Used in schools and offices across the world, highlighter pens have become one of the most popular pieces of stationery since their accidental invention in the early 1960s. Typically, they are used to highlight pieces of text so that the reader can immediately see which are the critical pieces of information to look at. For students, this allows them to study at their own pace, breaking down large chunks into smaller parts. In an office environment, they are used similarly, such as highlighting essential passages in presentation materials, a quick way to mark information to be revisited, and even highlighter pens that can be used to mark important items for security purposes. Whatever you want to use them for, browse our collection of highlighter stationery to find the ones that best suit your needs.
Highlighters work by absorbing light at short wavelengths and emitting it according to their specific colour. The fluorescent element in highlighter pens is known as fluorescein. A water-soluble and non-toxic substance, this is responsible for the neon quality offered by this form of stationery. However, other ingredients are needed to ensure that the correct colours are produced, and it's these that can affect the brightness of certain pigments.
Along with fluorescein, a yellow highlighter will usually contain pyranine. Also non-toxic and water-soluble, pyranine absorbs blue and ultraviolet light, which is then re-emitted as yellow, with a green tinge to it. Because daylight is made up of blue light, this makes the yellow shade one of the brightest you can buy, making it perfect when you need something to really stand out.
Blue highlighters use triphenylmethane to create the brilliant blue colouring that makes them so eye-catching. Triphenylmethane reacts with UV light to create its fluorescent effect. Because daylight only contains around 3% UV light, blue highlighter pens tend to appear less bright than other colours. However, when used with UV or black light, they glow incredibly brightly, making them a superb choice for creating vibrant signs and artistic pieces under these specific lighting conditions.
Although the red highlighter pen is a rarity due to its depth of colour, they do exist. A red highlighters uses rhodamine B to absorb green light and re-emit it as red. However, this colour can be challenging to read text through, so it is rarely used as a marker for notes and presentations. Instead, red pens tend to be used more by those looking to create vivid notices and mark-up comments.
Rhodamine B is also used in the creation of pink highlighters. Mixed with triphenylmethane, it produces the bright pink, making the pink highlighter one of the most widely used. This combination is also used to create purple shades.
When it comes to the orange highlighter, the pigment is created using a solution of xanthene and coumarin. Together, these absorb colours in the blue spectrum, re-emitting them as a neon orange. Along with yellow, blue and pink pens, orange pens are among the most popular colours used in educational and office environments.
If you’re buying highlighters specifically for use on text, such as in the classroom or the boardroom, the best ones to use are those with chisel tips. Chisel-tipped pens allow you to draw both thick and medium-thick lines, ensuring that you only need to draw over the appropriate sentences once to achieve the best coverage. In addition, chisel-tipped pens are ideal for those who want to use fluorescent colours for more artistic purposes. Using the thicker edge of a chisel-tipped pen allows you to fill in larger areas with bright colours quickly and more efficiently.
However, these pens have a wide range of uses beyond the office. Browse our collection of stationery, and you'll find items such as highlighter rollers. These offer that artistic edge to standard highlighting, using a mini roller to dispense the ink, with a distinctive pattern embossed on the outer edges of the roller itself. These can be especially useful for purposes such as revision and journalling. In addition, our range contains rollers with inks that won't dry out, even if the cap is accidentally left off.
While we sell highlighter pens individually, we also sell them in multi-packs, starting at packets holding ten pens and going up to 48. Available in various colours, you can ensure that your supplies are always stocked up, and you're ready to highlight whatever comes your way.
As Europe's leading supplier of office essentials and accessories, we treat every order with all the attention it deserves, regardless of its size. Whether buying in bulk for your business or making a one-off purchase for yourself, you'll quickly discover why Avansas has become synonymous with the best products offered at the best prices.
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