dry erase markers

Guide To Dry Erase Markers: How To Use & More

Dry erase markers are one of the unsung heroes of the classroom or boardroom. With just a flick of your wrist, they can transform your ordinary whiteboard into a canvas for creativity and effective communication.

But mastering these markers is more than just using them for writing or doodles. There are subtle nuances to using them that can help you change your whiteboard experience from drab to fab.

In this guide to dry erase markers, we'll teach you exactly how to use your markers to get the most out of them. We'll also explore how to pick the perfect marker type to suit your preferences and whiteboard needs.

How To Use Dry Erase Markers

Dry erase markers are like magic wands for brainstorming sessions, office meetings, and teaching in classrooms. In fact, they can bring your ideas to life when you're using them on your whiteboard, making your presentation more exciting, memorable, and engaging.

If you want to use these handy little tools like a pro, then you're going to want to check out our tips and tricks below:

Preparing the writing surface

Before you start using your dry erase markers, you must make sure that your writing surface is clean and dry. This includes erasing any previous writing or leftover markings on your dry erase board.

If you skip this step, it may lead to ghosting, which is where your writing bleeds into the whiteboard itself and leaves marks that are near impossible (and in some cases completely impossible) to remove. Plus, cleaning your whiteboard can help to prolong its life and make your new writing easier to read.

Writing techniques

When you're using your dry erase marker, hold the marker body with a comfortable grip and keep consistent pressure as you write.

Dry erase markers work like any other markers, so placing too much pressure on the tip of the marker can result in an excessive ink flow. In turn, this will cause wet spots or smudging on your board. It can also make the whiteboard marker more difficult to erase when you're done.

If you want to create different weights or styles of writing, all you need to do is change the angle or pressure of the marker accordingly.

Erasing and correcting mistakes

While dry erase markers may look similar to permanent markers, they're designed specifically to be erased. And, when you're using them on non-porous surfaces like whiteboards and glass, the ink can be wiped away with ease.

To remove your markings, you can simply use a dry cloth or a dry eraser. If there are any stubborn marks that can't be removed with a dry cloth, then you can use a whiteboard cleaner to remove them. If this is the case, then you could also use a damp cloth, since you're likely using wet-erase markers without realizing it.

Plus, if you make a mistake, don't worry! A dry erase marker allows you to correct mistakes quickly and easily by simply wiping the markings away and starting again.

Tips for making your markers last longer

To help you extend the life of your dry erase markers, you should store them properly when they're not in use. Ideally, they should be stored horizontally with their caps tightly closed to prevent them from drying out.

If you're using a magnetic whiteboard and your dry erase marker also has a magnet in the cap, you can store them directly on your board. Just remember to keep them on their side and not with their tip facing upwards.

Choosing The Right Dry Erase Marker

Are you ready to up your whiteboard game? Picking the perfect dry erase markers is the first step to unleashing your creativity and boosting how effective your presentations are.

The following factors are important to consider when you're buying the perfect dry erase markers:

Tip material and shape

The marker tip usually determines the line width and precision of your writing. Ultimately the choice rests on you - do you need a fine tip for detailed work or a broader tip for bold statements? Either way, it's important to pick the one that best suits your needs and that can be easily seen.

Typically, dry erase markers come in the following tip styles:

  • Chisel tips

  • A bullet tip

  • Fine point tip markers

Ink quality

Next, you'll need to assess the quality of the ink. This can affect how vibrant your writing is, and how smoothly it flows onto your writing surface. If your ink is too wet, it may take longer to dry and be prone to smudging. If it's too dry, the colors may fade easily and you may erase it accidentally by brushing your hand over what you've written.

The best markers are those with highly pigmented ink (that way they can be seen easily) and that also dries quickly to prevent smudging.


This factor is kind of a big deal. After all, if you can't erase your markers properly, then they're not going to work well with your whiteboard. Instead, they may leave ghosting or residual coloring on your writing surface.

So, try to choose markers that are easy to erase and that are made for dry-erase boards. Don't use permanent markers or any other kind of marker on your boards, either. Otherwise, you may never be able to erase them!


What are the three components of a dry erase marker?

A dry erase marker typically has three main components:

  • Ink reservoir: This is where the ink is stored. It will usually contain a special solvent-based ink to help it stick to the surface of whiteboards.

  • Marker tip: The tip of the marker is responsible for transferring ink from the reservoir onto the dry-erase board. They also come in different styles, shapes, colors, and sizes to suit your preferences when you're using your whiteboard.

  • Barrel: The barrel or body of the marker is the outer casing, which provides housing for the ink reservoir and the tip. It usually includes features like a cap to prevent the ink from drying out and a clip for easy attachment to your whiteboard.

What is the difference between dry erase and whiteboard markers?

Dry erase and whiteboard markers are essentially the same thing. These terms are often used interchangeably, but a whiteboard marker can usually also be used on other non-porous surfaces.

Dry erase markers can only be used on dry erase boards. This means that whiteboard markers actually refer to a broader category of markers, with dry erase markers falling under this category.

Is there a way to rehydrate dry erase markers?

Absolutely! There are a few ways to try and revive a dried-out marker. Firstly, you can store it with the tip facing downward. This allows gravity to pull the remaining ink into the tip. Just remember to keep the lid tightly closed to avoid unwanted messes!

You can also try moistening the tip of a dry marker with a damp cloth or a small amount of water. This can sometimes revive your marker temporarily, but it's not a long-term solution.

Final Thoughts

Dry erase markers aren't just tools - they're a way to communicate, educate, and engage with an audience. Whether that's a room full of CEOs or a group of five-year-olds, the marker you're using is going to make a huge difference.

Luckily, now you know how to pick the perfect tool and let your creativity flow freely through the medium of dry erase markers.