If you work at a desk, a dependable eraser is essential in your arsenal of stationery implements. There are various brands and types of erasers such as plastic, rubber, and kneaded erasers, some of which are better suited to erase pencil or pen.
In this article, we’re going to help you decide which eraser you need and recommend you the 10 best erasers on the online marketplace. There’s a lot to choose from, so be prepared to erase your preconceptions about what an eraser can do!
How To Choose an Eraser – Buying Guide
If you’re in the market for a new eraser, what qualities should you be looking out for? There are several important factors, such as eraser material, design, grip, and, of course, price. The following is a thorough explanation of each of these factors.
The Material Depends on Application
What are you using this eraser for? Are you erasing pen, pencil, or something else? There are roughly four categories of erasers, and the answer to the aforementioned questions will guide you to the right choice. Here they are.
The Trendy and Durable Vinyl Eraser
Also known as plastic erasers, these erasers are made from vinyl chloride and give a pretty serious erase. Vinyl erasers are able to erase pencil and ink with ease. The leftover residue from the eraser tends to bunch together, leaving you with little mess to clean up.
Vinyl erasers are hard and rigid, and can therefore tear the paper without much force. They also shrink at an alarming rate. So, use them with caution. If you’re allergic to rubber, vinyl is a great option.
The Familiar Rubber Eraser
When you think of an eraser, you probably envision the pink and rubbery eraser shown above. It’s ubiquitous in schools all around the United States and can come in a variety of colors other than pink. Rubber erasers were the first type of eraser invented and are still reliably used to this day.
The latex harvested from the rubber tree is used to make rubber erasers. Synthetic alternatives exist, though they are cheaper and not as effective as natural rubber.
They’re sturdy things, though, and don’t run out too fast. They do not erase ink and, unless you exert some force, aren’t even that amazing when it comes to pencil. But be careful not to apply too much pressure on a rubber eraser, as they’re known to break in half. They’re also weak to ultraviolet rays (ever found a rubber eraser that’s hardened to a rock and erases as well as one, too?), so get something you can use up quickly.
Gum erasers are very soft and are normally used to erase large areas of paper. They’re actually made of rubber, but are much more pliable. Because their soft composition won’t tear up the paper as much as a vinyl or traditional rubber eraser would, they’re often used by artists.
Additionally, their rectangular shape allows you to choose between a small (the corner) and large (the face!) surface area when you’re erasing. For artists, the ability to go small allows for a more precise erase. That means a better drawing or picture.
Kneaded erasers are almost primarily used by artists, and they don’t just erase. Kneaded erasers can also function as a type of highlighter.
Kneaded erasers are malleable and can be shaped, or kneaded, into whatever form works best for the artist. They work by absorption, which is when the eraser actually pulls the graphite from the paper and essentially absorbs it. It leaves no shavings, but the eraser will eventually darken from all the graphite.
Most kneaded erasers can adsorb chalk, pastels, charcoal, and colored pencils. Be careful not to leave them in hot environments for too long, as they’re likely to lose their shape and become unusable.
Get an Eraser That Won’t Make You Roll up Your Sleeves and Scrub
If your eraser doesn’t erase well, you’ll spend more time erasing and less time writing. You’ll start pulling out your hair and wringing your hands. So if you want to be the most efficient eraser in the world, get something that’ll erase without you grinding it into the paper. This isn’t something you’ll figure out by just staring at the eraser, though, so read through the customer reviews.
Stiff Erasers Are Hard To Break
Let’s face it. Erasers break. It happens. We all remember a time in school when we were bent over our desks, trying to get that last smudge off the paper with our nifty pink rubber eraser. Suddenly, the thing just broke.
If you’re concerned about this very possibility, opt for a stiff and dense eraser that can withstand your elbow grease.
Note: the sleeve is also an important actor. Look at that little sash of cardboard around your eraser. Are the corners cut out? If they are, means your eraser is going to have a hard time snapping. When you press down on your eraser, you’re actually digging the sleeve into it. If the corners are notched, the sleeve’ll actually open up a bit, easing up pressure on your eraser. The more you know.
The Issue of Shavings
It’s one of the laws of nature. Erase, and you’ll end up with shavings all over your lap, your desk, your rug. In order to prevent this, get an eraser whose shavings clump together neatly or roll into a ball.
