The 5 Best Alcohol Markers of 2024

Best alcohol markers

More and more brands seem to release alcohol-based markers. It can be a bit overwhelming and difficult to find what you need, so I made a list of my top 5 best alcohol-based markers.

Disclaimer: In the name of full transparency, please be aware that this blog post
contains affiliate links and any purchases made through such links will result in a
small commission for me (at no extra cost for you).

What are the best alcohol-based markers?

1. Winsor & Newton Promarker Brush

Best Price-to-Quality Ratio

The Winsor & Newton Brushmarkers are in my opinion the overall best alcohol-based markers. They have a brush tip and a chisel tip. The brush nib is a little bit more to the flexible side which makes it great for coloring larger areas, but a little less ideal for drawing small details.

The Brushmarkers have a design that easily distinguishes between the brush side and the chisel side. On the brush side the cap curves into a point and on the chisel side it stays cylindrical. On the chisel side, the caps are marked with a sticker in the same color as the ink of the marker and it displays the color code.

The color codes of these markers don't seem to have any logic. The codes start with the first letter of the hue, so 'R' for red, 'Y' for yellow, and so on, but the numbers that come after that seem to be randomly chosen.

The Brushmarkers are round and they do have a little bump on the side of the cap of the brush nib, but these markers still like to roll a bit. The rest of the design looks really good, especially compared to other brands.

These markers, together with the Promarkers, are some of the most vibrant I've ever used. The colors are very saturated and don't look dull when applied to the paper. The color range isn't the best. There are only 72 colors to pick from and there aren't many dark and very light colors.

These markers from Winsor & Newton have a great ink flow. You can draw relatively quickly without the lines getting streaky at all. However, they aren't refillable. So when a marker is dry you need to buy another and throw the old one away.

The nibs of the Promarker Brush markers aren't replaceable. But you won't ever need to replace them as they aren't made to be refilled.

The Brush markers are sold in sets, but also separately. So if you run out of one marker you don't have to buy a whole set, you can just buy the one you need. A few of the sets are mentioned in the table below. You can view the rest of the sets here

Pros

  • Last long
  • Sold separately
  • Vibrant colors
  • Color codes on caps
  • Non-toxic

Cons

  • Not refillable
  • They like to roll
  • Illogical color codes
  • Not many dark colors
  • Only available in 72 colors

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2. Copic Sketch

Best and Largest Color Selection, and Refillable

The Copic Sketch markers Have a brush nib and a chisel nib and they are replaceable. The brush nib isn't too flexible which makes it great for details and for coloring larger areas. The markers are very good for blending.

These markers have a medium ink flow. They can be a little streaky if you color very quickly, but most of the time they won't be streaky. These markers don't last as long as the previous two. The Copic Sketch markers have a smaller barrel leaving less room for the ink. But these markers are refillable with the Copic Inks which can fill a Sketch marker up to 7 times.

The Copic Sketch markers are available in 358 colors: very light colors, very dark colors, anything you'd want. The color codes of these markers are very logical. You can read more about it in this article on their website.

The design of the Sketch marker is very recognizable. The ends of both caps are colored in the color of the ink, the rest is a light grey color making it look a little cheap in my opinion. Also light grey isn't the best choice for markers as any color of ink will stain it which will happen especially around the nibs. The build quality is however very good. And because of the pill shape, the Copic Sketch markers don't roll off your table.

The caps are almost the same, but they don't fit on the other side. The brush side and the chisel side are marked with an icon on the barrel and the brush side has a grey ring below the cap. Both of the caps have the color codes and the names displayed on them.

The Copic Sketch markers are one of the most expensive alcohol markers out there. They cost about 8 USD. You can buy them separately and in many sets. A few of the sets are mentioned in the table below. You can view the rest of the sets here

Pros

  • Refillable
  • Replaceable nibs
  • Excellent blending
  • Great color range
  • Many skin tones
  • Logical color codes
  • Color codes and names on caps
  • Don't roll
  • Sold separately

Cons

  • Don't hold much ink
  • Costs 8 USD per marker

You can read my full review of the Copic markers here.

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3. Winsor & Newton Promarker

Best price-to-quality ratio


The Winsor & Newton Promarkers have a fine bullet point and a chisel nib. The chisel nib is great for coloring large areas and the fine point is good for drawing the details. These markers aren't at all streaky, mostly because of the ink flow resulting in solid colors. These markers last relatively long compared to other markers, but they are not refillable.

The Promarkers are available in 189 colors, containing a fair amount of light and medium tones, but not many dark colors. And just like the Brush markers, the Promarkers have an illogical color codification.

The design of these markers is almost the same as that of the Brush markers. The cap of the bullet point curves into a point making it easy to see which side is the bullet nib and which side is the chisel nib. The cap on the bullet nib side has a little bump to stop the marker from rolling, but that doesn't always work as well. The cap of the chisel nib has the color code on it.

The Promarkers are available in sets, but they are also sold separately. A few of the sets are mentioned in the table below. You can view the rest of the sets here.

Pros

  • Last long
  • Not streaky
  • Vibrant colors
  • Good design
  • Color codes on chisel cap
  • Sold separately
  • Non-toxic

Cons

  • Nibs are not replaceable
  • Not refillable
  • Not many dark tones
  • Illogical color codes
  • They like to roll

You can read my full review of the Winsor & Newton Promarkers here.

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4. Copic Ciao

Best for Beginners and Refillable

The Copic Ciao markers Have a brush nib and a chisel nib and they are replaceable. The brush nib isn't too flexible which makes it great for details and for coloring larger areas. The markers are very good for blending.

These markers have a medium ink flow. They can be a little streaky if you color very quickly, but most of the time they won't be streaky. These markers don't last as long as the Copic Sketch. The Copic Ciao markers have a smaller barrel leaving less room for the ink. But these markers are refillable with the Copic Inks which can fill a Ciao marker up to 9 times.

The Copic Ciao markers are available in 180 colors: very light colors, very dark colors, anything you'd want. The color codes of these markers are very logical. You can read more about it in this article on their website.

The design of the Ciao marker is very recognizable. Both caps are colored in the color of the ink, the rest is a light grey color making it look a little cheap in my opinion. Also light grey isn't the best choice for markers as any color of ink will stain it which will happen especially around the nibs. The build quality is however very good. The Copic Ciao markers do like to roll around a bit as they are completely round. Both caps do have a very tiny bump to make them stop rolling, but it is not very effective.

The caps are the same on both sides. The side of the brush nib is marked with a darker grey ring and the barrel has icons with text to indicate which nib is on which side.

The Copic Ciao markers are a lot cheaper than the Sketch markers. They cost about 4 USD. And when you use them often and refill them they are probably cheaper in use than any other.

A few of the sets are mentioned in the table below. You can view the rest of the sets here.

Pros

  • Refillable
  • Replaceable nibs
  • Excellent blending
  • Great color range
  • Many skin tones
  • Logical color codes
  • Sold separately

Cons

  • Don't hold much ink
  • Will roll off your table
  • Costs 5 USD per marker

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5. Graph'it Twin Tip Alcohol-Based Marker

Darkest Black

The Graph'it alcohol markers have a fine bullet point and a chisel nib. The nibs are a bit softer than most other markers and together with the great ink flow, these markers make the process of applying the ink to the paper very smooth.

The barrel of the Graph'it markers is bigger than most other brands, meaning it can hold more ink so they last longer than most other markers before they dry out. They aren't refillable, so if one of the markers is empty you need to buy a new one.

The Graph'it markers are available in many colors, including a lot of skin tones. There are 176 colors available in total. The colors are very vibrant and the black is the darkest of all alcohol marker brands I've tried. However, there are not many dark colors available. The colors do have a very logical codification. You can read more about that in this article on their website.

These markers have a better design than the brushmarkers from Winsor & Newton as these markers are rounded triangles making them not at all able to roll easily. The caps of the Graph'it markers are the same on both sides and both have the color code on them. Sometimes it can be a bit hard to pull the caps off. The side of the bullet nib is marked with a light grey ring to quickly see which side is which. The nibs are not of these markers replaceable.

The Graph'it markers are sold in sets, but also separately. So if you run out of one marker you don't have to buy a whole set, you can just buy the one you need.

Pros

  • Not streaky
  • Last long
  • Darkest black
  • Vibrant colors
  • Many skin tones
  • Logical color codes
  • Don't roll
  • Sold separately

Cons

  • Not many dark tones
  • Not refillable
  • Caps are sometimes a bit hard to pull off

You can read my full review of the Graph'it markers here.

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Are alcohol markers better than water-based markers?

Alcohol markers offer more vibrant colors and are better for blending, while water-based markers are easier to use and are more beginner-friendly.

You can read more about the differences between these 2 types of markers in this article.

How long do alcohol markers last?

The lifespan of alcohol markers depends on the brand, how often they're used, and on what surface they're used. High-quality alcohol markers can last for several years with proper care depending on how much you use them.

Can alcohol markers be used on different surfaces?

Yes, alcohol markers can be used on a variety of surfaces, including paper, wood, plastic, and even fabric if you'd like to.

Can alcohol markers be refilled?

Yes, many alcohol marker brands offer refillable ink cartridges, which can save you money in the long run and reduce waste.

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