If like me, you spend your working life bustling around an office, then you’ll be fairly reliant on the availability of pens. We have so many of them; squirrelled away in drawers, bags, the glove compartment of the car. We are globally infested with these disposable plastic pens and we don’t seem to remember how or when we acquired them! More importantly, we have no clue where they disappear to when we need them most. I just counted 3 in my bag, found 1 on the floor and 6 stashed between the pencils and highlighters in my pen pot. But when I’m chained to my desk by a phone cord, there is never one within arm’s reach.

That was until I converted to the one-pen-approach and changed my mindset, disarming my stationery sabotage demon forever. The change happened when I first walked into the Noted in Style office. It simply doesn’t fly when you attempt to sneak a substandard plastic eye-sore into this office, and I hadn’t even stopped to consider I might be having a positive impact on the environment as well – making my new writing habits twice as beneficial! As our name suggests, we do everything with style here and our writing tools are no exception.

Why low-cost pens are a false economy.

As I mentioned above, you can never find a pen when you need one. We lose them, constantly. A recent study showed that, along with staplers, they are items that are most likely to go ‘walkabout’ in an office. When they run out we just throw them away because they’re not refillable and in most cases,  they’re nothing to write home about aesthetically. It’s rare for us to want to claim ownership of such a universally unremarkable-looking tool and as a result, we don’t tend to look after them. Regular ‘redistribution’ of them in the office becomes an inevitability. And by that, I mean other people take them (but you’d never catch the culprit because the pens are all so underwhelmingly similar). An unrelenting supply is required and this takes its toll on the company stationery budget. Yes, these desk-hopping, low-cost plastic pens are certainly a menace. It seems logical to arm staff with some high quality pens instead.


The refillable metal Lamy Studio ballpoint pen is a high quality alternative that owners are more likely to take care of.

Less waste, more taste – high quality pens are a better company investment.

Investing in high quality pens for your company will make users think twice about where they last put them. It will possibly even encourage them to keep their pens on their person at all times (plus, it’s a great way to keep your brand under clients’ noses). A beautiful, well-made pen is definitely something to treasure. People are likely to take better care of high quality pens, prolonging their already superior lifespans. You’ll probably even discover that pen owners clear a special place on their desk – a pen pedestal – for their valued writing implement. And if someone does borrow your pen (if you let them) then they’d better return it promptly! Whether your aim is less unnecessary pen consumption by staff, or persuading clients to hang on to their branded pens for longer, you’ll increase ROI for your business.

Cost-effective pens come at the cost of a healthy planet.

So disposable and un-special are low-cost biros, that we simply don’t give it a second thought before tossing one in the bin, following its final angry, inkless scribble. But have you ever thought about where all these throwaway plastic pens end up?


Disposable low-cost plastic pens do not decompose and end up on landfill sites like this one.

With the health of our planet a constant feature in the news in recent years, we’re becoming more proactive on the subject in the coroporate world. Businesses are seeing an increase environmental Corporate Social Responsibility legislation that urges them to seek ways to lower their carbon footprint by making small changes like switching to sustainable office supplies. Unfortunately, most plastic disposable pens are not biodegradable, once they’ve fulfilled their purpose they serve only to clog the environment in landfills and waterways. Furthermore, if incinerated they release toxic gases into the environment. A recent report wrote that “it is estimated there will be more plastic than fish by 2050”. That’s a scary thought that makes you want to reduce the amount of plastic waste you contribute.

High quality pens are an ethical investment.

Well, there is a way you can help. We can reduce the amount of harmful plastic that ends up in landfills by opting for high quality pens that will last a lot longer. You may be thinking that switching from biro to fountain pen won’t make much of a difference. But consider that we throw away approximately 1.6 billion plastic disposable pens a year. If we can help reduce this number by a small percent in the next year, then we can call it a success.

A refillable fountain pen or rollerball pen made from metal or other hard-wearing, premium finished materials is a logical alternative to the throwaway pen. Although not recyclable itself, its longer lifespan will keep it in use for years. You may even never throw it away and keep a collection of attractive pens,  saving it from a landfill destiny. And if you opt for a fountain pen that you can refill from bottled ink then even better, as the glass bottle CAN be recycled.

Lamy Lx Fountain high quality pens

High quality Lamy Lx fountain pens (above) will last a lot longer than a disposable biro.

If you’re interested in reducing your company’s material waste, becoming more eco-friendly and taking your green responsibilities seriously, you could consider this as a first step by getting in touch to speak to one of our branded pen experts. Provide your staff or clients with well-made high quality pens that are made even more meaningful with the addition of printed or engraved branding – not only is this a great marketing exercise, but you’re also contributing to a note-worthy environment-conscious change.

rentalcars metal high quality pens

These longer-lasting branded metal Venice pens are a great way to boost staff appreciation and brand awareness.

And even if recipients don’t fully take home the ethical message just yet, the very least it will do is boost staff appreciation and make them feel valued. You’ve got nothing to lose!