The 10 Best Airbrush Kits

Updated December 14, 2017 by Sheila O'Neill

10 Best Airbrush Kits
Best High-End
Best Mid-Range
Best Inexpensive
We spent 43 hours on research, videography, and editing, to review the top choices for this wiki. Whether you're creating great works of art or just looking for a new way to apply makeup, you can get a lot of use out of these airbrush kits. They are ideal for crafting, face painting, decorating cakes, customizing cars, and more. We've included models that can handle fine details down to 1 mm through to units capable of blowing a 3-inch wide spray. When users buy our independently chosen editorial picks, we may earn commissions to support our work. Skip to the best airbrush kit on Amazon.

10. Badger 360

The versatile, 2-in-1 Badger 360 can be used for all kinds of projects, from touching up makeup to decorating T-shirts. It features a unique patented front end rotational seal that allows for either gravity or siphon feed usage, depending on your preference.
  • sprays lines as wide as 3 inches
  • made in the united states
  • compressor not included
Brand Badger Air-Brush Co.
Model 360-7
Weight 4.8 ounces
Rating 3.8 / 5.0

9. Photo Finish Cosmetic System

Whether you need to wear makeup for a stage or film production, or just as part of your morning routine, the Photo Finish Cosmetic System can help you apply your face paints in even layers every time. It comes with foundation, concealer, shimmering powder, and more.
  • included makeup is smudge-proof
  • not tested on animals
  • clogs if not cleaned regularly
Brand Advanced Skin Care
Model pending
Weight pending
Rating 4.3 / 5.0

8. Master Cake Decorating Set

If you've got a creative mind and a sweet tooth, the Master Cake Decorating Set can help take your desserts to the next level. It comes with 12 bottles of food-grade colors and a training book to get you started. It's great for both home cooks and professional bakers.
  • dyes are fda-approved
  • includes two types of nozzle
  • comes with air regulator
Brand Master Airbrush
Model KIT-SP1-20
Weight 10.5 pounds
Rating 4.1 / 5.0

7. Iwata-Medea Ninja Jet

The premium Iwata-Medea Ninja Jet is a smart choice for those looking for a lightweight, portable model. Its gravity-feed airbrush features a unique 0.35 mm needle and nozzle combination for fine-detail spraying, while also providing a high paint flow capacity.
  • large funnel shaped cup
  • sprays heavier acrylics well
  • durable hardened steel nozzles
Brand Iwata
Model KIT-SP7B-20-2
Weight 11 pounds
Rating 4.1 / 5.0

6. Grex Tritium

Designed for serious artists looking for a quality machine, the Grex Tritium uses a premium double action pistol-style trigger that is known for its high performance and versatility. It offers a smooth and consistent spray, giving users optimal control.
  • easy to switch between airbrushes
  • has a moisture trap
  • pricier than comparable alternatives
Brand Grex Airbrush
Model GCK03
Weight 13.1 pounds
Rating 4.7 / 5.0

5. Master Airbrush Professional

The Master Airbrush Professional includes a useful instructional guidebook for those just picking up the hobby, and a 5-piece mini cleaning brush set for easy maintenance. It also comes with a color mixing wheel and guide to help you create just the right shade.
  • mountable dual airbrush holder
  • six paint colors included
  • compressor tends to overheat
Brand Master Airbrush
Model KIT-SP7B-20-2
Weight 11.3 pounds
Rating 3.9 / 5.0

4. Iwata-Medea Deluxe

The Iwata-Medea Deluxe is a professional quality set that provides a consistent spray for even applications. The high detail, multi-purpose brushes perform well on a variety of surfaces, and give you the control needed for even the smallest designs.
  • includes a cleaning formula
  • handy artool freehand template
  • comes with 10 paint colors
Brand Iwata-Medea
Model IW 200
Weight 15.2 pounds
Rating 4.0 / 5.0

3. Paasche Single Action Package

The Paasche Single Action Package is an excellent option for beginners. It comes with clear instructions and includes a set of brushes for keeping the unit clean. Three different spray heads allow you to use it for a wide range of applications.
  • doesn't make too much noise
  • simple and easy to use
  • made from durable materials
Brand Paasche Airbrush
Model H-100D
Weight 5 pounds
Rating 4.6 / 5.0

2. Art of Air System

Makeup artists on a budget will appreciate the affordability of the Art of Air System. Despite its low cost, it still feels well-built, provides a nice consistent spray, and comes with a carrying case, a variety of foundations, a bronzer, and a shimmer highlighter.
  • air pressure is easy to control
  • simple to clean
  • only takes 5 minutes to assemble
Brand Art of Air
Model AOA-01
Weight 3.2 pounds
Rating 4.8 / 5.0

1. PointZero Dual Action

The PointZero Dual Action is a good choice for beginners who plan on working with a range of mediums. It comes with three different guns, so you'll be prepared to handle a wide variety of projects. And its six foot long air hose leaves you free to move around.
  • includes tutorial dvd
  • uses standard 110v outlet
  • professional-grade compressor
Brand PointZero Airbrush
Model pending
Weight 11.4 pounds
Rating 4.6 / 5.0

What Exactly Is Airbrushing?

