored Pencils

The single set offers a decent number of color collections and is suitable for adult coloring books. The colors are mostly bright and feature a deep pigmentation when transferred to the paper.

Product Highlights

Have a look at some of the highlights of Crayola Colored Pencils.

  • Visual Appeal

The colored pencils come pre-sharpened with a wax-based pointed tip for more precise coloring. They feature a round and smooth barrel which is covered with the color that matches the core of the pencil.

  • Pigmentation

The colors offer a rich pigmentation and set mostly contains the dark tones that are perfect for blending and layering. The softcore also allows a smooth shading experience.

  • Packaging

The pencil set comes in really simple cardboard that doesn’t offer any extra-protection to the pencils. The pencils are light in weight that overcomes the flaw of packaging. But, from an artist point of view, it could be sturdier so that pencils could stay safe for a longer period of time.

What’s to Like About the Crayola Colored Pencils?

Have a look at some pros of Crayola Colored Pencils.

  •    Vibrant shades collection
  •    Affordable price range
  •    Suitable for both beginners and adults
  •    Doesn’t contain any toxic material

What’s not to Like About the Crayola Colored Pencils?

Following are some cons of Crayola Colored Pencils:

  •    These colored pencils are not suitable for blending
  •    The light tones are less pigmented

Best Colored Pencils for Coloring Books

4. LYRA Rembrandt Polycolor Art Pencils

These colored pencils are mostly used for pencil drawings, graphics, and illustrations. They come in an affordable price range and are really versatile. They are only suitable for professional artists. The single set offers a vast variety of color collection and can be used on wood, synthetic materials, and textiles.

Product Highlights

Let’s have a look at some of the highlighted features of LYRA Rembrandt Polycolor Art Pencils.

  • Visual Appearance

These colored pencils feature a round barrel along with the ends dipped in a specific color. The barrel offers a firm grip to the artist and is integrated with the company name. The core of the pencil is really smooth and transfers the desired pigmentation when applied on paper.

  • Packaging

The pencils come in a sturdy wooden box which can be held in the standing position on the table. The packaging is quite attractive and the pencils are placed in a sorted manner along with the other accessories like sharpener, eraser, knife, and sandpaper.

  • Durability

The barrel of the pencil is really strong but the durability of the core can be questioned. The pencils feature a 4mm wax-based core which is really smooth and tends to break while sharpening or when pressure is applied. That’s why you need to be highly cautious while blending and shading.

  • Pigmentation

You can’t expect a deep pigmentation in just one pass, especially with the oil-based cores. You need to layer a number of times in order to get the desired color even for the dark tones.

What’s to Like About the LYRA Rembrandt Polycolor Art Pencils?

Following are some pros of LYRA Art Pencils:

  •    Really good for blending
  •    A wide range of color collection
  •    Safe and secure packaging
  •    Reasonable price range as compared to the other wax-based colored pencils

What’s not to Like About the LYRA Rembrandt Polycolor Art Pencils?

Following are some cons of LYRA Art Colored Pencils:

  •    The core of the pencil is not durable and tends to break more often while sharpening
  •    Despite being a wax-based core, the pencils appear a bit scratchy while transferring color on the paper

Best Colored Pencils Reviews

5. Faber-Castell Metallic Colored Pencils

The single set contains 12 distinct colors which are highly shimmering and pigmented. They are suitable for both young children and adults. The pencils are Eco-Friendly and highly recommended for the school children as they can add some dazzling effects to their project by using them.

Product Highlights

Have a look at some of the highlights of Faber-Castell Colored Pencils.

  • Visual Appeal

The design of the barrel is quite durable and sturdy as it is made from the forest wood. It offers a comfortable hold and the surface is really shiny and smooth just like the color-dipped cores. The barrel features the company name along with the name of the color for easy identification.

  • Packaging

These colored pencils come in a simple cardboard box that offers very less protection and is not durable at all. It is slightly disappointing for an artist as the packaging could be a bit more attractive and sturdy.

  • Pigmentation

The pencils feature ultra-smooth cores that easily glide on paper and transfer rich pigmented colors. The pencils offer a shiny effect and work wonders when applied on the black paper. You don’t have to struggle to get the rich pigmentation as the pencils offer quite saturated color in just one pass. Apart from these, the pencils have really great blending capabilities and you can create distinct textures through layering.

What’s to Like About the Faber-Castell Metallic Colored Pencils?

Following are some pros of Faber-Castell Colored Pencils:

  •    Rich and shiny pigmentation
  •    Strong barrel
  •    Perfect for blending and layering
  •    Really work well on black paper

What’s not to Like About the Faber-Castell Metallic Colored Pencils?

Have a look at the cons of Faber-Castell Colored Pencils:

  •    Frail packaging
  •    You have to struggle on white paper in terms of pigmentation

Best Colored Pencils for Adult Coloring Books

Colored Pencils Buyer’s Guide

Following are a few things which you need to keep in mind before buying the colored pencils for yourself.

