What are the key features and terms of airbrushes?

Do you know about the key features and terms of airbrushes? Airbrushes are the perfect tool to apply the color on different surfaces. You can use the airbrush to spray the acrylic on plastic, makeup on the skin, watercolor on paper, and many more. An airbrush uses the process of atomization to break up the liquid in tiny particles.

KEY FEATURES AND TERMS OF AIRBRUSHESIt is very beneficial to produce seamless blends, coating, and gradients. But to obtain the perfect accuracy, artists need to know about the key features and terms of an airbrush.

Key features and terms of airbrushes

The key features and terms of airbrush are mainly related to the different parts of the airbrush. Let’s see the key features and terms of the airbrush.

Feed style

The first term is the feed style of the airbrush. This term describes how the paint or spray is fed into the airbrush. The feed style of an airbrush can be divided into three types.

Gravity feed

The first one is the gravity feed system. The paint is actually drawn from a mounting cup above the airbrush. This system is known as gravity feed because color moves in the airbrush from the above cup due to gravity. The gravity feeding system allows the airbrush to spray with lower air pressure.

It is a perfect feeding system if you are looking to use a smaller amount of paint. The gravity feeding system is efficient for many applications. Moreover, the lid over the feeding cup prevents the paint from splitting.

Siphon feed

It is an opposite system in which the paint jar is at the lower side of the airbrush. In this system, the compressor does the maximum work. So, more air pressure is needed in this case to pull the paint. This method is perfect for an immense amount of spray medium. Many artists also have known this system as a bottom feed or bottle-feed.

Side feed

As clear from the name in this system, the color is drawn from the side of the airbrush. In this type of feeding style, the cup is attached to the left or right side of the airbrush. The side feeding style is perfect when you are looking for detailed work.


The term action is mainly referred to as the air and paint control of an airbrush. An airbrush can have single action or dual action.

Single action

When we talk about the single-action airbrushes, they have independent control of the air and paint. In this case, there is a trigger to control only air. There is a dial on the handle which allows you to control the amount of paint being sprayed.

These types of airbrushes are beneficial for many kinds of applications. When you want to repeat the spray pattern, a single-action airbrush can be a perfect choice. Sometimes, experts recommend it to the new users.


A dual-action airbrush allows you to control the air and paint flow as well. When a trigger presses down, it releases the air; when the trigger comes back, it releases the paint. Moreover, when you slightly pull back the trigger, it’s releasing a low amount of color, and the other pull releases the more amount of paint. A dual-action airbrush provides maximum control during use. It can be a perfect choice for professional artists.


The term mix is referred to as the mixing of the air and paint. These key features of airbrushes are possible in two ways, which are referred by the terms external mix, and internal mix.

External mix

The first one is the external mix; in this case, the air and paint are releases from separate apertures, and they mix from outside the airbrush. It’s easier to clean the external mix system as compared to the internal mix system.

Internal mix

As clear from the name, in the internal mix system, the air and paint mix inside the air, just leaving before the airbrush. The internal mix system is perfect for superior atomization. That’s why many professional artists choose the internal mix system.

Trigger style

The next thing is the trigger-style of the airbrush. Many simpler models are just controllable from the top lever, but many advanced airbrushes are controllable from the bottom trigger. The trigger-style airbrushes are perfect if you get used to the spray guns. Trigger style airbrushes are easy to use and control as compared to lever style.

Extra features

You should know about these extra features if you want to use the airbrush correctly. Consider them as part of key features and terms of airbrushes. Let’s see these features.

Micro air control

The micro air control feature of the airbrush allows you to control the air in minimum steps. It is ideal for producing the stipple effect.

Quick flush cutaway handle

The quick flush cutaway handle is perfect for easy and quick cleaning. You can easily access the needle with this handle.

Preset handle

The preset handle is perfect for controlling the airbrush. It’s beneficial for the new users to spraying the color with the same pattern consistency.

Fluid cup

The fluid cup can be attachable at the top, side, or bottom to hold the paint. These cups can be in different styles and a lid.

Airbrush parts

It is necessary to know about many parts of airbrushes to understand the functioning of the airbrush thoroughly. Let’s see the different parts of an airbrush.


The nozzle is one of the essential parts of the airbrush. It’s necessary to replace the nozzle with time to get the perfect results.

Spring steel needle

A spring steel needle is perfect to resist the breakage.

The solvent resistant needle packing

The solvent resistant packing of the airbrush increases the durability of the airbrush in the case of solvent-based materials.

3 key features for airbrush artworks


From all the above discussion, we can conclude that it’s essential to know about the different key features and terms of the airbrushes to get the perfect results. These features are mainly about the control, cleaning, and durability of airbrushes. So, if you want to get the ideal results, make sure to know about these features and terms.

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