How To Mix Airbrush Paint

What is the ratio of paint to thinner for spray gun?

4:1 is the airbrush thinner ratio for the spray gun. Remember, if you don’t have thinner, then paint as it is. But if you are using a spray gun, then you need to thin the pain, so that it will spread evenly without clogging the nozzle of the spray gun.

Can you use water to thin acrylic paint for airbrushing?

For thinning acrylic craft paint for airbrushing, simply mix a 1:1 ratio of water and acrylic paint. Mix well by adding the mixture to a container with a lid and shake firmly for a minute or two. If you have acrylic thinner, you can use it too.

What kind of paint can you use in an airbrush?

“Air brush Painting” – Paints labelled as Airbrush Paint are typically fluid acrylic specially designed for use in an airbrush and are the best option for beginners. Acrylic Paint has high flow Acrylics will work well in your airbrush. Golden makes a wonderful Airbrush Medium that works as a thinner for acrylic paints.

How To Mix Airbrush Paint

How do you mix latex paint for airbrushing?

Airbrush latex paints can be used for airbrushing if they are thinned to the right consistency. Usually, airbrush latex paints are some of the thicker paints available on the market, which is why they are not usually used for airbrushing. Thinning the paint is a simple process, and can usually be done with water.

How to Thin Acrylic Paint for Airbrush?

For acrylic thinner craft paint for airbrushing, you can use rubbing alcohol or try some Windex. The rubbing alcohol should easily be found in most crafts stores and Walmart.

The product label usually states airbrush paint, but this does not mean you can use the paint straight away on a project. When deciding on the use of the paint, you may have to consider something like thinning acrylic paint for airbrush. If you do not thin the paint, you might be sitting around more than painting, trying to figure out why it is not working properly.

Thinning paint before letting it go through the airbrush can help to create a finer and more superior spray pattern. Most airbrush paint, when used from the bottle, can be slightly thick. It also depends on the type or brand of airbrush paint, as they are not all the same.

There are, therefore, two main factors you have to take into consideration when thinning acrylic paint for airbrush:

  • The brand of airbrush paint you are using
  • What you plan to do with the paint

In general, you will find that thinning your acrylic paint will help to improve the way the airbrush works.

The thumb rule of thinning acrylic paint is, dilute with water until it runs as milk. Many stuff to consider when finding just the right consistency of the airbrush paint you are using to atomize perfectly. The type of airbrush acrylic paint you are using, needle plus fluid nozzle size and the air pressure you are using all come into action.
For thinning acrylic craft paint for airbrushing, simply mix a 1:1 ratio of water and acrylic paint. Mix well by adding the mixture to a container with a lid and shake firmly for a minute or two. If you have acrylic thinner, you can use it too.

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For air brush painting, the amount of reduction also depends on the size of the nozzle in your airbrush acrylic paint; a 0.5 mm nozzle will spray much thicker paint than a 0.2 given the exact air pressure is being used.

Overcoming any paints may have an opposing effect and the paints may not adhere as well. Regularly check the product tech sheets if possible. The key to it is experimenting to find what conversion works best for you and your circumstances.

How to thin acrylic paint for airbrush? Generally, you use some distilled water, or you can purchase airbrush reducers. The consistency you are looking for is something like that of milk. Some factors can affect consistency, such as

  • The type of airbrush
  • Needle size
  • Liquid nozzle size
  • Air Pressure used

Thinning paint for airbrush and getting the right consistency depends on the nozzle size, as mentioned. You will find a 0.5 mm liquid nozzle sprays thicker than that of a 0.2 mm nozzle, providing the air pressure is correct.

By reducing the colours too much, you can cause the colours to not stick as they should. The products you use should have datasheets available. Make sure to check these sheets out before using them. The trick is to discover how much reduction is necessary for your specific project. This might entail a bit of experimentation.

Airbrush Extender Vs Airbrush Thinner Vs Flow Improver

Airbrush thinner is for thinning acrylic paint for airbrush while, the colour extenders, made by paint manufacturers, do not thin the paint but make it transparent.

On the other hand, Flow improver is a medium used to enhance the flow of paint and it supports avoiding tip/nozzle drying. You can add a couple of drops of flow improver in the airbrush and it will improve flow.

How to reduce auto Air Colors?

0.3 mm needle, nozzle size – Transparent Colors thinned with Auto Air Reducer approximately 300% or more which implies -> 3 Reducer: 1 colour (3:1 ratio)

0.2 mm needle, nozzle size – Transparent Colors thinned with Auto Air Reducer approximately 500% or more which implies -> 5 Reducer: 1 colour (5:1 ratio)

To increase atomization while using an airbrush, Auto-Air Reducer might use thin paints. Often, colours are reduced up to 400% (Auto Air Reducer 4:1 Auto Air Color) while using an airbrush. Mix ratios might differ per colour and colour Series. Exact ratios are not needed.

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How To Mix Airbrush Paint

How to thin Createx Airbrush paint?

