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Published Nov. 4, 2020

Offering the chance to overhaul your home entirely in one simple step, a fresh coat of paint can completely change a room’s energy. Whether changing an area’s color or merely refreshing the existing paint with a new coat, a good paint job can make a huge difference. 

Anyone who’s ever painted a room knows the painting is the easy and fun part—but the key is in the prep. Painter’s tape is a must-have to keep your lines straight and prevent bleeding. The best painter’s tape should be as easy to apply as it is to remove. High-quality tape adheres well and makes a tight seal, not allowing the paint to bleed under. 

Of course, depending on your project’s size and the area you plan to paint, there are tons of different painter’s tape options. Here, we break down the best painter’s tape on the market to help you make an informed choice.

The Best Painter’s Tape

FrogTape Multi-Surface Painter’s Tape is a great overall choice, and this multi-pack will come in very handy. Coming with four separate rolls of tape, there’s plenty of tape for even the largest projects. Measuring just under one and a half inches, each roll includes 60 yards of tape. Using high-grade materials, the tape features a gentle adhesive that sticks seamlessly to a clean wall and peels off cleanly for up to three weeks without leaving behind any sticky residue. 

Able to adhere to any surface, from glass to unfinished walls, the tape works for all types of paint jobs. The tape itself prevents leaking and leaves behind straight, flawless lines. Overall, in terms of ease of use, performance, and value, this is an ideal painter’s tape choice.

Key Features
  • 60 Yards
  • 4 Rolls
  • 1.41 Inches wide
  • Green
Specification
  • Brand FrogTape
  • Model 240660
  • Weight 2.1 pounds
PROS

Professional grade

Edge-treated with patented PaintBlock Technology

21 Day clean removal

CONS

Removes fresh paint

If the role is exposed to heat, the adhesive can fail

If not stuck well, it will bleed

Available in different widths and quantities, IPG ProMask Blue Painter’s Tape is both versatile and affordable. Enabling you to choose the ideal amount for your painting project’s size, this tape offers all the benefits of professional-grade equipment. Through an effective adherent, it applies quickly and holds in place immediately after application. Sturdy and lasting, you can keep the tape in position for as long as two weeks — even if exposed to direct sunlight. It peels away seamlessly and leaves you with the lines you seek.

Ranging in size from under one inch to almost three inches wide, each roll features 60 yards of tape. Easy to tear and lasting a long time in storage, this tape gives you all the advantages of high-grade materials at a favorable price point.

Key Features
  • 60 Yards
  • 0.94 Inches wide
  • One roll
  • Blue
Specification
  • Brand IPG ProMask
  • Model PMD24
  • Weight 4.8 Ounces
PROS

14 Day clean removal

UV resistant

For use on lacquer, polyurethane-coated surfaces, unfinished wood, wallpaper, or new, unpainted, or freshly painted wallboard

CONS

Can leave a sticky residue

May not stick well

Can bleed at the edges

When seeking out quality painting tape, you want something that balances easy tearing with a strong grip. ScotchBlue Multi-Surface is ideal for these requirements, using a lightweight yet effective adhesive to hold steadily in place. A great choice for nuanced painting needs, the tape is quite thin, ringing in at less than an inch. This enables you to paint the maximum area and leaves little requirement for post-taping touch-ups. Sturdy in the face of sunlight and UV rays, you can keep the tape in place for as long as two weeks, and it still pulls off the walls smoothly. 

Simple to apply, it requires limited time to dry before you can easily maneuver around and over the tape itself. Featuring a full 60 yards of strong tape, you can easily paint a full room with this tool’s help.

Key Features
  • 60 Yards
  • 0.70 Inches wide
  • One roll
  • Medium adhesive
Specification
  • Brand ScotchBlue
  • Model 2090-18E
  • Weight 3.88 Ounces
PROS

14 Day clean removal

UV and sunlight resistant

Designed for use on multiple surfaces

CONS

Can leave residue

Can peel off in pieces

Can remove fresh paint

Known for its high-quality hold and easy application, Duck Clean Release Blue Painter’s Tape is the premium choice for jobs of all sizes. The value is especially apparent when repainting rooms that have a great deal of natural light. Both the surface and the adherent resist damage due to UV rays and sunlight. This means that even if you keep the tape in place for two full weeks, you can pull it away smoothly without disturbing the paint lines and without the tape breaking apart. 

Working equally well on wood, glass, and metal, you never need to switch tapes during a project. Adding efficiency to painting preparations, it is both easy to apply and remove. Coming with three rolls of 1.88-inch tape, each unit offers 60 yards of material. Users benefit from a premium painting supply sufficient to complete large-scale projects.