Shavings from white erasers can be hard to see. It’s a good idea to get a colored eraser so the shavings stick out.
Shape Is Important
There’s a good chance you might be an artist and have artistic inclinations. You might choose an eraser depending on how it looks, and that’s fine. However, what’s more important is your ability to actually keep your eraser for an extended amount of time. Choose an eraser that’s easy to fit in your pen case, lest you want to order them every week.
And while an eraser shaped like a cat might seem like an irresistible temptation, think: do you have enough surface area to erase anything? Can you even bear to erase anything with that cute kitty? Practicality is everything.
Top 10 Best Erasers to Buy Online
Kneaded, rubber, vinyl, gum–which eraser is best? The answer depends on you and what you’re looking for. Now that you’ve completed your crash course in the world of erasers, get ready to be introduced to the best erasers to buy online.
10. School Smart Latex Free Block Eraser
Value Choice Rubber Eraser
Now, just hear us out. We’ll be honest. This isn’t an eraser that you’ll write home about. It erases pencil, and frankly it does that pretty well. However, it won’t last as long as household brands Paper Mate or Pentel. These erasers are actually quite small. The picture above is deceiving; this eraser is about the size of your thumbnail.
We decided to include this eraser on our list because it comes in a pack of 80. Yes, you read that right. That’s only about $.05 per eraser, and that’s a deal we just simply had to put on this list. This product is probably geared towards school teachers and administrators who need to supply a school. However, if you’re in the market for a rubber block eraser, why not get 80 of them for a great price?
9. Paper Mate Pink Pearl Eraser
Tried and Trusted Schoolyard Rubber Eraser
Chances are you’ve used this eraser before in school. For a measly $1.50, this offer from Amazon equips you with three classic rubber erasers. That’s $.50 an eraser, a good price for an eraser that’ll evoke a tinge of childhood nostalgia. We’ll bet you didn’t know that the very concept of the pink eraser has been around since the late 1800s, and it started here.
The Pink Pearl is latex free, so those of you allergic to natural rubber latex need not worry. Its flat surface and rounded edges offer you precise and general erasing capabilities. Use this eraser for any type of pencil writing. You’ll have a hard time erasing pen with this eraser. Doing so will likely tear the paper.
8. Paper Mate White Pearl Eraser
The Pink Pearl’s Younger Brother
Here’s the deal. People don’t know about Paper Mate’s White Pearl, and they really should. This is a rubber eraser that might not have feel as familiar in your hand, but it arguably does the job better than the Pink Pearl. It has all the qualities of the Pink Pearl: latex free, smooth face, and rounded edges.
The White Pearl is better because it’s white, and it doesn’t leave pink marks on the paper. Additionally, reports suggest that the white eraser is softer and gives a more pleasant erase. Besides, it’s hard to beat the above deal: $6.45 for 12 of these bad boys. This is a great eraser for standardized tests because it won’t leave pink streaks on your scantron.
7. Prismacolor ArtGum Block Eraser
Reliable Gum Eraser for Work and Play
Don’t be fooled by the Artgum name; this eraser isn’t just for artists. This gum eraser is also a popular choice for students who are looking for a step up from the familiar Pink Pearl. This one’s a gum eraser, which means it’ll crumble away in your fingers if you squeeze too hard. But it’s pliable and won’t strip the skin off your paper.
This eraser will make pencil marks, charcoal, and, chalk disappear without much effort. Reports also suggest that they clean suede shoes pretty well, an added and unlikely bonus. Unlike the White and Pink Pearls, its corners are sharp, so it may be a little more difficult to erase small areas.
6. Staedtler Plastic Vinyl Eraser
Vinyl Eraser for Supreme Erasibility
If you’re cool with opening up your wallet (granted it’s only about 6 bucks), choose this vinyl eraser. Why? Simply put, it gets the job done. If you really have hard feelings towards something you just wrote, this eraser will banish it to an unknown place.
In addition to graphite, these erasers will erase colored pencil marks. That might leave a mark on the eraser though, but that’s what it’s for. Additionally, this specific offering comes in a 4 pack for a manageable price. It also comes with a carrying case.
5. Faber Castell Kneaded Eraser
Smaller Pliable Artists’ Eraser
If you’re an artist, you’re probably familiar with the company Faber Castell. They are one of the world’s oldest stationery and art supply companies based in Germany. Here’s an eraser that can absorb pencil and charcoal. The advantage of kneaded erasers is their ability to be morphed into whatever shape you desire.
This eraser won’t pull all the graphite from your drawing if you don’t want it to. If you only want to lighten your drawing (or your essay), just apply light force and let the eraser do the trick. This eraser is not recommended for erasing large drawings or papers, though.
4. Pentel Hi-Polymer Block Eraser
Small High Quality Rubber Eraser
Here’s a direct competitor to the White and Pink Pearl brands from Paper Mate. It’s latex free and also comes in a pack of three. Instead of the Pink Pearl’s rounded sides and edges, this eraser has sharp corners and edges. Although it’s more expensive than Paper Mate’s brands, it’s a softer and less abrasive option.
Each eraser in this pack comes with a sleeve that will help extend the eraser’s life. Even though it’s not marketed to artists, reports suggest that this eraser does a great job getting rid of colored pencil, charcoal, and pastels. That’s a pretty good deal for a schoolyard eraser.
3. Acurit Vanish 4-1 Artist Eraser
Clean Eraser That Erases All Things Pencil
To be honest, we’re not exactly sure what this eraser is made out of. Acurit claims that this eraser is a one-size-fits-all vanishing device that replaces “gum, rubber, vinyl and kneaded erasers.” The results are in: it works. The “Vanisher,” as we like to call it, erases graphite, charcoal, colored pencils, and pastels.
Just a reminder, a lot of these products are marketed towards artists who require a more versatile eraser than your average Pink Pearl. If you’re not an artist, don’t let these marketing tactics scare you from splurging. The Vanisher is smooth, its shavings won’t scatter on your desk or writing surface, and it has a flexible composition that won’t break under pressure.
2. Prismacolor Kneaded Rubber Eraser
Large Kneaded Eraser That Keeps on Giving
Compared to Faber Castell’s kneaded offering, Prismacolor’s counterpart is simply bigger. That means it’ll last longer. This eraser removes chalk, colored pencils, pastels, and charcoal. Because it’s kneaded, it’s not going to leave shavings. Instead, it’s going to absorb the markings and eventually become discolored.
When a certain side of the eraser is too worn, simply fold it into itself and use another side of the eraser. Even though it’s more expensive, Prismacolor’s kneaded rubber is simply more precise than Faber Castell. If you’re an artist or student or neither, this kneaded eraser will offer you a greater degree of control over your work.
1. Tombow for Ink and Pencil Sand Eraser
Need to Erase Glue? An Eraser That’s Up To the Challenge
Pencil, colored pencil, ink, watercolor, gel pens, glue. Here’s an eraser that will erase pretty much anything, and is the only eraser on our list that is partly comprised of sand. On one end of the eraser is your classic rubber, and on the other end is sand. The real value in this eraser comes from the sand side, which can erase ink and colored pencil.
Be careful though, the sand side can be rough on card stock and can tear thinner parchment without careful use. This eraser is made and manufactured in Japan, so it may take a little longer to come in the mail than usual. However, this eraser is number 1 on our list because it can simply erase everything. It’s worth the wait.
Make an Eraser Yourself
There’s an alternative to purchasing an eraser. If you’re feeling up to the challenge, you can make an eraser yourself.
Purchase Eraser Clay
Visit your local craft store and look for eraser clay. Don’t be afraid to mix and match colors to make an eraser in your preferred style. Once you get the clay, simply mold and shape it to the form that you want.
A good eraser should be large in size and have a few sides so it’s easy to grip. Having a blocky (versus a round or amoebic) eraser give you the freedom to erase big or small. You probably already have tools in your kitchen that will help you cut and shape your eraser. Consider butter knives, dough rollers, and toothpicks for this purpose.
Equip Yourself With Correction Tape for Added Protection
Remember that time you filled out a document with a ballpoint pen only to realize you made a mistake at the very beginning and now you have to redo everything? Yeah, we’ve all been there. Sometimes, an eraser just won’t erase it. Introduce correction tape into your arsenal, and there won’t be any error you can’t cover up. Once the white tape covers your mistake, simply write on top of it and no one will know the difference.
So there you have it. There are many great erasers on the market to choose from. The type of eraser you choose directly depends on your preference of writing implement.
No one’s perfect. Writers and artists make mistakes, and that’s completely okay. That’s what erasers are for. Choose an eraser from above and you won’t be sorry.