Best Colored Pen Reviews 2018

Colored pens are a fun way to unleash your creative genius, but they’re also a practical everyday tool to help keep your notes, planners, and schedules organized. The problem is, picking a quality set can be a total head-scratcher. That’s why, over at Top Products, we’ve put our heads together to compile a list of our top five colored pens. The great thing about this list, it only includes leading brands, so we’re sure that you’ll love their quality. If you’d still want more options, go ahead and read through our other in-depth pen reviews which also include some pretty cool gel pens.
Overview
PROS
CONS
SPECS
Colors
Tip
Material
Ink
Count
Our Top Choice
Staedtler Triplus Fineliner Pens
Staedtler seeks to improve everyday writing by manufacturing innovative, top-tier writing tools and maintaining a superior level of customer satisfaction.
Comes in a 20-pack of vivid colors. Sturdy and durable pen barrels. Fast-drying ink. Great for lefties. Minimal bleed-through. Lid can be set up as an easel. No smearing or skipping.
Lid might not hold up for long.
42 colors
Superfine; metal-clad; 0.3mm
Polypropylene
Water-based
20
Best Value
Paper Mate Flair Felt Tip Pens
For more than 50 years, Paper Mate has been impressing its customers with high-performing pens, pencils, and correction products that meet their diverse demands.
Comes with point guard to extend tip’s life even under prolonged use. Ink is water-based and fast-drying. Great for lefties. Minimal bleed-through. Medium point. Contoured grips.
Tends to dry-out quickly with the cap off.
32 colors
Medium
Plastic/metal
Smear-resistant; water-based
12
Pilot FriXion ColorSticks Gel Pens
Pilot believes strongly that writing should be a pleasurable and inspiring experience and therefore focuses on producing affordable and highly innovative writing instruments.
Comes with a slim barrel for a comfy grip. Non-roll caps that stay put. 10-pack of vivid colors. Erasable: clear eraser on the cap. Thermo-sensitive ink for smooth writing.
Might not erase completely.
10 colors
Fine
Plastic
Gel; thermal-sensitive
5; 10;12; 36
Uni-ball Vision Elite Roller Ball Pen
Whatever your stationery needs, they’ll most definitely be satisfied with fine Uni-ball products. Their diverse and unique products boast attractive prices, and of course, unmatched performance.
Airplane safe: ink won’t leak or explode during flight. Business-like design. Steady ink flow with vivid colors. Micro-point. Uni super ink protects against water-fading and fraud.
Could have come with more colors.
8 colors
Fine; medium; bold
Plastic
Gel; water-resistant; acid-free
1; 3; 4; 8; 12
Pentel R.S.V.P Colors Ballpoint Pens
The Pentel brand has over 50 years of manufacturing experience and has provided elite writing materials globally to professionals, artists, and students alike.
Soft, latex-free grip for comfort. Retractable design. Medium tips. 59% recycled plastic used. Long, color-tinted barrels. Comes refillable. Durable stainless-steel tip.
Tends to run out a little too quickly.
8 colors
1mm; medium
Recycled plastic/stainless steel
Smooth-flow
2; 3; 4; 6; 8; 12

(Updated )
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Watch Our Colored Pen Review

How Do I Choose the Best Colored Pen?

While colored pencils have been around for a while, colored pens are quickly becoming all the rage. A good reason might be that they provide a fun break from plain old, humdrum pens and pencils that, after a while, seem so boring.

Even if you’re not head-over-heels in love with coloring, you may find some smart, practical uses for colored pens. For instance, you could use them on your planner. By color-coding appointments, different short-term and long-term goals, deadlines, and targets, your journal becomes much easier to understand at a glance, making that information pop right out from the pages.

As you can see, colored pens have other uses aside from coloring magical unicorns and idyllic rainbows. And, as they have the added ability to work as highlighters, markers, and standard pens all at once, you essentially have multiple writing instruments in one.

There’s no reason why a bunch of colored pens shouldn’t find a home in that cute pencil cup on your desk. Not only do they make impressively colorful writing tools, but they also display an image of efficiency, productivity and organization.

