Once you’ve made up your mind to do your own painting the most difficult issue apart from convincing your friends to pitch in, is selecting the right brush set. Some paintbrushes will do a wonderful job on interior walls, but might not be suitable exterior walls with all its roughness from environmental elements.
I prefer to do my own painting regardless if it’s indoor or outdoors, and have learned a great deal about using paint brushes. The texture of a paintbrush will determine if it can be effective on oil-based or latex paints.
Even if you have the desire and time to do this grunt work selecting the right brush set is not an easy fit. You should also keep in mind the time needed to prep the walls.
Basic Consideration for Paintbrushes
There are dozens of brands even at your local hardware store, but below are the key points to keep in mind as you go shopping for either a single brush or a set. Your paintbrush is only as durable as the bristles.
Choosing Bristles: Is it Better to Go With Synthetic or Natural?
The average person planning a DIY painting project will probably not pay attention to the materials used to make the bristles, but you’ll be faced with the task of choosing brushes made out of either natural or synthetic fibers.
The natural bristles are mostly derived from animals, while the synthetic version will be derived from chemical-based materials like polyester or nylon. What is far more common are painting brushes with bristles that are made out of a combination of both natural and synthetic materials.
Should the bristles makeup be that important? That would depend on what type of paint you’re using. Most professional painters would agree that natural fiber bristles fit better with acrylic paint that is oil based. On the other hand, bristles using synthetic fibers might give you better results when painting with latex paint that is water-based.
From my painting experience using automatic paint sprayers and different brands, brushes with synthetic bristles can handle any type of paint, while one made out of purely natural fibers will not perform as well when using water-based paint due to solubility and absorbency issues.
What About the Length And Width of the Paintbrush?
Your neighborhood hardware store might only carry brushes of the same length but there are length and size variations once you start looking online for a decent set for painting either the walls in a room or a whole house.
Length of the paint brush determines how you’ll hold it, while the width influences the quantity of paint you can apply with each stroke. A wider wall painting brush gives you the ability to cover a larger surface, thus reducing your do-it-yourself project duration.
Not only does a good wall or house painting require patience, but it will also require you have a combination of small, medium, and large brushes. The width and length of the smaller brushes would make it easier to paint/trim edges. This is why I would recommend you consider the merits of owning a set with different sized brushes.
Depending on the type of surface you’ll be painting it might be wise to also invest in brushes with differently shaped bristles. An affordable paintbrush set like the those reviewed in this article will increase your chances of creating the best paint job ever.
Buying A Single Paint Brush Vs A Paintbrush Set
Buying your wall painting brush individually comes with some advantages with one or two dislikes. Selecting paintbrushes individually gives you far greater choices on type, length, and width. Rather than be stuck with the sizes found in a set, you’re able to pick and choose your brush selection with an eye towards the painting task.
Also, you might prefer to have paintbrushes in your collection that covers all the different types of bristles. The only downside to shopping paint brushes piece by piece is the sheer cost involved. Not only will it involve more time the cost will also be significantly higher.
The main advantages offered by a paintbrush set can be summarized as less time and money. Most of the paint brush brands offer sets with several sizes in one packaging. The only limitation is you cannot pick and choose brush sizes or brittle type.
Even the best brush set will not come with a huge lengthy paintbrush like the one used by professional painters. Since any decent set will come with small brushes, it might be economical to just buy the larger paintbrush individually.
Review of Good Paint Brushes From Reliable Brands (Most Cost Less Than $10, But Not More Than $40)
Once you’ve decided on the type of paint to use the next step is collecting the right brushes to make the task less arduous as possible. For any DIY painting project to be successful, you need preparation and the right set of accessories especially paintbrushes.
Here are the brands that delivered the most value for the money based on current customer feedback, sales numbers, and opinions of professional painters.
1 – Wooster Brush Company – Probably the Oldest Reputable Paintbrush Maker in the World
Longevity in any type of business is quite difficult and this company is a model of success. It has been operating since 1851. It pains me to think of the manufacturing process for bristle paintbrushes before the advent of modern machinery.
The company itself is still based in Wooster, Ohio, and has only had nine presidents since its founding. This manufacturer is well respected within the industry and several milestones that helped to usher in the present modern paintbrushes can be traced to this research done by this firm.
They were the first to perfect the use of nylon filaments and synthetic fabric materials in paint brushes and rollers. With over 2,000 products under its belt, it will be hard to find any good painter without at least one of the painting accessories sold by this company. Some of the painting tools made by Wooster Brush company are sold under various trade names.
