Spirograph and Gel Pens – The Best Arty Choices in 2022


Spirograph drawings - these are the best pens for Spirograph

I bought PaperMate InkJoy gel pens and my life was forever changed. And no, this isn’t a sponsored post, I just LOVE the things.

I’ve posted about them on my Instagram feed, and when I put up my latest photo of them, my buddy Alison mentioned that you could use these with the Spirograph.

I’ve been eyeing the old Spirograph lately, willing myself to muster up the energy to lift it off the shelf, and boy did this do the trick. Thank you, Alison.

These are such great pens for Spirograph

Hello, Spirograph.

Some more about Spirograph:

  • I hate using the non-circles to try to draw with, because they slip and make me cry.
  • I hate the circles that only make one single closed shape and then stop.
  • I hate the pen colors that come with it because they are boring and hateful.

Spirograph problems

Best Pens for Spirograph in 2021


Crayola Fine Line Markers

The Crayola fine line markers are very smooth and brilliant for adult art enthusiasts. The markers are incredibly ‘juicy,’ so you don’t have to worry about the markers drying out in the middle of a project. You can use these markers for spirograph art if you work quickly. These markers are more appropriate for adults and less suitable for children. 

These markers are very versatile and can be used for lots of adult arts and crafts, not just for coloring and spirograph, making them good value for money too. The markers take a long time to dry out, which is rare for coloring markers. 

Take note that the colors are a little bit darker than the color on the cap. The colors are dense, so that could bother some artists, but for amateurs and hobbyists, this shouldn’t be a problem and often goes unnoticed. 

PILOT Precise V5 Stick Pens 

Ok, so these aren’t gel pens either, but they are brilliant for creating spirograph designs. The tips of the pens are very thin, so although they are ballpoint pens, they don’t stick and are great solutions for anyone who is sick of using gel pens. 

Kids and adults can use these pens, and there is a hand full of colors to choose from to keep things diverse and interesting. You can also use these pens for writing and doodling, so having this set in your arts and crafts kit will certainly benefit you one way or the other! 

The colors are bright and vibrant; even the yellow pen is noticeable and stands out on white paper. Mixing and matching the pens is easy, and if you want to create a half-and-half spirograph design, you can switch between two colors seamlessly. 

VaOla Gel Pens 

These gel pens are just brilliant! They are very comfortable to work with and have a durable metal tip that stops the ink from bleeding. The pen’s base is covered with a latex insert for maximum comfort when using them for a long time. 

This set contains a mixture of pastel, neon, metallic, and glitter colors. The ink is non-toxic, which is very important if your children are going to take them to school with them or use them to create spirograph art. 

What makes this set one of the best pen sets for spirograph is that the pens have a thicker than usual ink rod, giving you more ink and more uses. If you are looking for great value for money, this set is it! 

Soucolor Glitter Gel Pen Kit 

The Soucolor glitter gel pen kit contains 122 multi-colored gel pens. The pens have 40% more ink than standard gel pens, which is perfect for doodling, children’s coloring, scrapbooking, and more. 

You get a styling bag with a sturdy zipper to keep the pens in, along with a small coloring book and a full set of replacement cartridges. This set will last you months or even years, depending on how much you use it. 

They are as smooth as silk, making your coloring experience all the more enjoyable. The only improvement to the set I would make is to add some more shades of brown and gray to the set, but with that being said, the colors are super bright and noticeable, even the light shades! 

Overall, these gel pens are superb for children and adults. You won’t run out of things to do with this set, that is for sure! 

Spirograph Jr. Kit

What a wonderful gift for children! You and your children are guaranteed hours of fun with this spirograph set. Just place the paper on the board and start drawing! 

The box is innovatively designed to keep the gears and pens in one place, and it is a drawing board. This makes it perfect for traveling, and it can even be used easily in the car, on a bus, or even on a train or plane. 

This pack certainly will spark a child’s imagination, and you will be surprised by the imaginative drawings and spirograph designs that will be made using this set. The set uses half of a piece of paper, preventing paper wastage. 

Unfortunately, you can not get refills for the pens, which is a huge shame as these pens dry out very quickly. There are also only two colors in the set; a red pen and a blue pen. However, you can simply swap the spirograph pens with your favorite gel pen color once the originals have dried up! 

DasKid Gel Pen Set 

WOW! The DasKid gel pen set contains 24 glitter gel pens, 12 metallic pens, six pastels, and six neon colors, plus 48 matching color refills! That means you get 96 artist gel pens for a very low price. 

This set also comes with a sturdy carry case with a layout that is perfect for color coding and arranging. It is lightweight, compact, and professional-looking. You can take this set anywhere with you, and it even looks smart and professional for the office! 

The metal tip is sturdy and allows the ballpoint tip glides smoothly over paper and cardboard. These pens aren’t just wonderful for spirograph; you can use them to write invitations, for coloring, and for work. 

