8 Painting Tips and Tricks that will make painting SO much easier!

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So, maybe fun is stretching it a bit, but these tips will certainly make painting easier and much more enjoyable.  But before you even start painting, use these tips to choose your paint color and then make sure you’ve prepped your room like a pro!

I think you either love to paint or you hate to paint… or you tolerate it.  Ha!

Anyway, over the years, I ‘ve painted quite a few rooms… like when I painted my dining room orange and then white with a modern herringbone stencil, or my office hot pink and then white with a cool geometric sharpie design. I’ve discovered some very helpful tips and tricks to make the process easier, and I couldn’t live another day without sharing them with you guys.  I felt like I was totally holding out on you.

So here goes.

Painting a room can be such a chore.  Here are 8 Painting Tips and Tricks that will blow your mind and make painting a room so much easier and enjoyable!

Tip #1:  Hammer some holes in the lip of your paint can.

When you pour the paint, it can go everywhere.  It drips all over the sides and then dries hard as a rock on the edges.  When that happens, not even King Kong himself could pound that lid down hard enough to close it securely.

Painting a room can be such a chore!  Here are 8 Painting Tips and Tricks that will blow your mind and make painting a room actually fun!

So grab your hammer and a large-ish nail and poke a few holes there in the lip. Or the divot.  Or the well.  I wasn’t sure what to call it, but I think you get it, right?

See… right there.

Painting a room can be such a chore!  Here are 8 Painting Tips and Tricks that will blow your mind and make painting a room actually fun!

mind blowing painting tips and tricks-3

If you do that, the paint will just drip, drip, drip back down into the can.  It’s magic!

mind blowing painting tips and tricks-12

Then, if you want, you can wipe away the excess paint. Or not.  Either way, that lid is going to go on much more easily.

Tip #2: Use aluminum foil to line your paint trays.

I’m not sure where I saw this little tip, but I thiiiiink it might have been from Virginia of livelovediy.com.

I usually just buy the liners, but in a pinch, say… when I get ants in my pants and want to paint a wall and run to the garage to grab everything only to realize that I’m out of liners?

This totally works.


It’s a no mess clean up.

A beautiful thing.

Tip #3: Use a paper plate as a drip pan for your can.

Ok. Now this tip is a game changer.  It’s like waking up from a zombie infested nightmare and finding nothing but kittens and rainbows.

I came across this tip quite by accident.  I just needed something to protect my floors since I never use dropcloths – don’t wag any fingers, now.  So far, I’ve been quite successful at wiping up paint.  If I’m painting in a room that has carpet, I do grab one of those inexpensive plastic or paper ones. So to say I never use a dropcloth is misleading.  I do.  Sometimes.

Painting a room can be such a chore!  Here are 8 Painting Tips and Tricks that will blow your mind and make painting a room actually fun!

These Dixie plates {<=amazon affiliate link}  fit paint cans perfectly.  It’s like the designers had a secret meeting to come up with a disposable paint drip pan and just never told anybody.

Until I came along… and now I’m telling EVERYBODY!  MWAHAHAHA!

Tip #4: Use a HANDy Paint Pail® for cutting in.

This HANDy Paint Pail {<=amazon affiliate link} is irreplaceable.  I couldn’t paint a freaking wall anymore if I didn’t have this.  It’s my right arm when I’m toting a paintbrush. I’m so totally not exaggerating here.

Painting a room can be such a chore!  Here are 8 Painting Tips and Tricks that will blow your mind and make painting a room actually fun!

You see, when you’re up on a ladder and trying to scooch around and have a paint brush in your hand, you are in danger of a couple of things.  A) loosing your balance and B) swiping paint all over the walls and curtains and whatever else is unfortunate enough to lie in the wake of your brush.

But not with this miracle invention. It’s like having a third hand.

See where that brush it?  There’s a magnet by the handle and it grabs the paintbrush like they were love at first sight.  Inseparable.  Until you separate them, that is.

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It, too, is a beautiful thing.

Tip #5: Use your Handy Paint Pail to wipe your paint stick.

So you might be thinking:

Whatever, Gwen.

But no.  Hear me out.

Painting a room can be such a chore!  Here are 8 Painting Tips and Tricks that will blow your mind and make painting a room actually fun!

If you’ve ever stirred a full can of paint and tried to wipe the paint stick off on the edge of the paint can, you know what I’m talking about.

It’s just not humanly possible.

But, the depth of the Handy Pail is such that wiping off paint sticks becomes a simple and delightful task. Easy-peasy.