The Most Popular Wooster Paintbrushes
1A – Wooster Brush Q3211-2 – The Ultimate Small Paintbrush for Trims, Edges, And Tight Spaces
The handle for the Q3211-2 Wooster brush is slightly over two inches long, which makes it ideal for not only painting walls but also tight spaces, trims, and corners. The bristles are made from both polyester and nylon materials and can be used effectively with all paint blends.
The ring holding the bristles in place is made out of brass that has a coating of steel to give it strength and durability. The versatility of this brush is only limited by the painter’s imagination. Both small and large hands will find the handle to be comfortable and easy to maneuver.
Affordability is another reason why the Wooster Paintbrush Q3211 is popular with pros, and beginners will find its maneuverability helpful when navigating difficult trims, edges, or tight spaces. The quality of the construction surpasses industry standards and can be purchased in packs of three, six, and twelve, for more significant savings.
It is significantly more affordable than other paintbrushes from lesser known brands.
The shorter handle makes it easier for people with smaller hands to paint with ease.
The fact that the bristles are made from a combination of polyester and nylon means it can be used with all types of paint.
The smaller handle might pose handling problems to people with larger hands.
It might not work as well with alkyd based paints based on feedback from some customers.
1B – Wooster Brush Q3118-4 – The Ideal Paintbrush When Using latex, Acrylic, And Paints That Are Oil Based
Another Wooster paint brush with professional characteristics is the model number Q3118-4. It has a slightly wider bristles tip and there are about six different length variations one can choose from. I used the 4-inch paint brush version of this model to complete a paint task a few months back.
The thing I like the most about the Q3118-4 Wooster paintbrush is that it creates no stroke marks. The bristle filaments are firmly held in place with a ferrule made out of brass plated steel. The manufacturer claims the bristles are derived from both polyester and gold nylon material.
Regardless of your hand size, there are length variations to suit anyone’s painting style. To this day, my friends find it hard to believe I painted the interior walls of my home using this brush. The best way to wash off excess pain on both the bristle filament and the handle is to use a lite paint thinner solution.
This painting brush from Wooster is also highly affordable and comes with durable features you’ll expect from a manufacturer in business since 1851.
The variation in length sizes means you’ll find one to fit comfortably with your hand size.
There is no loss of bristles as you paint, unlike other paintbrushes I have utilized in the past.
It is not the best performing brush to use if you’re painting with a water based paint.
Cleaning the leftover paint from the brush is slightly more tasking, and there is also the cost of needing a paint thinner to make it look like new again.
2 – Purdy Paint Brushes – Most Professional Painters Prefer These Handcrafted Brushes for Longevity And Precision
During my research for this review, it soon became obvious that the paintbrushes from Purdy carry a significant weight among professional painters. The brushes made by this company cost slightly more than the ones from Wooster and I wanted to find out why from people that paint for a living.
The Purdy brand name was started in 1925 in what used to be a quiet little town called Portland, Oregon. The corporate headquarters is presently located in Cleveland, Ohio, with subsidiaries in other major countries. You can read about the many awards won by this manufacturer over the decades.
The higher cost for the paintbrushes from Purdy might be due to the manufacturing process. It is claimed that each paintbrush is still handcrafted and hand stamped by the finishing employee. I have used several Purdy brushes and can testify how durable they can be.
The biggest take away from speaking with several pros is that Purdy paintbrushes are built to last a very long time. Painters just love the many bristles composition not to talk about the solid wooden handle that would age beautifully the more you paint.
At a visit to a high rise construction in my town, a painter showed me a Purdy brush he has used for the last thirty years. While the solid wood handle had scratch marks, the bristles were as durable as can be. He said as long as any Purdy paintbrush is thoroughly cleaned after each use it can be utilized for many decades without any major loss of bristle filaments.
Best Purdy Handcrafted Paintbrushes
2A – Purdy 144400340 XL Series Swan – The Ever Lasting Paint Brush With Extra-Long Filaments
The cost of this paint brush might be shocking to the average person, but most professional painters will testify to its incredible craftsmanship and features. Purdy 144400340 XL is solidly built and yet comfortable to handle and maneuver.
It is ideally suited for use on both interior and exterior surfaces. The bristles are thick and can hold more paint. No streaking lines from each stroke. The bristles are derived through a proprietary combination of polyester and nylon materials.
The Purdy 144400340 XL is one of the finest paintbrushes one can use to get professional results. You can use this painting brush with all blends of paint, and clean up after each use is a cinch.
This brush can be used with stains and all types of paint, making it ideal for a tasking DIY painting project.
Solidly built and yet easy to handle, and comes with different length sizes.
Probably the right paintbrush to use if you’re working outdoors in extreme heat or humid conditions.
The biggest con is the higher price tag. It is definitely not for cheap minded individuals.
