How to Paint Baseboards the Easy Way :

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How to Paint Baseboards the Easy Way

How to paint or repaint baseboards the easy way and get professional looking straight lines

Where are my, “I don’t need tape I’ll just free hand it” DIY-ers at!

I am right there with you waving my hand in the air wildly.

When it comes to paint projects I am not always known for tapping everything off…

Mainly because I also have a toddler running around, so things need to get done the quickest way possible.

When it comes to painting or repainting baseboards though, I make an exception because this hack uses tape and saves a ton of time!

I will never free hand paint baseboards, quarter round, or shoe moulding again and after you see this method you won’t either.

The Best Way to Paint Baseboards


  • Baseboard Paint (semi-gloss/gloss/matte)
  • Painters Tape
  • Caulk
  • Putty Knife

Baseboard Paint Sheen

Which sheen is best to use on baseboards and trim is a hot topic for a lot of DIY-ers…

While you could use any sheen your heart desires, different sheens do different things.

Choose a semi or high gloss sheen for your baseboards if you want the easiest to clean option.

Baseboard Paint Sheen

Personally I am a huge fan of matte paint right now because I don’t love the shiny look, personal preference.

So for this bunk bed/playroom renovation I will be using a matte sheen for the baseboards and trim.

Prep the Baseboards for Paint

I don’t have time for a huge amount of prep work but if you are painting new baseboards a lot isn’t necessary.

After you install the new baseboards and quarter round, fill and sand any nail holes. Then just vacuum the dust off them.

Prep the Baseboards for Paint

If you are repainting baseboards you may want to remove any old caulk and sand any spots that the paint is peeling in.

When you buy traditional moulding pieces they come pre-primed, however the height of baseboards I want is usually too expensive in the pre-primed option.

Prep the Baseboards for Paint

In order to get expensive and chunky looking baseboards on a budget I use 1×6 pine boards instead.

It saves me a lot of money, but it also means I have to prime them myself.

You can find my simple method for adding fancy window trim here!

How to Paint Baseboards

After the baseboards and quarter round are prepped and ready to be painted you can move onto the game changing portion of this project.

How to Paint Baseboards

Use painters tape to tape off the floor 1/8″ away from the trim, just a tiny sliver of floor should be showing.

How to Paint Baseboards

Next, use a putty knife to press the tape onto the floor.

You would be surprised at what a difference this step makes, it’s impossible to press the tape down completely with just your finger.

The Straightest Baseboard Paint Lines

Now caulk the seam, working in small runs will help maintain the caulk consistency.

After the caulk is dry simply paint the baseboards and quarter round.

The Straightest Baseboard Paint Lines

Some people prefer to use a small roller for baseboards but I think a brush works just fine.

The Straightest Baseboard Paint Lines

After you are finished painting the trim, while the paint is still wet start pulling up the tape.

These are the cleanest paint lines I have ever had when painting baseboards and quarter round!

How to Paint Baseboards the Easy Way

This method also saved me a ton of time because there wasn’t any paint to clean up off the floor and I didn’t have to be so precise during painting.

One big tip though is to make sure you pull the tape up while the paint is still wet, if not you might have to use a razor blade to remove the tape.

Painted Baseboards, Quarter Round, Trim Reveal

For this bunk bed/playroom makeover I painted all the baseboards, trim, quarter round, and the bead board the same color, Skipping Stones by Dunn Edwards DURA.

How to Paint Baseboards the Easy Way

The top half of the wall will be wallpapered in a subtle checkered print.

That’s a wrap for this portion of the project though!

What do you think about this baseboard painting method and the color we chose?

How to Paint Baseboards the Easy Way

You can follow along with the rest of this bunk bed/playroom makeover here!

You Might Also Like:

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How To Paint Tile That’s Durable: Bathroom Makeover Part One

DIY Woodgrain Finish with Paint: Table & Chairs Makeover

How To Paint Window Frames & Trim: The No Tape Way

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