If you’re looking for professional-quality markers, Copic is a great brand to consider. These alcohol markers are favorites among artists for their wide range of colors and excellent color saturation. Plus, they are refillable, so a set of markers can last you a lifetime.
When it comes to Copic markers, there are two main types: Ciao and Sketch. Both have their own benefits and drawbacks, so how do you choose which one is right for you?
What’s the difference between Copic Ciao Vs. Sketch markers? Copic Ciao markers are more affordable and suitable for beginners, thanks to the affordable price. However, Copic Sketch markers are available in twice as many colors and are more comfortable to use, so professional artists prefer them over Copic Ciao.
In this article, we’ll take a closer look at both markers and help you decide which option is the best for you. Keep reading to learn more!
What Are Copic Markers?
Copic markers are the most professional-grade art markers available on the market. They are used by artists all over the world due to their wide range of colors and smooth application.
The company began in Japan in the 1980s and soon gained a reputation for quality, which has only grown in the decades since. Today, Copic markers are used by artists of all levels, from beginners to professionals.
Copic markers are made with alcohol-based ink that is non-toxic and permanent. Thanks to their high quality and wide range of colors, Copic markers are ideal for any type of art project.
The markers are also designed so that the ink is refillable, and the nibs are replaceable, which means a set of markers can last you a long time.
Among Copic’s range of alcohol markers, the two that are most often used by artists are Copic Ciao and Copic Sketch markers. Many artists swear by Copic Sketch, but beginners say that Copic Ciao is much friendlier to them.
If you’re wondering what’s the difference between these two products, let’s take a look at each one.
Features of Copic Sketch
Copic Sketch markers are very popular among artists because the markers have a range of 358 colors! That color range is a dream for any artist, and it’s arguably the widest range of colors among all the brands that offer artist-grade markers.
Each marker is double-ended, with a super brush nib on one end to create a wash effect and a medium broad (angled) nib on the other, which can help you create lines and details. These nibs can create a wide range of designs and effects, so they are quite versatile.
Each Sketch marker holds 1.8 ml of alcohol-based ink, and you can also opt to buy a refill bottle with 12 ml of extra ink for colors that you favor (like black).
The marker is also designed with an oval-shaped body, which many artists say is more comfortable to use compared to the regular round or square markers.
Features of Copic Ciao
Copic Ciao is the more affordable option when it comes to all of Copic’s products, which is why it’s also favored by many beginner artists.
Copic Ciao comes in 180 colors, which is definitely more limited than the Copic Sketch, but there are still a lot of options that can satisfy beginners and amateur artists.
Copic Ciao markers are also more affordable because they hold less ink compared to Sketch markers! Each Ciao marker holds only 1.4 ml of ink, which means they will run out faster and will need to be refilled more often. Each Copic Ink bottle can refill a Ciao marker up to 9 times.
Copic Ciao markers also offer the same dual-nib design, similar to sketch markers. However, the barrel of the markers is round, which is a classic design for markers but can cause hand fatigue if you use them for a long time.
Copic Ciao Vs. Sketch
Although the ink quality is comparable, there are a few differences between Copic Ciao and Sketch markers that may help you decide which option is right for you.
The price is the thing that stands out the most when comparing Copic Ciao markers and Sketch markers. Ciao markers are significantly more affordable than Sketch markers, so many people prefer them.
However, when you compare the values that come with the price, then there are things that are worth noticing.
First, Ciao markers hold less ink (1.4ml) compared to Sketch markers (1.8ml), which means you will need to refill them more often. This makes the price difference make sense because the Ciao markers will run out faster compared to Sketch markers.
Constantly refilling the markers may also dry out the nibs faster, so you will also need to refill the nibs more frequently. So, although Ciao markers seem more affordable at first, they will actually cost more in the long run.
Ciao markers are only available in 180 colors, while Sketch markers are available in twice as many – 358 colors!
If you are a beginner, or if you are just looking for markers to work with your coloring book, then the difference in the color range may not be hugely important to you. After all, 180 colors are more than enough for most coloring enthusiasts.
However, if you are an artist, then you may find the color range of Ciao markers quite limiting. There will be colors that are only available in the Sketch line, and you will end up with a mixed collection, which may not be great for your coloring technique.
Copic Ciao markers are designed with children and beginners in mind. They have many safety features that are great for school kids, with soft caps and air holes that prevent choking. The barrels are round and small enough that they can be comfortably held by a child’s hand.
However, this design also makes Ciao markers less durable and easy to lose. First of all, the round cap means that it will roll all over the place when dropped, so the chance of losing a round cap is much higher compared to the rectangular shape of the Sketch markers.
The soft plastic will also stretch over time, which means the cap won’t be able to seal the marker tightly. A loose cap means the nib is more prone to drying out, which is why Copic Ciao nibs tend to wear out faster and need to be replaced more often compared to Sketch.
In comparison, Sketch markers are not child-friendly, but they are also designed to last longer. The cap won’t stretch out over time and can safely protect the nibs from drying out, which means they will last much longer.
Ease Of Use
Ciao markers have a round barrel that resembles a regular pen, so many colorists hold the markers similar to how they would hold a pen.
However, coloring is not the same as writing; it doesn’t demand the same precise movements and details. Instead, coloring is mainly about creating big movements and broad strokes.
Holding a marker like how you hold a pen would mean that your wrist and fingers will get tired much faster, and your colors won’t turn out as smooth or blendable. Plus, the extra pressure exerted by your hand will cause the nib to wear out faster too!
The Sketch markers are designed to help you maintain the perfect coloring technique. Because the barrels are oval, there’s a clear position where you can place your thumb and rest the marker against your palm.
Then, you can use bigger movements to control the brush, which allows you to create even washes of colors that won’t require putting too much pressure on the markers, which means your hand won’t get tired too quickly.
This design is also perfect if you have dexterity issues with your hands. For those with arthritis, the Sketch markers’ design makes it much friendlier to use for a long period of time.
When To Use Copic Ciao Vs. Sketch
Having learned about each type of marker, you may wonder whether you should choose Copic Ciao or Sketch markers for your collection.
Ciao markers are perfect for children and hobbyists. The color range is quite decent if you want to work with basic colors, plus the design of the markers is safe and friendly for children and beginner artists.
Because Ciao markers are smaller, they are also more portable, so, if you want to take a set of markers on the go, you can opt for a set of Ciao markers.
However, serious artists usually prefer Sketch markers. These markers usually last longer, which means you don’t have to refill the ink or replace the nibs as often.
The color range is much more extensive, which gives you all the options that you want for any artwork. Plus, the design of Sketch markers also means that you can color with them for longer without hand fatigue, and they are quite ideal for those with dexterity issues.