copic sketch markers

Copic Ciao vs Classic review

For those of you who are familiar with Copic markers, you will know that they are high-quality alcohol-based markers that go at a fairly hefty price. However, it is still adored by artists and well worth the extra dough due to features such as its smooth application, smooth blending and high ink capacity. There are different types of markers, such as the Copic Ciaos, Copic Sketch and Copic Classic. The vibrant colors and the different types of nibs offer a fun and productive coloring session which satisfies even the most professional artists. 

Although there are many types of Copic markers, we will be focusing on the Copic Ciao and Copic Classic markers, comparing them side-by-side and letting you pick the one you prefer. We will go through aspects such as the chisel nib, bullet nib and brush nib. We will also talk about durability and value for money as well for each of these alcohol markers.

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Firstly, we’ll start off with the Copic Ciao, which is equipped with a chisel nib (or broad nib) and a brush nib. The chisel nib is perfect for those hard-edged lines and consistent strokes. It can create lines of different widths and makes the Copic Ciao a fairly versatile marker.

The Copic Ciao also features the renowned brush tip, which is one of the most popular type of nib in general. It is arguably the most versatile tip and with just a light touch allows you to create smooth strokes. It feels as if you are actually painting with a paintbrush, with tremendously easy application. 

Moving onto the Copic Classic markers, we can see that, similar to the Copic Ciao, it has a chisel tip as well. However, keep in mind that this chisel tip is slightly larger than that of the Ciao. Again, the chisel tip can be used for more structured lines and to fill in larger areas, or to create thin lines, similar to other Copic Markers like the Copic Sketch.

The Copic Classic also has a bullet nib, which is designed for creating smaller, more accurate strokes, much like a fine liner. So if you create mainly outlines or very detailed illustrations, then bullet tips are great for you. 

Range of colors

The Copic Original marker has 214 different color options to choose from, so it is far from limited! Remember that you can also blend colors together to create more complex colors. Therefore when starting out with Copic markers, try to buy the basic colors first, such as the primary colors, and any skin tones. You can then work your way up from there and add a greater variety of colors to your collection if you wish to do so. 

That is why the Copic Ciao is more suited to beginners, as there is a more limited color range with 180 different marker colors. However, this is still more than enough for most, and the color palette is interchangeable between the Classic and the Ciao. For example, a Y32 for the Ciao is the same color for the Copic Sketch or the Copic Classic. You can even buy empty Copic markers and fill them with your own custom color mixes. However, this is not needed for most people anyway.


In terms of how long they last, Copic markers are meant to last for many years. That’s because you can use replacement nibs when they’re worn out, and there are many refill inks available for you to top up on. The Copic Original marker has the largest barrel size, so holds the most ink. Compared to this, the Copic Ciao has the smallest barrel size, so lasts the shortest amount of time. For comparison, a 12ml Copic Ink Refill Bottle has enough ink to fill 5 Copic Classics and 9 Copic Ciaos.

One of the few downsides with any marker, let alone Copic markers, is that their colors are made of dyes, which means that it isn’t as fade-resistant as other media, such as pastels or paint. So artwork made by Copic markers will fade over time. To mitigate this effect, try storing your work in boxes, or add varnish to it. However, with the varnishing, you should test it first to make sure that there is no damage to the color. 


You can use these different marker types to your advantage, as well as using the nib shape for different purposes. For example, the Copic Classic is ideal for graphic designers or product design, where you create rough drafts and mockups. The bullet nib provides a clean, fine line that is great for designing items and products. Also, the large square barrel means that it is accessible, and doesn’t roll around everywhere on your desk. You can also use the marker for a long time, as the ink doesn’t run out quickly, so creating multiple sketches regularly becomes hassle-free. 

With the Copic Ciao, the marker is the perfect tool for beginners that are on a budget. However, it’s also created for artists in general, and the brush nib is a fantastic tool for adding life and character to your art. It feels smooth and comfortable when in use, and with the help of the chisel tip, you can create many different lines, whether rigid or flowing. You can even create calligraphic strokes with it. They still use the same quality alcohol-based ink, so will be on par with other professional artworks.


The main thing people see when buying any type of art equipment is the price. With Copics, people tend to shy away, as they feel that it may cost them too much in the long term. However, you need to start thinking about the benefits it will bring you. The amount of time that Copics last is far superior to other cheap markers, and the quality is unmatched in practically all aspects. You don’t need a huge color selection at all to create a beautiful artwork, as you can mix them to create any color you want. 

As a bonus, the Copic Ciao is significantly cheaper than the Classic, and they’re more beginner-friendly as well. So before diving right into the world of Copics, try out the Ciao markers first. In most cases, you don’t even need the Classics, as there are enough options available with the Ciao. The brush nib is one of the most sought after type of marker, which the Classic doesn’t have. If you feel like you need more precision, then the Classic may be the one for you.

However, if you really don’t want to spend your money on Copics, then the BLICK Studio Brush Markers are the way to go. You can buy them using the link below. The Copic Ciao and the Copic Classic markers will also be linked.

Blick Studio Brush Markers - Assorted Colors, Set of 48

BLICK Studio Brush Markers

Copic Ciao Double Ended Marker Set - Set E, Set of 36

COPIC Ciao Markers

Copic Original Marker - Basic Colors, Set of 12

COPIC Original/Classic Markers

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