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Can You Use Chalk Markers on Shrinky Dinks?

Chalk markers are a lot of fun to draw with! They’re perfect for creating exciting designs and come in bright colors. However, they might not be suitable for all types of art projects.

So, can you use chalk markers on Shrinky Dinks? You can only use some chalk markers on shrink plastic. Oil and alcohol-based chalk markers tend to work very well as they dry quickly and remain vibrant after baking. Water-based chalk markers never dry, so that the colors might run and bleed in the oven.

You’ll want to ensure the chalk markers you choose will work well on your plastic sheets. We’ve included all the critical steps for using these markers in this post, so let’s get started!

How To Use Chalk Markers on Shrink Dinks

First, you’ll want to check the markers you have. If you want them to work well and stick to the plastic sheets, you should choose oil or alcohol-based chalk markers. The water-based ones won’t stick nearly as well to the plastic, which causes problems and can be messy.

Once you’ve done that, you’re ready to follow these steps to make your shrink-plastic creations:

  1. Lightly buff the shrink paper with a piece of fine sandpaper to prepare the surface for the markers. You can also use the scratchier side of the plastic that comes in Shrinky Dink kits.
  2. Draw your design on your buffed plastic sheet using a pencil.
  3. Fill in your design using the chalk markers. It should feel like using a Sharpie.
  4. Before touching the plastic, wait a few minutes for the marker pigment to dry.
  5. Carefully cut out your designs using a pair of sharp craft scissors. You may want to leave some additional space around your design. You can also leave a hole for a keychain at this stage.
  6. Place the plastic cutouts on your baking sheet without them touching. Then, bake them using the instructions given in your shrink-plastic kit.

Overall, using chalk markers for this project is very similar to using Sharpies or other markers. Although, you will want to ensure that the chalk liquid dried completely before attempting to cut and bake your shrinkles. They should dry fast, but you risk smearing them if you’re not patient.

Check out my other article that talks all about using Sharpies on your Shrinky Dinks.

What Kind of Markers Can You Use on Shrinky Dinks?

There are many different types of markers you can use on Shrinky Dinks. But, the best markers tend to be acrylic paint pens or Sharpies. Sharpies are the best for this project— they’ll always give you the brightest, most vibrant colors that look great even after shrinking.

These markers also work best on standard Shrinky Dink paper. The Inkjet sheets are too smooth and won’t hold the marker pigment nearly as well. 

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Washable markers aren’t going to stick well to the sheets, whether or not you use Inkjet plastic, so you’ll want to avoid them.

In short, you’ll want to choose a quality set of Sharpies to make your best cutout designs! There are plenty of different options to pick from with this brand. Plus, you’ll get vibrant results every time. Sharpies use ink-based pigments, so many other ink-based markers also work well for shrinkles.

Can I Use Crayola Markers on Shrinky Dinks?

Crayola markers are washable, which makes them a poor choice for Shrinky Dinks. The pigment will rub off the plastic easily, no matter how long you wait for the marker to dry. It might also melt in the oven, causing the color to bleed.

So, you shouldn’t use Crayola markers for this project. Instead, you’ll want to choose a marker that isn’t soluble in water. For instance, an ink-based pigment, like the ones you find in Sharpies, would give you much better results. 

If you’re unsure of the marker you’re using, you can always create a test design first. Simply make the design and bake it as you would normally. You can make more shrink-plastic designs if the test turns out well.

If it failed, you could always try using a different marker. Most people prefer using different markers for this craft, so you might have to experiment until you discover the marker brand you like the best. Ultimately, Crayola markers won’t work well on shrink-plastic. You’ll want to choose something else.

Can You Use Alcohol Based Markers on Shrinky Dinks?

Alcohol-based markers work exceptionally well on shrink plastics. The pigment dries rapidly, so it shouldn’t smear on the plastic.

These markers work best on non-porous surfaces, which is why you can use them on plastic effectively. You can apply a marker layer, wait for it to dry, then add another. This method works well for creating rich colors on your plastic cutouts; you can use it to make colors you don’t have the markers for.

So, you can use alcohol-based markers on your Shrinky Dinks! You can also get great results from them, making them another excellent choice, along with ink-based markers like Sharpies.

Can You Use Highlighters on Shrinky Dinks?

Most highlighters use water-based materials so the pigment doesn’t seep through the paper. However, that also means that most highlighters are washable. So, they won’t work very well for the same reasons the Crayola markers don’t work. The plastic is too glossy for the ink to set.

The highlighters won’t dry on the plastic, leading to smearing and bleeding colors. If you get the color to stick to your shrinkles, it’s not likely to be very vibrant.

However, you can find other markers that use neon, highlighter-like colors to get similar results in your designs. Many Sharpies and chalk markers have bright pigments, so you’ll have plenty of fun colors to choose from.

Final Thoughts

To summarize, some chalk markers work just fine on Shrinky Dinks. Although, you’ll need to check that you’re not using a washable chalk marker. Water-based markers are washable and won’t stick well to the shrink plastic. Instead, look for ink or alcohol-based markers.

These types of chalk markers dry quickly, and their pigments remain colorful and bright even after baking and shrinking, making them perfect for this craft.

Make sure to follow all my tips and recommended products to ensure your Shrinky Dink project turns out great! Also, don’t forget to check out my other articles for all your painting Q&A’s. Happy painting!