Key Features
  • 60 Yards
  • 1.88 Inches wide
  • Three rolls
  • Medium adhesion
Specification
  • Brand Duck
  • Model 240461
  • Weight 1.8 pounds
PROS

UV-resistant

14-day clean removal

Ideal for a variety of surfaces including painted walls, trim, glass, wood, and metal

CONS

The edges can bleed

Can leave residue 

Easily sticks to itself

A good choice for baseboards and trim, Scotch Thick Painter’s Tape provides a medium width tape at 1.41 inches. It provides sleek lines and a professional-looking finish. Featuring a full 60 yards of tape, this option comes in a single unit, making it perfect for projects that are small in scope. Enabling you to create sharp lines without distortion from weather or paint, this tape works well on all surfaces. Sticking to everything from glass to metal to wood, the tape is easy to apply and stays in place until the job’s done. 

Though this thick tape takes at least 30 minutes to set in place, once adhered, it resists all the elements, including moisture and sunlight. Offering the full scope of benefits, this tape is easy to apply and remove and performs well in all conditions.

Key Features
  • 60 Yards
  • 1.41 Inches wide
  • One roll
  • Medium adhesive
Specification
  • Brand Scotch
  • Model 2090EL-36E
  • Weight 4.8 ounces
PROS

21-day clean removal 

UV and sunlight resistant

Edge-Lock Technology

CONS

Can rip apart during removal

May not stick to fresh paint

30 minute setting time

This pack of blue Teegan Tapes Painters Tape comes with three rolls that are each 50 yards in length and one inch wide. The tape has a 60-day clean removal time. You can use it on a variety of surfaces, making it an ideal multi-use tape. You can use it on textured walls, delicate surfaces, baseboards, trims, metals, porcelain, and glass. The tape is also UV resistant, which makes it safe for use in direct sunlight. 

You may find the edges don’t stick well, or the tape doesn’t stay stuck for long periods of time. You can address this by making sure you securely stick it down during application. The tape can also rip apart during removal, but you can avoid this with a proper 45-degree angle removal technique.

Key Features
  • 50 Yards
  • One inch wide
  • Three pack
  • 60-Day clean removal
Specification
  • Brand Teegan Tapes
  • Model TT-3PkPainters
  • Weight 12 ounces
PROS

Multi-surface safe

Indoor and outdoor use

UV light resistant

CONS

Tape rips apart during removal

Edges may not stick well

Doesn’t stay stuck for long periods of time

The professional quality XFasten Professional Blue Painters Tape comes in a three-pack. Each roll holds 60 yards of tape and is two inches wide. The tape has a 60-day clean removal time period. It can stick to most surfaces, including wood, concrete, glass, and textured drywall. You can use this tape for your interior and exterior painting projects. You’ll find using the tape to be easy as it’s treated to resist curling and sticking to itself. 

Unfortunately, the tape isn’t exactly two inches wide: It’s actually 1.88 inches. This isn’t a big deal if you’re using it for trim. It can also be difficult to remove and sometimes leave a residue if you leave it on too long or apply it to delicate surfaces. 

Key Features
  • 60 Yards
  • Two inches wide
  • Three pack
  • 60-day clean removal
Specification
  • Brand XFasten
  • Model BPT260P3
  • Weight 15.8 ounces
PROS

Sticks to most surfaces

Safe for indoor and outdoor use

Safe for wood, concrete, glass, and texture drywall

CONS

The exact width measurement is 1.88 inches

Difficult to remove

Can leave residue

If you need to paint in various climate conditions and on a broad range of surfaces, then the Bates Painters Tape is a smart choice. You’ll get three rolls that are 0.7 inches wide and have 54 yards of tape on each roll. It’s safe to use this tape on treated and untreated wood, glass, porcelain, tiles, metal, and textured surfaces. You could even use it for an automotive painting project. It has a 14-day clean removal time, and the adhesive is resistant to changing temperatures and humidity levels. 

You’ll need to be careful when removing it, or it might rip apart or remove the underlying paint when you take it off. It may also not stick to all surfaces. But you can avoid these issues with proper application and removal procedures.

Key Features
  • 54 Yards
  • 0.7 inches wide
  • Three pack
  • Safe on untreated or treated wood panels, glass, metal, porcelain, tiles, or textured surfaces
Specification
  • Brand Bates Choice
  • Model BP-T07
  • Weight 10.4 ounces
PROS

Home and automotive painting

Adhesive consistent in different temperature and humidity

14 Day clean removal

CONS

Rips apart when removed

Can remove paint during tape removal

May not stick to all surfaces

You’ll be able to tackle plenty of projects with the six rolls that come in the Multi-Use Painters Masking Tape kit. Each roll of green tape measures 0.94 inches wide and has 54.6 yards of tape. The tape works on a variety of surfaces, both smooth and rough. What’s nice about this pack is that each roll is individually wrapped. This preserves them, so each roll is fresh when you go to use them. It will also remove cleanly with no residue left behind. 

