The Best Paint Brush for Furniture

Wondering what the best paint brush for furniture is? You’re in the right place!

Imagine you are about to paint a dresser that you just bought at a garage sale. You have never painted furniture before, but you have seen it done before and it doesn’t look too difficult. You go to the store and pick up the cheapest brush they have and head home to get started.

However, you quickly realize that you made a mistake. The brush is leaving thick lines and streaks in the paint finish. You notice some of the bristles are falling out and it’s causing your paint job to look terrible.

Feeling frustrated and disappointed, you realize that it would have been better to invest in a quality brush.

It’s easy to understand how someone could make the mistake of selecting the wrong kind of paint brush for furniture. After all, there are so many different types available on the market, and it can be difficult to know which one is right for the job.

As the former owner of a successful chalky finish paint manufacturing company and distributor of all kinds of paint brushes, I learned what set the best brush apart from the rest.

In this article, I’ll review the best paint brushes for furniture and let you know my all time favorite brushes!

For those who want the quick recommendation, here are my top three go-to paint brushes I use for painting furniture. The brands are Country Chic and Dixie Belle Paint Co.  Click the image to check availability and pricing. 

**This post may contain affiliate links, which means I may earn a small commission if you make a purchase using one of these links.  However, I only recommend items I personally love. Thank you for your support of my creative business!**

1. What to consider when choosing the best paint brush for furniture

When it comes to selecting the best paint brush for furniture, there are a few things you’ll want to consider.

Type of paint you’re using

You’ll want to think about the type of paint you’re using. Different types of paints require different types of brushes. In this article specifically, it’s assumed a chalky finish paint will be used. Most chalky finish paints are water-based latex. If you’ll be using an oil based paint, these brushes may not be the best fit for your project.

Your budget

When selecting the best paint brush for furniture painting, a quality brush can run $20, $30 or even over $40 per brush. Don’t let sticker shock creep in. When purchasing from a trusted brand, the paint brush is well worth the higher price tag.

That said, if you are just starting out, I completely understand if a quality brush is simply not in the budget. There was a day when I used whatever brushes I could get ahold of. I even resorted to those cheapo throwaway brushes you can buy in bulk on amazon.

Of course, it meant a lot of streaks and not so great looking finishes, but this was in my early years before I started selling the pieces I finished

Paint Demonstration

2. The common types of brushes available

There are many different types of paint brushes available on the market, and each one has its own advantages and disadvantages.

Let’s dive into the two most common types of paint brushes used for painting furniture…

Natural bristle brushes

Natural bristle paint brushes are made from animal hair, and they are the oldest type of brush. They are tough and durable, but natural bristle brushes can be brittle and difficult to control. While many people use natural bristle brushes to paint furniture, my preference is always with synthetic bristle brushes.

Synthetic bristle brushes

Synthetic bristle paint brushes are made from plastic or synthetic materials, and they are softer than natural bristle brushes. They are flexible and easy to control, making synthetic bristle brushes ideal for painting furniture and other delicate surfaces.

Paintbrush bristles come in a variety of shapes and sizes, so it is important to select a brush that has the right type of bristles for the job. If you are painting a piece of furniture, I recommend using a brush that has synthetic bristles.

3. How to select the best brush for the job

Now that you know about the different types of paint brushes available, how do you go about selecting the best one for the job?

Consider the size of the project

The size of the project will determine the size of the brush you need. If you are painting a small piece of furniture or small wall décor, like wood frames, a 1-2 inch brush should work fine. For larger pieces, a 2-inch or 3-inch brush will be better suited.

Decide on the shape of the brush

The best paint brushes for furniture commonly have a flat or angled head. These are great for getting into tight corners and hard to reach areas.

You may have seen the round paint brushes and wondered why someone would use those. The round paint brushes are great for quickly painting larger areas. Depending on the size of the brush, they can make a project go much faster.

Best Paint Brush for Furniture

4. Tips for using a paint brush properly

Once you have selected the best paint brush for your project, there are a few tips that will help you get the most from it.

For starters always start with a clean paint brush. You may be thinking, ok captain obvious, but you’d be surprised how many people I’ve known to take a dingy ‘ol brush thinking it could produce flawless results (spoiler alert – it won’t).

  • Dip the brush into the paint
  • Scrape off any excess paint

pro tip: for pint and quart size jars, wrap a rubber band around the jar so you can scrape excess paint using the rubber band. It will fall back in the jar without getting all those dry crusties that happen when you scrape the brush on the rim of the jar.

  • For a smoother finish, apply the paint to the furniture in long, even strokes
  • Paint in the direction of the wood grain
  • After the first coat dries, apply a second coat of paint for better coverage
  • Allow the paint to dry completely before moving on to the next step
  • Seal and protect your painted piece with a top coat of sealant or wax
  • Enjoy your beautiful new piece of furniture!

5. How to care for a paint brush

No matter which brush you select for your furniture painting project, proper care is key. Here are a few tips to keep your paint brushes in great shape:

  • Clean the brush with warm water (not hot) and mild soap after each use. Special soap made just for cleaning paint brushes is available, but I often find Dawn dish soap to do the trick.
  • Dab excess water off of the bristles and reshape them with your fingers before storing.
  • Store brush in a dry location and make sure the bristles are not collected together.
  • To keep the bristles soft, wrap them in damp kraft paper – or even a damp paper towel will do the trick- as it dries.
  • If you will not be using your brush for an extended period of time, wrap it in plastic and store in the refrigerator. This will help keep the bristles from drying out.

These tips will help your brush last longer and perform better. With proper care, you can use the same quality brush for all of your future furniture painting projects.

Top picks for the best paint brush for furniture

Now for the more detailed product recommendation portion of this article. Here are my favorite brands of furniture paint brushes and the most common applications I use them for. Click the image to check current price and availability. 

Country Chic Chalk Style Paint Brushes 

Country Chic paint brushes are some of the highest quality brushes available.  When taken care of, they will last for years. 

I use the first brush most commonly, the middle brush is great for smaller projects or projects with corners I need to get into.  The last set pictured is more for decorating or details like a faux marble look. They are the best set of artist paint brushes I’ve come across in all my years of furniture painting. 

Dixie Belle Synthetic Paint Brushes

A close second to Country Chic are Dixie Belle paint brushes. While they sell both natural and synthetic bristle brushes, their synthetic bristle brushes are my fav. 

Best paint brushes for furniture conclusion

Finding the right paint brush for furniture is an important part of the painting process. With so many brushes to choose from, it can be overwhelming.

Selecting a quality brush that fits your project’s needs will help you achieve the best results. When it comes to selecting the best paint brush for furniture, my vote will always be a synthetic bristle brush.

However, it’s important for you to try out different brushes and find one that works best for your painting style. With the right brush, you can transform a piece of furniture with ease.

Use the tips above to find the perfect paint brush for your next DIY project and enjoy beautiful, lasting results!

Best Paint Brush for Furniture

Best paint brush for furniture FAQ

Q. Why do I need to use a quality paint brush when painting furniture?

A. A quality brush will provide better coverage and help you achieve the best results for your project. Cheap brushes may be tempting, but they can often leave behind streaks or bristles in your work, which can be hard to remove. Investing in a good quality brush is important if you want professional-looking results.

Q. How often should I clean my paintbrush?

A. Cleaning your paintbrush after each use is the best way to keep it in good condition and make sure it performs well during each project. Warm water and mild soap should do the trick; special cleaning solutions are also available for purchase from your local hardware store.

Q. What is the best way to store my paint brush?

A. After cleaning your brush, remove any excess water and reshape the bristles with your fingers before storing it in a dry location. You can also wrap the bristles in damp kraft paper or a damp paper towel to keep them soft and prevent them from drying out. For long-term storage, you can wrap the brush in plastic and store it in the refrigerator. This will help preserve it for future use!

Q. What other tips should I keep in mind when selecting a paint brush for furniture?

A. When selecting a brush, choose one that has tightly packed bristles and is the right size for your project. You want it to be small enough to get into tight spaces but big enough to cover larger areas quickly. In my humble opinion, it’s also important to select a synthetic bristle brush; natural bristle brushes tend to leave streaks behind and can be harder to clean and maintain.

Q: What kind of brush gives the smoothest finish on furniture?

A: Synthetic bristle brushes tend to give the smoothest finish on furniture. They are easy to clean and don’t leave streaks behind like natural bristle brushes. When selecting a brush for your project, choose one that is small enough to get into tight spaces but big enough to cover larger areas quickly.

Now that you know all about choosing and taking care of the best paint brush for furniture, you are one step closer to creating beautiful pieces! With the right knowledge and tools, your furniture painting project will be a success.

Best wishes on making all of your future pieces look beautiful and timeless!

Until next time,


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Best Paint Brush for Furniture

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