Back in the day, the bigger your crayon pack, the cooler you were. Today, that still remains true, even though most adults have stayed away from crayons for the last decade or so of their life. But do you remember the size of a crayon?
There are four distinct crayon sizes—jumbo, large, regular, and triangular. Typically, their measurements are 5 × 9/16 inches, 4 × 7/16 inches, 3-5/8 × 5/16 inches, and 4 × ½ inches, respectively.
However, the exact measurements of a crayon, as well as its size classes, are different between brands. In this guide, I’ll speak about Crayola crayon sizes (since that’s the brand everyone uses/always wanted), as well as the various types of crayons and their uses.
How Big Is a Crayon?
The size of an individual crayon might be something you’ve never considered, especially if you tend to lose your crayons before using them up. However, if you’ve ever wondered what the size of a crayon is, you’ve come to the right place.
Crayola, which is the popular brand that everyone associates with crayons, manufactures and distributes numerous types of crayons, but for the most part, they come in one of four sizes—jumbo, large, normal, and triangular (which is a shape).
The following table will describe each of the size classes’ dimensions from Crayola.
|Size Class||Dimensions (Length × Diameter)|
|Jumbo||5 × 9/16 in.|
|Large||4 × 7/16 in.|
|Regular||3-5/8 × 5/16 in.|
|Triangular||4 × ½ in.*|
Each side of the triangular-shaped crayon is half an inch long.
Where Are There Different Crayon Sizes?
The next thing you’re probably wondering is, why do crayons come in different sizes? Why doesn’t Crayola just make a single standardized size for all of their crayons?
The answer is quite simple—different age groups have different levels of dexterity and gripping strength. As such, different age groups should the appropriately sized crayons to prevent them from snapping in a child’s palm.
For instance, children aged 1 to 2 years old might feel more comfortable using jumbo crayons. They might grip the crayon with all their strength, which would snap a large or regular-sized crayon. The thicker the crayon is, the more durable it will be against snapping in half.
Preschool kids should use jumbo or large-sized crayons. While they might understand that their grip could snap the crayon in half, they might lose control from time to time.
Regular-sized crayons are great for first graders and older. They come with finer points that allow them to stay within lines when coloring.
So, what about triangular crayons? Their points are just as fine as regular crayons, but their three-sided shapes prevent them from rolling off a table and landing on the floor. If you’ve ever had to fish 64 crayons off the ground, you know how much of a headache it can be.
Different Crayon Types
To the uninitiated, crayons might seem like a child’s coloring tool that they use during preschool, kindergarten, and elementary school. However, this couldn’t be further from the truth.
Artists will rely on crayons and different smudging techniques to add color and contrast to their works of art. However, they might not achieve the desired effect when using kid-friendly wax crayons.
That is why it’s important to choose the right type of crayon based on your artwork. Below, I’ll describe the six most commonly used crayon types and their purposes.
These are the crayons we’re used to seeing. They’re made of a waxy substance in which dyes are added. The liquid wax is poured into mold dyes, and after it hardens, it becomes the vibrant crayon we were used to using as school-aged children.
While beeswax is technically a type of wax, it differs from traditional wax-based crayons in terms of the wax used. In addition, beeswax crayons glide on the surface of paper a lot more smoothly than traditional crayons, and their colors are a lot more apparent on dark paper.
The thing about this type of crayon is that it doesn’t come in very many colors, but you can mix and match different hues to produce secondary and tertiary colors to your liking.
A chalk crayon is made primarily out of chalk and pigment, which allows it to adhere to construction paper exceptionally well. Not only that, but it can also stick to glass, wood, cardboard, and mirrors, and it’s relatively easy to wipe off.
Because of its chalky texture, it doesn’t take much pressure to wipe it off or smudge it into a mess. However, you can eternalize your chalk-based artwork by applying a bit of hairspray!
When you grind up a bunch of charcoal and compress the residue into thin sticks, you end up with charcoal crayons. Depending on how much binding agent is added to the charcoal mix, these crayons can be brittle or sort.
Brittle crayons produce deeper lines but snap rather easily, while soft charcoal is great for smudging. Because of their charcoal nature, color selection is limited to light, medium, and dark shades.
This is the type of crayon that artists will use. They are wax-based, oil-based, or combine the two bases to give them a distinct texture that is great for shading.
There are also water-soluble pastel crayons that are fantastic for adding colors to canvases, giving them a watercolor-like texture and appearance. The hardness of pastel crayons depends on how much binding agent was added to the mix.
While Conte and pastel crayons may look practically indistinguishable from one another, there is one huge difference—their composition.
Conte crayons are typically made by combining charcoal, pigments, and graphite with a clay or wax base, making them perfect for drawing and adding fine lines to intricate works of art.
The main Conte crayon colors are brown, red, black, and white—the last of which is mainly used for mixing with different pigments to add highlights. In addition, they don’t produce a dusty residue like traditional charcoal crayons.