Tip #4 You NEED to KNEAD your kneaded eraser

Everytime I teach a botanical art or natural science class I find that there is at least one student who pulls out a hard filthy dirty kneaded eraser. YUCK! This is what I call eraser abuse. A kneaded eraser can last for a long time if you take the proper care of it. Here are some hints to keep you and your kneaded eraser happy:

1. ALWAYS keep your kneaded eraser soft and pliable. This should be done immediately upon unwrapping it from the package. Think of it as pulling taffy. It can also replace worry beads…….

2. NEVER leave it dirty. Keep pulling it apart. The graphite will blend into the eraser and keep it clean.

3. NEVER use a kneaded eraser for multiple mediums…….. Have one for graphite, one for charcoal and one for colored pencil etc….. Mixing mediums shortens the life of your kneaded eraser.  🙁

4. ALWAYS keep your kneaded eraser in a separate compartment. This keeps it in a protective place and will keep it clean.

5. ALWAYS keep it away from your pets. There is something very appealing about the kneaded eraser and I often find it under the couch with the dust bunnies….. with little teeth marks on it.the dust bunnies completely ruin the eraser!

6. When your kneaded eraser no longer has elasticity and pulls apart too fast, is a dark dull grey……. it is time to put it to rest. Throw it out and get a new one. It has done a good job for you and should be able to retire.

If you follow these simple rules you will have success with your kneaded eraser!


Good luck!