Caran d’Ache Luminance Colored Pencils Review

Review Summary
5/5 Our Score
• Highest lightfast rating on the market
• Rich, intense pigment
• Sturdy, durable casing
• Blends and burnishes extremely well
• Wide color variety
• Very expensive

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At approximately $4 per pencil, this is not a price to take lightly, yet artists swear by this brand and these colored pencils. They are considered by many to be the best colored pencils and an investment worth every penny.
Color Intensity


Caran d’Ache makes master tools and their luminance colored pencils combine a smooth, creamy core with the permanence of an excellent lightfastness rating.

Comparable in application to Prismacolor’s Premier Soft Core Colored Pencils, this is a high-end pencil that produces truly phenomenal masterpieces, especially portraits.

A superior colored pencil described by fans as “the best colored pencil in the world”, the luminance colored pencils by Caran d’Ache come in sets of 16, 38, and 72 pencils.

While these are wax-based colored pencils, they are made with finely ground pigment that lays a rich, intense color that blends and burnishes with excellence. They are also the most lightfast pencils on the market, meant for true masterpieces.

What They’re Good For

Caran d’Ache colored pencils are good for any kind of sophisticated artistic endeavor. That being said, you wouldn’t use these on any doodling hobby simply because they are quite pricey and even successful artists consider them an investment.

Their smooth, creamy texture and velvety application make them ideal tools for portraits with intricate detail. Another feature that makes the luminance pencils ideal for the creation of portraits is that all 76 colors are lightfast.

Ratings Breakdown

With the highest lightfastness rating on the market and an application that not only rivals, but surpasses the world-popular Prismacolor Premier Soft Core pencils, the only thing left to wonder is whether all qualities combined justify the high tag price.

Lightfastness 5/5

Every single luminance colored pencil manufactured by Caran d’Ache has the highest lightfast rating available. This makes them the most lightfast colored pencils on the market, superior even to certain brands of oil paint- and this is coming from a wax-based colored pencil.

Sturdiness 5/5

Unlike the soft-cored Prismacolors, which are notorious for their fragile lead, Caran d’Ache makes a very high quality, very durable colored pencil with its world-class luminance line.

Caran d’Ache colored pencils are made with California Cedar wood making them thicker than most other brands of colored pencils. That being said, they are still comfortable to hold and protect the soft wax core, making it resistant to crumbling or shattering.

Binder 5/5

Caran d’Ache Luminance colored pencils are wax-based, made with pure, finely ground pigment that makes for a high-coverage, opaque finish and smooth, creamy application. While the application is smooth, the core itself is quite firm, withstanding sharpening and burnishing very well.

Color Intensity 5/5

Even though other brands provide a wider range of colors, Caran d’Ache still manages to produce colors not available in different sets as well as ensuring that each colored pencil delivers an intense, matte finish, alive with vibrant color.

Value 5/5

The question is, are these colored pencils so superior that they’re worth the hefty price tag? Any artist who’s ever used one will immediately, without hesitation, say absolutely.

At approximately $4 per pencil, this is not a price to take lightly, yet artists swear by this brand and these colored pencils. They are considered an investment worth every penny.

Final Verdict

Caran d’Ache Luminance colored pencils are considered by many to be the best colored pencils on the market. Definitely designed and manufactured for high quality performance, these are without doubt very expensive colored pencils.

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