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Mark It Permanent Markers by Bic

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.

Pros:

  • 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.

Cons:

  • 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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11 Responses to Mark It Permanent Markers by Bic

  1. Avatar
    Stacy May 29, 2009 at 8:53 am #

    I have the big pack. I hardly ever use them. I’m just a pen junkie 🙂 I need to make myself use them more often.

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    i {heart} papers May 29, 2009 at 9:01 am #

    I wouldn’t worry about the acid-free claim. Coming from a picture framing background, nothing is actually acid-free. The best there is is acid-neutral, which gets called acid-free in scrapbooking terms. Their statement is actually more accurate than acid-free.

  3. Avatar
    .................... May 29, 2009 at 11:56 am #

    These markers are actually what I use to color my images. I enjoy them so far. I think they do a good job of not giving harsh coloring lines.

    One example:
    http://inkblotsbytrd.blogspot.com/2009/04/hello-again.html

  4. Avatar
    ms.cheryl May 29, 2009 at 1:02 pm #

    Fine point means to me tiny. These markers do not make tiny lines, they are fat. I bought them for journalling and there is no way they work for that. Doodling maybe, not journalling. So I wasted a lot of money. ms.cheryl

  5. Avatar
    KelllyRae May 29, 2009 at 1:41 pm #

    The biggest PLUS to using these markers is Copic-like results for a fraction of the cost. The Bic markers act is a very similar manner to the Copics. I’m not going to link anything here, but all you need to do is enter ‘copic-like results with bic marker’ in either the yahoo or google search engines.

  6. Avatar
    Ashley May 29, 2009 at 3:22 pm #

    I like the Bic markers better than Sharpies, as far as coloring images. The colors are very similar. Great review.

  7. Avatar
    scrappypug May 29, 2009 at 4:36 pm #

    good review,, I have some of the pastel ones too.. and like you, i couldnt get them to show up on metal…

  8. Avatar
    Jen May 29, 2009 at 9:37 pm #

    thanks for the review. I haven’t seen these around but then maybe they aren’t widely available where I am.

    I like the colours on offer, has anyone tried them to colour rhinestones?

  9. Avatar
    jerseytjej May 30, 2009 at 7:59 am #

    I have the set of 36 which I bought for less than 20 bucks. I spent $5.00 for a Copic just to test it and I would gladly give two thumbs up to the Bic’s. They are excellent for journaling and adding color to stamped images. They also do not streak like other markers I have tried.

  10. Avatar
    Heather the Mooselover May 30, 2009 at 9:59 am #

    Wow- what great comments! I have learned so much from these comments- I wish you all could have been with me while I wrote this review!

    To answer some of the questions:
    1) I tried the Mark Its on faux jewels and holograph style stickers and the pastel shades were too light to be seen very well. I colored 1 sticker on a sheet of stickers and later had to look carefully to find it!

    2) I wasn’t crazy about these for writing. I think they are much better suited for doodling and coloring.

    Thanks for reading the review and sharing your opinions with us!

    Heather Strenzwilk
    Senior Reporter
    Craft Critique

  11. Avatar
    Jessica G. June 1, 2009 at 7:38 pm #

    Great comparison, Heather! I have some of these, but never thought to use them as described in your article. Time to stop hoarding and start using them!!