One of the hardest decision that a bullet journaler has to make is deciding which journal to choose. I have scoured bullet journal groups, blog posts, and amazon reviews galore to find the best bullet journal notebooks. I came up with 4.
The bullet journal becomes such a personal and closely held object to the person utilizing it. It will be shoved into purses, briefcases, brought on trips, opened, closed, flipped through, go through water coloring and pen after pen. The bullet journal takes a lot of abuse in it’s life.
Finding one that can stand up to the day to day abuse over the course of 3-6 months can be a difficult task. Lucky for you I’ve found the bullet journals that last.
The Bullet Journal Notebook Matters
It does matter which bullet journal you get and not all bullet journals are created equally. Every person has their favorite and you will have to decide which one you are partial to as well.
There are lots of options but the four that I have chosen have the best reviews and most purchases when it comes to bullet journals. You can also consider using a travelers notebook.
A travelers journal will work wonderfully for those who want to keep different sections of their bullet journal separate. For instance you can keep collections, planner, journals, and trackers all in separate books within the same cover. When a book is filled simply replace the notebook with a new one in the same cover.
While I like the appeal of this I actually really enjoy switching up the design of the collections with each notebook. For the purpose of this blog and to satisfy my inner artist I can share the new ideas and tutorials with you.
What To Look For In a Bullet Journal Notebook
When you are looking at a bullet journal there are a few things that are extremely important. These things can make or break a bullet journal.Binding
Binding is one of the most important parts of a great journal. If the binding doesn’t hold and you start losing papers you are going to be extremely disappointed and possibly downright mad. The last thing any journaler wants to do is lose spreads they have spent time creating and then spend more time recreating them.Paper
Dot grid paper that is acid free with high gsm value. GSM stands for “grams per square meter” the higher the gsm, the heavier the weight of the paper. Higher quality paper reduces bleeding and ghosting when writing or drawing.Cover
You are going to be looking at the cover of this bullet journal for a couple of months, you want it to be appealing to you. Additionally the cover should open completely and allow for the bullet journal to lay flat. This makes it easier to design and plan in.Extras
Most bullet journals will come with at least one ribbon for marking your spot. Some will come with two. You will want your bullet journal to have an elastic band to help keep it closed. One of the most satisfying parts of the bullet journal is watching your journal grow and expand as you add your spreads and collections.
Why You Want A Decent Notebook
The quality of your bullet journal should be high because of everything you will be doing with it. If you are using watercolors, brush pens, or certain sharpies you will need a higher quality bullet journal to last through the work you put into it.
More than just the type of mediums you will be working with, you will be in this journal every single day sometimes multiple times a day. It’s this daily use that will determine just how strong your bullet journal really is.
If you don’t get a quality journal you could have broken binding issues, massive warping, bleeding, and ghosting issues. These issues could put you days without a journal while you replace it with a better one.
Word of warning though. Any journal will have bleeding or ghosting issues if you have a heavy hand. It may take a bit of time to learn the light touch needed for avoiding bleeding and ghosting.
Before we get started here is a list of my other recommended supplies.Recommended Products
Best Bullet Journal Notebooks
Now that you know what you need to look for let’s take a look at the 4 best bullet journal notebooks.
This bullet journal is the one I currently use. It has worked extremely well for me over the course of several months. This is the bullet journal I recommend for all new bullet journalers or those on a budget. It’s a great starter journal with a middle of the road cost.
The paper is 100 gsm with 192 pages. There are no page numbers on this journal so you will be doing that yourself. I just do it as I go along. There is only one ribbon and it has the elastic band to keep the journal closed. Another great feature is the pocket that easily fits stencils for safe keeping.
This is one of the most popular bullet journal notebooks probably because of the amount of pages you get with one of these. A total of 249 pages however those pages are only 70 gsm. This isn’t bad but there are better weights out there.
This journal comes with a pocket, page marker, blank table of contents, and elastic band. There are loads of people who are huge fans of the Leuchtturm1917 and that paper count is a huge selling point.
Scribbles That Matter is a pretty awesome company and gaining traction in the bullet journal world. Their journals have 185 numbered pages, a pen holder, 2 ribbons, elastic band, are 100% vegan, and have 100 gsm paper.
There is a built in pen test page so you can see how your pens look on the ivory paper. These journals come in all different colors and have a 100% money back guarantee. This company also makes pens and other bullet journal supplies that are vegan too.
This is another extremely popular bullet journal and for good reason. It has 192 pages of 120 gsm paper. There is a pen holder, ribbon, elastic closure, and inner pocket. This bullet journal is high quality for a great price.
I was a bit concerned about some of the 1 star reviews complaining about the binding however there were responses from Lemome offering explanations of a better glue, replace, or refund. Additionally, all the recent reviews from 2018 were all 5 star reviews.
Best Journals for Bullet Journaling
These 4 journals are the top choices from experienced and long term bullet journalers. Everyone has their favorite and they usually stick with them. For me I plan on switching it up and trying the Lemome next. I’ll be sure to update this post with my experiences as I go along.
Remember, the key to a great journal is heavy paper weight, lay flat design, and great binding. If you find a journal that has these three things chances are high it’s a great journal to use. Test out the journals and figure out which one is your favorite.Recommended Products
Which journal are you excited about trying? Let me know in the comments below. Do you have bullet journal spreads you would like shared? Email them to [email protected] and they may be featured on an Instagram post and/or to the blog. Please leave your IG Username so I can tag you in the posts. Follow me on Pinterest for more like this and pin this to your Bullet Journal boards.