Home improvement does not always have to cost an arm and a leg. Sometimes it’s just a few tins of paint, and of course a paintbrush. If you’ve found yourself starting to gather your art supplies to create do-it-yourself gifts or projects, you’re going to want to use a specific shade and color palette, and that means a clean brush. We’re here to guide you on how to clean paint brushes so that they are always primed and ready for the next project.
First: The first thing you need to do is to get yourself a bucket filled with soap and water. It makes it a bit easier to have warm water ready, and as far as soap goes, a mild bar of soap or dishwashing detergent can do the trick. You shouldn’t submerge the brush, rather swish it across the pail and either use a brush comb or your hands to get rid of all the paint. You want to start close to the base and slowly work your way up to the ends of the paintbrush.
Second: Once the paintbrush is largely free of any remnants of paint, rinse it off with running tap water or in another bucket of clean water. Flex the bristles with your hands then flick it towards the bottom of the sink or the sides of the pail. You’ll know your paintbrush is thoroughly cleaned when the water runs clear from the brush.
Third: Now would be a good time to shake off all the excess water from your paintbrush before you move on to proper storage. Prepare heavy paper like a two-ply paper towel, newspaper, or its original packaging to wrap your paintbrush in. Doing so will help keep the shape of the paintbrush intact without its outer edges flaring out, and to prevent it from collecting dust. To dry, you can hang it with the bristles pointing down or lay it flat on a surface. It is important to be sure that no weight is placed on the bristles to keep it good as new.
When it comes to paintbrushes, it’s smart to invest in a good one that may be slightly expensive than to have a collection of cheap ones that would just build up your frustration. It will also be cheaper in the long run than to spend money on the cost of replacements. The key is to maintain it through proper cleaning. And to save yourself the headache, it is best done while the paint is still wet. The last thing you want are hardened bristles that will inevitably shorten the brush’s life span.
Save yourself some paint and don’t overload your paintbrush when painting. A good rule of thumb is only to dip your paintbrush to a width of two fingers. This way, paint doesn’t reach and stick on to the ferrule, or the base of the paintbrush, which is a whole lot tougher to clean. And when you’re about done for the day, scrape all the excess from the paintbrush on to the rim of the can.
You’d want your paintbrush to be free of paint as much as possible, so you might want to brush it off some cloth, paper towel, or newspaper just to be sure. You can also opt to use a brush comb to straighten out the bristles while you’re at it.
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