What Are Erasers Made Of?

An eraser is a flexible substance that can be made synthetically using a range of chemical methods or naturally from a variety of plant sources. It has been around for a very long period, and over that time, many different varieties have been made, each having unique qualities that make them suited for a variety of uses.

Rubber-based erasers are a very useful invention that has made life easier for many people by assisting them with writing, sketching, and other tasks. They are also perfectly safe to use.

Art gum erasers are made of soft, coarse rubber and are excellent for erasing larger areas because they don’t damage the paper.

History of Erasers-Natural Rubber

Natural rubber is credited to having been created in 1770 by Edward Naime. When removing undesirable pencil traces in the 18th century, individuals would roll up pieces of white bread.

Naime is credited with using rubber by accident and discovered rubber’s erasing properties that it worked even better and was more effective than bread. They were originally known as “rubber” since Naime started selling them so that people might use them as erasers, and in some locations, that name is still used today!

Later on, in 1839, Charles Goodyear started vulcanizing common erasers, a procedure that prevents them from going bad and has made them incredibly popular and widespread worldwide.

How We Use Them Today?

Erasers are a modern convenience that we use frequently on a daily basis and are essentially a requirement for all school supplies.

Have you ever given any attention to how they actually operate, despite the fact that we use them often to correct our errors?

You should first be aware of what rubber erasers are removing: pencil lead. Actually, graphite material, not lead metal, is used to make pencil lead. The graphite particles in our pencil erase pencil marks and adhere to the paper’s fibers when we rub them against a piece of paper. Therefore, since it is merely a mineral that has rubbed off, this graphite is not irreversibly adhered to the paper.

Rubber, on the other hand, makes up the majority of regular erasers. The eraser material is made of a rubber and sulfur mixture that keeps it in good condition and extends its useful life. Erasers can be flexible since they also contain a softener (such as vegetable oil), which is applied in addition to abrasives. Lastly, to give them a certain hue, dyes may be added.

Raw Materials in Synthetic Rubber

The monomers of butadiene, styrene, isoprene, ethene, propene, benzene, and others are used as synthetic rubber’s raw materials. Acetylene, coal, oil, and natural gas are the sources of the monomers.

1. Butadiene

Its chemical name is 1,3-butadiene. It is typically a colorless, non-corrosive gas, although it can become a liquid around – 4.50C and has a light fragrant odor. Extractive distillation from crude butylene concentration (C4) stream is the technology used in commercial butadiene manufacture.

This is also known as phenylethylene, cinnamene, vinylbenzene, and ethynylbenzene. It often has a sweet scent and is a colorless liquid that is easily evaporated. Without water, it dissolves in some liquids of ethylene and propylene production).

2. Styrene

This is also known as phenylethylene, cinnamene, vinylbenzene, and ethynylbenzene. It often has a sweet scent and is a colorless liquid that is easily evaporated. Without water, it dissolves in some liquids.

3. Isoprene

An unsaturated pentahydrocarbon gave rise to isoprene. The liquid form of stabilized isoprene is transparent and colorless, and it smells like petroleum.

4. Ethene

Ethene is commonly referred to as ethylene. It is a colorless gas that is lighter than air and has a sweet smell. The fraction resulting from the distillation of natural gas and oil is cracked in the commercial manufacturing process.

5. Propene

Propylene is another name for propane. It is a colorless gas with a smell akin to petroleum. It can be made by splitting, cracking, and reforming hydrocarbon mixtures or by refining gasoline.

6. Benzene

A white liquid with a smell similar to gasoline is benzene. It is a highly hazardous and flammable liquid. As a byproduct of oil refining, benzene is mostly produced.

Different Types of Erasers

It is a crucial raw material used in the manufacture of anything from surgical gloves to car tires. However, selecting the appropriate rubber type for the specific part design and application environment is necessary for successfully manufacturing these components.

For this reason, a summary of some of the most popular Novelty eraser varieties, defining what they are, their essential characteristics, and the most prevalent applications for them.

1. Vinyl/plastic eraser:

Because their crumbs are not as fine as those of a rubber eraser, vinyl/plastic erasers appear cleaner than rubber erasers. Sometimes it can be challenging to completely remove all of the rubber eraser crumbs since vinyl erasers are so small.

Erasers are made of vinyl and plastic is available in a range of forms and colors, including white, black and pink erasers. When erasing on a dark surface, a black piece of rubber won’t produce the (possible) white ghosting appearance that a white eraser might. Erasers work well to remove pencils mark and charcoal.

The paper fibers are mostly unaffected by black lead pencils markings thanks to the non-abrasive nature of white plastic erasers, which also erase pencils mark more effectively than the vintage pink eraser.

