Best writing gel pen: The Best Gel Pens of September 2020


The Best Gel Pens of September 2020

Unsharpen may earn a commission when you buy through links on our site.

There are few writing experiences that are more satisfying than a great gel pen. The right gel pen is buttery smooth, has an ink color that really pops, and is a pleasure to write with on all sorts of different paper. Gel pens are truly one of the best and most versatile ways to write on almost all paper types.

Why Gel Pens?

Gel pens are useful for a number of reasons. As a type of rollerball ink, a gel pen is super smooth and a great writer on most types of paper. Gel ink also has the ability to carry lots of pigment or dye which allows not just for bright colors but special writing, like metallic colors and sparkles. This means gel pen are great not just for writing, but also for drawing and other art uses. You might not be in the market for a sparkle pen but the gel ink type is also quick-drying, great for left-handed people, and comes in most popular pen refill sizes.

Gel pens are not without their downsides though. A popular complaint with gel pens is that they run out quickly. This is because they put a lot of ink down on the page, which means they inevitably won’t last as long as a ballpoint pen. This means gel pens are relatively expensive compared to ballpoints and other pen types (even hybrids). Some gel pens are prone to smearing, especially on coated paper, like a Rhodia, which is why many lefties prefer quick-drying gel inks, like the Zebra Sarasa Dry and Pentel Energel.

Pentel Energel Infree

The Pentel Energel line is consistently a top pick with gel pen fans thanks to the smooth writing and quick drying times. The most popular pen in the line with true fans is the excellent Energel-X, which is cheap and easy to find. While it’s a fine pen, it’s been upgraded in the Energel Infree. The Infree is the same pen — complete with the gel ink and oversized button on the top — but it has a clear body, metal clip, and cool silver grip. The Infree also sold in limited edition colors which really showed off what Pentel can do with their gel technology.

But, don’t worry, if you can’t find the Infree the Energel-X is always available! If you want a metal, executive version of this pen then you want the Philography (aka Energel Style in the US).

Sarasa Dry and Sarasa SE

Zebra Sarasa Dry

The entire Sarasa line of gel pens is excellent, but the Sarasa Dry gel pen is the best of the bunch. It features a super-quick drying ink that is a great option for lefties, just like the Energel (but possibly better). Zebra claims the ink dries 85% faster than a traditional ink, and while that’s hard to verify there is no denying that this ink is top-notch.

The Sarasa Dry also has a great looking body, which styling that is cooler than the typical office pen. It also has the Sarasa’s spring-loaded clip, which is functional and fun to play with. The Sarasa Dry is sold in both a 0.4 mm and 0.5 mm sizes. There isn’t a huge difference between the two, but if you want quick dry times then you definitely want a smaller writing tip, not a full 0.7 mm or 1.0 mm.

The Sarasa Dry is a Japanese pen, but it’s sold as the Sarasa SE in the United States. The two have the same great ink, so you are covered there. The SE has an incredible sneaker grip which is super comfortable, but the overall styling of the pen isn’t quite as cool as the Dry’s.

Uni-ball Signo 207

The Signo 207 and it’s derivatives — the Sign0 307 and the 207 Plus+ — is a popular and popular gel pen. It’s widely available and has ink with all the attributes anyone could hope to see. The ink is of archival quality and fade-resistant, it is also pigmented so it’s water-resistant and fraud proof. The pen is known also for its handsome design and excellent, sneaker-style rubber grip.

Pilot Juice Up

Pilot used to be the king of the gel pens with its G2, but times have moved on and the G2 has stayed the same. Luckily Pilot has made advances as well, with the Juice, and then the Juice Up pens. The Juice Up is the way to go these days thanks to a super cool modern styling and a excellent gel ink. While the Juice is still a very good pen, and is available in more colors and sizes than this, the Juice Up remains the premium version and the better pen.

This pen has one of the better 0.4 mm refills sold today and it’s a needletip, so it’s great for journalling in smaller notebooks. There is a 0.3 mm as well and it’s a pretty good pen, but the 0.4 mm is the sweet spot for great writing with this exceptionally cool gel pen.

Before the Juice-Up Pilot had the Juice gel pen, which is a lower-end model. The Juice is a bit cheaper and has more color options, but we’d still recommend the Juice-Up.

Pilot Hi-Tec-C Gel Pen

No list of gel pens would be complete without this classic. The Hi-Tec-C and the Hi-Tec-C Coleto are absolutely phenomenal gel pens with classic styling and great writing performance from 0.25 mm up to 0.5 mm. These pens are so standard and so loved that they may not seem special any more, but they remain must-owns for anyone interested in writing. The best of the line is the 0.4 mm Hi-Tec-C or the two-color Coleto in the classic clear body.

Best Broad Gel Pens

One of the appeals of gel pens is that they can get very broad (1.0 mm+) and very wet. If what you are looking for is the biggest, boldest coloring without spending a ton on a specialty fountain pen, then a broad gel pen is about as good as it gets. Of course, these pens get messy and you’ll have to choose your paper carefully, but they remain incredibly fun to use.

Here are the picks for the best broad gel pens:

Best Erasable Gel Pen

This one is an absolute no-brainer… The best erasable gel pen is the Pilot FriXion Ball Knock. Pilot has engineered an excellent erasable gel ink that looks great, writes smoothly, and is fun to use. The only hesitation with this selection is that this pen might belong in the “Best Gel Pens” list not the “Best Erasable Gel Pens” one, but for the sake of accuracy it’ll remain here.

Energel Pro Permanent

Best Permanent Gel Pen

There aren’t a whole lot of options here, but the smart money is on the Pentel Energel Permanent Pro liquid gel pen. This pen writes like a Energel, has fast dry times, but also has a permanent, waterproof, fraud-proof, pigment based ink.

Hopefully you have some thoughts now about what a gel pen is, why you might want one, and what some of the best ones are. This list is updated regularly so make sure to check back for updates when you are in the market for more pens.


Do Gel Pens Write The Best?

You might not have guessed it, but this is a common question. Gel pens are great — they are smooth, fun to use, and they allow for excellent color tons (much better than rollerball or ballpoint). Gel pens also dry quickly, with pens like the Energel and Sarasa Dry being top performers in this area. On the downside, gels pens are not known for their longevity and skipping on cheaper paper can be a real problem.

But are gel pens the best writers? While many people opt for fountain pens and some people love their rollerballs, gel pens are the favorite here at Unsharpen. Their combination of smoothness, great colors, and personality make gel pens the most writer-friendly type of ink sold today.

What Makes Gel Pens Gel?

The ink in gel pens is actually gelled, using a gelling agent. The base of the ink is almost always water and then a dye or pigment is added for color, but there has to be something to thicken the solution. This is the gelling agent, and it was traditionally xanthan gum. Other substances like tragacanth gum and various thickeners are used by different companies, but the inventor of the gel ink, Sakura, and many companies use xanthan gum.

What Are Gel Pens Good At?

Gel pens excel in a few areas, but the main applications where their ink is second to none are art and quick-drying. Gel pens are great at art because they have a huge variety of colors and those colors can really pop, more so than any ink type except for fountain pen ink. Just look above at the Pentel Hybrid Dual Metallic gel pen. Not only does it have metallic color, it also has glitter in the ink. Gel is the only ink that can do that. This sort of versatility makes gel ink unmatched.

And then if you are left-handed or value quick-dry times, gel ink is always a great choice. Oil-based inks and fountain pen inks can sit for 15 or more seconds because drying, something that’s a major problem if you are worried about smudges and smears. Gel ink dries in a snap, especially if you have an ink that is purpose-designed for this.

What is behind the ink in a gel pen?

The transparent gel that is behind the ink in the refill of a gel pen is usually known as “stopper” or “follower.” This is usually a type of silicone gel that acts as a barrier between the outside air and the dyed and/or pigmented section of the gel (basically the ink in a gel pen). This gel has numerous jobs, mainly acting to protect the ink from evaporation, push the ink down so the pen writes, and to prevent the ink from leaking out of the back of the pen.

Blog – Gel Pens | JetPens

Blog – Gel Pens | JetPens JetPens is accepting and shipping orders. See COVID-19 for more details.

Pentel EnerGel: A Comprehensive Guide

Aug 31, 2021

We did a deep dive into the Pentel EnerGel to see what makes it a lefty favorite. We explore each product line, from the classic Euro to the sweet Clena.

Buy It For Life: Writing Tools and Bags

Aug 24, 2021

Buy it for life (BIFL) is all about choosing products for their quality and ability to stand the test of time. We discuss what to look for in a BIFL product and recommend some of our favorite buy it for life pens, pencils, bags, and accessories.

The Best Pens for Note-Taking

Aug 17, 2021

Though we live in a digital age, taking notes by hand is still worthwhile. Handwriting encourages slowing down and rephrasing information, which leads to deeper understanding of a subject. Click through for some pen selections that make note-taking effortless

Top 20 Back to School Supplies

Aug 10, 2021

To keep you from heading into the first day of school unprepared, we’ve gathered our top 20 student must-haves. Read on to see the school supplies we recommend for junior high to college students.

Korean Stationery Brands You Need to Know

Jul 27, 2021

If you’re a stationery lover, you probably know that Korean stationery is on the rise. In this guide, we’ll focus on ten Korean stationery brands that should be on your radar, as well as some of our favorite products that they offer.

Made in America

Jun 29, 2021

We love scouring the world for standout stationery, but some of the best comes from our own backyard. From ATELEIA to Word Notebooks, we profile our favorite made-in-the-USA brands and products.

Zebra Sarasa: A Comprehensive Guide

Jun 8, 2021

The Zebra Sarasa is a student favorite for its smooth-flowing ink and sturdy binder clip. We explore each version of this popular pen, from the famous Push Clip to the wondrously lefty-friendly Dry.

The Best Pens for Journaling

May 18, 2021

If you love to journal, or would like to journal and don’t love it yet, the right pen is key to the experience. We’ve picked out a wide range of smooth-writing pens with archival inks, so read on to find the one that’s a fit for you.

The Best Titanium Pens

Apr 20, 2021

Light enough to slip into a pocket and nearly indestructible, a titanium pen is an excellent everyday carry option. In this guide, we’ll explain exactly why titanium is such a prized material for writing instruments, and recommend some of our favorites.

The Best Bold Point Pens

Mar 23, 2021

As much as we love fine-tip pens, there’s something delightful and even empowering about a good broad-tip pen. Bold pens are all about making a statement loud and clear, great for signatures, outlines, and flashcards. Read on to see some of our all-time favorite bold point pens!

The Best Brass Pens

Feb 16, 2021

In a time of increasingly impersonal stationery, a brass pen is an intriguing reminder of every word you have ever written with it. Read on to see our favorite brass pens, including some that are machined by hand.

The Best Gel Pens | JetPens

The Best Gel Pens | JetPens JetPens is accepting and shipping orders. See COVID-19 for more details.   >    >    >     >    >    >  

It isn’t surprising that gel pens are so beloved. Students and working professionals alike approve of the crisp lines and vibrant colors that these humble writing instruments provide. Yet picking out the best gel pen for everyone is not an easy task: some might prefer pastel colors, while others demand the finest tips possible. To make sure we cover every base, we’ve picked the best gel pen in each category for this guide rather than comparing all the pens to each other. Read on to see all of our selections! You can also watch our Top Gel Pens of All Time and Top 10 Gel Pens videos to see our favorite gel pens in action

Time and time again, we confidently throw our weight behind the Uni-ball Signo UM-151. The impressive range of tip sizes, colors, and body styles makes it an excellent choice for anyone, from color-coding students to professional writers. The pigment-based ink is waterproof, archival, and fade-resistant so any notes will stand the test of time. You can learn more about the Signo by reading our comprehensive guide.

What is a Gel Pen?

Gel Ink Formula

Gel pens are a surprisingly recent invention. During the 1980s, Sakura was experimenting with certain kinds of gel that are solid at rest but become free-flowing when disturbed. This property is known as thixotropic action and must be balanced with viscosity to produce an ink that writes well. After rigorous testing, the gel ink formula was born.

