The Best Artist Chamois for Blending, Cleaning, and More

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Blend, buff, and clean up with an artist chamois—a piece of porous animal skin that is supple and absorbent. Unlike paper towels that disintegrate or terry cloth rags that get encrusted with paint, a chamois is the perfect natural wipe-up tool. This fine-fibered porous leather, commonly sold in pieces measuring about 5 by 7 inches, can absorb a lot of water and catches hard-to-reach debris. It’s also handy for blending chalk, charcoal, and graphite on paper without abrasion—an excellent alternative to oily fingers that can discolor work. For both the work and the aftermath, an artist chamois is an essential part of any complete artist kit. Browse our selection of the best products below. 

ARTNEWS RECOMMENDS
Natural Artist Chamois
This natural chamois is reliable and long lasting. It has a high water capacity so you can work longer without having to pause and rewet it; it’s also easy to wring out to a near-dry state. It efficiently absorbs dirt and then readily releases it during washing. Made of high-quality leather, it doesn’t leave behind any microfilaments on surfaces and retains its supple finish after many uses. In fact, this chamois gets better over time, gradually softening without any diminishment of strength.

WE ALSO LIKE
Jack Richeson Artist Chamois

This chamois is slightly more expensive than our top pick, and it’s an upgrade choice for one reason: You can toss it in the washing machine, something you can’t do with many other natural chamois. Highly absorbent and durable, this chamois can be used for a deep clean when wet or for buffing, polishing, and blending when dry. It will remain supple and soft even after rigorous use.

ANOTHER GOOD CHOICE
Royal & Langnickel Chamois

This buttery-soft chamois showcases natural imperfections and feels more textured than other products. Because of its highly uneven surface, it is ideal for blending textures and for cleaning tough media from worktables. You can’t go wrong with this staple to polish, clean, and shade.

EDUCATORS’ CHOICE
Creative Mark Chamois Skin
This chamois is ideal for those who need lots of material to work with. It comes in the widely used size of 5 by 7 inches, but large, 13-inch squares are also available; these can easily be cut into smaller sections.
Buy: Creative Mark Chamois Skin $17.96

ALSO CONSIDER
Pro Art Chamois

Pro Art’s chamois is another good-quality pick, a decent alternative to the other natural options on this list. In addition to the standard 5 by 7 inches, it’s also available in a less common 3-by-4-inch piece, which may better suit the needs of some artists. Featuring a suede-like finish, it is soft, pliable, and absorbent; you can use it both dry and wet.
Buy: Pro Art Chamois $6.66

If you purchase an independently reviewed product or service through a link on our website, we may receive an affiliate commission Blend, buff, and clean up with an artist chamois—a piece of porous animal skin that is supple and absorbent. Unlike paper towels that disintegrate or terry cloth rags that get encrusted with paint, aRead MoreARTnews, Product RecommendationsARTnews.comRead More

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