How to Unclog a Gel Pen

Things You'll Need

  • Gel pens
  • Scratch paper
  • 600-grit sandpaper
  • Paper towel

Many people enjoy the smooth and colorful writing produced when you use a gel pen. Unfortunately, writing can be a frustrating ordeal if your gel pens will not work because they have gel ink clogging the tip and preventing the gel pen from writing. When this occurs, try several different techniques to unclog your gel pen. Once you know how to maintain your gel pens and keep them working smoothly, you will be back to writing in no time.

Use the gel pen to make circles on the scratch paper. Often the circular motion causes the tip of the gel pen to roll and when this happens, fresh gel ink will flow into the chamber of the tip. Continue drawing circles on your scratch paper to make this happen, pressing firmly to make the fresh ink flow.

Draw a fine, long line onto the sandpaper. Often the grit of the sandpaper is enough to make the gel pens release ink. If the sandpaper does not work, try drawing a fine, long line onto a paper towel. This creates the same effect where the gel pen may release ink into the chamber.

Make a line on your skin. Often the oils in one’s skin will be instrumental in unclogging gel pens.


  • Prevent gel pens from clogging by always storing them in a horizontal position with the lids tightly covered. If you do not cover them, air will dry out the gel ink in the chamber of the gel pen.


About the Author

Kathryn Hatter is a veteran home-school educator, as well as an accomplished gardener, quilter, crocheter, cook, decorator and digital graphics creator. As a regular contributor to Natural News, many of Hatter's Internet publications focus on natural health and parenting. Hatter has also had publication on home improvement websites such as Redbeacon.