9 Best Acrylic Paint Sets in 2024

best acrylic paint sets

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Overwhelmed by the variety of acrylic paint sets available? Not sure where to start looking for the best acrylic paint for your current needs?

No need to look anywhere else!

Today, we’ll be breaking down all the information on the Top 9 Acrylic Paint Sets available in the market:

Stick around until the end and you’ll get some extra important info on how to pick an acrylic paint set in a rigorous and systematic way~!

Our Top 5 Picks

Program

Strength

Product Details

#1. Golden Artist Colors

golden artist colors

Best Overall Acrylic Paint Set

  • Professional paints made of high-quality pigments that are rich and vibrant — perfect for mixing beautiful shades when painting.
  • GOLDEN produces a lot of 100% compatible acrylic mediums that can make your painting process more convenient and colorful.
  • Artist-graded paint that has a smooth, buttery consistency — making it easy-to-mix and apply onto papers and canvas.

#2: Liquitex Heavy Body Acrylic

liquitex heavy body acrylic

Best for Professionals

  • Liquitex’s Heavy Body Acrylics are thick, rich, and highly-pigmented — making them easy to apply and mix.
  • The paints dry fast and dry flexibly, resulting in an even finish without any chalky-quality or streakiness — no need to worry about cracking!
  • Great for acrylic painting with texture — giving you a whole new dimension to work on.

#3: Winsor & Newton Galeria

winsor & newton galeria

Best for Students

  • Acrylic paint set made of high-quality ingredients that is best for beginners who want to try out acrylic painting but don’t want to skimp on quality!
  • The price of the paints are highly affordable — requiring very little investement for you to test the waters.
  • High-viscosity for easy-mixing when painting.

#4: Golden Fluid Acrylic

golden fluid acrylic

Best Fluid Acrylics

  • Acrylic paint with the best flow, allowing you to apply even glazes and stains easily.
  • The colors are very rich, they won’t lose out on vibrancy, so you can mix colors without worries!
  • Great paints for those who want to experience a unique acrylic painting experience — for example, the popular “Acrylic Pouring Technique”.

#5: Liquitex BASICS

liquitex basics

Best in Value

  • Best acrylics for artists on a budget! A BIG set that you can buy at a cheap and affordable price.
  • Wide variety of colors — so you no longer have to restrain yourself with a limited palette.
  • Solid tinting strength, which makes it very easy for you to mix on the palette.

#1 Best Overall: Golden Artist Colors

golden artist colors

Overall Rating: 5/5

5/5

Specifications

Pricing

Quality: Professional

Key Features:

  • Heavy Body paint with a thick, buttery consistency.
  • No noticeable color shifting when dried.
  • Over 130+ color shades to choose from.

Set Details: 12 colors in 22ml Tubes

Set Price: $49.97

Price Per Tube: $4.16 per tube

When it comes to artist-grade paints that are suitable for both beginners and professionals, you can’t go wrong with Golden’s Artist Colors Heavy Body Mixing Set.

The set comes with warm and cool yellows, reds, blues, and greens. PLUS, a selection of four other useful mixing colors (e.g., titanium white, raw umber, carbon black, etc.).

All in all, it’s a very comprehensive acrylic paint mixing set! Yes, it might be a little pricey. But a little goes a long way! The tubes for this set are large and the pigment quality is high, so it should last you quite a bit!

Another benefit of choosing Golden’s Heavy Body Acrylic paints is that the GOLDEN brand is very heavily involved in the Acrylic Paint industry. They produce a lot of supporting products like acrylic paint extenders, glazing liquid, etc. that you can use without worrying about formula incompatibility.

Golden Artist Colors Pros and Cons

Pros

  • Professional-grade paints
  • Paint is easy to mix and has a buttery, smooth consistency
  • High-quality acrylic paint made of high-quality pigments

Cons

  • More expensive than other paint sets

#2 Best for Professionals: Liquitex Heavy Body Acrylic

liquitex heavy body acrylic

Overall Rating: 4.9/5

4.9/5

Specifications

Pricing

Quality: Professional

Key Features:

  • Thick, rich consistency.
  • Fast-drying.
  • Flexible when dried.

Set Details: 12 colors in 59ml tubes

Set Price: $70.76

Price Per Tube: $5.89 per tube

If you’re a professional in acrylic painting and you’re just looking to change things up by trying out a new acrylic paint set, then the Liquitex Heavy Body Acrylic paints are the one to bet on. In terms of quality, it’s no worse than the ‘best acrylic paint’ on this list.

