How to Choose the Right Watercolors for You

Your Guide to buying the best Watercolors


Watercolor painting is a fun and enjoyable activity that can be done by people of all ages and skill levels. Whether you’re a beginner or an experienced artist, having the right supplies is essential to achieving the best results. This Watercolors buying guide will provide you with information on the different types of watercolors available, the different techniques used in watercolor painting, and tips on selecting the right supplies for your project. We hope this guide will help you find the perfect set of watercolors to create beautiful and vibrant works of art!

Key features

  1. Pigment: Watercolors come in a variety of pigments, each of which has its own color and characteristics. Consider what pigments are available and which is best suited to your project.
  2. Permanence: Some watercolor pigments are more permanent than others, meaning they are less likely to fade with time. Consider the permanence of the pigments when selecting watercolors.
  3. Opacity: The opacity of watercolors refers to how transparent or opaque the pigment is. Some pigments are more opaque than others, so consider what opacity is best for your project.
  4. Formulation: Watercolors come in a variety of formulations, such as pans, tubes, and liquid. Consider what formulation is best for your project and budget.
  5. Brands: Different brands of watercolors have different qualities and prices. Consider different brands and read reviews to determine which is best for your project.
  6. Accessories: Watercolor painting requires additional accessories, such as brushes, paper, and palettes. Consider what accessories you will need for your project and budget accordingly.

See the most popular Watercolors on Amazon

Important considerations


  • Variety of Colors: Watercolors offer a wide range of colors, from warm and cool tones to vibrant, deep hues, allowing artists to create beautiful and unique works of art.
  • Easy to Use: Watercolors are relatively easy to use compared to other mediums, making them a great choice for beginners who are just starting out.
  • Versatility: Watercolors can be used to create a variety of different styles, from traditional landscape paintings to more experimental works of art.
  • Lightweight: Watercolors are relatively lightweight and easy to transport, making them a great choice for outdoor painting.
  • Cost-Effective: Watercolors are typically much less expensive than other mediums, such as oil paints, making them a great choice for budget-conscious artists.


  • Cost: Watercolors can be more expensive than other art supplies, depending on the quality of materials you purchase.
  • Watercolor Paper: To use watercolors properly you need to use special watercolor paper because it absorbs the pigments better and controls the flow of water.
  • Transparency: Watercolors are naturally transparent, so it can be difficult to create layers and blend colors.
  • Mixing and Color Matching: Mixing colors properly takes practice, and it can be hard to match colors accurately.
  • Time Consuming: Watercolor painting requires patience and time to create a masterpiece.
  • Messy: The pigments and water involved in watercolor painting can be messy and difficult to clean up.

Best alternatives

  1. Acrylic Paint - This is a fast-drying, water-soluble medium often used for painting on canvas, fabric, paper, wood, and stone.
  2. Gouache Paint - This opaque medium can be used on a variety of surfaces and is more matte than watercolor.
  3. Inks - These liquid pigments can be used for illustrating, calligraphy, and lettering, and are often water-soluble.
  4. Pastels - This medium is made of the same pigments used in oil and acrylic paints but in the form of chalk.
  5. Colored Pencils - These wax-based pencils are used for drawing and sketching and are often very vibrant in color.
  6. Oil Paint - This is a slow-drying paint that is often used for painting on canvas.

Related tools, supplies, and accessories

  • Paint Palettes - A receptacle used for holding and mixing colors together.
  • Paintbrushes - Various brushes used for applying watercolors to paper.
  • Paint Pans - Small dishes used for holding individual colors of paint.
  • Paper - The surface to which watercolors are applied.
  • Pencils - Used for sketching out the basic outline of a picture.
  • Erasers - Used for making corrections to pencil marks.
  • Masking Tape - Used for securing paper to a flat surface while painting.
  • Water Cup - Used for holding water for cleaning brushes and dipping them into paint.

Common questions

  1. What type of watercolors should I buy? The type of watercolors you should buy depends on your purpose for using them. If you are a beginner, student-grade watercolors are best. If you are an experienced artist, professional-grade watercolors are likely the best choice.
  2. What should I look for when buying watercolors? When buying watercolors, consider what type of pigments are used, the lightfastness of the color, the permanence of the pigment, the range of colors available, and the price.
  3. What is the difference between student-grade and professional-grade watercolors? The primary difference between student-grade and professional-grade watercolors is the quality of the pigments. Professional-grade watercolors use higher quality pigments, which are more lightfast, vibrant, and permanent.
  4. Are watercolors easy to use? Watercolors can be easy to use, depending on the complexity of the painting you are creating. For simple paintings or sketches, watercolors can be quite easy to use.
  5. What other supplies do I need to use watercolors? In addition to watercolors, you will need a few other supplies such as brushes, water, paper, and a palette.


An interesting fact about watercolors is that the oldest known watercolor painting is believed to be a red horse painted on a wall of the Chauvet Cave in France dating back to around 30,000 years ago. The painting is thought to be part of a hunting magic ritual of some kind, and is the oldest known example of figurative art. This discovery has shown that people have been using watercolors for creative expression for thousands of years. (Source: Art News)

Disclaimer: This buying guide was not created by humans, and it is possible that some of it's content is inaccurate or incomplete. We do not guarantee or take any liability for the accuracy of this buying guide. Additionally, the images on this page were generated by AI and may not accurately represent the product that is being discussed. We have tried to convey useful information, but it is our subjective opinion and should not be taken as complete or factual.