Airbrush 101- The Basics

I promised you I would show you how to use an airbrush gun so here we go. Airbrush 101 baby! We are going to start with the basics today and I will have more airbrush tutorials for you soon. I promise.

Airbrush 101 www.thebearfootbaker.comMeet Wendy! Windy is my friend. When you look at her from the outside she seems complicated! I ordered her at Karen’s only after I saw a demo by my friend Marlyn aka Montreal Confections. She makes some amazing things with hers! She also made some beautiful things that day but what amazed me most  is how easy it was to use and clean the airbrush gun. She totally blew my mind and I ordered one for myself right away and named her Wendy!

Airbrush 101 www.thebearfootbaker.comHere is what is inside the box (there was some other things that I am not sure how to use but I will figure it out one day). It comes with a nice little case to keep the gun in. The gun is the part that you need to take care of. You don’t want to break it so when you are not using it place it back in there. The gun is Wendy’s brain! Protect it!

Airbrush 101:

Airbrush 101 www.thebearfootbaker.comStart with the assembly. First, plug one end of the rubber tube into Wendy.

Airbrush 101 www.thebearfootbaker.comPlug the other end into the gun.

Airbrush 101 www.thebearfootbaker.comNow plug the power cord into Wendy. Then plug it into an outlet.

Airbrush 101 www.thebearfootbaker.comThe button with the circle and the line at the top is the on/off button. The other 3 buttons are the mode buttons which controls how fast the air comes out. It has high, medium and low. I use low a lot.

Airbrush 101 www.thebearfootbaker.comBefore you can airbrush something you need to pick a color. I ordered my colors with the gun and I got the Airbrush 12 Color Kit! I was so happy!  I also got the Pearl Sheen.  The Pearl is beautiful and I will show you more on that this week.

Airbrush 101 www.thebearfootbaker.comThe trigger on the top of the gun is how you spray. The farther you pull it back the more color comes out. I am not going to spray anything tonight. This is Airbrush 101 and we will get to the fun stuff this week. I just want you to see how it works so you can decide if you want one for yourself or not. It is an investment so before you buy remember, knowledge is power!

Airbrush 101 www.thebearfootbaker.comLook how easy it is to get the color in. Just a few drops go a LONG way! Then you are ready to spray your cookie. More on that later.

Airbrush 101 www.thebearfootbaker.comNow, Wendy needs a good bath and Marlyn taught me to do this over the sink and she is BRILLIANT! I wish cleaning the icing tips were this easy!  See the little squeeze dropper? Fill it with water. Then, put it into the gun and spray into the sink until the water comes out clear. You may have to fill it up a time or two but it is kinda fun to watch the colors fade.

Airbrush 101 www.thebearfootbaker.comThis is the fun part. Put your finger over the tip and pull back on the trigger. This will clean the inside of the gun and make some fun bubbles! See them! Then move your finger and spray the rest of the water out of it and it is all clean!! How easy was that!!!

Airbrush 101 www.thebearfootbaker.comWhen you are done, put it back in the box until you are ready to use it again.

There you have it! How to use your airbrush gun. I have said it before and I will say it again, we will have fun using this all week long!

More on Airbrush Gun:
How to use an airbrush gun
How to clean an airbrush gun

Bear hugs,



  1. Oh, this is great…..I’ve had so many questions about an airgun, so I am taking this all in and can’t wait for you to impart all your knowledge about one to us. Thank you!!

  2. Wow – I have had mine for almost a year now and I didn’t know the “put your finger over the end” trick! So much easier than taking the whole thing apart and cleaning each part! Thanks so much, I will have to try that next time!!

    • Eli, that is the part that convinced me to buy it! I didn’t want something that was going to be hard to clean! LOL Thanks for stopping by and leaving a comment! Have a great day!

      • Oh – one more thing… I bought mine at Michaels. It was the Duff Goldman one (Ace of Cakes). I was able to use one of their 40% off coupons on it to, which made for a great deal!! It looks identical to the one you have above, so appears to just change the logo depending who is promoting the product. Just a little tip to save some $$… Thanks again!

