Clean paint brushes immediately after use. Do not soak brushes in solvent or water, as this can damage the bristles. Consider using one set of synthetic painting tools for oil-based products and another set for water-based products. It is much easier to clean the paint brushes if you don’t switch back and forth between the two types of bases.
Cleaning oil-based paints, varnishes, lacquers and shellacs from your paint brush.
Closely follow the manufacturer’s instructions to select the proper cleaning solvent (mineral spirits or paint thinner for paint and varnish, denatured alcohol for shellac, etc.). Pour the solvent into a container and dip the paint brush into the solvent. Work thinner through the brush bristles, dipping up and down in container several times. Spin the paint brush into a waste area to remove excess thinner and then repeat process with a clean container and clean thinner.
Cleaning water-based paints from your paint brush.
A mixture of warm water and mild soap suds is the best cleaning solution for water-based paints. Prepare soapy water and pour into a clean container. Dip the paintbrush into the mixture, working the soap through the brush bristles. Follow with a clear water rinse. Repeat the process if necessary. Always use a clean container with clean soapy water and follow with a clear water rinse. For stubborn water-based paints, try mineral spirits or lacquer thinner, followed by warm soapy water and a clear water rinse.