The 29 Best Pens 2018

best pens

Are you a pen enthusiast?

Well, if you are then, you've struck gold.

With the plethora of choices in the market it might get a bit confusing finding the best pen for your needs. I've spend the week playing around with different types of pens. Some of them were beautiful and amazing to hold. While others.. not so much.

I've also included the pen company all the US presidents traditionally use.

Best Luxury/Fountain Pens

The following are some of the sweetest looking luxurious fountain pens you can use, for signing documents, calligraphy, giving off a strong first impression or as a gift to a respected loved 

Parker Sonnet Fountain Pen, Medium Point, Dark Gray with Gold Trim

This is a black silk, elegant varnished pen with a multilayer metallic lacquer. You will notice that this pen has a look of depth and timelessness and is also individually quality checked making it one of Parker's most successful ranges that are manually assembled. This is a durable pen and with a stainless steel nib that is gold-plated.

Jean Pierre Lepin Titanic Black Pink Gold Finish Fountain Pen
jean pierre

The pen is made from certified fused steel from the shipyard where the great Titanic was built. It is designed in such a way that it has rivets, portholes, propellers, pistons and many other things each of which is a strictly limited edition. This is a much more complicated pen which will surely make you stand out among your colleagues.

Fountain Pens

Pilot 61096
pilot vanishing

This pen is crafted with an 18-karat gold nib which is plated in a dark metal. The metal barrel is durable with a metallic finish and a retractable nib that has a hidden trap door that usually helps in preventing the pen from drying out. The pen usually comes in a few color options and you can also choose your preferred nib as well as the ink filling system.

Waterman S0951660

This is a unique pen with a cigar-shaped silhouette and a 23-karat gold-plated stainless steel nib and a converter ink filling system. This pen is very much classy and it comes with only two nib sizes to choose from, medium or fine. This can be termed as one of the best fountain pens from France and has been around since 1883.

Pilot 60741

This is the Pilot Namiki Falcon fountain pen, one of the most expensive fountain pens but the best when it comes to quality. It has an 18 Karat Gold-plated hooded nib which is much flexible. It comes with an option of choosing whether you want a fine, extra fine, medium or a broad tip. It also comes with a blue ink cartridge and a converter of the same brand.

Best Micro Gel Ink Pens

Uni-Ball Signo DX 0.38mm Black
uni ball

If you are new to the world of micro tip pens and this is probably the first time you are going for a pen that’s under 0.7mm, just the Signo DX. With a barrel that perfectly combines minimalism and durability, it gives you a great writing experience producing sharp lines with a dark black ink.

Zebra Sarasa Clip 0.4mm Blue Black

This is also one of the best retractable microgel ink pens in the market. It comes with quite a few colors to choose from but the blue-black gel ink is the one commonly used. It is also very cheap.

Pentel EnerGel Euro Needle 0.35mm Blue

When you look closely, you will realize that needle tip of this pen lays down a line closer to some 0.5mm pens but this doesn't stop it from giving an incredible performance when it comes to writing. With how it is greatly designed, it is not a surprise that it also fits as one of the best microgel ink pens.

Best Rollerball Pens

The Presidential Pen

Century II 
cross century

This is the company all modern presidents have traditionally used. Even Trump. For a video of it check out this CNN article.

Retro 1951 Tornado Rollerball Pen

This is a retractable roller ball ink pen that has a stainless steel barrel with a high gloss metallic lacquer. This pen is capless and always packaged in a sturdy graphic tube which also works as a pen stand. It can also be converted to a ballpoint with Easy Flow 9000 (REF71) or Parker style refill. Get your hands on this pen and you won’t regret the experience you get.

Uni-ball Vision Needle Rollerball Pen

This is also one of the best rollerball pens available as it gives you a conveniently smooth and free-flowing writing experience. It is durable premium with a 0.7mm fine tip for precise writing. It also features a uni super ink which protects it against water, fading, and fraud. It has a visible ink supply window that allows you to see how much of ink is remaining and also comes in a variety of colors including black, blue, green, and red among others.

Best Ball Point Pens

Zebra F-301 Ballpoint Pen

This is a retractable ballpoint pen with a fine point tip of 0.7mm. Usually, comes in a pack of 9 pens and a standard black ink cartridge. It also has a stainless steel touch that makes it look cool and also has a refill capability.

Paper Mate Ink Joy 300RT Ballpoint Pen

This pen will give you an effortless writing experience as it features Paper Mate’s revolutionary writing system. It has an extended rubberized grip that gives you an optimal comfort with a metal clip that provides a long lasting durability. It comes in a set of 24 assorted color ink pens with varying colors and it’s also retractable.

