I'm currently painting my walls, and having a constant issue with different brands of masking tape pulling the backing off with it. I've tried non-branded, branded and low-tack.

To prepare, I ensure the backing is clean of dust with no loose pieces. I run the masking tape on my trousers to make it less tacky and start, placing the masking tape on 4" at a time, ensuring a tight fit pushing it on.

I do my painting etc and immediately start to pull the masking tape off, however, the backing paint/wallpaper the masking tape is adhered to, is also pulled off.

This is pointing to my prep/implementation of the tape, but I am unsure what I am doing wrong?


To Clarify, the paint under the masking tape is a final coat of emulsion - usually dulux or Farrow and Ball. The final coat is on top of two lots of undercoat of brilliant white emulsion.

The tape is on for no more than 20mins/30mins and when being pulled off to remove, it is also tearing the colour paint behind it

  • 1
    How long are you leaving the tape in place? The only problem I have had with masking tape is leaving it on two long, never had any problem with blue tape. Is the paint that is pealing off the problem not proper adhesion to the surface? If the paint peels off with a fingernail it's not the tape but improper surface prep or wrong type over the existing surface. – Ed Beal Nov 29 '18 at 15:33
  • Op says immediately @EdBeal – Kris Nov 29 '18 at 15:52
  • "backing paint" - is this a primer coat or previous finish coat? What kind of paint - acrylic or oil? What's that paint adhered to? "Wallpaper" - what kind of wallpaper? Freshly applied or ages old? Is it a paper-backed wallpaper, vinyl-backed, or something else. Maybe some pictures of the damage and the types of tape might help, too. – FreeMan Nov 29 '18 at 16:35
  • In the realm of things which are sticky, or to be more precise have a calibrated level of stickiness, one company rules the world, and that is 3M. It's the gold standard. Nobody ever got fired from a paint company for speccing 3M tape. Are you having this problem with 3M tape? Is it new tape? – Harper - Reinstate Monica Nov 29 '18 at 17:08
  • @EdBeal - The tape itself is on the wall for no longer than half hour from initial placement, I haven't used blue tape yet (am in the UK) – PCF Nov 29 '18 at 19:02

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