Celebrate with the red, black, & blue: Pilot FriXion pens…AND a giveaway!


Pilot Frixion Retractables, 0.7 mm

The retractable Pilot FriXion pens are wonderful, but that wasn’t always the case. I first tried the FriXion pens years ago (capped version, weird tribalesque design on the barrel) and was, quite honestly, seriously underwhelmed. They erased well enough (yay!), but the ink was dreadfully washed out looking (boo!). Despite the novelty of being able to erase ink, the Frixions were quickly set aside.

THEN- a new generation of FriXion pens was born, and they truly are new and improved. The ink colors are stronger, especially the blue and red which are super. The black is much darker than the original washy gray, but isn’t super dark. Very nice, though. Take a look–


FriXion black


FriXion blue


FriXion red

The tips of these pens absolutely GLIDE across paper. They are a blast to write with. I use the pens for everyday writing but especially for writing in my Planner Pad and scribbling to-do lists in my Field Notes. A bit OCD, I hate cross-outs, so when plans and priorities change, being able to neatly erase INK is a big plus.

But how DO they erase? Let me show you–


Erased swatches


Erased letters

If you erase very soon after writing, the erasure is not as complete and clean as if you wait just a bit, but it’s still quite good.


Eraser ends

In reality, the ink is not actually erased (in the normal sense), but the “friction” (friXion, get it?!) made during the erasing action creates heat which makes the ink disappear. Which leads to one point of caution- DON’T LEAVE your notes/journals written with Frixion pens in a hot car! I’ve heard stories from distraught folks whose notes disappeared! (Hmmmm…may have to experiment with this! Be right back…I’m putting a page of notes in my car to see what happens.)

I’m back. Will report my findings later on.

After a little hiccup with my phone last week (lost all of my bookmarks for a bit…eek!), I decided to make sure that I have old school HARD COPIES of my address book and calendar, and I plan to use the FriXion pens to fill those out. Addresses & phone #’s change, as do commitments and appointments. I can erase and update without CROSSING OUT. A dream come true. (Okay, maybe a small dream, but a dream nonetheless.)


LOVE my Field Notes…but that’s another post!


Homemade Field Notes myCAL (used the 0.5 mm pens here)

I’ve also started dabbling with sketchnoting, and the FriXion line is PERFECT for this because I erase A LOT.

HAZWOPER training sketchnote

I’m certainly glad that I gave the Pilot FriXion pens a second chance because they are fun to write with, the ink colors are MUCH stronger, and the erasable feature is just too cool.


FriXion grips


FriXion clips & branding


Super smooth tips

So, this Fourth of July, think about celebrating with the RED, BLACK, and BLUE…FriXion pens, that is. These pens truly do deserve fireworks, and you can celebrate your independence from cross-outs!

Now for THE GIVEAWAY! Thanks to the fine folks at JetPens, I have a lovely little set of all three FriXions reviewed here to award to one lucky commenter. Here’s the scoop:

Leave a comment on this entry by 11:59 pm Sunday July 8th.
Each comment will be assigned a number (Comment #1 = 1, etc.).
The winning comment will be selected via random number generator on the evening of Monday July 9th and posted on this blog.

Stuff to remember:
ONE ENTRY per person, please.
USA only, at this time. (Sorry ’bout that.)

Happy Fourth of July, and good luck!

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
Edited to add RESULTS OF THE HOT CAR TEST:
[Click on any of the pictures for a larger version.]

The page BEFORE it was placed in a hot (mid 80′s outdoor temp) car for approximately three hours…

After three hours in a hot car, the page looked like this…

You’d be screwed if these were your chemistry notes! Or WOULD you be?

Here’s the page immediately after it was removed from the car…

Looks like the writing is starting to return.

And here it is after spending a little time (1/2 hour or so) in the freezer…

Mostly back! Phew! Your chemistry notes are safe, after all!

Despite the return o’ the writing, I’d still be careful using this pen for critical notes, if there’s a chance that the paper or notebook could be left in a hot car. Why take chances?

Thus endeth this afternoon’s Frixion experiment. You may now return to your lawn chairs.

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32 thoughts on “Celebrate with the red, black, & blue: Pilot FriXion pens…AND a giveaway!

  1. Ohhh I love love love your sketchnote!! What a brilliant idea! I’ve actually never heard of it before… what is sketchnoting? Journaling in drawings? Or.. daily planning in drawings? I hope that sketchnote is not your daily plan.. Ok I’m rambling. Loved the review. I have been dying to try the FriXions but I don’t like the ones in Staples – I much prefer this design! Thanks for the giveaway!!

  2. I absolutely adore the sketchnoting. Very entertaining to me, even though I understand zilt of it. My Frixion must be one of the first generations because the pigment is faded and does not erase the writing well. Your post has restored my faith! Thank you for the generous opportunity!

  3. My son loves the capped version of these pens as he is not the neatest writer. I would love to let him try these new ones too!

  4. Definitely would love to try this out! This kind looks much better than the ones you can get regularly!

  5. Yes, I shamelessly want the pens, as I’m cheap and I make a lot of mistakes. But your review was so good that perhaps, if fate isn’t on my side, I might actually purchase one. (But fingers crossed!)

  6. I literally JUST discovered these FriXion pens yesterday when I was waiting for my friend at the library’s gift store. The salesperson probably wasn’t too happy with my frantic writing and scribbling for the next 30 mins. Awesome contest!

  7. Wow, I was thinking about taking the bar exam with a FriXion in a few weeks – loved doing the practice exams this way – but the last bit about the heat and car is critical to know! I’ve heard that some bar graders pride themselves in whipping out the ‘red light’ essays : what takes you a stressful hour to write during the exam, they grade while in the drive through a McDonald’s. Too bad! But SO much better to know now than getting an unhappy notice in November.

  8. I bought the Frixion when it first came out years ago and hated it also. I saw the retractables at a store in Canada and bought one. I LOVE IT! I wish I had bought a dozen because I can’t find any in the KC stores (Office Depot, Office Max and Staples). Any idea where I can buy them? Also, my pen is the Frixion Clicker.

  9. Pingback: New Math: The Pilot FriXion Ball 3 Metal 3 Color Gel Multi Pen in Gradation Blue | From the Pen Cup

  10. This was a very nice review. I enjoyed it very much and I am going to try the Frixion soon.
    If you have the time and are intererested in it, would you like to do a review on how you use the Planner Pad and, if possible, also how you are using it in conjunction with your Field Notes?

    Thanks in advance!

  11. Pingback: Business Class: Pilot FriXion Biz Erasable Gel Pen | From the Pen Cup

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