Drawing Pencils

Alani Bartlett
15 min readApr 12, 2024



Discover the perfect tool to bring your artistic vision to life with our selection of top-rated drawing pencils. From classic graphite to cutting-edge digital options, our roundup unravels the best drawing pencils on the market. Let’s dive in and explore the finest ways to express your creativity.

The Top 10 Best Drawing Pencils

  1. Royal & Langnickel 21-Piece Essentials Sketching Set for Home Décor and Arts & Crafts — Explore your artistic side with the Royal & Langnickel Essentials Sketching Set, a 21-piece toolkit designed for home décor and arts and crafts projects, featuring easy usage and storage capabilities.
  2. Conte Pencil Set: Premium Artistic Drawing Tools — Expertly crafted Conte Pencil Sets offer a versatile drawing experience on endless surfaces with smudge-proof, soft pastel-compatible pencils that deliver precise lines and lifelike shading.
  3. Tavolozza Professional Drawing Pencils Set — Unleash your creativity with the Tavolozza Drawing Art Pencils Set, featuring a 34-piece assortment of essential tools for artists of all levels, protected by a convenient, customized zippered carrying case.
  4. Premium Sketching Art Kit with Drawing Pencils and Sketch Book — Immerse yourself in creative expression with the ADAXI Drawing Pencils and Sketch Book Set, featuring 35 professional-grade pencils and a 50-page sketchbook, all housed in a convenient zipper case for art enthusiasts of all ages.
  5. Premium Graphite Drawing Set with 18-Piece Selection — Experience professional-grade graphite drawing with the Prismacolor Premier 18-count set, featuring a wide range of Turquoise, woodless, and water-soluble pencils alongside essential sketching accessories.
  6. Amazon Basics Drawing Pencil Set — All-In-One Sketch Kit for Artists — Unlock your creative potential with the Amazon Basics Sketch and Drawing Art Pencil Kit — a versatile and high-quality set perfect for artists of all skill levels.
  7. Comprehensive Art Supplies Set for Drawing and Sketching — Complete your artistic journey with the versatile 72 Pcs Art Supplies Art Set, equipped with pre-sharpened graphite, oil-based, watercolor, metallic, and charcoal pencils, drawing tools, and a sketchbook, designed for individuals of all skill levels.
  8. Liwoowe Sketch Pencil Set with Canvas Wrap, Perfect for Artists — Create stunning masterpieces with Liwoowe’s Sketching Pencil Set, featuring versatile pencils for drawing, sketching, coloring, and blending, all conveniently wrapped in a durable canvas case for portability.
  9. Premium Mechanical Pencil Set with Assorted Tip Sizes and Eraser Refills — The Mr. Pen- Metal Mechanical Pencil Set offers a professional design with a comfortable grip, perfect for drafting, sketching, and architectural drawing in 5 different sizes.
  10. Leda 12-Piece Mechanical Pencil Set for Perfect Drawing Experience — Unleash your creative potential with the Leda Art Supply Mechanical Pencil Set, offering precision, versatility, and a variety of lead colors for all your drawing and sketching needs.

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Royal & Langnickel 21-Piece Essentials Sketching Set for Home Décor and Arts & Crafts


I recently fell in love with the Royal & Langnickel Essentials Sketching Set — a 21-piece set designed to elevate your drawing game. As someone who enjoys creating art and home décor, I couldn’t resist the versatility of this set.

The kit includes graphite pencils in various thicknesses, charcoal pencils, sketching sticks, charcoal sticks, a kneaded eraser, and even a sharpener. The assortment of tools means you’re prepared for any project, whether it’s sketching, shading, or blending colors. The convenient storage box keeps everything organized and easily accessible when not in use.

The Royal & Langnickel Essentials Sketching Set truly lives up to its name, making it a must-have for any artist or crafter. The quality of the materials and the thoughtful design make this set perfect for both beginners and professionals alike.

Conte Pencil Set: Premium Artistic Drawing Tools


This Conte Pencil Set is an excellent addition to any drawing enthusiast’s arsenal. Its large assortment of six pencils allows for diverse shading, perspectives, and detailed lines on various surfaces. These pencils feature a unique blend of hardness and pigmentation, perfect for small and medium-sized formats where precision is key. The smooth leads and presence of abrasives offer a delightful drawing experience, ideal for newsprint and other paper types.

While these pencils have been praised for their quality and performance, users have also pointed out that they are slightly more expensive compared to other brands. However, many have expressed satisfaction with the results and even mentioned planning to purchase them again. The Conte Pencil Set is a must-have for figurative artists and sketch enthusiasts on the go, offering a versatile and high-quality drawing experience.

Tavolozza Professional Drawing Pencils Set


I recently had the pleasure of using the Tavolozza Drawing Art Pencils Set, and let me tell you, it exceeded my expectations. The set comes with a zippered carrying case, making it easy to travel with all your art tools while also keeping them safe and secure. Inside, you’ll find a variety of pencils, including sketching pencils, charcoal pencils, graphite sticks, and even an art knife.

One of the highlights of this set was the quality of the pencils themselves. They provided a smooth, consistent line and were ideal for both professionals and beginners. However, I did notice that the soft-sided carrying case wasn’t the most sturdy and could use some improvement in terms of durability.

Despite this minor flaw, the Tavolozza Drawing Art Pencils Set proved to be a fantastic tool for all my artistic endeavors. It has everything an artist needs, and I found myself reaching for it time and time again for my creative projects. Overall, this set is a worthwhile investment for anyone looking to take their sketching skills to the next level.

Premium Sketching Art Kit with Drawing Pencils and Sketch Book


As an artist, I was really impressed by the ADAXI Drawing Pencils with Sketch Book set. It’s such a comprehensive kit, perfect for both beginners and professionals. The pencils are high-quality, with a medium point that provides just the right amount of pressure for creating detailed sketches.

The sketch book itself is a great addition, with 50 pages that are perfect for quick sketches or more extended drawing sessions. The zipper case is a thoughtful touch, keeping all the pencils and book protected and organized.

However, one thing I noticed is that the pencils are quite hard, with a hardness of 6B. While this might be ideal for some, it can make blending and layering more challenging. Nevertheless, overall, this is a fantastic drawing kit that will surely help you unleash your creativity.

Premium Graphite Drawing Set with 18-Piece Selection


I’ve recently bought the Prismacolor Premier Graphite Drawing Set for myself. The variety of pencils in this set is impressive, including different hardness levels. They’re great to use for experimentation, creating different textures and shades.

However, I’ve noticed a few flaws. For instance, the wood on the turquoise pencils feels a bit cheap, and I wish the set had included an H pencil and a turquoise HB pencil. Also, one of my kneaded erasers came too dry and brittle, it was almost unusable.

Overall, despite these minor imperfections, the set provides excellent quality for its price. It’s a great starter set for anyone dabbling in sketching or improving their drawing skills. The pencils are not overly priced and the variety of hardness means you can easily find the right tool for your project!

Amazon Basics Drawing Pencil Set — All-In-One Sketch Kit for Artists


I recently gave the Amazon Basics Sketch and Drawing Art Pencil Kit a try and I must say, it’s become my go-to for all my sketching and drawing needs. As someone who’s always experimenting with different drawing techniques, I found the variety of pencils, sketching, and charcoal sticks to be a major plus. The hexagonal shape of the pencils not only adds a touch of professionalism to my work, but also provides a comfortable grip, even during long sketching sessions.

The sharpener and erasers that come with this set are essential for keeping my tools in top condition. And I really appreciate that even as a beginner, I can still create dynamic works of art or simply sketch out ideas with ease. The kit is incredibly versatile and is perfect for all skill levels, making it a great investment for any artist’s arsenal. Plus, the fact that it’s non-toxic is an added bonus.

Overall, I’m blown away by the quality of the pencils and the versatility of this set. It’s the perfect companion for any artist, offering great value for its price. Highly recommended!

Comprehensive Art Supplies Set for Drawing and Sketching


Embrace your artistic side with this versatile 72 Pcs Art Supplies Art Set, a comprehensive drawing and sketching kit for both adults and kids alike. With a wide range of pre-sharpened pencils, charcoal, and colored pencils, you’ll find everything you need to create stunning masterpieces.

The set includes a variety of drawing tools, from blending stumps to metal sharpeners, to help you master the art of sketching and blending, while the refillable water brush pen ensures smooth color application. This all-in-one kit also comes with a sketchbook and a coloring book to keep your creativity flowing, all neatly organized in a zippered travel case. Get ready to explore your artistic potential with this fully-equipped drawing pencils kit!