You’re welcome.

Tip# 6: Keep a damp, lint-free cloth at the ready.

Drips gonna drip.  That’s all I’m sayin’.

Painting a room can be such a chore!  Here are 8 Painting Tips and Tricks that will blow your mind and make painting a room actually fun!

At least at my house.  So, by keeping a damp, lint-free cloth at the ready, I’m ready. For the drips…because they are just going to happen whether you tape it out and lay fifteen dropcloths or not.

The damp rag will wipe up acrylic paint and make it like those drips never dared to drop a dollop.  If you don’t have a rag, a damp paper towel will ok too.

And this goes for stray strokes on the ceiling.  Catch them quick, and they’ll wipe right off!

Tip #7: Play some really good music or listen to a great podcast.

I don’t really think I need to explain why, but I’m going to anyway.

Painting a room can be such a chore!  Here are 8 Painting Tips and Tricks that will blow your mind and make painting a room actually fun!

If music is the food of love, then podcasts are the food of happiness.

Make it fun.  Find something entertaining and the time will zip by, right?

I love Entrepreneur on Fire and Amy Porterfield.  But you don’t have to go the business route.  There are tons of great techy, educational, or entertaining podcasts out there.  Just go for what will keep your attention and provide some enjoyment while you swipe, roll, wipe.

Tip #8:  Use the best brushes and rollers and paint that you possibly can.

Oh, you can buy thrifty furniture and clip coupons and be a real deal finder, but when it comes to paint brushes and rollers or paint…

do. not. skimp.Painting a room can be such a chore!  Here are 8 Painting Tips and Tricks that will blow your mind and make painting a room actually fun!If you take away anything from this post, know this.  Using quality brushes, rollers and paints do make a difference… like it might mean only having to do two coats instead of three.  Yeah, I know.

My favorite? I LOVE Purdy rollers, and I only use either the Purdy XL Cub or the Wooster ShortCut. {<= amazon affiliate link}

The XL Cub is my favorite, but if you don’t want to go out and spend 15 bucks on a brush, the Wooster is a great alternative.   I love the small handles because they fit right in the palm of my hand, and it’s super comfortable which helps me be more precise when I’m cutting in.

As far as paint, I’m a Sherwin Williams girl.  My favorite is the Emerald because it covers seriously well.  I used it to paint over the HOT pink in my office and the Pear Green in my Foyer.  This stuff is amazing. The stuff dreams are made of and no one is paying me to say that.

So, those are all my painting tips and tricks, but I have this nagging feeling that I’m leaving something out.

Painting a room can be such a chore.  Here are 8 Painting Tips and Tricks that will blow your mind and make painting a room so much easier and enjoyable!

Do you have any painting tips for The Bold Crew?

Let me know down in the comments below!

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  1. I am a painting fanatic and I cannot BELIEVE I’ve never heard of the Handy Paint Pail!! I feel like my life has been forever changed for the better. I can’t wait to snag one for myself. Also, LOVING the holes in the paint can idea. How have I never thought of these things before. I guess I better find something to paint so I can try them out. :o) Thanks for sharing.

    1. OH MY GOSH! It will change your life! I’m totally not exaggerating.

      Thanks so much, Leah!

  2. Great tips! I love all of them. I too am a Sherwin girl. Best paint I’ve ever worked with. I’ll never go back. But, I do have a question about the finish…I see in one of your pictures you are using Satin. With young kids around the house I have not been able to make the switch from semi gloss to the seemingly popular Satin finish. Semi gloss seems so much easier to wipe clean. What are your thoughts? I’d love to have your opinion.


    1. Hi Nikki! So nice to meet a fellow SW girl!

      I haven’t had any problems using the Satin Finish. It seems to wipe clean just fine, but I’d maybe get a sample and test it out for sure!

      Thanks for stopping by!


  3. Hi there!
    This is a really good post, with super painting tips – I will pin it here: pinterest.com/twopluscute/decor-tips-tricks-hacks/ . 🙂

  4. So I am planning on painting my pantry doors red, any tips? The sample spots I painted needed 3 coats to get good coverage and still a bit uneven. Red is so hard, looking for barn red tried SW “red barn“ but to brown suggestions?

    1. Red is touch, Regina! I always just buy samples like you did. For dark colors, I always have to paint at least 3 coats, but when I started using SW’s Emerald paint, I just had to do 2 and that was with Cyberspace… a very dark, almost black navy. It’s really worth the extra money not to have to do that extra coat or 2. But I’m not certain about red. It’s always trial and error!


