When it comes to choosing a fountain pen ink, it’s natural to look to the label that’s on the box or the bottle as an indicator for what’s inside. But wait! You can’t always trust those labels, at least not completely. From my experience of seeing hundreds of bottles of ink with labels on the outside, I can definitely say the colors used for labels are representative at best, and can rarely portray the true color of the ink inside.

Ink box colors vary even within themselves, apart from the ink.


The colors on the labels on boxes and bottles are representative, not exact.

Why aren’t the labels reliable? A few reasons, but mainly it’s that trying to maintain true color accuracy for the ink boxes and labels is time consuming and expensive. It’s assumed across the industry that the colors are representative, and not intended to be exact to the ink inside. Most experienced ink buyers know this, but it can be disappointing when buying your first bottle of ink if you don’t realize this. But now you know, so it won’t happen to you ;)

See the other Fountain Pen 101 videos here.

Write On,
Brian Goulet