Like ballpoint and rollerball pens, a gel pen has a small, revolving ball in the tip. As you write, the surface of the ball is coated with ink from the reservoir and dispenses that ink onto the page.

Gel ink differs in that it consists of pigment suspended in a water-based gel. Gel pens tend to create lines that are wider than a ballpoint and finer than a rollerball with the same nominal tip size. They also come in dozens of different colors that are hard to find in other writing instruments. Plus, the ink flows readily and without pressure, reducing hand cramps. However, because gel inks use a water-based gel, they usually take longer to dry and can smudge if you’re not careful.

Gel Pen Recommendations

Without this pick, the pens on our list may not have ever existed—after all, the Gelly Roll was the world’s first gel ink pen. Sakura has continuously refined and improved the ink’s formula, and their mastery has created some of the best gel pens for arts and crafts. Glitter effects, pastel colors, and three-dimensional textures flow boldly and effortlessly from Gelly Roll pens. The ink also shows up well on dark and colored paper, and some can even write on non-porous surfaces! Learn more about all the different ink colors and effects in our comprehensive guide. By far the best erasable gel pen, the Pilot FriXion combines vibrancy, smooth ink flow, and clean erasability. Unlike other erasable pens, the FriXion uses a thermo-sensitive gel ink. Rubbing the hard eraser on the end of the pen over writing produces heat from friction, which turns the ink invisible. This also makes it easy to write over areas that have been “erased.” Learn more about the FriXion gel pens plus markers, fineliners, and more in our guide. Note that, because FriXion ink reacts to heat, it can disappear when left in hot cars and other warm environments. We do not recommend using a FriXion pen to write important information that you want to store for long periods of time. You may be able to get writing to reappear by placing the writing surface in a freezer with a temperature below 14°F (-10°C). The Signo 207 Premier combines the performance of our top gel pen with a girthy and luxuriously squishy grip. The same ergonomic pen won’t work for everyone, but the Premier doesn’t rely solely on its grip: it is lightweight and carefully balanced with a low center of gravity. The ink practically glides onto the page, preventing you from pressing too hard on the tip. All of these features ensure that holding the pen won’t tire your hand.

For those who prefer a firmer grip, the Pilot Dr. Grip is an excellent option. It comes with the popular Pilot G2 refill, renowned for its rich color and smooth flow.

The Pilot Hi-Tec-C is the indisputable champion of fine-tip gel pens. Where most companies rarely venture below 0.5 mm, the Hi-Tec-C comes with tips as miniscule as 0.25 mm! The refill is such a cult hit that companies like CW&T have built entire pen bodies around it. Despite its fineness, the pen writes smoothly and even comes in a variety of fun colors. You can learn more about this gel pen in our comprehensive guide. While the Hi-Tec-C is beloved for its precision tip, it tends to skip more than other gel pens. Hi-Tec-C fans are more accepting of this quirk, but other gel pen users might find it frustrating. The Pilot Juice Up only comes in a tip size as small as 0.3 mm, but it has a more consistent flow. While you can use just about any pen to journal, we’re partial to the Zebra Sarasa Push Clip Gel Pen. The vibrant pigment ink is both water and fade resistant, ensuring your journal entries will stand up to spilled glasses of water and coffee rings. You can fill your journal with bright pops of color, pastel hues, and even beautiful marble effects! Tip sizes ranging from 0.3 mm to 1.0 mm let you write as finely or as boldly as you like. Check out our comprehensive guide on the Zebra Sarasa to learn more. Left-handed writers know too well the frustration of smearing perfectly written notes. The Pentel EnerGel uses a quick-drying ink that greatly reduces smudging without sacrificing smoothness. The EnerGel comes in a variety of body styles—both capped and retractable—but we’re especially fond of the classy Philography and its twist mechanism. Learn more about the Pentel EnerGel in our comprehensive guide. Students who have suffered the pain of highlighter-smudged notes will wonder how they ever lived without the Zebra Sarasa Mark On. This pen uses ink that is specially formulated with a high level of water resistance, which gives it that extra edge to stand up to highlighting. It barely budges under the notoriously smear-prone Zebra Mildliner. Plus, the Mark On uses the same body as the Sarasa Push Clip, with a strong binder clip that can attach to thick surfaces like binder covers. The softly colored Sakura Pastel Decorese Gel Pen balances a medium tip size with high-opacity ink so you can use it in a variety of situations. We especially enjoy using the Decorese on non-porous surfaces like photos or even glass, but the ink shows up well on light and dark papers too.

The Sakura Decorese is an excellent option for crafters and DIY enthusiasts, but may not be the perfect pastel pen for those who just want to color-code their notes with baby blues and rosy pinks. Pilot G2 Pastel Gel Pens have a much more reasonable dry time and make great note-taking pens.

The Parker Jotter has been pulled out of briefcases and clipped to suit pockets for over sixty years, and for good reason. This sophisticated pen fits perfectly in any professional setting thanks to its sleek, iconic look. The durable stainless steel body stands up to daily use and comes in a variety of understated colors, some with subtly etched patterns. If you simply cannot wait for ink to dry, the Zebra Sarasa Dry Gel Pen was made for you. It features Zebra’s DRYJELL technology, which dries 85% faster than conventional inks! Just like the Zebra Push Clip pens, the Sarasa Dry features a sturdy binder clip that clamps firmly onto pockets and notebook covers. Though the Sarasa Dry’s ink becomes smudge-free almost instantly, it has very little water resistance. Those who prefer a water resistant option should consider the Ohto Rays Flash Dry Gel Pen. This professional gel pen combines colored plastic and brushed steel for a classic design with a modern twist. The Pentel EnerGel Permanent upgrades the standard EnerGel in an impressive way. The ink is waterproof and fade resistant without sacrificing the smooth flow and quick dry times that the EnerGel is known for. When signing checks, contracts, and other documents that demand longevity, the EnerGel is sure to make a mark that lasts. Finding the perfect white gel pen is harder than you think: not every gel pen can combine opaque ink with smooth flow. Thankfully, you won’t have to search forever: the Uni-ball Signo Broad is by far the best white gel pen we’ve ever tried. The bright white ink pops on dark papers and is exceptionally handy for adding highlights to art. You can even use it as correction fluid in a pinch! Just like its Signo siblings, the Broad gel pen uses waterproof and archival ink. Learn more about white ink pens in our guide.

Shop This Post

If you’re still not sure what gel pen you should try, check out our gel pen samplers! We’ve created fun packs that let you test out some of our best-selling pens. Whether you’re looking for fine tips, ergonomic options, or just fun colors, you’re sure to find a gel pen sampler you’ll love.

Add to Cart


Which gel pen is your favorite? Let us know in the comments below. Be sure to subscribe to our newsletter so you’ll be the first to know about our future guides!

13 Best Gel Roller Pens On The Market

Check out this list of the best gel roller pens Amazon has to offer.

Writing by hand is not quite a dying art, and when you do write something by hand you want to enjoy a smooth writing experience. Amazon has a number of excellent pens, and some of the best options are gel roller pens. The smooth-rolling design and the bright liquid ink make these pens fun to write with.

Whether you are buying a pen for yourself or for a gift, these rollerball pens will be a good fit. 

What Makes the Best Gel Roller Pens the Best?

Before looking at the specific gel pens that are the top of the line, first, consider what makes them the best. Some of the features to look for in a pen include:

  • Smooth Writing. These pens should glide across the page without a scratchy feel to the tip.
  • Smudging. Gel pens can have ink that smudges, which is problematic for the writer.
  • Bleed-Through. Bleeding through to the other side of the page is a fault of some gel pens.
  • Feel in the Hand. The overall feel in the hand also must be part of the selection process.
  • Look. These pens look attractive, which makes them a good option for gifts.

Best Gel Roller Pens on Amazon

If you are shopping for roller gel pens on Amazon, this is the list to go by.

1. Gelly Roll Pens

Gelly Roll pens are smooth with minimal bleed-through. They have a simplistic design that makes them rank well for the overall look. The only drawback to this pen is it has very easy to smudge the ink.

That drawback can also be a perk because the pens have quite a bit of ink to write with. It comes in many colors as well.

Sakura Gelly Roll Glaze Pen, Assorted Colors, Pack of 10
  • Blister card glaze 3-dimensional glossy ink pen set
  • A roller ball pen that is easy and comfortable to use
  • A raised effect that is delicate and can be crushed-down
  • Waterproof on most surfaces; use on light backgrounds, and on plastic, glass, ceramic and metal
  • Includes 1 each gloss clear, gloss yellow, gloss orange, gloss red, gloss pink, gloss rose, gloss purple, gloss green, gloss blue, gloss black pens

2. Zebra Sarasa Retractable Ballpoint Pen

The Zebra Sarasa Retractable pen is a gel pen that has a ballpoint end. It has a rubber grip that makes it feel comfortable in the hand, and the ink does not smudge easily. It writes smoothly.

This pen loses points for its heavy amount of bleed-through. It also doesn’t have much in its design to make it stand out. If you are looking for smooth, easy-to-hold pens with gel ink, this will fit the bill nicely.

3. Muji Gel-Ink Ballpoint Pens

If you’re looking for a pen with an elegant look, this one works well. Its black ink has decent smoothness, and it has minimal bleed-through. 

This pen has a very thin tip, and that can make it less smooth to use.

4. Pentel EnerGel RTX Retractable

These pens come in every color of the rainbow. The fine tip is good for detail writing, but it can reduce the smoothness a bit. It has a very traditional look and no smudging. 

Writers often point out that this pen feels comfortable in their hands. It has a rubber grip and a good retraction mechanism. 

5. Pilot FriXion ColorSticks Erasable Gel InkStick Pens

These pens hold the distinction of being erasable, which is rare to find with gel pens. They come in many colors, and it has a fine tip for detail writing. These pens leave behind no smudging or residue, even when you erase with them.

For the feel and comfort, the pens have a rubberized grip and are quite lightweight, which some writers enjoy.

Sale PILOT FriXion ColorSticks Erasable Gel Ink Stick Pens, Fine Point, Assorted Color Inks, 16-Pack (10367)
  • PILOT FRIXION COLORSTICKS: These pens write smooth & erase clean with Pilot’s unique thermo-sensitive gel ink. No wear or tear so you can erase & rewrite until it’s right without ruining the page.
  • UNLIMITED DO-OVERS: FriXion ColorStick pens feature a slim, non-rolling capped barrel design & are available in 16 stunning gel ink colors. Ideal for homework, grading or creating bullet journal spreads.
  • WRITE & CREATE FEARLESSLY: If you love FriXion erasable ink pens & markers, you’ll want to try Pilot’s full line of erasable Clickers, ColorSticks, Fineliners, Colors Marker Pens, & Highlighters.
  • TRUSTED QUALITY: We’ve been making pens for over 100 years. Whether you’re taking notes, stocking up on school or office supplies, or writing in a bullet journal, Pilot has the perfect pen for you!
  • POWER TO THE PEN: Pilot makes exceptional writing instruments to suit all your needs. We have fountain, ballpoint, retractable, erasable & gel ink pens, whiteboard markers & more for every writing style.

6. Poketo Apex Rollerball Gel Pens

If you’re looking for a pen with a distinctive look, this one is it. The sleek design and small-cap are different from most standard gel pens. Though it writes smoothly, it can sometimes catch and leave spaces where the ink doesn’t come out properly. 

Still, this pen works well for everyday use when you want something that has a different look and a thin point.

7. Pilot G-Tec C Gel Ink Rolling Ball Pens

The Pilot G-Tec C  is a gel pen with a rounded body and removable cap. it has a classy look with its jewel-cut dome, and minimal bleed-through is a pro for this pen. 

The very fine .4 mm tip writes smoothly for its size. Writers with small handwriting appreciate this ultra-fine point writing option, but others may find that the fine tip compromises the pen’s smoothness. The pen comes in a variety of colors.

Sale PILOT G-Tec-C Gel Ink Rolling Ball Pens, Ultra Fine Point (0.4mm), Assorted Color Inks, 10-Pack Pouch (35484)
  • PILOT G-TEC C: Designed for razor-sharp definition & extremely intricate, colorful writing, this premium gel ink pen features our unique smear-proof bio-polymer ink & a textured barrel for control.
  • PRECISE LINES ALL THE TIME: Excellent for art projects, bullet journaling & more, the ultra-fine point G-Tec C gel ink pen is available in 20 vibrant colors. Smear-proof ink won’t feather or smudge.
  • DESIGNED TO DELIGHT: A heritage of art, design, & quality runs through all Pilot products. From everyday highlighters & fine or extra fine point pens to fountain pens & more, Pilot has what you need.
  • TRUSTED QUALITY: We’ve been making pens for over 100 years. Whether you’re taking notes, stocking up on school or office supplies, or writing in a bullet journal, Pilot has the perfect pen for you!
  • POWER TO THE PEN: Pilot makes exceptional writing instruments to suit all your needs. We have fountain, ballpoint, retractable, erasable & gel ink pens, whiteboard markers & more for every writing style.

8. Pentel Energel Euro Needle Tip

The Pentel Energel Euro Needle Tip has a very smooth writing motion for an extra fine-tipped gel ink pen. The nib is just 0.35 mm, yet it writes very smoothly. This pen works well for drawing or writing fine lines.

One drawback of the Energel is that it has a plastic feel. However, writers who need the fine tip will appreciate this pen’s smoothness, lack of smudging and minimal bleed-through.

9. PaperMate InkJoy

With high ratings for smoothness, minimal smearing and practically no bleed-through, this gel pen marks most of the boxes. It creates smooth lines and has a medium tip that measures 0.7 mm. Ink flow rates very high for this pen. 

InkJoy is also a retractable pen. Several color options give you variety, and the pens have a wrap-around comfort grip. 

10. Pilot G2 Gel Pens

The Pilot G2 series is quite popular. It has smooth ink with minimal smudging. This makes a good pen for everyday use.

The Pilot G2 has a 0.7 mm point and is comfortable to hold because of a ridged rubber grip. Writers can see how much ink is left because it has a clear barrel. 

Pilot G2 Bold Pens, Premium Gel Pens, Bulk Pack Of 10 Pilot G2 Pens, 5 Black G-2 & 5 Blue Ink Pens, 1.0mm Medium Point, Retractable Rolling Ball, Office & School Pens for Women & Men. 15793
  • PILOT PENS BLACK & BLUE PENS G2 – The smooth writing pens, long-lasting Black and Blue Pilot G2 pens 1.0 mm features a comfortable rubber grip, makes it great for journaling & professional Office use.
  • LONGEST LASTING, REFILLABLE GEL INK – Proven to be the longest writing gel ink pen among top brands, the smooth-writing, retractable G2 gel ink pen is a classic choice for all your writing needs.
  • PERECTLY SUITED FOR YOU: If you love the original Pilot G2, you’ll want to try our full G2 line of Mini, Metallic, Mosaic, & Fashion gel ink pens in a variety of sizes, barrel designs & colors.
  • TRUSTED QUALITY: We’ve been making pens for over 100 years. Whether you’re taking notes, stocking up on school or office supplies, or writing in a bullet journal, Pilot has the perfect pen for you!
  • POWER TO THE PEN: Pilot makes exceptional writing instruments to suit all your needs. We have fountain, ballpoint, retractable, erasable & gel ink pens, whiteboard markers & more for every writing style.

11. BIC Gel-ocity

BIC’s take on the gel pen is Gel-ocity. This pen looks fairly standard, but it writes very smoothly. The medium-weight line makes it flow well, and that can help with writers who have messy handwriting.

This pen also has minimal bleed-through and smearing due to its quick-drying ink. It has a plastic body with a grip to add to the comfort of the pen. The lower cost of this pen makes it popular with those searching for a budget-friendly, good-writing gel pen.

12. Big Idea Design Ti Arto EDC

This pen is the one on the higher end of the luxury pen spectrum. It is a refillable design made from solid titanium and can fit many different types of ink refills. whether you want black or blue ink, you can have it with this pen.

The high-quality pen also has an ergonomic design. With a gel ink cartridge, it has minimal bleed-through and excellent smoothness. It is a little short as it comes, but it has an adjustable feature that lets you make it longer to fit your hand.

13. Cross Edge Capless Gel Ink Pen

The Cross Edge Capless Gel Ink Pen is a stainless steel pen with a thick barrel. It writes smoothly with a fast-drying ink to minimize smudging.

The design allows the user to change from a gel pen to a ballpoint pen by changing the refill. This makes it a favorite pen for office supplies and note-taking, because of its versatility. 

Sale Cross Edge Capless Gel Ink Pen, Nitron Blue
  • Capless gel ink pen technology
  • Versatile writer accepts both gel and jumbo ballpoint Cross refills
  • Features a patented click-and-slide mechanism
  • Encased in stylish metalic fusion resin
  • Lifetime Mechanical Guarantee

A Final Word on the Best Gel Roller Pens

If you are looking for the best pens to add to your office supplies, the ones on this list are a good choice

No matter what ink color you prefer, you can find a gel roller pen to fit your needs. The best gel roller pens work well for journaling, note-taking and office supplies, giving you a smooth writing experience. 

Each of the pens on this list has benefits. If you are looking for the best pens to add to your office supplies, the ones on this list are a good choice. Stock up your office and craft supply with these fun gel pens.

Want more? Check out our guide to the best fancy pens.

FAQs on the Best Gel Roller Pens

How do gel pens work?

Gel pens have a tiny metal ball in the tip that rolls when you write or draw. The pressure of the pen against the paper moves the ball, allowing it to pull fresh in out and onto the paper. Three tip sizes allow writers to write everything from notes to calligraphy.

What are the best roller gel pens?

The best roller gel pens are pens that write smoothly with minimal bleed-through and smudging. The best gel pen is also one that feels comfortable in your hand.

Pen Buyer’s Guide Resources

Rollerball Vs Ballpoint Pens

Fancy Pens You’ll Love Writing With

Why Is The Montblanc Ballpoint Pen So Expensive?

What Is The Smoothest Pen to Write With?

Best Pens for Writing

Join over 15,000 writers today

Get a FREE book of writing prompts and learn how to make more money from your writing.

Success! Now check your email to claim your prompts.

  • Nicole Harms has been writing professionally since 2006. She specializes in education content and real estate writing but enjoys a wide gamut of topics. Her goal is to connect with the reader in an engaging, but informative way. Her work has been featured on USA Today, and she ghostwrites for many high-profile companies. As a former teacher, she is passionate about both research and grammar, giving her clients the quality they demand in today’s online marketing world.

    View all posts

14 Best Gel Pens Reviewed and Rated in 2021

If you are looking for pens that allow you to draw sharp lines, gel pens are your best option! Not only that it lets you write neatly, but the tips of high-quality gel pens glide smoothly on paper.

Available in different color options, the ink of a gel pen is typically opaque. As a matter of fact, many creative individuals also use this for their art projects and bullet journaling apart from note-taking and signing documents.

Nowadays, gel pens come with different tip sizes and color choices to suit specific tasks. For that, let me share with you some of the best gel pens that you can use for writing, art projects, or both!

Best Gel Pen Reviews

1. Paper Mate 1951636 InkJoy Gel Pens

With 14 colors in a pack, Papermate gel pens are popular among office workers, bullet journal practitioners, crafters, and students. This speaks volumes about this product’s performance. Allow me to show you its features so you can understand why it is beneficial to you.

The main highlight of this gel pen is the ink quality. For one, I’m impressed that none of the colors in this set look similar. For another, even a light color like yellow is highly vivid and readable on paper.

Featuring excellent ink for writing and decorating bullet journals, I find the colors are especially useful when I want to underline or color-code tasks in my planner. Also, I never experienced any skipping issues even after using this for months. Thus, it saves me from the trouble of going back to redo my writing.

More than that, these gel pens help me keep the pages of my notebook neat. The inks dry almost immediately, and I don’t accidentally smudge my writing nor bleed through the next page.

Meanwhile, the tip of each pen is stable and sturdy. In conjunction with the lightweight body, the pen gives me absolute control over my strokes. Moreover, it prevents hand cramps when I’m writing for long hours.

If you are an artist or archivist, keep in mind that the inks are not acid-free. Hence, it is not suitable for commissioned artworks or works you need to archive. This set is best used for everyday writing and casual sketching.


  • Excellent bleeding and smudging prevention
  • Has smooth-flowing inks
  • Useful for writing, bullet journaling, and sketching
  • Offers unique vivid colors
  • Gives you full control over your strokes


  • The inks are not acid-free

Truly, this color gel pen set makes studying and working fun and efficient. Whether you use it to underline your notes or decorate your journal, the quick-drying ink ensures that your notebooks are neat!

2. Aen Art 4336949552 Glitter Gel Pens

Are you looking for some creative spark? You can never go wrong with this set of glitter gel pens! Earning many gel pen aficionados’ seal of approval, each glitter pen in this set features a distinct color.

A great addition to my arts and crafts supplies, I mainly use these pens for making personalized greeting cards, hand-lettering, and illustrations. Apart from the glitters, the vibrant colors give a nice coverage. Moreover, I can produce commissioned artworks with these pens because the inks are fade-proof.

My experience in using these pens has been generally positive, especially when I tested them on different papers. The tips are stable and solid but they glide so well on textured paper, smooth cardstock, journals, and notebooks. At the same time, the inks flow consistently out of the tip.

Making neat illustrations and journal entries is achievable with these pens. Due to the inks’ quick-drying nature, I’m happy to share that left-handed writers and artists will enjoy using them. Because the inks are bleed-proof, the backside of my journal pages remains clean and ready to use.

This gel pen set scores high where comfort is concerned. The rubber grip keeps the pen from slipping when my hand gets a little sweaty. Plus, I don’t need to use force to remove the cap or put it back on. The cap snaps back onto the pen securely, ensuring that the ink and tip are protected.

Considering that this set has a hundred colors, the pens do not have any labels to indicate the name of the hue. To avoid confusion, I had to label each pen myself and swatch them. This way, I can tell which color or shade I want to use.


  • The ink flow is consistent on most papers
  • Offers 100 unique glitter colors
  • Useful for various art projects
  • Helps achieve neat writing and artwork
  • Very comfortable to use


  • Does not indicate the name of the color

Providing a wide range of glittery colors, this set is one of the best gel pens for coloring and sketching. Each pen possesses top-quality ink that guarantees no dull moments when you make art!

3. Taotree 662964 Glitter Gel Pens

Whether it’s sketching, card-making, or embellishing your bullet-journals, you can bring your unique ideas to life with this set of shiny colored gel pens. Aside from the wide range of colors, this non-toxic product is suitable for children!

One of the things that I love about the glitter gel pen set is that the shiny color makes my artworks more eye-catching. Impressively, the colors never fade on paper because of the acid-free ink formula. Hence, I use these pens for both personal projects and commissioned pieces.

Another strength of this product is the smooth ink flow, which lets me write and sketch without getting distracted by skipping issues. Even though the inks seem juicy, I’m amazed that they dry pretty quickly. Regardless of the paper I use, the gel ink hardly smeared or bled through.

The pen comes with a soft rubber grip that keeps it from slipping from my sweaty hand. Alongside the sturdy tip, using the pen for long hours is painless! Usually, I’m annoyed when the cap is hard to remove but with this bunch, I never have to exert too much effort!

As much as I love the vibrant colors, they seem to run out fast. However, this is a common issue with this ink type. Taking to account its affordable price tag, I was not really short-changed.