First, let’s begin with the mediums, and processes used to thin the paint. Createx airbrush paints are thinned using a 4012 high-performance reducer. 4012 is commonly used as a thinner for the “Airbrush Colors”, “Wicked Colors”, and “Illustration Colors” line of createx airbrush paints as well. 4013 Reducer Is an alternative option to 4012 Reducer for those who live in states or country’s that do not allow 4012 Reducer.

4012 is begin phased out but is said to still be available to those who desire it. Both 4011 and 4012 dry the paint somewhat quickly. In addition to using 4012 to thin the paint, you can add some 4030 Balancing Clear.

4030 balancing clear is intended to improve adhesion and durability. As well as, Improve the flow of the paint. Making it ideal for airbrush use. That being said, 4030’s main purpose is for use on hard (Nonporous) surfaces when adhesion is important. Making it the ideal additive for Automotive Applications.

GOLDEN Airbrush Colors

The GOLDEN line of Airbrush Colors is engineered to meet the highest standards of professionals, for use in airbrush, brush and technical pen. They offer the ability to create opaque, high-intensity colours for illustration and fine art purposes.

GOLDEN Airbrush Colors are formulated from a 100% water-based acrylic emulsion, incorporating only the most lightfast pigments available. This results in exceptional permanency and performance. The acrylic binder system allows for excellent chemical resistance, yielding a durable film that will not be damaged by water or ammonia.

Key Properties,

  • Viscosity – ready to use, no dilution required
  • Permanency – only the most lightfast, durable pigments used
  • Colour Saturation – rich, intense colours, allows the artist more control
  • Minimal clogging/tip-buildup – results in more time painting and less time cleaning
  • Non-removable film – durable, non-water soluble, non-alkaline soluble
  • Compatibility with other GOLDEN Acrylic products (Fluids, Heavy Body, Matte, High Loads)

Here is a paint mixing airbrush paint ratio chart used for painting,


1 Polly Scale Distilled Water 3:1 or 4:1 15-25 H2O/Washer Fluid
2 Floquil Solvent/Thinner 2:1 or 3:1 12-20 Lacquer Thinner
3 Badger Modelflex Water Very little, if any 25-30 H2O/Washer Fluid
4 Tamiya Alcohol 2:1 15-20 H2O/Washer Fluid
5 Vallejo Model Color Vallejo Thinner 3:1 20-25 Lacquer Thinner
6 Vallejo Model Air Vallejo Thinner Very little, if any 20-25 Lacquer Thinner
7 MicroLux Vallejo Thinner Very little, if any 20-25 Lacquer Thinner
8 Humbrol Water 1:1 or 2:1 15-20 Water
9 GunzeSangyo Alcohol or

Distilled Water

1:1 or 2:1 20 Water/Alcohol
10 Scalecoat II Solvent/Thinner 1:1 15-20 Lacquer Thinner
11 ModelMaster(Testors) Universal Thinner Very little, if any 18-20 H2O/Washer Fluid


12 Alclad II Lacquer Thinner    Very little, if any  – 12-15 Lacquer Thinner
13 Pactra Lacquer Thinner 1:1 20-25 Lacquer Thinner
14 Pactra Acrylic None 25-30 H2O/Washer Fluid
15 Lifecolor Acrylic Distilled Water, Washer Fluid 1:1 12-15 H2O/Washer Fluid
16 Craft Store Acrylics 25% Liquitex Slow-Dri, 25% Flow Improver, 50% water 1:2 20-30  –

It is a paint mixing airbrush paint ratio chart used for painting.

Thinning Solvent-Based paint

Solvent-based paints or oil-based paints should use the thinner or reducer that is recommended for your specific paint. In this scenario, there is too much of a risk if you mix different kinds of airbrush paint thinner or chemicals.

There are, however, a few alternatives available, which depends on what oil-based paint you are using. Unfortunately, there are numerous types of paints available, which makes it a bit difficult to pinpoint what airbrush paint thinner or exact chemical you should be using. So, it is up to you to research the specific oil-based paint you are using before you use any alternative such as the ones provided below.

Understand that you are working with chemicals when it comes to solvents. Because of that, there are some hazards involved. If you do not follow instructions, it could cause harm to your health and also affect the paint finish.

You can find a complete list of paint ingredients in the Safety Data Sheet (SDS) or Technical Data Sheet (TDS). You should be able to easily look these lists up on the internet.

DIY airbrush thinner

Make and designing small and tiny airbrush thinners, which are known as the prototype is called DIY airbrush thinner. These tiny snippets will give you an elaborate understanding of airbrush thinner.

Homemade acrylic flow improver

A ratio of one part paint to three parts water should be enough to break down the acrylic binder so that the paint acts like watercolour. Also use fluid acrylics for glazing over another colour, for creating drips (an eye dropper works well for that), for bleeding colours into each other, and for pouring. It is known as a homemade acrylic flow improver.

Homemade acrylic paint thinner

Adding up to 30% water to acrylic paint thins it but still allows it to coat a surface. Adding 60% or more water creates a watery paint application called a wash. Rubbing a wash into an absorbent surface so that only a hint of the colour remains is called a stain. It is known as homemade acrylic paint thinner.

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