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Best art set for teens

Which art sets for teens are best?

One of the most important things parents can do for their kids is to support their creative endeavors. Art sets encourage kids of all ages to explore their creative sides. Multimedia art sets can include paints, pencils, inks, crayons, markers and more. 

If you want a set with pencils, crayons, watercolors and oils, take a look at the Art 101 Doodle and Color Portable Art Studio.

What to know before you buy an art set for teens

Art sets for teens should have aspects of both adult art sets and art sets for kids, depending on the teen’s age. These art sets should be complicated enough that older teenagers will be challenged to think creatively, while also being simple enough that younger teens can follow along and enjoy a fun art project. 

Drawing sets

These art sets are for drawing and sketching and usually include a large selection of colored pencils and standard pencils. Pencils are the most common starting point for new artists, and a set for them would include:

  • Graphite pencils: Look for drawing sets with a range of soft and hard graphite pencils.
  • Colored pencils: Because pencil colors do not blend as well as paints, you will want a drawing set for your teen that has a wide range of colors and hues.
  • Charcoal: Charcoal pencils or sticks draw darker and softer lines than graphite.
  • Extras: A drawing set for your teen should include erasers and pencil sharpeners.

Paint sets 

Paint sets usually contain watercolors, acrylics or oils. Look for a paint set that contains a good selection of paints, brushes and palettes.

  • Watercolors: These pastel colors are used to create simple washes of color that produce soft, gentle images. They are favored by younger teens because there is little prep and cleanup is easy. Watercolors are hard to control, and many teens move on quickly to other types of paints.
  • Acrylics: These versatile paints dry quickly and are easier to control than water or oil-based paints. They are nontoxic and add textures to paintings that watercolors cannot.
  • Oils: Oil paints are the richest of all paints and the hardest to master. They work best with brushes made from natural fibers instead of synthetics. Oil paints are easily mixed to create custom colors and more texture than any other type of paint.

What to look for in a quality art set for teens

Skill level

If your teens are complete beginners, you will want a simple art set that has an instruction guide. Beginners should start with smaller art sets with no more than 50 or 60 individual pieces. If your teens have some experience with creating artworks, they will benefit from bigger sets of 100 pieces or more.

Multimedia sets

For teens who want to experience art with different mediums, look for a multimedia art set that contains pencils, watercolors and acrylics. 

Art set contents

Look for art sets for your teen that have all the things needed to create works of art. This means a variety of pencils in different colors and hardnesses and brushes with a variety of tip shapes. Better sets come with more extras, like sketch pads, mini-canvases and easels. Better art sets for teens come in well-made and well-organized containers with places for everything inside. 

How much you can expect to spend on art set for teens

Basic art sets for younger teens will cost as little as $10. Middle-level art sets cost from $15-$25. Art sets with lots of high-quality materials and more than 100 pieces can be found for $25-$50. The biggest professional quality art sets for teens can easily cost $100 or more.

Art set for teens FAQ

Will my teen grow out of the art set I buy?

A. This depends on the teen. If they start with a beginner set and then really get into drawing and painting, they will likely want to move up to more specialized art products. If you buy a really good set that pays little attention to the artist’s age, it won’t be outgrown.

How do I store my teen’s art set?

A. The best place to store all types of art sets is in a cool, dry space.

What’s the best art set for teens to buy?

Top art set for teens

Art 101 Doodle and Color Portable Art Studio

What you need to know: A 142 piece multimedia art set that comes in a wood carrying case 

What you’ll love: This art set gives your teen 24 colored pencils, 24 watercolors, 24 oil paints and 60 crayons. Extras include three palettes, two paintbrushes, a sharpener and a color chart. The wooden case comes in cherry or gray wood.

What you should consider: Not everyone likes the balance between pencils, paints and crayons.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon

Top art set for teens for the money

Crayola Inspiration Coloring Set and Case

What you need to know: A 140 piece multimedia set that contains crayons, pencils and washable markers ideal for younger teens. 

What you’ll love: In addition to 64 crayons, 20 colored pencils and 20 washable markers, this set for young teens comes with 15 large paper sheets. All the tools fit neatly into a convenient 20 compartment carrying case for portability and ease of storage. This global art set has crayons from the USA, pencils from Brazil, paper from Thailand and a case made in Vietnam.

What you should consider: The case is made of heavy cardboard and needs gentle care to last.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon

Worth checking out

Castle Art Supplies Premium Quality Graphite Drawing Pencils and Sketch Kit 

What you need to know: A terrific art set for budding sketch artists and cartoonists. 

What you’ll love: Designed by artists, this art set brings together all the tools you need in a sturdy zippered case with pop-up sections. The set contains graphite, pastel and charcoal pencils in varying shades and hardnesses. Included in this kit are blenders, sharpeners and erasers. The easy-to-follow five-step tutorial contains tips and techniques that are a real bonus for artists just getting started. 

What you should consider: A 40 piece set will not be enough for a serious artist.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon


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David Allan Van writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.

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