If you have a long term project, this tape may not remain in place, but this won’t be the case for most interior or exterior building painting projects. The edges can also bleed if you don’t take the time to press them down properly.

Key Features
  • 54.6 Yards
  • 0.94 Inches wide
  • Six rolls
  • Multi-use masking tape
Specification
  • Brand KingOrigin
  • Model OR-EB50002A
  • Weight 1.54 pounds
PROS

Works on rough or smooth surfaces

Individually packaged

No adhesive residue left

CONS

Won’t stay stuck long term

Can lift paint during removal

Edges can bleed

If you have a large painting project ahead of you, you’ll need the six rolls in the Painter’s Mate Green Painting Tape. Each roll measures 0.94 inches wide and has 60 yards of tape. It performs well on vinyl, glass, metal, wood, and painted walls. This makes it ideal for taping all of the surfaces of your home. It has an eight-day clean removal time, which is plenty of time to complete your project. The medium-high adhesion ensures it will stick to a wide variety of surfaces. 

The drawback of this tape is that you need to know what you’re doing when applying it. With proper adhesion, you’re in the clear. Improper application, and it may not stick well, bleed at the edges, or remove in pieces.

Key Features
  • 60 Yards
  • 0.94 Inches wide
  • Six rolls
  • Ideal for painted walls, woodwork, glass, metal, and vinyl
Specification
  • Brand ShurTech Brands, LLC
  • Model 668840
  • Weight 1.85 pounds
PROS

Medium-high adhesion

UV and sunlight resistant

Eight-day clean removal

CONS

Doesn’t stick well

Paint bleeds through the edges

Removes in pieces

Best Painter’s Tape Buying Guide & FAQ

The key to a professional quality paint job is in the prep work. If you gather the right tools, buy the right paint, and prepare your painting surface, then you’ve set yourself up for a beautifully finished painting project. 

After you clean your painting surface, the next crucial step is to trim the edges with tape. This is the only way to achieve those perfectly straight and crisp lines. But you can’t just use any tape. Painters tape is the only one that will stick well enough to prevent bleeding but also be gentle enough to get removed without causing damage. 

While everyone automatically reaches for a blue roll of tape, there’s more to it than that. This guide will explain the different types and what features you should look for when buying painter’s tape. 

Why Do You Need Painter’s Tape?

When you use painter’s tape, it doesn’t matter what your skill level is with a roller or a brush. The tape creates a crisp, clean, and straight line. This helps you to achieve professional-level results without having professional level experience or skill. 

Using painter’s tape also helps you paint faster. Spending a little time doing prep work significantly reduces the amount of time you’ll spend painting. With tape, you won’t have to go slow with careful edging and cutting in painting. You can paint over the edge of the tape and then remove it to reveal your clean edge. 

Painter’s tape isn’t just for edge and trim work. You can also use it to create a custom design on your wall. You could use it to make stripes, diamonds, squares, or any other shape. You could use tape of varying widths to create a geometric or abstract pattern. 

  • Paint clean lines for your edge and trim work. 
  • Finish painting faster.
  • Get more creative with your painting. 

The Most Common Types of Painter’s Tapes

Not all painter’s tape is the same or is meant for the same purpose. Yes, they all are meant for use while painting, but depending on the adhesion level, it could be better suited for a specific type and location of painting. Knowing the adhesion level you need is the first step in buying the right tape for your project.

Best Painter's Tape
Bring-A-Trailer

Light Adhesion

If you need to use your tape on gentle or delicate surfaces, then light adhesion tape is the best option. This tape has weaker adhesive, making it perfect for applying to wallpaper, fresh paint, or raw drywall. It adheres best to smoother surfaces. 

This type of tape is perfect for creating custom or unique designs on your wall. This is made easier by the variety of widths the paint comes in. The clean removal time tends to be longer to give you more time to complete your intricate painted design. It will also have UV resistance to prevent degrading of the adhesive that could cause it to not perform as well. 

Medium Adhesion 

This is the solid general use of painter’s tape that most people buy and don’t realize. It works on most interior and some exterior surfaces. It’s strong and safe enough for use on raw building materials, so it’s commonly used in new construction painting. 

