9/26/2011 | Product Reviews


Motivation Monday – Pen-Fessional Review Of The Pentel Brush Pen

This review was written by Gabriel R., a Pentel PEN-fessional. Gabriel received no monetary compensation for this review.

The Pentel Pocket Brush Pen is one of my favorite drawing tools ever. That honor is now in jeopardy. Recently the fine folks of Pentel sent me a few samples of their Brush Pens. I received a few colors which I’ll review at a later time and a basic black brush pen, which I been using alot recently.


The pocket brush pen is the size of a writing pen that has a hard plastic barrel that has a brush nib with a removable cap. Ink comes from a cartridge that flows to the nib. Basic yet elegant and very effective.

Its big brother, the Pentel Brush Pen differs in many ways. This pen is larger and by larger I mean the barrel is longer and the brush tip is bigger. When I first opened the package the barrel was a little surprising, it was longer and tapered at the end and it also acts as the ink cartridge. The barrel screws into the actual brush nib. The nib is not hair of any type but is made of synthetic fibers that come to a fine point. All this and a cap.


To get the pen going you squeeze the barrel with the pen upside down and the ink flows into the nib. It’s neat to see the nylon turn from clear to black in a few seconds. After the brush is loaded with ink the pen is ready to go. Sketching commence!

The pen being longer actually feels quite comfortable. I thought I’d need to be more gentle holding the barrel since it’s squeezable to allow the ink out but it was fine and held up. The brush tip itself was extraordinary. It never lost its shape and was easy to get to a point. Since this brush is larger than the Pocket Brush Pen I thought it would be more difficult to get a finer and delicate line. It wasn’t. Part of the beauty of it was that it achieved a super fine line and by adding more pressure while sketching it could get a nice broad stroke. The brush stayed load with ink very well but it also can get a nice dry brush effect.

The Brush Pen passed the sketching and initial use test but it needed to pass another major test. I left the pen UNCAPPED to see if the actual brush would dry out. I came back to the pen about a day and a half later and when I tried to use it I got a dry brush effect. I flipped it over squeezed the barrel a bit and tested it out. It worked as good as day 1!

I would highly recommend this pen for any art endeavor. It’s such an awesome tool that gives great line variation and holds its own to any brush pen in the market. As a matter of fact it surpasses almost ANY brush pen on the market. I’ll be honest and say that sketching with a brush is difficult to master but is super fun to use and with a pen like this it’s easy to keep focused on the art and not get distracted with fussing with an inferior product.


Comment from Daniela
November 13, 2014 at 1:14 pm

I’ve been squeezing the pen but no ink comes into the nib. I purchased the Pentel Color Brush pen in black and I can’t get the ink to flow.

Comment from admin
November 13, 2014 at 1:34 pm

Hi Daniela, Sorry to hear that you are having trouble getting ink to flow to the tip of your Color Brush Pen. Can you please email your phone number to us at social@pentel.com? We will have someone from our Quality Assurance team contact you to troubleshoot. Thank you!

Comment from Dave m
November 13, 2014 at 10:23 pm

The answer is obvious. You need to push the ink cartridge in all the way so that a hole is poked in it, thus letting the ink out. Pull out the cartridge and see if you’ve poked a hole in the end. Be very carefully. If not, push the cartridge back in…harder, etc.

Comment from zc
November 27, 2014 at 9:58 pm

how do you push through the hole? is there a how yo video somewhere? I’m fearing I might break it if I do it wrong.

Comment from admin
December 1, 2014 at 12:50 pm

Hi zc,

Use firm pressure when loading the cartridge. It has to be pushed hard enough to puncture the top. Let us know if you have further questions!

Comment from Corey @tinysidekick.com
January 26, 2015 at 4:20 pm

You need to unscrew it and remove the red piece.

Comment from tanya
March 3, 2015 at 2:07 am


I just bought a Pentel Color Brush Pen 2 days ago and haven’t stopped using it. My problem is that it tends to dry out every so often creating a dry brush effect. If this happens, I need to wet the brush with water for the ink flow to be smoother. I was wondering if this is normal? I do hope you can help.


Comment from Matthew
January 11, 2017 at 11:19 am

I finally figured out the red ring needs to be removed in order to engage the cartridge, but when the pen is lightly squeezed, ink spurts out all over the place. Lousy pen. Lousy directions. I will advise our art school store to stop carrying these.

Comment from Helen
May 30, 2017 at 4:06 am

Hi, I bought a pentel brush pen (the one with the black cartridges) and the pen seems abnormally dry? I’ve tried it with multiple types of paper, and it’s definitely the pen. Basically, I can’t create a wide line without it looking like a quick, dry line. Am I doing something wrong with the pen itself or the cartridge?

Comment from Gima
December 17, 2017 at 6:42 pm

I bought the brush pen maybe a month or so ago and it was working wonderfully for, well, about the first month. But now, I’m having the opposite problem as most people are with a dry brush. Mine is flooding like crazy. Way too much ink comes out and just blobs and bleeds now. I kept it nib up for over a week to pull the ink away and somehow it seems worse than before! It’s a shame. I loved the heck out of this pen but I can’t figure out how to make it stop flooding.

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