best acrylic paint brushes for beginners

The Best Acrylic Paint Brushes for Beginners and Professionals

Are you looking for the best acrylic paint brushes for beginners and professionals? This article will help you find the best brushes for your needs. We will discuss different brush types and sizes, and where to buy them. So whether you are just starting or are looking for an upgrade, read on for the best acrylic paint brushes! We have a lot to talk about, so let’s get started.

The best acrylic brushes

Below you will find our top picks for the best brushes on the market for beginners and professionals. The good news is you don’t need to spend a fortunate to purchase either option. I personally use Catalyst for most of my work and occasionally break out Silver ruby satin whenever I’m feeling special. Anyhow, have a look at the brushes and browse the sets, and recommended types as you scroll down.

Best acrylic paint brushes
Best acrylic paint brushes

Princeton Catalyst Polytips

Best Beginner Brushes

Princeton Catalyst Polytips are hands down the best paint brushes money can buy for beginners. Another one of Princeton’s breakthroughs that advances the science of synthetic fiber technology. For the first time, the tip of each individual fiber has been split to replicate the natural flags on the finest natural bristle. These paintbrushes are super stiff yet still extremely responsive.

Designed for use with medium to heavy-body acrylics and oil paints, Catalyst Brushes push even heavy gel mediums with assurance. And unlike natural hog bristle, which can be rendered useless when water-soaked, Catalyst Brushes have real integrity in water.

Silver Ruby Satin, Best professional acrylic brushes

Silver Ruby Satin

Best Pro Brushes

Silver ruby satin are outstanding pro brushes. Once you have a little experience under your belt, you may want to invest in some higher-quality brushes. Here are the types of brushes that professionals typically use:

  • Angular shader brushes: These brushes are best for adding highlights and shadows to your paintings.
  • Fan brushes: These are ideal for creating soft, airy strokes. Get a variety of sizes, too.
  • Filbert brushes: As we mentioned earlier, these brushes are perfect for creating curved lines and blending colors.

What are the exact brushes you need?

Here are the exact brushes and sizes you need! These will handle small and medium size paintings. Later on, as you become more experienced, try larger sizes since you may want to scale up to bigger canvases.

  • Flat #6, #12
  • Round #4, #8
  • Fan #4

Also, it’s good to have three of each brush size and types, except for the fan. Just get one of those until you decide whether you like using them, or not. By having three of each, you can use them for specific colors without have to clean them so often. If you did the math, that would be a total of 14 brushes.

Best acrylic paint brush sets

Now that you know the best individual brushes to buy, what about brush sets? Here is the top pick for both beginner brush set.

Best acrylic brush set for beginners
best acrylic brush set

Princeton Catalyst Polytip Set

Best for beginners

Here we are again! Fortunately, Princeton offers the Catalyst in sets. I would probably purchase two sets so I had two of each brush types and sizes. One set will do but you will probably find you need to clean them after every color. Having two, or more, will allow you to designate a brush for a specific color, or value. This way it makes the workflow much easier.

Silver ruby velvet brush set
best acrylic brush set

Silver Ruby Velvet Brushes

Best set for professionals

Silver Ruby also come in a set, so why not get a set. If you are in the market for high-quality professional brush sets, this is it! Silver delivers the goods with overspending.

What to look for in acrylic paintbrushes

With all the different acrylic paintbrush options, how do you pick the right ones? That’s a great question. A quality acrylic brush should have the following features:

  • Good point retention: This means that the brush will keep its shape and not fray after extended use.
  • Strong yet flexible bristles: The bristles should be able to hold up to heavy paint without breaking, but they should also be flexible so they can create a variety of strokes.
  • A comfortable handle: The handle should be comfortable to hold for long periods, and it should be the right size for your hand.

Now that you know what to look for in a quality brush, let’s talk about the best brush types and shapes to use.

There are five main types of brushes: flat, round, filbert, angular and fan. Each one has its unique purpose:

  • Flat brushes are best for painting large areas of flat color or for creating sharp edges.
  • Round brushes are best for blending and shaping the paint, as well as for adding detail.
  • Filbert brushes are best for creating soft, curved lines.
  • Angular brushes are similar to flats but have an angles tip making them ideal for tight corners.
  • Fan brush is probably one of the most underrated shapes, but can handle multiple tasks because of its irregular shape.

When it comes to choosing the right brush size, it all depends on the project you are working on.

However, a good starting point is to use brushes that are between one and two inches wide.

Natural versus synthetic bristles

Now that we’ve talked about the different brush types and sizes, let’s discuss whether you should buy natural or synthetic brushes.

  • Natural brushes are made from animal hair.
  • Synthetic brushes are made from man-made materials.

There are pros and cons to both:

  • Natural brushes are usually more expensive, but they tend to hold up better over time. They also have a softer feel, which some painters prefer.
  • Synthetic brushes are usually less expensive, but they don’t always hold their shape as well. However, they are a good option for beginner painters who are still experimenting with different techniques.


We hope this article has helped you understand the different types of acrylic paint brushes and which ones are best for beginners and professionals. With the right tools, you’ll be able to create beautiful paintings that will amaze your friends and family.

Happy painting!

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