8 Best House Painting Hacks of 2021

hands holding blue paint can

by Rocky Vuong - September 13, 2021

Painting your house yourself doesn’t have to equal crooked lines, uneven surfaces and floors speckled with flecks of paint. 

With these simple house painting hacks, you can give your home a professional finish every time. They will make the painting process faster, easier and cleaner – so you don’t have to spend hours cleaning up after yourself. 

Use these easy painting hacks, to make the process faster and less messy — and ensure a fresh, modern look for your home.

1. Soak brushes in fabric softener to keep them soft

Every DIY home painter has experienced the horrors of a day-old paint brush, with stiff bristles that makes round two nearly impossible. 

To remedy this, we suggest this painting hack: 

  1. Rinse brush thoroughly under water (without soap)
  2. Mix half a cup of fabric softener with a three litres of warm water
  3. Swish brushes in the mixture for at least 10 seconds
  4. Lay the brushes flat, or hang them on a peg to dry overnight overnight 

This simple brush hack will ensure that the bristles don’t develop a bend and will retain their usefulness the next time you want to paint. Also, there’s no need to rinse before using the brush again, as the softener actually helps distribute paint more evenly.

2. Preserve your brush with a glove

Once you’ve finished painting for the day, or even during your lunch break, you can keep your brush from drying out by storing it in a plastic glove.

If you’re wearing gloves, then you can simply grab the bristles with your gloved hand and then pull the glove over the wet bristles. Be sure to twist-tie around the handle to keep the air out for the best results. 

Make sure to lay the brush flat, or hang it by the handle to prevent damaging the bristles if you’re storing it overnight.

3. Use cardboard to protect floors

Most people like to use drop cloths or plastic sheets to protect floors when painting the interior of homes. However, they’re often too big, slippery, clumsy and can add to the mess – especially when you need to move them around while they’re still covered in wet paint. 

That’s why we suggest using cardboard on the floors instead. You can set it tight to the wall and slide it with your foot as you work your way around the room to prevent further mess. Plus, you can recycle it, which is even better.

4. An egg-cellent painting hack

Whenever you’re painting something small that needs to be raised off the surface to get to the base and edges, you can use an empty egg carton.

Simply cut a couple of egg cartons in half and use them to support the frame’s edges. You can reuse them several times or just throw them away when you’re done. Waste not want not, after all!

5. Rub petroleum jelly on small areas you don’t want painted hand using petroleum jelly

A little bit of Vaseline can go a long way when it comes to protecting areas from paint.

Using a small amount of petroleum jelly on a cotton swab, go over all the areas you don’t want painted, like door hinges and screws. This will help to protect them from paint while you go to work with your brush.

You can also run petroleum jelly along the seals of your doors and windows to prevent them from sticking.

6.  Keep Q-tips handy for mistakes

Paint spills and splashes are inevitable when painting your home, so it’s always worth keeping some Q-tips handy for the clean-up.

Keep some Q-tips on-hand – either in your pocket or toolkit – in paint emergencies where you quickly need to wipe away a small splash of paint. 

You can also use them to touch-up imperfections on newly-painted walls, without having to whip out your paintbrush again.

7. Use plastic wrap to prevent mess

When painting around large, awkward items you want to keep clean, like a toilet or a sink, use this painting hack from the pros: wrap it with plastic cling wrap to prevent drips from destroying its finish.

For an extra tight wrap, choose a wrap with an adhesive backing. You can usually find this at Bunnings, or your local hardware store. This will help it stick to the surface and prevent pesky spills from inching their way in. Once you’ve finished your painting job, simply unwrap for the perfect finish.

8. Splash-free paint can lids

paint brush resting on paint can

Ever hammer down a paint can lid only to have paint splatter everywhere? This little paint hack will ensure that it never happens again!

All you need to do is grab a 5-in-1 tool and use the sharp end to punch a few holes through the groove of the can’s rim. The holes will allow excess paint to drain back into the can, so you won’t have to deal with paint splashing ever again. The lid will cover the holes and make an airtight seal. 

Pro tip: if you don’t have a 5-in-1 tool, you can punch some holes using a hammer and nail.

Want more expert painting tips and tricks? Check out our Comprehensive Interior Painting Guide, or find out what tools you need to paint your home. Alternatively, you can leave the painting to the professionals and book Newline Painting’s House Painting service online today.

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