How To Start Your Bullet Journal With 5 Simple Products


I’ve been journaling for a while now, and looking back to when I first started, I went through a whole bunch of supplies through trial and error, often finding terrible products that I tossed pretty quickly. I wish I had found a comprehensive list of great products right when I started to help narrow down that process a little bit more. No one wants to waste money on supplies they end up leaving at the bottom of a drawer or tossing all together! That’s where I come in, Below I’ve listed some of my favorite and most essential supplies that I’ve found through years of trial and error in bullet journaling! I hope this list on how to start your bullet journal with 5 simple products can help any beginners out there (or maybe revamp an old love for journaling and help you find some new materials)! 

1: A Great Journal!

If you’re going to start journaling, you need a reliable and easy to organize journal. High quality journals tend to be favorites, especially for daily journals and travelers. It’s always a good idea to invest in a durable journal that won’t fall apart from wear and tear! A classic spiral journal has never cut it for me, so here’s some of my favorite journals for beginners!

My personal favorites are:

Vivid Scribbles Dotted journal

The Leuchttrurm 1917 Dotted Notebook

The Keegood Dotted Journal

The Scribbles Journal:

Has no ghosting, which is a big plus for space efficiency and something I tend to look for in my journals. It’s also smudge-proof and has a built in pen testing page that I absolutely love! The faux leather exterior and strong binding works very well for my daily journal, since it feels nice and has held up better than a lot of journals I’ve tried. It also features three (yes I said three!) bookmarks and a pen loop making it super easy if you separate your journal into sections like I do!

The Leuchttrum Notebook:

Has eight perforated pages, a blank table of contents and more helpful features that I haven’t found in other notebooks, but it ghosts a bit more than the other journals I’ve listed here. The lay-flat quality of binding is great for embellishing drawings and writing at all angles! I really enjoyed the pre-build table of contents and other helpful pre-built pages, and this would be a good choice for someone feeling a bit overwhelmed when first starting a daily journal setup.

The Keegood Journal:

Is in my opinion, the nicest looking journal, and is great for people who spend time decorating the pages of their journal since it comes with a small ruler and colored tabs. This one also has a lay-flat design which I really enjoyed when making boxed in journal days. The shredded cork/wood design on the cover is really stylish and makes the outside of the journal really exciting while still providing a sleek and beautiful inside composition.

All three journals are great options, but when picking the right one for you it all comes down to personal preference! Take a look at all three and see which you lean towards before picking the one that’s perfect for you.

2: A reliable and comfortable pen set!

It seems like a given, but your journaling experience will immediately be so much better with a reliable pen! I have a whole slew of pens I use, but I’ll provide my favorite options for drawing and writing. (It’s so hard to only choose a few!)

Staedtler Pigment Liner Fineliner Pens with Assorted Line Width

Sakura Pigma 30062 Micron Blister Card Ink Pen Set

Pentel Arts Pocket Brush Pen

Tombow 56621 Dual Brush Pen

I like to have a few different liners from 005 up to 08, as well as a brush pen and chisel pen for larger area embellishments and designs.

My favorites are definitely the Staedtler Pigment Liners, I really like the line quality they give to writing and drawing, and they’re waterproof (for watercolor embellishment and messy people like me!). They take days to dry up if you forget the cap, and the pack they come in stands up nicely so they’re all right there at your disposal for stress-free journaling.

I also like the liners from Micron, but I’ve found that the tips are less durable than others I’ve used. The line quality and waterproof is great, and the archival ink is great for small drawings and embellishments on your pages.

My Absolute Favorite

Brush pen I have ever used is the Pentel Pocket brush pen. It comes with two refills and is a bit more expensive than other options, but it’s so worth it. The line quality is incredible for calligraphy, fine lining, and everything else you’d want in a brush pen. I’ve used it for bullet journaling and fine art for years and It’s always my go-to. They last forever and are so comfortable in your hand. This is a purchase you won’t regret.

