Similar to traditional oil paints, water-mixable oils contain a modified oil binder that allows them to be diluted and cleaned up with water. They have a texture and a drying time akin to those of traditional oils, and they can be applied using the same techniques. But unlike traditional oils, they can be manipulated with water to vary their consistency and transparency: the more water you mix into the paint, the quicker it will dry and the more opaque it will appear. However, once dry, the paint is water resistant. The greatest benefit to water-mixable oils is their ease of use. Unlike traditional oils that require hazardous solvents, water-mixable oils can be used safely in classrooms and spaces with limited ventilation, and they can be cleaned up with soap and water. Our picks below will help you find the best water-mixable oil paint for your project needs.
1. Lukas Berlin Water Mixable Oil Paint Set
Lukas Berlin puts a beeswax additive in its water-mixable oil paints, giving them a smooth, buttery consistency similar to that of traditional oils. These 10 colors in 20-milliliter tubes have a high concentration of pigments for excellent color intensity. They are easily mixed or thinned with water with no impact on drying time, lightfastness, or brilliance.
2. Winsor & Newton Water Mixable Oil Color Set
With a thick, smooth texture that looks and feels like traditional oil paint, Winsor & Newton’s water-mixable oil paint strikes a balance between pigment and oil to provide a stable emulsion with excellent working characteristics. This smooth paint, in a set of 10 colors in 21-milliliter tubes, has a standard consistency that can be thinned with water as needed for a broad variety of painting techniques. Considered a high-quality student-grade paint, these water-mixable oils are lightfast with rich, deep colors.
3. Marie’s Water Soluble Oil Colors Set
A great choice for beginners, Marie’s water-soluble oil paints are rich, water-mixable oils suitable for most oil painting techniques. This 18-color set of 12-milliliter paint tubes is an excellently priced option for those who want to experiment with water-mixable oils but aren’t ready to invest in a lot of paint. Since they don’t require the use of harsh solvents, this set of oil paints is easy to learn with and would work well in classrooms and other young artist settings.
4. Reeves Water Mixable Oil Color Paint Set
Reeves’s water-mixable oil paints have a smooth consistency and excellent color depth. This set of 12 introductory colors in modest (10-milliliter) tubes is a great choice for students and beginners. With the same benefits as traditional oils, you will get a lightfast paint with a long drying time and adequate blending, suitable for a wide variety of painting applications.
5. Cobra Water Mixable Oil Color Pack
A high-quality, artist-grade product, this water-mixable oil paint has a creamy texture and superior color depth. The set of 10 hues in 40-milliliter tubes provides a rich paint with a low evaporation rate and excellent pigmentation. A stable paint consistency allows a lot of push and pull so you can create both opaque and transparent layers, depending on the addition of water and other media. Once dry, the paint remains true to its original application, retaining color intensity, brushstrokes, and textures. With the highest level of lightfastness on the market, it delivers color integrity that will remain for years to come.