The Best Type Of PaintBrush Fiber For Your DIY Project

You'll notice as you're out shopping that not all the paintbrushes you can buy are made with the same materials. It's true that some are more expensive than others so if you're only looking for a cheap brush then go ahead and buy in the bargain basement section of the hardware store. This might come as a surprise but different brush materials can really have an impact on how your painting project turns out.

Natural Fibers

If you're going to be using a lot of oil based paints then you're usually better off with paint brushes that use natural fibers. The vast majority of natural brushes are made with organic materisl suc as hog or ox hair. Why do these brushes work so well with oil based paints? Simply because they don't lose their shape or become soggy when dipped into the paint. The same cannot be said of water based paint. Natural fibers tend to absorb moisture and water based paint has plenty of moisture to be absorbed, which causes the brush to be much less effective when you're actually painting.

Because natural fibers are so soft, these brushes create a beautiful finish when they are used with oil based paints. With proper care and cleaning, they can be reused for many different projects so they're actually more of an investment than an expense. It's all about perspective eh?

Synthetic Fibers

Nylon fibers are some of the toughest that you can buy and a nylon fibered paint brush can last a lifetime if cared for properly. The one downside is that it may not give yo the finish that you expected; usually not as "polished" as a natural fiber paint brush for example. Because of this many decorators only use nylon brushes on textured walls where the finish isn't going to be smooth anyway.

Polyester brushes work a lot more like natural fibers than some of the other synthetic fibers. They pick up more paint and create a smoother coat. However, they aren’t as sturdy as some other fibers, which is why brushes often are a combination of polyester and another synthetic fiber instead of pure polyester. These brushes are pretty easy to clean, so if the bristles hold up, you can use them over and over again.

There is one type of artificial fiber that works as well as natural fibers do for oil based paints - Chinex. Chinex fibers are able to handle the weight of the oil based paint and give a great finish too. They can also handle water based paints, because the synthetic fibers don‘t absorb water like natural fibers do. If you are planning to switch back and forth between paint types, you’ll want to look for brushes made with these synthetic brush fibers.

Not all paint brushes are created equal - bear this in mind before you go shopping.