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How to Store Oil Paint Brushes Overnight

If you are in the middle of your painting and you need to stop for the night, but you don’t want to clean your brush, you need to find a way to store it until the next day that will prevent it from drying out. There is a really easy solution to store your oil paint brushes in a way that will keep them fresh and safe overnight.

So, how do you store oil paint brushes overnight? The best way to store your paint brushes overnight is to either wrap the tip of the oil brush in cling film or store it in a sealed plastic bag. You will need to create a tight seal with some masking tape to prevent any oxygen getting in. It is also best to store it somewhere cool and away from direct sunlight.

It is easy to keep your oil paint brushes fresh for use between coats overnight. As long as you properly place the bristles of the paint brush and create a seal, you will have no problems using the same paint brush the next day. You can even store your paint brush like this safely for up to 48 hours.

How to Store Oil Paint Brushes Between Coats (Overnight)

When you are painting but need to stop for the night, cleaning your paint brushes is likely not on your list of things you want to do. Luckily, you can protect your oil paint brush overnight so you can continue using it the following day. The process is really simple and doesn’t require much effort at all, making it way easier than cleaning your paint brush.

If you are going to use the paint brush within 24 hours of storing it, all you need to do is wrap it really tight in some cling film. You will also want to create a seal around the neck of the paint brush with some masking tape. This will prevent oxygen from reaching the bristles and drying out the paint.

Store your wrapped paint brush in an area that is away from direct sunlight and a heat source. Both of these will speed up the drying process of the paint, which you don’t want to happen while you are storing your brush. 

My favorite and top pick is always Arteza Oil Paint Brushes. They have so many paintbrush options, and the quality is amazing! I usually use Arteza Brushes and paints for all my projects.

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For special offers and discounts, with my link you can also go to the Arteza website and shop their amazing products.

If you are not going to use the paint within 24 hours but just slightly after, you will still follow the steps above, but you will take a couple extra steps. After you have your oil paint brush wrapped and taped, you are going to put it in an airtight plastic bag.

After you place the paint brush in the plastic bag, squeeze all of the air out and close it tightly. You will then want to put the airtight bag in your refrigerator to keep the paint fresh. Since the fridge is a cool, dark place, you don’t need to worry about the paint drying out.

How Do You Keep Oil Paint Brushes from Drying Out?

There are several reasons you want to prevent your oil paint brushes from drying out between coats. If you are just taking a short break and you want to keep your oil paint brush from drying out, the process is much simpler than if you are storing the brush overnight. 

When you are just taking a short break, the only thing you need to do to prevent your oil paint brush from drying out is cover it with a newspaper or cloth and leave some of the brush in the paint. For example, you will leave just the bottom one-third of the bristles in the paint, then lay a cloth or newspaper over the paint and brush before you walk away.

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This will prevent the paint from drying out while you take your break as well as prevent the brush overloading with paint by keeping the whole brush in the oil paint. This will make it easy for you to pick up where you left off and prevent wasting product. 

How Long Can You Leave Oil Paint on Brushes?

You can leave oil paint on paint brushes for about an hour without worrying that it will dry out. If you have to take a break longer than an hour, it is highly recommended that you properly protect the paint brush by wrapping it and placing it somewhere safe. 

Even if your break is just an hour, you should still take precautions and cover your paint brush with a cloth or newspaper. This will work to keep any unnecessary oxygen away from your paint brush and prevent the oil paint from drying out during your short break.

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Can You Wrap Oil Paint Brushes in Cling Film?

Wrapping oil paint brushes in cling film is one of the best ways that you can protect your paint brush from drying out during a long break. In addition to the cling film, you will also need some tape to ensure that the seal between the cling film and the paint brush is airtight and prevents any oxygen from getting into the paintbrush.

While the paint brush will be fine with just the cling film, you can also place it in a plastic sandwich bag and squeeze all of the air out for more protection from oxygen.

Best Paint Thinners for Oil Paint Brushes

There are several different types of paint thinners out there that you can use to clean your oil paint brushes, but they are not all created equal. Some paint thinners will be better than others, and it can be hard to tell which is best if you aren’t familiar with the products.

The most recommended and best paint thinner for cleaning oil paint brushes is Gamsol Oil. It is non-toxic, odorless, and much safer than turpentine. The product is clear, so you don’t have to worry about it staining your brushes or changing the color of the next paint you use.

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Next, there is turpenoid. Turpenoid is an odor-free substitute to turpentine. It works just as efficiently as turpentine but is much safer and ideal for cleaning your oil brushes and thinning your oil paint. 

Of course, turpentine is also a highly recommended paint thinner to use for cleaning your oil paint brushes. It does have an odor and the fumes can be toxic, but it is incredibly efficient and works really well with oil paints and paint brushes.

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Final Thoughts

If you are in the middle of a painting and you need to call it a night, you likely don’t want to clean your paint brushes just to use them again the next day. In this case, you can easily store your paint brushes to keep the paint fresh all night long. The best way to do this is to wrap the bristles as tightly as possible in cling film and tape around the neck to create an airtight seal.

If you aren’t using the paint brush within 24 hours, you will need to take a couple extra steps to protect your paint brush. Place the cling film paint brush in a plastic sandwich bag and squeeze all of the air out. Put the bag in your fridge to protect it from oxygen and prevent any chance of the paint brush drying out.

Make sure to follow all my tips and recommended products to ensure your oil painted project turns out great! Also, don’t forget to check out my other articles for all your painting Q&A’s. Happy painting! 

To view my personal artwork collection click here.  All of my artwork is one of a kind and comes ready to hang. You can also find my work at The Gallery SOHO, in the Pomona Valley Art Association.

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