Best Watercolor Paints Reviewed & Rated for Quality
Looking to paint awesome pictures? Try using watercolors. This type of paint is water-based. This makes them easy to apply and safer for you too. That is because they are devoid of the toxins that are largely present in them.
Also, they are less likely to inflict respiratory illnesses. Most oil-based alternatives have a distinctively sharp smell. When inhaled for a long time, they numb the nose and respiratory faculties. This is something to watch out for if you are suffering from allergies, asthmatic, or is pregnant. Such fumes are way too dangerous for people suffering with these health conditions.
To help you make the right purchase, we have identified the top ten best brand names. These are useful in all regards. They dry fast, come in awesome colors, and are easy to apply. Read on to find out more about these wonderful products.
In a Hurry? The test winner after 8 hrs of research
Can be used for many tasks
Creates beautiful artwork
Great on paper
Non toxic pigments
10 Best Watercolor Paints
1. Kuretake MC2036V
Can be used for many tasks
Creates beautiful artwork
Great on paper
Non toxic pigments
Not for beginners
If you are a professional artist, you typically use only professional watercolors. Look to no other brand than this set. It has been tried and tested to meet the set standards well.
You will find them ideal for illustrating, sketching, and Sumi-being. Yet one more advantage is its comprehensive nature. That is because it comes in many color combinations and options to choose from.
36 Unique Colors
This set has many color options. As a matter of fact, it comes in 36 color options that you can choose from. Other than that, these colors are available in multiple sets of 12, 18, and 24.
You have all the benefits of maximum convenience with this package. You will be capable of handling just about every artistry need with these colors. You won’t have to waste much of your time while at it.
All the colors above are enclosed in the appropriate packaging. The box measures 13 inches long, by 8 inches wide, by ¾ inches deep. There are definitely many benefits when you purchase this awesome package.
You can easily transport it to your desired location with ease. You will rarely have any hassle as you move about with it. It is also easy to engage.
Cost and Value
By far, the most significant aspect is its comprehensive nature. A number of benefits come with this purchase. Chief among these is the fact that you will be able to handle all your watercolor techniques “in house.”
The colors are also long-lasting. You do not have to use them immediately after you buy them. This gives you freedom of choice. Lastly, they also yield enduring impacts. This set is readily available for purchase.
42 assorted colors
Want to paint extremely large areas? We recommend that you use this color package. That is because it is available in 42 assorted colors that you can use. At the same time, it is accompanied by three brushes.
By all accounts, this set is great for field sketching and outdoor art. It is sufficient enough to cover the largest areas. What’s more? It saves you time while working.
The brushes that come with this set are not ordinary. On the contrary, they are strong and durable. This makes them perfectly suited for repeated art tasks and applications.
In all, the brushes have two round tips. The dyes, on the other hand, are contained in easy-to-squeeze barrels. The combination of these two features will surely yield you maximum control. Your work will be a breeze.
Each droplet has lightfast pigments. This simply means that they take less time to settle on surfaces. Further, they also dry faster, resist fading, and hardly discolor, even when subjected to direct sunlight.
Therefore, you will achieve more meaningful and long-lasting outcomes with this set. Take hold, throw on your apron, and use this set to adorn the landscapes that require longevity. You will never regret the outcome.
Cost and Value
You should purchase this package with confidence. That is because the manufacturer backs it with a 100% guaranteed satisfaction. The main reason underlying this is the quality of its pigment makeup. They are safe and nontoxic.
Other than that, they conform to the various safety standards. If you are not completely satisfied, you are entitled to receive a full refund. You have nothing to lose and everything to gain.
3. Paul Rubens
Mixes and blends
Portable and reusable
Easy to work
Poor dark effects
Are you looking for a paint set that glitters? If you are, this set is the one to opt for. As their designation implies, they are truly good looking.
You should consider them if you looking for sparkling outcomes. As a whole, the set comes in the form of 24 different pallets. All of them are enclosed in a portable metallic casing. As a result, they last longer.
With all factors considered, this is the set for you as an artist. It contains high-purity pigments that are extra fine. Each pigment features Arabic gum and OX Grall.
Further making this set suited for the job is its transparency. They also diffuse fast and very well, not to mention the ultra-high lightfastness and saturation. It is good to have them for those projects where you cannot compromise on quality.
As stated, this paint set glitters. The reason is that it is pre-mixed with iridescent mediums. Together, these individual traits yield special lighting effects. This, in turn, produces a beautiful shimmer.