The only reason why we didn’t choose Liquitex instead of GOLDEN for the best paint set is because its introductory set is not the most comprehensive for mixing shades.

Basically, it included secondary colors and didn’t provide primary colors in warm and cool shades like GOLDEN. So, in terms of mixing, it’s incomplete. You’ll have to buy those shades separately. This kind of thing, as a professional, you probably have those shades lying around, so it doesn’t matter. But if you’re a beginner painter new to acrylic paints? It’s extra trouble.

Liquitex Heavy Body Acrylic Pros and Cons

Pros

  • Professional-grade, heavy-body acrylics that are super light-fast
  • Colors dry evenly and flexibly (not easy to crack)
  • Very useful for textured or impasto work

Cons

  • The Liquitex heavy body set’s color range is not comprehensive
  • More expensive than other alternatives

#3 Best for Students: Winsor & Newton Galeria

winsor & newton galeria

Overall Rating: 4.8/5

4.8/5

Specifications

Pricing

Quality: Student

Key Features:

  • Student-grade paints with a professional feel.
  • Rich and vibrant colors.
  • Smooth consistency

Set Details: 10 colors in 20 ml tubes

Set Price: $18.23

Price Per Tube: $1.82 per tube

If you’re looking for acrylic paint that is on the cheaper side, you can consider the Winsor & Newton Galeria Acrylic paint set first!

The quality is very HIGH for a student-grade paint set of acrylics. It’s a good choice if you want to test paints extensively, there’s no pressure when using it since the tube price is very affordable. You also don’t have to worry about the experience being too different from using professional, artist-grade paint.

The consistency of the paint is thick and rich. The surface finish is also very even when dried. Its only shortcoming is that the colors are not as opaque as higher-grade paint.

Winsor & Newton Galeria Pros and Cons

Pros

  • Student-grade paint made of high-quality pigments and ingredients
  • It can be considered heavy body paint — which is good at retaining brushstrokes
  • The colors are rich and vibrant

Cons

  • Opacity is rather weak
  • The introductory set is not comprehensive in terms of mixing color shades

#4 Best Fluid Acrylics: Golden Fluid Acrylic Paints

golden fluid acrylic paints

Overall Rating: 4.7/5

4.7/5

Specifications

Pricing

Quality: Professional

Key Features:

  • Super High-Viscosity, comparable to inks and watercolor paint.
  • Richly-pigmented.
  • Best for glazing and staining.

Set Details: 10 colors in 30ml bottles

Set Price: $49.00

Price Per Bottle: $4.9 per bottle

If you’re not a fan of thick and textured painting, don’t worry! There are always fluid paints available, of which, GOLDEN’s Fluid Acrylics are the most famous.

It’s the right acrylic paint to choose if you’re transitioning from watercolors or inks. Outside of being a little thicker and being more opaque, the flow and viscosity are about the same. So you won’t have to suffer too much from getting used to a completely different medium.

Of course, Golden’s Fluid Acrylics have more benefits than that! For example, a lot of artists choose it for the early stages of the painting process — the viscosity makes it easier to apply evenly as underpainting or as a glaze.

Golden Fluid Acrylics Pros and Cons

Pros

  • High-viscosity, making it very useful for glazing
  • Consistency similar to inks and watercolor paint
  • Colors are rich and vibrant

Cons

  • Not as translucent as watercolors
  • Quite pricey, and easy-to-use-up

#5 Best in Value: Liquitex BASICS

liquitex basics

Overall Rating: 4.5/5

4.5/5

Specifications

Pricing

Quality: Student

Key Features:

  • Comprehensive set of colors (primary colors and secondary colors like cerulean blue, magenta, etc.).
  • EXTRA budget-friendly.
  • Dries quickly and flexibly.

Set Details: 48 colors in 22ml tubes

Set Price: $52.30

Price Per Tube: $1.08 per tube

Want something easier on the budget? Well, Liquitex BASICS is just right. Despite it being a student-grade paint, it can be said that there is NO huge difference between it and some of the acrylics being sold as ‘artist-grade’ in the market.

It’s true that there’s less pigment because of the ceramic beads mixed in as additives, but the colors are still rich and vibrant (as can be seen in the image below). It also dries flexibly, which is different from other student-grade paints out there — which tend to crack when dry.

