1: Clean, clean and clean again!
Ever started painting on a brand new white canvas only to have your masterpiece prematurely ruined by a sneaky bit of paint lurking in the depths of your brushes bristles?! Well we have and we can tell you it’s not pleasant! Avoid instances like this by giving your brush a really good clean and then when you’re happy that it’s pristine, CLEAN IT TWO MORE TIMES!! Paint is really tricky to remove from the bristles of brushes, so wash them in warm soapy water two times (but be gentle!) and then one final time in warm clear water. Et voila! You’re ready to create the next Mona Lisa!
2. Condition your brushes
This might sound crazy, especially if you’re like me and barely condition you’re own hair, but every month you should give your brushes a little extra TLC and soak them in hair conditioner. Place your beloved brushes in the conditioner for ten minutes, rinse off in warm water and sculpt them into the shape they were when your first bought them. This really works and not only will your brushes look and feel brand new, they will also live long, healthy lives!
3. Store your brushes correctly
Brushes can lose their shape very quickly, especially when they are left to dry in the wrong position. Always store your brushes in an upright position and NEVER EVER leave them facing downwards in water or turps overnight.
4. Give them a hair cut!
Ok maybe not a hair cut, more like a trim! When your older brushes are looking a bit worse for wear try cutting off stray bristles. If they really are on their last legs try reshaping them, chopping off the top bristles and giving a more defined shape to the bristles nearest the brush handle. Toni & Guy eat your heart out!
5. Use the correct brush the correct way
Using the wrong paintbrush for the wrong job can damage the bristles. When painting large areas use bigger, thick bristled brushes, don’t be tempted to use a smaller more delicate ones as they’ll get damaged. When applying paint don’t ‘push’ paint into the canvas or splay the bristles around the canvas to spread paint, this will also cause damage.