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I use many types of erasers in my daily drawing practice. These can fall into a few categories: kneaded erasers which have a variety of different consistencys ranging from dryish clay, to bread dough, to tacky chewing gum.

To compliment the soft, tacky kneaded erasers, there are the plastic erasers of all manner of sizes which are a lot more firm and produce their own character of erasing when applied to graphite. Then there are things like blenders that have a side effect of being an eraser too, albeit to a smaller extent.

All of these erasers with their varying degrees of firmness have their particular uses. So, perhaps after you have finished this page you may come to see that just having a single traditional plastic rubber to hand while you draw may not necessarily be the end to the story.


The Staedtler Mars Plastic is a fantastic eraser and should be in most artist's tool boxes. The General's Tri-Tip is also excellent although fairly pricey.


Plastic erasers like the one above leave lots of rubber debris so it's also a good idea to have a large brush to sweep that away.


Faber-Castell Grip


Kuru Toga


Hard Erasers


The Tombow eraser is pretty decent. The eraser refills can be pretty pricey so maybe test your mechnical pencil erasers before going out and buying something like the Tombow Mono eraser. Often, the eraser sticks are of excellent quality in those pencils. This is certainly the case for the Kuru Toga and the Faber-Castell 1345 Grip.

These firm stick erasers are excellent when it comes to things like creating fur. The eraser is able to slash through graphite and leave behind a clean, sharply defined line.

Tombow Mono Zero Stick eraser


Derwent stick eraser



For mass erasing all you need is a couple of thicker sticker erasers to go with the Staedtler Mars I mentioned at the top. The Derwent stick is decent enough, but again the erasers that cap many pencils can turn out to be of excellent quality as is the case with the Blackwing over there.

The electric eraser is my least favourite of all the erasers for the simple reason that I find this eraser damages the surface way too easily. All the same, it can come in handy, especially when generating texture when damage to the fibers actually benefits the appearance of rough texture.

Another downside to these erasers is their ability to push graphite into the paper tooth and cause greasy smears on the surface that become impossible to remove. The Staedtler Mars has this exact same problem... unless we utilise the soft erasers first that is.


Soft Erasers


I find that the harder eraser are mostly for removing mistakes in line-work and the softer erasers are mostly used for tweaking and adjusting what I have drawn in.


Koh-I-Noor kneadable




Chamois Leather

Kneadble erasers and blobs of blue-tack are excellent precursors to heavy handed plastic erasers. It is often a good idea to make a pass with the softer erasers before going in with the harder stuff. This will always make erasings far more successful whilst doing minimum damage to the surface as a result.


The kneadable eraser is soft and pliable and it is possible to pinch this sticky stuff into a point so that you can make small adjustments such as adding a highlight to an eyeball. Eventually, these erasers get coated in graphite and their effectiveness is reduced, so it's a good idea to frequently stretch the Blue-Tack so the surface becomes fresh once more and its ability to remove material is replenished.

The chamois leather gets a mention here because, as a mass blender, it is also a mass eraser. The effect is slight but it is noticeable enough to count this in with the other softer erasers that I find incredibly useful.


Blue Tack

This is one of my favourite erasers because it's a non destructive eraser. It makes it possible to be heavy handed with your B grades so that you can then gently lift graphite from the paper surface while maintaining a ghost of what was there before. This area can then be reworked till its appearance is that which you desire it to be.


Dishonourable Mentions

Prismacolor Kneaded  -  Absolutely useless. Horrible infact.

Black Pigmented Erasers  -  Mostly terrible so I'd receommend avoiding these.

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