This is the package to set your eyes on. The glittering features will make otherwise illegible writing appear truly bold and clearly legible.
Cost and Value
Yet again, the manufacturer provides reliable back-end customer service. You are guaranteed wholesome satisfaction at all points of use. Also, they have a dedicated customer service line.
If at any time you encounter an issue, feel free to direct it to the attention of the team. They will address it within the shortest time possible. This package set is available for purchasing.
4. Sakura XNCW-24N
Field sketching only
Want to sketch and decorate items? Many painting sets are available for the job. However, none comes closer to this one. That is because it is primarily made to sketch out in the field and nothing more.
To make this possible, the varnish contains many traits that are unique. The longevity of the pigments, their fast drying qualities, and their relative ease of application are some of these. Why not try your luck with it?
Compared to many other brands, this one blends easily. This means that it mixes with other colors to yield a third color easily. The possibilities that come along with this arrangement are virtually endless.
You can create a range of colors that are outside the range of ordinary sets. Moreover, it is also possible for you to accurately mimic natural colors as much as possible.
When you are done with decorating, you do not have to discard the entire package. Instead, you just have to fill in some ink and there you go! You will, therefore, be able to create your art repeatedly.
Also, the water brush is simple to carry around. It has an adequate water storage compartment which keeps you supplied with just enough ink. Yet again, this enables you to complete your tasks uninterrupted.
Cost and Value
This brand name conforms to the American Society for Testing and Materials D4236 standards. As such, it is safe, very effective, and on the whole, capable of doing a better job. You can place your confidence and trust in it.
Generally, this is the one we recommend if you happen to be allergic to oil-based varnishes or other pungent smells. You will not be poisoned or predisposed to any respiratory illnesses.
5. Winsor & Newton
Integral mixing palette
Less specialized roles
For general and light everyday work, you will have no better selection than this one. It comes in 14 pieces and is enclosed in a half pan. These two features make it ideal for ordinary light projects.
Use it to cover ordinary paper, cardboard, and manila paper. You will, in so doing, accrue beautiful results in the process. This is in addition to its convenience of use.
Generally speaking, white paper gives off brilliance to the colors used. For this reason, the end results are truly awesome to behold. Also, the set enables you to use the colors as highlighters.
The results of these colors are captivating indeed. Apart from enduring the test of time, they also stand out clearly. All these are long-term benefits.
You will also note that the paint yields uniform consistency when applied. No part of the process is left unkempt. Similarly, no other part is done haphazardly. The benefits do not just end there.
The colors are consistent, which makes them easier to apply and make use of. For this reason, you will hardly encounter any unnecessary difficulties.
Cost and Value
When compared to other colors, this one is rich in quality. This means that it incorporates all the vital traits that the ideal set of its kind should. These colors are fast drying and produce great results as a whole.
You should, therefore, expect to derive value by laying your hands on this set. Gone are the times when you will have to worry about scratches and peeling. Instead, you will attain reliable outcomes.
6. Castle Art Supplies
24 hand-picked colors
Delicate and dramatic effects
Can be used only for easy projects
Are you a beginner in the field of painting? You have a companion with this particular color set. It is truly easy to mix and delivers good outcomes. What’s more? It comes in 24 vibrant colors.
You do not have to have ever painted before. All the parts and components of this set are easy to comprehend. Get a hold of these watercolor tubes and start your artwork today!
Even though the set is intended to be used by beginners, it is nevertheless professional-grade. This makes it usable for those circumstances or applications that require strict outcomes. It also brings along many benefits.
These range from the right intensity, excellent performance, best colors, and truly lasting results. Even as a beginner, your work will not be haphazard. Instead, it will be high-quality, which is required for high-end jobs.
The manufacturer of this set has made deliberate attempts to make the pigments pure. To do this, they got rid of all impurities which generally occur with paint sets. The end result is unrivaled color intensity.
Therefore, expect your overall outcome to be above par. Regardless of how complicated the entire process can be, know for certain that this package will yield you the results you so desire.
Cost and Value
To make your purchase more of a breeze, this one is backed by incentives. The manufacturer has put in place a money-back guarantee, plus a service policy in place. Buy it; and if you’re not satisfied, you can request a refund — it’s that simple!
Additionally, the tubes that contain the pigments are also airtight. They prevent the percolation of moisture and air. This way, the integrity and quality of the color is preserved.
Specifically for artists
Fresh and vibrant
Difficult to apply
Are you a beginner who wants to elevate your skills a notch higher? If you are, this is the set of colors to pick. It contains 36 assorted vibrant colors.
