Reported by Heather Strenzwilk
On a recent shopping trip at a discount store, I discovered Mark It Permanent Markers by Bic. I was attracted to the set of 12 pastel colored fine tip permanent markers. My plans for them included: shrink plastic and coloring metallic items such as paper clips, staples and stickers. The package also said they are good for glass, plastic, photos, foils, coated paper and oily and damp surfaces. I was a bit confused by their acid-free ink claim which said the ink has “no added acid and no measurable pH” but I didn’t plan to use them in archival art.
My first experiments with the Mark It Markers were on tin foil, clear holographic stickers and gold metallic stickers. The marker ink actually went on smoothly but was so light in color that despite multiple coats of ink, it was virtually invisible on metallic surfaces. I did use the darkest color, Polynesian Purple, to color some silver staples. After 4 coats of ink the color is slightly visible but not consistent and not as deep as I wanted.
Next I tried the same pen again on some Lucky Squirrel clear PolyShrink. Because my writing looked light, I traced over my design again before shrinking it. Because colors intensify when shrunk, I was much happier with the deer color on the finished piece. But as I looked at the finished piece I wondered: are these permanent markers any better than Sharpie Markers, which I often use with shrink plastic?
I found a very similarly colored Sharpie Marker and I re-tested the same surfaces: staples, shrink plastic, matte card stock, tracing a stencil and on Sheer Heaven (a translucent art surface similar to vellum). As you can see by the photos, the results were nearly identical: both pens performed nearly the same on similar surfaces. If I had to find differences I would say that Mark It appeared slightly shinier on shrunken Polyshrink and Mark It bled a bit less when tracing a stencil. Both pens are labeled as “fine point” and drew lines of similar width.
The biggest difference between the two products is that the Mark It has a rubber grip. It was easier to hold the pen and more comfortable for writing. Mark It Markers are have their color name printed on the pen barrel. I really like having the color name so readily available and as a plus the color names (e.g. tiki hut tan or lemon bliss) provide a no-nonsense description of the color.
Bic Mark It Permanent Markers are available in sets of 12 ($15), 24 ($20) or 36 ($30). Sets of 36 are available at retail office supply stores and online.
- Mark It Permanent Markers have a comfortable rubber grip and the color name printed on the side of the pen.
- Slightly finer point than a Sharpie fine point marker.
- Sets of 12 available in 3 color coded collections: Fashion, Earthly Expressions and Paradise Pastels.
- Paradise pastels collection has several colors that are too light to see on metal and foil.
- Labeled as acid-free with the disclaimer: “no added acid; no measurable pH”.
- Widely available in the full set of 36, but difficult to find in individual sets.
Although the pastel shades were bit lighter than I wanted, Bic Mark It Markers are good basic permanent markers that perform well on a variety of surfaces including plastic, metals and Poly Shrink. Their fine point draws smooth even lines. The comfortable rubber grip pens feature no added acid ink and color name sprinted on their barrels. I’ll definitely be using this set again, but I’m not ready for the original or earth tone colored sets yet. I rate Bic Mark It Permanent Markers 8.5/10.
Have you tried Mark It Permanent Markers by Bic? Please share your thoughts with our readers!
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