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Which Masking Tape Is Best for DIY Home Painting?

Want to give your home a facelift with some fresh coat of paint, but you’re not sure which kind of masking tape is best for painting? You’ve come to the right place! We have all the information you need to know about which kind of tape is the best for painting the inside of your home.

Masking Tape

Once you have all the information, the task of painting your home’s interior without the help of professional painters will not seem easy. We’ve rounded up some of the best types of masking tape to use. As well as some tips and tricks to help you on your DIY way.

What Type of Tape Do I Use for DIY Home Painting?

Two of the most common types of tape are masking tape and painter’s tape. While these are the most commonly used tape for indoor painting, there are so many different types and variations of these two to choose from. It just depends on the job at hand.

There are so many different kinds of tape out there. Such as rolls of masking tape, duct tape, adhesive tape, cellophane tape – the list goes on and on.

For painting, you are going to want to choose a variation of either masking or painter’s tape. These will be easier on your walls and can be better for any existing surface paint or texture that you don’t want to rip off.

Masking Tape VS Painter’s Tape

Masking Tape VS Painter’s TapeView in gallery

Masking tape and painter’s tape are actually the same kind of tape, there are just different degrees of them. You’ll find this kind of tape is extra sticky. It’s great for super delicate surface, great for creating sharp lines or even preferred for ceilings.

Painter’s tape might be a little easier to remove since it’s specifically made for painting. But masking tape is great because it has a super sticky adhesive that will not budge even while painting texture over it.

If you are painting on a super delicate surface, it is advised to not use masking tape for the job. Try using painter’s tape so that you are sure that nothing gets stuck to it in the process of removing it.

Masking Tape Vs Duct Tape

Masking Tape Vs Duct TapeView in gallery

Masking tape is known for its lightweight yet powerful adhesive strength that makes this tape so versatile. It’s great to use for painting and other household repairs or projects that require this kind of bonding.

It is even a little cheaper than painter’s tape, so if you are on a budget, you can make this kind of tape work for your indoor painting project. But keep in mind it could bleed through the top or bottom edge if you aren’t careful.

Duct tape is a super strong tape that is most commonly used for industrial jobs or worksite jobs. It’s perfect for repairing things like leaking pipes or torn air conditioner vents. But it may be way too strong for you to use in a painting setting. It will just take some paint along with it, and if you are working with a delicate surface to begin with, this could cause some major trouble with the overall job. Masking tape is the tape to use if you are having to decide between that and duct tape.

Masking Tape Vs Packing Tape

Masking Tape Vs Packing TapeView in gallery

Just like duct tape, packing tape can be a bit too strong to use for an indoor painting job. Packing tape is designed to help hold cardboard boxes together. And considering how fibrous cardboard is, it makes sense that this tape would become super sticky and hold together. If you try to use packing tape on a wall, especially a textured wall, it may not stick as great, or alternatively, it may stick way too well.

If you are choosing between masking tape and packing tape, the best bet would be to go with masking tape that will stick to the wall adequately enough to paint over it. Where packing tape may not stick to a wall at all, masking tape is sure to stick. Just be careful that it has a decent seal, so you don’t get paint in places you don’t want.

Pros of Using Masking or Painter’s Tape

  • Creates sharp lines
  • Will protect your wall
  • Certain types for delicate surfaces
  • Versatile with exterior and interior jobs
  • Comes in so many different variations

Cons of Using Masking or Painter’s Tape

  • Expensive
  • Some are not well suited for exteriors
  • Delicate surface tape still may need to be used with caution

Best Types of Masking Tape

There are all different kinds of masking tape out there that is ideal for specific jobs. The following products that we’ve rounded up are great for painting, but each has a specific area it excels in. For example, like sharp lines or for delicate surfaces. While all of these types of masking tape will help you along your DIY interior painting project, you are going to see which type of tape is perfect for your job at hand.

Best Universal Painter’s Tape

Best Universal Painter's TapeView in gallery

This kind of blue painter’s tape is a perfect masking tape for painting and crafts. This is a professional grade paint tape that is UV resistant ant safe for multiple surfaces. You can use this kind of tape on walls, glass and even wood. It’s ideal for protecting any wood trim, painted walls, tile floors or glass windows when starting your next pain project. It stays on any surface for up to two weeks and won’t become gummy or leave sticky residue behind.

All you need to do is make sure your surface is perfectly clean before using and that the surface is dry and dust free. This ensures a good grip between the tape and the wall. You should let the tape set about half an hour to an hour before painting. To remove it, lift it from an outer corner at an angle and slowly remove the tape from the surface.

Important Specifications

  • Type: Painter’s Tape
  • Surfaces: Wood, Glass
  • Material: Paper
  • Size: two inches

Best Painter’s Tape for Sharp Lines 

Best Painter's Tape for Sharp Lines View in gallery

Sharp lines tape is perfect for creating sharp lines on multi surfaces. Including smooth or even slightly textured walls, trims, flooring baseboards, tiling, and even glass surfaces. It as the kind of technology to seal out paint to help you achieve the sharpest paint lines possible. Also, it has up to 21 days of clean removal, so it won’t leave behind any sticky residue, and it won’t leave any damage. This is a medium adhesive tape that is UV resistant and sunlight resistant.

To remove it, simply wait until the painted surface is dry to the fingertips and lift the tape at an angle staring at the farthest corner. You will see immediately how great the sharp lines are and how the product truly does live up to all the hype.

