Baking can be considered both an art and a science, and that is especially true in the case of cake decorating. Whether you are making cupcakes for a children’s birthday party or a two hundred-guest wedding cake, you will need a combination of skills, knowledge, and experience. Using the right tools will also make a difference.
This cake decorating method can produce beautiful results using the airbrushes technique. The process can be much faster than painting fondant or painting batches of icing with brushes.
Aside from its time-saving properties, airbrushes can also be beneficial for certain designs, such as ombré cakes, where the colors blend seamlessly. Airbrushes can also be used to apply designs using stencils.
The quality of airbrushes for cake decoration also varies greatly, as it does with many other baking appliances and gadgets. It is unfortunate that some kits are incredibly hard to use and often create more problems than they solve. A badly designed airbrushing kit will hinder even the most experienced cake decorators from achieving the desired effect.
I have decided to share my favorites in an attempt to save other people the frustration of trying to work with troublesome kits. Firstly, let me suggest some great airbrushes kits that are a little bit more budget-friendly, followed by my overall recommendation for the best airbrushes for cake decorating.
1. Airbrush Cake Decorating Kit Watson and Webb Airbrushing System
The mini airbrush set by Watson and Webb is the perfect pick for the newbie cake decorator. You also get an airbrush gun, a 4-millimeter needle, and eight airbrush colors from Watson and Webb in this kit. This is an excellent choice for gum pastes, sugar pastes, and fondants.
The electronic speed control makes it possible to put out the air more consistently and without sputtering. While the airbrush spray is being applied, washable air filters avoid getting into the machine’s motor. By incorporating an airbrush holder into the machine, users are able to blend hands-free. Moreover, it’s the best place to lay down an airbrush between applications.
You can choose your own colors or use the provided ones. This collection from Watson & Webb is extraordinarily colorful and easy to mix. The colors are enough to complete several full-size projects.
With the Watson and Webb set, users can control the flow of their colors using the single-action trigger. By using two-millimeter airflow nozzles, the air pressure is kept under 15 psi. By using this, you can achieve a more controlled and quieter decorating experience. Made of solid stainless steel, the airbrush offers improved durability. It is fitted with a stain-resistant compressor made from acrylic. These compact pieces are also durable. They are suitable for traveling.
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2. Aw Airbrush Compressor Kit
Its complete kit of components may make this airbrush kit initially seem a bit complicated. The AW 3 Multi-Purpose Professional Airbrush Kit is accompanied by detailed instructions that provide all the information you need, as well as tips for getting the most out of the tool.
This kit contains three different sized and shaped airbrushes of high quality. It is very easy to create soft changing effects with thin lines, and the 1/6 HP Air Compressor is easily adjustable with the small wrench included in the kit.
With this model, you don’t have to worry about corrosion or rust after using it for a while. Since the nozzle cap is mounted with a Teflon O-ring, this is possible. By adding this feature, the airbrush will also stay clean longer after use.
The case you receive also helps you keep your equipment organized. The small pieces can be transported easily and no small pieces will go missing. There is just one thing missing from this kit, and that is the food colors you need to decorate the cakes, so be sure you pick up some ahead of time.
3. Kopykake Airmaster Airbrush Set
When you’re decorating a lot of cakes in a hurry, you’re not going to want to waste your time. Your airbrush and air compressor need to be powerful and deliver consistent results. It is fortunate that the Kopykake Airmaster Airbrush Set is specifically designed for high-volume cake decorating.
The adjustable pressure knob makes it easy to quickly and easily choose the effects you want. Depending on your preference, you can create very intricate patterns as well as cover a larger area quickly and easily.
A rare feature of this air compressor is that it runs virtually silently. You can use it at any time now without worrying about its security. It will also help you if you need to work late at night due to a tight deadline.
The air compressor usually vibrates a lot when in use. It can shake the table and even shake off onto the floor if it shakes itself off. So, you should tape or suction cup the bottom of your air compressor to your table in order to secure it.
The model is perfect for someone who needs a basic airbrush that will allow them to do delicate and detailed work. This model may not come with all the bells and whistles of other models, but it’s very simple to use. The food colors you need to make the edible food will need to be purchased separately.
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4. Master Airbrush Cool Runner II
The first thing you should do when you start using an airbrush is to ensure that you have everything you need. Trying to track down all the parts individually can be very time-consuming and expensive, but fortunately, this won’t be an issue when you choose the Master Airbrush Cool Runner II.
The beauty of this airbrush is that it comes complete with a full set which includes 24 different acrylic paints and a whole host of other accessories such as mixing cups and sticks. You will therefore be able to produce your best work faster and have everything you need close at hand when you need it.
