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40 Uses of Painter’s Tape for Thrifty Homeowners

It turns out painter's tape is a handy household accessory you'll love to have around your home. Even if you don't use it for house painting.

Painter's tape boasts an acrylic adhesive that does not leave a sticky residue. It's lightweight, UV-resistant, and strong while easy to tear.

40 Uses for Painter's Tape

In the Kitchen

  • Chip clip
  • Seal food packages such as cereal, bread, or crackers
  • Label food containers with contents and date for the fridge
  • Label canning jars

Around the House

  • Use in place of post-it notes
  • Label files, bins, shelves, cabinets, and supplies
  • Use behind pictures that slide in their frames
  • Pick up pet hair off clothing and furniture
  • Bundle items for packing or storing
  • Mark furniture placement for laying out a room
  • Mark placement of wall hangings and picture frames
  • Label and/or bundle electrical cords so you know what belongs to what
  • Garage sale price stickers

Kids and Games

  • Make roads on the floor for toy cars
  • Indoor hopscotch or other activities
  • Label school supplies and lunch boxes
  • Baby proof the house or a hotel room
  • Outdoor scavenger hunts or trail markers
  • Label drink cups
  • Mark finish lines
  • Keep a roll in the diaper bag for all sorts of the unexpected
  • Reminder signs (chore list, brush your teeth, close the door)

Temporary Decorations

  • Christmas cards
  • Children's artwork
  • Stick frameless photos on the wall
  • Notes and signs
  • Streamers and other party decors
  • Tape down a tablecloth


  • Marking quilts
  • Wrap around your finger to use as a thimble
  • Remove loose threads on quilts and other sewing projects
  • Mark straight lines for cutting, drawing, painting, or scrapbooking
  • Catch-all for small items like pins, tacks, and buttons
  • Placeholder for instructions, parts, and pieces

Personal Uses

  • Temporary band-aid
  • Create a DIY French tip manicure
  • Labels for identifying your personal belongings
  • Remove lint from clothing
  • Cover lights from electronics when you want total darkness
  • Leave a note on your door for the UPS guy

Blue painter's tape - 40 uses for thrifty homeowners - ProTEK Painters Newton MA

Painter's Tape FAQs

Q: Why is painter's tape blue?

The medium blue color is a registered trademark owned by 3M. It distinguishes ScotchBlue™ Painter’s Tape from its competitors. Other brands include FrogTape, Painter's Mate, and Duck.

Q: Are there different types of painter's tape?

Original ScotchBlue™ Painter's Tape is ideal for painted walls and trim, woodwork, glass, metal including curved or uneven surfaces.

It can be removed cleanly for up to 14 days, even in direct sunlight. The adhesive doesn’t soften or transfer when the tape is wet. 3M also offers surface-specific options such as Trim + Baseboards, Walls + Wood Floors (for delicate surfaces), Platinum Exterior, and Platinum Interior.

Check out the Scotch Blue surface guide or step through their Product Selection guide. Be sure to review usage and surface recommendations if you use another brand.

Q: Can I use painter's tape on freshly painted surfaces?

"Freshly painted" means any surface that has been painted within 30 days. You must wait at least 24 hours before applying tape designed for delicate materials to a freshly painted surface. Check with the manufacturer to ensure you get the type specially formulated for delicate surfaces.

Q: Can I use painter's tape outdoors?

Yes. The water-based adhesive and its UV-resistance can stand up to rainy weather and direct sunlight. The adhesive will not transfer to glass material such as windows. However, it won't stick well to already wet or damp surfaces.

Q: When was painter's tape invented?

3M invented the product now known as ScotchBlue™ Painter’s Tape in 1988. It was originally developed for use in two-toned painting on automobiles. It revolutionized the masking tape industry because it was the first tape developed that resists UV light and allows for longer masking times.

Q: What's the difference between masking tape and painter's tape?

Masking tapes use a rubber-based adhesive that is not UV resistant and cannot be left on a surface for extended periods of time. Masking tape is ideal for use on non-damageable surfaces, such as unfinished wood, brick, concrete and carpet.

Roll the Tape!

As professional painters, we always have this stuff around the house. We probably take for granted how versatile and useful it is.

Try it yourself. Keep a roll in the junk drawer, with craft supplies, tucked in with office supplies, in the glove box of your car, or in your garage. You'll be amazed at how many creative and inexpensive uses you'll come up with for painter's tape when it's easily accessible.

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