Cricut Infusible Ink Pens vs Markers: Which is Better?

Written by Laura Walker / Fact checked by Leilani Carroll

cricut infusible ink pens vs-markers

If you are making a DIY project with a Cricut heating press, you will need to pick between Cricut invisible ink pens vs markers. And in order to do this, you should be aware of how they are different and how they are the same.

In this detailed blog post, we will break down just that! Specifically, we will look at the ink, sizes, shapes, colors, and prices. We will also touch on their pros and cons. Read on!

Cricut Infusible Ink Pens vs Markers – An Overview

cricut-gel-pen-vs-fine-point

Cricut Infusible ink pens and markers are a part of the Cricut infusible ink product lines made for DIY heat transfers on shirts and other materials, like bodysuits, tote bags, mugs, and coasters.

The Ink The Size The Shapes The Colors The Price
Cricut Infusible Ink Pens Infusible Ink 0.4 mm – Thin body
– Fine tip
30 From $9.99
Cricut Infusible Ink Markers Infusible Ink 1 mm – Thin body
– Round tip
– Brush tip
– Dual tips
30 From $9.99

Note: These infusible ink tools can also be referred to as Cricut sublimation markers/pens.

Let’s look into the details of each aspect now.

Cricut Infusible Ink Pens vs. Markers – A Detailed Look

1. The ink

white-pen

Cricut’s pens and markers come with the same infusible ink. This is a special type of ink that dyes the material it is being used on, essentially becoming part of the project. It is different from other types of ink usually used on fabric and crafts materials, which form an adhesive layer.

As such, your infusible ink images can remain smoothly attached forever. You will not have to worry about it peeling, flaking, wrinkling, or cracking, which are common issues with other forms of inking.

Since Cricut’s pens and markers use one ink type, you can count on both of them for long-lasting, vibrant projects.

2. The sizes

infusible-ink-pen-projects

For infusible ink pen projects, Cricut pens are available in 0.4 mm tips. You can create clean, thin lines with these. They are particularly fantastic for writing and adding details to designs. You can use them for tracing and outlining your pieces as well. But it might not be a good idea to color with them; their tips are thin and can easily be ruined.

On the other hand, infusible ink markers have 1 mm tips. These lay down thicker lines, making them wonderful for coloring. Drawing with infusible ink markers is also possible. It is not ideal to use them for intricate detailing, though. They might smudge or smear.

3. The shapes

cricut-sublimation-markers

The pens and markers from Cricut come in the same body shape. So, when you are holding them, there will be no difference in terms of the grip and feel.

However, compared to the pens, the markers do come in different tip shapes: brush tips and dual tips. These offer more flexibility. You can use them for freehand abstract creations, and they are great for hand lettering too.

The infusion ink pens, meanwhile, have fine tips only.

Note: The brush and dual tip markers are called “Freehand Markers” on Cricut’s website. They are not compatible with the Cricut Maker and Explore machines.

4. The colors

You can get infusible pens and markers in 30 colors. They share over a dozen options, including neons. But the brush tip and dual tip markers have additional colors that the pens do not have. On the brand’s website, these are called “Tropicals.”

5. The prices

on-fabric

Infusible pens and markers with the same color options share the same price tags. For example, a set of 3 is $9.99 for 0.4 mm pens and 1.0 mm markers.

However, the price can vary depending on the promotional programs being applied. Right now, for instance, a set of black, red, and green Cricut maker infusible ink markers is discounted to $5.00, while the same set of pens in black is $9.99.

6. Pros & cons

Cricut Infusible Ink Pens

on-any-shirt

Pros
  • Feature vibrant, long-lasting infusible ink
  • Can produce clean, thin lines
  • Available in 30 colors

Cons
  • Not suitable for coloring and filling up large designs

Cricut Infusible Ink Markers

drawing-with-infusible-ink-markers

Pros
  • Feature vibrant, long-lasting infusible ink
  • Can produce bold, thick lines
  • Available in 30 colors

Cons
  • Not suitable for adding details to small designs

Other comparisons:

How to Color with Cricut Infusible Ink Pens and Markers

infusible-ink-pens-on-shirts

What to Prepare

use-infusible-ink-pens-with-mug-press

  • Cricut Infusible pens and markers
  • A compatible Cricut blank
  • Laser copy paper
  • A Cricut heating tool

Depends on where you want to ink your design. You can use infusible ink pens with Mug Press, for example.

What to Do:

Step 1. Set up your Cricut blank and place a sheet of laser copy paper into it.

Step 2. Create your design in the Design Space and make sure you mirror and size it.

Note: Alternatively, you can draw your design by hand before loading it into your blank.

Step 3. Put your pens and markers into Clamp A and click “GO.”

Step 4. Once you get your design, consider coloring it in with the same pens and markers.

Step 5. Place your apparel on the mat with a cardstock inside the clothing. Clean your apparel with a lint-roll and set a Cricut butcher paper substitute atop.

Step 6. Preheat the heating tool.

Note: Refer to the Cricut Heat Guide for details on the time and temperature settings.

Step 7. Once there are no wrinkles and heat left on the clothes, remove the butcher paper.

Step 8. Set your design top-down on the surface and tape it down using heat resistant tape.

Step 9. Place the butcher paper on top again. Press the design on the apparel using heat.

Step 10. Let the surface cool completely before removing the tape, butcher paper, and machine.

And you are done! Carry this process out on any shirt or other materials, as noted in the intro.

Here is an example of infusible ink pens on shirts to inspire you.

Where to Buy

You can purchase both Cricut pens and markers from the brand’s website. They list direct links to all their online stores in North America, Latin America, Europe, Middle East, Africa, Asia Pacific, and Oceania.

Which is Better: Cricut Infusible Ink Pens vs Markers?

The better option is the one that can help you bring your ideas to life. If the design that you have in mind includes a lot of intricate details and patterns, you might want to go with Cricut pens. But if your design is big and has lots of space to fill in with colors, markers will be better.

Markers will also be preferable if you want to freehand a design with brush tips or dual tips. Keep in mind that Cricut pens are not available in these tip shapes.

Frequently Asked Questions

black

What kind of paper do you use for infusible ink pens and markers? 

You should use laser copy paper. This is because, unlike regular copy paper, laser copy paper can withstand high heat and is bleed-proof. As a result, you can transfer your design safely and cleanly.

Which machines can you use with infusible ink pens and markers? 

You can use:

  • The Cricut Joy
  • The Cricut Maker
  • The Cricut Explore
  • The Cricut Autopress
  • The Cricut EasyPress 3
  • The Cricut EasyPress 2
  • The Cricut EasyPress
  • The Cricut EasyPress Mini
  • The Cricut Hat Press
  • The Cricut Mug Press

Cricut gel pen vs fine point. Are they different from infusible pens and markers?

Besides Cricut infusible ink pens and markers, the brand has normal gel pens (the typical black, white pens, etc), glitter gel pens, and metallic gel pens. Some of these are available in fine-point tips, unlike the infusible ink markers. These have a much wider color assortment as well.

Conclusion

Now that you know the essentials to Cricut infusible ink pens vs markers, you can decide which between the two to take home. If your budget allows, however, we recommend getting both. Since it is helpful to have tools for both thin and thick lines.

If you have any other thoughts to share or questions to ask about this topic, leave them in the comments down below. Do not be shy! We love it when we get insights from our readers.

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