The Clever Vacuum Sealer Hack That Keeps Wet Paint Brushes From Drying Out

Gathering professional-quality tips and planning ahead is crucial for any paint job, as there are so many details to juggle, such as whether to use latex or oil-based paint, choosing a color that sings, handling painter's tape with precision, and protecting surfaces. And that's not even the half of it. Despite good planning, you might get interrupted or find you can't complete your project in one session. But did you know that if you're in the middle of a paint job, a vacuum sealer can help you preserve your wet paintbrush so you don't have to clean it and start over? While this isn't the only secret to keep your paint gear from drying out overnight, it might be one of the very best!

Whether it's a planned interruption or a surprise, as soon as you realize you need to put the project on hold, carefully bring your wet paintbrush over to your vacuum sealer, perhaps transporting it with some newspaper underneath to prevent a mess on the floor. Using the machine, create a custom-sized bag that's sealed on one end and large enough to hold your brush. A good rule of thumb is to allow three spare inches on top — that's where you'll vacuum seal it closed. You can make the bag even bigger if you think you'll be opening and resealing it a few times. Once you're done, you can store the baggy next to your paint can and your brush will be supple and ready to go when you are.

Why this vacuum sealer hack is the best method

A common alternative to this hack is to surround a wet brush with plastic wrap, and while that can work for a few hours, vacuuming sealing it is by far the better method. If you're the fortunate owner of a vacuum sealer, you already know how well it works to add weeks to the life of your food — and it offers the same benefits here. Your brush can stay pliant for hours, days, or several weeks of painting, buying you more time to complete the project without having to worry about unexpected life interruptions.

The machine works by sucking all the air out and then heat sealing the bag, effectively removing the oxygen that would otherwise cause the paint to harden and dry. You can't get a genuine seal from plastic wrap even if you close the gap the best you can with some tape; air will still leak in. Also, using the sealer is a super rapid hack (it might take you a minute), and, best of all, it will prevent you from wasting paint thinner or mineral spirits every time you clean your brush. Then, you'll only need to do one final clean-up of the brush after the job is complete, rather than multiple washings throughout the life of the project.