Tips on using an airbrush machine for cookies

I absolutely love my airbrush machine. In this post I’ll try help you understand your airbrush machine a little more, with the do’s and don’ts that I have experienced.

After you have spent hours icing your biscuits the last thing you need is to spray them with your airbrush gun and the pattern or design is blurry and/or smudged. So frustrating.

When you purchase the airbrush machine, always read the instructions carefully. We do stock an airbrush machine in our online shop.

  1. Securing your stencil
    I also like to use a ‘Stencil Buddy.’  A stencil buddy is a plastic frame, that holds the stencil in place. The frame comes apart, part A & B. There is a magnet in each corner, the two frames stick to one another holding the stencil in place. Part A & B are slightly different heights to accommodate the height of your iced biscuit.  I like to use part A at the bottom, the stencil then sits snug on the iced biscuit, this helps prevent any under spray (no bleeding / smudging) We stock the Stencil Buddy in our shop. Take a look at the video below.
  2. What pressure to use
    Lightly pull on the trigger. Pressure control is crucial to getting a crisp image on your icing. Lightly pull back and spray the stencil design.
    Pulling too hard causes a blast of air to come out the gun, causing the colour to go under the stencil design, which will create a blurred look.
    To create darker colours, go over the colour a few times to deepen the colour.
  3. Spraying distance
    Hold the gun at roughly a 90 degree angle and spray about 2-3cm away from the design. Think…‘Low & slow.’ Which means be close (low) to the stencil and slow meaning pulling gently on the trigger.  I keep saying this in my head while I airbrush.
  4. Airbrush colours
    I use the cake flora airbrush colours. We find other brands either too watery or too thick.  If you get, the primary colours red, blue and yellow you can then mix up your own colours blue + yellow = green.  We have a great airbrush starter kit, which has 7 x 10ml airbrush colours, a stencil buddy, a how to airbrush card and a backgrounds bundle pack.  I use pearl sheen to tone down a colour, (dilute it) so that the colours are not too bright. But you can control the brightness of a colour by controlling the trigger and not releasing too much colour.
  5. We also stock a range of 30ml airbrush colours, so you don’t need to purchase the large 150ml bottles.  I always pour the colour back in the bottle when I am finished unless I have mixed it with other colours. Sheen colours have a tendency to block the gun, if your guns starts to splutter, clean the end of the gun and carry on.
  6. Cleaning your airbrush gun
    You don’t need expensive airbrush cleaners, I simply run water through my gun until it runs clear.  I add some vodka, to help dislodge any stubborn colour.  Darker colours are harder to clean out, so airbrush with lighter colours first then move onto your darker colours.  Always clean your gun straight after using it, don’t let the colour sit in your gun for a long period of time.
  7. Silkscreen
    Using a silkscreen helps prevent, blurry images and smudged designs.  You still need to be careful when spraying, you can’t blast the colour out, it helps but it’s not a miracle worker.  These are available in our shop. Click here 
    The order
    Part A of the stencil buddy down first
    The stencil design
    The silkscreen
    Part B of the stencil buddy
  8. Depending on the colour, you may have to rinse the silkscreen after each use. Simply run under cold water and pat dry.  Make sure it’s completely dry so you don’t add water droplets to your iced cookies.
    I always use my silkscreen for ‘flappy’ stencils, like stripes etc. It holds the stencil firmly against the icing, preventing any movement.
  9. Icing your biscuit for airbrushing
    When you airbrush a biscuit, the icing on the biscuit has to be as level and even as possible, if there are dips then there is a chance that the design will bleed (blurred design)
    Also if the icing is not 100% dry, you’ll find your design blurring at a later stage, as the water in the icing will make the colours run.