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Best Airbrush Kits for Any Hobby

  1. Iwata-Medea Eclipse HP CS Dual Action Airbrush Kit
  2. Harder & Steenbeck Airbrush Kit
  3. Badger Air-Brush Co. Model 105 Patriot Fine Gravity Airbrush Kit
  4. Paasche VL-SET Double Action Siphon Feed Airbrush Kit
  5. Testors Mini Airbrush Kit
  6. Buyer's Guide

While many art materials have only a limited range of uses, airbrush painting is a very diverse hobby. Car enthusiasts use airbrushes to create hood decals and full-body paint jobs, makeup artists use airbrushes for ultra-smooth, even application and there are even airbrushes intended specifically for painting fingernails. This list focuses on the broad group of airbrushes used for fine art projects but when applicable, we’ve noted which of these best picks can be used for special projects such as fingernails or autos.

It may take a little effort to understand the terminology used, but the basics are simple. With a single-action brush, artists can change the airflow but not the flow of paint. With double-action brushes, artists change both the airflow and the volume of paint. Gravity-flow airbrushes have a cup fixed to the top of the brush, while siphon-flow airbrushes draw the paint up from a tube fixed to the bottom of the airbrush. The style affects the type of painting to a degree, though having a high-quality airbrush is more important than having a particular style.

These best airbrush kits in 2022 were selected based on their versatility or range of uses, as well as their reliability and ease of use. The airbrushes are all favorites among artists and have a good reputation for quality, but it is important to treat them carefully and to read the manufacturer’s instructions before beginning use.

Detailing the Best Airbrush Kits of 2022

Iwata-Medea Eclipse HP CS Dual Action Airbrush Kit - Best Airbrush Kit Overall

The Iwata Brand is popularly acknowledged as one of the best airbrush brands available, known for its quality and five-year warranty. It might be bewildering to sort through all of the models available, but the Deluxe Kit is one of Iwata’s most extensive starter kits, with the brand’s popular Eclipse HP-CS Airbrush, ten bottles of Medea paint, sample templates, and even two instructional DVDs.

The set makes it easy for a beginner to start practicing immediately without worrying about forgotten supplies or hunting down paint and templates. Even without the rest of the set, the Eclipse HP-CS is a great, beginner-friendly airbrush and works well for mid-size and larger projects. The brand is known for being moderately expensive but many artists consider the Iwata airbrushes to be worth the full price. Like all of Iwata’s airbrushes, this airbrush excels in detail and quality.

best Harder & Steenbeck Airbrush Kit

Harder & Steenbeck Airbrush Kit - Runner Up

One of the best brands available, Harder & Steenbeck offers several top-line airbrushes including this kit with the Ultra double-action airbrush. The Ultra comes with a 0.2-millimeter nozzle and a 2-milliliter gravity-feed cup, though it can be modified with a larger nozzle or paint cup. The kit also comes with a starter collection of general-purpose paints and a portable air compressor, making it a compact, mobile set ideal for beginners or anyone working on the go.

The Ultra is Harder & Steenbeck’s introductory model, and it’s one of the brand’s least expensive airbrushes. The other models are a fairly pricey especially when compared with other brands but they have an excellent reputation for quality.

Badger Air-Brush Co. Model 105 Patriot Fine Gravity Airbrush Kit - Honorable Mention

As a dual action, internal mix airbrush system, the Badger Patriot is easy to handle and versatile. The airbrush works for projects as diverse as detailing cars or painting fingernails. This airbrush is similar to Badger’s Anthem 155, another popular model with the main difference being the Patriot uses a gravity-feed cup which creates a thinner line and allows better control over fine details.

The Patriot doesn’t come with any extra supplies, but it uses a single-nozzle design allowing artists to work with almost any medium, from inks to acrylics, without needing to change needles or stock multiple pieces. It’s recommended as a model for beginners, but it has enough quality to suit a professional.

Paasche VL-SET Double Action Siphon Feed Airbrush Kit - Consider

This model uses a standard, all-purpose siphon feed to create a highly versatile tool. While most airbrushes are either single or double-feed, this model allows users to swap back and forth between the two styles. The VL Airbrush is designed as a double-action airbrush with a flow of paint which increases with airflow but for projects which need a steady, constant flow of paint it can function as a single-action brush.

The airbrush works for a wide variety of paints and projects from cake decorating to auto painting. It has a spray width varying from 1-1/2 inches down to an ultra-fine 1/32 inch for inserting miniscule detailing. The set comes with all three sizes of heads, as well as the other basic accessories an artist would need to get started. Like the Paasche Talon, it’s a set good choice for beginning or intermediate artists who want versatility at a mid-range, reasonable price.

Testors Mini Airbrush Kit - Best Airbrush Kit

While many other airbrushes focus on detail, Testor’s Aztek airbrushes work better on large areas. Some artists have issues with the Aztek airbrushes breaking down frequently or needing special treatment. While this brand is known for its cheap airbrushes, they’re still a popular choice for their price and how they handle.

Testor’s airbrushes cover the full range from a basic kit at a fraction of other airbrush’s cost to this massive all-purpose kit. The Ultimate Kit includes the Aztek A470, a double-action internal-mix airbrush featuring a roller which allows artists to control the paint flow and it’s a good choice for projects which require covering large areas. The kit also comes with 9 nozzles, 7 paint cups, and an adaptor for fitting the airbrush to a compressor.

