Five Brushes Every Acrylic Painter Should Own

With thousands of paint brush options on the market, it can be difficult to know which ones you actually need. That's why we created a guide to make shopping for different types of brushes a little easier. These are our top five acrylic paint brushes you should consider, whether you're a budding artist or experienced painter.

Soft-Grip round brush in various sizes photo

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Round Brush

Available in seven sizes, this round brush helps you add precise detail to your artwork. Thanks to its short handle and a soft rubber grip, this brush provides both comfort and control while painting. It's also excellent for outlining, filling small areas, and painting lines with various widths, depending on how you apply pressure to the brush. Tip: For thin lines, apply paint to the tip only; for thicker lines, dip paint farther down the brush. ($3;

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Set of five flat acrylic paint brushes photo

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Flat Brush

A flat brush is ideal for wide coverage. You'll use this brush to fill spaces, create bold strokes, and straighten edges. You'll want a variety of sizes depending on your project, which is exactly what this acrylic paint brush set provides. The bundle includes five natural-hair paint brushes, and you can use them with either acrylic or watercolor paints. ($19;

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Princeton angle acrylic brush photo

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Angular Flat Brush

This angle shader brush combines the benefits of natural-hair and synthetic-fiber brushes in the form of one advanced design. Each hair replicates the flags on a natural bristle, allowing it to hold more paint, but the synthetic bristles provide a smoother application than a natural-fiber paint brush. It's the best tool for shading and highlighting as it reaches small areas (like corners) and creates curved strokes, unlike the flat or round options. ($8;

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Zen long-handle filbert brush photo

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Filbert Brush

If you enjoy painting florals, this filbert brush is an absolute must. Its soft, round edges are perfect for blending petals (among other shapes) and creating precise strokes. It comes in sizes 1 through 12—the low end is ideal for fine detail and the upper end applies greater coverage. We suggest 8 for a balanced option that gives you a little bit of both, but you might want to pick up a couple of different sizes depending on your artistic vision. (from $4;

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Princeton acrylic fan brush photo

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Fan Brush

A fan brush is the best tool for adding texture and dimension to your work. Use it to create a fluffy cloud, add depth to the ocean, or create life-like hair on a self-portrait. This acrylic fan brush features a long handle and super-soft grip for comfortable, precise painting. ($22;

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10-piece set of acrylic paint brushes photo

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Bonus: Acrylic Paint Brush Set

Beginning painters may prefer a bundle, and this acrylic paint brush set has hundreds of rave reviews. Each brush features a soft wooden handle and can be used for acrylics, watercolor, nail, ceramic, and other painting projects. Choose from the 10-, 12-, or 15-brush set (all contain the five must-have brushes on our list) and unleash your creativity. (from $6;

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