  • Has shiny, vibrant colors
  • Suitable for children and adults
  • Never skips, bleed, or smear
  • Ensures that colors will never dull
  • Makes writing and sketching painless

More than just a decorative set of tools, this set is the top choice for fade-proof glittery inks. Optimal for any type of paper, there is no limit in what you can do with these gel pens!

4. Tanmit 4336945581 Gel Pens Set

Unlike a regular ballpoint pen, this pack of gel pens gives you ample ink colors to decorate your journal, highlight important text, color-code tasks, and create artworks. Despite its affordable price, its quality exceeds expectations.

Composed of 36 gel pens, the set gives me a handful of standard colors, metallics, neons, and pastels to help me show different styles and moods in my illustrations. The consistent flow of ink helps me create crisp details and write continuously. Besides, let me assure you that these pens are non-toxic and safe for children.

Besides adding a splash color to my otherwise dull notes and journal entries, the acid-free inks preserve the vibrant hues for a long time. This is welcoming news for professional crafters and artists who plan to use gel pens for the artworks they want to sell.

Functionality-wise, the fine tips glide well on most types of paper. On the other hand, the pen’s body has a rubber grip. As a result, the combination of all these features makes it easier for me to control my strokes so I can sketch with more precision.

Just be careful as you might smear the inks. I noticed that the inks do not dry fast enough. While testing these pens, I also found that the inks bleed through thin papers. However, I don’t think this will cause a big problem if the pages of your journal or notebook are thick.


  • Ideal for precise drawing
  • Includes different types of gel inks
  • Child-friendly gel pens
  • Glides smoothly on any paper
  • Effectively prevents discoloration


  • The ink tends to smear
  • May bleed through paper

Affordable and dependable, these are the best gel pens for drawing that boast smooth-flowing inks and good ergonomics. Featuring fine-tips and vibrant colors, you will never have a hard time sketching intricate details!

5. Daskid DGP-4848 Color Artist Gel Pen Set

With this gel pen set, the word “complete” is an understatement as it gives you so much more. Besides the usual ink colors, it includes metallics, glitter, pastel, and neon pens. Even better, each gel pen comes with a refill!

In my experience, the gel ink never clogs or skips when I tested it. Thanks to its fine tip size, I can create crisp lines and write neatly. If I’m using a ruled notebook, I can fit my penmanship between the lines.

As for coloring, the ink lays down smoothly without hints of streaks. On white paper, the gel pens appear bright and opaque. Meanwhile, the metallic and glitter pens make my artworks and letterings stylish. Having a choice of pastel and neon colors means that I can experiment with my style when I doodle or color my artwork.

Holding the pen feels light and comfortable, allowing me to take notes and finish an artwork with ease. The pen’s transparent body allows me to see how much ink I have left for a on-time refill. Another reason to love this set is that it comes with a case to keep gel pens organized.

For left-handed writers, watch out for smearing issues since the gel ink does not dry quickly. Other than that, I think this gel pen set works well with any notebooks, bullet journals, sketchbooks, or adult coloring books.


  • Offers a wide variety of gel inks
  • Has a smooth ink flow
  • Perfect for writing and art projects
  • Provides ink refills
  • Includes a case to keep the pens organized

Bringing out the creative side in everyone, this set offers the best gel pens for art. Suitable for any drawing and writing surface, the combination of smooth ink flow and superb pen ergonomic makes your work a whole lot easier to accomplish!

6. Reaeon Gel Pens

Here’s another rainbow set of gel pens that I highly recommend for any type of task. Besides the usual mix of standard colors, metallics, neons, and pastels, what sets this product apart is its neon-glitter and swirl pens.

If you ask me, my favorite is the swirl pens as they change colors as I switch directions. Equally interesting, the neon-glitter pens are both bright and shimmery. With these two alone, I can produce various effects when I sketch or color my artworks.

In the same vein, the others are just as vibrant and opaque, providing me good coverage. Any pen I use from this set, the gel ink is generally dependable. None of the pens skipped, smeared, nor bled when I tested them. As for longevity, the acid-free inks safeguard my artworks against discoloration.

Speaking of ink, I love that this set comes with refills. Luckily, the pen itself is not difficult to dismantle if I want to replace the inks. Even though the pens do not have a rubber grip, they are all surprisingly comfortable to use.

However, the ink runs out faster compared to other brands. Of course, the refills prolong the life of these pens but I wish I would not have to replace the ink when I have only used it for a couple of months.


  • Lets you explore various color effects
  • Has opaque colors for solid coverage
  • No skipping, bleeding or smearing issues
  • Provides gel ink refills
  • Easy and comfortable to use

For those who love to experiment with colors, this set is an awesome addition to your gel pen collection. Any writer or artist will find this useful for color-coding notes, coloring, sketching, and adorning their journal with one-of-a-kind inks!

7. Sharpie 2096159 S-Gel

Designed by a well-known brand, Sharpie offers a dozen black gel pens in a pack. Whether you are buying for your co-workers or for personal use, this product is one of the practical options you can find in most retail stores.

Typically used as an office pen, I particularly like this for signing documents, writing on cheques, and note-taking. The rich black gel ink gives my signature and penmanship a professional look. With a medium point size, I can write legibly in my notebook.

For a writer who always jots down notes quickly, I’m amazed that the pen can keep up with my pace without skipping. Meanwhile, the gel ink’s quick-drying formula ensures my notebook is free of smudges and bleeding. Even after applying a highlighter over my paragraphs, the ink does not smear!

Looking at this product, I like that this retractable pen does not look cheap even though the price is very affordable. To release the tip, I just have to press the button at the top. Equipped with a contoured rubber grip, I could go for hours jotting down my thoughts without hurting my hand.

After using this for a couple of months, the only issue I found is that the pen can get scratchy. Sometimes, the line I draw gets thinner when I hold the pen at a certain angle. Since I don’t use these pens to draw, I’m not bothered by these issues.


  • Suitable for note-taking
  • Can keep up with your writing speed
  • Guarantees mess-free work
  • Has a beautiful pen design
  • Not painful to write with


  • Can be scratchy at times
  • The line thickness is not always consistent

Factoring in the quality and the price, these are the best gel pens for writing. Highly dependable, the quick-drying ink averts bleeding and accidental smearing.

8. Soucolor Gel Pens

Although advertised as gel pens for coloring, this kid-friendly set has plenty of use. One gel pen pack includes 60 vibrant colors with ample options from metallics, pastels, rainbows, and many more!

Aside from taking advantage of the smooth-flowing gel ink for hand lettering and doodling, I use these pens to jazz up my bullet journal. Not only my to-do list looks more engaging, but I can also assign a color for a specific category. Safe to use on notebooks, the gel ink stays on top of the writing surface and never bleeds to the backside of the page.

Furthermore, these color gel pens show no sign of skipping if I change the speed or direction of my strokes. Meanwhile, the tip size supports neat penmanship and illustrations. I can draw sharp lines with consistent thickness.

Adding to the overall pleasant experience, each gel pen is wrapped with the so-called comfort grip. Besides keeping my hands from getting sore, the plastic body does not wiggle too much when I hold it. Because of that, it is much easier to draw more precisely.

As a bonus, the manufacturer includes a storage case where I can organize my gel pens. This way, I can carry them when I travel without having to buy another pen case! However, keep in mind that the gel ink is not exactly quick-drying and prone to smearing if you are not careful.


  • Multipurpose gel pen set for all ages
  • No skipping when you change the speed or directions
  • Adds vibrant hues to your art and writing
  • Optimal for precise drawing
  • Includes storage casing


  • The gel ink takes a little longer to dry

Hitting the sweet spot of what’s required of illustration and writing, this set of vibrant colored pens contains high-quality gel ink. Apart from precise drawing, these pens make mundane tasks more enjoyable.

9. BIC Gel-Ocity Gel Pens

When you’re studying, reading your notes in black ink can be uninspiring. If you want to make your writing more memorable, I recommend this pack of gel pens for taking notes. Affordable for students and professionals, it provides enough color choices to organize your ideas.

As with the rest of the pens, even a light-colored ink like tangerine is vibrant on my notebook. To make the most out of the vivid ink colors, I use them to decorate my notes and bullet journal. I think any writer will find the hues fun to work with, especially when editing long documents.

Sporting a versatile medium point, I can write paragraphs, underline important text, and create bold headings. Whether I’m using a cheap composition notebook or a fancy journal with mildly textured pages, the ink flows out from the tip with good consistency. Boasting quick-drying ink, left-handed people can forget about smearing!

In terms of format, the pen’s ergonomics ranks high on my list. The entire length of the body is equipped with an easy-to-grip plastic that gives me full control. Since this is a retractable pen, I can just click the button to release or retract the tip. No matter how long I use this, the tip never gets stuck!

The only downside is that these gel pens tend to bleed or ghost when used on slightly thin paper. Given all the good qualities, I can overlook this issue and use notebooks with thicker pages. By the way, let me just add that these pens seem to contain more ink compared to other brands!


  • Great for studying, editing, and note-taking
  • Makes penmanship readable
  • Has quick-drying ink formula
  • Very easy to control
  • Contains more gel ink


  • Prone to bleeding and paper ghosting

Schoolwork can be a drag but you can always make it exciting and memorable with this set of gel pens! Manufacturing superb-quality gel pens for students, this brand knows exactly what you need to study.

10. TUL Retractable Gel Pens

While these professional gel pens look gorgeous, the product’s performance is on point. Giving you 14 unique color choices, this set of retractable pens is worth your money.

Note-taking is a basic task but these gel pens make it pleasurable. Measuring 0.7 mm, I find the tip size optimal for long text, decorative headers, mind-mapping, and casual sketching. All colors are vivid, which makes my notes readable. That said, I don’t have to be a pro artist to style my journal!

Like most bullet-point pens, the tip is very stable and sturdy. When I write, it releases the gel ink smoothly, letting the pen glide on paper. Furthermore, it ensures that the lines have consistent thickness even when I apply a little more pressure.

Despite using these gel pens for months, their ink quality and performance have not changed since I first bought them. I have never run across issues like skipping or smearing, which is pretty common with this ink type. Also, the ink is fade-resistant. I can go over my notes years later and still be able to read them!

Built to last long, the pen’s body never breaks even if I drop it several times. Since the body is smooth, I’m glad the manufacturer attached a rubber grip to prevent the pen from sliding. Pressing the button to release or retract the tip does not require too much strength.

Although I love this set, some people decide based on the product’s price since it is a little expensive. The other thing you need to be aware of is that the ink takes time to dry on glossy sheets. Based on experience, these pens are best suited for printer papers, bullet journals, notebooks, and sketch papers.


  • Appropriate for note-taking and sketching
  • Contains fade-resistant gel ink
  • Writes smoothly on most papers
  • Has elegant pen design
  • Has a sturdy build


  • A little expensive
  • Takes a while to dry on glossy paper

Easily the top gel pens for any office or school work, this product nails both functionality and aesthetic. If you don’t want to waste a page of your notebook because of smearing issues, then this set is the right one for you!

11. Pilot 31294 G2 Premium Gel Pens

Pilot gel pens have fans across the globe, which says a lot about their quality! For those who want a finer tip size, this would be a great choice!

Looking at the selection of ink colors, I like that the set includes five black ink pens and a wide array of hues. I can write paragraphs using the black ones, while the rest are for mind-mapping, crossing out items on a list, or organizing tasks per category. Still, I can technically write with any pen since each ink color is vibrant and opaque.

Dispensing gel ink very smoothly, drawing crisp and neat lines is way easier with these rollerball pens. Cursive or block letters, my penmanship looks clean and legible. The fine tip allows me to fill out forms that usually provide small writing spaces on each page.

Unlike other sets that only include 1 refill per color, this set is my favorite because I can buy ink refills as often as I need. Beyond that, these gel pens are for keeps because they are made of durable plastic. No matter how many times I dropped these pens, the mechanism that releases and retracts the tip never breaks!

To tell you the truth, I have no complaints about the performance of the gel pen. However, I hope the manufacturer considers adding some light shades like yellow, lime green, or powder blue. These hues are useful for underlining!


