Should You Eat Sharpie Ink? 

Last updated on September 14th, 2022 at 09:47 pm

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Last updated on September 14th, 2022 at 09:47 pm

Sharpies are a great writing instrument and are used for a wide variety of things. You can use them to draw on elbow noodles and create a colorful necklace. 

You can draw and color different pictures with them. 

You can create and craft many different things using Sharpies. But what about eating Sharpie ink?

If you get hungry while crafting and decide to munch on something with Sharpie writing on it, what will happen? What if your toddler gets a hold of a Sharpie and starts drawing and sucking on the felt tip, will he be okay? 

Sharpie markers are non-toxic. If you (or more likely your child) end up swallowing any of the sharpie ink, you (or they) will be okay. Eating Sharpie ink isn’t something you should do on purpose but it shouldn’t harm you. 

The Sharpie ink may not taste great and can cause an upset stomach, but there is no need for a visit to the emergency room. The only “lasting” side effect could be some staining on the tongue. 

However, if you have used an oil-based Sharpie to create anything crafty with bake or food ware, it may not be safe. While the oil-based Sharpie markers are still non-toxic, they have not been certified for use in food preparation. 

The risk of ingesting oil-based Sharpie ink happens when you place hot food on the ink. This will reactivate the oil causing a chance of something to seep through. 

If you have a plate you created by using oil-based Sharpies, make sure to place something over the plate before putting the hot food on. You can place napkins or wax paper on the plate to serve as a protective barrier between the oil-based Sharpie writing and the hot food. 

Can The Smell Of Sharpies Make You Sick? 

Remember opening your Sharpies in class and taking a deep breath inhaling that smell? Do you also remember your teacher and parents very sternly telling you not to “huff” the marker? 

The smell of a Sharpie might have seemed so good, you couldn’t help but take a deep breath in. What is so bad about the smell of Sharpies? 

Can “huffing” Sharpies really make you sick? 

Writing with a Sharpie will not make you sick. On purpose taking a Sharpie and taking many deep breaths most likely will however. If you plan on using Sharpies for a long period of time, make sure you are in a well-ventilated area or have a fan blowing nearby. 

If you begin to feel dizzy or nauseous, stop using the Sharpie. You can come back to your project later once you are feeling better. 

The reason behind that satisfying sniff of the Sharpie is actually volatile organic compounds. Volatile organic compounds are gases that come from different solids or liquids. Some of these chemicals can cause short and long-term health effects. 

The short-term effects of this compound are eye, nose, and throat irritation, headaches, nausea, allergic skin reaction, and dizziness. The long-term effects can end up causing damage to the liver, kidney, and nervous system. 

You may be wondering, why would this volatile organic compound need to be in Sharpies? The reason this compound is a part of markers is that it helps the ink dry once written on the paper. 

The volatile organic compound is not only in markers, but other household products as well, such as varnish, aerosol sprays, paint strippers, disinfectants, fuel, and even some crafting supplies. Many of these products come with warnings such as use in well-ventilated areas.

What Does It Mean When You Smell Sharpie In Your House? 

The smell of a Sharpie marker is very distinct. It can smell good, but only up to a certain point. Eventually, the smell will be overpowering and give you a headache. 

Have you ever smelled Sharpies when you weren’t using any? What exactly does it mean when you smell Sharpies but none are opened?

If you smell Sharpies in your home, this could mean you have a leak in your HVAC unit or refrigerator. One of the main ingredients in markers is similar to acetone and it is used in large objects like HVAC units and refrigerators. 

The odor in markers may not typically affect you in such small doses. However, if you smell them and you’re not using them, here are a few tips to know how to handle the smell. 

  • Identify the source: You need to first see where the smell is coming from. Is it the HVAC unit, the fridge, or from somewhere else? 
  • Clean any messes: If you notice that a leak has happened, get it cleaned up first. Be sure to wash the area where the acetone has leaked. If it has leaked on fabric or clothing, soak the items in warm water first and then wash with detergent. If the leak is on the floor, use a damp cloth dipped in detergent and clean up the leak. If the smell is too strong and overpowering, don’t try and clean the leak yourself; call an HVAC professional to clean up the leak. 
  • Ventilate the house: The permanent marker smell travels far and can stay on fabrics. If your home has little airflow, the smell can become overpowering rather quickly. Open a few windows and turn on some fans for a cross-breeze. 
  • Use an air purifier: The air purifier can help to reduce the smell and remove toxic particles from the air. It is best to use an air purifier that has an advanced air filter. This will help to make sure that all the acetone-smelling molecules will be removed from the air. 
  • Use a deodorizer:  You can spray the deodorizer throughout your house to help eliminate the smell of permanent markers. If you don’t have any deodorizer on hand, you can create your own. All you need is water, vinegar, and baking soda. Combine equal parts of all three to create your very own natural deodorizer. 
  • Use lemons: Lemons are one of the best natural ways to remove foul odors. You can use lemons in a few different ways to remove odors from your home. You can cook the lemons raw to help eliminate odors. Slice a few lemons and drop the pieces in a boiling pot of water. Allow the lemon pieces to simmer and your house will soon smell lemony fresh. You can also squeeze some lemon juice and water together. Use this mixture to dab or spray on the area where the smell is coming from. 

Final Thoughts 

It is not suggested that anyone eat Sharpie ink. However, if you (or a little child) accidentally end up ingesting some, it should be okay.

If you ever smell markers and no one is using them, be sure to find the source, call for help, and stay safe. 

Last updated on September 14th, 2022 at 09:47 pm

Matthew R

Hi, My name is Matt and I am all about toys! When trying to find accurate information online about toys I was finding it difficult so I decided to make this site.

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