        • Hi Lisa, Do you know of this brand that is mentioned here at Michaels? I want to get my daughter one for Christmas and I do need to get a good bargain. I need a good one as my daughter is very talented and already makes amazing decorated cakes, etc with fondit and flowers. She mentioned an airbrush would make things a lot easier. I also like the fact that we can get the others things needed easy at Michaels verses on line.
          Any suggestions of what is needed to buy to get her started is really appreciated. Thank you so much for all of your help people like me :) Blessings to you!!

          • Hi Barbara,

            I have heard that the Duff airbrush system is a lot like the one I use. If you use the Michael’s coupon, you can get a really good deal on it. I am not sure if Michael’s sells a starter kit of airbrush colors but if not, you can order them online. is a great source and the colors last a long time so you won’t have to buy that often.

            I know some people who use KopyKake brand and love them. I am going to try them in the future but for now, I use AmeriColor brand.

            Hope this helps!

  3. The finger tip over the opening trick is cool! I will need to use that the next time I use mine. I had no idea what the dropper was for. I don’t use it at all. I use a squeeze bottle filled with hot water and just squeeze it in there over a bowl white to clean it out. My table it to far from the sink to go back and forth with it.

  4. Sweetsugarbelle says:

    I sure wish I’d read this before I took my gun apart! Terrible terrible idea, lol!

  5. Oh what fun! I have an airbrush gun too…. only it’s in a can! LOL

  6. Love this simple post. Just pulled mine out of the box yesterday. The only weird thing is the directions don’t address that other glass looking thing in the box. What is it? Can’t wait to follow airbrush posts. Thanks Lisa.

  7. Hi Lisa! I have a question. Do you leave the hose attached when you store it? And do you let it sit overnight to dry out before you store it? I just bought an airbrush and I played with it for the first time tonight. I’m so glad that someone directed me to your post because I had just squirted water through the gun to clean it. When I plugged it with my finger just now like you suggested, I got some dirty water again, so that was a great tip!

    • Hi Debbie,
      I am so glad you got an airbrush gun. I take the hose off the air compressor and the gun when I store it. I don’t know if there is a right way or a wrong way but, I store mine like it was in the box when I bought it. I thought if it sat in a box on their shelf and that is the way they did it, then it should be good for my “Wendy.”
      Hope this helps!

      • Thanks for the quick reply! When I went to disconnect the hose it was really tight on, so I wasn’t sure if it was supposed to stay on. I’m glad to hear that it’s ok to disconnect it. Thanks!

        • I have a Pegasus Airbrush System. Just be sure to check the instructions for the brand you have. I was a little disappointed in the directions (or lack of) directions that came with my machine. I hope this info helps and let me know if you need anything else:)

  8. Reem Fadel says:

    Thank you for this tutorial. I was wondering whether this is a single action or double action airbrush, and which do you advise for a beginner and just for some light touches on a cake? Thank you :)

  9. gajanan damre says:

    professional air brush system i want to purches

  10. gajanan damre says:

    please give me contact no pune or bombay city in india and adress for purches professional air brush system

  11. After seeing this post and many cookiers using this tool, I decides to buy it! So lot of fun is ahead ! :)
    We found manual pretty useless. Your tutorial here was very good, and we assembled it very quickly, many thanks for that! :)
    That thing which you haven’t used, would be air filter (I just wrote it here, someone might ask, because there is no explanation in manual; I attached it between compressor and long hose).
    Greetings from Kuwait dear lady!!! :)

    • I found out that weird piece is the air filter just the other day. LOL I am working on a few new airbrush posts that I will share after I do a demo at Cookie Con in November. So hopefully it will answer even more questions for everyone. 😉 Hope you like your airbrush gun!

      • Oh I love it, instantly! <3
        Well, I've put that thing right away, today we assembled it, so I will try other time without, just to see if there is any difference 😀
        Today I've done pearl shine on cookies, I must say that cleaning after those sheen colors (I got all 3 packages from – is paiiinnnn :( I had to fill it with water I think million times, until every tiny shiny thing went out! :(

  12. Cindy Horst says:

    Thank you for the post. Do you needs special coloring for the gun, or just your normal stuff? (I notice the box in the photo is labeled “airbrush kit.” Thank you!