At the same time, these colors are ideal for all kinds of artwork. For more meaningful results, use this set on a daily basis. It is only then that you will be able to improve your artistry skills.
Water Brush Pen
For applying your artwork on the associated surfaces, you want to make use of a water brush pen. The pen comes along with the set. It is particularly suited for handling such colors. Also, it is strong enough to resist soaking.
With these pens, you will be able to create a masterpiece. That is because the pens last a long time. They won’t malfunction, so you will have unparalleled results or effects.
Many people have complained about their half pens being damaged. This is not the case with this one. Instead, it is adequately protected from potential damage. Examples of these are bumps, deflections, and strong impacts.
You can be sure that the pen will stand the test of time no matter what. You can easily use them for your drawing needs and do so repeatedly.
Cost and Value
If you happen to encounter any issues in the course of use, do not worry. Just send a message to the customer service team. Your complaint will get resolved. The process is very simple.
You will not be asked any unnecessary questions in the event of a complaint, not to mention that your refund will be processed within the shortest time possible.
High-color pigment retention
Creating results that are both pleasing to the eye and picture-perfect is no joke. It is ordinarily a daunting task which requires specially designed paints. This is the package we recommend for such a job.
In all, this one provides artistic expression. Added to this is the fact that it is suited for most projects. You’ll want to buy it for those projects that have to meet stringent standards.
By using this particular set, it is possible for you to be able to handle many kinds of outcomes. These include scenery, abstract, landscape, wall art, and finally, fine portrait varieties. All these for a tiny fee!
Your choice of this particular package brings about many benefits indeed. You save time and effort as you do not have to shuffle in between varieties of paints.
Other than being multipurpose, this set also delivers attractive outcomes. Many past users have noted that the results are extremely vivid, super attractive, and highly pigmented. This is completely unlike any other.
You will never experience top-quality artistry until you try out this set. Why not grab and make use of it for your next project?
Cost and Value
Much like other products of this kind, this one is also backed with a satisfaction guarantee. This is meant to give you confidence as you continue to use it.
The guarantee comes with two options. The first is an around-the-clock customer service regime. If you encounter any issues, simply let the seller know. The second is a generous refund and return policy - no questions asked. This package is readily available for ordering.
Only for kids
If you are searching for a product that is designed specifically for children, this is the watercolor we recommend. It contains a whopping 36 vibrant colors. Ideally, it is simple enough for your kids.
For the best results, use this set strictly on watercolor paper. It comes with a brush and pallets. You may also give it as a gift to your children. That is because it is well-suited and safe for them to use.
All in all, the set is of premium-grade quality. This, however, does not affect the pricing at all. That is because the item is affordable. You will find it great for kids and artists alike.
As you can see, this art package is simple enough for your child to apply. At the same time, it yields outcomes which rival those of professional applications. You get more for less.
Tested for Safety
Another reason why the Bianyo is great for your child is the fact that it is tested for safety. Indeed, the item meets and exceeds the en-71 and the American Society for Testing and Materials safety standards.
Even if your child accidentally swallows the paint, you will know that it will not cause any harm. This also means your child’s system will be spared of any possible problems. What more can you ask for as a parent?
Cost and Value
The manufacturer of this item is mostly concerned with your safety and overall satisfaction. That is why they have put in place an excellent customer service team. You should not hesitate to contact them if there are any issues.
Do not hesitate with opting for this set. The world of artistry awaits you!
10. Daniel Smith
Stunning gold hue
Burnt sienna light
Only for experts
Could it be that you are an expert in the dual fields of decoration and artwork? If you are, this is the product to lay your hands on. It contains all the armory that you, as an expert workman, require to do a good job.
Together, all these components yield some pretty awesome outcomes. These include fewer incidences of fading, faster drying times, and long-lasting outcomes, to name but a few!
Hansa Yellow Deep Color
Topping these components is the Hansa yellow deep pigment. This is so called because it is very bright and clearly visible. Also vital is its high-tinting and semi-transparent organic makeup.
When applied to a surface, it yields outcomes that are largely unprecedented. From the inability to peel off easily, to ease of cleanliness, the benefits are huge.
Ultramarine Blue Color
Another color worth mentioning is Ultramarine Blue. It brings about calm to an otherwise bright area. This particular color is intense, yet pure enough for legible results.