2B – Purdy 144152735 Pro-Extra Series – Comes With The Right Type of Filaments And Can Be Used to Paint Even Concrete Blocks Outdoors
This Purdy pro extra 3-inch brush can also be purchased in other length sizes, and it is designed to allow even the novice painter to get the job done faster. The maker suggested it is more effective with primers and latex paints.
The bristle filaments are made from both nylon and polyester materials. A professional painter that I know insists the Purdy pro extra brush allows for the even distribution of paint with every stroke. The brush itself is not hard to clean, especially if done right after the painting.
The handle is on the lengthy side, which might be why many pros in the painting business prefer it over other brands. Purdy has hit a run home with this design, considering it has the ability to maintain its original stiffness even after many uses.
The self-flagging tip feature allows the brush to deliver each paint stroke without leaving streak marks on the wall.
If you’re using a volatile organic compound (VOC) complaint type of paint this Purdy brush will not disappoint.
The handle itself is made out of solid wood and there is a metal ring that holds the bristles strongly in place.
The Purdy 144152735 brush is quite pricey despite all its fine features.
Keeping the bristles clean do require more work especially after painting with an oil-based paint.
Purdy Vs. Wooster Paint Brushes
One thing I have noticed is the pride most professional painters take in the tools they utilize on a daily basis. Their most prized possession is the type of paintbrushes. I talked to over a dozen painting contractors and got an earful about why a Purdy or Wooster would enable a better painting experience and result.
Both Wooster and Purdy have been in business for a very long time and both are good at producing high-quality paintbrushes, but I have to give the Purdy brushes a higher mark for superior craftsmanship. Yes, Purdy paintbrushes cost more, but each is handcrafted even in this industrial machinery age.
Based on my research, more professional painters prefer to use Purdy. Another interesting observation is that most painters have both brands in their painting arsenal. A friendly painter confessed that he uses the Purdy paintbrushes on high-end jobs.
If you’re looking to just paint your apartment the brushes from Wooster would do just fine as I have utilized many models in the past and got excellent results. I do believe that the paint brushes made by Purdy are more comfortable to handle and do distribute the paint better.
Purdy paintbrushes are more popular with painting professionals because they tend to last much longer. So if your goal is to do painting jobs for a living, the Purdy brushes should be looked at as an investment that will allow you to deliver fantastic results.
Best Paint Brush Sets to Use For Walls
Unless you’re into painting for a living a durable painting brush set might be the way to go. There are now brush sets that come with all the types of brushes you need to paint that room or a whole apartment or house.
I get your thinking, why spend all that money on a paint brush you might only use once. The following paint brush sets are cheap and yet durable enough to use on almost any type of painting task. Truth be told, most are designed for one-time use, which is what most people want anyway.
3 – Pro-Grade Home Wall/Trim House Paint Brush Set Review
This brand is not well known, neither do they have an established online presence, but the set looks fine and most of the current users were satisfied with the durability of the brushes. It is designed to be used with all types of painting, but keep in mind this is a use and throw away brush set, in my opinion.
The Pro-Grade brush set is available for purchase in different package sizes. There are over a dozen paintbrush sets offered by this brand. While it is marketed as a long lasting brush set, I doubt if you will get multiple uses out of it.
This is also an ideal paintbrush set to deploy for smaller painting chores like a chair, outdoor table, cabinets, or craft projects. Most of the set configurations cost less than ten bucks, which is a bargain considering a single Purdy brush cost more than that.
Comes with all the right sizes to complete a whole apartment painting.
Many different set configurations to please a novice painter.
The price is definitely a steal, so get it while it last.
Despite the look of the brush set from Pro-Grade it probably would not last as long as a Wooster or Purdy brush. It is probably good for one-time use only.
4 – Presa Premium Paint Brushes Set Review
This is a better paint brush set than the one from Pro-Grade. This set is only available with five different sized paint brushes. It has a well-positioned solid round tapered (SRT) filaments, which means better paint holding and distribution with each stroke.
Despite the marketing claim by the manufacturer that it is a premium brush set, the performance will fall short of that offered by a Purdy or Wooster brush set. If you’re just looking to paint an apartment or renew the look of a cabinet or complete a arts and craft project, this brush set will do just fine.
Is the Presa paintbrush set capable of lasting through several uses? That will depend on how the bristles hold up, and the type of paint blend you’re using. An oil based paint will probably render the bristles useless after one use.
Most of you realize that painting is one of those tasks you just want to outsource to a competent professional, but there is a satisfaction joy you get from doing it yourself. Any painting task involves grunt work apart from finding the right brushes to use.
You’ll have to decide what type of paint rollers to use and the type of quality canvas drop cloth to deploy. Painting is not a difficult task to master especially if you have all the right tools. If you’re going to be doing more painting than usual it would behoove you to invest in a top paint brush brand like Purdy.