The best thing about choosing Liquitex BASICS is that you can get more for less. Beautiful secondary colors like brilliant purple, cerulean blue, bright aqua green, silver, gold, etc. are included in the set — which you can’t get in many other sets for acrylics out there.

Liquitex BASICS Pros and Cons

Pros

  • Cheap and affordable art supplies suitable for beginners
  • Liquitex heavy body acrylics with buttery consistency, suitable for textured paintings
  • Glossy, satin finish suitable for different surfaces (e.g., canvas, board, metal, ceramics, etc.)

Cons

  • Lower pigment quality because of additives
  • Not as lightfast as other options

#6 Winsor & Newton Artists’ Acrylic Color

winsor & newton artists' acrylic color

Overall Rating: 4.5/5

4.5/5

Specifications

Pricing

Quality: Professional

Key Features:

  • Professional-grade acrylic paint made of high-quality ingredients for permanent color.
  • Thick, buttery consistency.
  • Retains brushstrokes well.

Set Details: 12 colors in 20ml tubes

Set Price: $46.19

Price Per Tube: $3.84 per tube

Next, we have another product recommendation from the Winsor & Newton brand. More specifically, we recommend the Winsor & Newton 12-Color Professional Acrylic set, which has 6 primary colors perfect for mixing and another 6 accompanying secondary shades for convenience and tinting.

Compared to Winsor & Newton’s Galeria set, the Professional Acrylic paint set is more suitable for seasoned artists because of its higher quality and higher pricing. What distinguishes it from other paints of the same grade is its improved ability to retain brush strokes — as heavy body paint, it’s perfect for creating texture and painting in impasto.

Winsor & Newton Artists’ Acrylic Color Pros and Cons

Pros

  • Made of high-quality pigment and ingredients
  • Dries flexibly, making it suitable for all kinds of surfaces (e.g., canvas, board, metal, etc.)
  • Heavy body paint is perfect for creating texture.

Cons

  • Not as cost-effective as other options.

#7 Sennelier Artists Acrylic Set

sennelier artists acrylic set

Overall Rating: 4.4/5

4.4/5

Specifications

Pricing

Quality: Professional

Key Features:

  • Made of high-quality pigment with high-purity
  • Low-odor, crack-resistant and water resistant
  • Soft consistency and satin finish

Set Details: 10 colors in 21ml tubes

Set Price: $76.95

Price Per Tube: $7.69 per tube

Next, let’s talk about a product from a favorite brand of artists in Europe. It’s called the Senellier Acrylique Heavy Body Acrylic set. It’s of extra-fine quality, made of hand-selected pigment, and formulated to be quick-drying, crack-resistant, and water-resistant.

In terms of quality, it’s true that there are not many out there that are better than Sennelier’s Acrylique set! However, the pricing very much reflects the quality of the paint. It’s very expensive! And so, considering that the differences between it and other artist-grade acrylics are not huge, it all comes down to personal preference as to whether you choose it or not.

Sennelier Artists Acrylic Set Pros and Cons

Pros

  • High-quality paints of extra-fine quality pigment and acrylic polymer
  • Creamy consistency — great for blending

Cons

  • Highly expensive paint set

#8 Pebeo Studio Acrylics

pebeo studio acrylics

Overall Rating: 4.4/5

4.4/5

Specifications

Pricing

Quality: Intermediate

Key Features:

  • Primary color kit with 3 primary color shades and white and black for tinting
  • Between student and professional-grade
  • Matte-satiny finish

Set Details: 5 colors in 100ml tubes

Set Price: $20.99

Price Per Tube: $4.19 per tube

Do you like limited palettes? Then, consider Pebeo’s High-Viscosity Studio acrylic paint pack of 5 colors. It comes in 3 primary shades and titanium white and black.

It’s the perfect paint set for experimentation, especially since the paint tubes are EXTRA large and the quality of the paint is between student and professional!

Pebeo Studio Acrylics Pros and Cons

Pros

  • Small set, perfect for limited palette exercises
  • 5-color comprehensive mixing paint set
  • EXTRA large tubes

Cons

  •   Quality and price are between student-and-professional grade

#9 Turner Acryl Gouache

turner acryl gouache

Overall Rating: 4.3/5

4.3/5

Specifications

Pricing

Quality: Professional

Key Features:

  • Hybrid paint of gouache and acrylic
  • High-opacity and matte-finish
  • Velvety consistency

Set Details: 12 colors in 20ml tubes

Set Price: $27.70

Price Per Tube: $2.30 per tube

Last but not least is Turner’s Acryl Gouache set. On our list of the best acrylic paint sets, it’s the only hybrid paint — a paint that is a cross between acrylic and gouache.