Of course, for those who want colored pens for the sole purpose of coloring, they can certainly add more color to your creative designs. With a myriad of eye-catching, whimsical colors, think of all the excitingly detailed masterpieces you could create. So, go ahead, and doodle all you want!

If you’re ready to explore all sides of the colored pen, then get ready to roll with us as we show you around.
Price
Colored pens are incredibly affordable, but the pricing does span a wide range, and you can see quality sets anywhere from $5 to $800. Before you panic over the potential price tag, it’s important to understand that the more expensive pens at the higher spectrum of pricing are specific to art and design professionals. With that in mind, most individuals purchase sets that are a lot more cost-friendly thus making them affordable. Typically, what makes one set more expensive than another is the pen count in the package as well as the gel type. Above all else, don’t fall for the lure of cheap colored pens because you’ll only be disappointed. We didn’t bother reviewing these inferior quality pens, and if you’ve ever used them, then you’d know why. Most usually come with poorly made inks and many don’t last more than a few days.
Features
There are quite a number of things to consider when you want to get yourself a colored pen set, but we’ll highlight the most important ones here:
  • Types
  • Ink type
  • Type of application
  • What colors do you need?
Let’s get to the details already!
Construction and Design
There are many types of pens, but we’ll discuss the most basic types below:

Ballpoint pens: This kind of pen comes with a small ball at its tip from which ink is spread while writing. Considered to be the most versatile type of colored pens, it can cover wide areas due to its large application size.

Fountain pens: There are two parts to this pen. The nib which you write with, and the feed that supplies the nib with ink. This type of colored pen is mostly used to create outlines, but some people use them to color certain areas of their art work.

Fiber tip pens: Like the name suggests, this pen has a porous, fibrous material that extends from the ink cartridge. In this respect, they are quite like markers. Since the application tip isn’t overly stiff, you can manipulate the pressure and angle to control the amount of color used.

Roller ball pens: Although this pen type is similar in many ways to the ballpoint pen, it does differ quite a bit when it comes to color range. Roller ball pens have a wider color range and produce more color, but they’re prone to bleeding and smudging.

Gel pens: These pens produce really vibrant colors with a smooth ink application. On the flip side, though, they tend to have really short life spans and could dry out pretty fast.

A quick look at ink types…

Oil-based ink: This is the most commonly used ink type. It allows for an extensive range of colors and is, of course, thicker than water-based ink. It also dries fast and produces deep, thick colors.

Water-based ink: It is used mostly in fountain pens and is really smooth since it is not so viscous. It doesn’t really dry quickly though, and color range is narrower with this type of ink since water doesn’t dissolve all pigments.

Gel ink: In this type of ink, pigments are suspended in a water-based fluid, so it ends up being denser than other types of inks. Because of this pigment suspension, gel inks are thick and come in a wide range of brilliant colors. Sometimes though, it bleeds through and the color can get way too intense on areas you’d rather keep subtle.
Performance and Ease of Use
Depending on how detailed your work is, you’d be needing different kinds of colored pens. For instance, if you feel that you might need some flexibility in color intensity, then go for a ballpoint or a fiber tip. But if you’re looking for deep, rich coloring, you may want to opt for roller ball or gel pens.

Finally, not all colors blend harmoniously, so you should think about getting a pen for every color you need. Depending on the pen and ink type, you may or may not be able to blend colors to your liking. It’s always best to purchase the colors that you’ll need beforehand as opposed to assuming you can create your own color blends.

Truly, there are loads of high-performance colored pens available for creative drawing and organizational purposes. With premium quality colored pens, you’re sure to have a multifunctional, visually appealing pen set that’s surprisingly versatile.

What is the Best Colored Pen?

