What We Like
Easy to mix and blend
Super rich color
Paints well on canvas
What We Don't Like
Dries semi-transparent unless you add water while painting
Winsor & Newton makes a wide range of paint products that are beloved by students and casual painters around the world. The company may be based in the United Kingdom, but most big art stores in the United States stock its products, making Winsor & Newton a loyal choice for painters. I recently put the brand’s 10-tube Galeria Acrylic Paint Set to the test, rating its quality and performance on both mixed media paper and canvas. Ahead, you’ll learn everything there is to know about this 10-paint set, from the variety and richness of the colors to the ease of blending.
Quality: Super thick, works best with some water
A little bit of background about me: I use acrylic paint (so-called because they're made up of acrylic polymer emulsion and pigment) a lot. The fast-drying, water-based solution is my medium of choice, and tote bags are my canvas. There’s nothing more satisfying than giving a bit of personality to a tote bag everyone seems to have (New Yorker, looking at you).
My partner, Joe, studied fine art in college and was forced to answer all of my questions around viscosity, performance, and paper weight; in other words, I had a professional to back up all of my gut-checked opinions.
This paint can be tough to get off of your brush; it really sticks.
Straight out of the tube, this paint is really thick. The smooth texture is great for getting clean lines—and it works even better if you add a touch of water to it (acrylic paint is water-soluble). If you’re painting on paper and you don’t add any water to the paint, you’re going to need a few layers to get a good finish.
On the canvas tote bag, the Winsor & Newton acrylic went on like a dream. To me, it seems like this paint needs a little texture to cling onto and look its best.
Quantity: A great variety for a good price
Again, you’re going to want to add water to this paint—not only will it cover more space that way, but the finish is also more matte and opaque when mixed with water. If you’re painting on canvas, add less water than you would when painting on paper.
In terms of the actual colors you get, there are 10 in this set: Cadmium Yellow Medium Hue, Cadmium Red Hue, Crimson, Winsor Blue, Phthalo Green, Yellow Ochre, Burnt Sienna, Raw Umber, Mars Black, and Titanium White. I found the range of colors to be plenty to get you started on your own color mixing. I messed around with creating a lighter version of the Yellow Ochre and ended up with a delightful dandelion color—I highly recommend it.
Blending: So much fun
This paint is so fun to mix and blend! I am a big fan of those ASMR videos on YouTube of people mixing paint, coming up with colors I didn’t even know were possible. If you’re not blending this paint and coming up with your own colors, you’re missing out. Aside from being incredibly relaxing, the paint blends really well. I did so and found that not only does the paint become smoother and more opaque, but it also glides onto the paper and canvas. To truly appreciate the range of these colors, you have to blend them.
If you’re not blending this paint and coming up with your own colors, you’re missing out.
One thing I did notice is that there is a slight streaking if you don’t fully mix the colors. There’s an easy fix for that: Have some patience and make sure the paints are fully blended before dipping your brush in. This paint is thick, so don’t get impatient.
Performance: Quick drying
As mentioned above—and it’s worth mentioning again—you’re going to need more than one coat of this paint to fully cover your paper if you aren’t adding any water into the mix. This paint can be tough to get off of your brush; it really sticks. That’s great news for the thing you’re painting, but not great news for your cleanup.
The smooth texture is great for getting clean lines—and it works even better if you add a touch of water to it.
The paint didn’t go as far on the canvas tote, but it did go on more opaque than it did on the mixed media paper. As expected of acrylic paint, this set dried super fast, within five minutes.
Color Richness: Almost too rich
The colors are super rich—almost too rich, as I found it difficult to tell the Mars Black from the Phthalo Green while under direct light. To fix that, add just a touch of white or dilute the paint with some water. You’ll need more than one layer to get a true appreciation for the depth of the color. Out of all the colors, Crimson seems to have the most personality, going from a deep rose to a bright Barbie pink with a dollop of Titanium White.
Price: A great deal
You might start out with 10 colors, but the blending and mixing opportunities—and a quality paint that doesn’t cheapen as you add other hues—make this set completely worth the money. At 60 milliliters each, the tubes are on the small side, and you can certainly find larger portions of thinner paint, but the texture of this acrylic paint is worth the extra money.
Competition: Thicker and easier to blend
Compared to brands like Golden, this paint from Winsor & Newton is far thicker. It’s more comparable to a similar set from Liquitex, but even then, it blends much more easily and quickly. I tested all three brands, and the Winsor & Newton set was my favorite.
Another thing I noticed: There was no strong odor with this paint. Sometimes you get a sulfuric scent—depending on what’s in the paint—and this one was pleasantly scent-free. This was a definite plus side, as I often spend hours hunched over a palette of paint.
Interested in checking out more options? Take a look at our roundup of the best acrylic paint brands.
- Product Name Galeria Acrylic Paint 10 Tube Set
- Product Brand Winsor & Newton
- MPN 2190517
- Price $27.00
- Tube Capacity 60 ml
- What's Included 10 tubes of paint in the following colors: Cadmium Yellow Medium Hue, Cadmium Red Hue, Crimson, Winsor Blue, Phthalo Green, Yellow Ochre, Burnt Sienna, Raw Umber, Mars Black, and Titanium White