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Wet Erase vs Dry Erase Markers: Which Is Better?

Written by Robert S. Brown / Fact checked by Helen B. Harris

wet erase vs dry erase marker

Have you ever written on surfaces with a rough marker? How about trying to remove stubborn writings on your whiteboard? Believe me or not, markers play a part in all these inconveniences.

To dope out these issues, buy a marker, depending on where you plan to use it. We will aid you in sorting out the best for your work and know a few things about wet erase vs dry erase markers. What are the highlights of the two?

Dry Erase and Wet Erase Markers Comparison


Dry Erase Markers allow breezy erasing, thus ideal for short-term writings. Meanwhile, Most wet erase makrers have a semi-permanent ink that gives long-lasting writing. Plus, The latter type is good for resisting heat.

I could not really tell if the other one is better than the other, as it solely depends on your purpose of writing. If you want a marker to keep up with discussions or presentations, Dry Erase Markers are perfect choices.

However, if you work at restaurants or offices, Wet Erase Markers can come in handy when writing for signs, display surfaces, office templates, and putting on reminders on your calendars.

The features of wet erase and dry erase markers are indeed competing. So, before you go choosing between the two, let me tell you more about dry erase and wet erase markers first.

Dry Erase Markers

A Dry Erase Marker is known as being the most popular writing tool, especially for whiteboard writing. Back in my uni days, I always went for this one when studying and jotting down important reminders in my mini whiteboard back at the dorm.

If you want a marker that suits any surface aside from the whiteboard, this is a good choice to have as it also works night and day for overhead projector films, signboards, and other non-porous walls and surfaces.

Not to mention the easy wipe that this product guarantees to give your surface a squeaky clean they deserve. You can easily wipe off any writings with either a piece of clothing or a whiteboard eraser.

My professors also use dry erase markers because of the features I previously mentioned – easily wipe discussions on the board. This feature gives them a smoother and quicker flow of the lessons and meetings they tend to attend.

People ask how this magic happens in a single pen. Well, the answer to this is very simple.

The ink of dry erase markers is alcohol-based, and that’s what makes their markings easy to remove.

Wet Erase Markers

Wet Erase Markers go the other way. This type of marker has water-soluble colorants and is made for acetates, non-porous plastic-coated boards, or films. The ink of wet erase markers is paste-based, so you can expect the writings to be semi-permanent.

Another good thing that I love about Wet Erase Markers is that they are highly resistant to heat. I left it once in a scorching room in my university, and when I came back for it, it was still working just as fine.

I can also guarantee that it would not dwindle off or bubble when using it on well-lit panels and projector lamps. You can label those surfaces with definite ease.

A wet erase marker have higher compatibility than Dry Erase ones as they can be used for black marker boards, glass, and whiteboards. However, you can only remove its writings using damp clothing or smooth tissue paper.

Which Is Better?

The answer to this query solely depends on how you intend to use a certain type of marker.

If you are an undergrad or a professor who constantly discusses subjects quickly, a Dry Erase Marker is the way to go. This type can definitely keep up with the speed of your lesson with no worries. You do not have to spend time wiping off the writings on board.

But if you are a busy person in the corporate world that needs constant reminders of schedules and meetings, Wet Erase Markers are suitable for you. However, this doesn’t limit to businessmen or office workers in the corporate world.

Restaurants and hotels that offer their services on signs and display boards can also use wet erase markers as they are more lasting than dry erase ones.

More About It


Did you know that Wet Erase Markers come with more additional types?

Yes, it has a unique type known as the Liquid Chalk Marker and Rainproof Marker.

A Liquid Chalk Marker is a unique wet erase marker as they are precisely designed for chalkboard writing. It delivers a chalk-like finish when it dries out.

You can let out your creativity with a Liquid Chalk Marker as it comes in a wide range of lively colors, making them highly versatile. This type is an ideal choice for foodservice businesses that aim to captivate customers with vivid colors in their board menu.

Aside from chalkboards, you can also use this marker on cut-glass, rubbers or plastics, mirrors, metallic walls, and other non-porous surfaces.

The next one is the Rainproof marker. This type is great for outdoor and commercial use. Businesses use this to advertise their products by displaying them on sidewalk signs right in front of their establishment.

Restaurants also love to use rainproof markers on their tabletop signage, especially when their restaurants are located outdoors.

Despite being rainproof, you can easily wipe off writings with rainproof markers with a damp cloth.

The available types of wet erase markers might make you confused. For beginners, it’s a good choice to go for Shuttle Art Wet Erase Markers. One set comes with 12 different colors of fine-tipped markers that do not smudge.

But if you prefer the classic dry erase marker, I highly recommend EXPO 80074 Dry Erase Markers. Unlike other dry erase markers, this one only gives a faint unwanted odor that does not sting your sense of smell.

Plus, it is available in bright and vivid colors that are non-toxic and do not smear. You can even see its consistent color quality even from a distance.

Extend Your Marker’s Life

It is good to know how to prolong your marker’s life, whether it’s a dry erase or a wet erase one.

So to give your markers extra life, make sure to keep them tightly capped and always store them horizontally when you are not using them.

How to Clean Your Whiteboards

No one wants to write on messy whiteboards, and since you already know everything about markers, knowing how to clean where you write it off can also be a piece of handy information.

Choosing the right markers for your whiteboards keeps them squeaky clean and ghost-free. The next time you write something on the board, you might not want to leave any marks for an extended period as it makes cleaning more challenging next time.

To know more about markers, you can watch this short video.


Since I have laid out more features about it and how to take good care of this product, I’m sure your next marker will last longer.

If you are confused about what to buy between wet erase vs dry erase markers, try the user-friendly Shuttle Art Wet Erase Markers and Dry Erase Markers.

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