One of the unsung heroes in any painter’s toolbox is painter’s tape. If you are someone that has done a good number of painting projects, you know that not all painter’s tape is made alike.
While not much is talked about with tape, I feel that it is important to compare and look at the various types of tape available so that the one can find the best painter’s tape for their job.
Below is our painter’s tape reviews. We will go in-depth on many how-to questions for people looking to improve their taping skills and cover our pick for favorite tapes for particular jobs. Not all tapes are created equal and painters tape is no exception. If you are not interested in reading through the reviews and want to know our choice for the #1 painter’s tape, see our top picks below.
Best Painter’s Tape – Top Picks
|Frog Tape Painter's Tape
|** Editor's Choice - Best Painter's Tape **
|Scotch Blue Painter's Tape
|** Best Budget Painter's Tape **
Before we dig into the various types of painting tape, I would like to cover some of my favorite “how to’s” when it comes to painting. These are common questions that I get from friends and co-workers when asking questions about the best way to paint. Let’s dig in.
How To Apply Painter’s Tape Straight?
While it may seem simple before the project, one of the first questions I always get is “How to apply painter’s tape in a straight line?”. This is especially true when painting areas where you do not have borders to use and have very few tools at your disposal. Let’s look at the steps I use to paint straight.
Yardstick, level, pencil
While it may seem easy to get painter’s tape straight, it can be somewhat tricky. The best way that I learned to keep painting tape straight was from an old-timer back in my early painting days and it still applies today. You will always need a level and a yardstick before applying your tape.
Using your yardstick, level and pencil it is important to make light pencil marks in the areas that you will be working on. For example, if I was working on an 8-foot wall and the customer wanted a different color in the middle to the wall I would use my level and ruler to make 4 separate marks up and down the wall.
After making the marks I would use the yardstick to connect these marks and use a level and make sure that they were straight. Once I was done with this I would use several small pieces of tape 1- 2’, and follow the line. After applying one layer, I will then apply one long layer of painter’s tape exactly on top of the first.
How to tape a ceiling for painting?
Taping a ceiling to paint can be easy or difficult depending on the type of ceiling, the height, the angle of the ceiling and many other variables that you may take into consideration. With that being said I will cover the two most popular types of ceilings and that is that traditional flat ceiling and how to tape a popcorn ceiling for painting.
How to tape a flat ceiling for painting: Taping a flat ceiling for painting can be difficult due to the tricks that an eye can play on a painter when looking up. While taping just along the edges of a ceiling is very straightforward. Using painter’s tape on other parts of a ceiling can be tricky. Let’s take a look.
Ladder, Yardstick, Level, Pencil
Much like taping a wall, taping a ceiling for painting can be done with very few tools if you do it the right way. It helps to have two people on this project if at all possible, but it can be done by one person. Warning that safety is key on this as the majority of painting falls come when the painter doesn’t realize that they are tipping their ladder in one way or another because they are focused too much on the job.
Almost identical to the way you can use painter’s tape to keep lines straight on a wall, you can do the same with a ceiling. Yardstick, level, small pencil marks and connect the marks. Just make sure to check your leveling again after applying the tape as some ceilings can throw off your vision and make you think you are painting straight but really are not.
How to tape a popcorn ceiling: Using painter’s tape on a popcorn ceiling is a big “no-no” in the painting world. Painter’s tape will pull the “popcorn” off most of the ceiling and will ruin the whole effect of the ceiling. If you are looking to make straight lines on a popcorn ceiling we suggest using a paint edger tool instead as this will let you create straight lines without ruining the ceiling.
Painters Tape Reviews 2017
Now that we have discussed a few “how to’s” as far as using painter’s tape, we can get into our picks for the best painter’s tape for your particular needs. Let’s look further into some of the candidates for best tape and also one of the battles among two of the most popular painter’s tapes for 2017.
Honestly speaking, outside of these two tapes, there are very few painter’s tapes that compare on the market. I would choose either of these tapes as a recommendation, but I feel that one is slightly better if I am doing a large painting job.
FrogTape Painter’s Tape
** Editor’s Choice – Best Painter’s Tape **
Advocates for FrogTape will tell you that there is no comparison of the Scotch Blue vs. FrogTape debate as they stand by there tape and with good reason. FrogTape has become a favorite tape among painter’s as it not only gets great reviews from customers and DIY people, but it also is a favorite among professional painters.
Pros of FrogTape: Most people love FrogTape because it is easy to remove and prevents the paint from bleeding. Besides this FrogTape also is a very durable tape that can be used for almost any project. It handles any type of weather and does not come unstuck.
Scotch Blue Painter’s Tape
** Best Budget Painter’s Tape **
For those doing small jobs and looking to save money, Scotch Blue is one of the best alternatives to FrogTape. Scotch Blue is very sticky but often does not unpeel like FrogTape. While the price is cheaper than FrogTape, it doesn’t have the versatility for large jobs like FrogTape does.
Which Painter’s Tape is Best: FrogTape vs. Scotch Blue
Much like the age-old debates among favorite soft drinks (Coke vs. Pepsi), favorite light beers (Bud or. Miller) or in a painter’s world Wagner vs. Graco. Two of the most highly used painter’s tape among professionals are FrogTape and Scotch Blue. Let’s take a look at the pros and cons of each and which one you should choose depending on your job.
Let’s take a look at each one of these and what they are best used for when painting.
* Best Painter’s Tape for Trim: FrogTape
If I am doing trim, which is notoriously for bleeding and ruining a nice paint job, I am going towards FrogTape. Once again the bleed factor and the ease of removing are the reasons why I am choosing FrogTape for this.
* Best Painter’s Tape for Textured Walls: FrogTape
I would also choose FrogTape if I plan on taping textured walls. In fact, FrogTape makes a special brand called FrogTape Textured Surface Painter’s Tape that is made exactly for these types of walls. To see more customer reviews of this versatile product, click the button below.
* Best Painter’s Tape for Large Projects: FrogTape
While I may lean towards Scotch Blue for large jobs if I am on a strict budget, I will almost always use FrogTape for my larger jobs. In my profession, lost time is money, so it is a necessity that I am not painting the same spots over and over again. With FrogTape I can tape a large area, use my paint sprayer and know that I can remove my tape without having to paint again 99% of the time.
* Best Painter’s Tape for Small Projects: Scotch Blue
Scotch Blue may be a better choice for small projects where stickability is a key factor in your painting. Anytime I have to wrap the tape around furniture, corners, taping caulk or anything else I will utilize Scotch Blue as this is what it is good at.
* Best Painter’s Tape for Crisp Lines: FrogTape
FrogTape is the choice for straight lines, not even a doubt in my mind. Like I said previously in the Scotch Blue vs. FrogTape debate, even major supporters of Scotch Blue will choose FrogTape when doing lines as this is the products wheelhouse.
* Overall Winner in the FrogTape vs. Scotch Blue review
If I were to choose the best tape I would lean towards FrogTape, as it comes off easier and prevents paint bleed, which is a major factor. If I am looking to save money on a large job, I would go towards Scotch Blue as it is cheaper and does better than other traditional tapes.
While there are several other companies that make painter’s tape, FrogTape and Scotch Blue are two that I stick by, no pun intended, and can handle any job. When doing the painter’s tape reviews, I felt that these were the only two choices in the discussion and until another product comes out that blows me away, I can recommend these two for the best painter’s tape with FrogTape being a favorite for larger jobs.