How to Refill Prismacolor Markers: Careful, Simple & Neat

Written by Laura Walker / Fact checked by Leilani Carroll

how to refill prismacolor markers

Prismacolor is a classic brand of markers that has been an avenue for individuals to untether their artistic capabilities since the 80s. Their alcohol based markers offer a wide range of vibrant colors and have double-ended tips.

On top of that, Prismacolor markers are more affordable than Copic markers– a real bargain! However, there is always a trade-off to nearly everything. Prismacolor markers are not designed to be refillable.

However, we can revive the markers with a simple method using rubbing alcohol. Check out how to refill Prismacolor markers easily. Follow through!

Ways to Refill Prismacolor Markers


Prismacolor pens are excellent markers for drawing and blending, don’t dispose of them yet! Instead, follow the detailed steps below to refill your markers.

But first, here are what you need to prepare:

  • A facemask
  • Thick disposable cloth
  • Rubbing or denatured alcohol (any amount)
  • Small cup or bowl
  • Scratch paper
  • Dropper or oral syringe

Step #1: Buy rubbing or denatured alcohol.


You can fix dried out Prismacolor marker with denatured or rubbing alcohol!

Prismacolor alcohol markers are not exactly advertised to be refillable pens. But with a bottle of rubbing or denatured alcohol, you may be able to bring your marker back to life.

Step #2: Find an open space and wear your mask

Bring your items outside for refilling, and wear your mask to avoid inhaling the alcohol scent. Besides, you will not want your kids running around you when refilling the markers.

Step #3: Prepare the alcohol

Pour your rubbing or denatured alcohol into a small bowl or cup– preferably one where your dropper or oral syringe can easily reach and absorb the liquid substance. Dip your dropper or oral syringe in the rubbing alcohol.

If you use a dropper, pinch the end to absorb the liquid. But if you use an oral syringe, hold the tube and pull the end to get a manageable amount of alcohol.

You’ll only need a few drops of alcohol to revive your Prismacolor markers! Lastly, gently tap the body of the dropper or oral syringe to allow air bubbles to rise.

Step#4: Add alcohol to the marker.


Take off the marker cap and apply alcohol directly on the nib. Add more drops of alcohol if needed and place the marker cap back.

Whether you are trying to refill Prismacolor fine line marker or other types of Prismacolor markers, dropping alcohol onto the tips would work because marker nibs are porous.

An alternative method for step #4:

For the alternative method, you may need to add these:

  • Precision knife
  • Gaffer tape
  • Small dish

If you think the method above is not enough to revive your alcohol based markers, we have an alternative way for you! Follow these:

  • Locate the line where the marker barrel and nib holder are glued together. This is usually found near the end of the marker.
  • Using the precision knife you previously prepared, carefully slice the marker with the line as your basis– emphasis on the word “carefully” since you might get cut if you aren’t cautious!
  • Gently separate the nib holder and marker barrel with your hands. This step might get messy as clumped-up ink might spatter.
  • Remove the ink reservoir inside the marker barrel and place it on a small dish.
  • With the dropper or oral syringe, apply alcohol directly onto the ink reservoir. Add a few more drops every time you notice that the reservoir has absorbed the liquid substance to avoid overfilling it.
  • Put the ink reservoir back into the barrel and close it with the nib holder. To hold them in place, wrap them with gaffer tape– using this won’t leave a sticky residue when you’d have to remove it again.

Step #5: Test it out!


To be sure whether the amount of alcohol you added on the marker is enough, you’ll have to test it out! On a piece of scratch paper, write with the refilled marker and try to remember the look of the ink and feeling of using the marker back when it was still working well.

If you think that the marker nib feels too stiff to use, or the ink it produces is a little drier than it used to be, repeat step 4 and you’re good to go!

Frequently Asked Questions


Are Prismacolor markers alcohol based?

Yes, Prismacolor markers have dyed, alcohol based, permanent ink that produces vibrant colors. But the brand also has water based markers for those who prefer it. These are called Prismacolor scholar brush markers.

Are there Prismacolor marker refills?

Unlike Copic markers, there are no Prismacolor refill products available for Prismacolor alcohol markers because these pens are manufactured to be disposable.

But you may use the guide above to cleverly refill your Prismacolor markers!


In essence, Prismacolor markers are not marketed as refillable pens. But due to humanity’s resourcefulness, there are now guides on how to refill Prismacolor markers.

The next time you contemplate throwing your dried-out markers, determine the type of marker first and see if there are ways you can reuse it.

Doing so will not only bring back your dying markers but also help revive our dying environment– like what was said at the beginning of this article, what a bargain!

3.7/5 - (3 votes)

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