  5. i just completed painting my own home and my daughter and son in laws home, all the rooms and trim work. I agree the Handy Paintpail is a must but I have to say that I much prefer the Whizz brand of rollers and paintbrushes. They have a brush called the Wedge that is amazing at cutting into corners and trimming. Thanks for all of the tips! I am a fan of some really good music to pass the time!

    1. I will have to check out those brushes, Kathy! Thanks so much for the tip!

  6. I have used several of these tricks and I know they work. The magnetic paint pail is a new one. Sounds fantastic. I use paint pails but had no idea they had magnetic ones. I also use and love the nails in the top of the paint can. I only disagree with one point: Sherwin Williams paint. I think it is great paint but I am a Benjamin Moore gal myself. Expensive, but you get excellent coverage and you can’t blast it off the walls. Just me though.

    1. That pail is amazing, Regina! I have used BM myself and agree that it is incredible paint!

  7. When painting with red I was advised many years ago to do an Undercoat of grey first, it really makes a difference to the depth of the red.

  8. My painting tips are ziplock bags. Put your brushes and rollers in ziplock bags at the end of the day in the fridge. It saves lots of time on cleanup at the end of the day if you are doing a lot of painting and multiday projects. Also, I use the plastic peanut butter jars (i.e. empty Kraft or Skippy jars) for leftover paint ( at the bottom of your can, or for even using during my painting job, if one can’t afford the special paint can you mention in your blog. The best thing is they have the lid that screws on tightly so the paint keeps nicely when you take a break. Also, cleaning the walks beforehand does make a difference.

    1. Glad to see zip lock bags mentioned- really works when you are using several brushes or interrupted. Be sure to push out air, or just wrap tightly with plastic wrap! Ha- don’t forget when you are finished to wash out those brushes- Dawn dish detergent is awesome. Old blankets make wonderful drop cloths- those plastic ones are dangerous (slippery) and messy as paint just sits on top- I have invested in nice canvas drop cloths and love them!

  9. put a rubber band around your paint can (so it goes across the top) and wipe your brush on that rather than the side of the can. 🙂

  10. A cheap trick for getting excess paint off of brushes and the paint stick is to put a big rubber band (like the kind you get on bunches of veggies) over the top and bottom of the paint can. It’s a taut, straight line, and the excess drips right back into the can.

  11. Got 2 more tips for ya;
    1 I always use latex gloves to paint, end of the day, I’ll just grab my roller or brush and by pulling the glove off, I’ll pull it over the roller, 1 movement, kinda close it by rolling the edges, next days is still fine, no cleaning!
    2 best tip I ever got, if you want to paint red or bright pink, fiiiiiiiirst put a layer of grey!
    most of the time, the red or pink will be covered in just 1 layer, without all the ugly coming through.

  12. When cutting in by the ceiling, i take a screw driver and score it first. Your brush will run along the edge without using tape. Much faster and no bleeding under tape because of textured walls.

      1. Marilou– when you score with the screwdriver, do you score the ceiling or the wall? I’m thinking ceiling. Am I right?

  13. Whoa! I’ve never thought of using tin foil to line paint trays, but it makes so much sense!! I cringe to pay 79 cents plus for each tray and they never fully wash out, but aluminum foil would line a tray for just a few pennies. What a great idea; thanks so much for sharing! We’re doing a ton of painting these days as we have a new house: I’ll definitely be incorporating your tip!

    1. You’re so welcome, Katelin!

      Good luck with all that painting!



  14. Thanks for the great tips. I’m going to follow all this as they will come in pretty handy when I paint my bedroom. Thanks again.

  15. The absolute best brush cleaner I’ve found thus far: Tide pods. Take a few, dissolve them in a pump dispenser bottle with water and pump a little on your brush before rinsing. Pods for whatever reason work better than ride liquid but ride liquid works better than dish soap.

  16. Although I love your idea of putting holes in the rim of a paint tin to ensure the lid goes back on I prefer to decant the paint directly from the tin by means of a small jug, thus leaving the rim totally clean and clear from drips and spills, allowing me to put the lid back on straight away and preserve the paint.

  17. This looks so amazing, Gwen!! Well done! I think my favorite part is using a magnet to hold your paint brush. I have tips on painting – feather out the paint along the edges that you can’t keep wet and takes less time to paint in larger areas. Makes the whole thing look so elegant and homey at the same time. Thanks for blogging your inspiring journey! I really appreciate the inspiration and information I get from your blog. Recently I’ve used a service like hammerheads for major paintings which helped me a lot. Link

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