Paint isn’t as permanent as you might think! If you’ve made an error with your acrylics or oils, there is a way to fix it: Pick up a painting scraper. Featuring a sharp blade, this tool makes quick work of dried pigment; you can use it to lift paint off your canvas without ruining the fabric and without having to use any solvents. Scrapers are also great tools for cleaning off your palette and cleaning up your work space. Below, we highlight some of our favorites.
RGM Scraper Knife No. 109
Our favorite scraping tool is made to last, comfortable to hold, and pretty inexpensive to boot. Made in Italy, it features an asymmetrical multi-angled blade made of tempered steel that is firmly fitted into a solid wood handle and secured with a brass ferrule. It is beautifully weighted, and the blade is offset so you can maintain a comfortable hand position while removing paint from a flat surface. The edges are sharp, smooth, and durable to withstand some serious scraping and bending. We’re fans of the four-sided blade, which provides a nice range of tips and edges to suit all kinds of jobs.
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Richeson Canvas Scrapers
These sleek scrapers are a great upgrade pick. Each features a firm and weighty wooden handle that’s curved to fit comfortably in your hand, and a steel blade that is sharp, smooth, and slightly folded so you can position it with precision. Choose from a long blade measuring 4⅜ inches or a short, 2⅝-inch blade; the latter is double-edged so you can scrape more efficiently.
ALSO A GOOD CHOICE
Bates Paint Scraper
This is a high-functioning tool that is ideal for removing paint from wood or metal. The rust-resistant steel blade features lots of odd angles and curves so you can not only scrape paint but also pull nails, gouge materials, and even open bottles and cans. The scraping blade is sharp, curved, and generously sized so you can cover more of your work surface in less time. Note that while artist-grade scrapers tend to have some flex, this one is extremely stiff, which makes it a sturdy workhorse if you’re dealing with stubborn layers of paint.
A GREAT ALTERNATIVE
Princeton Catalyst Mini Blade No. 2
With a blade made of silicone, this angular scraper is a little different from the others on our list. It’s ideal for moving pigment to create texture rather than removing paint entirely. Use its three straight edges and pointed tip to manipulate heavy-bodied paints with ease. The wooden handle is long to increase leverage and encourage expressive stroke making, and you can remove it from the blade for thorough cleanup. Since the silicone is heat resistant, you can also use it with encaustics.
Stanley Burn Off Scraper
This is a basic but highly reliable paint scraper that features a flat, 3-inch blade attached to a smooth hardwood handle. The straight edge is thin and sharp so you can really get under dried paint bits, and it sits at a 20-degree angle from the handle for comfortable positioning. The blade offers an excellent combination of flexibility and sturdiness, able to withstand pressure and bending without breaking. The handle features two holes so you can hang it up when not in use.