I tested the set of 72 Ohuhu makers that I recently purchased so that I could create this Ohuhu alcohol markers review. It’s time to share my findings with you!
I have many sets of alcohol markers, including the famous Copic brand. However, I wanted to see how Ohuhu compares, especially since the price point is light years lower than Copics. For instance, they’re nearly 10 times lower, in fact!!
What I Tested from Ohuhu
The set included 72 round barrel alcohol markers that have a brush on one end and a chisel on the opposite end.
Each end is clearly labeled with a name and number according to what color family it belongs to.
- A soft sturdy zippered case
- Two small cards on sturdy stock paper with labeled blanks to create your own color chart
- A silicon/plastic protector sheet
- One colorless ‘blender’ pen
- Pamphlet with a printed color chart
Not included in the set is the Ohuhu Marker Paper Pad. I also bought that, as I figured paper created specifically for the same brand of markers would work the very best. As you will read, I was not disappointed!
What Is Ohuhu?
Ohuhu is a Chinese manufactured brand of many different art products, all highly respected. They’re famous for making quality affordable art products. In addition to their Honolulu Alcohol Series, they also offer:
- Oahu Series with a Chisel Point and a Fine Point in sets of 40, 60, 80, 100, 120, 160 or 200
- Honolulu Series with a Chisel and Brush in sets of 24, 48, 72 and 120
The Ohuhu markers are somewhat unique in that their brush tips are reversible. Therefore, when one end gets frayed from a ton of use, just pull it out and flip it around. After that, if the ink doesn’t get all used up before the nibs wear out, that’s quite a cost savings!
My Experience With Ohuhu Alcohol Markers
Box Opening and Customer Service
My initial product opening was great. I filled out the color swatch sheets and was dismayed to see that I had received a duplicate marker and I was missing one individual color. It’s a good idea to make your own color swatch charts to check if you received all the markers in the set, no matter what brand you buy!
Many manufacturers will not respond to your requests to fill in any missing markers, or replace any if they arrive dry or with low ink content! However, I figured it was worth a shot to contact customer support though.
So I emailed customer support and got a prompt response! After screen-sharing a receipt from Amazon to prove my purchase, they sent me the replacement a few days later along with an email asking if I was satisfied! Certainly that level of customer service is rare today.
In my color swatches, I did one swipe with the marker, then did multiple swipes on the left side of each box to show different darknesses of each marker. This gives me a better idea of what the set is capable of.
I am super happy with the color selections. Many other alcohol marker sets have a large amount of super dark, vibrant colors. Which is fine for single color application and very bright colors, but it’s useless for blending for 3D effects. Blending is the only way I like to color and create!
There is a way to thin out your color involving using isopropyl alcohol, a palette, and a paintbrush, but frankly, one of the purposes for alcohol markers is the SPEED of using them. Having to stop, dilute and monkey with the mess defeats the purpose for me.
This set has an unusually large amount of pastels colors for nice gradated color blending and keeps me creating fast.
Nibs and Tips
The brush tip is semi-soft and the chisel as hard. I much prefer a semi-soft brush for using my markers. The chisel end is quite limiting and the bullet tip is even more limiting. However, a chisel end controls how much ink is released better than the brush end, so it keeps my budget happy. It is also useful for uniform stripes for a graphic look.
Barrels are notched on each end so that they don’t roll around the table when laid on their sides.
I like that the round barrels are not too large or too small. My preference is for an oblong or rectangle-shaped barrel, however, for a round barrel, these are comfortable to hold.
The caps are easy on/off and snap-tight easily. I found the colors of the caps only slightly match the true color of the inks. Therefore, it is harder to identify the color you want unless you read the number and color names.
I always refer to the color chart I made to select the perfect color. It’s not unusual for most marker brands to slightly inaccurate barrel color caps. Probably it’s very hard to color plastic accurately with minute changes, like what the pen inks have.
The bag is of adequate quality and durability, but keeping the pens organized into color families will be difficult. I find it much easier to use my color chart, pre-select the pens that I intend to use and lay them out on the table in a handy location, rather than rely on a fool-proof storage organization system.
The deluxe Copic brand really knows how to store their markers and label them in a very useful way. I must admit to being in love with their plastic compartmented storage containers.
For this price point though, I’ll happily sort through my pens and organize them for project use! The Ohuhu’s are much more reasonably priced!!
There are not a ton of flesh colors, so if you intend to color lots of manga or people, you’ll want to invest in a set of flesh tones. This set for flesh tones is great because they are still brush-tipped, not nibs. The price is approximately $1 per marker!
I was pleasantly surprised by how well the Ohuhu Brush Alcohol Markers performed. Most alcohol markers work the same way: for example, lay on the palest color, then move to add the next darker color and blend the edges for a smooth blend. Ohuhu Markers work exactly as expected. The color payout is outstanding.
