Different kinds of pencil erasers have different abilities to erase pencil marks, and it is really nice and helpful to have a few types of erasers in your studio or on your drawing table.
So let’s have a look at the best erasers you should get!
My Picks: Best Erasers for Drawing and Sketching in 2023
I have several of all the other types of erasers, and I wouldn’t get rid of any of them and use them all regularly for various tasks, situations and media, but this cool little tool is the best all-arounder, and addictively effective.
At the end of this article, in the Bonus section, we will talk a little about the electric eraser, and try to determine if it is just another slick gadget that should be immediately erased from your shopping list, or a genuinely clever and useful art tool. Electrifying stuff, if I do say so myself.
But now, let’s get into our buyer’s guide for the best erasers available today!
Best Kneaded Erasers
Best Eraser for Soft Pencil, Charcoal and Pastel
FaberCastell Kneaded Eraser is probably the most popular choice among artists, and a fantastic soft eraser. This four pack is especially nice because each eraser stays soft and new in its own storage case, and the consistency is wonderful – highly moldable and absorbent and very easy to use.
An efective and nicely workable eraser, here in a great value 12 pack – perfect for the studio or the scattered artist! – the Prismacolor is great for not just erasing, but for extended drawing techniques like lightening dark areas, gently streaking or texturing
My favorite kneaded eraser, with nice firm consistency and real effectiveness, and also a great eraser for special effects like textures, shades and blends. I don’t know why I love the June Gold so much, but it always works for me, is cheap and long lasting, and feels great in my hand.
Best Gum / Art Gum Erasers
Best Eraser for Graphite Pencils, Large Areas, Soft Paper
A long lasting basic art gum eraser that works well and is made in the United States – a favorite of artists for many years, known for its balance of effectiveness and gentleness, as well as its ideal shape.
The choice of lots of commercial and fine artists, a very effective and versatile art gum eraser that is easy to hold and easy to use. A great choice for soft paper and soft graphite, as well as lots of techniques around shading, blending and texturing.
My favorite gum eraser, the medium sized Sax is the ideal size and shape, erases cleanly and completely – especially for a gum eraser – and seems to last longer than others. I love it for extended smudging / shading techniques as well, and use mine all the time.
Best Rubber Erasers
Best Eraser for Writing, Erasing Normal Graphite Lead, Cheapest
The standard and most widely used eraser in its perfect form – the ideal size and shape, latex-free, non-smudging, long lasting and, of course, pink. A classic from Paper Mate, and a great deal in the 12 pack, this is the artists’ favorite, and mine as well.
A triangular black rubber eraser from Prismacolor, long lasting and in a clever and genuinely useful shape. Whether it erases better than a standard pink rubber eraser is debatable, but it is great for precision work and feels right in the hand.
Best Eraser for Colored Pencils
With a more coarse and harder surface than normal rubber erasers, the Tombow MONO is a little rougher on paper, and you need to use it carefully, but it is the best for ink and colored pencils. Not only my favorite, but also the first choice of so many other artists and crafters.
Best Vinyl / Plastic Erasers
Best Eraser for, well, Everything! Deep, clean and precise erasing, but tough on paper
Vinyl or plastic erasers can damage paper, especially if used too strongly, but the Lion translucent seems more gentle and safe, and is known for very deep and precise erasing. My favorite, and a popular choice among technical artists and drafters.
Probably the most popular vinyl eraser on the market today, and certainly the highest rated and most loved, the Pentel Hi-Polymer erases very easily and deeply, and will stay soft and usable for its whole life.
White, Latex-free, Age-resistant, Minimal Crumbling
If the Lion is the choice of draftspeople, architects and other technical artists, and the Pentel is the people’s choice, the Staedtler Mars is the choice of most artists, and is known for its long life, clean and deep erasing, and its perfect design for both large areas and real precision work.
A plastic eraser in a cool retractable sleeve, this is a very high precision eraser that is super easy to use and fantastic to have on hand – especially in this two-pack which includes both round and square tip varieties.
Different Types of Erasers for Drawing, Sketching and Artists
One major revelation about erasers is that they are not, in fact, just for fixing mistakes.
The best art erasers are used for erasing mistakes and problems, of course, but they also are used for shaping areas, lightening shades and colors, adding texture, highlight and shadow, creating detail and more.
There are several different types of erasers, and each has its own uses and benefits, as well as its own issues:
Not the most well known, this wonderful little friend still may be the eraser most associated with fine artists.
Kneadable and shapeable, it can be made into a very fine point and used for very exact and precise erasing, and doesn’t leave behind residue. Even the best kneaded erasers, however, are not ideal for, or used for, erasing large areas.
A soft and gummy eraser that won’t damage even most soft papers, the gummy eraser, or artgum eraser, is very effective, but leaves lots of residue (which can simply be brushed off). Great for larger surfaces, the gum eraser is not as good as a kneaded eraser for fine detail or small areas.
The classic pink eraser is the most familiar type of eraser. Made either from natural rubber latex, or latex-free.
Most often called “pink erasers”, the rubber erasers are harder and firmer than the two types above, and are very effective with both large areas and some precision work, but can be a little more damaging to paper, especially if you are a bit too enthusiastic in your erasing.
The hardest eraser on our list, the vinyl eraser (also called a plastic eraser) can also be the most powerful and effective, and can even erase some inks from paper.
They remove marks (pencil marks, colored pencil marks, light pencil marks, graphite pencil marks) completely and leave no mess, and are often used by draftspeople, technical artists and other precision artists. The vinyl eraser can, though, easily damage soft paper, and even with normal paper should be used carefully.
An eraser that is, you guessed it, electric. Brilliant invention or worthless fad just waiting to sink to the bottom of your junk drawer? We’ll talk more about this later, in the Bonus section at the end of the article, but spoiler alert – electric erasers rock!
I hope my guide on the best eraser for drawing and sketching has helped you pick the best one for your needs, and you will have a lot of fun with your creative projects!
Other articles in the drawing pencils, pens, and markers series:
- Best Watercolor Pencils
- Best Mechanical Pencil for Drawing
- Best Drawing and Sketching Pencils
- Best Colored Pencils for Artists
- Best Pencil Sharpener for Colored Pencils
- Best Drawing Pens
- Best Copic Alternatives
- Best Markers for Coloring Adult Coloring Books
Hi, I am Iva (rhymes with “viva”). I am a full-time self-taught artist behind Art Side of Life® and a Top Teacher on Skillshare. I have 15 years of experience in the creative field as a concept designer, illustrator, art director, and now freelance artist, content creator, and art instructor. My goal is to help you get your creative groove on with Procreate and make awesome art through practical classes, tutorials, Procreate brushes, and guides on art tools, supplies and resources. About me »
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