While lined options are great for structured note-taking, the best dot grid notebooks offer guidance without standing in the way of your creativity. They’re a favorite among designers and bullet journalers — but good ones are surprisingly hard to find. When shopping for a dot grid notebook, you’ll want to consider the binding, the thickness of the paper, and the number of sheets.
First, decide whether you want a spiral notebook or a hardbound. The former has pages that turn easily and can be opened a full 360 degrees and can be laid down flat, while the latter is often more durable during travel and storage. The right one for you typically comes down to how you plan to use it and aesthetic preference.
Next, consider the grams per square meter. The higher the number, the heavier (and thicker) the paper, which helps to improve durability. It also helps to reduce bleed-through, which is when you can see the ink from the other side of the paper. The weight of standard printer paper is about 80 gsm, usually considered the minimum required thickness to prevent bleed-through, but if you use thick ink or markers, consider something with a higher gsm.
Finally, choose an overall size that best suits your needs. Most best-selling notebooks are categorized as A5, which means the paper measures roughly 5 by 8 inches, but I’ve put the dimensions below all of these options for reference. Also keep in mind that some journals list the sheet count (tallying each individual piece of paper) while others list the page count (tallying the double-sided writing surfaces on each sheet).
According to the aforementioned criteria as well as reviewer feedback, these are five of the best dot grid notebooks on the market.
1. The Overall Best Dot Grid Notebook
Because it’s affordable, high-quality, and comes in so many colors and designs, this dotted grid notebook is one of the most highly reviewed on Amazon. (Currently, it has a near-perfect 4.8-star rating from almost 2,000 buyers.) On the outside, you’ll find a hardbound cover with round corners and an elastic closure. On the inside, it has off-white acid-free paper with subtle dots, an inner pocket, and a built-in bookmark.
- Paper thickness: 120 gsm
- Notebook size: 5 by 8.25 inches
- Number of sheets: 64
- Available colors: black, yellow, blue geode, cacti, pink geode, marble, mint, purple
One reviewer wrote: “This is an amazing book! [...] I use it for my business and keeping myself organized! The paper is very high quality and the hardcover keeps it from getting smooshed!”
2. The Cult-Favorite Spiral Dot Grid Notebook
It’s irregular in its size, but that's what reviewers love about it, with one going as far to call it their “forever favorite.” The Rhodia Reverse dot book has a square shape and spiral binding, so it can be used vertically or horizontally depending on your needs. (For that same reason, it’s a great pick for left-handed people.) The French-milled paper is 80 gsm, acid-free, and pH neutral. As a result, reviewers report that it works for fountain pens, brush lettering, calligraphy, and more. Finally, each of the 80 sheets is micro-perforated so you can tear them out with ease.
- Paper thickness: 80 gsm
- Notebook size: 8.25 by 8.25 inches
- Number of sheets: 80
- Available colors: black, orange
One reviewer wrote: “I’ve [gone] through quite a few of these notebooks over the past few years and keep coming back for more. I’ve tried many of those other similar typed notebooks throughout as well, and honestly nothing compares to the paper quality of a Rhodia.”
3. The Best Value Pack
For the same price as some individual dot-grid journals, these RETTACY spiral-bound notebooks come in a pack of three, each with 160 pages per book. Needless to say, if you work through notebooks frequently or you need a few different books for a few different projects, this is without a doubt the best value. Despite the affordability factor, the paper is thick, acid-free, and bleed-resistant, while the binding is sturdy and the hard plastic cover is protective.
- Paper thickness: 100 gsm
- Notebook size: 5.7 by 8.3 inches
- Number of sheets: 80 each
- Available colors: clear
One reviewer wrote: “I think these notebooks are a great value for the money. [...] It did really well with pencil, marker, and ink pen. I’d recommend it for anyone who takes a lot of notes or likes to doodle.”
4. The Best Extra-Thick Notebook
For those looking for an extra-thick notebook, this grid journal from Littful has 360 sheets, which translates to 720 pages. It also has a protective hardcover that’s wrapped in faux-leather and stamped with the word “Believe,” and two built-in bookmarks that are color-coded for convenience. The paper itself is thick and bleed-resistant. (Keep in mind that not all of the color options are dot grid notebooks; just the black and the red.)
- Paper thickness: 100 gsm
- Notebook size: 5.7 by 8.42 inches
- Number of sheets: 360
- Available colors: black, red
One reviewer wrote: “Very thick and well put together. I got the dotted journal and the ink does not bleed through the pages.”
5. The Most Eco-Friendly & Durable
Finally, the Lemome notebook is both environmentally friendly and extremely durable. Since the cover is made from real cork, it’s sustainable as well as protective. The pages are much thick and have micro-perforations, but they’re also acid-free so your writing lasts. Last but definitely not least, the spine is glued in and designed to lay at 180 degrees for flat, comfortable writing.
- Paper thickness: 120 gsm
- Notebook size: 5 by 8 inches
- Number of sheets: 96
- Available colors: natural cork
One reviewer wrote: “The quality of this book is AMAZING. I was pleasantly surprised with the high-quality durability of the cover of the book and the thickness of the pages. I use the sharpie pens in the book so I know they don’t bleed through the page but I would be confident to use other markers and pens as well.”