The Mistake Joanna Gaines Doesn't Want You To Make When Removing Painter's Tape

Whether you're an experienced home painter or an innocent newbie, painting an interior with such skill that it looks professional takes practice, attention to detail, and possibly making mistakes that you can laugh about later. There's always something new to learn, and watching a few tutorials from high-end professionals in home design can save a ton of time and deliver excellent results. Home decorator and author Joanna Gaines has attained expert-level status in the interior design world, and she has one extremely important tip that she's shared with fans to help them avoid a common mistake. When using painter's tape, Gaines warns not to remove it too late in the painting process. 

Gaines loves sharing simple but meaningful painting hacks, like how to prevent spills while pouring paint, and other tips that allow you to work more neatly. While you're painting, you'll most likely need a long chunk of painter's tape to avoid getting smudges of color on the window or ceiling next to the wall you're painting. You may also simply use tape to create a beautiful straight edge on an accent wall. Pulling your tape off at the right time can help you get the best results.

When to remove that painter's tape

Something Joanna Gaines has noticed is that after most people apply painter's tape, they wait until the painted room is completely dry before removing it. Unfortunately, by then it could be too late. You certainly won't have an emergency on your hands, but there is the strong possibility that if you pull off the tape once the paint has dried thoroughly, you'll get a jagged edge instead of a straight one.

What she recommends instead is that you remove the tape much earlier, when the paint is still tacky. However, avoid pulling it off immediately after painting or while the paint is still wet — it has got to be tacky to the touch. To test whether the wall is the right amount of dry, lightly touch the surface near the floor or on a section that won't likely be noticed, just in case your finger leaves a slight imperfection. Water-based acrylic, latex, and oil-based paints all have different drying times, so find out when you should remove the tape by checking with the manufacturer. Also, choosing the right kind of painter's tape is important, since ones with too much adhesive could pull paint off of your wall.