Important Specifications

  • Type: Sharp Lines Tape
  • Surfaces: Wood, Glass
  • Material: Paper
  • Size: 0.94 inches

Best Delicate Surfaces Painter’s Tape

Best Delicate Surfaces Painter's TapeView in gallery

Creating a safe release for delicate surfaces, this is the ideal tape to use when you are not sure if regular painter’s tape will be too rough on your surface. Delicate surfaces tape is perfect for accent walls, decorative stipes or even patterns to follow.

It’s designed to use on delicate surfaces so that includes so many different prints and patterns you can possibly think of. This roll of tape has an edge lock technology that will seal out paint in order to give you the sharpest lines possible all while remaining gentle on your delicate surfaces.

You are going to want to make sure that your surface is clean and dry before using your tape so that good contact is made, and you won’t have the risk of slipping or falling off. This type of tape is ideal for freshly painted surfaces, vinyl coated wallpaper, striping or even gloss.

While you can use it for interior and exterior jobs, it is recommended to use it indoors for the best effect. It is UV and sunlight resistant and comes with a 60-day clean removal which means it won’t stick or become gummy since it’s low to medium adhesion level.

Important Specifications

  • Type: Delicate surface tape
  • Surfaces: Wood, Glass
  • Material: Paper
  • Size: 1.41 inches

Best Exterior Surfaces Painting Tape

Best Exterior Surfaces Painting TapeView in gallery

Kind of like how delicate surfaces tape is great for interiors, exterior surfaces tape is great for exterior projects that need a little extra durability from the sun and weather. Exterior surfaces tape is designed to be used on surface that have smooth or semi smooth metal, surfaces with vinyl, painted wood, or glass. This is an innovative tape that is weatherproof and provides tear free removal. So it won’t fall apart on you no matter what type of whether it has been in.

What’s great is that this roll of tape provides a snap tear off the roll so you won’t be stuck with an awkward sized piece of tape as it will cut smoothly and crisply. It’s a strong adhesive that is used within this roll that is flake resistance with waterproof backing. It is also UV and sunlight resistant, so again, ideal to be used outdoors.

Important Specifications

  • Type: Exterior Surfaces tape
  • Surfaces: Metals, vinyl, wood, glass
  • Material: Crepe Paper
  • Size: 1.88 inches

Tips for Using Masking or Painter’s Tape

Using masking or painter’s tape may seem pretty cut and dry. But in order to get the best possible experience with your tape, you are going to want to follow a few simple steps to ensure that your surfaces are good to go.

Tips for Using Masking or Painter’s Tape

Prep the Surface

You will always (ALWAYS) need to make sure that your work area is clean. Meaning, no dirt or dust on the surface where the tape is meant to adhere to at all. To clean dusty or dirty walls and surfaces, use a warm wet towel or rag to gently get rid of any debris. Then, using a dry towel or rag, go over the area to ensure that the surface is not damp or wet.

If your surface is even slightly damp, the tape will not stick to the wall or it will fall off or lift in the process. This causes the paint to not adhere correctly and possible bleed into your tape line. If you have the time for it, allow your surface to dry overnight after cleaning to ensure no dampness at all on the surface.

Create Good Bonding

Tape is indeed sticky, but you are going to want to make sure your tape is creating a good bond to the surface. You can help your tape along by pressing down the edges of your tape with a paint scraper (or any other kind of rounded metal object that can squeeze into the corners.)

Creating a sealed edge will help you along with your project as you won’t have to go back and correct any mistakes made due to bad bonding. A flexible putty knife will also work so you can use one of these if you have it on hand.

You want to start at one endo f your tape and run the tool along the entire edge from start to finish. It may seem a bit tedious at first, but the results will reveal that this step is well worth it.

Taping Up Corners

When using painter’s tape or masking tape, you are just going to have to tape up a corner at some point. Don’t let this intimidate you, however. Placing tape in a corner does not need to be as hard as you think it is. Start by running the first piece of tape you lay down a little longer than you need.

Using your bonding tool, create a strong bond and then allow the extra piece of tape to stick up the wall. You can cut away the extra tape with a box cutter or putty knife if you use it carefully not to slash up the wall behind it.

Cutting the extra tape will create a perfectly molded piece of tape in the corner. Then you can lay your other piece of tape on the opposing end on top and repeat the same process. Cutting away any excess will help you get your corner area perfectly covered and bonded securely. Remember to press down on the seals to ensure no paint will drip down.

Allowing Plenty of Time to Dry

You are going to want to let your paint dry completely before trying to pull of the tape. If your paint is only semi dry, it could be pulled up and away with the tape. which would mean you’d have to start the whole job over again if not easy to repair.

The longer you paint is allowed to sit, the better it is for you when you get ready to pull the tape away. Most masking and painter’s tapes can stand up to a day or two, so use all time necessary so you don’t make a mistake and remove it too quickly.

Another great tip is scoring your painter’s tape before you pull it. This means you simply get your putty knife and run it gently along the seams of the tape to make it easier to pull out at a straight angle. It’s kind of like lifting the edges of a crust to a pie slightly before pulling out the first piece – a little life helps and will go a long way.

The Bottom Line on Masking Tape

So, there you have it! So many great kinds of tape to use for all the different kinds of projects you want to do. Masking and painter’s tape is ideal to use indoors or outdoors in order to get sharp lines, perfect edging, and a smooth, bold paint job. To be on the safe side, we recommend using the delicate surfaces painter’s tape so that any surface you are working on within your home will be protected.

There’d be nothing worse than placing all this tape within your home only to have it ruin the textured wall behind it once the job was done. No matter what kind of paint job you have at hand, there are so many different types of tape that will help you along the way.

Did you find this article helpful? If you have any experience with masking and painter’s tape, please feel free to add your comments in the section below. And check out our guide to the best paint edging tools for more home improvement tips!