Which Personalized Pen Gift is Best?

By Samantha Di Nardo

Multiple Engraved gift pens

Which Personalized Pen Gift is Best?

By Samantha Di Nardo

Who would’ve ever imagined picking the best personalized gift pen would be so hard?

On one hand, the pen has to be functional enough and fit the standards of a gift without breaking the bank.

On the other hand, the chosen personalized pen gift has to be thoughtful enough to invoke a deeply personal connection between the giver and the recipient.

So, how do you strike a balance?

How do you pick the best personalized gift pen that you’ll both love?

Since 1994, Dayspring Pens has delivered hundreds of thousands of exclusive personalized pens to individuals and companies worldwide.

From our 25+ years of helping people give heart-warming and beautifully engraved pens, we’ve developed a comprehensive guide to help you pick the best one.

Choose the best personalized pens in these six easy steps.

What pen to gift infographic: all the steps you need to by a personalized gift pen

Step 1: Determine Who the Recipient Is

Who’s the personalized pen gift is for?

You? Your boss? Your father?

How you personalize is dependent on your relationship with the recipient.

If it’s a gift for a CEO, engraving the company’s logo next to their name is quite appropriate.

However, for a close relative or friend, you can change from formal to informal custom text.

At Dayspring Pens, we offer free standard engraving for each pen up to 25 characters.

For timeless engraved messages, we use CO2 and fiber optic laser engraving techniques.

To understand more about how we personalize pens, check out our ultimate guide to personalized laser engraving.

Step 2: Determine Writing Style

Do you, or the recipient of your gift, like thin and smooth lines, or prefer lines that are dark and bold?

There are four different types of personalized pen gift:

Each writes differently depending on:

  • Ink type
  • Tip shape

Ballpoint Pen

Ballpoint pens have a rounded tip, also known as a ballpoint.

They’re the most popular because they use smooth oil-based ink that dries faster than other pens.

Cross Calais Blue and Chrome Double Ballpoint Pen Set

Cross Calais Blue and Chrome Double Ballpoint Pen Set

The likelihood of smudging the ink when writing is extremely low; thus your text remains neat throughout. This makes these pens compatible with left-handed people.

The ink’s drying time is determined by the ballpoint’s diameter. Indeed, large ballpoints release more ink and take longer to dry.

Additionally, ballpoint pens cost less than rollerball and fountain pens.

However, because the oil-based ink has a high viscosity, you’ll need to apply more pressure to dispense the ink.

Further Reading: How to Get a Ballpoint Pen to Start Writing Again

Rollerball Pen

Rollerball pens have the same design as ballpoint pens, except they’ve got finer tips.

Water-based ink is used and is held in a reservoir.

Water-based inks have a lower viscosity than oil-based inks and flow out of the pen faster.

Waterman Expert Black Gold Trim Rollerball Pen

Waterman Expert Black Gold Trim Rollerball Pen

The smaller tip and the low-viscosity water-based ink allow you to write in smoother, thinner lines than ballpoint pens.

Also, you won’t need to press the rollerball pens hard to get the ink out.

As a bonus, the ink saturates deeply onto the paper, making your lines darker than those from ballpoint pens.

This may, however, present a problem for left-handed people. The water-based ink takes more time to dry. Therefore, it’s easy for left-handed people to smear the ink while writing from the left side to the right side of a page.

Rollerball pens leak easily, too, if placed upside down for too long. 

Fountain Pen

Besides their classy and elegant look, fountain pens are famous for making your signatures look fancy.

Fountain pens have nibs made of either gold or stainless steel instead of ballpoints. The nib’s shape allows you to change the thickness of the lines as you write.

Cross Bailey Medalis Fountain Pen

Cross Bailey Fountain Pen - Medalist

Fountain pens use water-based inks that are stored in an internal reservoir, hence the name “fountain”.

The water-based ink takes a long time to dry, and the probability of smudging the ink on paper is high.

Also, the ink’s low viscosity makes it leak easily.

However, fountain pens have a replaceable ink cartridge so they’re easy to refill.

Lastly, they cost more than ballpoint and rollerball pens and are often seen as luxury pens. Fountain pens are best suited for managers, heads of departments, and anyone in charge of approving certain processes.

Learn More: What Are the Types of Fountain Pens

Gel Pen

Gel pens use ink that’s suspended in a water-based gel.

This makes the ink thick but it produces smoother and bolder lines compared to other pens.

However, like rollerball and fountain pens, the ink is held in a refillable reservoir.

Since the water-based gel ink is thicker than the ink in fountain pens, it takes more time to dry. Therefore, it’s easier to make a mess with gel pens than it is with fountain pens. 

