When you say the words “Air Brush,” I’m tempted to back away slowly. To me, those words are synonymous with messy, hard to control, complicated systems. But the AirBrainz kit from Testors (you know the folks who make all of the model airplane paints) is a pleasant surprise.
Disclosure: samples provided for review purposes only. My opinions are honest and my own, and based on first-hand experience with the product. Some links contained in the post are affiliate links.
Here’s how the product is described on the website:
The no-tools-needed, easy snap-and-spray, customizable airbrush system from Testors. Airbrainz lets you customize your airbrush system, and then customize your gear! Spray over stencils to add your style to cell phone cases, backpacks, T-shirts and more. Layer multiple colors for creative effects. Great for broad area coverage on craft and hobby projects.
The unique clip cap airbrush system is incredibly easy to use and easy to clean. The Clip Caps screw directly onto Testor’s 1/4 oz paint bottles and then snap on the airbrush for easy set up, fast color changes, and easy clean up!
Each kit includes an Airbrainz airbrush body with grips, 2 clip caps, two empty paint bottles, and a can of propellant. Just add paint!
So yes, you should know that there is no paint in the kit- those are sold separately.
I made you a six-minute video that will show you the unboxing, set up, demo of painting, and some of the surfaces I painted on!
What I didn’t show you in the video were my two teenage girls (ages 18 and 11) painting in the studio with me. After I shot my footage, I invited them in with me to try out the AirBrainz system. Neither had ever used airbrush, and I was interested to see how they’d like it.
Both girls took to the s airbrushing easily- switching colors is really easy and they enjoyed the feeling of “sophistication” (Air brushing! How cool!) but both also got a little frustrated with occasional nozzle clogs. You will need to keep a few toothpicks and/or fine wire handy to unclog the inevitable paint clots that will keep the acrylic paint from flowing. This is not a deal-breaker- but if you are using the system with minors, it’s important to know that you might need to be on hand for some problem-solving.
The paint covered very well- the Formica samples needed just one coat on the smooth side, and two coats on the rough/porous side. I especially loved it in my art journal- it’s the most satisfying way to use stencils!! No wrinkling or dry time- and it’s so easy control.
Let’s get to the pros and concerns, as I experienced them:
- Easy to use- no mixing!
- Uses acrylic paint- easy cleanup.
- Very portable since it uses canned air.
- Price point is moderate- $44 here on Amazon but you need paint as well.
- My 5th-grader could use it with minimal help and supervision. Great Tween craft!
- Kit doesn’t come with paint
- The triggers are top-heavy, so when you put it down it falls over. I resorted to using a glass to “hold” my paint/trigger, since it falling over annoyed me.
- Occasionally clogging, but nothing that can’t be rectified with a toothpick and some warm water.
- Buy extra Clip Caps- it’s SOOO much easier to keep the creative juices flowing of you don’t have to stop and rinse out the Clip Caps every few minutes.
- Keep babywipes on hand- it’s very easy to clear a sluggish nozzle with a baby wipe!
- Use a glass as a “holder” for the triggers- I liked being able to park in in a glass instead of worrying about it falling over and spilling.
I do plan on a follow up review/post about using different paints and testing the Testors acrylic on fabric- so stay tuned!
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