We’re big fans of big chunky markers in this house. Short Rib not so much because we don’t let him near them, but I in particular love labelling stuff. I’m a little strange like that, but if I can make things even more obvious, I’ll do it. When following Slimming World, I’ll write all sorts of syn values on packets of food and label tupperware of non-obvious foods to be sure. I once put salt in a cake thinking it was sugar, so I now have an irrational fear of doing it again.
So, when Chalkola gave me the chance to test out their range of Chalk Markers and metallic marker pens, I was all over it. Because if there’s anything better than a decent marker, it’s one you can wipe off when you’re finished. These markers boast being washable and with the ability to be wiped clean from any non-porous surface, such as glass or plastic.
I am not prepared to test whether their washable theory is correct. So let’s just say that if your child does get their chalk marker all over their t-shirt, it’ll come out in the wash. I know, I’m a bad reviewer. Boo.
So here’s the low down on the markers.
We were sent three sets to review, the normal premium chalk marker, the jumbo platinum series and a set of their metallic marker pens. I love me some metallic marker pens too. So I set about dotting around the house, marking up what I could and testing them out. I contemplated giving them to Short Rib, but ultimately didn’t. He certainly isn’t having them in the house. The weather hasn’t been great and I don’t trust him not to draw all over himself with them. So this review is mine and mine alone.
To get the bad out of the way first.
The jumbo platinum series markers. The really, really big ones. I don’t like ‘em. The colours are great and all, but I found several problems with them. First, the nib shape and size meant that unless I was doing a HUGE project (which I never would be with chalk markers) they were damn near unusable. The shape of the nib isn’t great either – a big chunky rectangle. I’d have preferred a normal rounded nib like the other two sets of pens.
Then there’s the ink flow.
Not good. By not good, I mean it is far too fast. The chalk comes out in way bigger blobs that is necessary and there’s no way you can do anything ‘vertically” with them, such as writing on a whiteboard on your fridge. They’ll immediately drip down and it’s a massive mess. Because of this, these massive markers take forever to dry.
I was surprised they dried at all. To be fair, once they did dry, the ink wasn’t going anywhere without serious scrubbing and true to its word, the marker came off without any residue. So that’s something. These are more aimed at teachers, I think rather than normal consumers. That said, I STILL think that the nib is entirely the wrong shape and the ink flow needs sorting.
The smaller version of the Chalkola markers however, are a triumph.
There are fifteen of them in our box (they are sold along with the metallic markers I mention further on in the post!). All of the colours are very vivid, the ink flow is spot on meaning I can write on anything and it won’t drip. The nib size and shape is ideal and once the ink flow was established, it didn’t stutter. The result was neat, clean lines in very vivid colours.
They dried very quickly on glass, the chalk board stickers I had and on plastic. They also wiped off just as quickly with a wet wipe. A damp cloth would also do the job if you’re past the toddler stage and don’t have many baby wipes in your house. I didn’t dare try these on our mirror because Wes would kill me, but I’m pretty confident they would work there too.
As for the metallic markers?
Colour wise, these might be the brightest I’ve seen. They’re the smallest of the bunch and the nib is a tad bigger than I had expected. I quite like fine nibs so that was disappointing for me, but I think I’m in the minority. Like the chalk markers, I had no problem with the ink flow in these. Out of the three types of pen I tried, these felt best in my hands.
Sadly, the people at Chalkola aren’t magicians and haven’t come up with a metallic chalk marker – that means that these bad boys are not for toddlers. They’re permanent. They won’t wipe off anything like the chalk markers do. Be careful with them! They will make your stuff look amazing though. As long as they’re used with care, they’re well worth the purchase!
So whilst I couldn’t recommend the really big markers, Chalkola’s normal premium chalk markers and their metallic markers are fantastic. I think the jumbo ones could also be fantastic with a bit of work on the nib and ink flow issues. The colours are ace.
Chalkola have also kindly given our readers the opportunity to win a box of their regular, premium chalk markers (the ones we love!) by entering our giveaway via the Rafflecopter below.
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