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Alcohol Based Markers Vs. Water Based Markers – Ohuhu

Ohuhu alcohol-based and watercolor markers are a bit like tea and coffee. Some people prefer tea, other coffee and some even like both.

Don’t worry though, if you don’t like hot drinks, you can still like these markers and that’s because they are simply amazing!

While alcohol markers are designed for beginner, amateur and professional artists, Ohuhu watercolor markers are good for every level and everyone.

They are amazing if you want to get the first attempt at watercolor or if you simply want to discover a new medium. Their washability makes them usable by youngers without any troubles.

Keep in mind that the only limit both of these markers have is the one you give them and I’m pretty sure your imagination has no limit!  

Now, we all know that these markers are really different from each other. However, I thought that it would be interesting to compare them and really find out about their differences when it comes to layering, blending and the final result of our drawings.

Let’s start with the layering test,The first thing we notice is the big difference between the shades. You can layer your colors with both these markers. Although when working with Ohuhu alcohol markers you can fastly get limited with the saturation of your colors when on the contrary you get more freedom and more shades with Ohuhu watercolor markers. The pigmentation varies depending on the amount of water you will be using. 

As their names indicate, Ohuhu Watercolor markers are water-based and the alcohol markers are, you guessed it, alcohol-based.This is pretty obvious but still important to know especially when blending your colors.This also means that watercolor markers blend and mix with water.In this case, I applied the colors on my paper, then blended them with a water brush. Once it dried, I added a second layer on some of the areas I wanted to be more vibrant. Finally, since it is a galaxy, I finished by adding stars with a white pen.

Another good advantage of watercolor markers is that they can still be activated with water even when your drawing is all dry.

Lastly, if you want your drawing/ painting to have clean edges, apply some tape all-around your piece or the parts you want to protect and peel it off once it is all dry and done.

Now, when it comes to alcohol markers, they are plenty of ways to blend these markers and every artist has their own preferences.

Generally, you can blend your markers using an alcohol colorless blender or by mixing the colors from light to dark or dark to light depending on what you’re the most comfortable with.

For this example, I started by building the first layer of colors. I went from light to dark and overlaid my colors so they would be easier to blend and mix. I then added a second layer and really focused on blending part by part. The ink dries pretty quickly and once it did, it’s more complicated to work on it without having to add another layer.

Once I was done blending every part, I added one last layer of the Ohuhu colorless blender to get a very smooth result.

And if you’re working on a large surface make sure to use the broad nib of your marker, you will gain precious time! 

If you want more details regarding the usage of your Ohuhu markers, feel free to take a look at these 3 blog articles.

Another important difference between these 2 mediums is the paper. The potential of your art supplies will only be at their maximum when using the compatible paper.

For our Ohuhu alcohol markers, we need a smooth surface to prevent the nib from being damaged. We also need a paper that will not absorb all your ink and dry out your markers. Other than that, it’s up to your personal preferences.(Marker paper, smooth bristol, mixed media …. ) .

On the other hand, watercolor markers need a paper able to absorb a certain amount of water so you can blend and layer your colors without any troubles.

In this case, watercolor paper is your friend!

Little bonus tip, when working with brush markers, use the end of the nib to add tiny details that will make big differences. 

Regarding the application of your colors, you don’t have any choices when using your alcohol markers which is again different from your Ohuhu watercolor ones.

You can color your drawing directly from the nib, without using water, just like regular markers. You can also directly apply water on your paper to blend/mix your colors. Lastly, you can use a separate palette where you will do all the mixing and have more control over the pigmentation of your colors, then apply it with a brush just like paint.

The result of our drawings will obviously be very different.

The one made with the watercolor markers will definitely look like a painting,  the colors will be kind of pale and the textured paper will bring a nice touch to our piece.

On the other hand, our alcohol markers will have a smooth texture with brighter colors.

No one is really better than the other, it just depends on what you want to draw and what you want to use. Remember than the most important is to have FUN!

Last thing but not the least, something I love to do is combining art supplies. In this case, my two types of markers.

This is really fun to do and it brings more texture to your drawings. 

Here, in the first situation, I used my Ohuhu watercolor markers to color all the flowers then finished by adding a smooth intense black background with my 120 black alcohol marker.

You can also do the opposite and do a background with watercolor markers. 

Mixed media paper are really nice for these kinds of combinations. However, always be careful about the amount of water you are using. 

That’s it for today’s blog post, as always I hope this was helpful and that you learned something new. 

Have a wonderful day!

Stay safe, stay home and be careful. 

Leave a comment

  1. Wow, this was really helpful since I use both watercolor and alcohol based Ohuhu markers… A friend asked me what the difference was and which was better… I didn¡¯t know how exactly to tell her. Now I can just link this to her and let her decide!

  2. This is very helpful for people who wanna try one or the other, good job!

  3. I love the alcohol brush markers.

  4. Very interesting to compare the two!

  5. The alcohol markers are very saturated while the watercolor has a softer touch.

  6. One day I am going to have to try the water brush markers.

  7. I like both. Hopefully I¡¯ll get the watercolors soon!!

  8. I may have to try these one day. I have been using Tombow but have really been disappointed with them ??

  9. I always wondered the difference between both, thank you for the explanations!

  10. This was helpful! Hope I can get watercolor markers in the future as well

  11. Wow, The Ohuhu Watercolor Markers and alcohol markers looks so pretty!

  12. Thank you for clarifying them. Water-based vs alcohol-based markers ¨C which is better?

  13. Good Afternoon,?

    I clicked on this article because I wanted to compare “water BASED” markers to alcohol markers. Which is exactly what your subject line says. (see pic below)? However, this article is actually for “water COLOR” markers not “water BASED” markers.?WaterColor & Water Based markers are two different things.

    Can you post information on the differences between water based and alcohol?