This review has been long over due as it is one of the original 10 ink bottles that I own. I remember wanting it to use for my last semester of university, so it has been about 2 years since I picked up my bottle from Goulet Pens. If you go way back to my first review, you may recall that my Private Reserve Ebony Blue was my go to ink in school. I wanted to replace it with this since it is such a vibrant blue and waterproof!
Over that same semester break, my everyday pen got upgraded from a Lamy Safari to a Pilot Vanishing Point via a Christmas gift! In terms of getting new school supplies for a new semester, this takes the cake. I got myself super pumped up to use my new pen and ink in class, but…… it was a flop. I already touched on it slightly in my Vanishing Point review, but now let me tell you why from the ink’s perspective.
It’s not often that I start a review with the negatives, but I thought I would mix it up a little with this one. The flow of this ink has been very hit and miss with me. For example, it flows perfectly in the pen it is in right now (Cross Bailey, medium nib), but struggled in my Pilot Vanishing Point (refer to my story above). It wrote so dry that it would skip and give an inconsistent line. You can see how this would make me think the combo was a flop.
In this particular case, I am going to blame mostly the ink, not the pen, since Liberty’s Elysium is the only ink that I have ever had problems with in that pen. Was it just a dry writer? Did I get a dud? I don’t think so since every other ink that has gone through my Vanishing Point has flowed perfectly.
Since that poor experience with my VP, I will admit that I have used the ink sparingly and only in my cheap pens (I’ll discuss why later). All of these happened to be super wet writers, so fortunately I have not replicated those flow issues again…. yet.
Colour & Properties
The vibrancy of this blue is one of the main reasons that I (and so many others) fell for this ink. There is a very specific reason why this ink is this colour. It is because Brian & Rachel Goulet of the Goulet Pen Company collaborated with Noodler’s to make a Goulet exclusive. As most of you probably know, the Goulet’s sure like their blues and even have their idea of what “Goulet Blue” is, which is exactly what they achieved with this ink.
I am going completely based on memory, so please correct me if I am wrong, but I recall Brian mentioning in one of his videos that they were going for the same colour as the standard Noodler’s Blue, only with permanent features. I used a sample of Noodler’s Blue back in the day and I have to say that it is spot on and I could see why they would want to model this ink after it.
The feature of this ink that the Goulets wanted to add is what sets this ink apart from the standard Noodler’s Blue. That feature is it’s bulletproof properties. What this means is that it is waterproof and will have some resistance to other chemicals such as bleach (didn’t try this one out).
The reason why I wanted this bulletproof feature was because I was going to use it for all of my class notes that I didn’t want to lose if they got soaked. In theory, this ink sounds perfect for a student. For me though, it didn’t quite hit the spot since it didn’t cooperative with my VP, which is what I really wanted to use. I ended up switching back to Private Reserve Ebony Blue for the rest of my school career.
Back to another negative. While the poor flow in my VP was enough for me to put the bottle back on the shelf, it still writes decent enough in other pens, such as this Cross Bailey. That makes this ink good again since it was just an inconvenience to me in one pen… right? Wrong!
My main concern with this ink is the fact that it stains almost anything it touches. I don’t think it is as bad as the infamous Bay State Blue, but I haven’t used it to know for sure. All I know is that I usually have a hell of a time cleaning the nib, feed, and converters when I use it. I haven’t noticed any permanent staining yet (not going to try it in a demonstrator) but it sticks around for a few cleanings cycles. This is why I have only been using it in cheap Chinese pens since noticing my VP nib unit looking a little blue.
Noodler’s Liberty’s Elysium is a widely loved ink, so I might take some flack for being so negative in this review. Is it possible that I got a bad bottle? Maybe, but doubtful since I have read other reports of staining from other people as well.
With that being said, this ink is my Bay State Blue. What I mean by that is that people still use Bay State Blue based on colour, despite the fact that it will stain your pen. The colour for Liberty’s Elysium is the same for me. I know that it will stain my pen temporarily, but the blue is so great that I am willing to put it in my cheap pens, as long as it flows nicely.
If you are thinking about getting this ink, make sure you know what you want because it is more than just a pretty blue. Be prepared that it won’t work in every pen. Know that it will be difficult to clean your pen. Lastly, know that it is a gorgeous blue that won’t o anywhere on the page.
Check out these other reviews of Liberty’s Elysium: