Best Pens of 2019 – Buyers Guide & Review

Last Updated: June 1, 2019

Our researchers researched the best writing instruments, from ballpoints to fountain pens, to compile this guide to the best pens. This post comes complete with reviews of each product, to help help you find the pen that will work best for your requirements.

by Agent Staff
best pens
best pens review - image source: TEC Accessories

Given the sheer rate of innovation in communication tech over the past decade, the humble pen and paper would seems to have been forgotten in many quarters. But the best pens of 2019 benefit from advanced technology, making what would have been elite writing instruments just a few years ago, accessible to a broad cross section of consumers. And as fans of pen and paper are all too aware, there are times when you’ll not be able to access your tablet, phone or mobile device—and at those times, a reliable pen and a piece of paper becomes absolutely indispensable.


Best Pens of 2019

Our researchers researched the best writing instruments, from ballpoints to fountain pens, to compile this guide to the best pens. This post comes complete with reviews of each product, to help help you find the pen that will work best for your requirements.




1. Best Pens Review – Cross Classic Century Lustrous Chrome Ballpoint Pen (3502)



Image Source: Amazon

There is no quibbling with the name ‘Cross’ when it comes to pens. Even those unfamiliar with the fine detail of the pen industry would be familiar with this most recognisable brand. The Classic Century is one of Cross’s best pens, and also one of the best value pens available on the market. Pen quality of this standard would not have been imaginable even a few years ago. Given the Cross name, the ballpoint mechanism is as fluid in operation as you’d expect. And the ink flows easily and without interruption.

It’s also as visually gorgeous as it is functional, with the chrome finishes and distinctive showpieces such as the conical tip of the pen. This pen comes with one refill, and a lifetime warranty, so Cross will almost literally never let you down.

Amazon Customer Reviews: 1,609
Average Customer Review Rating: 4.4 out of 5 Stars

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2. Best Pens Review – Scribe Sword Fountain Pen With Ink

Image Source: Amazon

Although the use of fountain pens is no longer as widespread as it once was, do not for one minute think that they are obsoletes artefacts of a bygone age. Fountain pens remain the benchmark by which ‘penmanship’ is measured. They have a lightness of touch and precision that is simply unparalleled. Accordingly, their use by top level executives and throughout the legal industry for the completion of paperwork and official documentation is not surprising.

This is a great fountain pen if you are coming to writing for one for the first time or the first since childhood. Each Scribe Sword comes with instructions, and there is also a tutorial on usage available on the Scribe Sword website. And while you have to purchase ink separately, this is a very desirable item indeed, of sufficient size, and quality of build and finish, to accommodate personalised engraving if that’s your wish. Very classy pen, with a quality medium sized nib, this also comes with a lifetime warranty.

Amazon Customer Reviews: 180
Average Customer Review Rating: 4.3 out of 5 Stars

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3. Best Pens Review – Pilot G2 Retractable Premium Gel Ink Roller Ball Pens



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While all gel pens tend to get positive reviews for the quality of their writing, they almost all have a common problem—they run dry relatively quickly. But not the Pilot G2. Not only does it last twice as long as its gel pen competitors, it is also refillable (albeit using refills that must be purchased separately).

Pilot G2 ink does not smudge or smear, and the G2 has an agreeably smooth flow that is complemented by a design that’s ergonomic as well as attractive. The contours on the grip make for easy, non-slip handling, and they’re sold in boxes of 12, enabling the customer to stipulate their preference for ink color, point size and barrel design.

Amazon Customer Reviews: 7,454
Average Customer Review Rating: 4.7 out of 5 Stars

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4. Best Pens Review – Sharpie 1742659 Fine-Point Pen

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For people who don’t normally pay close attention to pens, Sharpie, while a quality brand, is very much associated with felt markers only. And while that may have been true at one time, this is no longer the case. The latest Sharpie products, including Liquid Pencil, Gel Highlighter, and Stained by Sharpie have helped to make the brand an iconic one across the board of writing instruments, and this Fine-Point Pen is typical of the quality.

This pen emulates the renowned Sharpie feel that you’ll associate with the companies big markers, with a crisp, consistent flow that works on a smaller, finer scale. One of the better pens available in 2019, the Sharpie Fine-Point Pen even safeguards against bleed-through when writing on paper, and is quick to dry. The pen is available in plain black and 10 other colours.

Amazon Customer Reviews: 578
Average Customer Review Rating: 4.3 out of 5 Stars

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5. Best Pens Review – PicoPen Stainless Steel Mini-Ballpoint Pen with Magnetized Keychain Holder

Image Source: Amazon

While this is one of the lightest, and smallest, pens we reviewed for this post, it is one of the true heavyweights of the best pens division. The size and weight make it a best-buy for portability. It has a magnetized cap that makes it easy to attach to a keyring or a briefcase buckle, or anything metallic.

Available in stainless steel or titanium, this is a quality construction, and it’s also a beautiful writer. You’ll easily take this with you anywhere. It won’t add any bulk even if you carry it in your pocket, and is perfectly comfortable to use. This pen is compatible with Fisher refills.

