All About Gelly Rolls!

Sakura Gelly Rolls: Description, Examples & Identification.

Gelly Rolls are perfectly engineered. The ink flow is magical. The colors are luscious. The pens last a long time and they are inexpensive. The truth is that I have loved Gelly Rolls since I first tried them in about 2008. They write smoothly, effortlessly and consistently.  The ink is permanent and waterproof after a few minutes.

I've put together a little overview for you plus a palette with a little color swatch and color code number from the pen. The examples are drawn on plain white copy paper. The black line next to the first color of each pen shows what the color looks like over a black line made with PITT pen.

Stardust & Glaze


Sakura Gelly Roll Stardust Pen. Draws a .5mm line.  The line is translucent + sparkly on white paper. Comes in 12 colors plus clear.

Identification: Stardust pens have a shooting star on the transparent lid and on the body of the pen. There's a dot of the ink color in the inside of the lid. The bodies are transparent so you can see the color of the ink and how much is left.



Sakura Glaze. The color is translucent, bright and cheerful. The pens draw a .7mm line and draw raised, shiny translucent {almost transparent} ink. Per the Sakura site, these are Glaze and are not Gelly Rolls. The ink stays wet the longest of all of the pens in this review and the ink looks a little puddly if you hold in the same spot and just move a little bit. The tip is precise and these are great for coloring in detailed doodles - you can see through to the original doodle and get the ink in tight spaces. The ink dries in about a minute.

Identification:  Glaze pens have translucent lids and "Glaze" on the body of the pen. I've only seen them sold in sets of 10.

This mandala was colored with Glaze pens.

This accordian book was drawn mostly in Glaze pens.

Classic {Fine and Medium}


Mandala in black fine point.

the quote is written in black fine point doodled with moonlight pens

Sakura Gelly Roll Fine. Draws a .3mm line (from a .6mm roller ball tip) and writes in a thin opaque line. Ink is semi-opaque over black pitt pen. The ink takes a few seconds to dry.

Identification:  Fine tip pens have "FINE" on the body of the pen and opaque lids. They come in 6 colors including black. 


Sakura Gelly Roll Medium. Draws a 4mm line (.8 roller ball nib). Ink is semi-opaque over black pitt pen.

Identification:  They have "MED" on the body of the pen and most have sparkly translucent lids. They come in 11 colors including black.

The white writing in the center is medium point white Gelly Roll on black paper. 

Quote in white medium point Gelly Roll on a background of acrylic paint.

Metallic + Moonlight


Sakura Gelly Roll Metallic. Draws a .4mm line. Thin and shiny line, colors more muted than other Gelly Rolls. The ink is semi-opaque. They look gorgeous on black or white paper.

Identification: Metallic pens say "Metallic" on the body of the pen and lids are sparkly translucent. They come in 10 colors and you can buy them in sets or individually.


Sakura Gelly Roll Moonlight. Draws a .5mm line and writes in "luminous gel ink that glows under black light" {per Blick}, opaque on black or white paper. The ink is opaque over black pitt pen.

Identification: Each pen has a moon imprint on the lid and the body of the pen. These pens come in 10 colors, half are fluorescent.


Sakura Gelly Rolls on black paper. What works best? Metallic, Medium, Moonlight, some of the Stardust. What doesn't show up? Glaze {they are transparent}, Fine, some of the Stardust.

Journaling in fine tip, medium tip and moonlight Gelly Rolls on an acrylic background.