In addition to a great watercolor palette, the best watercolor pencils can give you more freedom to create vibrant, beautiful artwork. You can use them as pencils to add vibrant details to your watercolors, or blend them with a water brush for a muted, blended effect! They’re also convenient for those of you who love to travel with your art supplies! Before diving into the reviews, here are a few key features to know about before buying new watercolor pencils.
Soft Core: Watercolor pencils with soft cores are great for watercolor painting and drawing because they blend well and help with shading and coloring in large swatches. pencils don’t blend as well, but they’re great for detail work and outlining!
Pieces: We’ll let you know how many pencils come in each, so you can grab one with the right amount of variety for your needs! We found smaller kits that are great for travel, and larger kits with tons of options!
Case: We found great options that come with their own carrying cases – perfect for travel or art students! There are also kits that don’t come with a case, which are good for people who don’t want or need another pencil case.
Pre-Sharpened: Some watercolor pencils come pre-sharpened, while others need to be sharpened to your liking before you can use them. All of the pencil kits we reviewed come pre-sharpened, so all you have to do is open the box and create!
Sharpener Included: We will also let you know if each kit comes with a pencil sharpener. Many of them come with sharpeners built right into the carrying case! If it doesn’t come with one, you may need to purchase a sharpener separately.
Water-Soluble: Finally, we made sure each kit was made of water-soluble pigments, so you can use them however you like to create beautiful watercolors! All of the pencils we reviewed can be watered down to blend and thin out the color.
Now that you know what to look for, let’s find the best watercolor pencil set for you! We reviewed a variety of brands at different price points, so you can find one that fits your artistic needs and budget. There are options here for beginners, art students, and even professional painters! If you’re pressed for time, we totally understand! We started with our Top Pick and Budget Pick, so read those first and come back when you have more time!