If you are an avid autograph collector, then you already know that you can’t use just any pen for getting the signatures of your favorite celebrities. You have to use the best marker for autographs.
For instance, you must never use a ballpoint pen as it is unreliable and could not write on most surfaces. You must get something like a felt-tip pen for this purpose.
However, not all felt-tip markers are not that good for autographs. Continue reading to find out what sorts of markers you will need if you are collecting autographs and the type of object you want to be signed.
- Best Marker for Autograph Reviews
- 1. Sharpie 39108PP Metallic Permanent Markers
- 2. Sakura 44181 Identi-Pen Permanent Markers
- 3. Frienda Metallic Marker Pens
- 4. Avery Marks-A-Lot Permanent Markers
- 5. Dyvicl Metallic Marker Pens
- 6. Mr. Pen Permanent Markers
- 7. Emooqi Fabric Permanent Pen Markers
- 8. Shuttle Art Permanent Markers
- 9. Pilot V Sign Felt Tipped Fineliner Pens
- 10. US Art Supply Super Markers
- What to Look For When Buying a Marker for Autograph
- Frequently Asked Questions
Best Marker for Autograph Reviews
1. Sharpie 39108PP Metallic Permanent Markers
The best thing about these silver sharpie autograph markers is that they are always at the ready. This is important if you are out there hunting for autographs. I like how you do not need to shake this marker to get the ink flowing. You just have to take the cap off and start writing. Having to shake the pen in front of celebrities can be quite awkward.
These metallic colors are also great because they contrast well with almost any background. However, you can expect them to work best when used on a black or dark surface.
I noticed that these markers work best when you want to get collectible cards and the like autographed. The silver ink can contrast well regardless of the background color it falls on. This means that you will always get a legible autograph.
Many people made the mistake of using markers that are too fine for autographs. These markers do not look as good as those with broader tips. I would only use a fine tip pen only for signing documents.
However, I would prefer my autographs to have a thicker line weight, making these markers the perfect choice. These markers feature fine tips that are useful when the autograph has a lot of tiny details.
I also love how quickly this marker’s ink dries. It doesn’t even matter what surface you wrote on. The ink would dry almost immediately. It is the reason why many consider it the best autograph pen, or at least in the top 10. In other words, the autograph you painstakingly waited for in line would not smudge, even if you deliberately tried.
Moreover, once the ink dries, it would not fade easily. It will not fade even if you leave it exposed to direct sunlight for a while, which I highly advise that you do not do.
The only problem I had so far with Sharpies is that you need to put the cap back on incredibly tight or else the ink would dry up quickly. It is the caveat of having quick-drying ink. It will not stop drying even if it is still in the pen.
2. Sakura 44181 Identi-Pen Permanent Markers
The neat thing about this marker is that you are essentially getting two pens in one. The Sakura Identi-Pen comes with two writing tips, one at either end of the marker. One is a fine fiber-tipped, which is the best pen for signing photographs and other general writing tasks. The other is a hard plastic ultrafine tip, perfect for precision drawings.
One thing that you can expect from this pen is that even though there are two tips, neither of them will leak. I have always been afraid to put pens in my shirt pocket because I am constantly afraid that they would leak and leave a conspicuous stain. This has not happened yet in the months that I have been constantly using this product.
I also liked how the felt-tipped nib makes it quite easy to write on smooth non-porous surfaces. I have been using this marker for writing on glass, and you would not believe just how uniform the lines this leaves on the surface. I rarely need to go back on my lines to darken them. They layer on nicely the first time.
Another reason why I like using this marker for getting autographs is that it can write on various surfaces. It is great for autographing CDs, helmets, catcher’s mitts, and any memorabilia that you have. I was most surprised at just how great it was for writing on leather. The lines are crisp and clear that it almost looks like they are printed on there.
A word about the product before you start writing on glass and porcelain – these markers are not permanent on non-porous surfaces. It is not an acrylic marker. Once the ink dries, it will crack and chip easily. If you want the writing to be somewhat permanent, go over the lines using clear nail polish or spray a clear coat over them.
3. Frienda Metallic Marker Pens
What I liked the most about these metallic markers is that they have firm, but still flexible, felt brush tips. Now, if you are not familiar with how to use these types of nibs properly, you may be unable to make fine lines with them. I have been practicing using these tips for years and I like how they can copy the appearance of real brush strokes.