One thing to note about this is the subtle, granulating nature of this color. They are fine, and therefore take just a short time to settle. Being subtle also means that they are hardly affected by scratches.
Cost and Value
Perhaps no other pigment in our discussion is better suited for expert applications. This is the one that will provide you with those outcomes you are desperately yearning for.
Make your purchase with confidence. A team of robust customer care executives are always on standby to handle any inquiries. They will resolve any of your needs. Why don’t you give it a try?
Criteria Used for Evaluation
There are varieties of waterpaint packages that are out on the market. Rare sets contain a list of uncommon color schemes such as raw amber, Chinese white, lamp black, Payne’s grey, burnt sienna, burnt umber and hooker's green.
Other color choices include sap green, viridian, emerald green, ultramarine blue, cerulean blue, cobalt blue, crimson red, Prussian blue, scarlet, rose, vermilion, orange, yellow ochre, flesh tint, lemon, and medium yellow.
Depending on the color combination you want, there are diverse contemporary flamboyant colors available. The colors you select depend on your choice and preference. It also depends on the nature of work to be done. Colors are languages in themselves, they convey thoughts and impressions that mere words cannot express.
The value of a brand product is a major criterion to be considered before making a purchase. Color paints are considered highly valuable for the style of art desired. They are a very good option for art and school projects, decorative living room murals, and styles of wallpaper. They are highly suitable for professional painters as well as budding artists.
They are manufactured specifically to portray super attractive warm colors that are superbly pigmented and vivid. In the long run, colors help to preserve perfect pictures that are pleasing to behold. They give an overall artistic expression to any craft.
Art paint is mostly made by mixing coloring substances (powdered pigments) with Arabic gum. This gum prevents the paint from shedding off the paper’s surface when dry and sticks the paint together. Sets are mostly packaged in tubes (moist) or made into dry cubes.
There is a special type of paper that is mostly used by watercolorists. It has different textures and thickness. The type of paper chosen by the artist will depend on his demands. The thicker and heavier types take more time to dry. Lightweight paper is more suitable to work with.
The perfect choice of paper is one that is made of linen. In terms of strength and duration, it is the best choice as compared to paper made from wood pulp. In the course of the manufacturing process, the paint is covered with materials called size. The size is composed of gelatin or glue. The quantity of size used depends on the quantity of water the paper will absorb.
The best types of brushes to use are the ones that are made from horse hair or any animal that is similar to a weasel. The perfect type of brush is one that absorbs the appropriate quantity of water and is released gradually when it is applied to paper.
Ease of Use
One of the major factors that determine the choice of a watercolor brand is its ease of use. The mode of its operation should be easy to understand. When you buy a product that is not easy to use, you will spend more money trying to employ the services of an instructor or a tutor who will help you out on how to go about it.
Watercolor paints should be easy to handle. You do not need to be a professional to make use of it. There are easy step by step instructions that you can follow as a beginner to get the desired outcome.
Painting with watercolor can be a very interesting hobby. It is a skill that affords one the opportunity of exploring their ideas and concepts. Every picture starts with a thin layer paint that serves as the background. The entire canvas is usually covered as a result and the technique is very simple and effective.
You get to create fantastic effects using the wet technique. With this technique, you get to work faster and add previous layers on the working layer. Another technique used is one that gives a different color when you add a color onto another color. It depends on what outcome you want to achieve. It is very flexible and offers you the monopoly of the outcome.
With some artwork, the areas are completely left white. So you decide which of the sides you will like to paint and which side you wish to leave blank. You must note that the most appropriate set of colors are obtained when using paint that comes from straight tubes.
The painting can also be done with other tools. This is a major factor that makes it stand out. You can use scrapers, sprayers, sticks, and sponges to make it unique. Most artists even combine pencil drawings with watercolors and other major techniques.
Expert Interviews & Opinions
Changes in environmental conditions such as temperature can dramatically cause damage to the paint. In art galleries and museums where the temperature is way below 20 degrees, you will definitely feel the effect. This is because artwork is best preserved in those temperatures.
Ensure that you maintain a steady temperature and relative humidity. Anything outside this will be harmful to your art collection.
The place where your artwork is displayed is also very important. Not all places are suitable for artwork painted with watercoloring. As much as possible, ensure that you place it away from where oil, heat, and any traces of moisture could affect it.
Furthermore, do not hang them near heat-transmitting household appliances. These will permanently damage the color pigment. Ensure that you change the position of your art periodically.
Watercolor paintings are known to be highly reactive to external environmental factors like humidity and light. Avoid hanging paintings close to windows where there is easy access to sunlight. The colors will easily fade away due to it being in direct or indirect access.
As much as possible, use decorative and customized glass frames. They have the exact functionality and glamour that is needed for your art piece. The quality of the frame used will go a long way in determining how long the artwork will last.
It is important that the materials used doesn't affect the painting in any way. Choosing archival framing is preferred when it comes to achieving this desired outcome. It does alter the originality of the handiwork.
Framing your artwork using glass is a process that is highly recommended by experts. The glass used should be denglass or plexiglass. Make sure that the glass is UV-coated. This will serve as a form of protection against dust, mold, mildew, and moisture.
Other Factors to Consider
When you are heavily involved in your hobbies, it not only exits you from boredom: it gives you comfort and maximum satisfaction of doing something you totally enjoy.
Whether you are a novice or a professional who is looking for activities to occupy you at your leisure, watercolor painting can be a remarkable choice of hobbies. It is simple and easy to comprehend. There are so many resources that are available to help you hit your desired outcome.
All you need to do is to be willing and have a passion to learn. You are assured to achieve the skills involved in becoming an outstanding watercolorist. There are video tutorials to watch that will help improve your technique.
There are so many accessories involved to make the painting process a worthwhile experience. First of all, you need papers. The paper needs to be of high quality to achieve a positive result. There are different types of papers that serve different purposes. These makes consist of rough, hot, and cold compressed paper. The best type of paper mainly used by most artists is cold pressed paper.
The next accessory to consider is the colors. You must also ensure that you choose a high quality set which could either be in tubes or pans. The color quality consists of 2 types: the artist quality color and the student color. The artist quality color is more vibrant and highly recommended. Other accessories used include brushes, palette, and tables.
Color sets add life to your artwork, craft, and piece. With helpful tools and tips, you are sure of getting the best of experiences. They give a home, office, and business an exquisite look while adding to the decor of a blank wall.
Watercolors generally offer a sparkle of light when the colors of paint shine through it. It almost seems to blend with all colors of paper -creating an illusion of transparency.
Frequently Asked Questions
q: What tools will be most useful?
There are supplies you will need for the whole process. The list is endless, but the major ones you need are as follows: the watercolor paint itself, palettes, brushes, drawing board, pencil for sketching, watercolor paper, water container, watercolor pencils (if needed), an easel, an apron, paper towels, and fingerless gloves.
q: Can colors be done on canvas instead of regular paper?
It is advisable that you use a watercolor canvas instead of the normal style. The use of a canvas is a relatively new option in the world of art. It is the perfect tool for artists who are passionate about experiencing the touch and feel of working on them. They are available in different forms such as boards, pads and stretched styles.
Furthermore, to get the best experience, ensure that you first test your technique on paper before transferring it onto the canvas. The advantage of using canvases over paper is that with the canvas, you can directly hang your painting on the wall when you are finished. There is no need for a frame versus when you are working with paper.
q: Do they last long?
As time goes by, the pigment of the paint is separated from its active ingredient and the binding agent. The binding agent is popularly known as Arabic gum that comes from Acacia tress. When this gum is separated from the pigment of the paint, the tubes become really hard.
Most people have the notion that water paint does not go bad. This is far from the truth. After much time, the gum will eventually split and the process is irreparable. However, the average shelf life is about 2-3 years, depending on the quality of binding agent and the active ingredient used. In some cases, it could last up to 10-15 years if you rehydrate it.
q: How can you distinguish between quality and non-quality brands?
The permanency will depend on the quality of the paint chosen. If the color used in making it is a permanent color, you have selected a high-quality brand of paint. This type of paint will not change in texture or color when exposed to air.
On the other hand, if the pigments used changes sporadically once they are exposed, you have chosen a cheaper brand of paint. In a nut shell, everything depends on the quality of the pigment.
q: What is the average time a person spends painting?
When it comes to saying the exact amount of time spent to complete the whole process, so many factors come to play. But on average, it will take a range of 1-6 weeks depending on the circumstance and factors in play. Difficult and complex paintings can even take longer time and even months as the case may be.
q: Is it advisable to frame them under glass?
You get the best out of the colors when you frame them under glass. When done on paper, they deteriorate faster when left in the open. Glass is best for protecting your work from moisture and dust.
Paper does not offer a water-resistant coating nor does it protect your artwork from dust. This is the reason why most artists steer from leaving their artwork out in the open and opt for glass for framing them instead.