The Pencil Grip, Inc. asked us if we wanted to test their 24-pack of Magic Stix Washable Markers, and I said yes for two very good reasons. (But first, the government and I want you to know that is an affiliate link.) I always have very good reasons…in my own mind. If you’re an oh-my-word-what-did-you-do-to-these-brand-new-markers parent, read my two reasons for saying yes.
My Two Reasons
I’m going to talk about Magic Stix, but first, I have to gush about the company. We are big fans of The Pencil Grip, Inc. When the kids were little and first learning to write, we used their pencil grips for some of my young writers who were holding their pencils like contortionists. And you’ve already heard us rave on both blogs about their Kwik Stix and why no RV family should be without them. I mean, you need food, good, okay, but right after that you need Kwik Stix.
But I don’t want to talk about Kwik Stix right now. I want to prattle on about the Magic Stix and the second reason I agreed to squeeze more art supplies into our stuffed-to-the-axles travel trailer.
The second reason is that Magic Stix are guaranteed not to dry out with the cover off of them for seven days! Good writers don’t use exclamation points. I used one just there. That either means that my writing stinks or that this half-my-life-savings-was-spent-on-replacing-markers mom is super thrilled with this guarantee.
Do you realize what that means? An abused marker can languish under the counter until your weekly vacuuming day and still work! (Look, another exclamation point.) If you only vacuum under the couch once a month, I’m with you, but you should also know that the marker might be dried out by then–I didn’t test that theory.
Of course, when someone says, “Hey, this is guaranteed not to dry out for seven days!” I naturally say, “Wanna bet?” (I get in a lot of trouble with those two words. I lost half a donut to my son just this morning for letting those two words slip out of my mouth. Bridle your tongue, people!)
So we did the test. I didn’t have the guts to do it for a whole seven days, because what if it actually didn’t work. But we did it for four days, and the marker worked as well on day four as it did on day one.
If you want to know if it lasted the whole seven days, other reviewers tested it for the whole week. Check out their results right here. (Obviously, they’re not afraid of losing half a donut…or a marker.)
Mommy, look, I’m coloring and I’m leaving all the covers off the markers.
Now, apart from the whole I love The Pencil Grip, Inc. thing and my obsessive necessity to partially test guarantees, there are other things to love about these markers as well as a few things you marker connoisseurs must know before plopping a set into an Easter basket. (A marker connoisseur is anyone who has ever scrubbed markers off faces, pets, walls, uphostery, clothing, vehicles, carpeting, library books, or hair while crying softly into your cold coffee.)
Things Marker Connoisseurs Must Know
First, I love the little carrying case they come in.
Here’s what happened–stick with me here because there is a point. We had just learned that we were receiving these markers in the mail when a very sweet Sunday School teacher gave our kiddos a pack of new markers of another brand. The gifted markers went into our marker container and there was no more room for markers. In a travel trailer with 10 people, obtaining things goes like this:
Look at this new cool-a-ma-bob I got!
That’s totally a cool cool-a-ma-bob! Take it back. No room.
It’s great for the budget anyway.
All that to say, there was no room for the new markers in the marker container, and that’s the only place they’re allowed to go. I stressed over that for about 17 seconds every few days. But hey, cool beans–when the Magic Stix arrived, I noticed that this snazzy little case slid like butter (mmm…butter) on top of our cozy school/office supply organizers like nobody’s business. I was pleasantly pleased. (Can you be pleasantly displeased? Did I just mangle a cliché? Perhaps I need to use the sleep.)
And they’re portable! So we can go color in a church and drink church coffee! (That’s actually water, but it would have been coffee if I had let her.)
Also, the case holds the markers in a nice way so you can see all the colors at once–no hunting. And every little hand puts them away properly–I have no idea why, but if I can figure it out, I’m writing a book. Sometimes when I want to pretend I’m doing something important and thereby procrastinate activities of true value, I organize the colors according to the rainbow. Procrasto-geek alert!
Did I say colors? That is point number two. The colors in these markers are fantastic! You move beyond the normal 12 colors in marker packs to realms where the limitations of your parenting shine through.
Mommy, what color is this?
Oh that, um, yes, that is, uhhhh, well, it’s kind of…I’d call it, um…chartully.
Is that a real color?
Let’s make cookies.
Moving on to important marker connoisseur point number three, these markers are “washable.” We have successfully washed them off the following:
- vinyl flooring
- formica counters
- plexi-glass door
- wall paper
- eye glasses
- church tables (let’s keep that one a little hush-hush)
This might be an appropriate time to mention that we’re on the lookout for a nanny–must be good at scrubbing and must never sleep…ever.
While they do come off all of these things, they sometimes do not wash off as easily as our other washable brand we have scrubbed off all our worldly possessions. The thumb-spit-wipe isn’t quite as effective, although it does lighten the color considerably, depending on how quickly you can capture your painted warrior. We’ve washed it off clothes and usually it comes off. For the most part, the markers are no match for a magic eraser, but I wouldn’t let the kids play with the markers in the Easter dresses Great Grandma sewed for them–I wouldn’t even feed them in those dresses.
In these three pictures, Eliana (6) wiped the church table with water and a pink hey-this-feels-like-paper washcloth and the ink came off immediately, much to my relief. (The before picture isn’t showing up that fantabulously, so you’ll just have to trust that we can be messy. Oooooo, that’s a stretch.)
And this wonderment on the floor came off with a baby wipe. No problemo.
Fourth, the ink is quite brilliant and smooth. I was impressed with how smoothly they wrote and how bright the colors are, even after four days in the isolation ward with no cap.
Fifth, they bleed. I periodically make books for my emerging readers about my emerging readers, because, hey, what a great topic! The one in the picture was made from regular copy paper, and, as you can see, that’s not going to work.
Lone Ranger, Tonto, and “Bush” Cavendish had the same issue on notebook paper.
(Shouldn’t that picture be backwards on that bottom photo? Computers creep me out. They alter our reality. Spooky.)
Single page artwork is fine, and there was no bleeding concern with this Magic Stix/Kwik Stix combined media masterpiece on thicker writing paper.
If you’re using thinner paper, you might want to protect your table. It did wash off our table very easily which is, you know, a relief, because our faux-formica is pretty irreplaceable and I have no interest in covering my table.
Sixth, they don’t stink! I’m very happy about that. My Emily Rose even sniffed them to verify. There’s enough stink in life without our art supplies stinking things up.
Seventh, they’re non-toxic. I don’t feed my kids markers, but sometimes dinner is a little late and they help themselves if you know what I mean. Also, some of my kids wear their artwork, so I’m glad to know mega-toxins are seeping in through their toe pores.
(Judah is using Kwik Stix and Magic Stix. Currently he’s working on thumb and toe prints with Kwix Stix, to be accented and labeled with Magic Stix.)
Eighth and final, I really like that all the covers are the same color. I like my marker covers to not get mixed up. These can get mixed up and it doesn’t matter. I can invite my OCD friends over and they’re not unfriending me because my marker covers don’t match my markers! I get that, OCD friends–I totally get that.
Can I just say we’re a little Lone Ranger obsessed in this “house.” I mean, check this tippy guy out!
I already mentioned that we are fans of The Pencil Grip, Inc., and I can’t leave without saying this one more time–Kwik Stix! Read what we think about their Kwik Stix Thin Stix and Thin Stix Creativity Pack here at The Travel Bags and their Kwik Stix at The Simple Homemaker.
This company is brilliant. You know what? If they ever invent a guaranteed-never-to-be-lost-until-your-kids-can-afford-to-buy-their-own-markers set of markers, I’m buying stock.
And I was kidding about the nanny…sort of.
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