How To Use Posca Pens – 14 Tips And Tricks!

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The popularity of Posca pens has exploded over the last few years as more and more people have taken to use them for a wide range of different tasks ranging from customising clothing to painting glass to customising surfboards. Due to the wide range of versatility that the pens offer we constantly see a huge range of different questions being asked over and over again.

With so many people asking questions as well as the popularity of the Posca pen range showing no signs of slowing down anytime soon, we have decided to publish this article on how to use Posca pens. Our hope is that we will be able to help our readers who use Posca pens get the most out of the product and help you get the best possible end results from your arts and crafts as possible.

Due to answering fourteen different questions related to Posca pens in this article, we also wanted to add our table of contents below. This allows you to quickly and easily click and of the individual questions to be taken directly to it rather than have to skim over the whole article and waste time if you only need help with a single problem.

Where Can I Find Cheap Posca Pens?

Although it was difficult to find Posca pens outside of Japan a few years back, more and more people are importing them to North America and Europe making it much easier to get cheap Posca pens online. Just like most things that become popular, more and more people have started to import them resulting in prices falling helping you to get the best deal possible when purchasing your Posca pens.

Although some local stationery and arts and crafts stores do carry Posca pens these days, they are usually at their regular listed price. If you are on a tight budget and price is a major factor then having a quick search on Amazon is always going to offer you the best chance of getting your Posca pens as cheap as possible.

We would always recommend that you do purchase your Posca pens via Amazon, your local stationary store or from a branded high street stores website such as Walmart. We have lost count of the number of people purchasing fake Posca pens on eBay only to have their money wasted so try to avoid eBay as best as possible.

Are Posca Pens Worth The Money?

In our opinion, Posca pens are worth every cent and judging by how fast they are dominating the paint marker market, it would seem that the arts and crafts community agree with use. As we touched on above, you are able to get your Posca pens cheap online helping to keep their costs down.

That said though, even if you do purchase your Posca markers from your local arts and crafts store and pay their regular retail price tag then they are still worth every cent. They offer excellent performance as well as a ton of versatility with the markers being able to work on a huge range of surfaces without issue. This is why the reputation of the Posca pen range is second to none and all of the competing paint marker products are struggling to compete.

Can You Buy Individual Posca Pens?

Although it is easy to purchase individual Posca pens in Japan due to the markers being made their, in North America and Europe, it can be harder as most stores will only sell them in the multipacks that they are able to import. Thankfully, some online vendors do now offer individual Posca pens of any color for a low price.

If you only need a single marker or your more frequently used colors from your multipack are running out then that vendor is a great way to pick up individual Posca pens without having to purchase a brand new multipack. They have a great reputation with a ton of positive feedback too making us confident that the Posca pens that they are selling are real and worth the money.

How Do I Get My Posca Pen To Work?

Due to the excellent design and build quality of Posca pens, they do usually tend to work very well but every so often they can have issues with ink or paint transference to the nib. This does tend to be more common if you have not used your Posca pens for an extended period of time but thankfully, it is usually very simple and easy to fix.

The vast majority of the time, you simply have to go through the initial activation process covered above a few times to stimulate the paint/ink depending on the pen type you have to get it into the nib. We usually recommend that you spend a minute or two just shaking your pen for ten seconds and then dabbing it on some spare paper ten times and then repeating the process to see if this can get your Posca pen working again.

If you have gone through the process above for around two minutes and your Posca pen is still not working correctly have a quick check of the nib. Although rare, the nibs can dry out completely after the initial activation so try to see if you can see fresh, wet paint working its way out of the barrel of the pen. If you can then repeated the process above of shaking and dabbing until the whole nib is wet and the pen is working.

If this does not work then your Posca pen may be out of ink or may be damaged in some way and purchasing a new individual pen may be the best option. As we mentioned earlier in the article, over the years, the prices of Posca pens has fallen and with vendors being willing to sell individual marker pens, it is much cheaper to replace a pen than it once was.

What Size Posca Pen Should I Get?

The PC-3M Fine point is the most popular Posca pen size but the best Posca pen size for you will depend on your own requirements and needs. We usually recommend that our readers try to pick up a variety pack of Posca pens that offer all four sizes in one pack for you to try if you are new to using them as they can handle a little different to some other popular markers.

At the the time of writing, the Posca marker pen range is available in the following sizes:-

Do Posca Pens Last Long?

Posca pen ink can be permanent on some materials where as they tend to be washable on others. Due to there being a number of variables involved in how long your Posca pen ink will last, we would just recommend that you check out our article going over the permanent properties of Posca pens.

