If you are reading this article, you are probably interested in starting or have already started playing the guitar.
Getting informed about the choice of guitar, guitar accessories, and equipment is very important for beginners because it is what can make or break your will and motivation.
How to pick the right pick
Choosing a guitar pick is most often secondary when it comes to buying guitar accessories.
Although it seems quite unimportant, choosing the right pick is a major factor in creating the sound of the guitar.
For beginner guitar players, the first pick is almost always the first that comes to hand. Picks are overlooked because most people don't do any research before buying them.
This is wrong because even with such a low financial investment, things can go wrong. The pick often doesn't fit the style of music or your style of playing.
So in order to make your learning experience better and your playing more enjoyable make sure you choose a pick that fits your needs.
Usually, the first choice is made when you start learning the basics. This is usually about the time when the guitarist decides on a certain style and genre.
It really just depends on your favorite band and guitarist or sometimes even the reason you started to play.
Picks for acoustic guitar beginners
As the saying goes, it is never too late, but when it comes to choosing the right pick, the choice can definitely be made much earlier. And here's a helpful tip.
For absolute beginners, the best choice is light (between 40mm and 60mm) tri-tip pick as most guitarists usually start with an acoustic guitar.
What does this mean?
The thinner pick is much more flexible and is makes practicing chords and rhythm easier, which makes it ideal for picking in the beginner stages.
When it comes to size, the tri-tip picks are ideal for strumming because they are large and dominate all wires equally.
This creates a full and rich sound.
But this is when it comes to acoustic guitars. If you are interested in the best picks for beginners in electric guitar, then read on.
Picks for beginners on electric guitar
Electric guitars function completely differently and therefore require a special approach.
Their neck is narrower and the strings are thinner so now the situation is reversed - we need a thicker and at least medium size pick to get a firmer, more precise and more stable sound.
For beginners of the electric guitar, the best choice is a medium thickness (from 60mm to 80mm) and standard size and shape.
In addition to these two thicknesses for beginners, there are two more worth mentioning.
In addition to the light and the medium pick, which are a solid choice for beginners, there are two more options, which we will look into.
When it comes to thickness there are also heavy (80mm to 1.2mm) and extra heavy picks (1.2mm and higher).
The thickness affects both the way we play as well as the feeling and the sound.
Thinner picks can produce a lighter and softer sound.
These picks are great for songwriters and pop, pop-rock, country guitar players.
As the thickness moves from thinner to thicker the sound becomes more stable and mellow.
Medium thickness is great for almost any type of guitar player.
Lastly, the thickest picks are ideal for jazz guitarists looking for a warmer sound.
The form of the pick is also a big factor when choosing.
Alongside the beforementioned tri-tip and the standard picks, there are the options for the jazz pick and the hybrid jambo jazz pick that has the shape of the jazz pick with the size of the standard shape pick.
The shape and size of the jazz picks make them extra precise and ideal for fast and accurate playing.
This choice is most common among jazz guitar players as well as the "need for speed" guitarists such as Steve Vai, John Petrucci, and many others.
Another pick shape that is often used by beginner guitar players is the finger/thumb nail guitar pick.
These can be a great solution when it comes to fingerstyle playing.
Picks for metal
Knowing the needs of guitarists who study and play metal it is necessary to pay special attention to them.
Generally, this is a genre that requires a high level of technical training and picking is the biggest factor when it comes to the right hand (or the left in the case of the left-handed guitarists).
There are two basic elements on which metal music is based - riffs and solos.
That's why I have two suggestions, so the choice remains yours.
Ideal picks for playing riffs are the heavy picks that create a strong and powerful sound.
As for size, the standard will do the job.
Although the previous combination is good for lead metal guitarists, the heavy jazz size pick is also a good solution because it makes the playing faster and extra precise.
Materials and texture
Two other factors that are less noticeable but quite influential are the material and texture of the pick.
This is usually chosen at random when buying a new pick and can be often overlooked.
Each material creates a unique sound. The material can be an even more determining factor than the thickness and size of the pick.
The most common material is Celluloid.
Picks made of this type of plastic have a light and crisp sound that doesn't make much difference to beginners.
They are quite uncomfortable to hold and are not very durable due to the plastic material.
Beginners might not be able to feel right away that the pick is bad, but they will probably feel the difference when they try picks made from better materials.
One of those materials is Nylon.
Even though they have a light sound similar to the celluloid picks, their texture makes the grip more pleasant.
This can be quite useful especially when the hand becomes sweaty.
One of the best choices is the Delrin pick.
They are tough and very durable and they have a very smooth feel. These are one of the more enjoyable picks to play with.
There are other types of plastic that can be used for picks, but also worth to mention are the picks made of wood and metal.
These picks are rare and can be found mostly with blues and country guitar players.
So is there a rule for choosing?
All of these options exist because not everyone starts their guitar journey the same way.
In the end, the right pick is the one that will fit your hand most naturally and that is something that can change constantly until you find your ideal pick or even as you progress with your playing.
However, it is good to know a thing or two about picks when you start learning the guitar.
So using this guide, who knows, maybe your first choice will be the right one.