  • Highly durable gel ink pens
  • Promotes neat and legible penmanship
  • Provides more black pens
  • Can be refilled as many times as you like
  • Suitable for journaling and mind-mapping

Made by a brand known for designing innovative writing instruments, this set gives you exceptional gel pens for bullet journals. With refills readily available in many offices and school supplies, consider these gel pens if you’re thinking of long-term use!

12. Arteza ARTZ-8001 Gel Pens

Ideal for gel pen art, Arteza’s box of ballpoint pens is packed with colors that display beautifully on white and black papers. Of course, this set can also be used for school, work, journaling, and crafts!

First, I have great news for parents who are looking for gel pens for kids. These inks are non-toxic; therefore, you can let your children go wild when they make art. Professional artists, on the other hand, find the acid-free gel ink beneficial as it retains the brightness of their illustrations.

As for me, I rely on these gel pens’ smooth flow of ink and quick-drying capabilities for distraction-free sketching. I don’t like dealing with smudging because it is so difficult to correct. Likewise, I hate going over the line I just drew because the ink skipped. Hence, choosing this gel pen set for illustration is a no-brainer.

We all know that the tip can dent the page when we press the pen harder. Luckily, the gel ink pen only requires minimal pressure when I draw and color. That said, I love using them to add highlights or outlines to my colored pencil or watercolor illustrations.

Besides preventing the gel pen from rolling off the table, the triangular body gives me full control over my strokes. From what I have observed, only the metallic ink pens seem to flow a little less freely but that does not mean that they don’t work!


  • Works on dark and light papers
  • Can be used alongside colored pencils or watercolors
  • Safe for children to use
  • Prevents skipping and smearing issues
  • Ensures that the ink stay vibrant for a long time


  • The metallics do not flow as smoothly as the rest

Appropriate for kids or adults, this box of gel pens offers a wide range of inks to suit any creative project. Best of all, the product’s ability to preserve the vibrant colors makes it an excellent choice for commissioned artworks.

13. Feela FAGP360 Gel Pens Set

For some color pen addicts, 100 gel pens may not be enough. If that sounds like you, then check out Feela’s set of 180 ink colors. As a bonus, this brand provides a refill for each color!

Fans of metallic and glitter ink will love that this set includes plenty of shimmery ink choices to choose from. Along with the smooth flow, each gel pen contains opaque ink that guarantees solid coverage. At the same time, I can keep my notebook neat because the ink hardly smears or bleeds through the page.

Thanks to the vibrant ink, I also use the gel pen to jot down notes, mind-map and organize a to-do list. On that note, the tip size lets me write long text and stylish headers. The vibrant ink color ensures my notes are visible yet easy on the eyes.

Design-wise, the pen is comfortable to hold, while its plastic barrel is pretty much unbreakable. Moreover, the manufacturer included a plastic case with trays that hold each gel pen in place. The way they are organized makes it easy for me to see the colors I need to use.

While using them, I ran into a few minor issues. Some of the metallic ink pens look more like glitter. People who are used to working with these types of inks can tell the difference. The other issue is that some of the caps are hard to remove from the pens.


  • Includes refill for each gel ink pen
  • Shows up vibrantly on paper
  • Offers more color options
  • Convenient for coloring and note-taking
  • Includes a plastic case with trays


  • Some metallics look like glitters
  • Some caps are hard to remove

We have all heard of the saying “the more, the merrier,” and this is especially true for this product. With quick-drying ink, you can work with each gel pen without making a mess!

14. Paper Mate 1956277 InkJoy Gel Pens

Owning dozens of gel pens can be wasteful, especially if you only need a few colors to work. Perhaps this pack of four gel pens is sufficient for your needs.

As you can see, each gel pen in this set has a unique color that I normally use to cross out an item on a list, mind-mapping, or write a thoughtful note to thank my co-workers. Somehow, my penmanship is more readable using these pens. Moreover, the vibrant ink helps me immediately find the text I underlined on a book page.

Knowing that neatness is important, this brand ensures that the ink dries fast. Any left-handed writer will enjoy using this since they don’t have to adjust how they hold the gel pen to avoid smearing. Although the gel pen contains juicy ink, I can use a page back-to-back since it does not bleed.

Ink flow is probably this set’s strongest suit. Backing this claim, I have used every gel pen from the set and have not seen the ink skip. After using this for a long time, I’m not even close to emptying it.

Like any pen made by this, I love the cute plastic exterior. Besides its aesthetic appeal, the gel pen feels comfortable to grip. I can work for hours without feeling the slightest pain in my hand.

For everyday use, this gel pen set meets all the criteria that students, writers, and office workers need to perform their tasks efficiently. But since the ink is not acid-free, I’m afraid this set is not suitable for artworks that you plan to sell.


  • Contains plenty of ink
  • Suitable for long hours of writing
  • Guarantees legible penmanship
  • Never skips, smears, or bleeds
  • Useful for mind-mapping or organizing tasks


  • The ink is not fade-proof

While not all of us may agree that this is the top-rated gel pen brand, I do not doubt its performance. Offering four vibrant and distinct hues, this product is a great choice for everyday note-taking and bullet journaling.

What to Look for When Buying Gel Pens

If you are guilty of impulsively buying pens, I’ll be the last person to judge you because I know how you feel. After all, most of these gel pen sets are affordable. But how many of them end up collecting dust on our shelves?

Instead of acting on our impulses, let’s make our next purchase more intentional. To start, let me give you some things to consider.

Ink quality

At the very basic, the gel pen you buy should be free of bleeding, smearing, and skipping issues. Most gel pen brands have perfected the ink flow but the drying time tends to vary. You don’t have to be left-handed to choose quick-drying ink. Artists, for one, use a gel pen or two alongside watery mediums.

These days, you’ll find acid-free gel ink but it may not be a necessity if you just want to write your ideas before you forget them. However, they will come in handy for anyone who wants to archive their work or sell illustrations.

Color options

One advantage that a gel pen has over a ballpoint is the variety of hues and style. Besides the standard colored ink, manufacturers crafted metallics, neons, pastels, rainbows, and glitters.

Thus, gel pens have become an alternative to colored pencils and markers for many coloring book enthusiasts. Most products are packaged in sets of 60 or 100. But if you only need to underline a text on a page, you can go for a set of four.

Gel pen brands offer fine, medium, and bold points, which is a lot more than ballpoint. For writing and basic coloring, this selection is sufficient. Of course, some brands make extra-fine tips like the Pilot Hi-Tec-C. For artists and designers who need a wider variety of tip sizes, felt-tip pen sets are your best bet.


Versatile in design and ink quality, gel ink pens are the go-to instruments for writing, coloring, and sketching. But if you look closely, each gel pen is more suited for a specific use. For example, a set of 4 multicolor gel pens can serve as highlighters but they are not appropriate for document-signing.

Pen design

When buying a pen, people tend to look at the color or the size of the tip but ergonomics also play an important role. Our hands have distinct features, which is why we also grip the same pen differently.

Moreover, some of us have health conditions that make holding a pen difficult. I highly recommend that you test out different pen types. If opening a cap is hard for you, try looking for pens with a twist mechanism or retractable ones.

Other Important Factors to Consider

What is the best gel pen? Who is this for?

To meet the minimum requirement, good gel pens should at least have a smooth-flowing and quick-drying ink. The top-rated gel pens, however, go above and beyond in serving your specific needs.

For instance, an acid-free gel pen adds value to the artwork that illustrators want to sell. Meanwhile, the glittery and metallic ones make your bullet journals more stylish. Non-toxic gel pen sets, on the other hand, make art projects safe for children. More recently, manufacturers have invented an erasable gel pen that you can erase with a special rubber.

How does it work?

The secret behind a gel pen’s opaque and vivid color is the water-based gel’s ability to carry dyes and pigments. Classified as a rollerball, the best gel ink pens have smooth ink flow similar to a fountain pen.

What are the different types of gel pens?

Every gel pen in the market works more or less the same but there are some minor differences. Here are the different types of gel pens:

Why do you need gel pens?

If you want smooth flowing ink without applying too much pressure while you write, the fountain pen is an option. But fountain pens can be inconvenient to pack and carry when you’re traveling. Hence, many people prefer to use a gel pen. I, for one, find this type of pen to be more low maintenance. Plus, most brands offer hundreds of color choices to choose from!

Frequently Asked Questions

What are the most trusted gel pen brands?

Every gel pen I reviewed for this article has been tried and tested, which is why I recommend them. Gel pen fans love Paper Mate, Aen Art, Taotree, Tanmit, DasKid, Reaeon, Sharpie, Soucolor, Bic, TUL, Pilot, Arteza, and Feela.

Naturally, you will find more products and variants that did not appear on my list like erasable gel pen sets, Tekwriter gel pens, Pilot Hi-Tec-C, and Pentel Energel in many gel pen reviews and forums like Reddit. Needless to say, they are worth checking out!

Are gel pens good for writing?

Although gel pens are similar to a rollerball pen, the gel ink glides smoother and dry faster. Some left-handed people have reportedly experienced smearing issues but this usually depends on the brand they bought. If you are left-handed, you’ll find several fast-drying gel pen products that are guaranteed smear-free!

Can I use gel pens on canvas?

Yes, you can use gel ink on canvas, thanks to its quick-drying abilities. Just make sure that the paints are completely dried before applying gel pens. That said, make sure to use archival ink to prevent discoloration.

How to make gel pens work again?

Reviving a gel pen is super easy! Using a dropper, add a drop of water into the cartridge. Then close the pen, shake it and then test it. Repeat the process if it does not work.

If this method does not work, try soaking the entire gel pen in warm water.

Do gel pens bleed through the paper?

It is unlikely for a rollerball gel ink to bleed through paper, even for the smoothest gel pen. The properties of the gel ink allow it to stay on top of the paper’s surface, rather than soak the paper. At most, you will see some mild ghosting at the back of the page. The intensity of the ghosting will vary depending on the weight of the paper.


Testing all the gel pen sets that I could get my hands on has been pretty challenging. I don’t think I have a single favorite since they have their specialties.

A gel pen with a fine tip may be excellent for writing and detail work but not for coloring. If you want to cover larger areas faster, a medium or bold tip will make your job easier. Thus, we gravitate towards different products.

Although I encourage you to explore other brands, keep in mind that cheap gel pen sets have inks that tend to clump. Before you buy anything, be sure to check out reviews so you can find the best gel pens for your needs!

The Top 7 Gel Pens We Love for 2019 – Ink+Volt

Gel pens may not be your everyday pen, but they sure are fun.

Ready to meet your journaling, doodling, art, and notetaking needs – despite their idiosyncrasies – everyone should have a good gel pen or two in their life.

That’s because they’re a very versatile writing tool. Plus, they come in a beautiful array of colors and sparkly, opalescent, metallic, and glitter options (woo!) that are sure to brighten your day and writing. Gel pens are perfect for breaking up the monotony of writing when you get tired of working with the usual black, blue, or red pen colors.

(Gel pens still come in the basic color selections too, to meet your everyday writing needs, but we love gel pens for adding a dash of color to the day.)

The ink that makes a gel pen a gel pen is the nearly the same ink that is used in a rollerball or ballpoint pen. But with gel pens, the ink is suspended in a water-based gel; it is thick and opaque, and shows up more clearly on dark or slick surfaces. The pigments used to make gel ink are also thicker than other inks, resulting in the stronger colors. Which is why you have so many colors and options to choose from!

We can thank the Sakura Color Products Corporation (a Japanese company) for first rolling out the gel pen in 1984, which was introduced to America in the late 80’s with the debut of the Gelly Roll pen.

Today, Gelly Roll pens come in classic, moonlight (brilliant/bright colors), stardust (glittery), metallic, gold shadow and silver shadow.

