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Finding the Best Tape for the Job
The Right One Can Make All the Difference

As a paint professional, you understand why proper preparation is key to a high-quality paint job. Whether an interior color update or a foundation-to-rooftop exterior revamp, every successful project starts with a thorough assessment of your surfaces and its condition. Starting with a clean, patched, sanded surface can help you save time and money. You have to make sure you have the right tools for a job – especially when it comes to tape!


Considering the volumes of tape professional painters use on the job, it makes sense to pause and ask yourself if the tape you typically use meets your projects’ needs. Why? Well, switching to a tape specifically designed for the project paves the way for crisper lines, higher-quality results, and less rework. These actions could lead to meaningful cost savings over time by avoiding costly rework.


Pro painter taping wall


According to 3M Company — a leader in painter’s tapes and the owner of the Scotch® Brand — tape plays an essential role in the painting process — but not all tapes are the same. Therefore, it’s important that painting professionals understand the array of taping options and their distinct applications.


Consider these three factors when searching for the perfect tape for your project:

  1. Surface/Materials — Do you regularly work with metal, plastic, cardboard, or glass? Are the surfaces smooth, porous, irregular, or rough? Once you determine the specific materials and surfaces you may paint, make sure the tape you choose adheres properly to the surface. The last thing you want to do is repair damage from using too strong of adhesive on a freshly painted surface (at least 24-hours old), or damage varnish from hardwood floors, so Scotch™ Delicate Surface Painter’s Tape would be the right choice. Tackle rough, tough to stick to surfaces such as brick with Scotch™ Rough Surface Painters Tape.


  1. Environment — What kind of conditions does the tape need to withstand? Is the project interior or exterior? Are extreme high or low temperatures involved? What about humidity, moisture, direct UV or sunlight?


  1. Time — How long does the tape need to remain on the surface? ScotchBlue™ Original Painter’s Tape will stay in place for up to 14 days.


Taking these factors into account will help you narrow the field and eventually lead you to the most suitable tape for your applications.


Types of Tape

Once you identify your project’s needs, you’re well-equipped to make an informed decision. Whether the job calls for a tape that is tried-and-true, cross-functional, or highly specialized, Scotch™ Brand offers the following solutions to help you succeed:


ScotchBlue TM Multi-Surface Painter’s Tapes
ScotchBlueTM Original Painter’s Tape & ScotchBlueTM Sharp Lines Painter’s Tape 2093



  • Medium adhesion and excellent UV resistance
  • Great for trim, painted walls, tile, and glass
  • Can be used for outdoor applications
  • Cleaner removal without any surface damage when left on for longer periods of time, compared to Scotch Masking Tapes


Scotch® Surface-Specific Painter’s Tapes
Scotch® Rough Surface Painter’s Tape 2060, Scotch® Delicate Surface Painter’s Tape 2080 & Scotch® Exterior Surface Painter’s Tape 2097

  • Offer better results and require less rework for specific applications, including rough surfaces such as brick or concrete, delicate or freshly painted surfaces, or exterior projects.


Scotch® Masking Tapes
Scotch® Contractor Grade Masking Tape 2020Scotch® Heavy Duty Masking Tape 2020+

  • Great for every-day use on non-damageable surfaces
  • Strong adhesion and shorter removal times
  • Best on durable surfaces like vinyl, carpet, metal, and plastic


Still not sure which tape is right for you? Check out Scotch’s Tape Comparison Chart or take the Product Selector Quiz and get your answer with just a few clicks.


Good Prep = Best Results

Now that you’ve found the tape(s) you need, it’s time to put your plan into action, starting with high-quality preparation – which involves more than just taping. Be sure to assess the condition of the surfaces, fix any holes or wall damage, and sand uneven surfaces until they are smooth, clean, and ready to be painted.


Pro painter applying tape to ceiling


Check out the following 3M products:


3M Pro Grade Precision Sanding Paper

  • Great for construction, woodworking, carpentry, and home improvement projects such as paint and drywall sanding
  • No-Slip Grip™ Durable Backing reduces hand fatigue
  • Premium mineral grits


3M Pro Grade Precision Dust Channeling Sanding Sponge

  • Multi-use sanding sponges
  • Can be used wet or dry
  • Premium mineral provides faster sanding
  • Clog-resistant
  • Channels dust away from sanding surface


For more information, please visit


This article was created in partnership with 3M.

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2 responses to “Finding the Best Tape for the Job”

  1. Ben Johnson says:

    Do you sell Painters Tape if yes email me with the models for me to select and proceed.

    • Riley Shear says:

      Hi Ben,

      Behr does not sell painter’s tape, but we highly recommend the various 3M tapes listed in the article.

      The BEHR PRO Team

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