Marco Renoir Colored Pencils

marco renoir colored pencils review

Visual Appeal
Overall Ranking

Marco Renoir Colored Pencils

24-100 count pack

oil core

round barrel



Happy Medium Between Hard and Soft

Great Red and Yellows


Beautiful Packaging


Somewhat Limited in Other Colors

A Little Difficult to Lay Down Light Layers

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Marco Renoir Pencils Review

The Marco Renoir colored pencils are a cousin to the somewhat popular Marco Raffine Colored pencils, with the primary difference being that they are oil-based rather than wax-based.  However, leaving it at that does them a disservice as the performance is much different as well as having a differing price point.  They come with a 3.7mm core, have a round barrel, and come in 24, 48, 72, and 100 count sets.

Visual Appeal – 4/5

Overall, the 48-count set that we got our hands on performed quite well.  The color output was plenty intense, particularly in the lighter colors, but was still responsive enough to allow for lighter strokes where you wish to subdue the color some.  Being an oil core, you get to enjoy a bit more sophisticated levels of blending which definitely opens up the color palette a bit more and allows for some really cool effects.  You won’t get quite the “jump out of the page” color you do with, say, a set of Holbeins, but it is plenty fine for most people’s needs (and at a fraction of the cost).  In the set we checked out there seemed to be a much higher percentage of yellows, reds, and oranges compared to the other colors.  Coincidentally, these seemed to be the best performing of the colors offered.  Coincidence?  We’ll let you be the judge of that!  We assume that the larger sets would give you a wider range of color choices but with acceptable blending, you can still find most colors you are looking for with what is available in this set.

Usability and Durability – 4/5

These colored pencils find a happy medium between being soft and hard, making them a good all-around pencil for both the beginner and the novice.  They are soft enough to allow for buttery application and relatively easy blending, but hard enough to allow them to be sharpened to an acceptable point and also be able to handle highly detailed areas.  Our only minor complaint is that extremely light application color may come off almost too light and in the process of trying to darken it is easy to go too much in the other direction and produce more color than you would like.  However, after some practice, we got the hang of using these well enough.  The cores are average if slightly below average in thickness which makes them great for those with petite hands.

Packaging and Presentation – 4.5/5

Similar to the other Marco Renoir products we have tried out, the packing is very elegant and gives off the feel of being a premium product.  The pencils come in an attractive tin case that not only looks the part but also provide adequate protection.  The trays they come in are a bit flimsy, being made of cheap plastic, but at this price point, we can’t complain too much.  The pencils themselves come in a lightly finished upper barrel with the color-matching lower barrel and are divided by a red line.  The brand name and color code are printed on the bottom in silver leaf.  Overall, it is a very attractive look that rivals any pencils in the industry.

Cost – 4/5

These colored pencils fall into the mid-priced category.  This makes them higher than the non-oil-based Marco Raffine Colored pencils but this is pretty typical of oil-based pencils as we assume production costs are higher.

Overall Ranking – 4/5

The Marco Renoir colored pencils really hit a nice point in being an adequate “jack of all trades” pencil.  The core is not too hard nor too soft which allows it to be viable in just about anybody’s hand.  The blending, while not class-leading, is plenty good thanks to the oil core and the color output, particularly in the reds and yellows, is very nice.  Our particular set was a bit lacking in other colors but this is likely corrected in larger sets.  A very simple pencil to use, it can be a great addition to most beginner to intermediate artists’ art collections.

*We received a sample set of Marco Renoir Colored Pencils for our honest and un-biased review.  All of the thoughts and opinions on these pencils are unsolicited and completely from the writers at