When you prefer not to use your fingers to play guitar you can use a guitar pick or a plectrum. And there are so many different kinds available that it is hard to pick the right one. This article will cover 9 different ways guitar picks are made by looking at the materials that are used and maybe it will help you select the right guitar pick.

Plastic

These plectrums are often homemade by cutting up credit cards using the shape of an existing pick. You can vary the thickness of your pick easily by using a different kind of credit card or some other plastic strip.

Nylon

This material is used in the most common guitar picks and it comes in different colours and sizes. They most often have a triangle shape with rounded edges and the quality of the pick depends on the thickness or gauge.

Rubber

With a soft and flexible feel to them they are definitely different from any standard pick. And with the common triangle shape they are used in the same way, but the sound is much warmer. This material makes the plectrum perfect for playing acoustic guitar.

Felt

This material is even softer and more flexible than rubber and it gives you totally different feel and sound. There is less attack on the strings and most people prefer to use them for rhythm guitar.

Tortoise shell

These picks have been banned since 1973 and therefore are hard to get. However there are legal versions of these picks available on the market and for many guitar players the myth is interesting enough to try the feel of these kind of picks.

Gemstone

They are rock hard and they are made from a special kind of stone found in Brasil. With a very direct sound and beautiful natural patterns and colours the come in many unusual shapes and sizes.

Wood

You can make a wooden plectrum yourself when you know what kind of wood the use. But there are some manufacturers that use the right materials to make these picks unique in feel and sound.

Glass

Another hard material used to make plectrums. They come in only a few different sizes and colours and most of them are professionally handmade. The sound is smooth and that’s very surprising for this kind of material.

Metal

Finally there are people playing guitar with coins or any other little metal object they can find. And there also manufacturers that make them out of copper, stainless steel, brass and bronse.

Source by Martin Seij