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How to Use and Remove Painter's Tape

Not sure if you want to deal with the hassle of taping? Time to reconsider.

By Christine Egan
Illustration of a person taping before paintingArthur Mount

Taping is not particularly difficult, and it makes painting less stressful and guarantees crisp edges, even if you have a less-than-steady hand with a brush.


1. Start in a corner and take your time. Tear off a tape strip about two feet long. Set it down lightly with one edge abutting the surface to be painted. Lift and adjust as needed for the best fit.


2. Seal the tape tightly with the tip of a spoon or a fingernail. Remove the tape while the paint is still wet by slowly and carefully pulling away from the paint line at a 45-degree angle. If a bit of paint seeps through, wipe it away immediately with a damp cloth. If the tape is left on until the paint dries, removing it can result in peeling.

For more tips, see How to Paint a Room.

Read More About:Painting

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