The Tombow brush pen is another great option, and is double sided. This is a great option for a cheaper brush pen!

Again, your personal preference should drive your pen choice, and you may need to try a few before you find the one that’s right for you! Plus, it’s never bad to have options, and I tend to switch up my liners from time to time anyways.

3: A set of colored markers or highlighters!

It’s always a good idea to have colors handy when journaling. They not only help separate days and weeks, but they make your journal instantly more appealing to the eye. (Plus cute drawings are fun to look back on and a good stress reliever.)

Keebor Advanced 80+1 Colors Dual Tip Alcohol Art Markers

Zebra Pen Mildliner, Double Ended Highlighter, Broad and Fine Tips, Assorted Ink Colors

JARLINK 48 Colors Journal Planner Pens

My favorite pack is the Keebor Blender Markers, and it’s a set I always have handy. I recently upgraded to these and I’m so happy I did! It’s a bit of a bigger set than I had before but I’ve gotten really good use out of all the colors and loved the amount of options I got. They are alcohol based blender markers so they work super well for embellishment drawings and fading from one color to the next for multicolored borders.

Another favorite is the Zebra double sided highlighters. This set is a favorite of mine because the pastel colors make for really appealing journaling spreads and look beautiful with black liners. This is a set I got early on and have stuck with for years because of their pigmentation, durability, and overall ease of use.

The Jarlink colored pens are another great choice. I don’t personally use them as much as the others for the sole fact that they are fineliners, but they’re an incredible choice for anyone looking to make colored lists or boxes. This one is personal preference because I like to only use black lines, but I’ve used this set in the past and loved them because of their vibrancy and smooth writing! Definitely a good fine-liner choice.

4: A Good Ruler!

A ruler is always a handy thing to have when journaling. It instantly makes everything look a lot cleaner and more organised!

Westcott 8ths 6-Inch Beveled Transparent Ruler

MeetUs 8 Pcs Compass/Math Set

Sketchmark: The Bookmark Stencil for Bullet Journaling

The first choice is a simple 6 inch clear ruler from Wescott. I always chose a clear ruler for ease of use and lining elements up and this i=one is a small and handy tool you can stick right in your journal!

Next is the MeetUs math ruler set. I know, I know, don’t worry, I won’t make you do any math on this one, but this set has been really great for me. It comes in its own case and has a bunch of little tools that I find really useful when journaling.

Lastly, and my favorite here, is the Stretchmark bookmark ruler. This is a credit-card sized ruler made from stainless steel. It not only has useful markings, but can be used as a metric ruler, imperial ruler, metric compass, imperial compass, protractor, pie chart guide, stencil, isometric guide, straightedge, T-Square,and more. This is essential in my personal journaling!

5: Paper adhesive, whiteout, and washi tape!

These ones are definitely optional, but I’ve used them so much in my own journaling that I needed to put them here!

BIC Clean Wite-Out Brand EZ Correct Correction Tape

Tombow MONO Permanent Adhesive Applicator

Washi Tape Set, 16 Rolls of 15 mm Wide Decorative Colored Tape

This one’s simple. BIC’s dry white out applicator quickly fixes any mistakes, and you don’t have to wait for it to dry! For me, this is a super essential item. I use it almost daily! But hey, you may be neater than I am and want to skip it for now.

The Tombow roll on paper adhesive is perfect for adding small paper. Also, for photo embellishments for decorating, print outs, and more and It’s become an essential in my kit!

Washi tape is super fun for quick embellishments on your page, and I’ll link my absolute favorite set that has a clean and modern feel while still being cute and fun! I urge you to find more patterns and colors to make your journals super customized!

Well, that’s about it from me! I’d love to hear your favorites for journaling. Also, if you found any new items on my list that you’re excited to try out!

This has been, How To Start Your Bullet Journal With 5 Simple Products!

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