Amazon Customer Reviews: 39
Average Customer Review Rating: 4.1 out of 5 Stars

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6. Best Pens Review – Skilcraft LUMINATOR™ Red LED Tactical Light Pen

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The Skilcraft LUMINATOR™ is one of the most distinctive pens in our review, and one of the most versatile. If you work in the emergency services or in any job that requires you to work in the dark from time to time, this is the pen for you. With its red LED light at the tip, you’ll be able to take notes very easily indeed, regardless of the lack of light.

With an LED bulb that shines the light evenly, you will not be plagued by glare or vision impairment. The pen, with its non-reflective metal barrel, also uses pressurized ink cartridges, enabling the writer to use it from any angle or position.

Amazon Customer Reviews: 5
Average Customer Review Rating: 3.9 out of 5 Stars

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7. Best Pens Review – Valtev Tactical Pen

Image Source: Amazon

One of the most unusual pens in this post, the Valtev Tactical Pen is a three-in-one tool. Not only is it a very effective writing tool, it’s also a personal non-lethal defensive weapon as well as a glass breaker. Machined from T6061 aircraft-grade aluminium, this is an ultra durable defensive weapon that can be carried comfortably in a shirt pocket, purse on in a supplied belt-mount sheath.

It is comfortable to hold and use, and is a perfectly excellent writer, compatible with Parker QuickFlow or Fisher Space Pen refills. Its construction ensures that it will last for years to come, and comes with a hassle-free 30 day money back guarantee

Amazon Customer Reviews: 124
Average Customer Review Rating: 4.2 out of 5 Stars

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8. Best Pens Review – Pilot V Pen (Varsity) Disposable Fountain Pen

Image Source: Amazon

Finally for this review, the Varsity pen is typical of the disposable fountain pens made by the Pilot company. If you’re after the standard of handwriting made possible by a fountain pen but don’t want to fork out a massive investment for a high-grade pen, then this Pilot option is for you. The fountain nib and flow system is of a quality you’d expect from Pilot, but their disposability means that losing or misplacing one will not occasion major panic! Best of all, despite the budget price point, the finishing is quality, avoiding the plastic-y look that blights many pens selling at the affordable end of the scale.

Amazon Customer Reviews: 60
Average Customer Review Rating: 4.6 out of 5 Stars

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Best Pens – FAQ

Why invest in a great pen you may ask. The answer is quite simple. By investing in one of our picks for the best pens on the market, you are effectively sending a message. Whether for home use, or as something for the office, these pens are guaranteed to wow anyone and everyone you come into contact with. You may be unsure, after all, what really makes a good pen great? Well, check out our brief FAQs section below to get an idea.


What makes a good pen?

There are a number of factors to look out for when looking for the best pen to suit your needs. They are as follows:

Balance: When holding a top-quality pen, it should fit snugly into your hand without making you lift excessive weigh. Hold the pen in the writing position, and grip it lightly to see if the product is properly balanced. No side of the pen should be noticeably weighed down on either side while writing. Note: if the cap is designed to fasten onto the back of the pen while writing, carry out this test with the cap on the back of the pen for an accurate result.

The Point: Whether your preference lies with ball-point pens or fountain pens, the point should always be of the highest quality build. When it comes to fountain pens, be aware of whether it’s a steel or gold nib. Test out the tip by gliding it across a piece of paper; there should be no snags or tears. With regard to ballpoint, roller-ball, or gel pens, you should examine the mechanism for extending/retracting the tip. This should be smooth, and able to firmly hold the point in place when extended.

Finish: One of the most important factors is finish. Know the materials used in the pen’s design. Drag your finger over engravings to spot any rough spots. Remember that quality lies in the fine details, so closely examine any designs on your pen to spot any impurities.

Fit: This is what allows your pen to feel high quality. No parts should be loose, or ‘wiggly’. Everything should fit together perfectly, and the construction should be strong enough to weather everyday wear and tear. Things like the pocket clip should be just flexible for easy use, yet rigid enough to snap back into place every time that it is bended.

Warranty:Regardless of the product you’re buying, warranty coverage is always important to look out for. With many manufacturers of premium pens providing extensive warranty coverage plans, it helps to know what you are entitled to.


Ballpoint or Fountain pen?

Two of the most common types of pen out there today are the ballpoint pen, and the fountain pen. While one is steeped in historic nostalgia, the other features a more modern, and arguably convenient take on the pen. Really this all comes down to a matter of preference. If you have used a ballpoint pen throughout life, you may find fountain pens to be tricky to adjust to. Similarly, if you have been using fountain pens for a long time, you may find ballpoint pens to be unrefined, or less elegant.


Are the best pens expensive?

Yes and no. As is the case with many products, there are designer pens out there that will cost you quite a bit of money to acquire. That being said, you don’t necessarily have to fork out a lot of cash to find the best pen for you. In fact, you can find a perfectly good pen for under $30. Really the answer to this question depends upon how much you can afford to spend, and whether or not you believe owning a designer pen to be worth the cost.



To sum up our review of the best pens on the market, our advice would be to check out our FAQs section above, and with the relevant knowledge acquired, return to our list above, and apply some of the factors we have outlined to find the best pen for you.


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