How To Clean, Store And Maintain Paint Brushes
Paint brushes are an essential piece of equipment for any artist, professional or beginner. If you’re a newbie to the world of painting, you will need to learn to clean them. Keep paint off and store your brushes for extended use. Keeping clean your paint brushes may seem like a menial task, but it plays an essential role in the longevity of your tools. This guide will teach you how to clean, store and maintain paint brushes so they last as long as possible.
What are the benefits of cleaning your brushes?
It might not seem like a big deal, but to clean paint off your brushes can make a big difference. With plenty of use, paint and debris will accumulate. Not being able to remove paint off brushes, can lead to a streaky finish or brushstrokes that are thick and dark.
Follow these easy steps to clean your brushes after each painting session. This will help to get the best results the next time you pick up a brush.
Clean your brushes. Don't leave them dirty!
The best way to keep your painting brushes in tip-top condition is to wash them at the end of every session. Water is best for watercolor & acrylic paints. You can use a small amount of soap, but rinse properly and remove any excess soap. Run under warm water. For oil based paint, use a solvent-based cleaner for this task. With solvents, because of their strong odor, place in a ventilated area.
Do not immerse the brush in paint up to the ferrule. Wet paint is hard to remove from this area and, if it dries, even more difficult.
After cleaning, remove excess water, reshape the hairs into place with you fingers, and stand the brush upright on the handle to dry.
All you need is a container and some paper towels. The best storage container is a glass jar with a lid, because it won’t react with the solvent or dry paint residue. Some things you can use as containers are: an old jar, a plastic container, or an empty food container. Once dried, try hard to work away and paint that might remain. It's a process, but you want to save your brushes life.
How to store your clean brushes
Some materials for paintbrush storage can be found at home. Use a cupcake liner for protection. Once your brush is clean and nearly dry, prep it for storage. Askew brush bristles don't put a tool out of commission.
- Create a nice, clean space to keep them in.
- Don't mix up the brushes! Use the color coded liners to group the brushes by size.
- After you soak, let dry and shape the bristles by hand.
- Store brushes with bristles facing up, handle down. Check the ferrule (metal ring) for any wear and tear.
- Buy good quality. They will last you for years.
Whether just starting out with painting, or a pro, proper care of your brushes is important. It will help them last longer, perform better and keep them look natural and new. Hopefully this article has helped you find some useful tips to clean and maintain your paint brushes! For any questions, please contact us.
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