Highlighter Pen For Note Taking

The Best Highlighter Pen Choices To Use For Note Taking

Back to school is just around the corner, and whether you’re a college student getting ready for a new semester or a parent getting ready to send their child off to a new school year, that means it’s time for back-to-school shopping. Getting the right supplies for success in a new school cycle is critical, and few skills are more important to prepare for tests than proper note-taking. That’s why having the best highlighter pen to make sure no important piece of information is forgotten is one of the best ways you can set yourself or your little student up for a great year.

Many people think picking the best highlighter pen is an easy decision (one pen is as good as the next, right?), but the highlighter pen market is getting bigger than ever, and pens come in a wide variety of styles and quality levels. Finding the right highlighter pen can avoid awkward situations since no one wants their pen to die in the middle of a lecture. Too many students only find out that their highlighter is a dud with a short lifespan when it runs out of ink at the most inconvenient time.

The good news is, the market has some quality, value-driven highlighter sets for those who know where to shop. That’s why here at Prepare to Present, we’ve put together a list of the ten best highlighter pens on the market today. Read on to discover the ten best highlighter pens and sets to turn the next note-taking session into a breeze that will keep your notes safe for the long term.

Top Picks:

Top 10 Best Highlighter Pen Reviews -2023

1. BIC Brite Liner Highlighter, Chisel Tip

Ideal for those who like colorful products, this low-cost set comes in traditional yellow alone with pink, blue, green, and orange—perfect for coding your notes, or just creating colorful doodles. They deliver clear, bright colors without leaking through to the next page, and the bright fluorescent ink is spread well thanks to the broad chisel tip. When precision is needed, the tip can deliver thin lines for underlining, making this an all-around solid choice for a child’s first highlighter or a dependable option for anyone.

2. Sharpie Tank-Style Highlighters, Chisel Tip

When you think of highlighters, the odds are good you think of these classic yellow pens with the bright yellow ink from iconic marker-maker, Sharpie. The company has dominated the marker and highlighter industry for decades thanks to their reasonably priced products that deliver a clear highlight without spilling over onto other pages. The supply of ink in each highlighter is among the biggest in any marker on this list, and the chisel tip lets you create both long broad streaks and fine lines. The Smear Guard ink technology prevents smudging for a cleaner highlight—a welcome feature for left-handed people.

3. Sharpie 1912769 Clear View Highlighters, Chisel Tip

A four-pack of highlighters that comes in yellow, pink, orange, and green, this high-tech model from Sharpie has a broad base and a fine see-through tip that eliminates blind spots by letting you see what you’re highlighting. Combined with Sharpie’s trademark Smear Guard ink, this pen set is the perfect way to avoid smears and get clear, long-lasting highlights in your textbooks. The bright colors are perfect for drawing your eyes to whatever you marked, making studying a snap compared to the faint monotone ink you can get with inferior highlighters.

4. GTL Accu-Gel 6 Piece Bible Study Gel Highlighter Set

This highlighter set is produced by a Christian company for Bible study, but it’s a quality pen set ideal for any note-taking or highlighting thanks to the six pens in distinct colors: violet, yellow, pink, orange, blue, and green. The precise tip size is perfect for underlining and glides smoothly across the page without bleeding through the typically thin pages of a bible. However, the tip is too thin for block highlighting. It can co-exist with other inks without smearing, and the long-lasting gel stick technology moves by twisting the base, making it more comfortable to hold than other models.

5. Avery HI-LITER Desk-Style Highlighters

An ideal budget choice for young kids who might lose their highlighters at school, this simple four-marker set comes in a quartet of bright colors: yellow, pink, green, and orange. Their model is like Sharpie’s classic marker, with a chunky base for easy gripping and a tapered tip that works effectively for both fine underlining and block highlighting.

The multiple colors are ideal for coding notes based on subject, and the non-toxic ink is safe for kids who may bite on their marker during a test. The small package size makes them an ideal choice for parents who want to test out this brand, but the per-marker price is higher than other options.

6. Zebra MILD LINER, Double Sided Highlighter

If you’re a fan of delicate colors, this Japanese marker company provides aesthetically appealing colors that won’t break the bank with this pack of thin highlighters coming in pastel-tinged pink, orange, yellow, green, and blue. The muted colors are easier on the eyes—something you’ll appreciate during an extended study session when bright colors can get blurry. They feel more like traditional pens in hand and, the thin tips aren’t ideal for block highlighting, but they’re long lasting and among the best choices on the list for underlining.

