Are Prismacolor Markers Alcohol-Based? Get Facts Here!

Written by Laura Walker / Fact checked by Leilani Carroll

are prismacolor markers alcohol based

Prismacolor markers are well-known and highly regarded in the creative community due to their exceptional quality and versatility. Yet, one question remains at the forefront of every artist’s mind: Are Prismacolor markers alcohol-based?

The simple answer is YES. Prismacolor markers are alcohol-based.

In this blog post, we will delve into the details of this matter, so by the end, you rest assured that these markers indeed rely on alcohol as their primary solvent. Read on!

What Are Prismacolor Markers?

Prismacolor markers are high-quality art markers known for their vibrant colors. They are perfect for artists who want to create detailed illustrations or designs, as well as hobbyists who enjoy coloring books. The markers come in different tip sizes, from fine point to chisel tip, allowing for great versatility.

Prismacolor offers two main types of markers: dual-ended art markers and illustration markers.


  • The dual-ended art markers feature a versatile design with two tips, either a fine tip and a broad chisel tip or a fine tip and a brush tip. This dual-tip configuration allows for precise detailing as well as broad strokes, making them ideal for a wide range of artistic applications.
  • On the other hand, Prismacolor’s illustration markers are specifically tailored for illustrators and designers. They feature a single tip that provides consistent line work, making them well-suited for drawing, outlining, and other artistic tasks.

Both the dual-ended art markers and illustration markers from Prismacolor are known for their high-quality ink, vibrant colors, and smooth application, providing artists with reliable tools to bring their creative visions to life.

Are Prismacolor Markers Alcohol-Based?


As mentioned above, Prismacolor markers are alcohol-based. The alcohol in the ink allows for quick drying, smooth application, and the ability to blend colors seamlessly.

This is confirmed on the official Prismacolor website. Prismacolor alcohol markers include both Prismacolor markers double-ended and illustration markers. You can get the latter individually or in full sets, while the former is only available in sets that are quite extensive. There is even a set of 200!

You can further verify that Prismacolor premier markers are alcohol-based by looking at their characteristics.

  • Smell: Prismacolor markers have the distinct, strong odor of alcohol-based markers due to their alcohol content. It has a sharp, noticeable smell resembling alcohol.
  • Quick-Drying: Prismacolor markers exhibit qualities commonly associated with alcohol-based markers, such as ink that is transparent, vibrant, and capable of delivering smooth and even color application. Moreover, the ink in Prismacolor markers possesses excellent blending properties, enabling effortless color transitions and seamless integration of hues.

However, there may be several reasons why some people think that Prismacolor markers are water-based.

  • They have a similar appearance to watercolor markers and pens, with their vivid and blendable colors.
  • They also cause minimal bleed-through on paper, which suggests that they use water-based ink.
  • Some users may have experimented with diluting them in water to create watercolor-like washes or blends.

Nevertheless, according to the official Prismacolor website, it is stated that Prismacolor markers are indeed alcohol-based.

Prismacolor Marker Composition, Why Is There A Debate?


The debate surrounding the composition of Prismacolor markers stems from the dynamic evolution of their marker line, resulting in conflicting information and differing perspectives.

Recently, Prismacolor released a new version of their markers called Scholar. These markers feature water-soluble archival ink specifically designed to meet the increasing demand for non-toxic art supplies.

Because many people associate Prismacolor with their Scholar line, the brand’s shift towards water-based ink contributes to the prevailing perception that Prismacolor markers, as a whole, are not alcohol-based.

Prismacolor Vs. Other Alcohol-Based Markers

1. Prismacolor Vs. Copic


In terms of colors, Prismacolor is known for offering vibrant results Copic markers offer a unique refillable system that allows you to replace individual colors when they run out, which not only saves money but also reduces waste. But Prismacolor marker will cost less up front, making it a good option for those on a tight budget.

2. Prismacolor Vs. Winsor & Newton


Prismacolor markers offer a wide range of colors and are known for their blendability, allowing for smooth transitions between hues. On the other hand, Winsor & Newton markers have a more limited color selection but offer high-quality ink that provides colors that will not fade over time.

3. Prismacolor Vs. Ohuhu


Prismacolors are generally considered more vibrant and high-quality, making them ideal for professional or artistic use. In contrast, Ohuhu markers are more affordable and boast a wider range of colors, which makes them perfect for someone who is just starting out and wants to try their hand at different color combinations without breaking the bank.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)


What are the best alcohol markers?

The best alcohol markers are subjective and depend on personal preference and specific needs. However, popular options among artists and designers include Prismacolor, Copic, and Winsor & Newton.

How long do Prismacolor markers last?

A Prismacolor marker can last for quite some time, but the specific lifespan will depend on several factors, including the frequency and intensity of use.

Are there Prismacolor pens?

While many retailers say they carry Prismacolor pens, the brand does not actually have any pens on offer. They only sell markers, colored pencils, graphite pencils, and pastels.

Are Prismacolor markers permanent?

Yes, Prismacolor markers are permanent. They are formulated with ink that is designed to be long-lasting and resistant to fading, ensuring the colors remain vibrant and durable over time.

What is the price range of Prismacolor markers?

The price range of Prismacolor markers can vary depending on factors such as the specific marker series, the number of markers in a set, and the retailer.

On average, a set of Prismacolor markers can range anywhere from around $10 to $200. Individual markers are around $5 each.

Are Prismacolor markers discontinued?

Some colors are discontinued, but the brand is still offering a range of markers specifically tailored to cater to the needs of artists and crafters.


As explained above, the answer to “Are Prismacolor markers alcohol-based?” is YES. Despite the changes in their marker line, including the introduction of water-based options, it is officially confirmed that Prismacolor markers are indeed alcohol-based.

Armed with this knowledge, artists, and enthusiasts can confidently expect the vivid colors, smooth application, and exceptional blending capabilities associated with alcohol-based inks when using Prismacolor markers.

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