Caran d'Ache Pastel Pencils are made from pure raw materials to create a pastel pencil paste that is fed by hand into round moulding dies, oven-dried in special baskets, carefully glued between two strips of the finest California cedar, and cut into lengths to produce several pencils. Four coats of clear varnish are applied, and great care is taken to exactly match the color cap to the shade of the pastel. As a final step, the pencils are sharpened in a double-cone process, a particularly delicate operation for such a fragile product. Features of these pencils include a large lead diameter (4.7 mm) with a strong point and a rich texture that adheres well to most surfaces. Creamy to apply, the pencils shade easily, while the hexagonal, rounded barrels reduce the risk of breakage from rolling off work surfaces.