Parker Jotter in Kensington Red

Parker Jotter Gel Pen

Step 3: Determine How the Pen Will Be Used

Understanding the tasks the pen will be performing is useful in determining:

  1. Features to consider
  2. Personalization techniques

Features to Consider

Will the pen be used to mostly journal, take notes or write signatures?

A company’s CEO or a business person will want a pen with the best grip, as they’re more liable to write often. Consequently, some pens have smooth metal casings.

If held for long periods, finger cramping may occur.

This is where thoughtful ergonomic design comes in.

Monroe Pens and Pen Sets

Monroe Pens and Pen Sets

A pen with an ergonomic design should include a soft material such as rubber to provide a firm grip and also comfort to the fingers.

Ergonomic pens are the best gifts for authors, students, personal assistants, and therapists, as you’ll never catch them without a notebook in hand.

However, if your intended recipient only uses pens for signatures, don’t sacrifice on the metal. Surprise them with our beautifully crafted metal pens.

Personalization Techniques

There are two ways to personalize a gift pen—printing and engraving.

Printing involves putting the custom text and logo on the surface of the pen.

On the other hand, engraving is etching the characters deep into the pen’s surface using laser beams.

Printed text eventually fades due to constant use and passage of time.

However, engraved characters can withstand constant use and harsh environments without fading.

Thus, for a gift that’s meant to last a lifetime, engraving is the best personalization technique.

Step 4: Determine the Brand

Do you have a favorite brand?

If you like luxury pens, then you’ll want a brand that knows the difference between a regular pen and a pen that has character and taste.

That’s why here at Dayspring Pens, we only work with the best brands. So no matter which pen you choose, you’re guaranteed of the highest quality there is. Our brands include:

Step 5: Decide the Text to Be Engraved

So far, you’ve decided on the recipient, writing style, and the brand.

Now it’s time to add a personal touch.

Nothing beats engraving a line from the recipient’s favorite poem. It’s heartwarming and thoughtful.

For corporate gifts, you can have the recipient’s name or an achievement engraved next to the company’s logo.

If you need help coming up with a creative message, check out our occasion-themed pens for inspiration.

Step 6: Draw Up a Budget

Before making an order for your personalized pen gift, the final step is deciding how much you’re willing to spend on them.

If you’re on a tight budget, we’ve got a variety of affordable pens to choose from.

And if you’re looking to spend a little extra on an engraved pen because the occasion calls for it, there’s a list of luxury executive pens for you to look at.

Besides free standard laser engraving, we also ship out all engraved pens for free anywhere in the United States.

Furthermore, we offer discounts of up to 20 percent on bulk orders.

Therefore, whether you’re buying gift pens for one person or 10 people, you’ll stay within budget.

Related: How Much Does it Cost to Engrave a Gift?: Personalized Gifts on a Budget

Ready to Order Your Best Personalized Pen Gift?

Looking for a brand name ballpoint, a pen and pencil set, or a fountain pen?

You're sure to find just the right personalized pen gift from our variety of colors, shapes, and writing styles — Dayspring Pens gives you countless ways to appreciate the people around you.

And they can all come ready to present in a lovely gift box.

Visit our shop and order from our amazing collection of custom executive pens today.

Has this guide helped you make a decision on what pen to get as a gift? Tell us which one you like in the comments.

Waterman Expert Pens and Pen Sets

Waterman Expert Pens and Pen Sets

Frequently Asked Questions

How much does an engraved pen cost?

Depending on the quality of the personalized pen gift, they can run for anywhere between $5 and $5,000, but most engraved luxury pens sit between $25 and $120.

How much does a personalized pen gift cost?

At Dayspring Pens, engraving is completely free! 

Other websites usually charge between $5-$15 for custom engraving.

What kind of pens can be engraved?

Most pens with high-quality plastic, lacquer, wood, or metal can be engraved easily!


Engraving at Dayspring Pens takes only one business day. So you can expect to receive your order in record time!

However, if you’re in a hurry, upgrade your order to a rush delivery order. This guarantees the personalized pen gift order is processed and shipped out in one day.

Want to explore more ideas on engraved gifts? Check out our definitive guide to engraved pens

Featured image: Pixnio

Sam Di Nardo

Sam Di Nardo is an author for Dayspring Pens, where she has honed her expertise in ballpoint, rollerball, gel and fountain pens since joining the team in 2018.

From her initial role as an Engraver to becoming the Production Manager, Sam's journey has been marked by her passion for the history, manufacturing, and the unique value of gifted writing instruments.

A graduate of Regent University with a degree in English Literature and a special interest in Old Norse literature, dive deeper into Sam's world and discover why she's your trusted guide in the realm of gift pens.

Follow Sam on LinkedIn.

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