Design

When you go for purchasing the colored pencils, the first thing you notice is the design of the pencil. Well, if you are buying pencils for your kids then, choosing the fancy ones with a decent pigmentation makes sense. The kids are more familiar with the bright and fancy looks rather than the formal ones. But, if you are a professional artist then, looks should not be the priority for you. You would rather look for the features and durability of the pencil instead of just going by the design.

Type of Pencil

There is a vast range of colored pencils available in the market. You need to choose the best option for yourself depending on your artistic level. If you are a beginner, you would look for the pencil set that offers a decent pigmentation, durable design, a reasonable number of color collection generally ranging from 24 to 36 colors and comes in an affordable price range.

On the other hand, if you are a professional artist then, you have to look at a number of features.

  •    Softcore as it will help you in blending and layering distinct colors
  •    Sturdy packaging as it will keep your pencils safe for a longer period of time
  •    Wide color collection varying from light too much deeper tones
  •    You can also opt for mechanical pencils if you don’t want the hassle of sharpening the core again and again

Wax or Oil-based Core

Oil-based cores are more on the professional side as compared to the wax-based ones. The pencil set featuring the oil-based core can be slightly expensive but it is worth your money. The oil-based core is more durable and offers a rich pigmentation. On the other hand, the wax-based core is more prone to breakage and doesn’t offer deep pigmentation.

Blend Control

If you are a fan of mixing and creating distinct layering effects then, you would go for the pencil colors that offer rich pigmentation and can be easily blended. Some colored pencils like Staedtler Ergosoft, Prismacolor Premier and Faber-Castell have great blending and shading capabilities.

Colored Pencils FAQ’s

What are the top brands for colored pencils?

There are plenty of brands that manufacture high-quality colored pencils. There is not one specific brand which is likable by all the professional artists as every artist has his own distinct style. Following are some brands that are quite popular among beginners and professionals as well.

  •    Prismacolor Premier
  •    Faber-Castell Polychromos
  •    Caran d’Ache Luminance
  •    Sargent Art
  •    Staedtler Ergosoft

How many pencils do you need to get started?

For professional artists, the answer to this question can’t be a specific number. Most of them like to stick to different brands in order to enhance their blending options. But, as far as beginners are concerned, starting with the basic decent and deep tones sounds a nice idea. The pencil set that offers 24 to 36 shades collection can be considered as an ideal option for all the artists who have just started their journey.

What are the best ways of blending colored pencils?

The colored pencils can be simply blended by layering the distinct colors. For the light tones, you need to apply a bit of pressure in order to get the rich pigmentation. Whereas, with the darker tones the blending becomes super easy. You can also use some solvents like alcohol, water and thinner if you know the right technique of using them on your colors.  

What are the various challenges faced by the artists while using colored pencils?

The colored pencils are definitely a great add on in the world of art and creativity. But, similar to the other things they do have some cons as well.

  •    Blending is not that simple with the pencils especially when you don’t get the desired pigmentation
  •    Some colored pencils don’t offer the saturated colors as shown on the packaging. So, in that case, you have to struggle a lot with layering.
  •    You have to be really focused while using the dark pigmented colors as they can’t be erased easily.
  •    The wax-based pencils are the most affordable option available out there but the wax bloom is surely an annoying feature that the artists have to face.

Are Prismacolor Pencils the Best?

When we talk about colored pencils, Prismacolor Premier Pencils are the most popular ones that you can find in almost every artist’s collection. The artistic-quality, softcore, durable design and a reasonable price range are some of the features that make these pencils stand out from all the options available out there.

Best Colored Pencils for Adult Coloring Books

Out of all the colored pencils listed above, Staedtler Ergosoft can be considered as an ideal option for the adult coloring books. They feature a really soft and durable core and offer a rich pigmentation along with a reasonable price range.

Best Colored Pencils for Drawing

If you are looking for the colored pencils for drawing then, Sargent Art can be an ideal pick for you. They come pre-sharpened and offer a soft and pointed core that offers a decent pigmentation. Also, the pencils are secured in a tin case in order to avoid any breakage.

Best Colored Pencils for Coloring Books

Crayola Colored Pencils are a suitable option for the coloring books. They are non-toxic and come pre-sharpened with a soft pointed tip. The colors are really rich and transfer a saturated pigmentation on the paper.

Final Verdict

Now, you have seen the various options for colored pencils available in the market. After going through the buyer’s guide, you must be able to figure out the best-colored pencils for yourself. LYRA Polycolor Art Pencils stand out from the above list of colored pencils as they offer high-quality pigmented color and come in sturdy packaging. The versatile and durable nature of the colored pencils definitely makes them the best option for all the artists.

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