There are a few signs you can look for that indicate that you’re working with a true painting professional: painting skill, a focus on surface preparation, and keeping a clean work environment and process.
That list isn’t complete, but it’s a good start.
While we can’t transmit an increased skill level to you through your computer screen or phone, we can offer a couple of DIY home painting tips that will keep your next project a little cleaner.
Working Cleaner Rather Than Harder During Your Next Painting Adventure
Tip #1 Prep the Space Before You Start
As important as surface prep is (scraping, sanding, patching, etc…), that’s not what we’re talking about here. We’re thinking of steps like removing fixtures and outlet covers, pulling the furniture to the center of the room, covering the floor with clean drop cloths, and masking sections you know could get messy. This initial investment of time will allow you to work faster and without distraction, and it also protects your belongings from splatters, drips, or sometimes inevitable accidents.
Tip #2 Use a Rubber Band to Neatly Remove Excess Paint
Typically you wipe the excess paint from your brush on the rim of the can. This can be fine if you’re very careful to not let it pool and begin to dry where the lid will need to sit. Here’s an easier tip: stretch a rubber band over the can, top to bottom, so the band stretches across the center of your can’s mouth. You can now wipe the extra here and let it just drip right back into the remaining paint. Nice and neat.
Tip #3 – Use a Can Coaster
Forgetfully setting your can down on a surface only to later discover a ring of paint is frustrating to say the least. Carry a paper plate in your tool kit, then set it down first as a coaster for your can.
Tip #4 – Protect Yourself from Drips
The first line of defense against drips when you’re painting overhead is to not overload your paint brush. As an extra level of protection, however, you can take a small coffee can lid, cut a slot in the middle, and slide your brush’s handle through. This creates a nice little shield under the bristles.
Tip #5 – Making a Tiny Touch-Up? Use an Artist’s Brush
Many homeowners think they have to use a full-sized paint brush for every project. If you are touching up a tiny blemish or scratch, why not scale things down with a small artist’s brush? It can make your life a little simpler.
Did you see our article about choosing the right brush for your painting project? This is another important way to help you effectively paint like a pro. Or, at least more like a pro…