Pilot The Better Ballpoint Stick Pens

This is also a great ballpoint pen to use as it writes smoothly and also produces clean lines. It has ribbed finger grip just to give you a comfortable writing experience with a fine point tip of 0.7mm also for precise writing. This pen comes in a box of 12 pens with black ink and is also refillable.

Best Pens for Planners

If you are a serious planner then you might want to have one of these pens in your collection.

Le Pen

One of the best planner pens available is Le Pen. It has a super fine tip which helps you to produce super thin lines and columns. It also gives you a great writing experience. It also has great color options as an added advantage of using this pen.


Stabilo pens have been in the market for a long time and these pens are usually durable hence can serve you for a longer period of time. With tips of about 0.88mm, Stabilo pens offer wide range of pen packages with some of the best ink colors. They might not have the finest points but they do offer a smooth writing experience.

Staedtler Triplus Fine liners

These are known to be serious pens for serious planners. They have extra fine tips thus allowing you to be extra detailed in your planning and maximizing the space. These pens are recommendable for planners if you want to get maximum results. You can use them to map out ideas in the note section of your planner.

Best Colored Pens

Uni-Ball Roller Ball Stick Pens
uniball blue

Unlike colored pencils, this is a fade free, water resistant and a fine pointed pen. It has a uni-flow system that ensures a steady flow of ink hence a smooth and consistent handwriting. It also comes in a set of 5 pens with different colors all of which have vented refills which keep them from leaking or exploding and this makes this pen to be ideal for those who like traveling.

BIC Atlantis Original Retractable

This is a smooth click retractable pen that consistently provides a classic look and feels that gives you an awesome writing experience too. It has a rubber grip that provides you with a comfortable writing. It also has a metal clip that ensures you don’t misplace it. There are also a lot of colored inks available that can be used by this pen and this not only does it make it look classy, but it is also fun to use them

Best Disposable/Inexpensive Pens

Pilot Pens G2
pilot pens g2

When I say pilot pens, I mean the G2, V5/V7, Varsity, and the G-Tech/Hi-Tech. these were the first pens you probably got introduced to and they might have showed you that a writing implement could be more than a utilitarian device. Pilot pens fit this category since they are highly affordable, broadly available; they are smooth and provides clean writing. For those who like fountain pens, you can go with the Varsity.

Zebra Pens

Here we have the Sarasa, F/G-301, F-701, and F-402. Mostly known for their trademark all-steel, metallic design, they are also elegant and sharp looking. Not all of them are trademarked with the steel body though. The Zebra Sarasa, for instance, is a great gel pen that has a transparent body and soft grip that provides a comfortable writing experience. Zebra pens are also very much portable and attractive when it comes to the design.

Uniball Pens

This pen comes in multiple sizes, shapes, and form factors. These are designed for those who like non-smudging ink and free-flowing roller ball feels. They are usually made in such a way that they can favor any type of writing style you will prefer. They are also durable and easily affordable.

Best Pen for Handwriting

Pilot G2 Retractable Premium Gel Ink Pen

This is a rollerball pen which will blow your mind the first time you use it. It has a flawless ink flow and writes very nicely while producing crisp fine lines. You can reach out for the 0.38mm fine point pen to get the best ultra-fine experience. This pen is usually light and has a very comfortable grip.

Uni-ball Vision Elite
uniball vision elite

This is also one of the best pens in this category. The uni-ball Vision Elite is a very smooth pen that gives offers you a great comfortable feeling when writing. The ink leaves clear, solid and even strokes and this always results in a clean and smooth text.

Uni-ball Jetstream

Well, for this pen, maybe the most the most interesting part is the ink. It always uses a unique hybrid super ink that is designed in a way that it gets trapped in the paper. This usually helps in preventing criminal check washing and other document alteration. This ink is also high quality and always acid-free. It is also both fade and water resistant.

Wrapping it up

Well, we all have problems with handwriting. Either we lack legibility, consistency or it’s just that we don’t like the way our writing or drawing looks. However, if you have keenly gone through this article, I am more than certain that you have picked one or two if not all the pens to help you improve your writing and art.  Remember, practice makes perfect so pick the right tool and keep practicing until you become a pro.

About the author

John Thatch

John Thatcher is a computer science educated artist. He uses technology to solve artist problems. His friends don't like it when he speaks of himself in the third person. But John does it anyway, because he's a rebel.

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