Clean Oil Paint Brushes

How To Clean Oil Based Brushes

The best way to clean oil-based paint brushes and oil-based primers is by using paint thinner i.e Acetone or mineral spirits. Soak your paint brush then use a wire brush and brush comb to clean the bristles.  Mineral spirit is less aggressive on your skin and the environment than paint thinners but almost as effective. 

Source: Youtube-howtopaintahouse

Clean Oil Based Paint

If you want clean oil-based paint off of brushes and rollers but also want to use something less aggressive than paint thinner you should consider Mineral spirits. 

  1. We usually let our brushes soak for 15-20 minutes before cleaning them at 518 Painters in Albany NY.
  2. Then we use a wire brush to gently remove the oil paint from the bristles.
  3. With a brush comb, we will then comb through the bristles to get the paint that is built up in between. 
  4. Dip your brush in the bucket of paint thinner/mineral spirits frequently as you go.


Personally, I think that Mineral Spirit works just as well as paint thinner on oil paintbrushes. 

You should always use natural bristle brushes with oil-based paint and primers.

natural bristle brush for oil based paint

Natural bristle brushes make a painting with oil paints and primers much easier and they are much easier to clean.

Cleaning Oil Paint Off Your Hands And Skin

Cleaning oil-based paint on your hands and skin can be a pain to clean off.


If you try to scrub off oil paints and primers you can end up wasting hours with little to no result.

Don’t even waste your time trying to clean oil off your paintbrushes with just soap and water.

A natural way to clean oil paint off your skin is by using coconut cooking oil or even olive oils.

See for yourself how cooking oil takes off oil paint without damaging your skin and having to smell like paint thinner.

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