With the dozens of brands and varieties of colored pencils on the market today, it can be overwhelming to know which one is best for you if you are looking for something in between professional artist and children’s grade. After testing dozens of options, here are our picks for the seven best colored pencil sets for adults. 

What are the best colored pencils for adults? 

  1. Koh-I-Noor Woodless Colored Pencils 

Our top pick is of course, the Koh-I-Noor Woodless Colored Pencils featured in our Colored Pencil Roll. We love these pencils for many reasons, but mostly because they are woodless, and have five times the amount of lead pigment in them compared with regular colored pencils. They have a pleasantly weighty feel, and you can make broad strokes and fine details with them. And with 24 richly vibrant colors to choose from, you will have a hard time tearing yourself away from doodle time. 

  1. Caran d’Ache 

The Caran d’Ache set is another one of our favorites. Every shade has been formulated using finely ground pigments chosen for their purity, intensity, and resistance to UV rays. The pencils allow for many different kinds of applications, and the cases are made from environmentally friendly California cedar. 

  1. Faber-Castell

The Faber-Castell colored pencils are geared more for professional use, and are on the more expensive side of the market. That said, with the higher price comes great quality. Each pencil is encased with California cedar with Secureall bonding to resist breakage while providing sharp, fine lines and permanent, rich color. The colors blend well and they are sturdy and smudge resistant. 

  1. Prismacolor Premier Colored Pencils 

The Prismacolor Premier Colored Pencils are another very popular option. The lead in these pencils is thick and robust, making them more durable and resistant to cracking and chipping. They offer a smooth, even color laydown, and are great for creating shading and shadows.

  1. Derwent 

The Derwent colored pencils are on the more expensive end of the spectrum, and are geared more towards professional use, but we included them in the list because of their quality. They have thick cores that combat the effects of UV light, ensuring that the longevity of your artwork won’t be an issue. 

  1. Holbein

Holbein Artists' Colored Pencils are a range of highly pigmented pencils featuring soft, oil-based cores. Ideal for blending, layering, and creating subtle color gradations, they boast a smooth, lush application and are suitable for a wide range of drawing and illustration techniques. Each amply sized, round-barreled pencil is encased in sturdy wood and accurately lacquered to match its core.

  1. Uni Posca 

Uni Posca Colored Pencils are ideal for drawings, for creating highlights, and for mixed media work. These soft-touch, oil-based colored pencils are available in 36 vivid colors that are fade-resistant, highly opaque, and blendable.

The Bottom Line

There are a number of excellent choices out there for mid-range quality colored pencils, but our choice is the Koh-I-Noor Woodless Colored Pencils. Not only do we love the versatility and vibrancy of the colors, but we also love the weight and feel of the pencils, and how you can use every single part of it and have zero waste. Added bonus is that you can store your colored pencils in our custom made canvas roll up pouch!