Now that you know all the important details on colored pens thanks to our guide, you should be able to snag yourself a great one. But if you hang in there for just a few more minutes, we’d would love to show you our top five picks. Get ready!
Our Top Choice
If you’ve been searching for colored pens that are truly versatile, you may fall head-over-heels with the Staedtler Triplus Fineliner Pens. They come with sturdy forms that contain fast-drying ink which means that even lefties would love them! Would you like to get even more of those beautiful, world-famous, premium Staedtler colored pens? For just a smidgen more price-wise, check out the Staedtler Color Pen Set – 36Count.
Staedtler Triplus Fineliner Pens with Metal Clad Tip – Available in 2 Pack Sizes & with a Denim Wallet

Staedtler Colored Pen 334 SB20 – 1 Set


Features
From production to final distribution, Staedtler keeps creativity and customer satisfaction at the forefront of their business. This German brand manufactures some of the best writing, artist, and engineering drawing instruments the world has ever seen, boasting various product lines that are suitable for every lifestyle and every budget. Staedtler seeks to aid their customers in bringing their ideas to life via their fine writing instruments and products, and have been doing so successfully since 1835.When you check out the reviews on the Staedtler company, you’ll quickly understand why this brand has such an impressive track record.

If you’re looking for truly exceptional, premium-quality colored pens, the Staedtler Triplus Fineliner Pens are a fantastic place to start. There are dozens of great reasons why you can’t go wrong with these writing tools that you may just end up buying more than one set!

First thing’s first, the main reason why people adore these fine writing pens is because of their out-of-this-world vivid colors, sure to make your art visually pop off the page. The ink dries super-fast, so there’s minimal bleed-through and no smear at all! Lefties in the house, you’ll dig these like crazy.

Also, they come in really sturdy cases that protect your pens in case of accidents. And you know what? You can even set the lid up like an easel. Now, that’s really brilliant!

There are plenty of other Staedtler products that you should totally check out and we have listed just a few right here:
  • The Staedtler Lumocolor Correctable Pens are fantastic for laminates and whiteboards, and are available in four bold colors
  • For school and studio drawing, or any other place which requires pencil work, the Staedtler Lumograph Drawing Pencils are perfect.
  • There are markers in various beautiful colors like the Staedtler Duo Color Markers – 36Count.
  • For quality erasers, check out the Staedtler Mars Plastic Erasers – 4Pack.
  • For activities that require drawing and measuring, the Staedtler Math Set provides quality precision tools.
Best Value
The Paper Mate Flair Felt Tip Pens are totally brilliant! Not only do their colors visually impress, but their specially-formulated ink also ensures little to no bleed-through on your documents. Would you prefer a click retractable design? Then check out the Paper Mate InkJoy Colored Ballpoint Pens – 30Count. These super-affordable beauties have comfortable, rubberized grips.
Paper Mate Flair Felt Tip Pens – Available in 2 Tip Sizes, 5 Pack Sizes & Multiple Colors

Paper Mate Colored Pen 74423 – Medium Tip, 12-Pack, Assorted Fashion Colors


Features
With over 50 years of quality products and excellent performance, Paper Mate is a globally recognized leader of writing instruments, correction tools, and stationary accessories. What impresses customers above all else is the combination of craftsmanship, value, and competitive market prices. Most importantly, Paper Mate values their customers as evidenced by their top-tier customer service system.

One particularly exceptional example of quality craftsmanship is the Paper Mate Flair Felt Tip Pens set. If you’re looking to be wowed by a writing set, you’ll be impressed with this one for many reasons, such as:

The ink is specially-formulated and quick-drying. That means no bleed-through and no smears. Also, this set contains all sorts of beautiful shades and hues like: yellow, lime, magenta and even tangerine. Are you visualizing all the amazing things you can do with this pack? We bet you are!

With its contoured grip, you can be sure of great comfort and control when you use these pens. And there’s a little something extra to protect your felt tips: a point guard. Essentially, this guard ensures that your tips remain intact even if you color all day, every day. So, go ahead, release that pent-up energy and create a rainbow-colored masterpiece fit to be hung in the Parisian Louvre or on your mom’s fridge!