7. Sharpie 28101 Accent Retractable Highlighters, Chisel Tip

If you want a highlighter that functions more like a pen, this five-pack of thinner markers will win you over thanks to their slim build for easy gripping and their retractable tips; gone are the days of messy ink mishaps with exposed highlighters. Coming in striking yellow, pink, blue, green, and orange, this pack has all the quality you’ve come to expect from Sharpie. The low cost and small fit make them a perfect choice to add into your pencil case, and the ink is dispensed in smaller amounts, so it’s unlikely to run through to the next page.

8. Sharpie Liquid Highlighters, Chisel Tip

You won’t find a better low-cost option than these highlighters from Sharpie’s classic line. For less than the price of many plain sets, you get a ten-pack of colored highlighters that use Sharpie’s liquid ink technology to deliver a smoother experience. The colors cover every shade of the rainbow, and their vibrant liquid ink is brighter than normal highlighter ink, making them perfect for studying in low light.

The visible ink supply lets you know when you’re close to running out, and the chisel tip glides smoothly to avoid smudging. These pens attach to binders with a notched clip and are small enough to fit in a standard pencil kit.

9. Staedtler Textsurfer Classic 364 Highlighter

The highest-end highlighter kit on the list, this collection of eight pens from renowned pen maker, Staedtler, comes in yellow, orange, red, pink, purple, blue, teal, and green. They’re designed with an ink reservoir bigger than any other pen on the list, so even though you’re paying more up front, you know you’re getting your money’s worth—and they’re inkjet safe, meaning they won’t smear when highlighting over other ink.

The twist-off caps are easy to open and the soft chisel tip is ideal for both fine and block highlighting. A unique feature is the automatic pressure equalization system, ideal for highlighting on airplanes without ink leaks.

10. Sharpie 27145 Pocket Highlighters, Chisel Tip

The lowest-cost entry on the list, this twelve-pack of thin markers from Sharpie comes with three yellow, two pink, two orange, two green, two blue, and one violet marker for a varied set that any kid (or kid at heart) will love. The chisel tip is perfect for both fine underlining and block highlighting, and Sharpie’s popular Smear Guard ink technology means it won’t ruin the printing or writing on your notes when you highlight. The pens are small enough to fit in a pencil case and easy to grip, but their fluorescent ink is bright enough to stand out on a page.

You get what you pay for, and the ink supply is well below what you’d get with higher-end pens. The number of pens you get and the cost of the package makes it a good deal, but make sure you have more than one pen on hand for longer lectures or study sessions.

Best Highlighter Pen FAQ

Before we move on to our list of the ten best highlighter pens, we’ll take a moment to answer some frequently asked questions on the subject.

What Is a Highlighter Pen and Why Is It Useful for Taking Notes?

A highlighter pen is a broad-tipped pen that releases a colored, wet ink—usually yellow, but sets come in multiple colors. It covers the area around the text without blocking the text, eliminating the need to write notes down by highlighting the most important topics in a textbook.

Are the Best Highlighter Pens Erasable?

Erasable highlighter pens exist, but most are designed to be permanent. They should only be used in books you own or are authorized to highlight, but resales of highlighted texts are common, as the notes are pre-made for the next student.

Why Do the Best Highlighter Pen Sets Come in Multiple Colors?

Part of the appeal is personal taste in colors, but many students use different colors to code their textbooks, using different colors for different topics.

How Long Do the Best Highlighter Pens Last?

This depends on how much you use the pen, but most of the best highlighter pens are built to last at least one semester of regular use.

Where Can I Buy the Best Highlighter Pens?

The best highlighter pens are available on Amazon, at major office supply stores, and big-box stores like Walmart and Target. A limited selection can be found wherever stationary is sold.


white highlighter pen
Image via Pexels

A good highlighter can be a useful study tool, and the ten highlighter pen sets on this list delivered in terms of bright, clear ink and a lack of smudging and bleeding. We were impressed with the lineup from dominant marker company Sharpie, which had five of the ten items, and all of them delivered good value and strong ink quality. The classic yellow highlighter in bulk is ideal for a busy college student, but the colored options are a better deal if you want to code your notes.

The other options on the list also delivered solid performance, with the Japanese pastel highlighters from Zebra being perfect for their attractive appearance and their easy-on-the-eyes ink. However, we were most impressed with a high-end model that becomes a bargain when you look at the added features it delivers. Thanks to its deep ink reservoir, its inkjet-safe ink, and its smooth performance, we give the Staedtler Textsurfer Classic 364 highlighter our endorsement as the best highlighter pen set on the market today.

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