Acrylic paint pens are some of the most useful tools for an artist. Painters love them for fine details and consistency that brushwork can’t provide. Over recent years, paint pens have become more and more popular, and more and more brands have been creating their own models. Here are the five best acrylic pens on the market right now.
Quick Summary: Best Acrylic Paint Pens
|Best Acrylic Paint Pens||Where to Find|
|Posca Acrylic Paint Pens||View on Amazon|
|Sharpie Paint Markers||View on Amazon|
|Tooli Art Paint Pens||View on Amazon|
|Peebeo Paint Markers||View on Amazon|
|Arteza Paint Markers||View on Amazon|
1. Posca Paint Pens
- Renowned in art industry
- Smooth paint outflow
- Matte, opaque finish
- Easily customizable
- Difficult to find in the U.S.
- Harsh on untreated paper
- Limited blending capabilities
These paint pens are some of the best acrylic paint pens on the market. Even new artists may already be familiar with the Posca name. The Japanese brand has gained global popularity for its excellent quality paint markers. However, because Posca is a foreign brand, its products can be difficult to find abroad, and their prices are usually higher than similar products. The extra bucks are worth the investment, though. The pens’ unique mixing ball technology ensures smooth paint flow without air bubbles or inconsistency. Their colors are mostly deep pastels, which are great for both linework and streakless fillwork. You can easily customize each pen to fit your needs thanks to reversible and replaceable tips that come in all shapes and sizes.
Sharpie Paint Marker
- Affordable and easy to find
- Great on paper and other paints
- Many types of tips
- Poor on coarse materials like wood
- Limited color selection
- No large sets
Few people know that this famous pen company also sells acrylic paint pens. Sharpie’s paint pens may surprise you with their high-quality paints and variable tips. Like their typical markers, fine, medium, and bold tips are all available, as well as extra fine and extra bold. With this level of control, you’ll be able to flesh out a detailed piece with just these products. While the color catalog isn’t quite as robust as other brands, they still have a strong selection of basics and beyond. Plus, you’ll easily be able to find these pens at any art store, so you’ll never be more than a short trip away from replacements and additions.
Tooli-Art Paint Pens
- Most affordable
- Many types of color palettes
- Opaque and streakless
- Shorter lifespan
- Cheaper build
- Heavy on paper
Tooli-Art Acrylic paint Pens are the best option for artists on a budget who don’t want to sacrifice much quality. These pens are able to provide complete, streakless coverage in just a few coats, which is impressive for a value brand. The paint flows out smoothly, almost too smooth for paper as it does seep through a bit. For pieces on canvas, cardboard, or any other sturdy material, this won’t be a problem. Tooli-Art’s sets feature all types of colors, from vibrant primary, muted pastels, strong neutrals, and even metallics. It’s rare to find a deal this good for acrylic pens.
Pebeo Paint Marker
- True acrylic feel
- Extra tips included in caps
- Performs well on wood and coarse surfaces
- Difficult to find
- Higher price point
Acrylic paint pens are not the typical choice for painting on coarse materials like untreated wood. Acrylics usually need a lot of coats to show up on these surfaces and their tips can be damaged. Pebeo paint pens aren’t like others, though. These pens perform surprisingly well on rough surfaces like wood and rocks. That makes these a great choice to make some unique, earthy DIY decor. Of course, these pens still perform well on smoother surfaces, where paint truly flows like from a brush. These pens are great for convenience. Each cap has a spot for replacement tips, so you don’t have to stop if you want to change your level of detail.
Arteza Paint Markers
- Affordable and new on the market
- Replacement tips included
- Very large color sets
- Often streaky
- Difficult to activate
- Poor opacity for many colors
Arteza recently added their new competitor to the acrylic paint pen market. These pens came out last year and have already become a mainstay for many acrylic users. Their color selection is massive, with their largest set including forty colors. Better yet, they are one of the more affordable options now, rivaling even Tooli-Art. While their lighter colors may take a few layers to get solid, the ultimate result is always vibrant and exciting. Another advantage of Arteza’s sets are the included replacement tips, which are abundant. You don’t have to be conservative with your brush strokes knowing you can easily replace the tip when it gets worn.
What to Consider When Buying Acrylic Paint Pens
As you can see there are many different factors to take into account when finding the best paint pens. All of these pens have their specific advantages, but its important to know what those advantages are to decide what is best for your needs. The obvious first thing to look for is paint and marker quality. While the paint is fairly consistent across brands, there are slight differences that will impact your experience. For example, some paints include solvent, which can make paint flow smoother but can introduce an unwanted odor and react with some surfaces. That said, you should tailor your purchases to serve your typical medium.
Some paint pens do great on canvas, but not on wood. Marker quality will typically be more important, as the type of marker construction can affect the consistency of paint flow. You should also keep in mind customizability. Some paint pens have many types of tips which can be replaced or reversed. If you work on many levels of detail, this will be especially important. Another important factor to consider is affordability. Usually cheaper prices come at the expense of quality or lifespan, but as newer models come out, that is starting to change.
What Should You Use Acrylic Paint Pens For?
Acrylic paint pens, in general, are a niche tool to use, but are especially useful in some situations. Since acrylics are water-based, they are great for blending and for when you need something removable. Acrylics are most often used on even, non-absorbent materials like canvas. They’re more difficult to use on coarse surfaces, especially when using a pen with fragile tips. A Paint pen provides a greater level of control than a brush and are perfect for smooth and consistent lines. Consequently, pens are perfect for linework. They can also be used to color, but may take more time to fill in large areas.
Where to Buy Acrylic Paint Pens
Acrylic paint pens, while niche, are still a pretty standard painting tool these days. You’ll be able to find them in most arts and crafts stores like Michaels and Blick. Some common brands can even be found in convenience stores. No matter where you are, though, in-person selections will always be limited. Your best bet to get the exact product you want is to shop online.
Most of the brands will be found on large marketplaces like Amazon. To support the brands directly, though, you could buy directly from their websites, although you may have to pay more for shipping. Even so, this is the best way to make sure your favorite companies can keep making new products.
There are many options for best acrylic paint pens. Each has its own pros and cons that will be ideal or not ideal for your own situation.