Goulet Pens recently did a very helpful video showcasing the different tiers of paper quality and their performance with fountain pen inks. They used three different inks to show their performance on each type of paper. One of the inks they used was Herbin Emerald de Chivor because it has a lot of shimmer and sheen, which does not show up well on more absorbent papers.
Tier 1 papers are more absorbent than the others. This means a shorter drying time with inks, but it also means that inks tend to feather and bleed through the more absorbent paper. In the video they showed Leuchtturm paper as Tier 1, which showed feathering of the ink and caused it to look flat with the sheen not visible.
Tier 2 papers are resistant to feathering and bleed-through, and have excellent opaqueness for no show-through to the other side of the page. In Tier 2 they featured Clairefontaine and Rhodia paper, which showed the sheen of the inks very well without feathering or bleed through.
Tier 3 papers are very smooth and not absorbent, and tend to be much thinner than other papers. In Tier 3 they featured Tomoe River paper. They acknowledged that the shimmer and sheen are most visible on this type of paper, but the paper tends to buckle and warp with wet inks. Also, even though there is no bleed through, these thinner papers can have quite a lot of show through of inks to the other side of the page. Many people who use thin paper prefer to write on only one side of the page.
As with everything in life, your mileage may vary with different types of paper. Do you like to write and go? You might prefer a more absorbent paper for a shorter drying time. Do you like thicker, smooth paper that allows you to see the shimmer of your inks and still write on both sides of the page? You will like notebooks with Clairefontaine and Rhodia paper. Do you want to see maximum shimmer and don’t mind seeing your writing through to the back side of the page? Check out Tomoe River paper.
Goulet Pens sells a notebook sampler pack so you can try different types of paper to see what you prefer and what works best with your particular inks. You can buy the notebook sampler pack here.
See the entire Paper Quality Tiers video by Goulet Pens here: