The new school year is just around the corner and we’re sure you’re thinking about the important back to school stationery collection, excitedly wondering about new classes and perhaps worrying about your (*cough*… appalling) handwriting.
Handwriting is so important
, yet many people struggle. Problems ranging from poor finger placement and incorrect writing angle to serious medical issues can hinder writing ability.
Whether you’re picking up your first pen in a while or buying a pen for Little Timmy’s first day at school, it can be difficult to know where to start. Choosing the right pen can make a huge difference and this goes for beginners, those who struggle with their writing and returning writers alike.
To make it a little clearer we’ve outlined what to look for in a pen for ‘new’ writers and the best products which match these very practical criteria.
WHAT TO CONSIDER
Generally, a pen with a broader profile will be better as it gives a larger area to hold on to. Slim pens can be difficult for people to hold properly. This will hinder your ability to write; causing pain and cramped, untidy handwriting. We would recommend a pen of no less than 1cm in diameter.
Lighter pens are great for new writers. A heavy pen can mean your hands tire faster and it can feel unbalanced especially in smaller hands. You’ll want to be on the lookout for lightweight materials like plastic, resin and aluminium to ensure an agile writing experience.
You can usually find the pen size and weight on the product page. If they aren’t available, just contact us and we’ll be happy to provide these for you.
Many pens have specially designed grip sections to ease the writing experience. There’s a few different ways manufacturers enhance the grips:
This soft, yet resilient material is perfect for grip sections as it helps with control and stability. There will be no slipping, sliding or readjusting with a rubber grip in place.
Ribbed / Patterned
These use a raised design to help assist with holding the pen and avoid slippage. More widely used on pens than rubber grips but not quite as good at preventing slippage.
These are specially designed to encourage proper finger placement and assist with improving handwriting. Generally these alone will help avoid slippage in the hand, but some pens have a rubberised ergonomic grip for extra stability.
Ease of Use
This is an obvious category. Of course you’ll want a pen that’s easy to write with, but there’s a bit more to it than meets the eye. Look at each writing type in turn and there’s some important points to think about.
Most schools recommend using a fountain pen once you have a good grasp of holding a pen. This is because they have the smoothest and best ink flow. Using a fountain pen often encourages you to slow down and will inevitably improve your handwriting. You’ll want a good, sturdy nib which has a good flow of ink. If there’s a range of nib options
all the better, as then you can pick one that’s suited to your writing style.
Capless is always helpful. Then you don’t need to worry about losing parts. Generally a capless rollerball will also come with a gel ink refill which is smooth, free-flowing and dries quickly.
Look for a push button mechanism – easier to use one handed should the need arise. Quite a few also come with a stylus tip for touch screens which can help you whether you’re being digital or analogue.
These are the best bet for the youngest of writers, when they’ve progressed from crayons and standard wooden pencils. Choose a thicker lead
– these are less prone to breaking than the standard 0.5mm and 0.7mm leads. Avoiding the hassle of resetting your lead if it breaks will give you more time to think about and improve your writing.
OUR TOP PRODUCTS
Created by the company whom make “writers pens”, you already know you’re on to a winner. Crafted from aluminium this super light pen is still really durable and will last a lifetime. The pen features an ergonomic grip and a sturdy pocket clip. Lamy nibs are fantastically smooth and free-flowing, but also cheap and easily interchangeable (which really helps if you damage the nib). Plus, the range of nib sizes is second to none.
This ingenious rollerball pen has a unique capless mechanism; simply pull apart the upper and lower halves of the pen to extend the writing tip. Its wide but tapered profile is a joy to hold and the coloured lacquer options give added grip. Cross’ gel ink is a pleasure to use and is fast drying, so no more smudges! Cross also offer a lifetime guarantee on manufacturing defects.
The unusual ‘lightning bolt’ design of these writing instruments alters your writing angle and enables you to better see your writing. This in turn helps you to improve. If you can see it, you can improve it right?! Yoropens are made of lightweight injection moulded plastic and feature a rubberised ergonomic grip, which can be adjusted to suit right or left handers. Available as both ballpoint pens and pencils, these are the perfect pen for anyone whom suffers from medical issues
which affect their writing eg. stroke or arthritis.
An awesome little pocket pencil. Created by German company Worther, their pen and pencils are famously both practical and stylish. Featuring a hexagonal, wide profile barrel finished in tactile rubber, there is plenty to get hold of. The clutch style pencil uses a push button mechanism and holds a broad 3mm 3B(soft) lead, which Worther state will write on practically any surface. Worther also offer a lifetime guarantee on manufacturing defects.
This clever pocket sized ballpoint kills two birds with one stone. It combines both a unique pressurised refill which lasts longer*, avoids drying out, and will write on anything and anywhere+
, with a stylus tip compatible with most modern touch screen technology. Plus the fantastic rubberised grip is ribbed for extra stability.
This fountain pen is a firm favourite with new writers. Parker have specifically designed the durable stainless steel nib to be suited for both left and right handers, while the pen is a pleasing size and weight in practically any hand. Utilises Parker ‘Quinkflow’ ink technology which uses an alcohol based ink for faster drying.
Using all the same knowledge and craftsmanship they use in their more premium ranges, Platinum offer this superb value fountain pen. Featuring a sturdy stainless steel nib with excellent quality cut and flow, you’ll surely be pleased if you choose this pen. Made from lightweight aluminium, it’s an ideal starter pen.
*Writes 3x longer compared to standard ballpoint pen refills
+Performs in temperatures from -30ºF to +250ºF, underwater, in zero gravity, and at any angle – even upside down!