Which paint brush should I use?
If you're confused by all the different types of paint brushes - you're not alone! There is a huge selection of paint brushes on the market and it can be tricky to know which one is the right one.
Brush shapes and sizes should be matched to the job - wide brushes for large, flat surfaces like walls and ceilings, narrow ones for narrow surfaces like cornice, mouldings and trim.
What size paint brush?
It's always handy to have a set of paint brushes that range in width from narrow to wide. You will find these handy whatever the paint job.
Obviously a larger paint brush will cover a larger area and cut down on time spent painting, but a narrow paint brush will allow you to 'cut in' or detail around frames and edges, which is important for a professional finish.
A narrow paint brush is used on narrow or detailed areas, such as around door or window frames, when painting chair or detailed table legs, and on detailed panels.
While both natural and synthetic bristles work well with all types of paints, natural bristles tend to lose some of their resilience in water paints.
Which paint brush?
Easy to clean
Now there are 'easy to clean' paint brushes on the shelves, and these brushes are exactly that. Simply rinse under warm water and brushes are clean.
Paint brushes with long bristles offer even more spreadability and leave a smooth finish to paint projects.
GOOD TO KNOW
Loose bristles coming out of the brush and drying on your project are a headache you can prevent. Just smack a clean, dry brush several times against the palm of your hand. Loose bristles stick out from the end of the brush and are easily plucked before you dip the brush in the can.
Angled paint brush
Finally, a paint brush that makes it easier to paint edges. An angled paint brush allows you to paint neatly where walls and ceiling join, or under cornice and crown moulding.
'Cutting in' is the process of painting a straight line around ceilings, windows or door frames before rolling on the paint with a paint roller.
Natural bristle brush
Use a natural bristle brush for applying varnish, sealer and adhesives. The stiff bristles allow for easy, smooth application of thicker, more viscous products.
The raw wood handle allows for easy cleaning with solvent-based cleaners.
The best paint brush to buy
Your final guide in selecting a paint brush suited to the work is one that feels comfortable to hold and a paint brush that is full and thick and will not shed as you paint. Fan the bristles against the palm of your hand to check that they are firmly glued.
Paint brushes for techniques and effects
Artist's paint brushes
Indispensible for painting small details on large projects and for touching up. I always treat myself to a decent set of artist's paintbrushes from time to time - you can never have too many!
Don't buy cheap artist's paint brushes as these tend to loose their shape very quickly and can't seem to hold the paint as well as a quality brush. Natural bristles are the best.
Badger or softening brush
Use for paint techniques, paint effects on walls and furniture.
You don't need to buy genuine badger hair brushes, soft synthetic brushes work just as well - and will result in less shaved badges running around!
A pot scubbing brush or stiff toilet brush makes the perfect stippling brush - and won't cost you a fortune.
For small projects - use a toothbrush.
You'll need a whitewashing brush for walls and floors. It spreads whitewash quickly. But don't spend a fortune when a soft bristle broom head will work just as well.
This stiff, rounded brush comes in various sizes, depending upon the size and scale of a stencilling project.