“Ice cream smooth.”
So today I’ll be reviewing something I’ve wanted for SO LONG AHHH. A white gel pen!
Yes. This is what I’ve been wanting forever. I draw quite a bit and have always wanted something to add highlights and write on colored paper with. A white gel pen is an answer. For a few months, I would use Wite-Out pens, but we all know how that turns out. They dry up, take too long to activate, scratch up your paper, let the liquid out inconsistently, and leave a crusty mess behind. So no, they aren’t the best to use as actual pens.
This has just turned into a roasting sesh for Wite-Out, hasn’t it?
So that’s why I was so excited to find a pack of three at a local Michaels for about 3 bucks. Pretty good deal, especially for being such a large brand.
It’s time to run a series of tests to see if these pens were actually worth it.
Packaging – Front View
Packaging – Side View
Packaging – Back View (If anyone reads these other than me…)
This small swatch was actually not that bad. There did seem to be a little bit of pooling with the ink, but I think that’s because it’s just sitting on white paper with black ink. If I had used black-dyed paper, I assume it would have worked better. Other than that I’m super happy with the opacity and everything.
Just for some added context, I did have to cut a piece of black paper out of a Reader’s Digest issue because I couldn’t find any black paper.
Test #1: Feathering
On their official website, Sakura of America claims that there is “[n]o feathering or bleed-through on most papers” with their Gelly Roll™ pens. Let’s test that, shall we?
I wrote a little sample thing on a sticky note for these tests. Let’s take a closer look for feathering.
As far as I can see, no feathering! You may be wondering what feathering means; It’s when the ink branches off along the fibers of the paper and sort of bleeds around the place you put the tip. But gel pens usually don’t do that, and that applies to this one too!
Feathering Test: 10/10
Test #2: Bleeding
Bleeding is like feathering, but through a paper rather than along it. If you can see the ink on the other side, the pen has bled. It’s more common in liquid pens than in gel or ballpoint, but let’s give this a go…
Nope! All clear!
Bleeding Test: 10/10
Test #3: Smearing
Sakura tells us that there will be no smearing — and here’s the key phrase — once it’s dry. I was pretty skeptical of that until I read the second bit, as it is a liquid-based pen and smearing is, unfortunately, common in gel pens. But I waited for about 10 seconds for it to dry (I do like how fast it dries) and then rUBBED it.
And nothing happened! (I promise I really tried to get it to smear, but this pen is just too good.
Smear Test: 10/10
Test #4: Opacity
This was more of a personal preference test rather than something the company claims they will pass. I really like gel pens to be opaque, so I decided to conduct this ~extra~ test.
I literally just scribbled on a piece of paper with black ink, waited for it to dry, and then colored over half of it with the Sakura pen and the other half with Wite-Out, the ultimate opaque white liquid.
So… not too great. In terms of smoothness, this wins ALL the points compared to Wite-Out. Wite-Out was rough AF. But it was still very transparent. I assume the Sakura pens work better when you’re just writing something, not coloring. It’s not too big of a deal anyway; Sakura never said these were 100% opaque. It would have been nice if it worked, though.
Opacity Test: 3/10
Grade: 90% (A-)
I honestly really love this pen! It does everything it was supposed to, and I’m super happy to finally own one of these. Good job, Sakura. You have pleased me. Can’t wait to use these more!
Thank you guys so much for reading. I’ll see y’all next week!