While you could paint a room with just a paintbrush and a bucket of paint, you may not get the best results. Paint can easily splatter onto the floor. You may also have trouble creating a straight line when using a different color on the ceiling or an accent wall.

If you want your interior paint job to look as if it was done by a professional, you should invest in a few essential tools.

Paint Rollers

Using a paint roller will save you a lot of time. A roller also makes it easier to apply light, even coats of paint across large surfaces such as the walls and ceilings.

A typical paint roller frame includes one roller refill. You may want to purchase a few extra refills, especially if you plan to use more than one color.

Paint Brushes

A paintbrush is still an essential tool for interior painting even if you use a paint roller. The brush is necessary for painting near the edges of the walls and ceilings along with painting the baseboards and trim. You may also need a brush to complete touch-ups after finishing the paint job.

Use a one-inch or two-inch chisel trim brush or angled brush on the window and trim. For the edges of the walls and other flat areas, consider using a four-inch square trim brush.

Putty Knife and Compound

Before you paint, you should fill any holes or cracks in the drywall. Use a putty knife to apply joint compound to these areas.

You can purchase a small container of the ready-to-use joint compound, such as a one-pint or two-pint container. The compound can be applied directly to the wall without any mixing.

The type of putty knife is not a major decision as it is simply used to fill in the holes and scrape away excess compound.


After the joint compound has dried, you will need to sand the area with sandpaper. Use 100- or 120-grit sandpaper to create a smooth surface for your paint job. When sanding near the outer edges of the dried compound, try to smooth the material so that it blends into the wall as much as possible.

Ladder or Step stool

Attempting to reach overhead to paint the ceiling is bad for your back, shoulders, and neck. You will also have difficulty applying an even coat of paint. You should always use a ladder or step stool to reach the ceiling even if the low ceiling is within reach.

When working in an area with a two-story opening, such as an entrance or foyer, you may also want to use an extension pole that attaches to the paint roller. This will allow you to reach further without climbing as high on the ladder.

Essential Painting Supplies

Along with the tools listed, there are a few supplies that you may find helpful. Tape and drop cloths help protect floors, furniture, doors, and windows. You can also use tape for creating straight lines or preventing one color from bleeding into another.

You do not need a lot of tools for an interior painting project. However, ensuring that you have these essential items can make the project go a lot more smoothly.