If you don’t use gel pens consistently or are skeptical about investing in a pack, we strongly recommend using gel pens versus another type of pen, when you really want to do any of these things:

  • Write with bold lines
  • Write using strong colors
  • Write on dark paper or surfaces
  • Write on a smooth, non-absorbent material
  • Achieve a similar writing effect to paint markers, but desire something that can draw finer lines, is smaller to hold, and/or doesn’t require shaking (unless they get jostled and need to get started again)
  • Write with heavy in but with fewer chances of bleed through, compared to a fountain pen
  • Use a pen without a strong smell
  • Mix up your day with a fun pen and fun colors!

Gel pen ink is archival, fade resistant, waterproof, and chemical proof/non-toxic, and washes off clothes and skin more easily than non-gel, oil based inks. All of which are highly desirable qualities.

Unfortunately, some of what makes gel pens so awesome and versatile can also make them annoying to use, being one of the more finicky pens.

  • The ink doesn’t dry as quickly as other inks, causing it to smear if you’re not careful and don’t give it enough time to dry. This makes it a more challenging pen for left handed writers to write with.
  • The ink can skip (not all the time though) because the ink may not distribute evenly on the ball as it comes out of the tip. This is less likely to happen if you’ve kept the pen in a straight up-down position.
  • The pens don’t last as long as your rollerball or ballpoint because they use more ink when being used (but you do get that strong, bold line as a tradeoff!).

Despite the drawbacks, if you know what to watch out for, you can more happily use these types of pens with ease.

Our favorite gel pens

Because you have a big selection of gel pens to choose from, we’ve pared the list below down to our favorites. We’re recommending specific gel pen brands below and the best situations to use them in.

This list is a great guide to start from, but of course, it’s best to test out as many gel pens as you can to find the one (or many ones) that work best for you.

  1. Uni-ball Signo DX UM-151 Gel Ink Pen – 0.38 mm comes highly recommended because it has a fine tip and is very durable. Yes, it comes in basic black, but also green black, lavender black, brown black, and bordeaux black (among many other color selections!). A great option for everyday writing, but with the color selection available, you can also use this pen for journaling, writing in your planner, and any art or doodling projects.
  2. Zebra Sarasa Push Clip Gel Pen is perfect for those of you who like a retractable gel pen. Satisfyingly clickable, it also has a rubber grip, making it comfortable and practical to carry around, write with, and use daily. Pilot also makes a retractable, fine tip gel pen: Pilot G2 Retractable Premium Gel Ink Roller Ball Pens.
  3. Pilot FriXion Erasable Gel Pens – 3-Pack. Need an erasable gel pen? Ideal for using in your Ink+Volt planner or taking notes, this erasable gel pen will be a life saver (no more messy strikethroughs). The eraser works by using heat, so the faster you erase and create friction, the faster your unwanted work erases away. This isn’t the best ink to write with if you leave your writing out in the sun or in a hot car because the words may disappear, but it can be fixed by putting the paper in the freezer. With that one caveat in mind, once you try this gel pen, you’ll wonder how you went through life without the ability to write and erase so easily.
  4. Gel Reminiscence Classic Colors Set has fast-drying water-based gel ink, that makes the writing experience evev smoother. With a cap and rubber grip, this classic color set is very practical.
  5. For a metallic gel pen writing experience, we love the Pilot G2 Metallic Pens – Assorted Color 8-pack and Gelly Roll Metallic 10-Pack. The Pilot combines the practicality of being retractable and having a rubber grip, with a subtle metallic ink (ideal if you want to mix it up, but not too much). The Pilot has a 0.7mm tip compared to the Gelly Roll’s 0.4mm tip. Though not retractable, the Gelly Roll has a cap and bold metallic colored ink that we love to use.
  6. Uni-ball Signo Broad UM-153 Gel Pen – White Ink. Writing on black or dark paper? Nothing will look cleaner than a beautiful white ink. Your writing and lettering will pop with this silky white ink, perfect for journaling, scrapbooking, or sending letters.
  7. If you’re someone who can never have too many gel pens, or you want the convenience of having an endless array of colors to choose from at any moment, the LolliZ 70 Gel Pens Tray Set and the Gelly Roll 74-Piece Gift Set are for you. The Gelly Roll set includes favorites like the gold/silver shadow, stardust, moonlight, metallic, and classic, while the LolliZ also has colors like neon and pastel to choose from. Draw and write to your heart’s content with these gel pen sets!
Caring for your favorite gel pens – it’s simple!

To make your gel pens last, store in any position (up or down) and always put the cap back on. That’s it! You’re ready to write, doodle, journal, and draw to your day away. Enjoy!

The best gel pen | FOX31 Denver

Which gel pen is best? 

Gel pens are a staple in schools and offices thanks to their bold colors and smooth writing style. They are great for making corrections or taking long-form notes. Compared with other types of pens, gel pens excel in their comfortability and practicality. 

Gel pens use water-based ink with a thicker consistency, giving gel pens their signature bold flare. Gel pen ink also comes in a wider variety of colors, perfect for artists and bullet-journalers. 

The top pick, the Moma Muji Gel Ink Ballpoint Pen 0.5mm, is a pen from a trusted stationery brand that will keep you writing comfortably for hours. 

What to know before you buy a gel pen 

Are gel pens better than other ink pens? 

When it comes to different types of pens, everyone that spends a lot of time writing will have their preference. The most common ink pens on the market are standard rollerball and ballpoint pens, which use fast-drying ink. Ballpoint pens use oil-based ink that is fast drying but prone to clumping, and rollerball pens use water-based ink that flows more freely. 

On the other hand, gel pens are almost a cross between the standard ballpoint and rollerball pen in design. The main area of differentiation is in the ink since gel pens use a gel-ink that is less likely to smudge or feather. 

If you are interested in comparing different ink pens, check out the complete BestReviews ink pen buying guide. 

What makes gel-ink different from regular ink? 

Gel ink is fast-drying ink that takes positive attributes from both water-based ink and oil-based ink. In a sense, gel-ink gives you the best of both worlds. Gel ink is bold like water-based ink and crisp like oil-based ink. Gel ink is also water-resistant once dried. 

Of course, as with anything, gel-ink does have its downsides. While gel-ink is fast-drying, it dries nowhere near as fast as oil-based ink. When writing with gel-ink, expect some mild feathering while writing. Bear in mind that feathering and smudging depend just as much on the paper quality that you are using as it does the pen. 

Are gel pens good to use for drawing or coloring? 

Thanks to the vast array of pigments available in gel-ink, gel pens have a virtually never-ending lineup of colors. Since gel ink also comes out bolder on paper, these pens are perfect for artwork. When using cells to draw or paint, consider opting for a larger size to give your work that vivid gel finish. 

What to look for in a quality gel pen


Gel pens come in various sizes, all of which are marked in millimeters. You should choose your pen’s point size based on where you will be using it. 

If you write small or often in languages such as Japanese or Mandarin Chinese, opting for a smaller point size is best as you will be able to register as small as you want. 0.5mm and under are great for these applications. 

If you prefer bold, thick strokes in your notes, then opt for a larger point size. Around 1.0mm is excellent for delivering writing that stands out. 

Color options 

If you love bullet-journaling, doodling, or creating artwork, you should find a pen that comes in lots of color options like Tadkin gel pens. 

Gel pens made for use in schools and offices, like the Pilot Juice Up, usually will come in just the ever-classic blue, black and red colors. 


Gel pens are renowned for their smooth writing experience, but all gel pens are not created equally. One thing to consider here is concerning the point size of the pen. With smaller point sizes, you will run the risk of a scratchy or forced writing experience. 

How much you can expect to spend on gel pens 

Gel pens start at around $12 and range up to $30 depending on brand and package quantity.

Gel pen FAQ

How do I reduce feathering and smudging while writing? 

A. The best thing to do to reduce feathering while writing is to change paper. The glossier paper will lead to a lot of smudges. If this isn’t an option, try writing with the side of your hand slightly elevated instead of directly on the paper. 

How do I check the ink in my gel pen? 

A. Checking the ink in your pen is as easy as looking at the cartridge. Some gel pens will even have a cartridge window so that you can gauge your ink level without opening the pen. 

What’s the best gel pen to buy?

Top gel pen 

Moma Muji Gel Ink Ballpoint Pen 0.5mm 

What you need to know: These pens from the famous Japanese brand Muji live up to the brand’s commitment to simple design and quality function. 

What you’ll love: Despite the small point size, these pens write effortlessly smoothly. The ink is fast-drying, so no need to worry about having a dirty hand or smudged page. 

What you should consider: It can be a bit expensive since these pens are a Japanese import. 

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon 

Top gel pen for the money

Pilot Juice Up 0.4 Retractable Gel Ink Pen 

What you need to know: These gel pens from Pilot are sure to juice up your writing. They are an excellent option for students. 

What you’ll love: Even with the small point size, these pens offer a smooth and precise writing experience. The pens have a stylish metal body. 

What you should consider: There is no way to check the ink level in the pen without taking the ink cartridge out. 

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon 

Worth checking out

Sharpie S-Gel Bold Point 1.0mm

What you need to know: These fan-favorite gel pens come from Sharpie, a trusted brand in stationery. They are great for use in the office. 

What you’ll love: The 1.0mm point size of these pens produce truly bold and beautiful writing. Since the point size is larger, the writing experience is ultra-smooth and comfortable. 

What you should consider: Because these pens are bolder, ink may bleed through to the other side of the page. Proceed with caution if you use notebooks. 

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon

Sign up here to receive the BestReviews weekly newsletter for useful advice on new products and noteworthy deals.

Addison Hoggard writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.

Copyright 2021 BestReviews, a Nexstar company. All rights reserved.

Close Modal

Suggest a Correction

Suggest a Correction

Which pen to choose for a first grader

How to choose a pen for a first grader? Is it worth it to specifically look for something special if you can buy the cheapest one, because the child will still lose it or break it? Our article contains answers to these questions.

Of course, yesterday’s preschooler needs to be provided with high-quality and convenient writing materials. Despite the general computerization, clear and legible handwriting is essential. In addition, writing is a great exercise for developing fine motor skills; when writing down the text with your own hand, the rules are remembered faster and better; many educators believe that calligraphy helps develop patience and accuracy in a child.

The most important thing in choosing a first grader pen

There are several important points to consider when choosing a first grader pen that is suitable for confident writing with a weak hand.

The child must develop the correct position of the hand and fingers, while avoiding fatigue and tension. The difficulty lies in the fact that primary school students (that is, children of 6–8 years old) have insufficiently developed hand muscles and coordination of fingers, and the hardening of the wrist bones has not been completed.The baby’s hands are not used to prolonged static loads. If the writing instrument is heavy or uncomfortable, fingers will quickly get tired, and the process itself will be associated with discomfort and cause rejection.

  • The most ergonomic is the triangular shape of the case. The pen should not be too thin or thick – otherwise the younger student will experience excessive stress.
  • While writing, the child’s fingers are still not very confident in holding the pen and are sweating from tension and excitement.Therefore, a rubber insert is optimal. The non-slip coating will help maintain the correct hand position.
  • Softness of writing is important. To make it easier for a first grader, buy a pen that doesn’t require much effort and will leave clear lines with light pressure. Models with oil ink are optimal.
  • The thickness of the line should be average in the range of the width of the trace from a regular ball rod: 0.5–1.5 mm.
  • The color of the paste ranges from deep purple to blue.As a rule, it is recommended to choose a shade that is not too dark, but also not overly light, which is clearly visible on the page. Check for smudges on the ink: write a few words and slide your finger over them.
  • Ask the teacher for writing requirements. Someone considers it right to choose a good ballpoint pen, others prefer that children write in gel, and still others require a certain color of ink.
  • No toys needed. Do not buy pens with bulky nibs like cartoon characters or other shapes.Such products are not suitable for teaching writing – they have a bad balance, they are inconvenient. Therefore, children’s fingers get too tired.
  • Do not buy pens if what you write can be erased immediately. Such models are not welcomed by teachers and interfere with the education of a responsible attitude to learning in younger students. The child must learn to write accurately and correctly the first time.