An airbrush compressor is included with the kit, which is a durable and versatile machine. An air compressor like this one provides a range of air pressures from 0-57 PSI, runs quietly, and is fully adjustable so that you can achieve a variety of different effects with very little effort.
You are sure to find this single piston 1/5hp compressor to be more than sufficient for all your airbrush painting needs. The air compressor is equipped with two cooling fans to prevent overheating, and you will also receive a five-year warranty, although this model should perform well for much longer.
As such, it is important to keep in mind that this airbrush set is intended for art rather than cake decorating. Food should not be in contact with the paints in the set. This set is still a great tool for developing your artistic skills before you start working on cakes, and the airbrush can be easily colored with food-safe colors.
5. Master Airbrush Cake Decorating Airbrushing System Kit
Do you want to enhance your cake decoration skills? You need an airbrush set that offers plenty of flexibility in such a case. You will find all the airbrushes you need with the Master Airbrush Cake Decorating Airbrushing System Kit with two different airbrushes.
This kit contains seven airbrushes, each of which will allow you to create different effects. Model G34 dual-action airbrushes have 0.3mm tips and are ideal for fine blending. Additionally, you will find an airbrush that has a 0.8mm tip that helps you to create fairly detailed special effects, which we found impressive.
As well as the kit comes 12 vibrant chef master colors that were specially formulated for cake decoration. You can mix different shades of these colors as well as create different effects with them. The colors were also created according to the FDA’s strict safety guidelines to ensure that you are completely safe.
As you can easily adjust the air pressure with the air compressor that comes with the kit, you have good control over the process. The filter includes a true diaphragm and trap system that ensures greater stability and prevents clogs during use.
It may well be one of the airbrushes for cake decorating that you can buy. You’ll be able to get to grips with this model right away since it is so simple to operate, and the detailed instructions help to ease the learning curve for you.
6. Master Airbrush Multi-Purpose Airbrushing System Kit
A high-quality airbrush will allow you to create fine details on your cakes. This is especially important when writing on or drawing pictures on cakes. Master Airbrush Multi-Purpose Airbrushing System Kit features a 0.3mm needle for effortless detailing.
Its fully adjustable nozzle makes it remarkably versatile. Changing the nozzle will allow you to go from narrow detail to wide spray patterns without having to purchase different airbrushes for every task.
Even if you are a complete beginner, you will find that this airbrush is easy to use since there are not too many parts to figure out. If you have more experience, you can still have the same level of versatility.
The airbrush comes with a gravity fluid cup and a foot braided air hose in addition to the airbrush. The combination makes the airbrush lightweight and portable. As for the build itself, you can be certain that it will withstand whatever you throw at it.
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Beginners may find this model challenging to assemble partly because the airbrush and the line cannot be quickly disconnected. In spite of that, with a little practice, you are sure to become proficient with the technique very quickly.
7. Sakai Dual Action Airbrush Kit
The downside to many airbrushes is that they can make a lot of noise, which can potentially cause an issue if a child is sleeping in your home. Due to the Sakai Dual Action Airbrush Kit’s virtually silent operation, this issue is eliminated.
Because of its lightweight and compact design, this model is very convenient to use. The airbrush comes with a case that can fit conveniently inside a purse, so it’s easy to set up when you get there.
The dual action in this model helps you use less food color during the process of spraying your cakes. As a result, you can create a beautiful, soft, gradual change effect that is both easy and quick to achieve, even if you are completely new to cake decorating.
You are also likely to appreciate this model’s low maintenance requirements. It may be difficult to clean the nozzle if it becomes clogged. Thus, it is crucial to thoroughly clean the airbrush and nozzle following each use.
Cleaning this model is actually quite simple and quick since you are provided with a set of special cleaning brushes. Brushes are made in a variety of sizes so that even hard-to-reach surfaces can be cleaned perfectly.
8. Paasche Airbrush H-Card Single Action Airbrush Kit
The first time you use an airbrush, you will probably want to start slowly. Many kits are fully equipped, but they may contain several complex features which can mean that learning them can be a challenging process.
An impressively compact and straightforward design is the hallmark of Paasche’s H-Card Single Action Airbrush Kit. There is an airbrush, six-foot hose, one-ounce bottle, and wrench included in the kit. The hose should easily connect to the airbrush with the supplied wrench.
This simple design also makes it more compact and lightweight, making it an ideal choice if you need to decorate cakes at multiple locations. As an added safety measure, the airbrush has been chrome plated.
Ensure that after using this model you clean it thoroughly. It is likely to clog if you do not do this, and this can prove problematic if you are trying to make an intricate cake design.