Buyer's Guide

If you are a beginner, airbrushing may seem daunting at first glance. However, if you are fine art professional or hooked on do-it-yourselfers, you will have to leave behind rattle cans and paint tubs behind at one point.

Whether you are a full-time cake decorator who wants to delve into airbrushing or simply trying airbrushing for a cool car makeover, buying an airbrush kit will make your airbrushing journey relatively facile rather than going out and fretting over buying all the parts separately. However, a slew of various airbrush kits is available in the market ready to send you running back home, overwhelmed. So here are a few things to consider before buying the airbrush kit best suitable for you!

What are the different types of airbrush guns?

The type of airbrush gun you go for will be per your personal choice and professional demands. The two main types of airbrush guns are based on the action, that is, how the triggers of an airbrush function.

Single-action airbrush

As the name suggests, the single-action airbrush gun has a single knob near the tip of the gun which controls the amount of airflow when the trigger is pushed. The mechanism is very similar to spray paint and therefore, the single-action airbrushing gun is very user-friendly for beginners or occasional users.

The simplicity of the single-action airbrush comes at a cost of limitation of precision. It is a perfect choice if you want high coverage and no fine lines and gradients like applying ceramic glazes or viscous paints, but it may not be suitable if you are a t-shirt designer or you are working on a project that requires fine details.

The learning process as well as cleaning ad maintenance of a single-action airbrush is relatively trouble-free.

Double-action airbrush

A double-action airbrush is for the pros! With multiple controls, it allows the user to control both airflow and the volume of paint. With a double-action airbrush, you can produce a variety of opacities, lines, color gradients, and punctilious details. It also offers a snug hold so you can work comfortably for many hours. The added precision control makes it the quintessential choice for freehand artists, logo designers, and makeup artists.

The complexity of results comes with a drawback of complexity in usage. It requires time and skill to master the double-action airbrush. It may also not be the best choice for people who want to paint large surface areas.

What are the different types of airbrush feeds?

There are three ways paint can be fed to the gun. The way the paint is fed leads to diverse results.


Gravity-feed airbrushes use the principle of gravity to feed paint. The paint cup is on the top and it drops paint in small amounts in the mixing chamber. A functionality worth mentioning is that a gravity-feed airbrush can work on all pressures. Hence, for artists working on low pressures to get finer details, it is a life-saver.

Some gravity-feed airbrushes allow interchangeable cups but many do not. These cups hold lesser paint than siphon-feed or side-feed airbrushes but they are easier to clean as there are fewer parts.


Siphon-feed or suction-feed airbrushes have a bottle of paint attached to the bottom of the airbrush. The siphon-feed airbrush is ideal for bigger airbrushing projects as it stores more paint, a convenience, so you do not have to stop for refills.


Side-feed airbrushes offer the best of both worlds. They can hold a large volume of paint as well as work at low pressures. A suction or gravity-feed cup is attached to the side of the airbrush which can be revolved by 360 degrees to offer comfort while working at difficult angles.

Despite the multiple features of the side-feed airbrush, it is unpopular among artists because cleaning them is a strenuous job and there have been occasional leaks reported.

What are the different airbrush mixes?

Airbrush mixing is differed by the location of where the paint and air are incorporated.

External mix

External mix airbrushes mix the paint and air outside the airbrush. These are not very good at producing diaphanous and fine patterns as the paint is not well atomized. However, they are productive in atomizing viscous paints.

Internal mix

Popular than its predecessor, the internal mix airbrush produces delicate patterns and atomizes paint more effectively.

Which compressor should you go for?

In an airbrush kit, a compressor is included. However, the compressor is the most expensive part of the kit as well as significant. So choosing the kit with the right compressor should be a priority. Following are some things to keep in mind when choosing the compressor in your airbrushing kit.

Pressure gauge and regulator

A pressure gauge and regulator are a must for novices. Experienced users don’t need a gauge as they can interpret the airflow by the opacity of paint however, a gauge is very helpful for newbies. A regulator on the other hand will assist in regulating the pressure between 1.5 to 2.2 bar.


A compressor with a tank is naturally more pricey and is not a necessity for those working on small projects. Without a tank, a compressor will work continuously while the airbrush is working but with pulsations. A tank will eradicate any and all pulsations and are suitable for those working on bigger projects.

Water separator

A water separator is an essential add-on to a compressor. It will prevent distortion of paint patterns due to the mixing of condensed water in the paint.


Compressors with an auto-off function reduce noise by 75 percent however, these compressors are over-priced.

Which nozzles should you have?

For a professional, a range of different-sized nozzles in an airbrush set is ideal to have. A range of 0.2mm to 0.5mm is available in the market and 0.5mm is the most common one among users.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: What surfaces can be painted using an airbrush kit?
A: Any and all surfaces can be painted depending on the paint you use. On some particular surfaces, you may have to apply a base coat before airbrushing.

Q: How do I clean my airbrush kit?
A: The airbrush must be cleaned in two instances, after every use, and after every paint change. To clean, you will detach the container and use a cotton swab to get rid of all the paint. Then fill the container with a cleaner and re-attach it. Operate the gun until clear fluid is seen and leave the container out for drying. And you’re done!

Q: What are the safety concerns associated with airbrushing?
A: Keep the room ventilated to avoid inhaling paint droplets and be cautious while using needles. Also, safely dispose of paints.

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