We also see some people asking how long Posca pens last in regards to how long it will take for their ink to run dry. Unfortunately, there is no one size fits all answer for this as different people will use their markers at different rates to each other. The average person can usually expect their more commonly used Posca pens to last them anywhere from four to six weeks with regular use. If you are a professional artists using your markers on a daily basis then they may last you considerably less due to extensive use.

How Do You Use Posca Pens For The First Time?

Although some Posca pens will worth right out the pack when uncapped, most people will have to shake their pens, then dap the nib a few times to help get the pen working correctly without skipping. Thankfully, the process is very easy, fast, and explained on the side of the barrel of your pen helping you get your Posca pens working as fast as possible.

The majority of people will be able to shake their brand new Posca pen for around ten seconds and then dab the marker on some spare paper ten times and get it working. That said though, the new style Posca pens (the ones with English and Spanish instructions on the barrels) are coming into circulation that have better protection for the paint when being shipped from Japan.

If you do have one of the newer Posca pens with English and Spanish instructions on the barrel rather than Japanese instructions then you may have to repeat the process two or three times to get the ink flowing correctly. Although this may sound like a pain, it is actually beneficial to you as it helps prevent the oxidisation of the paint in the pen during transit and while in storage prior to sale ensuring that your pen will last as long as possible when you take it out of the package.

How Long Do You Have To Shake A Posca Pen?

We usually only recommend that our readers shake their Posca pens for a maximum of 10 seconds while having the cap of the pen on. When shaking the pen you should also be able to hear the mixing balls rattling around in the barrel of the pen to help confirm that the insides of the pen are working correctly and are not damaged.

Once you have shaken the pen for ten seconds, dab it on some spare paper ten times rather than shaking it for longer. Both parts of the process are essential to get your Posca pens working correctly so there is no point in shaking your marker for a minute without dabbing it as it will do little to nothing.

How Do You Revive A Posca Pen?

Shaking the pen for ten seconds and then dabbing it on some spare paper ten times and repeating the process for up to two minutes or until the pen starts to work is usually the best way to revive a Posca pen. That said though, as we touched on earlier in the article, if the nib of your pen had dried out then you may have to repeat the process for considerably longer than two minutes before the pigment is able to work its way to the end of the nib.

Can You Refill A Posca Pen?

No, the official Posca pen range can’t be refilled once empty. Although there were some markers available online branded as Posca pens that claimed to be refillable, it is presumed that these were fakes as Uni have confirmed that their official Posca pens can’t be refilled.

We often see people make the mistake of thinking that their Posca pens need to be refilled when they don’t, they just need to be revived. If you do think that your Posca pen is out of ink then go over this process explained earlier in the article to see if you are able to revive your pen and get it working again.

How Do You Burp Posca Pens?

To burp your Posca pens press them against some spare paper as if you are going to dab them but keep them pressed to the paper rather than releasing the pressure. Hold them in this position for up to five seconds to allow any built up air to be released from the pen. Depending on the amount of air that has build up in the barrel of the pen, you may hear a slight hiss as the air escapes your Posca pen while being burped.

Although some people shake their Posca pens for ten seconds and then repeat the above process of holding the maker against some spare paper with the nib depressed for another five seconds, it is usually not required. That said though, it doesn’t harm your markers so you can do it again if needed and you are not in a rush.

Why Is My Posca Pen Watery?

A watery Posca pen is usually due to the pigment and medium separating within the barrel of the pen. Thankfully, shaking the pen for up to ten seconds is usually enough to fix the issue as the mixing balls will force the pigment and medium in the barrel of the pen to mix again and get the pen working correctly.

As the nib is still transferring correctly, there is no need to dab the pen as with the previous fixes mentioned in the article but you may have to draw some figure eights on some spare paper for a few minutes until the watery mixture has been worked out of the nib. One the regular mixture of the pigment and the medium gets to the end of your Posca pens nib it should not be watery anymore when used.

Are Posca Pens Blendable?

Posca pens are blendable but it will depend on the surface that you are using them on. You blend the markers as you would with any other but the look of the markers when used on a porous vs non-porous surface is totally different. Due to this, we always recommend that our readers have a little practise run at blending their posca pens on a spare piece of material to see how it will perform prior to trying to blend their pens on their main artwork.

Can You Use Posca Pens On Your Nails?

Although many people have experimented with Posca pens for nail art, a decent, cheap nail pen will almost always offer better performance, especially for long term nail art. If you already have some Posca pens in your arts and crafts collection then you can try them out but we would not recommend that you purchase them just for nail art as nail art pens are usually a similar price tag.


That brings our article going over how to use your Posca pens for optimal performance to a close. We hope that this article has helped our readers get the most out of their pens to enhance the end effect of your arts and crafts when using your Posca pens. Although there are a few alternative paint pen markers on the market these days, Posca pens are still the better option in our opinion by far and we doubt anyone will be able to know them off the top spot anytime soon.