How to Cut In When Painting

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A step by step guide on how to cut in when painting like a pro. We’ll show you how to prep the area, choose the right brush, and get clean lines every time.

Checkout this video:

The Supplies You Will Need

In order to cut in when painting, you will need a few supplies. You will need a paintbrush, painter’s tape, and a ladder. You will also need a paint tray and a drop cloth. These are all the supplies you will need in order to cut in when painting.


-Latex paint: This is the most common type of paint used for painting walls and ceilings. It’s easy to work with and clean up, and it dries quickly.
-Oil-based paint: This type of paint takes longer to dry, but it’s more durable than latex paint and can be used for painting both walls and trim.
-Primer: This is a necessary step when painting over a dark wall or when using a light color on top of a darker one. The primer will help the new color to go on evenly.

##Heading: Paint Brushes

-Synthetic brushes: These brushes are made with synthetic bristles, which are ideal for use with latex paint. They are less expensive than natural bristle brushes, but they don’t hold up as well to heavy use.
-Natural bristle brushes: These brushes are made with natural hog’s hair bristles, which are ideal for use with oil-based paint. They are more expensive than synthetic brushes, but they last longer and work better with thick paint.

##Heading: Paint Roller

-Paint roller frame: This is the metal or plastic frame that holds the roller sleeve in place.
-Roller sleeve: This is the part of the roller that actually touches the surface you’re painting. It’s typically made of foam or synthetic fabric and comes in different widths to fit different size frames.
-Paint tray: This is what you pour your paint into before loading your roller sleeve. It has a lip around the edge to catch any drips and usually comes with a built-in grid to help evenly distribute the paint on your roller sleeve.


The next step is to “cut in.” This is when you use a brush to paint the areas close to the ceiling, corners, and trim. You’ll want to use a high-quality angled brush for this. A 2-1/2 inch angled sash brush is a good choice. Nylon or polyester bristles work well because they’re less likely to absorb paint and become distorted. acrylic or latex paint from a can or a bucket.


Paintbrushes come in a variety of shapes and sizes, and each has a specific purpose. Choosing the right brush will help you achieve a professional-looking paint job.

-Angled sash brush: This type of brush is used for painting trim and molding. The angled bristles make it easy to get into tight spaces.
-Flat sash brush: A flat sash brush is similar to an angled sash brush, but the bristles are not angled. This type of brush is good for painting both large and small surfaces.
-Paint roller: Paint rollers are used for painting large, flat surfaces. They are available in different widths to accommodate different size areas.
-Paint tray: A paint tray will hold your paint while you are working. It is also useful for pouring paint into smaller containers.


A roller is one of the principal tools for painting walls and other large surfaces rapidly and with consistent results. It consists of a rod or core around which is wrapped a layer of fabric, traditionally made of woven polyester but sometimes made of foam, wool or even synthetic fibers such as nylon. The roller coverings come in various pile depths or thicknesses, from very short (¼ inch) to very thick (1½ inches), to accommodate different types of paint and painting conditions.

Preparing the Room

Before you can start painting, you need to prep the room. This means you need to move all the furniture out or to the center of the room. You will also need to cover the floors and any other surfaces that you don’t want paint on. Once the room is prepped, you can start painting.

Covering the Floor

Spread a drop cloth over the entire floor area. If you are concerned about drips or spills, use plastic sheeting instead of a fabric drop cloth. If you are painting a ceiling, cover any furniture in the room with plastic as well.

Hanging Plastic

Hanging plastic sheets is one way to protect your floors and furniture when you’re painting. It’s also a good way to keep paint from getting everywhere if you’re not the most careful painter. Here’s how to hang plastic sheets so they’ll stay in place and do their job.

1. Clean the floors and walls where you’ll be hanging plastic. Any dirt or debris will make it harder for the plastic to stick.
2. Measure the area you’ll be covering and cut the plastic sheeting to size. You can use scissors or a utility knife for this.
3. Tape the edges of the plastic sheeting to the floor, baseboard, or molding with painter’s tape. Be sure to press down firmly so the tape sticks well.
4. Trim any excess plastic with a utility knife.
5. Repeat steps 2-5 for each section of floor or wall you’ll be covering.

Applying Tape

If you’re serious about getting clean paint lines, take the time to put down some painter’s tape. It’s a bit more expensive than regular masking tape, but it’s worth it—painter’s tape doesn’t leave behind a sticky residue, and it can be removed cleanly for up to 14 days.

Here are a few tips for using painter’s tape:

– Run the edge of a putty knife or other hard, flat object along the edge of the tape to ensure good adhesion.
– If you’re painting over a semigloss or glossy surface, sand the area lightly before applying the tape. This will help the tape stick better and prevent paint from seeping underneath.
– When cutting in around molding or other obstacles, use a small brush—it will give you more control than a larger one.

Cutting In

Cutting in is the term used for painting the edges of a room. The phrase “cutting in” comes from the fact that you are literally “cutting in” the paint to the edge of the room. This can be done with a brush or an angled paint roller.

Using a Paintbrush

Cutting in is the term used for painting the trim around doors, windows, molding, and ceilings—basically, any area where your paint brush can’t fit. A good rule of thumb is to cut in one area for every three areas you roll. So, if you’re painting an average size room (say, 10 x 12), you’ll cut in the trim around the doorways and windows first and then roll the walls.

Here’s how to do it:
1. Pour a generous amount of paint into your tray.
2. Dip just the tip of your brush into the paint and tap off the excess onto a paper towel or the rim of the can. You want a very small amount of paint on your brush—just enough to cover the bristles lightly. Too much paint will drip and run down the wall; too little and you’ll have to go over the same area multiple times, which will cause streaks.
3. Start at an edge (top or bottom) of your cutting-in area and paint a 2- to 3-inch band—enough so that you can take long strokes without having to reload your brush frequently. Then fill in any spaces with shorter strokes.
4. Once you’ve completed all your cutting in, go back and lightly edge along any areas where your paint overlaps onto surfaces you don’t want painted (such as glass or tile). This will help ensure clean lines and prevent any accidental splatters or smudges outside of your cutting-in areas.

Using a Roller

Whether you’re using a brush or roller to paint a wall or other surface, the process of “cutting in” is always the same. Cutting in is the technique of painting the edges of a wall or surface first, before rolling or brushing paint onto the main area. This ensures that you get a clean, straight line between the two colors without any overlap. Here’s how to cut in using a roller:

Finishing Up

Now you’ve reached the end of the project and are ready to paint the cut-in lines. To finish up, you’ll need to cut in around the trim and edges using a brush or small roller. This process can seem daunting, but with a few tips and tricks, you’ll be able to cut in like a pro in no time.

Letting the Paint Dry

If you’ve just painted your walls and are eager to see the finished product, it’s important to let the paint dry completely before adding any finishing touches. Depending on the type of paint you used and the circumstances under which you painted (for example, if it was humid outside), this can take anywhere from a few hours to a couple of days.

Once the paint is dry, you can add any final touches, such as trim or baseboards. You can also add wall art or other accents. If you’re not sure whether the paint is completely dry, test it in an inconspicuous area before adding anything else.

Applying a Second Coat

After the first coat has dried completely, decide if a second coat is necessary. If so, cut in along the ceilings, corners, and masking tape before rolling on the new paint. A second coat will give better coverage and often provide a more uniform color.


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