Chalkola sent us two products to review, of which I have created a YouTube video with additional and related review information (including more product demos and content!). They are a small, family owned chalk marker business. What is special about these markers is that they are supposed to be bright and vibrant colors that would replace dusty chalk and possibly other less vibrant chalk markers. They work best on non-porous surfaces such as chalkboards, plastics, glass, and whiteboards. The Chalkola Premium Wet Wipe Markers with 10 Chalk Pens and 6 Metallic Markers retails for $18.90 on Amazon and $18.95 on the Chalkola website. The Chalkola Platinum Series with 8 Jumbo Tip Markers retails for $23.90 on Amazon and $23.95 on the Chalkola website. The company CEO was nice enough to give our readers 15% off on both Amazon and their website with CODE: 15OFFSTR.
The packaging for these products are high quality. The plastic packaging on the platinum series will last a long time even with extensive taking out and putting back of the markers but it does not photograph well (oh well). However, the paper packaging on the other product, although still very nice with a glossy outside label, will probably not last as long since paper is less sturdy. I very much enjoyed the cute little doodles on the wet wipe markers box.
The markers themselves seem to be good quality as well. I did notice that the purple jumbo tip marker may be slightly defective as the tip did not lay flush with the rest of the marker. At first I thought that the leaking of the purple marker was due to the defect, but I soon found out that wasn't the case as other markers leaked as well. I am unsure as to how much impact that defect had on the usability of the marker.
One issue I had with the packaging for the jumbo tip markers is that the packaging does not mention what the product actually is or does. The words "Platinum Series" does not define what the product is. Also, what makes the product platinum anyway? Is it just that they are bigger? Both sets of markers have the same ingredients, so why aren't they labeled similarly?
Additionally, I don't feel like the wording on the 10 pack of wet wipe markers are clear. Are the premium wet wipe markers the same as chalk pens? And are the metallic markers also wet wipe markers and/or chalk pens? I think they should have made a choice to name the chalk markers either wet wipe markers OR chalk pens.
One thing I really liked about the packaging is that the back of the package has very clear instructions on how to get your pen to work properly when first using the product. I have found myself not being able to use a pen properly because many packages do not provide good instructions.
The Platinum Series set is equipped with a 15MM jumbo 3-in-1 tip, the chalk pen set is equipped with a 5.5MM bullet tip and the metallic markers in the chalk pen set are equipped with a 4.5MM tip (pictured left to right). These tips are made in Japan, but the marker itself is made in China. As you can see, the jumbo tip leaks much more than the other pens. This causes the ink to get all over the hands, workspace, and most likely your project. And, as you can imagine, the ink from the jumbo markers takes an unbelievably long time to dry (I would say at least 5-10 minutes). It lets out so much ink that it sometimes globs in one spot or drips down if the surface you are writing on is vertical. These markers are also very difficult to create anything with, partially because of the excessive ink flow, but also because they are so bulky. They are not my taste, but they may be useful for some other applications that I am unaware of.
I've mentioned a lot of negatives regarding the jumbo markers, but there are still some really amazing things about them. For one, these would be really good for borders or a background color for text. The color is relatively consistent and extremely bright and the ink flow across the nib is relatively consistent as well (see above picture), with the exception of the purple. Could this be because of the defect I found in the marker?
The Chalkola Wet Wipe Markers with 10 Chalk Pens and 6 Metallic markers have 2 additional colors that the Platinum Series does not contain. The black and brown markers are very nice and true to color. The only inconsistency I see from these is the ink flow is slightly different for the black. The nib seemed slightly thicker and the ink flow seemed to be slightly more. These markers also take a little bit of time to dry, but not near as much as the Platinum Series markers. The bullet tip is very nice and is easy to use. In my opinion, you can use these in so many more applications than the jumbo tip markers.
The 6 metallic markers that came with the 10 chalk marker set are probably my favorite markers. They are so shimmery and they flow so well. My only complaint is that the pink seemed to have less metallic "silver" in it when compared to the other colors. It is also interesting to note that these metallics look thicker than the chalk pens even though the tip on the metallic markers is supposed to be smaller. I wonder if it has something to do with my pressure inconsistency. Below is an example of some faux modern calligraphy using these metallic markers.
Markers from both sets work fairly well once you get the ink flowing for the first time, even after repeated use. I have yet to have any markers dry out or get clogged. A big plus, besides the amazing pigment colors, is that the white looks very much like chalk and it is so pure. I think it is because I have used other chalk marker brands that had relatively low ink flow and struggled to get the ink out at all, often meaning inconsistent lines and even scratching of my board. The steady ink flow in the bullet tip markers really makes these markers stand out. However, I struggled to remove the chalk markers from my chalkboard, even after trying to use the methods mentioned on the box (Windex or wet cloth). The only thing I found to remove the MAJORITY of the chalk residue was Barkeeper's Friend and a little elbow grease.
I wanted to show you a real application for these markers on a chalkboard. I chose to do a Fiesta themed dinner menu because of the bright and vibrant colors in the marker packs. The only aspect of this piece that was not done with the bullet tips markers were the rectangular confetti, as they were done with the jumbo tip markers! I had a lot of fun creating this for you and I hope that you feel inspired by my work!
I hope this demo makes you excited for Fiesta! Maybe I will make this menu for my husband in April!
Thanks for reading about the Chalkola Chalk Markers!