Gel or Roll On?

Ballpoint pens hold the lead today.Teachers prefer them to gel.

The difference lies in the structure of the nib: in the gel model, the ball is moved inside the nib and a thicker special ink is used. The ink supply mechanism also differs: in a ballpoint pen, liquid enters, obeying the force of gravity, through the ball; in gel – it penetrates through the capillaries of the rod.

Before oil-based ink was widely used, it was believed that gel-based instruments write more gently. But thick ink dries up faster and the nib mechanism gets stuck.

Antibacterial pens

Many children (and even adults) chew on writing utensils in thought. What kind of ballpoint pen you can choose for a first grader so that he does not drag it into his mouth is recommended by reviews on thematic parenting forums. Many people say that it is easier not to tug at the child all the time, but to purchase a product that will not harm health with such treatment. There are special models (for example, Attache Antibacterial A04), the body of which is made using a coating containing silver ions.Such paint will not harm even the baby and relieve his parents from the anxiety.

Pen-trainer for right-handed and left-handed people

The catalog of the online store, where you can use filters, noting the optimal qualities and characteristics, helps you choose the right and easy pen for your child. In this way, it is easy to find products designed specifically for first graders who have difficulty in developing their writing skills.

Ballpoint pens leave a mark on paper at any pressure and tilt.This results in the child continuing to write but holding the instrument incorrectly. To maintain and secure the correct position of the fingers and hand, offer the first grader the “Self-taught Pen” exercise machine. A special device will not allow the baby to get used to the wrong hand position. There are “self-taught pens” for right-handers and left-handers.

Fortunately, now they do not require retraining of little left-handers, forcing them to write with their right hand. Children with such a feature in a modern school are provided with the opportunity to study without psychological trauma, since it is not difficult to choose a good pen and other stationery.There are special models that take into account the manner of writing with the left hand: with a curved body and a special nib.

Types of writing pens

Even in our digital age, it is impossible to imagine a world without simple stationery pens for writing. Still some 20-30 years ago there were no such varieties. There were simple ballpoint pens in those days: red, blue, black and green. There were also ink pens that had to be manually refilled with ink. There were simple slate pencils, there were multi-colored pencils.There were markers.

Now there is everything described above for writing and drawing, and much more has appeared. Writing pens, which are far from one thousand years old, served as the prototype of pens. Once upon a time, runes were carved on stones, used tablets with wax and wrote on them with sticks in cuneiform, painted in caves. People have written and painted at all times. It was necessary to write down the necessary information, save it, transfer it.

A pen is essentially a writing instrument that leaves a trail of ink on the paper (or any other suitable surface).Let’s try to understand them briefly. So, the names and main differences of stationery pens for writing and drawing.

Types of stationery pens

Depending on the design of the product, used in the manufacture of materials, style and overall appearance, stationery pens for writing can be conditionally divided into the following types:

  • simple,
  • decorative,
  • author’s or design,
  • gift boxes,
  • souvenir.

These decorative cool bone-shaped pens like in the photo below will be a great little gift for a medical student, for example.

Types of office pens

The fountain pen has a metal nib that transfers ink to the paper. Can be refueled and non-refillable. In the first version, ink is filled into a reservoir inside and the product works like a regular ballpoint pen.Non-refillable fountain pens should be dipped in an inkwell when writing.

Ballpoint pen is a fountain pen, the principle of which is to transfer ink from a reservoir (a rod that can most often be replaced with a new one when the old ink runs out) onto paper using a rotating ball. As already understood, ink paste is used as a writing material. This design is very simple and for this reason ballpoint pens are relatively inexpensive and widely used throughout the world.

Drawing pen (ink liner) belongs to the professional tools for creating precise drafting work. Another name for such products is capillary pen . Inside the body of such a product is a can of ink. Such tools are necessary for professional use in the work of architects, designers, cartographers, engineers, graphic artists.

Marker is a special tool with which you can draw or write with paint.How does a felt-tip pen work? From the reservoir, paint flows into a porous material tip (nylon or felt), which is used to write or draw. By the way, markers and highlighters also belong to felt-tip pens.

Rollerball Pen or Gel Pen has a ballpoint nib at the end of the refill, but unlike simple ballpoint pens, gel or other water-based coloring liquid is used as a writing material. Gel pens are distinguished by their special subtlety of writing.Competes in popularity these days with ball counterparts. Colors can be very diverse. It is very easy and pleasant to write with them, as well as with fountain pens.

Handle – Gosstandart

Pen – a writing instrument with which you can leave an ink mark on a surface (usually on paper). Ballpoint and gel pens sometimes use erasable ink.


Writing pens have been known since ancient times, from about 3000 BC.e., and were carved from reed stems. From the VI century BC. NS. feathers have been used by many civilizations for over a thousand years. The best specimens were made from the feathers of swans, turkeys and geese, as having the largest feathers in their wings. Archaeological finds in the ruins of Pompeii include bronze versions of feathers, but they did not become widespread until the end of the 18th century. A century later, fountain pens appeared, the capillary system for which was invented by L.E. Waterman, a New York stationery dealer.Around 1944, the Hungarian Laszlo Biro, relying on the latest methods of making ball bearings for cars and weapons, added a ball mechanism to the capillary channel and introduced the ballpoint pen to the world.


By design, the following types of pens are distinguished:
Ball-point. It is a tube filled with a pasty substance. At the end of the rod is a spinning ball assembly. In the process of writing, this metal ball moves along the paper surface, being moistened with paste-like ink from the side of the rod.The ball can be of different diameters. This determines the thickness of the lines that leave ink on the surface. A small gap is made between the ball and the walls of the rod so that the ball can rotate freely enough, but not fall out. A ballpoint pen for writing is the cheapest and easiest option. Ballpoint pens use a thick, oil-based ink paste. It is the most economical and practical, but not the most convenient for casual writing.
Gel. These pens are also ballpoint pens.The principle of filing a substance for writing is the same as in the previous version. The ink is gelatinous and thinner in consistency when compared to regular paste. It is much easier and faster to write with them, and the color of the inscriptions turns out to be more saturated. Another property is resistance to ultraviolet rays and, as a result, resistance to fading. When water gets in, the inscriptions do not blur for a long time. If the surface is loose, then a gel pen is the best option. They can be used to write on paper, ceramics, textiles, plastic and glass.Sometimes schoolchildren use these pens to create art paintings on nails.
Feathers. These are beautiful writing pens that have been known since the 19th century. The modern fountain pen has undergone a number of changes. Some types are elite office supplies and can be made partly or entirely from expensive materials. Original pens of elite brands are a whole work of art, which is a status item. The variety of models allows you to write not only with different line widths, but also with different fonts.The effect of italics and calligraphic handwriting is achieved by placing a specially flattened small ball on the tip of the pen, which changes the thickness of the line when moving in different directions. The bead is usually made of gold or wear-resistant iridium, which is so hard that it can only be cut with diamond discs. In addition, some manufacturers make special angled feathers for left-handers.
Rollerski. They are also called fountain pens. This pen can be called a hybrid of two types: ballpoint and fountain pen.Ink is used as a writing medium, and a ball is contained in the structure of the rod. Rollers are very convenient for those who write a lot, but the amount of ink in the tube does not last long. If you prefer to buy fountain pen effect ballpoint pens, this option is for you.


When choosing a handle, pay attention to the following details:

  • cheap products fail quickly enough;
  • is very comfortable to hold the handle with a rubberized section.It will not slip in a wet hand;
  • refill pens are more practical than disposable pens;
  • high-quality, good models are quite weighty – this is an important sign of the best pens;
  • Gel variations are not very suitable for writing in notebooks. It is convenient for them to draw, decorate pictures, posters;
  • models with a cap will last much longer than automatic ones, since the latter have a very unreliable mechanism. One has only to break a spring or other small part and the handle becomes unusable.

Particular attention should be paid to the choice of pen for the student. Remember that:

  • The body of the pen should not be too thick or too thin – otherwise it will not be very comfortable for the baby to hold it. It is also necessary to refuse from souvenir curly pens: they cause interest, but it is absolutely impossible to hold them with clumsy fingers.
  • If the pen is a ballpoint, it is desirable that the ball is of medium size (that is, the line on the paper is of medium thickness). Too large a ball will make the notebook untidy, and too thin will prevent you from carefully writing each element of the letters.
  • It is advisable not to offer the child an automatic pen (with a retractable and retractable rod) – this will distract and provoke to play, and not practice.
  • The pen cap must be with a hole, this must be checked before purchasing. These holes are made so that a person who accidentally swallows the cap while chewing the pen thoughtfully does not suffocate. Air (albeit in small quantities) will flow, and doctors will have time to safely remove the foreign object.
  • ink color is often recommended by teachers (or directly indicate what color of pens to buy for first graders). If no such recommendation is issued, it is better to give preference to relatively light ink – not dark blue or black. This will make the notebooks neat, and it will also be clearly visible with what pressure the child writes.
  • In order to notice in time that the ink is running out, it is better to choose a pen with a transparent (or partially transparent) body.
  • If the child is left-handed, it is advisable to find a pen adapted for writing with the left hand.Such models are produced by many manufacturers, there are also quite budget models.

How to choose a ballpoint pen. Which ballpoint pens can be harmful to your health?

Ballpoint pens are popular stationery that is used almost every day. When choosing, it is worth considering the characteristics of a ballpoint pen, the purpose and intensity of use, ergonomics.

The history of the ballpoint pen

In the 19th century, John Lud, a leather tanner, invented a new way to supply ink.Here are some interesting facts about the ballpoint pen. Many have tried to modernize John Lud’s idea – these are gentlemen J. Parker and Van Vechten Reisberg.

Then Laszlo-József Biro, in the 1930s, examined the principle of a typographic typewriter. He created a pen design and special ink that dried quickly on paper. So a new era of writing instruments started, which were later refined to their modern version.

Purpose of the handle

It is important to understand in the selection process what a ballpoint pen is for.For writing abstracts, notes, a simple version with a plastic case is suitable. The moving ball is important to ensure the required writing speed.

Depending on what you need a ballpoint pen for, you should choose a budget or expensive option. For presentations, conferences, expensive accessories with a body made of ceramic material, metal, resin are suitable. They look presentable, have a rich color in ink, and the pen will complement the image.

Disposable or not

It is important to understand how long a ballpoint pen is enough – for one time or for a longer period.Disposable models have a one-piece body and do not allow replacement of the core.

If the first option does not work, choose a collapsible handle, which can replace the shaft in a few minutes.

Intensive handle

The choice of a ballpoint pen depends on the frequency of use. In active use, ink quality, body weight and shape are important. Prefer convenience over designer performance.

Test drive suitable models.Pay attention to the sensations – you need to make an effort, is it comfortable to write, how quickly the ball glides on the paper, and how evenly the ink flows.

Types of ballpoint pens

There are these types of ballpoint pens: inexpensive products and designer writing accessories. The first ones are made of plastic or metal and do not last long. For the latter, expensive materials are used, such as steel, ceramics, resins, platinum, rhodium, and gold. These products provide smooth glide and contain premium ink.

Asking the question, what are the pens, it is worth to divide them according to the type of design: ball-point, gel and rollerballs. The first ones are equipped with a special rotating ball, a rod filled with oil ink is inserted inside. Gel ink writes on a variety of surfaces. It is difficult to say which are the best ballpoint pens for writing – this question is completely individual.

What to consider when choosing a handle for a child

When choosing writing instruments for a child, it is worth considering the properties of a ballpoint pen.With the normal development of the baby, there are no contraindications, but some models will help to master writing skills faster.

To understand how to choose the right ballpoint pen, it is important to take into account the muscle tone of the arms. It is important how strong or weakened the tension in the child’s arm is. The intensity of the pressure indicates the severity of the tone. When your child writes weakly with a pencil, you should choose a smooth writing pen for more convenience and comfort when writing.

