How to Paint Trim Without Brush Strokes

Paint can be a great way to update the look of any room, but it does have one drawback – brush strokes. Many people don’t want their walls covered in visible brush strokes and paint over them with a roller or paint sprayer. This is fine if you’re going for that textured look, but what if you want professional-looking trim?

There’s an easy way to get rid of those pesky brush strokes without resorting to a roller or sprayer! In this blog post, we’ll show you how to paint trim without brush strokes. The first thing you need is an ordinary foam makeup sponge. You can find these at most beauty supply stores for only a few dollars. Read on to know more!

How to Paint Trim Without Brush Strokes

12 Ways on How to Paint Trim Without Brush Strokes:

1. Paint Everything First:

If you want to eliminate brush strokes, begin by painting everything before starting with the trim. This could not seem like it would work, but because the walls are already painted (complete with brushstrokes), it is a simple matter of painting right above them while covering any undesired brush marks. Then, after the walls have dried, paint over them again. This process may be repeated ad infinitum until you are satisfied with the way it looks.

2. Use a Painted Before Trim:

If you do not want to paint everything but still wish to avoid brush strokes on your trim, you are painting over before decoration works well. The key is that the trim must have been painted with oil-based paint so it will stick. Allow the color on your before trim to dry for at least two days, then tape your new trim right over the top of it.

3. Never Paint Over Stain:

If you are fearful that painting over dried stain might not be strong enough or cause future problems, simply do not paint over your stained trim. There are various products that you can use to paint right over stains without the need for an undercoat, but if you prefer not to, this is a reasonable alternative.

4. Use a Primer:

Painted With Oil based Paint

Before painting your trim with any enamel-based paint, a primer must be used first. Primer does not paint over your trim, and it simply prepares the surface. Primers must be used before painting trim that has previously been painted with oil-based paint because if it is not primed properly, this can cause future problems, including cracking and peeling.

5. Use a Paint Sprayer:

If you have a paint sprayer, it saves a great deal of time and is extremely easy to apply. Since this type of device does not allow any straying or going outside the lines, there will be no brush strokes. However, if you have only a small area to cover, using a brush may take less time than preparing your trim for spraying (priming, taping).

6. Use a Paint Pen:

Some people like using paint pens to paint their trim because they are lightweight and easy to use. They clean up quickly, too, without leaving any brush strokes behind. If you decide to use this technique, then make sure that the pen that you select is made for painting trim; otherwise, any brush strokes that it may leave will only be hidden.

7. Use Stencils:

The act of stenciling can help you to eliminate brushstrokes as well due to how they are produced. The key is to use a stencil adhesive or spray so your stencil does not move when applying the paint. If the stencil moves, there is nothing to prevent brushstrokes from occurring in certain sections of your trim or wall.

The Act of Stenciling Can Help You

8. Use a Foam Roller:

Foam rollers are an excellent method for covering surfaces quickly and without any brush strokes. While it is not necessary, many people find that it helps to apply a primer first, then paint right over that.

9. Use an Airless Paint Sprayer:

An airless paint sprayer is another time-saving method for applying a trim. Once again, though, if you have not primed your surface first and want to avoid brush strokes, this may be a good option for you.

10. Use a Paint Shield:

A paint shield is an accessory that attaches to the end of your paintbrush. This enables you to use “cutting in” techniques without worrying about painting beyond where you want to or leaving behind any brush strokes. If you do not have one, several companies, including Zinsser, sell paint shields.

A Paint Shield Is an Accessory

11. Use a Paint Outfit:

Another common alternative to avoid brush strokes is to use a painting outfit. In this case, the sponge sits on top of your paintbrush, just like a shield would. The advantage that the protection has over an outfit is that you can see what you are painting.

12. Use a Fan Brush:

If you choose to use a brush when painting instead of a paint shield or outfit, then using a fan brush may be your best bet to ensure no strokes are left behind. This type of brush is typically used for applying designs and lettering, but if applied correctly, it will not leave any marks or show how your paint was applied.

Some Tips and Suggestions:

  1. Cover as much as possible, including the window sills. If you accidentally splatter paint on a section where you don’t want it, let it dry completely and scrape or sand off.
  2. If your walls are textured, light coats of paint will build up to look smooth over time. 
  3. Use a brush with a small head to avoid big paint drips. You can also get a small mini roller for this purpose.
  4. Roll out any trim before painting, and always roll the bottom edge of your wall first to avoid getting paint on your hands while reaching up to the top.
  5. If you need more than one coat of paint, use a semi-gloss sheen.
  6. Use a brush with a medium head to paint the wall itself and add thicker, more visible coats of paint in an accent color behind or below your trim when you have multiple coats applied.
  7. If your walls are super textured, it’s okay to use foam brushes or sponges because you won’t be able to see brush strokes if your wall is already textured.


Don’t have the time or patience to paint trim? Here are some tips for getting around this tedious task. First, use a sponge-on primer and latex paint with an angled painting blade to avoid brush strokes. Then, if you want your trim to look crisp, wait until it’s mostly dry before sanding down any rough edges that the blade may have created.

Lastly, seal the surface of your new wall color using a high-quality acrylic gloss enamel. This will give your painted trim long-lasting protection from dirt and spills while also making it easier to clean in between touch-ups! We hope this blog post on how to paint trim without brush strokes has been helpful. If you have any questions to ask feel free to comment below!

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