What you do not want to happen when a celebrity is giving you their autograph is your pen accidentally blotting the thing that you are having signed. It will not happen with the Frienda markers. In my experience, and I have gone through almost a dozen of these markers, they always wrote smoothly. The ink dries fast as well.
Speaking of autographs, these markers are the perfect line weight for them. The tips are fine enough even for the most intricate of signatures but still lay down thick enough lines to make them seem to pop out of the paper. Also, the metallic colors contrast nicely regardless of the medium.
Sometimes, I also use these markers when I host parties at my home. I like using these to write the occasion on the glassware (along the base so there is not accidental ingestion) to make things a bit more fun. I also like using these like dry erase markers on mirrors. They clean off easily using just a damp rag, so there is no risk of stains.
As mentioned, although these markers can write on glass and porcelain, they are not permanent. They will wash off with just plain water. If you want to make the markings permanent, you would need to spray a layer of clear coat over them.
4. Avery Marks-A-Lot Permanent Markers
The Avery markers have been around for years and their quality standards have not changed at all. They still make great writing implements. These large chisel-tipped markers are not an exception. Not only is this the best pen for autographing baseballs, but I use it for simple and fancy calligraphy as well.
What I liked about Avery markers, in general, is that they have large pen bodies that allow them to hold a lot of ink. These larger markers work great whenever you have a large drawing project, like making a mural. You will discover that you have enough ink for an entire wall section in just one marker.
I also like using these markers when getting memorabilia autographed. The ink dries fast. It means that there is not even time for smudging. Unlike other markers where you must be careful after writing, you do not need to blow on the ink when using the Avery permanent markers. It is most likely already dry by then.
Another great thing about these markers is that they can write on almost all surfaces, at least all the surfaces where I have tried them on. I’ve used these markers on card stock, wood, plastic, leather, clay, glass, and porcelain. And so far, the markings are all still there. All the signatures in my autographed catcher’s mitts are also still crisp.
What I did not like about these markers is that the chisel tip is not as fine as I wanted it to be. Even when turned on its side, the line is still a bit too thick for the kinds of drawings that I liked. However, it is purely subjective and may not even bother most folks.
5. Dyvicl Metallic Marker Pens
These markers come in a set of 10 colors with all of them looking great. I used to only use silver pens for getting dark items autographed, but thanks to these markers, I now like to mix them up whenever I can. These days, I gravitate more towards the bright blue metallic marker because it contrasts well on dark backgrounds.
These markers are also a dream to use. The firm fiber tips apply the ink nicely on paper and other mediums. I sometimes use these to draw simple caricatures and for calligraphy projects and the lines were never uneven. I like the consistency of the ink flow and how it applies just enough ink that it will not bleed through paper.
Unlike other metallic pens I have used before, you do not need to give these markers a good shake before use. I used the ones that you have to shake once to get an autograph, and it was quite embarrassing to shake the marker up a bit before handing it over to the celebrity. With these pens, you just remove the cap and commence writing.
Do not expect a fine tip on these markers. These have 2mm nibs that are awesome for filling up spaces with color. However, I also find that it is just the right line weight for autographs. With that, celebrities can sign their names larger, thereby making their autographs a bit more valuable.
Unfortunately, these are not permanent markers, so it is possible to wash them off even when dried. What I do to make them permanent is I spray a thin layer of clear coat on top of the autographs to protect them. This might seem like a hassle for most people, but I am willing to compromise just because I liked the colors.
6. Mr. Pen Permanent Markers
At first glance, you would think that these markers are Sharpies. The reason is that they have almost the same designs, including the letterings on the body. Take a closer look, though, and you will see that they are from Mr. Pen. Although these highly affordable markers look like knock-offs, I was surprised at how well they wrote.
Yes, they might look like copies of Sharpies, but one thing is for sure, they do write like them. I have been using these markers for a while now and they have been consistent so far. Although they are not the best markers by far, they still write incredibly well. Lines are always uniform and they do not leak at all.
For the price, Mr. Pen certainly did not skimp on ink quality. Although the ink is not quite as dark as other brands, they do have a uniform consistency. There are no segments in the lines that are thinner than the rest. Everything I drew with these markers is pretty much the same, which is more than I could want in a marker.
