The best drywipe pens on test

We regularly test a wide range of drywipe marker pens to make sure we recommend the right pen for our whiteboard surfaces.

What makes a drywipe marker dry erasable?

The ink in drywipe or dry erase markers is typically made up of a mixture of alcohol, solvents, resin and pigments. The resin and pigments are soluble so dissolve in the alcohol and other chemicals in the marker, when applied to a dry erase surface the and exposed to air the alcohol evaporates leaving the pigment to solidify on the whiteboard where it can be wiped away.

These markers are only drywipe on a suitable dry erase surface, if used on a surface that absorbs liquids they will act as any normal ink or permanent marker would.

What makes a good drywipe marker?

In our opinion a good drywipe pen should do the following:

  • Writes well and fits the hand – as with all pens the ability to write well often comes down the size and shape of the pen, too chunky or too skinny and they can be hard to hold.
  • Good amount of pigment in the ink – levels of pigment can vary across brands of marker; a very heavy ink is much harder to clean and is more likely to stain.
  • Solvent levels – too much solvent can make the pens smell strongly when in use, too little and they don’t give chance for the pigment to dissolve in the pen and can leave a light streaky line of ink when writing.
  • Easy to clean – how well marker ink cleans is affected by the amount of pigment and solvent levels in the pen but also the way in which the whiteboard is cleaned (see our previous article for more information on cleaning)

What we use

Our recommended drywipe marker pens are the Edding 360 (medium tip) and 361 (fine tip) as we find they perform well on our whiteboard surfaces meet the points mentioned above.

We do however regularly test other brands to make sure we are recommending the right product. In our most recent tests we concluded that Edding pens remain our favoured choice but there are some good alternatives.

Testing

In our testing we look at how each brand of pens and the colours they supply perform on our drywipe surfaces. This includes our ThinkingWall and custom printed whiteboards.

We look at how the ink cleans with a dry cloth first as the pens are designed to be dry erasable. Cleaning sprays can be used but our first test would be a dry cloth over different time periods – 1 hour, 1 week and 1 month.

We also look at the aesthetics of the pen itself and how the ink looks on the whiteboard surface.

Images of each stage of our testing are below:

drywipe pen test

pen test 1 hour

pen test 1 week

test 1 month

Test results

Ink 
Pen
Cleaning
Smell
Conclusion
Edding
Good colour, not too heavy
Simple, easy to write
Easy to clean
Reasonable
We recommend
Nobo
Good colour, not too heavy
Awkward shape for writing
Easy to clean
Reasonable
Good but pen shape could be better
Foray
Good colour, a little heavy
Nice shape for writing
Difficult to clean, leaves ink behind
Strong
Dark heavy ink that is difficult to clean
Bic
Very light colour
A little chunky
Cleans well
Strong
Good but perhaps a little too light
Staedtler
Good colour, a little light
Simple, easy to write
Easy to clean
Strong
Good alternative to Edding
QConnect
Light colour
Nib too soft, untidy writing
Leaves a greasy residue
Reasonable
Too light & leaves residue
Five Star
Very heavy ink
Nib too soft, untidy writing
Leaves a greasy residue
Reasonable
Too dark and leaves residue
Niceday
Heavy ink
Bullet nib too large
Difficult to clean, leaves ink residue
Strong
Leaves very noticeable ink residue, harder to clean the longer ink is left
Expo
Heavy ink
Chisel tip too hard
Leaves ink residue
Reasonable
Too dark and leaves residue, chisel tip a little awkward to write with

Recommendations

Following our tests we would recommend Edding as the best drywipe marker pens for our whiteboard surfaces, they are a good combination of ink colour, ease of cleaning and how the pen handles. Staedtler would be a good alternative as they clean well although we found the ink to be a little light. The Nobo pens also performed well with good ink colour and easy to clean however we found the pen shape to be a awkward to write with.

The ones we would choose to avoid were the Foray, Niceday and Expo pens all had very heavy dark ink which was difficult to clean particularly the blue and red inks.

All pens perform differently and it isn’t the end of the world if ink leaves marks or residue, we can advise on the best way to clean boards and more information can be found in our cleaning article here.

 

 

Logovisual have previously supplied whiteboard panels for our London office, so when we needed whiteboards for a room at our head office we got in touch. The end result looks good – many thanks.

ADRIAN SHAH-CUNDY, VOLKER WESSELLS

All looks fantastic thank you!!
The guys were a pleasure to meet and it was all so hassle free.

CHARLOTTE WALTERS, TUNGSTEN NETWORK

Commissioned Logovisual to design and install a folding wall in one of our technology rooms. Both our company and the NHS Trust were absolutely delighted with the installation a first for all.

PETER SALT, IMMERSIVE

Clear and prompt communication throughout and a very smooth installation process. Nothing was too hard. Highly recommended!

TRACEY COVE, STEVENS & COVE

Excellent, high quality product, purchased after wise advice and installed quickly by friendly installers. Perfect product for our meeting room needs.

MIA ELLIOTT, DIOCESE OF GUILDFORD

The board looks great! And I’d like to say your installers were absolutely fantastic, so friendly, organised and cleaned up.

JESS MARTIN, VAYNERMEDIA

Logovisual really understood our brief and made some great suggestions to make our designs come to life. They helped us bring a child’s game from a small tin to a life size piece of experiential, for us to take in to store at John Lewis. Everyone loved it. Thank you guys.

TAMARA SPURWAY, WILD & WOLF

As a product, they really provide a varied functionality to aid in our brainstorming and project works. These mobile whiteboards have really been an excellent investment and are immensely popular with our staff.

SEBASTIAN FRANCIS-JONES, C SPACE

The whole process from start to finish was excellent and the final product was second to none. Highly recommend Logovisual and the team and will be using them again very soon for the next project.

LYNNE BRODA, OXFORD CARTOGRAPHERS

The install was fab the guys were excellent and we all love the wall, so much in fact we are thinking of future projects including them. Once again can’t thank you enough for a great thorough service.

ZOE HARRIS, CBRE GLOBAL INVESTORS

Logovisual had as I believed to be the simplest and hassle free job on the project, install of white boards. They were in and out within 3 hours, a job well done!

THE PROJECT TEAM, OVERBURY PLC

The product itself is superbly built and easy to manoeuvre around with the attached wheels. From the office team’s communication before our event to the delivery team’s installation and pickup I found everyone to be really helpful and very professional going out of their way to meet our deadlines. I would certainly recommend logovisual.

SHAUN O’HARA, SAATCHI & SAATCHI WELLNESS

We were looking for a new “canvas” to share information and encourage joint thinking. The Thinking Wall turned out to be the perfect solution. There’s room to be expansive and for things to have real impact. The service we received right from our first enquiry, to installation (very fast, very painless) has been excellent.

STEPHEN CROWE, SCOTTISH FUNDING COUNCIL

We were pleased with the high level of customer service, our order was dealt with quickly and efficiently and we are thrilled with the finished product. The custom whiteboards that are exactly as we had envisaged them.

STEVE CROSTHWAITE, HOTSPUR PRIMARY SCHOOL

Just wanted to thank you again for your help, had a small amount of feedback from our client: Whiteboards are superb. Even better than expected!

LEE, IDEA UK DESIGN & MARKETING