If you follow bullet journaling on any social media you are likely familiar with Zebra Mildliners. I admit my FOMO was so strong on these that when I saw a set at Target priced well above my budget I almost put everything in my cart back to spend $20 on a handful of not-highlighters.
I’ll be blunt, the Mildliner is a dual-tipped marker. It’s a really nice one, but at the end of the day, it is a marker. The ink is translucent enough that you can see any writing you are highlighting.
The core point of the Mildliner is that they aren’t highlighter bright. The colors are muted and mild on the page. The shades do pop off the page but function as almost any marker might. I picked up 3 Mildliners in the loose stock at Michael’s. At $1.99 each or more in a set these are pretty pricey little markers. Loose with a coupon at Michael’s brings these into an affordable price range.
In terms of performance, I find both tips suitably sturdy. I’ve only used mine for a few days but they haven’t crushed or deformed in my use. I don’t generally have a problem with mushing chisel tips but I do with bullet tips. But the bullet tips have stayed at a nice fine point. I have found that I quite enjoy the bullet tip for making a few notes or underlining notes in my pocket notebook. The size of these is nice too, it is close enough to a regular pen that it will fit into a regular pencil case, so you don’t need to find an extra long case, I’m looking at YOU Tombow Dual Tip Brush Markers!
I’m biased, but I picked up 3 colors I knew I would like and use, so I like the colors and they work well for how I use highlighters. Which is to say, that I use highlighters for minor emphasis in my notes- underlining some of my text or by circling notes. I also use them in my bullet journal to denote weekends and other important events. I need to figure out how I’m going to use mine in my “side-hustle bullet journal” (SHBJ) and what I’m going to denote with them.
In use, they smear with the same inks, pencils, and pens as any other highlighter. So expect that if you use waterbased inks or fountain pens that you’ll get smearing. IF you want to use pencil stick to HB or F grades for less smear, those 2b and Blackwings are going to get graphite all over the place.
Overall I think that the Mildliner performs wonderfully and the colors are great. They are just different enough that finding these shades in another brand of marker is going to be a pain in the rear. Frankly, any chisel tip or bullet tip marker will perform similarly, but finding a chisel tip marker that is in a compact package with these colors is going to be difficult. The closest you’ll get to these shades is the Tombow Dual Tip Brush Pen. But that has a brush tip which many will find hard to control, though is great for the same purposes as the Mildliner.
I like these, but I also guaranteed my like by purchasing only the 3 colors I knew I’d use in my bullet journal or in my lifelong learning quest. The best place to purchase these is at Jetpens. Their prices are the best online and their sets are at the best price I’ve seen. You can also get them at Michael’s from the singles display at the register. Which is the best price I’ve seen in person. I’ve seen the 15-color set at Target during BTS but not since.