Paper Mate has lots of other cool stationery accessories that you’ll want to see:
  • For mechanical pencils in assorted colors, check out the Paper Mate Clearpoint Color Lead Mechanical Pencils.
  • Artists and writers looking for some really nice gel pens with black ink will love the Paper Mate InkJoy Gel Pens.
  • For some of the best ballpoint pens for miles, see the Paper Mate Write Bros Ballpoint Pens.
  • If you prefer your pens retractable, then check out the Paper Mate Profile Retractable Ballpoint Pens.
  • And for those who love felt tips, there’s the Paper Mate Flair Felt Tip Pens, available in a 12-pack.
You might not be able to right every wrong. But, with the Pilot FriXion ColorSticks Gel Pens, at least you can erase some mistakes! These vivid colored pens come with quality erasers for those times when you change your mind. How about retractable, smear-proof pens with rubberized grips that are really affordable? Then check out the Pilot Retractable Premium Gel Pens – 8-Pack.
Pilot FriXion ColorSticks Gel Pens – Available in 4 Pack Sizes & Multiple Colors

Pilot Colored Pen 32454 – 10-Pack, Assorted


Features
The Pilot company believes in superior-quality customer service and are willing to go above-and-beyond to satisfy their dedicated supporters. All their products are manufactured according to stringent guidelines, standards that guarantee customer satisfaction thus producing efficient, budget-friendly writing instruments and accessories. To stay ahead in the market, Pilot keeps abreast of new developments which allows them to set innovative writing trends. Additionally, as they take customer feedback very seriously, they’re able to infuse important customer suggestions into their next line of products.

At some point in your life, you’ve probably wished you could erase some inky mishaps. Luckily, with Pilot FriXion ColorSticks Gel Pens, there’s no such thing as a permanent mistake! If you should change your mind on that school application or epic love poem, you can neatly eliminate your writing blunder without any messy residue.

Aside from that, its colors are really vibrant and come with thermo-sensitive ink to ensure that your pens write smoothly. They also come with slim barrels for your fingers to enjoy, plus non-roll caps that ensure that they don’t keep falling off the desk and getting lost.

For those in search of more quality stationery products, check out Pilot’s other super fly writing tools!
  • If you’re looking for an affordable fountain pen with a really cool classic design, the Pilot Metropolitan Collection Fountain Pen is sure to please even the most discerning individual.
  • People who prefer writing with a roller ball in black ink will appreciate the Pilot Precise V5 Stick Rolling Ball Pens.
  • If erasable markers are what you need for the office, check out the Pilot Frixion Colors Erasable Marker – 12 Color Set.
  • Are you a calligrapher looking for a unique writing tool? Then the Pilot Parallel Calligraphy Pen Set will positively wow you.
  • Those who love Pablo Picasso’s blue period will undoubtedly find true-blue beauty in the Pilot Precise P-500 Gel Ink Rolling Ball Pens that come in, you guessed it, blue ink.
Get ready to fly around the world with fantastic colored pens to document every detail. Its Uni-ball Vision Elite Roller Ball Pen comes with ink that is airplane-safe, so your pens won’t leak or explode during flights. You can also get retractable color pens that write on virtually any surface, even glossy ones, and dry up fast too! Just look out for the Uni-ball Retractable Medium Point Gel Pens – 36Count.
Uni-ball Vision Elite Roller Ball Pen – Available in 2 Tip Sizes, 5 Colors & 5 Pack Sizes

Uni-ball Colored Pen 58092PP – Micro Point, Assorted Colors, 8-Pack


Features
Over at the Uni-ball company, they believe that their success hinges on customer satisfaction. With that belief set firmly behind the manufacturing and creation process, Uni-ball aims to accompany you on your writing journey. Ultimately, they are committed to making excellent writing materials that support a pleasurable and inspiring writing experience. From sunrise to sunset, this brand works hard to supply the world with premium-quality stationary supplies and accessories.

For a set of colored pens that pack a punch, the Uni-ball Vision Elite Roller Ball Pen will show you what a REAL pen feels like when it’s gliding across paper. With stylish good looks and easy handling, this pen is perfect for boardroom meetings or courtroom proceedings. If you’re a frequent flyer, you’ll appreciate these airplane-safe pens that can withstand cabin pressure changes, making ink leaks or pen explosions a thing of the past!

