Highlighters, or highlighter pens, are felt-tip pens used for emphasising text. The ink is bright, if not fluorescent, and translucent, drawing attention to the text while leaving the text perfectly visible. Highlighter pens emerged in the 1970s. The Avery Dennison Corporation trademarked the Hi-Liter® name in the early 1990s. We'll all remember using bright yellow, green or pink highlighters before exams at school as we equated the highlighting with committing to memory. A densely highlighted page of text meant we had understood near to nothing.

Highlighter pens are naively futuristic and classic at the same time and have become firmly entrenched in the lexicon of stationery. We'll always love them.

Tip types

Highlighter pens have two main types of tip or nib:

  • Bullet tip. Nib most normally used, because the nib is rounded you can hold the pen however you like and the stroke will be the same at all times.
  • Chisel tip. Wedge-shaped pens which mean they have both a broader edge and narrow edge therefore user is able to create both a broader and narrower stroke.