US Art Supply Colored Pencils
36-50 count pack
Great Blending Capabilities
Not Very Bright Colors
Not Well-varied on Color Wheel
US Art Supply Colored Pencils Review
These are another brand that is attempting to compete in the budget colored pencil market. Overall they have quite good blending although they can be fairly waxy. The color options are decent (available in 36 and 50 count sets) but they could use a bit of a boost in pigment. They have been known to wear down rather quickly which is somewhat annoying. Wax core with round wooden outside.
Visual Appeal – 3.5/5
The colors could be a bit brighter but they aren’t anything to scoff at for an offering in this price range. Many of the colors are very similar so, despite having up to 50 choices, you are somewhat limited in all of your options. Thankfully these blend extremely well for a hard lead which opens up a lot more possibilities in how you approach your artwork or project. Just keep in mind that you will likely have to do some blending to find the color you need if you plan on doing a more complex art piece.
Usability and durability – 3.5/5
As mentioned above, expect to do some blending and mixing to get all of the colors you want as well as the desired depth, but these can handle the extra abuse. The hard core and well-built exterior take to the added pressure and strokes and few people have complained about dealing with broken tips. The application is fairly waxy but since it is a harder wax it isn’t going to be particularly smooth or buttery. Overall, you can make do with these in most applications with a bit of extra effort.
Packaging and presentation – 1/5
This is really a weak point for this line. The pencils come in a cheap plastic sleeve that really provides no impact protection. In addition, it can be difficult to put all of the pencils back in the pouch and snap it closed. This is obviously a budget line so we aren’t expecting anything overly fancy, but a little extra protection during transportation and storage would have been nice. The pencils themselves are color-coordinated but beyond that have no identification on their round wooden shell.
Cost – 3/5
These come in the budget category, albeit slightly higher than several other competitors. Overall we really don’t see the value in paying a bit extra for these when the color output, selection, and durability is in line with other cheaper alternatives. In addition, it gets no points for the lackluster storage sleeve or outside appearance. The one bright spot these have in being able to blend pretty well just doesn’t make up for the other issues.
Overall Review – 3/5
A decent offering with several flaws and only a couple bright spots, particularly in their good ability to blend. They are perfectly fine for a novice or student just starting out but for someone wanting to get into a bit nicer pencil, there are better choices, even at this price range. But we do appreciate how tough they are.