The wide variety of Japanese stationery that have both high functionality and high-quality design has gained a lot of popularity internationally. So, here are some conveniently lightweight mechanical pencils and ballpoint pens.
1. OLEeNU+ (Platinum)
The OLEeNU series that earned popularity as the original unbreakable mechanical pencil, has a new addition: the OLEeNU+, its strongest model yet. This mechanical pencil has various mechanisms in place to protect the lead from breaking due to excessive pressure when writing or to shock when dropped. These include protection against shaking the interior that holds the lead, shock absorption and a dual-structure pen tip cover. It even has a “zero lead function” that allows you to continue writing up until the lead reaches 0.5mm remaining, eliminating lead waste.
Suggested price: 450 JPY (excl. tax)
2. Orenz (Pentel)
This is a product from veteran stationery maker, Pentel. The lead of ordinary mechanical pencils protrudes from the sleeve at the end of the pencil, which makes it easy for the lead to break when applying strong pressure while writing. T
In contrast, the Orenz has a sliding sleeve, which makes it possible to write without the lead protruding from it. Because the lead is not exposed, lead breakages and wearing are minimal, despite using superfine leads as small as 0.2mm. With one click you can write continuously for a long time. This is the perfect pencil for writing in small spaces and drawing fine details of illustrations.
Suggested price: 500 JPY (excl. tax)
3. Jetstream Multi-Function Pen 4&1 (Mitsubishi Pencil)
This multi-function pen is a 4-color (black, red, blue & green) ballpoint pen and a mechanical pencil all in one. As the slogan “smooth writing you’ll get accustomed to” suggests, this pen has low friction, giving a comfortable smooth feel to your writing, no matter the speed. The new Jetstream ink is easily absorbed into the paper and excels in fast drying, meaning even if you brush your hand over what you’ve just written, your hand won't get dirty with ink smudges. Also, the ink doesn't clump easily, so you can write beautifully from start to finish. The stylish design makes this great for use at the office.
Suggested price: 1,000 JPY (excl. tax)
4. Frictionball 4 (Pilot)
The hugely popular erasable “Frixion” series of ballpoint pens is sold worldwide in over 100 countries, with a total of over 2 billion pens sold. That’s just how popular it is. It uses special ink that can be erased with frictional heat that doesn’t leave eraser dust, making for clean erasing every time. The pen is a superfine type, with a 0.5mm tip, appropriate for writing in pocket diaries and memo pads. This one pen contains four different colors: black, red, blue and green. You can use each for different purposes, making it easy to keep your schedule organized.
Suggested price: 800 JPY (excl. tax)
5. Sarasa Clip (Zebra)
The Sarasa Clip is another popular choice for its smooth, comfortable writing feel, great ink color, and abundant variety of colors to choose from. The pen uses a water-based pigment that has excellent water resistance, enabling you to write effortlessly. Another great point about this pen is the range in ball diameter from 0.3mm to 1.0mm so you can use different sizes according to your purpose. With 56 colors to choose from, you’ll find the perfect color to suit your mood.
Suggested price: 100 JPY (excl. tax)
These are just some items that you can easily get you hands on in Japan. You can test them in large-scale stationery stores to find out just how comfortable to use they really are. You're sure to find the one pen that suits you best.
*Please note that the information in this article is from the time of writing or publication and may differ from the latest information.
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