How to use paint pads

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How to use paint pads
Paint pads are used for tricky edges and corners (Digital Vision./Photodisc/Getty Images)

Paint pads traditionally are used for the edges of walls, in corners and for tricky jobs, such as window frames. Their advantages are the speed of a paint roller and the precision of a brush. In addition, paint pads don't leave brush marks and create fewer drips. In fact, you might decide to use a combination of paint pads for your entire project.

Skill level:

Things you need

  • Paint pads
  • Paint
  • Tray

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    Choose the right size of paint pad

  1. 1

    Pick the size of the paint pad according to the size of the area you intend to cover. Use a 7.5-by 12.5cm (3-by 5-inch) pad for large surfaces and window and door frames, for example. Use a 2.5-by 5cm (1-by 2-inch) pad for narrow areas on windows or railings.

    How to use paint pads
    Choose the right size according to the area you are painting (Digital Vision./Photodisc/Getty Images)
  2. 2

    Select the paint pad material for the type of job. Foam pads cover flat areas well. Mohair pads paint tough surfaces such as stucco.

    How to use paint pads
    Choose the right material of pad (Hemera Technologies/ Images)
  3. 3

    Pour the paint into a tray. The tray is more convenient and neater than painting directly from a can, especially since a pad holds less than a roller. With the tray, you can wipe off any excess before painting.

    How to use paint pads
    Use a tray for more ease (Martin Poole/Digital Vision/Getty Images)
  4. 4

    Paint with long strokes, all in the same direction, to produce a smooth appearance.

    How to use paint pads
    Paint in the same direction (Christopher Robbins/Photodisc/Getty Images)
  5. 5

    Feather the paint to disguise the line between strokes.

    How to use paint pads
    Feather the paint to disguise the line between strokes (Ryan McVay/Photodisc/Getty Images)
  6. 6

    Clean washable pads with detergent and water as soon as possible after you have finished.

    How to use paint pads
    Wash the pads as soon as possible after use (Martin Poole/Digital Vision/Getty Images)

Tips and warnings

  • Some paint pads have holes so that you can insert a long handle to reach tall jobs.
  • Some large paint pads contain wheels that keep the pad away from the edge.

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