An airbrush might sound like an intimidating tool, but it’s really just a small air-operated device that resembles a pen. An airbrush can spray out fluids ranging from paint to ink to food dye and can be used to paint on a number of mediums. Depending on what type of work you are doing, you'll need your air source to send out air at different PSIs. Professionals that work in all industries where coloring a product is necessary — like tattoo work, cake decoration, and makeup artistry — can benefit from using an airbrush kit.

Airbrush tools can achieve a level of detail that hand-done work simply cannot, and they can produce a soft look with zero visible brush strokes. That’s one of the reasons airbrush makeup can achieve an incredibly natural-looking end result, in which you often can’t even tell the person is wearing makeup. You can airbrush literally any surface from skin to wood, so long as the ingredient you are spraying is compatible with the surface. In other words, don’t spray paint on a cake — you’ll make your diners sick.

An airbrush must be plugged into an air source to function. When you pull the trigger on the airbrush, it disperses both air and the material you put inside. Most airbrushes have an internal mixer that ensures a balanced ratio of air and your other material comes out evenly, so you never have any thick areas of paint or other substance in one area.

The History Of The Airbrush

This genius little device wasn’t always called the airbrush. The first version of the airbrush was called the paint distributor. A man named Abner Peeler invented the earliest version of the tool, and ended up selling the patent for a mere $850 to brothers Liberty and Charles Walkup. He had no idea how popular his invention would become.

The paint distributor was made up of a “wind-wheel” and a needle. The placement of the needle — closer to the center of the wheel versus closer to the outer edges — determined how quickly the wheel moved. The needle was linked up to an air blast tube, and in the original model, all of the parts were operated separately.

After the idea had passed through a couple of owners and a couple of engineers, it transformed into what today is called a double action airbrush. In a double action brush, both the air supply and the paint supply are controlled by the same trigger, which allows for one-handed, continuous operation.

After making some critical changes, the Walkup brothers saw $50,000 in common stock sales and with that money they formed the Rockford Manufacturing Company. Rockford eventually changed to the Airbrush Manufacturing Company. Liberty Walkup and his wife — a photo retoucher by trade — promoted their product at various photography exhibitions around the world, and soon enough, major photography companies were ordering the product in bulk.

What A Complete Kit Should Come With

You can’t achieve that perfect airbrushed look with just the airbrush pen alone. You’ll need a few more items to get started. Your most complete airbrush kit will include items that cover everything from your artistic needs to your safety needs. The really well thought out airbrush kits will come with a respirator to protect your health while you’re working closely with toxic materials like paint. If you are working with items meant to be consumed like food dye, you probably don’t need to worry about this.

The most basic of kits should come with an airbrush hose. You can’t screw your airbrush tool directly onto your air source, nor would you want to because that would put a lot of restriction on your arm movements. This is where the hose comes in. The hose attaches on one end to your airbrush, and on the other end to your air source. Not every hose matches every airbrush, which is why going with a kit where the items have been preselected for each other is a good idea.

The air source that the other end of your hose attaches to is an air compressor, which converts power into potential energy that is stored as pressurized air. There are different types of compressors; you can find your standard compressor at a big buy store like Lowes or Home Depot. These are best for working on larger items like t-shirts or bicycles. If you need a more precise compressor for work like makeup jobs, go to an arts and craft store — they’ll have compressors designed for more delicate jobs like nail art.

One final item you should look for is an airbrush holder, which is exactly what it sounds like. Just like a case for your phone or iPad, a holder for your airbrush will protect this very expensive tool if you drop it on the ground. There is no reason not to buy one, and there are hundreds (of dollars) of reasons to buy one.

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Last updated on December 14, 2017 by Sheila O'Neill

Sheila is a writer, cosplayer, and juggler who lives in Southern California. She loves sitting down with a hot cup of tea and coming up with new ideas. In her spare time, Sheila enjoys drawing, listening to podcasts, and describing herself in the third person.

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