All types of erasers (and when to use them)

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Your mother told you, “Everyone makes mistakes.” “This is why pencils have erasers.” But have I ever told you how different they are Species of erasers out there? If you think there is only a file OnePink men found in Pencil end or wedge shape—you’re, well, wrong.

There are a surprising number of different types of erasers, each intended for a very specific purpose. If you’ve ever tried to erase something and ended up with a hazy smudge on a crumbling surface, you’ve probably been using the wrong One. Here’s a guide to the surprisingly large number of erasers, so at least you’re not doing a job that Twice wrong.

Rubber erasers are the most common

These erasers at the end of #2 pencils and in wedges are made of rubber. While the classic rubber eraser is pink in color, you can find it in a wide range of shades. Rubber erasers aren’t the sturdiest and softest; They’re kind of in the middle. This makes them better for erasing graphite from pencil marks without damaging standard-weight paper, but it also means that they’re not particularly effective for other markers or thin paper—if you use a rubber eraser on tracing paper, for example, you’ll end up with a tattered mess. . Rubber erasers also work in part by crumbling, which leaves a lot of dust behind. You can find “Dust-free” versions That leaves behind crumbs that can easily be rolled into a ball for quick disposal.

Plastic erasers can erase ink

These erasers are usually white in color, are actually made of vinyl, and usually come in a wrapper. They can handle just about any type of marking media, including ink, on a wide variety of surfaces, including paper, vellum, or even film. The downside is that they will completely destroy delicate things like paper if you’re not careful.

You will also often see “Combi” versions of the plastic eraser that features one end for ink and and film erasing, and one end for cleaning up graphite on paper. If you’re working on a delicate surface like drawing or tracing paper, a vinyl Magic Rub The eraser is designed to erase cleanly without damaging it.

Professional technical erasers

These white plastic erasers work on graphite and charcoal, but not ink. They look like other plastic erasers, but are usually labeled as “Technical” or “Technic” erasers. They are essentially “professional” erasers that drafting professionals use to erase marks on technical drawings, because they are so precise and so persistent. This is usually overkill for anyone who isn’t working on charts or something, although it does allow you to be very precise with your scanning process.

Gum art erasers work on canvas

Gum erasers are also rubber erasers (usually brown or clear), but softer than the typical pink eraser. It works the same way – it crumbles as it absorbs graphite or other markers from surfaces – but because it crumbles into a fine, dry powder, it can also be used on fabric or even leather as well as paper, which erases markers without harming the material. You probably don’t need a gum eraser for everyday use, but it can come in handy if you ever need to erase marks on clothing or if the mess of a typical eraser bothers you.

Kneaded erasers are for artists

Kneaded erasers are very soft and can be sculpted into different shapes. Instead of collapsing, they work by lifting the marks off the surface. Found in grey, black, or even white, they are mainly used in artistic applications, as they can be shaped into any shape and used to lighten or smudge areas of a drawing in very subtle ways (especially when working with charcoal, though they will work on graphite as well). They can come in handy anytime you need to erase something without damaging the surface, as they are non-abrasive.

Kneaded erasers will get dirty over time, as they absorb what you erase. they can cleaned and washedHowever, this gives them a new life.

Erasers work like a pencil in reverse

erasers oreraser pencilsThey’re just rubber erasers, but they come in pencil form—so they can be sharpened like a pencil. So while they’re not technically a different type of eraser, it’s useful to know—if you ever need to erase some very fine lines, you can One is sharpened for precise pointing and erasing.You can find pencils with eraser tips instead of the standard rubber tip erasers, making it easier to switch back and forth.

Soap erasers are for big jobs

These white, soft, and large erasers are often shaped like bars of soap. They are used to erase large sections quickly, with minimal collapse or damage to the surface. While they are mostly useful for artists, they can be used by anyone working with pencils or charcoal who sometimes needs to scan a full day’s work before they burst into tears.

While they can’t erase all of your mistakes (unfortunately, no eraser will work on the mess of relationships and awkward memories that still haunt you), there’s an eraser that’s perfect for most of them. Choose wisely.

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