The best watercolour paints allow you to create washes of transparent colour that can be layered to create depth and complexity. The unpredictable way the pigments interact with water can lead to surprising and beautiful effects, helping you to produce unique and evocative art, so they’re worth trying even if it’s not your normal painting media.

To compile this list, we’ve been road-testing as many liquid and solid pan watercolour paints as we could get our hands on. We’ve got hands-on with a range of products to assess them in terms of how well they work, how easy they are to apply, the range of colours on offer and overall value for money. In our list below we’ve included paints that will suit beginners, pros and everyone in between.