Pros: Smooth writing. Comfortable barrel grip. Non-bleeding ink.
Cons: Expensive. Questionable exterior design choices. Sharpie trying to hard to "upgrade" original.
When Sharpie first came out with the pens, I was the first in line. I obsessed about them and told everyone how great they were. The other day I saw a commercial for Sharpie Retractable Fine Point Pens, so I headed up to the store.
The original Sharpie pens were slightly on the expensive side (for disposable pens anyway), but they were well worth the $1.50 each. A set of 2 retractable Sharpie pens set me back a whopping $6. That is $3 each. I had a little bit of sticker shock.
I got the pens home and immediately whipped out some paper to test them out and see how they stood up against the original pen. I have to say, I am kind of let down. It is still a good pen that I will continue to use, but probably won't buy them again in the future. I would have been happy if they just took the original pen and stuck a clicker on the top. Instead they tried to upgrade something that really didn't need upgrading.
The "button" on top of the pen is almost a full inch tall. It just seems a little weird. Traditional retractables are only about 1/2" tall (or smaller). It should really be shorter. I think it looks silly and feels clunky.
I am also a little confused why they would make the top button and the clip a shiny metallic. Yes, it makes the pen a little fancier, but at its core, it is still a disposable pen. The major problem I have with this pen is that Sharpie seems to be trying to appeal to the couture writing implement audience. In their attempt, they are alienating people like me by forcing us to pay $3 for a disposable pen when I was perfectly happy with the original. I guess the joke is on me.
This pen offers a soft grip along the barrel that makes it really comfortable to hold. Since it is a little wider barrel, the occurrence of hand cramps is minimized. But, the drawback to the wide barrel is that it dwarfs the actual pen. The size of the barrel is more suited for a ball point pen or fine marker, not a teeny, tiny ultra fine point. It seems like a sizing mismatch.
With all the questionable exterior design choices that were made, I still find the actual pen to be a great addition to the Sharpie family. The writing is ultra smooth and holds true to the "non-bleeding ink" promise. Unless you are writing on onion skin or tracing paper, the ink really does not bleed through your paper. They also claim that the ink is acid-free. So, it would be great for all you scrapbookers!
I know it sounds weird, but I love the color of the blue ink. Most blue ink pens are so dark that they are almost black. This one is a bright (but not too bright) true blue color that stands out nicely on documents.
Ultimately, if you are a fan of the original Sharpie pens, you will probably like this product, but why not stick with the original and save some bucks.