Add to these the obvious of course; use a drop cloth, clean your supplies right after use etc, etc - but some of these might be lesser-known helpers. (all tips are based on using latex paints)
1. ALWAYS paint in bare feet.
This is super-important because it lets you feel when you've dropped paint. Even if you are using a drop cloth, drips happen and shoes won't allow you to feel the paint before walking it through your house.
2. Before painting - lube-up! Cover any areas that might get paint on them with skin cream. Any skin cream is fine, just make sure that you cover hands, face, arms etc. What this does is make the paint really easy to wash off afterwards.
3. When pouring your paint into trays, make sure you are pouring from the side of the can that is not your language.
It seems inevitable that you will either run out of paint just short of your project completion, or have extra (it's never just right). By having all the paint spills on the side of the can that you can't read, you leave the name, base, colour etc as well as the directions on application and drying times clear. Trust me, there will be times when you'll need to refer to this and having it covered with paint will frustrate the heck out of you.
4. Buy the rollers that the paint store recommends. Believe it or not, they are not trying to up-sell you.
Certain paints need to be applied with a certain nap - for instance, Aura paint is supposed to cover in one to two coats, so the roller used with it is very dense and can hold and apply a lot of paint in one swipe. Using a roller with a thinner nap won't allow as thick a coat and will leave you having to do three or more coats.
5. Between coats, wrap your roller in a plastic bag (without rinsing). You can remove it from the handle with the bag itself;
6. If you are going to keep the rollers for more than a few days, wrap the plastic bag in a wet cloth. It will dry over time, but it will ensure that no air gets into the bag to dry the paint on the rollers.
You can even store them in the fridge or freezer if it's going to be a prolonged time between coats.
I usually keep them until the entire project is complete - it seems there's always one or two little spots that need a touch up just when you think you're done.
7. When putting the lid back on the paint can, always cover it with a cloth before hammering back into place. This will capture the little spurts that sneak out as the lid wedges itself back in.
8. Save your money on edgers. I've tried a few different models and I never have any luck. You have to have EXACTLY the right pressure to get the perfect edge they advertise. I have much better luck with a 2" angled brush held at a 45 degree angle to the corner. I won't profess to have steady hands - no one would allow me to do open-heart surgery - but a smooth and steady wipe will leave you with better results than any edgers I've come across.
9. Wash your brushes and roller handles as thoroughly as you do the bristles.
This may seem silly, but leaving one layer of paint on the handle today, then another a week or so down the road will eventually lead to a gunky build-up on the handle itself. If you're like me, you tend to reach for the nice clean handled tools first, so not keeping it clean just means you might as well throw it out now for how often it will get used in the future.
10. The best cloth to wipe up spills and drips with is a polyester or polyester-nylon blend - not cotton. Cotton will soak up the paint and wipe it away, but the very next spill you go to wipe up will have the initial spill spreading everywhere. Even if you thoroughly rinse the cloth - you won't be able to get all of the paint out and it will cause a mess. A polyester cloth - like polar fleece will wipe up beautifully and also doesn't hold the paint so you can rinse it and use it over and over again.
These may be redundant, or seem silly - but they work for me.
Trust me - all of these I've learned the hard way.
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