Weight and size

To choose the most comfortable ballpoint pen for your child, it is important to choose the right weight and size.Hypertensive patients need a heavier model to attract attention. For children, the pen should be slightly lighter to avoid fatigue when writing.

Special children should sometimes use hand weights or writing utensils, for example, in the case of pathologies in the perception of their own sensations.

Housing shape

Regarding the description of a ballpoint pen – ribbed relief is recommended, but no sharp edges. Gentle terrain will help to avoid a decrease in productivity.Under stress during the educational process, the muscle tone of the arms increases, the child often squeezes the handle hard.

In this case, the ribbed surface can cause discomfort, therefore, it is recommended to have a rubber insert on the body. But if the child has increased sweating of the hands, fingers may slide on it.

Color of ink and body

When choosing the right types of ballpoint pens, it is worth considering the personal preferences of the child. After all, children are more willing to use the objects they like.

In the process of choosing a ballpoint pen, it is worth considering the child’s preference for ink color. But keep in mind that an overly bright color is unacceptable for study. When a child asks for bright ink, it is not a completely different color that can be suggested, but just a pale shade. A similar recommendation applies to the color and design of the case. It is important for the student to concentrate on writing without distractions.

Which pens are dangerous

When choosing quality writing utensils, it is important to review the ranking of the best ballpoint pens by manufacturer.Experts recommend not to purchase too budgetary accessories with an unreliable case made of low-grade plastic that emits toxic substances. Such substances are dangerous if ingested when schoolchildren chew on their hands.

In addition, ink is often dangerous for cheap pens. On contact with the skin, they can cause dermatitis, allergic reactions, eye inflammation.

When choosing which ballpoint pens for writing are the best, it is worth considering the ratio of quality and cost.Reputable manufacturers usually have high quality at a reasonable price.

Fountain pens, gel, ball-point, oil-based, rollerballs at wholesale prices

KUBANSTAR offers a wide selection of handles from various manufacturers at the best wholesale prices.

“The queen of stationery” is what the pen is called. It is impossible to imagine office work without it. The following types of pens are distinguished: fountain pens, ballpoint pens, gel pens, or rollerballs, and some other types of pens.

The fountain pen has a metal plate nib that transfers ink to the paper.
Fountain pens resemble an ancient nib more than any other pens. The fundamental difference from a pen is that it does not need an inkwell. The ink is placed in the pen itself, in a reservoir or in a cartridge (cartridge). When you are not writing, it is recommended that you put a cap on it to keep the ink from drying out.

Fountain pens are refillable (with automatic ink supply) and non-refillable.Non-refillable pens are periodically dipped into an inkwell while writing to set a portion of ink.

Today the composition of a fountain pen is usually a body with a refueling mechanism, an ink tank and a bifurcated nib. Now fountain pens are massively used in schools in Western Europe when teaching writing, when making large volumes of notes (for example, by students) and as an image accessory, competing, however, in this area with rollerball pens (gel). In everyday life, fountain pens are inferior to ballpoint and gel pens due to the simplicity and low cost of the latter, which do not require a minimum culture of use.

KUBANSTAR offers fountain pens with replaceable cartridges manufactured by the MAZARI . They are refilled with ink and are a great status gift. KUBANSTAR is the official representative of MAZARI on the market. The MAZARI fountain pen has an ergonomic body with a rubber grip, 7 replaceable cartridges and an ink converter. The thickness of the nib is 0.5 mm. The nib is made of steel with a wear-resistant iridium nib.

Ballpoint pen is a pen that transfers ink from the reservoir onto the paper by a rotating ball.Consists of a refill (usually a plastic tube) filled with paste ink and a ballpoint nib located at the end of the refill.
The composition of the tip: a tube (copper, nickel silver, steel, etc.), which one end enters the rod, and a small metal ball, placed with a small gap at the other end of the tube so that one end protrudes from the tube.

To make the ball wear-resistant, it is made of hard metal, for example, steel or tungsten carbide, and a spherical shape is achieved by grinding using diamond paste or other methods.
The spherical shape and clearance between the ball and tip tube allows the ball to rotate. The ink from the rod flows through the tip tube to the ball and wets one side of it. During writing, the ball rotates due to friction between the paper and the ball, the side of the ball moistened with ink is outside the tube, and the ink from the ball is transferred to the paper. The viscosity and density of the ink should be such that the ink does not flow out of the rod either from the open end or through the gap between the tube and the ball, stick to the latter and transfer to the paper, moreover, the ink should dry quickly enough on paper, therefore, pen ink pens are not suitable for ballpoint pens.

Ballpoint ink (ink paste) is an oil-based formulation with the addition of pigments or dyes to give them a variety of colors.
Ballpoint pens are cheap and popular due to their simple design.

One of the bestsellers KUBANSTAR ballpoint pen Pensan My-Pen Vision , inexpensive and of high quality, excellent writing. The rod can be changed. This pen has a very comfortable core, it writes softly, does not stain. Long lasting.

The KUBANSTAR company offers a wide range of handles with key chains.They are popular with schoolchildren, featuring vibrant colors and a variety of designs.

In recent years, oil ballpoint pens have been gaining popularity. The range of the KUBANSTAR company oil-based ballpoint pens manufactured by KUBANSTAR , PENSAN and PIANO , MAZARI (with Indian ink and with Indian nib), TUKZiber , , HAT241

It is more comfortable to write with oil pens than pens with ordinary ink, it is immediately felt.Due to the higher oil content in the ink, they require less pressure, due to which the hand gets less tired while writing. They write much more smoothly and easily, softly and neatly. Does not fade under water, does not fade over time, the most economical and practical. Therefore, oil pens are recommended for those who write a lot, especially office workers, leaders, schoolchildren and students.

Oil ink is good for writing even on non-standard porous materials such as napkins.This ink is resistant to fading, the text retains brightness for a long time. Oil pens are suitable for representatives of mobile professions, those who have to write in a moving vehicle or on the go: field sales managers, couriers, freight forwarders. Oil ink does not freeze at sub-zero temperatures, so you can write with it in cold rooms (unheated workshops, in production).

Oil-based ballpoint pens are recommended for elementary school students. They have to write a lot, and they still do not know how to deftly handle pens.Oil ink is comfortable to write, it glides easily on paper, and children’s fingers do not need to make an effort to write letters or numbers. This helps to develop beautiful handwriting.

Another type of handle is roller pens . They came after ballpoint pens and ink. This is another step in the evolution of both ballpoint and fountain pens. They combine the best qualities of both pens by using a water-based ink with the ball, which is reminiscent of fountain pen ink.A rollerball writing pen uses a refill filled with gel or other water-based coloring liquid with a ballpoint nib at the end. The gel is less viscous than ballpoint ink, which makes it more absorbent. This allows such pens to leave a mark similar to that of a fountain pen. The ink supply system in such pens allows you to write from any angle, including in a vertical position. The diameter of the nib ball is usually 0.5 or 0.7 mm.

Rollers write much softer than ballpoint pens, but at the same time are less economical: one refill is enough for a short time.
Rollerball pens are simpler and easier to use than ballpoint pens. The pressure when writing requires significantly less than when writing with a ballpoint pen. As a result, the hand is much less stressed, as with fountain pens. But, unlike the latter, it is much easier to replace cartridges. In addition, the features of rollerball pens include: a wide range of colors, sharper lines than ballpoint pens, better machine-readability of handwritten text.
The disadvantages of rollerballs are higher consumption and less ink compared to a ballpoint pen.Also, the likelihood of leakage is slightly higher.
Our company presents rollers produced by MAZARI.

The range of KUBANSTAR includes gel pens , including those with key chains, manufactured by KUBANSTAR, MAZARI, HATBER, Schreiber, PENSAN and PIANO, as well as write-and-erase.

You can wholesale ballpoint, fountain pens and rollerballs from KUBANSTAR.

90,000 several schoolchildren on the exam were left with zero, biting on the trick of businessmen

The Conflict Commission of the Ministry of Education is studying videotapes from classes and tests in mathematics of three graduates at once in the Astrakhan region.All of them received 0 points for the exam. It is already clear: schoolchildren, for some reason, used the wrong pens. The automatic test checkers were unable to recognize the answers.

He is going to go abroad and enter one of the European universities. In his certificate “four” and “five”. Mathematics is specialized. But the exam score is zero points.

It turned out that the pen was to blame for everything.

Examiners require: black gel pen. In a stationery store to choose from – 15-20 pieces.There is even a couple – especially for the exam!

“They are designed specifically for USE forms, because you can write on USE forms only with a black gel pen,” explains sales assistant Valeria Kondrashova.

A man takes two pens at once. If he runs out of one, he will immediately have a second in stock.

Handles are not special at all, the most common ones. And the sticker “for the exam” is a commercial move, to attract clients. They are not imposed, they are offered. Such ink is well distinguishable, it is easily read by the scanner.The computer could not read the examination papers of Artyom Yarovoy and another graduate.

Astrakhan schoolchildren could have gone for a trick. And instead of the usual gel pen, take the “write-erase” miracle pen with heat-sensitive ink. It works like this: the student makes a mistake in the word. Then he corrects it correctly with the back of the handle. The friction creates a heating effect. The ink disappears.

It’s like taking a lighter and using fire to remove the ink.

On that day, at school №11 of Astrakhan, one hundred and fifty students passed the exam, but only two of them had pens with the erasure effect.When the work was passed through the scanner, instead of intelligible answers, there was something vague. The machine was unable to read the text.

“Above there is an inscription made with an ordinary gel pen, below an inscription made with a pen with an erasure effect. As we can see, it is not visible,” the director of the State Budgetary Institution “Center for Monitoring in Education” Denis Barkunov demonstrates a scan of a sheet of ink from a clever pen. the traders themselves, they used this non-standard pen that led to all these problems. ”

Schoolchildren confessed: someone suggested to take just such a pen for the exam.It costs 15 times more than regular gel. And it leads, as it has now become clear, to big problems. The invisible works were sent to Moscow. The metropolitan experts will appreciate the originals.

“I would not call it a failure. There are clearly established rules that have been in effect throughout the exam since 2001. The exam must be written with a black gel pen so that all the works that the guys write are well recognized so that no one loses theirs. cherished points “, – emphasizes Igor Kruglinsky, head of the Department of organization and conduct of state final certification of Rosobrnadzor.

At the end of the week, the graduates’ zero points should still turn into real grades. And this is no longer chemistry.

90,000 ballpoint or gel pen. what’s better?

Once upon a time, in the old days, people used exclusively pens and ink for writing. However, those times are long gone. There are now many different types of writing supplies. The most popular of these are the handles. There are many types of them, but the most popular are ballpoint and gel pens.


Ballpoint and gel pens have a lot of differences that are worth talking about in more detail. In parallel, this will solve the dilemma, which type of these writing utensils is still better.

About Ballpoint Pens

First of all, we will consider what ballpoint pens are and what features they have. Generally speaking, a ballpoint pen is a structure that contains a refill filled with pasty ink.There is a ball-shaped writing knot at the end of the rod.
A ballpoint pen has such advantages as:

  1. Low cost.
  2. Ink dries quickly enough and does not smudge as much.
  3. The writing knot of these pens is stronger.

I must say that ballpoint pens were probably one of the first to appear. Therefore, they have already been tested by time and have earned the trust of buyers.

About Gel Pens

This type of writing utensils differs in that the consistency of the ink is special.It is characterized by increased hardness and toughness. If we talk about the design of gel pens, then it practically does not differ from ballpoint pens. As for the quality of writing, here gel pens benefit from the fact that they glide more easily on paper. The letter itself looks clearer and more even, and all because the ball in the writing unit is on the inside. For ballpoint pens, it is located on the outside.

As for the advantages that gel pens have, they are as follows:

  1. The gel pen can write on any surface and on any paper.
  2. The color palette of ink for gel pens is more varied and looks brighter and more attractive.

Related Posts

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.