JetPens.com is the online store that supplies fountain pens, gel pens, ballpoint pens and more writing instruments than I can list. They have a huge selection, but I was on the hunt for a hardworking, smooth-writing white pen that can write on colored stock as well as on acrylic and watercolor paint.
As a recovering perfectionist, I was hoping the ink would also be fast-drying. If the pen put down a smooth line, sold for a decent price, well, that would be a plus.
For a white pen to be good, the ink has to cover evenly. It also has to start when you put it on paper (no scribbling to get it started), and the line has to cover the black paper completely, without having to go back and re-ink a line.
That’s a lot to demand from a pen, but hey, I can dream. I tested three pens from JetPens–the Hybrid Gel Grip, the Uni-Ball Signo Angelic and the Uni-Ball Signo 153. Each of these pens has a distinct use, and each write an opaque white.
The Hybrid Gel Grip puts down a smooth, white line, dries matte and doesn’t smear after just five seconds to dry. I often use pens left-handed, and in my tests the pen did not write as evenly when used left-handed as it did right-handed. The pen writes a 0.8 mm line. The removable lid posts securely on the back and the non-slip grip is useful for those who have a strong grip or arthritis. Information on JetPen’s site says they are also excellent for pen spinning. It’s well balanced, but I can’t judge it as a spinning pen. Price: $2.00
I loved the Hybrid until I tried the Uni-Ball Signo Angelic. Uni-Ball and I had a tough start a few years ago, and I’ve never warmed to them. I will admit I was skeptical that I would get what I wanted from this pen. I was pleasantly surprised. The pen puts down a smooth, 0.7mm line of solid white writing. It does details well. It dries in under five seconds. Fills in gaps. Dries matte. I also tried it on red paper and was satisfied with the coverage. Because I like fine-point pens, I like the fact that a slightly steeper angle (pen held more vertically) gives you a slightly heavier coverage. In the sample above (underneath the first set of dots) you can see the ‘ail’ in ‘details’ seems to be heavier. These are also letters that give double strokes in cursive, but I enjoy the ebb and flow of this pen. Cap posts securely on back of pen for writing. Comes in additional colors. Price: $1.80.
For a smooth-writing, heavier line pen, choose the Signo Broad UM 153. This was my immediate favorite. The ink comes out bright white, in a creamy consistency and a smooth, flowy line. No re-writing. Dries to a semi-gloss finish that you can just barely feel as raised on the paper. Cap posts securely on back of pen. You can see a faint smear on the five-second test, but none on the 10-second test. Comes in other colors. Price: $2.25
Personally, I prefer the Uni-balls to the Hybrid. You can read the reviews with each pen and make up your own mind.
Full disclosure: The pens were sent for review from JetPens. I have not used them in every project I have planned.
Giveaway tomorrow, Thursday, June 2: In order not to profit from any pen I review, I will be holding a give-away in tomorrow’s post–where I’ll also review the fiber-tip Copic Spica sparkle pens.