What is a guitar pick? Guitar picks are those little devices you use to strike your guitar strings. They are important. As a beginner, you must know about guitar picks when you want to learn how to play the guitar. That’s why I’m going to tell you in this “Guitar Picks For Beginners: The Ultimate Guide To Guitar Picks” blog post about everything related to guitar picks.
If you’re a newbie seeking to learn how to play acoustic or electric guitar, you’ll have to get used to different kinds of picks. In this guide, I’ll discuss different types of guitar picks and their purpose and functionality. So, why wait? Let’s get started on our journey with the guitar picks.
What is a guitar pick?
A guitar pick is also a plectrum that guitarists use to play the guitar. Typically, this little tool is made of plastic, nylon, rubber, felt, wood or glass. It is specially used to strum the chords or play specific notes while playing guitars. Players usually use different types of picks depending on their preferences.
Types of guitar pick according to thickness:
According to thickness, guitar picks are typically classified into five types, and they are:
- Extra light guitar picks
- Light/Thin guitar picks
- Medium guitar picks
- Heavy guitar picks
- Extra heavy guitar picks
Extra light guitar picks:
Extra light or thin guitar picks are the slimmest, ranging from 0.38–0.44 mm thick.
Light/Thin guitar picks:
Light picks are slightly thicker and generally range from 0.45–0.69 mm.
Medium guitar picks:
Medium picks range from 0.70–0.84 mm.
Heavy guitar picks:
Heavy guitar picks measure 0.85–1.49 mm.
Extra heavy guitar picks:
Extra heavy guitar picks are generally more than 1.49 mm in thickness. The picks equal to 1.50 mm or more significant than this value are considered heavy guitar picks.
Classification of guitar picks according to materials:
There are also some types of guitar picks according to the materials used for manufacturing the guitar picks. They are classified as:
- Plastic-made guitar picks
- Wood-made guitar picks
- Horn, bone, and leather-made guitar picks
- Glass-made guitar picks
- Metal-made guitar picks
Plastic-made guitar picks:
Plastic is considered one of the most popular materials to make guitar picks from because it’s affordable and easy to find in most music shops worldwide. It is also lightweight, making it ideal for people with short nails and hands. However, it may not be durable, so you might consider getting at least two plastic picks when starting your first guitar lessons.
Wooden picks are another popular choice among guitarists mainly because they offer an excellent grip on your fingers when playing your instrument, especially during fast-paced songs. Wood picks help to produce a warmer sound than plastic picks.
Horn, bone, and leather-made guitar picks:
These picks are generally made from natural animal byproducts and tend to be more durable and produce more quality sound. These picks are also popular with experienced guitar players.
Glass-made guitar picks:
A glass-made guitar pick is made of glass. Usually, borosilicate glass is heat-resistant and can withstand high temperatures. Glass guitar picks are more rigid and heavier than plastic-made guitar picks.
Metal-made guitar picks:
These guitar picks are made from different types of metals, producing a more harmonically rich sound than plastic picks and altering the sound of both acoustic and electric guitars.
Agate, Felt, New Tortis, and Tagua are examples of other guitar picks.
Should beginner guitar players use a pick?
You should use a guitar pick for better performance when you play melodies, lead guitar, or play a rhythmic chord progression. If you’re a beginner guitarist, it’s best to start with a pick. As a beginner guitarist, you will probably not have the finger strength or dexterity to play with just your fingers yet. It can make it difficult to learn basic chords.
A pick gives you greater control over the strings, although it might take some time before you get used to it. The feeling of a guitar pick in your hand differs from strumming with your fingers, so some people find it easier to transition from one method to another.
What guitar pick should you use? Is the type of guitar pick important for beginners?
If you are a beginner guitar player or want to improve your skills, go for lighter picks (less than 0.69 mm). They will make it much easier for you to play chords and scales on the guitar without straining your hands or fingers.
Medium picks (less than 0.80 mm) are also good, but you should always avoid heavy guitar picks (more than 1 mm) because they require more force from fingers while playing or scales on the guitar.
How to choose a guitar pick:
If you’re a beginner player, you may have asked yourself, at some point, which is the best pick to buy? Choosing the right guitar picks depends on what type of guitar you will play, acoustic or electric.
The right guitar pick can make the difference between being good and being great. Let’s discuss it.
Acoustic Guitar Picks For Beginners:
For all beginner guitarists choosing the right guitar pick for their acoustic guitar can be a hesitant decision. Choosing a thinner guitar pick for an acoustic guitar as a beginner is a right decision. You can select plastic-made guitar picks, or nylon picks to play your acoustic guitar. If you want to play more intricate melodies and solos, then choosing a thicker pick or medium guitar pick (thickness of 0.70 mm to 0.84 mm) will be great.
Electric Guitar Picks For Beginners:
Electric guitar picks are the most important things you should pay attention to when playing electric guitars. I recommend choosing medium-thickness picks (0.70 mm to 0.84 mm) if you’re starting with electric guitars and want to play fast melodies because they’re easy to handle and won’t break after using them regularly!
Now you have the idea. If you want to learn more about guitar picks, you can see this excellent video tutorial on guitar picks by clicking on the link. You can also learn more about acoustic guitars, electric guitars, and guitar-related tips and tricks from Yousician. If you want to buy an acoustic guitar, you can read our guide on How To Buy An Acoustic Guitar For Beginners In 2022. To choose the best acoustic guitar for a beginner, Donner DAG-1C: Best Beginner Acoustic Guitar With Unlimited Reviews will help you the most.
Choosing the right guitar pick as a beginner is a hesitant task. Thinking about the matter, I discussed everything related to guitar picks from the basics. What is it? What types of guitar picks are available right now according to the thickness? At last, I guided you through choosing the correct guitar picks for an acoustic or electric guitar. I think you have a clear idea about guitar picks, and you can decide while purchasing a guitar pick. I hope you enjoyed this blog. Anything to say? Leave a comment below. I’ll be glad to hear from you soon. Thank you!
- “Guitar Picks: How to Use and Choose a Guitar Pick | Yousician.” Yousician, 15 Aug. 2021, yousician.com/blog/guitar-picks.
- “Guitar Pick – Wikipedia.” Guitar Pick – Wikipedia, 1 Mar. 2022, en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Guitar_pick.
- “Acoustic Guitar – Wikipedia.” Acoustic Guitar – Wikipedia, 1 Oct. 2017, en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Acoustic_guitar.
Hi. I’m Saif Khan, a music enthusiast. Over the years, I have been passionate about playing musical instruments of different kinds, including guitars, drums, piano, and many more, and writing about them.
I am a professional writer and the founder of bestmusicinstrument.com – where I write about musical instruments, equipment, and other music-related articles. In addition, I’m a full-time blogger who loves to share useful content on playing musical instruments, and I have been writing about musical instruments since early 2019. When I started my site, I never thought it would become this big. I also run a Facebook page for my website.
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