Prismacolor Col-Erase Pencils
12-24 count pack
The Eraser Actually Works!
Lacking in Color Intensity
Prismacolor Col-Erase Colored Pencils Review
Prismacolor gives us a unique offering in their set of erasable colored pencils, the Col-Erase These come with erasers and a special core material that promises to still have the renowned deep and vivid color output of other lines as well as the ability to remove said color when necessary. However, color intensity really comes into question, especially for the relatively high price. Couple this with a severe lack of color choices and you have a lot of factors to consider. They come in 12 or 24 packs with hexagonal exteriors.
Visual Appeal – 2.5/5
Despite claims otherwise, the color intensity is really lacking. The color output is nowhere near the representative outside the color the pencils advertise. You will find it much lighter and also a different tone altogether. Because of this, you will be forced to “test” out each pencil on a side piece of paper before being comfortable applying it to your actual work.
Shading is difficult with these and blending can be a challenge as well. Couple this with the fact that you can only get up to a 24 pack set, it can really limit your freedom in regards to color selection. We noticed a particularly heavy amount of oranges relative to other colors. That being said, color does go down pretty consistently and the pencils do respond pretty well to alternating pressures.
Usability and durability – 3.5/5
The erasing quality does work pretty well. There can be a little leftover wax that might stay on the paper but it isn’t something that is too big of an issue. Depending on how much you erase, you might run out of eraser before you run out of pencil, so getting a separate, larger eraser for projects might be a consideration. The hexagonal shaft assists with user control and definitely helps in focusing the eraser in on the desired areas.
We suspect that part of the reason for the extremely light color as well as the somewhat polarized color choices is because those particular colors are easier to erase or perhaps the pigments bond better to the special erasable core. This is just a guess on our part but it seems to make sense.
Packaging and Presentation – 2.5/5
The Prismacolor Col-Erase Colored Pencils come in a thin cardboard box, similar to many of the budget offerings out there. Honestly, for how much these pencils cost, it wouldn’t have hurt to include a tin or case. The pencils themselves have a color matching hexagonal exterior with the Prismacolor type and color information stamped on them. The erasers are well-fastened and there have not been many complaints with them breaking after excessive use.
It appears that the design of these is targeted more towards a casual or student atmosphere rather than someone looking for an attractive set at home. The thing cardboard case is just asking for you to remove them and not re-insert after using them.
Cost – 2/5
These pencils are a little expensive, being in the premium range. Yes, you get an eraser that actually works but for the lack of color these put out, difficulty in blending, and the small color options you need to plan on having other support colors and other types than just these for a serious work. In addition, a nicer package that does a better job of displaying and protecting would have been a nice plus. But for those dead-set on an erasable pencil, the price is something that they will be willing to pay.
Overall ranking – 2.5/5
Technically Prismacolor Col-Erase Colored Pencils do as promised in that they let you erase color. However, a lot of core features are somewhat sacrificed to reach this ideal. So-so color, little workability and blending ability, and lack of color selection makes this a hard sell for anything beyond light initial sketching in which you would follow back over with a more visually-prepared set. We could see a justification for these in a student setting where mistakes are likely to be made but beyond that, there are better options out there.