What Chemicals Are Used in Washable Markers?

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Markers, also known as felt-tipped pens, are used by adults and children alike. Crayola introduced permanent markers to the market in 1978, however washable markers weren’t introduced until 1987.

Markers.
Markers.

Characteristics

Washable markers use food-coloring dyes, carboxylic acids and carboxylates, and a water-based solvent which prevents the color from sticking to surfaces. Modern washable markers feature vibrant dark colors, and do not look like watercolors. Traditional permanent markers are made from a pigment colorant, alcohol solvent and resin polymer.

Markers.
Markers.

Benefits

Teachers and parents do not need to worry about damaged clothing or walls when children work with washable markers.

Markers.
Markers.

Cleaning

Clean washable marker off skin or clothing by washing with soap and water. Remove washable marker off walls by gently wiping with a damp sponge.

Remove marker from skin with soap and water.
Remove marker from skin with soap and water.

Safety

According to the Material Safety Data Sheet (MSDS), Crayola Washable Markers are safe for inhalation and skin contact. Eye contact is relatively safe; however, flush eyes with water until no trace of chemicals remain. Contact your local poison control center if your child ingestion occurs.

Washable markers are safe for children.
Washable markers are safe for children.

Tip

Dried out washable marker tips may be revived by dipping the felt tip into water until a bit of the color leaks out. Recap and leave the marker undisturbed for about 15 minutes.

Dip dried-out tips in water.
Dip dried-out tips in water.

References

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