A steady ink flow ensures that you get rich, consistent color with every use, and that’s exactly what the Uni-ball Vision Elite Roller Ball Pen supplies. What’s more, its ink never fades, even if you splash water or champagne on your paperwork by accident! Plus, its micro point helps you to make very fine lines, so you can use it to write in a narrow space or draw heavily-detailed illustrations.

We selected a few of Pilot’s other amazing products so you can have a better look. Enjoy!
  • It’s got the Uni-ball Onyx Rollerball Pen – Micro Point that comes in black ink and a pack of 12
  • If you love your tips tiny, then you’re going to love the Uni-ball Vision Needle Rollerball Pens. It’s as fine a tip as its name suggests
  • There’s the Uni-ball Signo Retractable Gel Ink Rollerball Pens – Medium Point for those who’d prefer thicker lines
  • For some seriously bolder lines, there’s the Uni-ball Vision Elite BLX Infusion Rollerball Pens – Bold Point
  • If you’re looking for attractive rollerball colored pens, check out the Uni-ball EYE Ub-157 Rollerball Pen – 10Pack
As they are very concerned with our environment, the company created its Pentel R.S.V.P Colors Ballpoint Pens that are made of 59% recycled plastic. These medium-tip writing beauties work vibrant colored wonders! Perhaps you’d prefer your colored pens to have a fine point? Then check out the Pentel Fine Point Color Pen Set – 36Count. It comes with 36 assorted colors and is affordable too!
Pentel R.S.V.P Colors Retractable Medium Point Ballpoint Pens – Available in Multiple Colors & Pack Sizes

Pentel Colored Pen BK93CRBP8M – 8 Pack, Assorted Ink


Features
For over half a century, one company has continued to contribute enormously to the productivity of many individuals worldwide, and that company is Pentel. By and large, this company’s wealth of experience has certainly given it an overall advantage when compared to its counterparts in the same industry. Furthermore, Pentel’s unshakeable commitment to incorporating innovative trends and current technological developments into their products has seen them become a leader in the field. Since Pentel is so confident of its writing products and accessories, they promise an impressive lifetime warranty on all its goods. In addition to amazing writing tools and supplies, their various products are also pocket-friendly. Wouldn’t you rather shop here?!

When you get to know these Pentel R.S.V.P Colors Ballpoint Pens, you’ll notice two very distinctive qualities: affordable and eco-friendly. Not only are they made of 59% plastic, but they’re so affordable, they won’t permanently damage your wallet! Don’t you just love the sound of that?

Since these pens come in a retractable design, you won’t have to worry about keeping an eye on those caps. And, with a durable, stainless-steel tip that lasts even under rugged use, these pens can stand up to some major handling. It just keeps getting better!

The barrels of these pens are wrapped in a soft, latex-free material which provides a comfy grip. And the inks? They give rich coloring! You might even be interested to know that these pens come refillable too!

We expected that you’d be interested in seeing other quality products from the Pentel brand, so here’s us being proactive. Most probably, you’ll find something else to fall in love with.
  • For art-enthusiasts, there’s the Pentel Arts GraphGear Premium Gift Set with Refillable Leads and Erasers. It comes with quality pencils and erasers all kept in a beautiful case
  • There’s also a beautiful automatic pencil that comes in red: The Pentel Sharp Kerry Automatix Pencil
  • This classy pen comes in a silver-colored barrel that’s just stunning: The Pentel EnerGel Alloy RT Gel Pen
  • For a cute pocket brush pen that comes with refills, check out the Pentel Arts Pocket Brush Pen
  • And then these really nice erasers that actually work without messing up the paper: The Pentel Hi-polymer Block Eraser – 3Pack

Get the Best Colored Pen of 2018!

Are you ready to make that purchase? Of course you are, so let’s do this!

Our Top Choice
Staedtler Triplus Fineliner Pens
Best Value
Paper Mate Flair Felt Tip Pens
Pilot FriXion ColorSticks Gel Pens
Uni-ball Vision Elite Roller Ball Pen
Pentel R.S.V.P Colors Ballpoint Pens