Best Paint Pens and Markers for Wood | Write without Bleeding

You can see it all over social media: paint pens and art markers that can write, draw, and paint on wood.

However, not every marker or paint pen will result in the same vibrant and long-lasting colors, so it’s important that you choose the right one.

Regardless if you are looking to do indoor or outdoor crafts, in this article we will go over the best pens for writing on wood.

Best paint markers for wood

1. Uni-Posca Paint Marker

The paint markers by Uni-Posca are my favorite paint pens for wood. When drawing on paper I prefer Copic markers, but Uni-Posca markers are the way to go for any other kind of surface, including wood.

These markers are non-toxic, waterproof, and have a vibrant color. They also have a relatively smooth tip, which makes it easier to write on textured surfaces like wood.

Since the ink dries quickly you won’t have to worry about smudging or smearing. Moreover, the marker releases the ink evenly which makes it easy to make smooth lines even on an uneven surface.

The only real downside of these markers is that they aren’t available in a lot of colors. Any of the primary or basic colors should be fine, but if you want something like mint blue you are out of luck.


  • Non-toxic
  • Safe for children
  • Permanent
  • Works on many surfaces


  • Needs a good shake before use
  • Limited number of colors

2. Molotow ONE4ALL Acrylic Paint Markers

Unlike most paint pens for wood, these markers by Molotow use acrylic paint which results in very vivid colors. Moreover, the ink is resistant to UV and harsh weather conditions, so the colors won’t dull over time.

These markers can also be used on many other materials besides wood such as paper, glass, canvas and rocks.

One big benefit that these markers have is that you can refill them when they are empty. So if you are planning to use your markers a lot, this would be a good choice.

The markers can be used with minimal shaking and the ink dries fast enough to prevent smudging.


  • Refillable
  • Lightfast ink
  • Works on many surfaces


  • Expensive

3. Sharpie Oil-Based Paint Markers

The first oil-based markers on this list are by Sharpie. This well-known brand of pens and pencils also has good markers to write on wood.

The ink dries quickly and lasts a long time on wood. Of course, besides wood it can also be used on surfaces such as glass, wood, metal, etc.

The ink flow is very consistent and the marker are easy to use. The colors also looked great, but unfortunately there weren’t many colors to choose from.

The biggest downside is that these markers are pretty delicate. The marker quickly dries up if you leave the cap off for too long, and the nibs easily deform when you press too hard or store them in the wrong position.


  • Non-toxic
  • Waterproof
  • Works on many surfaces


  • Limited number of colors
  • Easy to Break

4. Elmer’s Painters Opaque Paint Markers

These water-based markers by Elmer are somewhat of a budget option compared with the other water-based paint pens on this list.

They can be used for various DIY projects and work on multiple surfaces such as wood, glass, stones, etc.

The ink contains a lot of pigment, which means you can get the colors you want with only a single layer.

These markers are easy to use and a great option for anyone that want to write on wooden plaques for the first time. You also can buy them with either a fine or medium nib, depending on your preference.

For the best result you want to make sure that you are working on a relatively smooth surface. So you will have to either sand the wood or carefully choose a plaque without too much texture.


  • Non-toxic
  • Safe for children
  • Different nibs available


  • Works best on smooth surfaces

5. Sakura Pen-Touch Paint Markers

Sakura markers might not directly ring a bell to you, but Sakura is one of the mayor manufacturers of markers in Japan. Their markers produce very vivid colors and give a good coverage even on wood.

These paint pens are mainly designed for lettering and writing. As a result, you can choose from various nibs ranging from small to medium size.

One pro of these markers is that they come in some colors that you can’t find with the other brands such as gold, silver, and copper.


  • Range of colors
  • Durable


  • No big nibs

Comparing Paint Pens For Wood

ImageName# Of PensInkPrice
Uni-Posca markers
10Water-basedCheck on Amazon
Molotow One4All markers10Acrylic-basedCheck on Amazon
Sharpie Oil markers5Oil-basedCheck on Amazon
Elmer’s Opaque markers5Acrylic-basedCheck on Amazon
Sakura Pen marker3Oil-basedCheck on Amazon

Buyer’s Guide

From the 5 paint pens for wood listed above I would go with Uni-Posca markers every single time. But depending on your preferences you might want to go with one of the other markers. Here are some things you want to keep in mind when choosing:


Most brands only sell paint pens for wood in a limited number of colors. So make sure that all the colors you need are included. Moreover, you want to make sure that the ink has enough pigment to produce vivid colors with just a single layer.


You don’t want your colors to slowly disappear over time. If you are placing your wooden plaques indoor, you want to make sure that the ink is lightfast and the colors don’t fade due to UV exposure.

If you want to place the decorated wood outside, you want to make sure the ink is both lightfast and waterproof, such that it can withstand the rain.

All-Surface Markers

Most people don’t write on wood very often. So it’s a good idea to buy markers or paint pens that work on both wood and various other materials such that you can use them for other DIY projects as well.

Note that some of the most popular art markers such as Copic markers, Uni Posca markers, and Prismacolor art markers aren’t suitable for writing on wood.

Nib size

Not every brand sells their paint markers in different sizes. But if they do, you want to make sure to consider which one to get. If you have big nibs it’s easier to paint or draw large surfaces, while fine nibs are better suited for drawing small details or writing.


Safety might not be the first thing that comes to mind when you think of markers. But it’s always important to make sure the markers you choose are non-toxic. Some paint markers that use phenol, ethyl glycol, or xylene can give of a distinctive smell that can be harmful, especially for younger kids. So make sure to go for the non-toxic version, such that both the paint markers and your creations are safe.

Frequently asked questions

Do sharpies work on wood?

To write on wood you need paint pens with the right ink. Thus, not every pen or marker by Sharpie can be used on wood. The Sharpie Oil markers can be used for writing or drawing on wood without any problem and produce vibrant and long-lasting colors.

How do you keep paint pens from bleeding on wood?

There are three ways to keep paint pens from bleeding on wood. First, you can try a paint pen with a different paint consistency. Secondly, you can try a different type of wood. Finally, you can apply a clear coat layer before using your markers.

How do you write words on wood?

To write on wood I recommend you first use a pencil to outline your design. After that you can a paint pen or marker to fill in the letters. Make sure that the paint pen or marker contains ink that can be used on wood.

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