You’ll find it comes in a range of widths, typically from a half-inch to two inches. This gives you versatility in how and where you use it. It also has a clean removal time of a couple of weeks to a month. You’ll want to be careful when using this tape on freshly painted or delicate surfaces as it can cause lifting or damage when removed. 

Heavy Duty Adhesion 

You’ll find that this level of adhesion is meant for exterior use on rough surfaces. This includes concrete, brick, stucco, lacquer coatings, vinyl, glass, and rough wood. While it comes in different width options, they tend to be on the wider end of the scale. A nice feature of this tape is that it is UV, humidity, and temperature resistant. This helps it to stick in various weather conditions and climates. 

The clean removal time tends to be the shortest with this tape. This is a result of the stronger adhesive used to stick to surfaces in harsher conditions. Plus, most exterior painting projects tend to finish faster than interior decorative projects. 

Features to Look for in Painters Tape

When comparing different types of painter’s tape, look for one that’s meant for the type of painting project you intend to do. Some tapes are only meant for interior use, while others could be more versatile. You’ll even see some that are suitable for automotive painting projects

The tape needs to provide a tight and consistent seal while also cleanly removing when done. Without this, you risk having to do endless hours of touchup work or paint chip repair. This will ultimately take longer and look worse than if you hadn’t used tape at all. Look for a tape that’s easy to work with and provides consistent performance to ensure a uniform look to your completed project. 

The Most Important Features of Painters Tape

You head to the local hardware or home improvement store and grab the first blue-colored tape you see. But did you know this could be a huge mistake? The color of the tape doesn’t always indicate its quality or performance ability. Next time, stop and pay attention to the label. Look at the width, length, adhesion level, and clean release time. 

Width

You want the width of the tape you use to be wide enough to protect the edge you’ve applied it to. This means for most walls or building locations, a 1.5- to 2-inch width tape will work just fine. If you’re painting a small space or intricate details, then choosing a tape that’s skinnier than 1.5 inches is the better way to go. 

Decorative painting projects where you tape a design on the wall can use any width you want. Just choose the size that works best for the design or pattern you want to achieve. Exterior projects do better with wider tape. You’ll use larger rollers and brushes, so wider tape protects better. 

Length

If you don’t calculate how much tape you’ll need, then you risk running out of tape. This results in you stopping in the middle of your prep work to buy more tape. Most people don’t do this, though, and instead, continue without taping to get the job done. This results in the last portion of your painting project being noticeably different and uneven from everywhere else. 

Most rolls of tape will note the length in yards, but sometimes you’ll see feet. For easier comparison, one yard is equal to three feet. Calculate the square footage of the room or area you plan to paint. Then divide by nine to convert square footage into square yards. Now you know how much tape you need. 

Clean Release Time 

The clean release time is how long you can leave the tape stuck to a surface and still be able to cleanly remove it without leaving residue. The clean release time can vary from a couple of days to several weeks, and sometimes even two to three months. The longer the clean release time is, the more time you have to complete your project. 

Keep in mind that tape tends to stick better and be harder to remove the longer it stays. This is made worse by exposure to sunlight. If your adhered tape is exposed to sunlight, try to remove it as soon as possible. You’ll also only want to stick the tape to the intended surfaces, anything else, and it might not cleanly release as intended. 

Best Painter's Tape

Best Painter’s Tape FAQs

With all of these features and things to think about, do you even need to use painter’s tape? You have masking tape in the garage already; it’s tempting to skip buying more tape and just use that. Or maybe you want to make the buying process easier by just buying what the professionals buy. We have the answers for you. 

Q: Is there a difference between masking tape and painter’s tape?

Yes. The biggest difference is the ability to remove the painter’s tape cleanly. Masking tape has a higher risk of sticking and damaging the underlying surface or leaving residue. 

Q: What tape do professional painters use?

The majority of professional painters use blue painter’s tape because it sticks well to a variety of materials without damaging the underlying surface. 

Q: When should I remove painter’s tape?

You should remove the painter’s tape as soon as the paint dries. This could be up to 24 hours. 

Our Top Pick

Our top pick for the best overall painter’s tape is the FrogTape Multi-Surface Painter’s Tape. It’s a nice general use tape that’s safe for use on various surfaces and has a generous 21-day clean removal time. It also has Edge-Treated PaintBlock Technology to reduce the risk of bleeding. Plus, the pack comes with four 60-yard rolls, which is plenty for any home painting project. 

Final Thoughts

You can’t go wrong with the versatility and quality of FrogTape Multi-Surface Painter’s Tape. If you need something more affordable, the IPG ProMask Blue Painter’s Tape is nice with its two-week clean removal time and ability to stick to a wide variety of surfaces.

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