Brushing Up on Paint Applicators

It's time to "brush up" your knowledge about paint applicators with a roll call of the latest innovations in the products category.

There are two types of paint applicator bristles - natural and synthetic. The finest natural paint brushes are made of China hog bristle. These brushes are best suited for oil-based paints, but such paints are less commonly used today than in decades past.

With the introduction of environmentally friendly latex and water-borne coatings, synthetic brushes made of nylon, polyester and nylon/polyester blends are being used more often.

One of the most important innovations in recent years has been the development of the Chinex filament by DuPont. It is synthetically manufactured to have the same properties as China hog bristle, yet it will work well in both oil and latex paints.

With more and more consumers tackling do-it-yourself decorating projects, unique products are surfacing in the applicator market to meet their special needs. One such product is the mini-roller, also know as the radiator roller. This very small specialty trim roller has actually been on the market for more than 30 years, but was only recently "discovered" by professional painters and consumers alike. The mini-roller is ideal for painting hard-to-reach areas or small spaces that a 9-inch roller or 3- or 4-inch brush can't access.

Beyond traditional brushes and rollers, there is a whole range of convenience painting tools. These specialty products and "gadgets" - including mini-rollers, trim rollers, corner painters and trim pads - are time-saving options for consumers. Many of the tools also are offered in foam materials which are popular with consumers. Foam covers are now offered in a variety of nap depths and configurations which weren't available just a few years ago.

For more information on the variety of paint applicators available, ask your local independent paint and decorating products retailer.

Courtesy of the Paint and Decorating Retailers Association -