Peeking Behind the Mask: Selecting the Right Masking Tape

Masking tape isn’t a one-size-fits-all solution. Choosing the right tape for the right job is more important than you may think. With the ideal tape for your application, you can simultaneously eliminate waste and increase production.

There are several different grades of masking tape. Within each grade, there are even more types of tape to select. There’s general purpose, painter’s, and performance making tape. Let’s explore these three types to help you determine what’s best for each of your projects.

General Purpose Masking Tape

While general purpose is categorized as a masking tape, these products shouldn’t be used as a paint maskant. Strong adhesives and extremely thin paper properties increase the potential for adhesive residue or frustrating tearing during removal. These tapes are best used for bundling, marking, or seaming paper or film.

Painter’s Masking Tape

Painter’s tape was developed to resolve the issue of tapes curing after being left in place for extended periods of time, much like general purpose masking tapes. Today, painter’s tapes can be UV resistant and come in 7 day, 14 day, and 30 day tapes, which can be made to resist latex paint moisture. Manufacturers have recently developed coatings to expand when in contact with latex paint and seal the edges to give a crisp, clean mask line.

Performance Masking Tape

Used in industrial applications, these tapes resist paint and coating solvents. They’re also designed to withstand the temperatures required to cure coatings used in an industrial setting. Performance tapes are also made to adhere and cleanly remove from the many industrial application surfaces.

Randy Emmons
Randy Emmons