All alcohol markers will soak through the back of even the heaviest cardstock. Most markers behave exactly the same. The trick is to find the right paper that won’t allow the inks to puddle in the back and ruin other surfaces.
I was pleasantly surprised with how effective the Ohuhu Marker Paper was AND how deluxe the protector sheet was.
The protector sheet in the listing was a welcome surprise! Once the pad is full, I’ll use the sheet to protect lots of other projects! Wahoo!
The Ohuhu Marker Pad is ever so slightly textured so that it isn’t TOO smooth. Sometimes this contributes to a slight mottling with dark colors applied heavily. Compared to other papers though, the mottling is minimal or non-existent.
The cover front and back is thick cardboard so that the pages are well protected from bending.
It has perforated edges for easy removal with a spiral wire binding. Initial pencil sketches erased easily with no smearing.
It is a good idea to protect your rear end, so to speak, by using a blank sheet of paper behind your work OR a silicone sheet protector or some other non-porous sheet. I’ve used a clear piece of kitchen wrap in a pinch, as well as a plain piece of paper.
The problem with a plain piece of paper is that it is porous, and absorbent. It will draw the ink down into itself and contribute to your pens drying out prematurely. If you are a penny pincher like myself, use something non-porous!
Alcohol markers perform the best on paper manufactured specifically for alcohol markers. The right absorption for the ink with a coated back to prevent soaking through is a perfect recipe.
It is surprising to note that soak through and bleed through are two different things. Soak-through will always happen. Bleedthrough means the ink from the marker is super wet on the back and will taint whatever it touches.
That’s why markers don’t work in adult coloring books unless each page is only printed on one side. There is no way it will work to have a double-sided page.
I also tried the markers on several other brands of alcohol maker paper.
By far, my favorite was Bee Marker Paper. The colors were bright and crisp and I had zero mottling!
They also excelled on Canson Marker XL Paper, though the 72 lb weight is a challenge to keep from wrinkling! Thinner paper is so useful for tracing though!
Here are three samples I created:
Country Landscape Front
I will get the most use of my alcohol markers doing quick landscape sketches like this one. Very portable and zero mess, they make the perfect field sketching medium. Traveling well on an airplane, I experienced zero leakage and they added almost no weight to my luggage.
Country Landscape Backside
You can see the amount of soak through…it’s barely any at all.
White Flower Front
Alcohol markers are really problematic when trying to evenly color very large areas with the same color. I didn’t mind the overlapping strokes to give a striated effect in the background.
If I wanted a perfectly even background I would have opted to use a pan pastel and rub the pigment into the paper for a flawless matte color spread in the pale blue-green background like this one.
Keep in mind pan pastels require special foam applicators for the best results.
Another option would have been to keep adding layers of the same aqua color and swirl-blend the marker until the background was less streaky. BUT, that would use a ton of ink, and for me, it wasn’t worth the lost ink to get the solid background. Zoom in and see the subtle colors in the petals!
White Flower Backside
I wanted to test how well they performed with a black outline pen line. In this case, I used black waterproof micron pens size 0.4 and freehanded the flowers, stems and leaves. I just improvised the shadows and wall texture after I was done with the flowers using a warm grey and a very pale yellow-grey.
The black ink didn’t smear at all when the Ohuhu Alcohol marker came in contact with it.
Fuchsia Flower Backside
The flower petals were heavily saturated on the front, needing lots and lots of blending. Even with that level of deep soak, the bleed-through was controlled on the backside of the paper and well contained! I’m impressed!
I really enjoyed working with this set. The color selection is especially well suited to my style of work. The quality is quite good for this price point and I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend Ohuhu Brand Alcohol Markers if you are considering getting into the medium!
The only advantage of the famous Copic brand is the refillable ink capability and the interchangeable nibs.
For a professional illustrator who uses one or two colors often enough to need frequent replacements, buying one expensive pen and refilling it often makes financial sense. Conversely, the other option is to buy an entirely new set of 72 cheaper markers just to get one or two new pens. My best advice is to buy a budget brand like Ohuhu and one or two pens from Copic that you know you will use daily.
If you are working with alcohol markers all day, the comfort of the small oval barrels, long-living nibs and versatility of Copic can’t be beat. But only, if you have the big bucks to invest.
Other than those details, I found the Ohuhu performed equally well! Professional quality at an attractive budget-friendly price!
Ohuhu Alcohol Markers are an ideal set for someone starting out with alcohol markers as well as serious artists who use markers occasionally and won’t need refillable barrels. At this price, I would advise buying the 72 or bigger set.
Tutorials and Inspirations
Using Alcohol markers under colored pencils: