When it come to artwork and painting, your tools and materials are as important as your technique. Acrylic painting demands a wide variety of different brushes in order for you to produce quality work.
Acrylic vs Oil Paint Brushes
Brushes used for acrylic paints and oil paints are the same. The difference comes in the paint itself, and there are a few key differences.
What To Look For In a Quality Brush Brand
It can be quite daunting when you look at the range that is available. In the following few paragraphs, we will take you through a few of the basic things you will need to know before selecting a paintbrush or a set of paintbrushes so that you can select the best acrylic brushes.
Brush Tip Shape
There are a number of different tip shapes available, all designed for different effects and styles of painting. The most popular brush tips are flat, round, filbert, fan, angle, mop and rigger. These will enable you to experiment with a range of strokes and textures.
Flat and round are the two you will use most often but the others will enable you to give much more depth and variety as you paint.
Paintbrush bristles are made from a variety of materials including mink (commercially called sable) as well as squirrel fur. These days, the majority of brushes are makes of quality synthetic materials, mostly nylon.
The best brushes for acrylic paint are nylon bristles. They are durable and economical. The added bonus is that they are more eco-friendly.
There are two factors to consider with regards to paintbrush size.
You will need a variety of sized brushes for your work. The larger brushes are used for background and large areas, smaller brushes for fine detail and medium sizes for general work.
There is no universal brush size so a 10, for example, of one brand may differ from a 10 for another brand. The higher the number, the larger the bristle size.
The other aspect of brush size is handle length. Again you will need a bit of variety. Short handles are ideal for flat painting as well as fine detail painting whereas longer handles are better suited to painting at an easel.
It is always a good idea to buy brushes in a set, especially for beginners but even more advanced artists will benefit from buying them in this way. You will get a good selection of brushes in a variety of sizes and tip shapes.
As your painting and style develop, you will come to understand them better and you can always expand your collection as you go.
We have tested a number of brushes for acrylic painting as well as read hundreds of consumer reviews and feedback to come up with the following list of best paint brushes for acrylic painting.
5 Best Acrylic Paint Brushes Reviewed
1. Artify 13 Pcs Paint Brush Set
- EIGHT TYPES OF BRUSHES - Use a wide variety...
- ANTI-SHEDDING HAIRS - Made from soft,...
- CARRY CASE WITH POP-UP STAND - More than just...
- HANDMADE BRUSH HANDLES - Each brush handle is...
This great set of acrylic paint brushes comes with a convenient pop-up stand carrying case that will keep your brushes safe and easy to access. It also includes a free palette knife as well as a sponge, making it ideal for acrylic painting.
The sets are available in a variety of colors and include eight different brush types giving you a fantastic choice of brush shape as well as size.
Tip shapes include flat, angular, liner, filbert, dagger, fan and round. This will allow you explore a variety of techniques and styles from large coats to fine details work.
Bristles are made of quality nylon and are anti-shedding, meaning no unsightly bristles left behind in your work. The bristles are durable and easy to clean. The brush handles are handcrafted using quality natural materials.
2. Virtuoso 15-Piece Fine Paintbrushes
- IN YOUR PAINT BRUSH SET: 15 miniature artist...
- PREMIUM DESIGN FEATURES: Virtuous Arts mini...
- AN AMAZINGLY VERSATILE PAINTBRUSH SET:...
- THE BEST BRUSH KIT FOR THE FLAWLESS EXECUTION...
The Virtuoso set is a big seller and very highly rated by consumers. These handmade brushes are amongst the best brushes for acrylic paint.
The set consists of 15 miniature artist paint brushes, designed for fine detailing. They are purposely crafted with thicker, shorter handles. The size and design will give you perfect control for intricate work.
You will get a variety of sizes of rounds, flats and liners in the set. They provide excellent balance and grip. All the brushes feature unique anti-shedding bristle technology for a perfect, hassle free finish.
The durable bristles are housed in perfectly crimped ferrules. A great testament to the quality of the product is Virtuoso offer a lifetime replacement guarantee.
3. Dainayw Art Paint Brush Set
This set of 12 Nylon Hair Brushes come well recommended and is ideal for acrylic painting.
The set comes in a choice of three colors with tips shapes including rounds, fan, flat and cant, all in a number of sizes allowing for great versatility.
The set is suitable for students, beginners as well as professional artists.
Dainayw have used a special blend of top-quality synthetic bristles that are easy to clean, non-toxic and durable.
4. Art Lost Detail Paint Brush Taklon Hair
- Miniature brush set of 16 futures liner, spot...
- Scaled down for detail work-even nail art
- Ideal with acrylic, gouache, watercolor,...
- White taklon synthetic bristles for superb...
This set of 16 handmade brushes comes in a variety of tips and sizes, designed for fine, detail work including nail art.
They are perfect for precision acrylic painting.
The white taklon synthetic bristles allow for perfect brush control and the brushes use seamless nickel-plated ferrules, making them highly durable.
5. Royal Brush Manufacturing Royal and Langnickel Zip N' Close 12-Piece Brush Set
- 12 piece set in Zip N' Close pouch
- Standard length, kiln-dried wood handles with...
- This set contains medium gold taklon standard...
- Best suited for use with acrylics,...
Another highly rated set offers some of the best brushes for acrylic paint. It comes with a convenient Zip N' Close pouch.
Brush handles are standard length, kiln-dried wood handles incorporating seamless aluminium ferrules.
Styles include filberts, angular, flats and rounds in a range of sizes.
Release or refine your inner artist with anyone of these quality acrylic paintbrush sets. They are all highly rated and offer a good selection of paintbrush types allowing you to let your creativity flow and produce beautiful works of art or touch up anything around your home.
Other Paint Brush Types
A little home maintenance can be the perfect way to spend a lazy Sunday afternoon – fixing the garden fence, up-cycling some scrappy furniture you found at the tip or doing up the kid’s rooms are good ways to keep yourself busy.
Lucky for you, I’ve had plenty of experience when it comes to painting and found the best paint brush for every type of DIY you’ll ever attempt.
Painting alone can be a glorious, meditative-like way to soothe the mind (could be the fumes, though, so crack open a window), but painting with loved ones or the kids can also be a fun experience. I've compiled my top five brushes for every DIY paint-job around the home...
Best Paint Brush For Fences
Purdy XL Series Glide
- 3", xl-glide, angle Sash & trim Brush, Tynex...
- Adds extra shine to your product
- Manufactured in United States
- Use with all paints
‘Good fences make good neighbors’. Well, with this lovely little number, you’ll be the best neighbor around! This brush is a steal at just over $10 and is perfect for use both indoors and outdoors.
Rest assured that you’ll be safe painting outside, as this angled brush is specifically-manufactured to hold its own during hot, humid weather.
For use with a variety of different paint types, this Purdy paint brush is ideal for wooden fences and garden sheds alike.
We recommend going for this size (the ‘XL’) if you’re giving the fence a new lease of life – maximum coverage without all the wrist-ache!
Best Paint Brush For Cabinets
Brossum 2-in-1 Round
- ✔ (2-IN-1) CHALK & WAX BRUSH - Works with...
- ✔ LOW SHEDDING DESIGN - Guaranteed maximum...
- ✔ AFFORDABLE - Half the price of expensive...
- ✔ REDUCE PAINTING & CLEANING TIME - 2in...
Now, I’m a huge fan of ‘up-cycling’ – the art of giving old furniture a new life! This is a great way to save money and give character to your home.
Painting cabinets, old or new, requires the right kind of brush, which is why I love this one from Brossum. Not only does it look fancy, it works hard, as should all good paint brushes.
Perfect for furniture maintenance due to its no-shedding quality, this brush can be used on pretty much ever cabinet type – worry not if your wood is waxed, so to speak, this brush can glaze over a whole variety of textures without a problem.
Best Paint Brush For Houses
Stanley Premium Paint Kit
- EASY AND EFFICIENT: STANLEY Paint Roller...
- THE BEST IN BRUSHES: STANLEY Paint Brushes...
- ALL IN ONE SET: STANLEY paint kits are...
- PERFORMANCE IN ACTIONS: Since 1843, we’ve...
Whether you’ve just moved into a new home or are re-decorating, painting your house can seem like a daunting task. So many walls, so little time!
This roller set from Stanley (pictured left) is here to make all that stress go away. Fully-equipped with its own roller tray, this brush set is perfect for painting the walls in your home.
The roller brushes are super secure, meaning that you don’t have to worry when you’re painting the ceiling!
Roller brushes are a great way to paint large areas of walls, especially when they come with a long handle, as you get even coverage and no drips!
If you're attacking your whole home with new colors, these are the best paint brushes for the job.
If you’d rather buy just the one brush, make it this one from Wooster. Wide enough to give you the coverage you need whilst painting walls, this brush is designed to hold on to its bristles and will leave your walls with a lovely, smooth finish.
Handles are more important than you’d initially think, which is why I love this brush – it’s easy to grip and gives you ultimate control, whatever angle you’re painting at.
This product is long-lasting and easy to clean, meaning you can keep it in your DIY kit for years.. At just over $5, this brush is my favorite bargain buy!
Best Paint Brush For Furniture
Presa Premium Paint Brushes
- PREMIUM: Increase your productivity with...
- MORE PAINT: Blending the finest SRT filaments...
- SMOOTH: The premium filaments provide a...
- HEAVY-DUTY: Can withstand even the most...
I’m a sucker for a set, which is why this little kit from Presa made it to my top five! These brushes have been engineered to hold more paint that your standard paint brush, meaning that you’re wasting less and painting more.
The variety of brushes you’re offered in this set means that you can paint pretty much any furniture around the home.
Big, thick brushes are great for larger pieces, while the angled brush is perfect for cutting in on smaller, finer pieces of furniture. These brushes work well with any paint type and hold their bristles even while painting more abrasive textures.
What To Look For In a Paint Brush Cover
As a painter, you know the importance of keeping your paint brushes in good condition. Generally, a painter must clean brushes each day after a job. You go through a lengthy cleaning process to clean the bristles and store the brushes properly.
When you store the brushes, the bristles need to stay close and tight. You do not want your brushes to dry out with their bristles splayed. If bristles flair out, then you cannot paint a straight cut, or it is possible that you cannot use the brush again after one or two uses.
A paint brush cover that is simple and saves you time is an ideal addition. Likwid Concepts has invented a product that painters are raving about. The product is the Paint Brush Cover (10 Pack). I want to give you more information about this awesome product.
Best Paint Brush Cover
The most valuable tools for a painter are your paintbrushes. You want the brushes to last because poor care can be costly. You do not want to destroy the bristles or let them dry out when you need to take a break or the workday is over.
Normally, at the end of the day, its time to clean your brushes and cover them. The meticulous cleaning and washing of the brushes takes up time. The makeshift covers of plastic wrap or plastic bags do not work as well as you would like.
You need a quality cover for your paint brushes to keep them wet and to keep the bristles in good condition for your next days work or home painting job.
If you are looking for a paintbrush cover that protects the brushes, is simple and saves you time then look no further. This Likwid Concepts product is the best plastic paint brush cover on the market.
The Paint Brush Cover (10 pack). Professional Painting Brush Holder / Case
Likwid Concepts created a product that fits the needs of professional painters and the average homeowner who want to paint a room, piece of furniture or their home.
These covers were invented by painters who saw a need for a better way to protect paint brushes. The way that the product works is it provides an airtight seal.
You can put a wet brush, even with paint into the plastic cover. The cover protects the bristles from damage and keeps their shape.
Likwid Concepts claims that the covers will keep the brushes wet up to six weeks in certain conditions. You should not store them in direct sunlight or extreme heated areas. Store in an upright position and at room temperature.
You are probably wondering how do the brushes stay wet while in the cover. You must generously wet the brushes with paint before you store them. Place your brushes into the cover and snap it closed.
Once closed, it is airtight and inside the case is a high level of humidity. This humidity keeps the brushes fresh and moist. It is important that you keep the lid closed tight. Fight the urge to continuously open the lid to see if it is working. The more you open the cover, the quicker the brushes will dry out.
The brush covers holds 1” to 3” brushes. These covers can be used to store brushes used with water-based, latex or oil-based paint. Also, brushes used with lacquer or stains can be stored in the covers. Review the manufacturer’s recommendations on how to properly store your brushes based on the type of paint used.
Selecting the Right Size Acrylic Brush
One of the most important factors is the brush size. This not only includes the brush head but the handle as well. If you have larger hands, you should choose a brush handle that is longer and fits better in your hand.
When it comes to tip selection, you need the right size for the job at hand. Because acrylics do dry so fast, you can layer them and build out on them without worrying that they will sag. You can even paint with a scraper if you prefer. However, the brush tips will determine how thick of a paint you can lay on the canvas, or how wide of a stroke you can make.
Fan tips are perfect for broader strokes and larger coverage, while thin tips make great lines and drastic edges. You shouldn’t have to choose when making a purchase, though. The best brushes for acrylic paint will come in a nice set with a variety of tip shapes and sizes for you to choose from when the time comes.
Pros and Cons of Paint Brush Covers
Not all paint brush covers get great reviews. This however, is a product that has received top ratings and is quoted as being ‘simple to use’ and a ‘very cool invention’. Many people say that it is a time saver from washing brushes at the end of each day.
Customers like the design and the durable, plastic covers to safely store paintbrushes. Both professional painters and average users of the covers are grateful for a much needed product.
Currently, there are no similar products on the market. A couple of customers did not like parts of the packaging of the product, but like the concept and use of the covers. Overall the reviews are very positive.
I highly recommend, Likwid Concepts, The Paint Brush Cover. If you are looking for a simple way to save or take care of your paint brushes, this is a great product to buy.
Acrylic Paint Brush Care & Maintenance
The good news is that acrylic paint is water-based. This minimizes your care and maintenance routine to keep your brushes looking and performing their best.
All you really need is lukewarm water. Run the water over the brushes, using your fingers to clean the handle and insert area. Then pinch the bristles between your finger to remove excess paint. If you want to swirl the brush tips in a glass of water until the bristles don’t leave a trace of paint, you have that option as well.
Once the brush is clean, you should pinch the bristles between your fingers and a clean, dry cloth. Don’t pinch too hard, but enough to soak up excess water. Allow the paintbrushes to dry, tips up, and they will maintain their shape and composure.
Storing Your Brushes
The best way to store your paint brushes is to allow them to dry completely and then let gravity help.
Once the brushes are dry, you can place them back in the container they came in if it has tip support. You can also lay them flat to help protect the tips from drooping. If all else fails, hang them upside down, so the bristles don’t try to fight gravity. Using a clothes line and clothes pins works, if your handles don’t have hanging holes in the ends.
Well, that’s pretty much your lot! Finding the best paint brushes for whatever DIY job you’re working on can be pretty tricky – huge aisles of brushes in every hardware store often leave me feeling intimidated and uninspired. Oh, and remember to look after your brushes with a paint brush cover.
The internet is rapidly becoming my favourite way to check out the competition and find the best product for whatever project I'm working on.
My guide to the best paint brushes shows you that it’s not that hard to find what you need, despite the pressure you may feel when you ask for help in a store!
Enjoy your home-maintenance projects, just remember to leave something chilling in the fridge – we all know that DIY can rapidly turn into ‘Drink It (all) Yourself’!