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Review: Top 7 Journals and how they respond to watercolor!

This was a really fun experiment. Personally, I am an avid watercolourist (watercolorist for our american friends who spell colour wrong :P), anyway! Finding a journal that works well with heavy water or watercolor has been challenging! SO SO Challenging. So – I took a page of the top journals I have and thought ok – lets see how they really go!

I conducted the watercolor tests with the wettest mediums I could find, ones that would purposely bleed really badly. SO I used the following, Watercolor pencils, Ecoline liquid watercolor, Ecoline brushpens, Prima Confections Watercolor, and finally Jane Davenport Watercolor Brushpens. I checked for how they bled, how they ghosted and how they buckled the page. Also a critical item to look at was how they looked on the page.

I decided to test the Rhodia Goalbook, The Lemome, Scribbles that matter, Fabriano, Moleskine, Kikki K Grid Journal, and finally they Leuchtturm.

If you were wanting the items I used in the test – they were available here from Amazon:

So lets get straight into it!

Bullet Journal Watercolor1. The Rhodia Goal Book

I found the paper very yellow in this, but really loved how it handled the wet ink, there was limited to no bleeding or ghosting.

CharacteristicScore out of 5 (5 being amazing)
Page colourYellow – I found it too yellow
Page weight90gsm
GhostingBarely Any
Page BuckleMinimal


Bullet Journal Watercolor2. Fabriano Note Book

I really like this, but the dots are much smaller than in spacing than the 0.5cm we are all used to. I am amazed that at 85gsm the paper did so well. Id say this was in my top 3 favorites and I really liked how the colours looked on the page too

CharacteristicScore out of 5 (5 being amazing)
Page colourWhite, with very small dots
Page weight85gsm
GhostingSome Ghosting
Page BuckleMinimal

Bullet Journal Watercolor3. Scribbles that matter

This was my first journal that I really liked, and overall it fares well but it buckles significantly under the water.

CharacteristicScore out of 5 (5 being amazing)
Page colourCream
Page weight100gsm
Page BuckleQuite a bit

Bullet Journal Watercolor4. Leuchtturm

I actually really liked how the colour looked on the pages of the Leachtturm. It holds the colour well. The paper didnt love the water colour pencils and while it didnt buckle, the paper itself pilled somewhat.

CharacteristicScore out of 5 (5 being amazing)
Page colourIvory/ Off White
Page weight80gsm
GhostingQuite a bit
Page BuckleMinimal

Bullet Journal Watercolor5. Kikki.K Grid Journal

If you had read my previous review on this, it follows though here. Don’t love it. I wish I did. But I don’t.

CharacteristicScore out of 5 (5 being amazing)
Page colourWhite which is cool
Page weight80gsm (about)
Page BuckleA bit!

Bullet Journal Watercolor6. Lemome

I got the Lemomes last week and I am in-love. Bit was actually surprised at how this faired. It is the highest quality paper in the group at 125gsm. While less yellow than the Rhodia it still faired really well.

CharacteristicScore out of 5 (5 being amazing)
Page colourYellowish
Page weight125gsm (about)
Page BuckleMinimal

Bullet Journal Watercolor7. Moleskine

oooooof. This was horrific. The bleed was insane. It just came straight through the paper. Unhelpfully so. Like a sieve. Would have to say this was my least favorite! BUT It ahs redeeming qualities (while being on the expensive side) it didnt buckle to much under the paper.

CharacteristicScore out of 5 (5 being amazing)
Page colourIvory
Page weight70gsm (about)
BleedYes – A lot
GhostingWho could tell through the bleed?
Page BuckleMinimal


Other than the page colour I would say its a close tie between the Rhodia Goal Book and the Lemome. I am now looking even more forward to using them!

So in order of preference our winners are:

  1. Lemome
  2. Rhodia Goal Book (it would have totally won if it wasn’t so yellow!)
  3. Fabriano
  4. Scribbles that Matter
  5. Leuchtturm
  6. Kikki K
  7. Moleskine

If you want to have a look at them to buy – you can do so here:


Bullet Journal Watercolor

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