What’s the best type of paintbrush for your project? It depends upon the paint you are using.

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    Choose the Right Brush for Your Paint

    Lots of factors will impact the success of your project. Choosing the right type of paint, performing proper prepaint preparation, and selecting the right weather for painting all make an impact.

    But there’s one other key component to success that is often overlooked: choosing the right paintbrush. Because as it turns out, just grabbing any kind of paintbrush for your project probably won’t work out well — unless you get really lucky with your grab.

    That’s because there are two general classifications of paintbrushes: those made with natural bristles, and those made with synthetic bristles. And the best choice for your project will depend upon the type of paint you’ll be using.

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    For Latex Paints …

    If you’re using latex paint for your project, you should select only brushes made with synthetic bristles.

    Latex paint contains water. And the hairs used for natural bristle brushes are naturally water-absorbent. That means that natural bristles will swell and lose their stiffness as they absorb water from the paint. As a result, the brush will likely become limp and difficult to work with, and do an inferior job of applying the paint.

    But since synthetic fibers do not absorb a significant amount of water, they’ll retain their natural shape and stiffness as you work.

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    For Solvent-Based Paints …

    Both natural bristles and synthetic bristles can be used with solvent-based paints (oil-based and alkyd-based).

    But since natural bristles are softer than synthetic bristles, it’s best to use natural bristle brushes for applying enamels and topcoats.