There is an updated version of this list! Click Here
Not all of these pens will be a good fit for everybody, but I think they are all at least worth considering if you’re looking to try out something new.
1. For the Pen Cup: uni-ball Signo 207 micro
The Signo 207 micro doesn’t only look professional, it also writes very well. And unlike most other gel ink pens, the ink practically never smears on standard papers (and I really tried hard to make it smear). This is definitely one of the best pens you can find on your average store shelf, and they’re cheap enough to lose or loan without much thought. (see full review)
2. Your “Nice” Pen: Retro 51 Tornado
I’ve never owned a pen that I like to hold as much as my Retro 51 Tornado. It’s balanced nicely, looks good, and writes great. It’s perfect for writing letters, journaling, or just making you look good in a meeting where everyone else is using pens from the supply closet. And at 20-30 dollars, it wont break the bank. (see full review)
3. An On-the-Go Pen: Tombow Airpress
Need a pen that can write at odd angles or on dirty surfaces? The Tombow Airpess has got you covered. It’s also light weight, has a good clip, and fits nicely into a pocket. On top of it all, you could probably hurl the Airpress at a brick wall without doing much damage to the pen. (see full review)
4. The Everyday Writer: Sharpie Pen
The Sharpie Pen writes such clean and crisp lines, it seems like everybody who uses one instantly has better-looking handwriting. It’s a great pen for making lists or writing a quick note. I personally like the original model over the retractable and titanium models, as the original is relatively inexpensive and can be found in most stores. (see full review)
5. A Pen for Your Artistic Side: Kuretake Bimoji
I should be clear that I’m a very inexperienced brush pen user, but I love to pull the Bimoji out and doodle all over my notebook. It might not be a great pen for writing, but you might want to bring it along to boring meetings to keep yourself entertained. At the very least, you’ll have the most unique-looking pen in the room. (see full review)
So that’s that so far. I’ve got plenty more pens to review, so this list will likely need updating eventually. If there are any pens I’ve neglected, please let me know in the comments below. Thanks!