It should also be noted that this airbrush set does not include any colors. The set is suitable for all types of food colors. It is best to purchase a set of food colors in advance so that you can start immediately.
9. Pointzero Cake Airbrush Decorating Kit
You may feel overwhelmed by the process if you are just learning how to decorate cakes. Not knowing where to begin can be frustrating. With the PointZero Cake Airbrush Decorating Kit, this can be done both easily and quickly!
You’ll also receive no fewer than seven different airbrush guides with the kit. We’ve compiled these special guides to provide all the information you’ll need. They allow you to become a professional cake decorator in no time.
Moreover, you are provided with everything you need to create a variety of different types of cake decorations. Using three different airbrushes, a set of cake decoration colors, and the impressive diversity of this model, you can create a wide range of different spray patterns.
Also available is a tabletop stand to enhance the ease and efficiency of the process. There are several different color cups available for you to mix colors in, along with a glass bottle. The airbrush will allow you to achieve sharp and precise details once you master it.
With the help of the instructional video, this airbrush promises to be easy enough for even novices to operate. The video’s steps will produce perfect results every time if you follow them.
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10. U.S. Cake Supply – Complete Cake Decorating Airbrush Kit
An airbrush for cake decoration with a compact design and long hose is sure to be convenient to use. There are a lot of models out there, but this one keeps things simple. As a result, you can rest assured that U.S. Cake Supply – Complete Cake Decorating Airbrush Kit is ideal for anyone looking to decorate cakes.
You will find everything you need in the model to get started right away. We provide you with a set of twelve food colors in different shades to choose from. A precision airbrush is also available to create an array of different effects.
You can choose from three different settings to achieve varying degrees of delicacy, so even people who have unsteady hands can be sure that they will get flawless results. A special airbrush holder is provided with the kit.
No matter how new you are, you will see impressive results quite quickly. A few drops of the desired color are placed in the airbrush cup, the compressor is turned on, and the trigger is pulled.
This model includes a lifetime warranty as an added bonus. In addition, you should be aware that this model can be rather noisy at high pressures, which may not be ideal if your children are at home.
Choosing an Airbrush for Cake Decoration that always turns heads
Professional decorators and home bakers alike can take their decorating skills to the next level by using the right airbrush system. Before you invest in an airbrush system, you should consider some things, so be sure to do some research and find out what your options are. On the list above, you’ll find a few of the best airbrushes available, and we chose them based on several factors including those listed below. You should read up on the most important factors to consider when choosing an airbrush for cake decorating.
When shopping for an airbrush, a color delivery system and distribution system are two of the most important considerations. It is the feed system that delivers and distributes the ink to the gun and onto the cakes. As cake decorating requires precision, not power, most baking airbrush systems utilize gravity feed mechanisms that allow the color to flow into the airbrush thanks to gravity, which means less air is needed.
The smaller compressor required for this method gives bakers more control over their decorations. On this list, almost all sets feature gravity feed. Gravity feed is preferred for multiple reasons. For work on a larger scale, it might make more sense to invest in a siphon-feed system, which feeds the airbrush with the color using suction. The system can hold a large amount of color at once, making it suitable for large projects or commercial baking.
Brush kits versus standalone brushes
As well as dozens of different airbrushing kits available today, you can also get a single model or a small kit that may have only one brush or a few accessories. The more colors you get, the better, and these make wonderful gifts for people who want more colors.
You will find the best value in the airbrush kits mentioned above, including the Master Airbrush kit. A kit just makes things easier because it comes with all the necessary equipment and accessories in one box. Furthermore, some kits are quite impressive in terms of what they provide. There are a variety of kits that include everything from a few extras to more extensive sets of tools, supplies, and more.
Some of the above kits include the colors you need to begin with, so you don’t have to worry about buying them individually. You can also save a lot of money when you purchase kits since they generally cost less than buying each component individually.
Is there ever a time when buying a standalone brush or a simple set makes sense? Buying replacement tools for tools you already possess and do not require all the extra accessories. As a result, settling on a single brush is probably a waste of money, since you’ll have to purchase all your accessories later and spend even more money.
Anatomy of a compressor and airflow
A compressor is what generates all the air that is required by the airbrush. There are a few budget-minded airbrush kits on this list without an air source, but there are most of them with a compressor. Those who already have a compressor or are not bothered by finding another air source may find these useful.
Making the right choice when it comes to compressors can make a big difference. A large amount of air will make splatters, and not enough will mean that you will not be able to create the precise designs that you envisioned. Best results can be achieved with a compressor ranging from 18-25 PSI.