  13. hi i airbrush my cookies then when pople et them the color comes out on their hand is there a trick to that?

    • Try dusting them with a little flour once they are dry. I mean a very little amount of flour. Arty McGoo told us about this trick at Cookie Con last year. That is what she does to her painted cookies.

  14. Karen Manasco says:

    Oh my gosh. It is 3:34 a.m. and I have to work today, but when I suddenly woke up half an hour ago, all I could think about were cookies and airbrushes. I’m completed addicted to this idea!

    For years, I’ve longed to reproduce the cookies my aunt used to make during the holidays. She would cut out and bake basic shapes, then use frosting and a tiny star tip to frost every inch of the cookie. Though we scraped a majority of the frosting off, they were so beautiful, and it was hard to eat them. Fast forward to 2013, and I think now is the time to finally get off my duff and get busy making cookies.

    Things certainly have changed. Airbrushing cookies. Laser cutters and stencils. Wow. I’m so far behind!

    Thank you so much for this post and all the related posts. I cannot stop thinking about all the wonderful things one could do with this little gadget. Very impressive. Santa is going to hear about this, and soon!


    • I hope Santa puts one of these in your stocking this year! It sounds like your anunt was an amazign cookie artist. Do you have any photos of her cookies? I would love to see some and some of yours once you begin your decorating journey.

      PS-Go to sleep!! Hahahah

  15. Can u use this medium without the machine and just paint it on with a brush? I tried to paint it on some white chocolate big it kept smudging

  16. Thanks for the link. Does painting with a brush also work with the gold metallic duff airbrush paint

    • I am not sure Lucy. I have never used Duff’s products. You could always try it out on a practice cookie and see if you like it.

  17. Just a question, my sister is getting into cake decorating and she just graduated from college. I wanted to buy her an airbrush gun for her cake decorating but I don’t know the difference between a cake decorating airbrush and an airbrush used to paint model cars, etc. Is there a difference? Any info would be great, thanks!

    • Hi Alisha,
      I don’t make a lot of cakes that require airbrushing but, I can give you the name of a professional cake decorator that airburshes often. His name is Edward and he is an amazing person to talk to about airbrushing. His email is or you can call him at 817-297-2240.

      Let me know if you need anything else. We will find the answers together! 😉

  18. Hi Lisa,
    I tried using the coupon code at Karen’s Cookies, but it didn’t work. I’m guessing it’s expired since this post is originally from 2012. Do you happen to have an updated code or am I just out of luck? Thanks! :)

  19. Fatkidbakes says:

    Hi. I bought the exact same airbrush. I’m a newbie with airbrush and cake decorating in general. I just got mine recently and haven’t got the chance to buy airbrush color. And I did a project that needs the cake board with fondant airbrushed. I tried mixing a normal gel food coloring and a little gin and pouring it in tho the coloring compartment. I sprayed it and it worked fine. Can you tell me if I shouldn’t do this or if it’s ok. Im doing another project this week, requiring the use of the airbrush but my airbrush colors have not arrived. I hope you can help me with this. Thank you and more power.

    • Hi Fatkidbakes,

      You know, I am not sure about mixing regular food gel wutg gin to use in an airbrush gun. Personally, I wouldn’t do it because I am afraid to use anything except what the airbrush maker reccommends. I can give you the email information for Edward- He is the person that Karen and Mike at Karen’s Cookies purchased their machines from. He is very helpful and can answer this question better than I can.

  20. Hi,

    I have the Pegasus airbrush system and used it for the second time tonight. Thanks for the tutorial on cleaning ~ super helpful.
    When I airbrushing one of my cookies with sheen, a bunch of little droplets of sheen came out of the end instead of the nice smooth layer. Just on one cookie. I have no idea what happened. I was just wondering if that has ever happened to you and if you know what may have caused it. The other 15 cookies went perfectly.


  21. I purchased my Duff Airbrush from Michaels, looks pretty much like the one you’re using. Love it. This tutorial taught me everything I needed to know. Cleaning wasn’t so easy for me the 1st round but hopefully I’ll be better at it this weekend. Thanks a million, YOU’RE AWESOME!

  22. Lisa, I just used by airbrush for the first time today and your tutorial was very helpful. Thank you!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *