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Pens run out of ink, and pencil tips get dull. What’s a hard worker to do if it happens at crunch time? If you have an electric sharpener at hand, problem solved. The days when you had to rotate a handle for an interminable time to get your pencil sharp again are long gone. These days, the best sharpeners are electric and most are tidy enough that you can keep one unobtrusively nearby. You won’t even have to leave your desk to use it.
Take a look below to find the best electric pencil sharpeners to purchase now.
Best Overall: BOOCOSA Pencil Sharpener
The BOOCOSA sharpener features a heavy-duty steel blade that will make the tip as pointy as a tack. This sharpener has you covered if you’re one of those who always wonders, “Is it done yet?” When you insert your pencil, the BOOCOSA sharpener will automatically turn on, and it will automatically turn itself off, too, when the job is complete.
Not only will the lead emerge sharp, but the mechanism is designed to achieve even trimming, so the point will still be perfectly round. The BOOCOSA is small enough to fit neatly on your desk, but the bin can hold up to 100 pencil shavings, and it’s durable, too, just like the blade.
Best for Workplaces: OfficeGoods Electric Pencil Sharpener
The OfficeGoods pencil sharpener is a good fit for classrooms or workplaces where a lot of people are going to be using it. Everyone has their own preferences when it comes to pencils, and this electric sharpener can pretty much accommodate anyone. It comes with three settings: sharp, medium, or blunt. It also has three options for power supply: a USB adapter, an AC adapter, or you can use four AA batteries. It will fully sharpen a brand new pencil in about 15 seconds.
The safety feature is pretty nice, too, if little fingers will be using it in a classroom. When the shavings cover is removed to expose the blade, the sharpener automatically stops, preventing injuries and other mishaps. It’s small enough that kids can pass it around for use when it’s on battery power, or you can tuck it neatly away, pretty much out of sight, on your desk. OfficeGoods is reported to have great customer service, too.
Best for Students: School Smart Vertical Pencil Sharpener
The School Smart Vertical sharpener is a good choice if you’re buying specifically for the classroom. Not only is it of heavy-duty construction, but it also works well with colored pencils, and it comes with its own pencils—12 of them.
It also has an auto-stop feature—it will turn itself off when the pencil is sharp—and it’s easier for younger kids to use because the pencil is inserted at the top. The hole isn’t as difficult to spot or manage as those that are tucked on the side of a device. And the bottom is rubberized, so the Smart School Vertical will stay where you put it, even under heavy use. Users have mentioned that this sharpener is a little on the noisy side, but kids shouldn’t mind that.
Related: The Best Mechanical Pencils
Best for Teachers: X-Acto School Pro Pencil Sharpener
Not all teachers want their students waiting to sharpen their own pencils, forming a line long enough to snake around the room. If you’d rather just take care of this job yourself—or if you otherwise use a lot of pencils in your work and want to bring a bunch of them to a point all at once—try X-Acto’s School Pro Classroom electric sharpener. It’s designed specifically for the classroom, but no one says you have to have a room full of students to appreciate the six pencil holes, all different sizes.
Small, suctioned feet keep the X-Acto School Pro Classroom upright and in place while it works away, and the auto-reset feature prevents it from overheating under heavy use. The blade is said to last 33 times longer than those in other sharpeners, and the electric motor is even reasonably quiet. If you use the X-Acto in the office, you won’t have your co-workers rolling their eyes wishing you’d get done with it already.
Related: The Best Pencil Cases
Best Shaving Reservoir: LINKYO Electric Pencil Sharpener
LINKYO makes an electric sharpener with a large, transparent reservoir, so you’ll know when it’s near to full and can empty it before you get started. But that won’t happen for a while because this is another one that can hold shavings from up to 100 pencils. And LINKYO’s Smart Sensor sharpener offers an auto-jam feature, too. Your pencil won’t be stuck in there until you find time to wrestle it out if something goes wrong. It features a smart shutoff, so it stops when your pencil is sharp enough. Just give the pencil a little push and it will pop right out.
The LINKYO sharpener is particularly speedy, too, sharpening a used pencil nicely in about three seconds and a new one in about seven seconds. It should sharpen about 3,000 pencils before you have to think about replacing it, but the price is comfortable so that shouldn’t be a problem.
Related: The Best Journaling Pens
Best Design: Bostitch Quiet Sharp 6 Electric Pencil Sharpener
Maybe your desk is in the reception area or you otherwise have a lot of visitors to your workspace. You don’t want a big, ugly, hulking dragon of a pencil sharpener squatting on your desk. Bostitch’s Quiet Sharp 6 is attractive as far as pencil sharpeners go, even though it’s heavy-duty and weighs about four pounds.
It stops automatically when the shavings bin is removed to cut down on the possibility of unsightly, aggravating spills across your desktop. The Quiet Sharp 6 comes with a suction base to keep it from tipping over, even if you accidentally knock it. It also accommodates six different pencil sizes, and it stops automatically to prevent over-sharpening. It’s a little on the expensive side, but it comes with a lifetime warranty, and Bostitch says the Quiet Sharp 6 will last 10 times longer than other sharpeners, thanks to its tip-saver technology.
If you're looking for a pencil sharpener for your office, try the OfficeGoods Electric Pencil Sharpener (view at Amazon). It comes with three different settings to accommodate a variety of sharpening preferences, has three options for power supply, and is equipped with safety features to keep everyone safe. Looking for a slim, stylish option? Try the Bostitch Quiet Sharp 6 Electric Pencil Sharpener (view at Walmart).
Meet the Expert
Beverly Bird has over three decades worth of writing and editing experience, including eight years of financial reporting. Her work has appeared in GOBankingRates, PocketSense, Zack's, Autoblog, LegalZoom, and more.