If I were to pick out one thing about this marker that I can say I liked, it would be the nib. The tips of these markers are the hard fiber that carries the ink efficiently, and they have just enough flex to make them comfortable to write with. I can easily vary the line weight by putting a bit more pressure on the nib.
The only problem that I had with these markers is that of the 12 items in the pack, three were already dried. I managed to make them work by putting a bit of isopropyl alcohol inside the pens, but it would have been much better if I did not have to do it.
7. Emooqi Fabric Permanent Pen Markers
If you are searching for the best paint pen for autographs, then this one from Emooqi is worthwhile to try. It has a somewhat thick consistency that allows the fabric paint to settle on top of the fabric without bleeding too much. This results in crisp lines and very legible autographs. The markers don’t bleed even when used on thinner fabrics, too.
Although I make it a habit not to wash my autographed shirts, I have used these markers on other pieces that I have washed more than once, and the color remained vibrant. I also found that the items are the perfect gift for kids. They can design and color their shirts, a great project to keep them busy while stuck inside the house.
These markers are easy to use, which is why they are also great gifts for kids. There is no need to prepare the fabric before drawing, aside from stretching it out on a flat surface to make drawing easier. Just use them as you would any regular pen. When drawing on the thicker fabric, you will most likely need just one pass.
I also liked how long the colors stay on fabrics. Even after washing them a couple of times already, the shirts that I drew on using these markers still looked nice. The edges of the lines blurred a bit, which is to be expected, but not by much. The colors also remained bright. I noticed that only certain colors seemed a bit washed out.
Now, although I had no real issues with these markers regarding how they work, I do wish that they had more ink in them. I wanted to cover the front of a white shirt completely with a copy of a famous painting, but I had to go through around three sets as there is not much ink in them.
8. Shuttle Art Permanent Markers
These markers look like Sharpies, but you can get them at a fraction of the cost. I was a bit skeptical at first when I first got them, but I became a believer quickly after using them.
The Shuttle-Art markers work just as well as other brands but at a more affordable price. I often misplace my Sharpies so having an entire box of cheaper alternatives is great.
Just like the more expensive brands, like the Staedtler pens for autographs, these markers have quick-drying inks. The ink dries up completely in just a couple of seconds after writing. It will not also smudge once dry, making it the best pen to sign a baseball.
Moreover, they are permanent on non-porous surfaces. I used these markers on a couple of plastic containers and even after several wash cycles, the markings are still as clear as ever.
The lines made by these markers are as black as they can be, thanks to the ink having a lot of pigment. I must give props to Shuttle-Art. Even though their markers are affordable, they did not skimp out on the ink. These markers are the best pen for baseball card autographs as the lines they make are crisp and dark.
Unlike the other cheap brands of markers, these items do not emit any fumes at all. When I use other cheap markers, I need to ensure that I am in a well-ventilated room as I get dizzy easily from the fumes. That is not an issue with these markers. Even when I put my face right above the piece I am working on, I can hardly get a whiff of fumes.
Now here is the kicker, the markers do not have quite as much ink in them as compared to the more expensive brands. I estimate that these have around 2/3 the amount of ink as that of a regular Sharpie. If you will be using them on an autograph run, then you better carry at least two or three just to be on the safe side.
9. Pilot V Sign Felt Tipped Fineliner Pens
I have always been a fan of the old school PILOT sign pens and this new generation of sign pens is a worthy successor. These pens retained the reliable ink flow regulators that were on the old sign pens and made them even better. Every line comes out evenly without fail, which is why I think these are among the best pens for book autographs.
Unlike the older models of PILOT pens that have a metal tip, these new ones have felt tips, making them even more comfortable to write on all kinds of surfaces. You can also expect them to work great when writing on glossy card stock, thanks to the felt tips. These felt tips just glide over surfaces and do not snag.
Unlike the older sign pens, these newer ones have a thicker line weight. The older ones make 0.5mm thick lines while these write around 0.7mm thick lines. The thicker line weight and the felt tips make these sign pens ideal for autographing collectible cards and similar card stock. However, I would not recommend using these markers when signing memorabilia, especially those made of plastic or glass.
Another thing that I liked about the old school sign pens is you can see just how much ink is left in the barrel and you can see this nifty feature in these new markers. Unlike other markers and felt-tip pens, you have no idea when the ink will run dry. With the PILOT sign pens, you will never be caught by surprise. When you see that the ink in the barrel is running low, that is the time you need to carry a spare marker with you.
This marker is great as a general writing instrument, but for autographs, I do not advise using it. For one thing, the ink does not dry nearly fast enough to prevent smudging. It means several ruined autographs.
Also, they are not ideal for writing on smooth non-porous surfaces. The ink does not adhere well on slick surfaces and you can easily rub them off by just using your hands.
10. US Art Supply Super Markers
Jerseys and band t-shirts are great for autographing, but you should not use just any old marker. The ink would bleed through the fabric if you did. US Art Supply specifically made these markers for writing onto all kinds of fabrics, so you do not need to worry about the colors bleeding into the fibers.
Moreover, the pens come in a variety of colors, so you can give your autographs a bit more pizazz. They come with both bullet- and chisel-point tips, too. The bullet-point tips are great for making tight lines while the chisel-point is great for broader strokes and filling in spaces with colors. You don’t need to switch from one kind of pen to another.
These markers are also great gifts for kids. You can give each kid a set and allow them to let their imaginations loose. They can make their custom-designed shirts, bags, shoes, and many other items that they can write on. Aside from being fun to use, these markers are also non-toxic and easy to wash off the skin in case of accidents.
As mentioned earlier, I used these markers for autographing different kinds of sports jerseys, t-shirts, and even shoes. Regardless of the kind of fabric you have, the markers can write on it. Now, I do not have any plans to wash my autographed pieces, but if you use these on your clothes, they will be safe to wash, if set properly of course.
Speaking of setting, unlike other fabric markers, you will need to set the ink into the fabric using a flat iron. If you do not have a flat iron, a good portion of the pigment will wash out of your clothes the first time you wash them. You will then need to reapply the markers to keep their colors vibrant. It can be quite tedious if done a couple of times.
What to Look For When Buying a Marker for Autograph
You need to be picky when you are shopping around for markers to use for autographs. Keep in mind that you may not get the chance to get a celebrity’s autograph again, so it would be better for you to find the best markers to avoid wasting the opportunity.
Here are some of the qualities that you need to look for when you are shopping for the best marker for autographs.
Ink Drying Time
The ink of the marker should dry almost immediately once laid down on the writing surface. With that, you can prevent the ink from smudging.
The ink should be somewhat thick and have a uniform consistency. When you draw a line, there should be no parts that are lighter than the rest. Ideally, it should just be one solid line.
Also, the color of the ink should be bright and vibrant if you are using colored markers. They should contrast well against the background to make the autograph pop.
The ink should not be so thin that it bleeds into the paper, making the autograph look like a big inkblot. The ink should have a rather thick consistency to the point that it would only absorb at the topmost layer of the paper instead of bleeding into it.
Easy to Hold and Use
You will be asking different celebrities for their signatures so the least you can do is hand them a marker that is easy to use. Handing over a metallic marker and then telling the celebrity to give it a good shake and blot the tip might seem too much, right?
Use a pen that you do not need to prep before use, or at least, do the preparations yourself before reaching the front of the line.
Frequently Asked Questions
How do you Get a Permanent Marker off a Basketball?
First, you need to wash the basketball with soap and water. Scrub the permanent marker with a stiff-bristled brush to get as much of it as you can. Rinse the basketball with clean water and wipe it dry.
Next, dampen a soft rag with rubbing alcohol and proceed to wipe away the ink. Repeat this step as many times as necessary until you get rid of all the ink.
What Color Ink is Best for Autographs?
This will depend on the item that you want to be autographed. If the background is mostly black or dark colors, a gold or silver metallic marker will provide the most contrast, making the signature more visible. If the background is mostly white, like the inner pages of a book, you cannot go wrong with a basic black marker.
The thing with autographs is you cannot tell when or if you can get the person’s signature ever again. With that in mind, you need to make every encounter count. The best way to do that is to use the best pens for autographs.
You would not want that one chance you have for an autograph ruined because you used a sub-par marker. Make the most out of that opportunity by using the best marker for autographs.