If you are looking for a gel pen for coloring in with and for coloring books, then this might not be for you as the tips are very fine. Pens with fine tips take longer to color with, but they sure are precise! 

Spirograph Travel Set

Here is another Spirograph set. This set is smaller than the other set featured in this review and ideal for spirograph only. 

The set is pocket-sized, and it too has a built-in storage tray that will keep all of the spirograph pieces together. You get a 24-page pad, six spirograph gears, two pens, and a design guide in the set to help you.

If you want to find a way to entertain yourself or your children during a long flight, this set is perfect for you! It is super convenient, and everything fits into the set perfectly. This is a very important feature for a children’s art set as most of the time, pieces get lost or damaged if there isn’t an innovative way to store them. 

You don’t need to be a spirograph pro to use this set either, which makes it great for children. The paper is sticky on the back, helping it stay in place as you swirl and twirl the gears.

So, I proceeded to Spirograph my little heart out yesterday, and Fen joined me. Beckett couldn’t deal after his first failed attempt and he went back to naked stuffed animal wars.

These pens are awesome with Spirograph

It was so fun and these are awesome pens for Spirograph. I had so much more patience than when I was a kid when I rushed through making designs. Remember when you’d get through almost the entire Spirograph pattern and then suddenly your hand would slip? There’s no greater frustration.

I don’t remember the original Spirograph coming with tacky goo to hold down the outer circles, either, but this is a life saver if you don’t want your hands to cramp up like gnarled tree branches.

These pens are awesome with Spirograph

Spirograph Tips:

Please, for the love of your sanity, use card stock and not flimsy printer paper. The ink will rip through almost immediately.

Throw out the box and store your pieces in a gallon ziplock bag or plastic box with the pamphlet and paper.

Check out the pamphlet- it’s full of Spirograph tricks

Experiment with warm colors together, cool colors together, and ALL THE COLORS

Make a card for someone

Make a small Spirograph design on your math homework and see if you get extra points

Color in some Spiro-designs

Make temporary tattoos from your scanned Spirograph designs with this tattoo paper

Oh, about the pens. I almost bought some more today and couldn’t believe the price had gone down $5. Then I realized I was looking at the roller ball pens, which look deceptively like the gel pens. I haven’t tried the roller ball pens, and can only imagine the sad sadness one might feel if one expects to be buying the gel pens but gets confused and buys stupid roller ball pens instead.

Resources Mentioned in This Post


Papermate Inkjoy Gel Pens

White Card Stock

Temporary Tattoo Paper

These pens are awesome with Spirograph

What do you think?

Written by Joanne Gonzales

Joanne Gonzales has a passion for getting creative. Whether she is making personalized DIY gifts or taking part in larger arts and crafts projects, she puts her all into making new and beautiful things.

She lives with a group of close friends and believes in the natural way of life. Joanne has built an outdoor arts and crafts gallery that overlooks the countryside in her hometown, which is where all of her creations come to life.

Art started off as a hobby, but over time Joanne has mastered her skills and sold some of her favorite pieces. She works full time as a florist and has done for many years. It helps keep her creative juices flowing and she hopes to one day open her own florist shop with a twist.


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  1. You are correct. The original Spirograph did not come with tacky goo; it came with straight pins and you had a cardboard base to pin your paper onto. I like the tacky goo so much better! It still works best for me with a board of some kind under the paper. I bought about the least expensive Papermate Inkjoy pens… they are wonderful.

    For the circles that make a single enclosed shape and then stop, leave the outer ring in place and try moving your start position to the left or right of your original start position. Remember to use the same hole you started with so you’ll get another copy of the same shape in a slightly different position. You can get a progressive shape, but it requires patience and moving your start position after every completed shape. Yeah, a bit tedious, but still better than the single shape.

    You might find this site interesting:

  2. Hi…some people will think I’m mad but I just bought a Super Spirograph kit (complete) from eBay. I guess most people of my age are doing matchstick models and wicker baskets etc haha but the kid in me is still there. I bought some Pilot V5 Hightechpoint pens which are great…not tried the gel pens yet. My only real problem is what to draw the designs on. You’re right about plain inkjet paper…3 times round the wheel and the pen goes right through it…grrrr. What do you recommend…I have heavy buff coloured card somewhere that I’ll try later. Also, the pins get on my nerves…they work ok but I hate seeing pin holes in the finished job.

    Anyway…thanks for a really informative page…it’s nice to go back to a world where I never wanted to grow up 🙂

    Have a great day 🙂

  3. I am going to go buy a Spirograph set as soon as I can afford one. After I get that home I will remove all the pieces to put in a bag, and then display the box on a shelf. I haven’t had a set for a long time.

  4. I love the Paper Mate Ink Joy pens – but now I have found something better. Paper Mate Profile Bold 1.4 mm ballpoint pens. They don’t smear, and they write so smoothly. They are great for drawing the Spirograph designs, and then I use the Ink Joy pens to fill in colors.

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