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Make sure that the air compressor or airbrush system includes a knob or other mechanism that allows you to adjust the air pressure to ensure consistent, even flow regardless of the speed or pressure.
Comparison of single-action and double-action airbrushes
In today’s market, airbrushes come in single-action and double-action types. One of the most popular types of cake decorating brushes is the single-action brush because it allows the user to control both air flow and distribution.
It may be necessary that the user press harder on certain models in order to get a more intense color, even if the airflow remains constant. Although every model operates differently, you need to get familiar with them before you purchase.
The more skilled decorators think that double-action airbrushes offer more detail and precision than single-action brushes. The only downside is that color and airflow must be controlled separately. Thus, they need to continuously pull the trigger until the ideal color and air pressure is achieved.
Perhaps you would prefer the single-action brush design unless you require more precision or are confident with using the dual-action brush. Later on, you might find that a double-action airbrush is worth checking out if you’re willing to put in the time, but a single-action brush will be sufficient to get you started.
Consideration of Other Factors
For cake decorating, the elements above are crucial to your selection. You may also consider some other factors. These factors are outlined below in detail so that you know what you need to consider.
When choosing an airbrush system, you should opt for one that is equipped with high-quality airflow and color distribution methods. Ink-delivering systems on airbrushes generally use gravity feeds to minimize the risk of quality problems, but more things could go wrong with an airbrush than just the ink delivery system. Check out user reviews and third-party reviews like this one to get an idea of how well-made various brands are.
Paints come in a variety of types and consistencies as well. Airbrushing food colors are designed to be thin and slightly runny, so they can be applied with a tiny nozzle attached to an airbrush. Using thicker paints can cause clogs or make moving the airbrush more difficult, so be certain your airbrush will be able to handle your work. There are usually instructions on the product itself that state what can and cannot be done with it, but being aware of the differences helps.
Included Features and Accessories
You’ll find several kits on this list that include a full set of tools and accessories, as well as food-safe colors, so you don’t have to return to the store once they reopen. Frequently, these brushes include different sizes of nozzles so that you can choose the thickness that fits your needs. When looking for the best airbrush kit, check out what you’re getting for the money and make sure you find one with all of the best accessories and features.
Ease of Cleaning
Nobody likes having to clean up on their day off. You will want to keep your airbrushing kit clean when you own one. If you want an airbrush that can be disassembled and cleaned, either by handwashing or by using the dishwasher, then make sure it is easy to do so. You need to find a cleaning solution that works for the airbrush itself, as well as its components. Cleaning an airbrush is as simple as rinsing it with clean water. Additionally, if you want a deeper clean, you can try an alcohol-based solution.
There are some commonly asked questions about cake decorating with an airbrush. The answers to these questions are below.
Can I use my airbrush to decorate cakes?
There is usually an instruction manual included with every airbrush. The same steps apply to airbrushing cakes and pastries. They are listed below.
- Make sure your airbrush is clean before you start using it. The fluid cup can be sprayed with warm water until the water in the spray is clean.
- You can now use the air to dry the inside by pressing the trigger.
- Combine the colors of your choice and place them on the fluid cup.
- Aim to hold the airbrush 6 – 8 inches away from the work surface. You can also read the manual to determine the ideal distance between the airbrush nozzle and the cake.
- The nozzle of the airbrush should be held at a 45-degree angle for soft and wide lines, and at a 90-degree angle for sharp and defined lines.
- You can activate the edible color on your work surface by pressing the trigger. Overwrite if you need sharper coloring.
How Much PSI Is Best for Airbrushing?
It is extremely important to keep the compressor air pressure low because either low or high pressure can cause you to achieve terrible results.
Airbrushes typically range from 10 to 25 psi. When decorating cakes, select a compressor with a knob for adjusting the pressure. Adjust the pressure between 18-25 psi.
Can I use my airbrush to decorate buttercream cakes?
Sure, of course. Nevertheless, you should not stand too close to this surface while using the airbrush to remove buttercream as it will damage it. As a result, practice is crucial before making an important decision.
How Should an Airbrush Gun Be Cleaned?
Cleaning an airbrush kit according to the manufacturer’s instructions is the best way. A little warm water and a brush will usually do the job. You should clean the airbrush every time after using it by filling a fluid cup with water and pressing the trigger until all the paint has been pushed out.
Then you can use a brush to push the paint through if it’s clogged. Once it’s cleaned out, you can clean the exterior with water. The instruction guide will usually specify what type of cleaning fluid you should use if the airbrush needs to be cleaned. The kit may include cleaning fluid that’s recommended for cleaning the airbrush.