Erasable Highlighters

In my post about how I go about memorizing songs, shows, scripts, etc., I mentioned one of my most highly-valued tools in my singing toolkit: The Erasable Highlighter. As with most things in life, though, there are caveats.

Because I have been accused of overthinking things more times than I care to admit, I’d be remiss if I didn’t mention the details. It is useful to know that there are two types of erasable highlighters. One type erases by friction and another type erases by chemical reaction. They each have subtle pros/cons, but honestly most people will never need to worry about the differences. In case you, too, have a curious desire for more information than is probably necessary, I’ll recap the details:

Friction.  This ink is thermosensitive, so temperature plays a big part of the appearance and  disappearance of the color. The heat from the friction of the eraser causes the ink to “disappear”, but very cold temperatures (below 14 F) can cause it to reappear. Conversely, leaving the markers (or your score) in a hot car can make the ink “disappear.” If this happens to your markers or score, just pop them in the freezer. If you have to return a score to a lending library, though, it’s best to use a chemical-based erasable highlighter. It could turn into an issue if the score you returned as unmarked was shipped in cold temperatures and suddenly had lots of markings reappear!

Chemical.  The other kind of erasable highlighter ink gets erased with a chemical reaction from the eraser-end of the marker. One end of the marker has a color tip, the opposite end has an eraser tip. A potential downside to these is that once the eraser chemical has been on the paper, you can’t re-highlight over it. Also, some of the colors aren’t erasable by the eraser tip of other colors.  So, for example, it’s best to just erase the pink color with the pink marker’s eraser. These markers also seem to dry out faster than the others, in my experience.

My Choice.  This is a rarity for me, but I tend to use what I can easily find at the time. Generally it’s the friction-based highlighters that I use most often. I congratulate myself for just making a choice and moving forward, although the What Ifs are always slightly tugging at the back of my mind. I suggest you also just buy some, use them, and enjoy all of the possibilities they have to offer!

Be sure to read the accompanying post:  The Herculean Task of Memorizing a One-Woman Show.

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