Are you planning to do some DIY wall painting but can't decide which brushes you'll need?
When it comes to painting, you're only as good as your brush. Whether you're a novice or a seasoned professional, the brush you're using to paint your wall usually determines the end result. This is why it's a good idea to look for the best brushes for the job at hand.
Best Brushes for Painting Walls: What to Look for
Selecting the right brush for the right job can be hard, especially for first-time DIY painters. There are four categories to consider when choosing the best wall painting brushes for you.
These categories are material, shape, size, and quality.
The first thing you have to consider when choosing the best brush for painting walls is the material the bristles are made of.
Brushes can be made of various materials but the three main ones are natural, synthetic, or foam.
Natural brushes often called "China brushes", are made of natural animal hair like boar, horse, or badger. This material absorbs oil-based paint quickly and leaves a smooth finish, depending on its quality. Natural brushes can be cleaned and reused many times.
Synthetic brushes are made of nylon or polyester or a combination of both. This material loads up and releases water-based (latex) paint very well and leaves a smooth even finish. Similar to natural brushes, synthetic brushes can also be cleaned and reused many times.
Foam brush heads are made of foam or other sponge-like material. They generally absorb, hold, and release paint very well regardless of what type of paint it is. Although foam brushes can be cleaned and re-used (with a little bit more effort), they're usually one-use only.
So, which brush material is best for painting walls?
While natural and foam brushes can still be used, synthetic brushes are generally better for painting walls. They load just enough paint, leave a smooth finish without leaving behind stray fibers (unlike natural brushes), and can be washed and reused many times (unlike foam brushes).
A brush's shape should help you paint surfaces better and quicker.
For painting walls, you have two main options. These are flat brushes and angled brushes.
Flat brushes have an even squared edge tip which lets you use them flat against the wall. They can load up a lot of paint and are best used if you want to cover as much of your wall in as little time.
Angled brushes have an angled tip. This type of brush makes it easier to apply paint close to another surface (such as window trim) or when painting anything with grooved walls.
So which brush shape is better?
Unfortunately, this question ends in a draw. The best brush shape will depend on what part of your wall you're trying to paint.
Brushes can come in a variety of sizes and will depend on which part of your wall you're painting.
Smaller 2-2.5 inch brushes are great for cutting into corners.
Bigger 5-6 inch brushes can help you cover surfaces quicker.
Choosing the right sized brush(es) will depend on the size of your wall's surface and the level of accuracy you need to paint it, such as when you're painting next to a ceiling or other section of wall with a different color.
When shopping for brushes, it's often tempting to simply get the cheapest ones and save a few bucks in the process. Leave the pricier brushes for the professionals, right?
The thing is:
When painting anything, the quality of your brushes can determine how good your results are going to be.
While it's true that better brushes usually come with bigger price tags, they also make your work easier, leave better results, and can last several years with proper care after use – just ask anyone who's had quality brushes for years.
Best Brushes for Painting Walls: Our Suggestions
So, now that you know what to look for when choosing wall painting brushes, what brushes do we recommend?
1. Exterior Walls: Riverdale Chinex Angle Sash
The Riverdale Chinex Angle Sash by Premier has a chiseled (angled) edge that makes it ideal for cutting into window sills and corners while still being usable for general flat wall painting.
Developed by the Dupont company, Chinex is a modified nylon bristle that mimics the qualities of natural bristle brushes.
Since paint dries faster outside, this brush lets you clean off dry paint better without getting damaged, unlike natural bristle brushes.
2. Staining Decks and Sidings: Deck Boss or 4-6 Inch Natural Bristle Flat Brush
When it comes to staining decks and sidings, you can't go wrong with the Deck Boss by Perdura. Its size makes it ideal for saving time on large surfaces while its quality synthetic bristles work great with water and oil-based paints, stains, sealers, epoxy, and varnish for wood and concrete – plus you can attach it to a pole for better reach.
If you're painting on wood like rough sawn cedar which tend to damage staining brushes, you can replace your Deck Boss with a 4-6 inch natural bristle flat brush instead.
3. Interior Walls: Premier Montauk
For interior walls, you want your finish to be as smooth as possible.
The Premier Montauk Paint Brush is made of Dupont Tynex and Orel filaments which carry more paint to the tip of the brush while leaving a smoother finish. This brush is also stiffer and keeps its shape better than ordinary nylon brushes which means it's easier to clean after use.
The Montauk's angled tip lets you cut into corners while still doing a great job at general flat painting.