Liwoowe Sketch Pencil Set with Canvas Wrap, Perfect for Artists


I recently started using the Liwoowe Sketching Pencil Set for my daily sketching practice, and I have to say, it’s been an absolute game-changer. The pencils are perfect for adding fine details, blending, and shading, making my sketches more realistic and vibrant. What really caught my attention, though, was the premium, non-slip grip these pencils have. It’s a feature that I didn’t know I needed, but now I can’t imagine using anything else.

When it comes to organization and portability, this sketch kit truly shines. The canvas wrap not only keeps all the pencils safe and secure but also makes it incredibly easy for me to carry them around, no matter where my adventures take me. Plus, the wrap is much more durable than a zipper pencil bag, which is a nice added bonus.

Lastly, I appreciate that this sketching set is ideal for a wide range of users, from professionals to beginners, and everyone in between. It’s versatile and can be a great gift for someone special or a fantastic addition to one’s art supplies collection. Overall, it’s a top-quality sketching pencil set that I highly recommend to anyone looking to enhance their sketching experience.

Premium Mechanical Pencil Set with Assorted Tip Sizes and Eraser Refills


The Mr. Pen set is a premium choice for mechanical pencils, boasting five different sizes for their sleek metal bodies. The ergonomic design provides a comfortable grip during use, while the retractable closure adds a touch of sophistication. This assortment of pencils is ideal for both daily usage and specialized drawing tasks by catering to diverse needs. The set is perfect for professionals in architecture, art, and engineering, as well as teachers and students who appreciate its versatile applications.

While it may not be ideal for those with allergies or sensitivities to certain chemicals, the pencils’ performance and convenience make them a worthy investment for a wide range of users. Their versatility and the quality of their components, including HB leads and eraser refills, make them an essential tool for any artist or professional seeking precision in their craft. The Mr. Pen set is an excellent choice for those who demand both style and functionality in their mechanical pencils.

Leda 12-Piece Mechanical Pencil Set for Perfect Drawing Experience


The Leda Art Supply Mechanical Pencil Set is a versatile drawing tool perfect for artists of all levels. The 6.25-inch hexagonal polymer barrel is six-sided and tipped with brass, ensuring a comfortable grip for precise art-making.

With an iron clip holder, you can secure the pencil to your shirt or bag for easy access. The set includes a black 5B lead, which is preferred by artists for making bold lines, and a bonus sharpener to create the thinnest possible lines.

The Leda Mechanical Colored Pencil set also comes with two cases of colored leads and a sharpener, great for professional or fun drawing and sketching. The 12-piece 5B lead refill pack ensures you have plenty of drawing materials for your creative projects, and the retractable design adds convenience. This set is a must-have for artists who want to expand their artistic potential and create unique marks with art graphite.

Buyer’s Guide

Drawing is an art form that requires a wide range of tools, and one of the essential tools for any artist is a drawing pencil. These tools come in various shapes, sizes, and materials, making it crucial for you to understand the features you should be looking for before making a purchase. In this buyer’s guide, we’ll discuss the important aspects of drawing pencils to help you make an informed decision.


Importance of Drawing Pencils

Drawing pencils play a significant role in the process of creating art. They are used in various styles of drawing, including graphite pencil drawings, color pencil illustrations, and sketchbooks. With a wide variety of pencil types available, artists have the option to choose the one that suits their style and preferences best.

Key Considerations

When it comes to drawing pencils, there are several factors to consider to ensure you get the best fit for your needs. These include the type of material, lead hardness, shape, size, brand, and more. We’ll discuss these aspects in further detail to help you make the right decision for your drawing tools.


Understanding Drawing Pencil Types

There are different drawing pencil types available, each designed for a specific purpose. The most common types are graphite (also known as graphite lead, graphic lead, or graphite pencil lead) and colored pencil lead. These two types offer a range of hardness levels, from 2H (hardest) to 9B (softest) for graphite pencils and 6B to 8B for colored pencils. Each hardness level imparts a unique line quality, texture, and smudge resistance to create the desired visual effect.

Shape and Size Factors

Drawing pencils come in various shapes and sizes, with round to hexagonal being the most common. The hexagonal shape provides a firm grip and control, while round shapes are generally smoother and more comfortable to hold. The size of a pencil also plays a significant role, as larger pencils offer more control and precision. However, smaller sizes might be ideal for smaller hands or intricate details.



What are the main types of drawing pencils available?

There are several types of drawing pencils, primarily differentiated by their hardness or softness. The main types include HB (hardness), H (hard), B (blackness), and soft lead pencils. Each type has distinct uses and characteristics. For instance, HB pencils offer a balance of softness and hardness, making them suitable for general drawing purposes. Hard lead pencils are less smudgy and suitable for precise lines, while B or soft lead pencils provide darker lines and are ideal for shading and blending.

Other types of drawing pencils include watercolor, charcoal, and pastel pencils. Watercolor pencils are used for a variety of purposes, including creating watercolor-style drawings on paper and as an alternative to watercolor paints with traditional brushes. Charcoal pencils provide that familiar, traditional charcoal look and are often used for expressive, high-contrast sketches. Pastel pencils are designed to mimic the look and feel of traditional pastel chalk, perfect for creating soft, blended shadings.


How do I choose the right drawing pencil for my needs?

Choosing the right drawing pencil for your needs depends on your drawing style, the type of drawing you plan to do, and your personal preferences. If you prefer light, precise lines, a harder graphite pencil (H or HB) would be a suitable choice. If you need a pencil for bold lines and shading, a softer graphite pencil (B or 2B) could be more appropriate.

Consider the purpose of the drawing as well. For example, watercolor pencils are ideal for creating watercolor-style drawings with a variety of effects, while charcoal pencils generate expressive, high-contrast sketches. Ultimately, the choice comes down to what you feel most comfortable using and what aligns with your artistic goals.

What is the best way to sharpen my drawing pencil?

The best way to sharpen a drawing pencil depends on the type and quality of the wood casing and the sharpness you prefer. One popular method is using a mechanical pencil sharpener, which can provide a precise and consistent point without splintering or damaging the pencil tip. For those who prefer hand-sharpened pencils, a simple pencil sharpener or a traditional wood-based sharpener like a Staedtler Triangular Sharpener will do the job. The key is to sharpen the pencil steadily and lightly to avoid a crumbly tip.

If you’re using a charcoal or pastel pencil, you might want to try using a craft knife or a specialized pastel sharpener that is designed for these materials. Always be cautious when working with sharp objects, and remember to clean your sharpening tools regularly to avoid any accidents or damage to your materials.


What is the difference between graphite and charcoal drawing pencils?

The main difference between graphite and charcoal drawing pencils is their material composition and how they behave during the drawing process. Graphite pencils are made from graphite (a soft metal) encased in a wood casing, and they produce a variety of tones by applying different degrees of pressure. On the other hand, charcoal pencils are made from charcoal, which can be more delicate or crumbly, and they typically provide a high contrast, sooty line that is ideal for expressive, black-and-white sketches.

Graphite pencils offer more refined and precise lines, making them suitable for drawing detailed subjects with intricate lines. Charcoal pencils, on the other hand, create bold, dramatic lines with a softer, more natural feel, so they are often favored for loose, expressive sketches and drawings. Ultimately, the choice between graphite and charcoal drawing pencils depends on personal preference and the desired aesthetic for your artwork.

How do I clean my drawing pencils?

Cleaning your drawing pencils helps maintain their integrity and ensures a smoother drawing experience. Begin by wiping away any graphite smudges or residue with a soft, dry cloth. If there are any stubborn marks, you can gently use a kneaded eraser to remove the smudges without causing damage to the pencil.

If your pencil is excessively dirty or has accumulated graphite dust from constant use, you can clean it using a pencil eraser or a piece of fine-grit sandpaper. Hold the pencil at a 45-degree angle and lightly rub the affected area until the pencil is clean. Make sure not to use excessive force or rub the pencil too vigorously, as this might damage the wood casing or the graphite. Always store your drawing pencils in a clean, dry environment to prevent any potential future issues.

What are the best drawing pencils for beginners?

For beginners, it’s essential to choose drawing pencils that are user-friendly, versatile, and provide consistent results. Some popular options for beginners include General’s Mechanical Waterproof Pencils, Staedtler Mars 780 Premier Graphite Mechanical Pencils, and Faber-Castell Ecoline Mechanical Pencils.

These pencils offer a range of benefits, such as water-resistant tips that prevent smudging and bleeding on paper, comfortable grips for smooth and effortless drawing, and the ability to create a variety of line widths and tones for artistic flare. Regardless of which brand you choose, always remember to find a pencil that feels comfortable and natural in your hand and suits your artistic style and preferences.

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