Acryl Gouache is water soluble like Guache and has the same matte finish. Its drying time is also slower than most acrylic paint. BUT, Acryl Gouache is still considered permanent color paint — which means that it dries permanently.

Turner Acryl Gouache Pros and Cons

Pros

  • Unique velvety, matte-finish
  • Very versatile, can be used on wood, acrylic sheeting, cloth, iron, etc.
  • Water-soluble out of the tube but water-resistant when dried.

Cons

  • Not very light-fast
  • The colors are very opaque

How to Choose the Best Acrylic Sets?

Now that we’ve gone over the best acrylic paints in the market, let’s talk about How to Choose the Right Acrylic Paint for YOUR needs!

For this, we’ve broken down everything you need to know below:

Student-Grade vs Artist-Grade

First, let’s compare the difference between student-grade and artist-grade paints. Is there really such a huge difference? Well, let’s break it down:

Student-Grade

Cheaper because they correspondingly use cheaper ingredients, less pigment, and contain more binders and additives.

Most student paints use hues (mixtures of pigments) instead of pure pigment — which makes it more likely for muddy colors to occur when mixing. Because of this, it’s more suitable for beginners starting out or students who paint in large amounts for practice.

Artist-Grade

More expensive because it has higher pigment content — offering more vibrant colors.

Also has fewer additives and extenders, whilst maintaining a smooth, workable consistency and predictable drying time. Put briefly, it’s high-quality paints for artists who want to paint more serious works or professionals who want to sell their work.

Types of Acrylic Paint

Once you get past the “student vs artist” quality hurdle, the next one to cross is to decide what type of acrylic paint is more suitable for your style of painting:

  • Heavy Body Acrylic: Classic acrylic type of paint. Very similar to oil paints in consistency — thick and rich, just right for adding texture, but also, smooth and buttery, which is pleasant to mix and very easy to apply onto a surface.
  • Soft Body Acrylic: Softer and more cream-like than heavy body acrylics, very easy to spread — which makes it popular with artists who like to use “pouring techniques”.
  • Fluid Acrylics: Also called, acrylic ink or high-flow acrylic paints. The consistency is even more fluid than soft-body paints, and is also popular for pouring techniques, air-brush techniques, calligraphy, etc. What separates it from other acrylics, however, is the brightness and vividness of the color and the smooth, lustrous finish.
  • Acrylic Gouache: Creamy consistency. Most popular with those who prefer paintings with a “matte-finish.” You can see our recommendation for this type of acrylic, “Turners Acryl Gouache”, in action in this vlog by @EmilyHughes.

Of course, you’re not limited to just one type or another. You can pick up several for fun or for convenience (e.g., soft body paints for underpainting and heavy body paints for upper layers).

Other Things to Consider When Picking Acrylic Paint

Other things you might want to consider when picking and choosing are as follows:

  • Pigment Quality: The purer the pigment content, the better for mixing shades. As mentioned, professional-grade paints have higher and purer pigment content and lower-quality paints have less pigments and more hues.
  • Light-Fastness: If you want to sell your acrylic paintings, you should pick paints that are more light-fast — the more light-fast, the more permanent the color. You can check the light-fastness of paints on the paint tubes (the ratings range from I to V, with “I” being excellent light-fastness and “V” being very poor).
  • Viscosity: Do you prefer thick paint or thin paint? Thicker paints are best for impasto techniques and thinner paints are best for pouring techniques!
  • Finish: Do you want a glossy, satiny finish to your painting? Or do you prefer the opposite and want a velvety, matte finish? Most acrylics are glossy or satiny, but there are also those, like Pebeo Studio, that are somewhat matte when dried.
  • Opacity: How translucent or opaque do you want your paints to be? To give an example, acrylic gouache is known for being opaque whilst more viscous paints are known for being more translucent.

Final Thoughts:

There we go! Have you found your favorite acrylic set yet?

If you’re still struggling with indecision, we strongly recommend GOLDEN’s Heavy Body Acrylics. The quality is excellent, the price is moderate, and the set was comprehensively set up to make it so you’ll never need any other set of acrylic paints!

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