2. Pencils Erasers:

These pencil erasers are the ones that most of us are most familiar with; they can be found on the end of practically every #2 black lead pencil in existence.

This kind of pencil-attached eraser removes the pencil marks from the paper by gradually shedding itself. Nevertheless, when employing these aggressively, keep caution in mind. If you use them too forcefully, your paper can be torn right through.

3. Kneaded Eraser

Kneaded erasers eraser will undoubtedly bring back similar memories. Kneading erasers are soft, malleable, and simple to mold into a variety of shapes. Artists adore kneaded erasers because kneaded eraser make it simple to remove fine details by just pinching the kneaded erasers.

Kneaded erasers remove pigment (such as graphite sticks and charcoal) from the surface to work. As a result, the paper is left unharmed and smear-free.

The kneading eraser is also easy to clean. Just stretch the kneaded erasers and let it self-fold (also known as kneading). When working with charcoal, a kneaded eraser is an essential item to have in your toolbox.

4. Pencil Erasers

A vinyl core is enclosed in wood, making

To avoid re-smearing graphite on your work, it is always a good practice to wipe the eraser’s tip as you work.

However, one should constantly keep in mind that because erasers are made of vinyl, soft vinyl erasers are incredibly durable and, if not handled cautiously, might harm your paper.

How to Clean an Eraser?

Rubber erasers can be cleaned using a variety of techniques. The least labor-intensive approach, however, is the best.

The simple steps to clean the eraser are given below:

1. Gently smear the sandpaper with the eraser.

Rub the attached erasers very delicately across the fine-grit sandpaper. Better sandpaper is that which is finer. Grit is a measure of sandpaper roughness; the higher the grit number, the finer the sandpaper (the less rough it is) obtain sandpaper that is 400-grit or more.

Because if the sandpaper is too harsh, you will rub off a significant portion of the eraser, it is best to use sandpaper with high grain. The likelihood increases that you will just remove the layer of the eraser where the graphite adheres the less harsh the sandpaper is.

Rub the eraser carefully because using too much pressure can still cause too much eraser to be removed.

2. Keep Scrubbing the Eraser’s Affected Areas

Till there is no longer any graphite on the eraser, continue gently rubbing all the unclean areas of it. As the rubber erasers gunk builds up, move on to new sections of the paper.

Beware of the sandpaper’s accumulation of eraser residue. There are probably graphite particles in these shavings. The old erasers may take up graphite particles once again if you rub them on these shavings.

As shavings build up in some areas, shift to newer sandpaper regions.

3. Put the eraser in the appropriate case.

In a dedicated novelty erasers case, keep your eraser. Your eraser won’t become stiff or gather dirt if you use a case. It will significantly increase the eraser’s lifespan.

Other Options

You can use a blank sheet of white paper in the event that you are unable to obtain sandpaper. Similar procedures apply when using sandpaper. The difference is that cleaning the synthetic rubber could take more time. In comparison to sandpaper, the paper does not remove as much grime.


Who invented the eraser?

The English chemist Joseph Priestley gave caoutchouc the name rubber in 1770 because it could be used to erase markings. On March 30, 1858, Hymen L. issued Joseph Reckendorfer of New York City the first patent in the country for an integrated pencil and electric erasers.

Are erasers plastic or rubber?

Erasers come in a range of sizes, colors, and forms and have a rubbery substance. On one end of certain pencils has an art gum eraser. Synthetic gum derived from soy and synthetic rubber tree is used to make less expensive erasers, whereas vinyl, plastic, and gum elastic-like materials are used to make more expensive or art gum erasers.

What is the stuff that comes off of natural rubber?

Small fragments of mixed rubber and graphite are left behind as the rubber captures the graphite particles. When you’re done erasing, you brush the “stuff” off your paper. The eraser was created in 1770 by an English engineer by the name of Edward Naime.

Is the eraser man-made or natural?

Either natural or synthetic rubber is used to make erasers. Latex harvested from rubber trees is used to make natural rubber. The latex’s water component is reduced, raising the putty rubber percentage to 60%. To create solid dry rubber sheets, acid is added to the liquid concentrate.


Erasers are tiny, rubbery tools used to remove pencil marks from paper. Erasers were originally constructed of natural rubber, but times have drastically altered, especially to meet the demands of contemporary artists and draftsmen.

Today, the majority of erasers are composed of plastic or synthetic rubber. Due to the market’s over-saturation with various shapes, colors, and specifications, their complexity varies tremendously.

Some disintegrate, while others are moldable. There are many other synthetic rubbers available for contemporary artists.