Best Brushes for Staining Wood – Reviews and Buyer’s Guide

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It doesn’t make much sense to create a masterpiece made out of wood without ensuring that the wood is protected and looks great, does it?

You want to protect the wood and keep it looking its best, which is where the top brands come into play. I think Perdura Deck Brush and Wooster Overall Stain Brush are the best brushes for staining wood possible. But you can find sets that have every brush imaginable, and specific brushes are also available that help you with precision.

Because I know it is important for you to have options, I have included single brushes and multiple-brush products for your review.

Best Brushes for Staining Wood in April, 2021

Here is the list of the best brushes for staining wood you can find.

1. Perdura DECK BOSS – Best Brush for Staining Wood Deck

If you need a full patio or deck to be stained, you may think that it will take many hour to acomplish that. Don’t worry, with the Perdura DECK BOSS Fence and Floor Applicator, you have nothing to fear, period. Perdura is known around the globe for producing high-quality products that are both durable and easy to use.

The 7-inch deck brush helps you stain, paint and seal products quickly. Because it is so large, you can get done faster than with other brushes. You can load up your brush get in between the cracks, and much more with one stroke.

This is the one that professionals pick every time. It outlasts and outperforms many paint pads rollers, gadgets, and brushes but up to 10x. Plus, their fast-clean design ensures that the lifespan of the brush is extensive.

It has been rated #1 on the market, which means it is something that you should have in your toolkit at all times. You can also perform all the work while standing, which reduces back and knee pain.

The Perdura Stain Brush Fence Applicator doesn’t come with poles, so which ones do I need to purchase?

This is an excellent question. The DECK BOSS brand uses a universal thread, so that means your product is compatible with almost any paint pole on the market. In fact, you can use a household broom handle in a pinch. Of course, if your goal is to look professional, you should choose a lightweight pol that is about five or six feet in length.

  • Fast application
  • Save time
  • Perfect for smooth/rough surfaces
  • Professional finish
  • No wool/foam left behind
  • Lasts longer
  • Works with oil/water-based paints, sealers, stains
  • Pole extension not included
  • Not made in America
  • Heavier construction isn’t as suitable for handheld needs

2. Wooster Bravo Stainer – Great Multipurpose Option

The Wooster Brush is a stain brush that is four inches wide, though it also comes in 4.75-inch and 5.5-inch sizes.

It is one of the best brushes on the market because it gives you excellent and consistent results with any oil-based wood stain or sealer. This brush has a white China bristle and a squared construction, which ensures that it is wide enough to cover a large area. It also ensures that your stain goes on smoothly and evenly.

One of the things I really like about this product is the threaded hardwood handle, which has a bucket clip that can be removed and used with an extension pole.

In fact, it seems to be a highly popular stain brush for many people including me: I personally find this brush to be a great choice, it’s perfectly designed for staining.

Can you use the Wooster Brush for Wood Conditioner?

Many people have used this brush for applying wood conditioner without issue. The brush itself is highly sturdy, which means you can use it for thicker products and on rougher wood. However, the key is that you can use it to hold a lot of conditioner and it still releases it in a more controlled way.

Many people have also wondered if the Wooster brush can be used for acrylics, and many have found that it works well.

  • Soaks up plenty of stain and holds it
  • Removable handle
  • Bristles won’t shed while working
  • Also good for wood conditioner
  • Can seem a little worrisome because the handle unscrews

3. Perdura Rapid Stain 5-inch Deck Brush – Best Overall Brush

Like all Pedura products, this brush is easy to clean, easy to care for, and versatile. If you are looking for a brush that will last, this might be the right choice for you.

This staining brush is five-inches wide and about one-inch thick. It works well with both oil and water based stains. Its handle is wooden and curved to fit comfortably in your hand. Plus, the bush’s high-quality materials help you achieve high-quality results.

Professional Quality, Professional Results

Pedura focuses on providing professional quality products to everyday consumers. This holds true with their five-inch Rapid Stain brush. The bristles on this brush hold onto coating products well and prevent unwanted dripping. They are evenly spaced to produce an even coat of stain over your entire project. And, last but not least, the bristles are securely attached to the brush. They won’t fall out easily in the middle of your project.

Why I Love this Brush

I love that this brush is designed to work. It comes in attractive packaging and is easy to assemble. While the bristles are dense and hold onto product well, this brush is simple to clean and care for. Plus, Pedura brushes feature a 100% satisfaction guarantee.

Complaints about this brush are few and far between, but there are a few things to know before buying. The handle is removable so that you can use a painting pole in its place, but the brush is best enjoyed as a hand tool. Additionally, you may need to purchase a steel comb to thoroughly clean the bristles.

I highly recommend this brush because of its impressive quality, sturdy design, and ease of use and care.

  • Professional Quality
  • Durable Bristles
  • Easy to Care For
  • No Cleaning Comb Included
  • Removable Handle May Become Loose
  • Wood Handle May Stain Easily

4. Linzer Project Select – Best Budget Friendly Wide Brush

While this Linzer brush may not be as “professional” as the Pedura above, it’s a wonderful choice for anyone on a budget. Compared to other wide staining brushes, this one is surprisingly affordable, with many comparable features. If you’re looking for a simple but useful staining tool, this brush may be a great choice.

This multi-purpose brush is six-inches wide and about one inch thick. It is suitable for a wide variety of wood stains and can also be used for paints. The bristles are made of polyester and the handle is made of molded plastic. Additionally, the handle is threaded and removable in case you want to use an extension pole.

Reasonable Price and Reliable Results

While this brush will fit neatly into any project budget, it produces reliable results. The flexible bristles of this wide set brush make is an excellent choice for large projects like decks and fences. Plus, this brush is great for getting into crevices. Additionally, the plastic handle may resist residual staining better than other brushes with wooden handles.

Although flexible bristles are preferable for many projects, they can present challenges in some situations. For instance, this brush may not work well for overhead projects due to dripping. The flexible bristles may also fray quickly leading to messier results. Additionally, when compared to high-end brushes, the bristles in this brush fall out more easily.

This brush may not be top-of-the-line, but I still think it’s a good option. However, for larger projects, fast workers, or overhead work this brush might not be the best choice.

  • Affordable and Wide
  • Removable Plastic Handle
  • Flexible Bristles for Detailed Work
  • Bristles Fall Out Easily
  • Flexible Bristles May Cause Splatter
  • Less Durable than High-End Brushes

5. Wooster Brush Shortcut Angle Sash Paintbrush – Best Brush for Tight Spaces

Wooster is a trustworthy brand that has been making quality brushes since the 1800s, and this brush is no exception. While it is rather small, it’s unique handle makes it particularly well-suited for small and hard to reach places. If your wood projects feature a lot of detail or hard to reach crevices, this brush might be the best choice for you.

The bristles on this detailed brush are a nylon and gold polyester blend that is suitable for stains and paints of all types. Plus, it features a large and durable ferrule made of brass plated steel. The handle is about two inches long and flexible which means you will have an easier time maneuvering it in and out of tight spaces.

Easy to Use, Easy to Store

Thanks to the ergonomic handle and versatile bristles, this brush is easy to use for many different projects. Also, because the handle has a small hole on the end, this brush can easily be stored on a peg hook. While this brush may not be best for an entire project, it is great for making sure your details are on point.

I love that this brush fits nearly anywhere when staining, painting, or storing. However, it’s worth noting that the short handle may not work well for people with large hands. Also, because of the handle’s flexibility, it can take some time to get used to this brush.

All in all, this brush is a favorite of ours for finishing up projects and any necessary touch-ups.

  • Flexible and Manuverable
  • Great for Details
  • Easy to Clean and Store
  • Not a Good Fit for Large Hands
  • Steep Learning Curve
  • Bristles May Come Out Easily

6. Perdura Duet Sash Trim Paint Brush Twin Pack – Best Detailing Duo

As I’ve already mentioned, you can’t go wrong with a Pedura brush. These two brushes are part of Pedura’s Pro Series and specifically designed for trim and detailed work. Like other Pedura brushes, these are made with high-quality materials and a beautiful design.

The More the Merrier

If you can’t decide between a flat brush and an angled brush, this set might be a good option for you. Each brush in the set is durable, reliable, and easy to care for. The wooden handles are curved to fit nicely in any hand. And last but not least, the bristles are firmly attached and suitable for any type of stain.

While these small brushes are excellent for detailed work, the stiff wooden handles may prevent users from getting into tight spaces. Still, the benefits of these brushes far outweigh this subtle flaw. Plus, they are backed by an impressive satisfaction guarantee.

I recommend these brushes for small staining projects and detailing large projects.

  • Professional Quality Brushes
  • Attractive, Protective Packaging
  • Easy to Use, Clean, and Care For
  • Wooden Handle May Stain
  • Only Come as a Set
  • Handles Are Not Flexible

7. Presa Premium Paint Brush Set – Decent Paint Brushes for Staining Wood

If you’re looking to increase your productivity and want something that is thoughtfully constructed, the Presa premium paint brush is the right one for you.

You get the ability to hold up to 30 percent more paint, which means you can get done with your work faster. You also get a smooth, even release of the paint or stain because the premium filaments are used and give more precision.

The Presa premium paint brush is also heavy-duty, which means it can handle abrasive surfaces and more. The filaments are easy to clean and durable, which means you won’t be replacing it as often and can reuse the brushes as often as necessary.

  • Five brushes/sizes available
  • Inexpensive for how many brushes you receive
  • Beautiful, light-wood grain color that looks professional
  • Bristles can separate when loaded with paint
  • Can be hard to determine appropriate brush size

8. Loew-Cornell – Top Form Brushes for Staining

While many people worry about having a suitable brush for any task, you can purchase the Loew-Cornell set that includes 20 different brushes.

They are all the same size (2 inches) and have a short wood handle. They are perfect for acrylic use and for craft painting, but they can also be used to stain baseboards, trims, and much more.

  • Disposable
  • Inexpensive
  • Small handle and brush, perfect for tight spaces
  • Foam/sponge soaks up plenty of varnish
  • Don’t last long and shouldn’t be used more than once or twice
  • Let sit for a few days before use
  • A gentle hand works great for these

Buyer’s Guide

Now that you know you need to stain the wood, it is essential that you choose the right brush to help you. We have looked into the four top brushes available for staining wood that are on the market for you to buy.

If you’re wondering why the list was made, it’s because the market is full of brushes and products that make it hard for people to determine what is going to work best for their needs.

Many companies might choose inexpensive materials to give an inexpensive brush, but these products may not be suitable for your needs. Instead, it is better to learn as much as you can about them before you determine which one is good for you.

The technologies behind staining brushes haven’t changed much in the last few decades. However, there are some innovations now as there have been in the past. We’ve seen that with the Perdura Stain Brush Fence Applicator and other products. Of course, some of them haven’t changed (and probably should), such as the 20-pack of foam brushes.

Regardless of your needs and skill level, any of these brushes listed here can be helpful to you in the right situation. Learning a bit more about them can ensure that you make the right choice.


Now that you have learned more about each of these four products, you are better prepared to choose one that fits your needs. If you have a large job, the fence applicator brush may be more suitable, but if you have a small job (such as trims around the home), you may do well with the foam brushes (20-pack). Either way, you know more about them and what others like about them and can make an informed decision.

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34 thoughts on “Best Brushes for Staining Wood – Reviews and Buyer’s Guide

  1. Do staining brushes usually last a long time? Or are they more of a one time use thing. I figured you could wash them out like a paintbrush and reuse them but I wasn’t too sure.

    1. Hi, Tyler. Foam brushes are disposable. You can use them twice, but that’s a bad idea because stain seals pores in the foam as it dries. What about bristle brushes, they are reusable. You just have to use chemical remover after each staining. Dispose bristle brush when bristles lose their working conditions.

  2. I’ve got 1/2 quart of the General Finishes Gel Stain I used on pine 3 months ago. Back then I applied it using a common paint bristle brush. Now I’m going to use this stain again for another DIY project. I think this time I could get much better results by using a different kind of brush. What can you suggest?

    1. Hi, Eric.

      Actually, the best applicator for gel stains is a foam brush, just try yourself. I think it will be a totally different experience (for the better). But it isn’t like you have to use only foam brushes, period. It’s just more suitable for gel stains. For other fluid options (water-based stains most of the time and sometimes oil-based) bristle brushes are better option.

  3. I seem to always have problems with the foam brushes that I buy for my little staining projects. I feel like they just soak up all of the stains and waste it. Am I just doing it wrong?

    1. Hi, Yasmin. Foam brushes never cause such a problem for me. I think it’s because of consistency of the stain you used. Gel stain have to be kind of sticky, if it’s too watery the foam brush soaks too much of it.

  4. Wow, I had no idea that they made such a huge staining brush! This is going to make staining my deck so much easier. Do you feel like it still stains evenly even though the size is considerably larger? I’m worried it might not do as good of a job as a smaller brush.

    1. Nice to see you here, Emily. You don’t have to worry, I’ve used this brush and I can say that it does its best every time. Water-based stains are preferred for staining deck since water-based formula does leveling by itself. So there is no concern about thickness of stain. You will spend much more time trying to stain a deck using small brush, forget about it.

  5. I have quite possibly the worst back in the world but I am determined to get the new furniture I built stained myself. I mean I built the dang things so I have to finish the job. I am definitely going to be putting the Purdera Deck Boss to the test this month. Hope it does everything it promises too.

  6. A buddy of mine had me help him stain his deck a while back and he got us both the Deck Boss. Man did those work. The best brush I’ve ever used. Made the job so much easier.

    1. Hey Jeremy, glad to hear you enjoyed using the Deck Boss, It a super useful product, and therefore we ranked it first on our list.

  7. I’ve heard that they’ve had some manufacturing products with the Deck Boss and that the part that connects to a pole doesn’t actually connect. Do you know about this problem?

    1. Hi, Richard. I haven’t had such a problem, I used my own poly which just fitted great. Deck Boss doesn’t include pole, you have to get it somewhere else. But you can use any other poly you have. If it’s made of wood you can easily adjust it’s size to fit the brush connector.

  8. How can they sell a brush head that needs to be connected to a pole, but does not sell the pole? I don’t get companies some times.

    1. It isn’t the best option if you:

      1. Staining a large deck area. It will take a lot of time to do that, better consider deck Boss Deck.
      2. Staining hard-to-reach area. Get tiny bristle brushes in this case
      3. Applying gel stain. Foam brushes are the best here.

  9. Are you sure the Wooster brush can be used for conditioner? I’ve seen other skeptical reviews regarding that aspect of it.

    1. Hi, Justin. I’ve used this brush while staining, sealing, conditioning and more, so far I’ve met no problems. Choose another option if you aren’t sure.

  10. How worrisome would you say the handle can be. Does it ever start to get lose after continued use? I just don’t want to waste my money on something I can’t get a lot of use out of.

    1. The handle started unscrew after a year of active using. I probably get weak handle sample but It think it might have last for much longer. Despite of this fact, it’s a great brush.

  11. Would you say that they Wooster brush soaks up the stain and holds it but doesn’t release it onto the wood? I’ve had problems with that in the past with other brushes not actually releasing the stain even though it has soaked up a ton.

    1. Hi, Jeff. I’ve experienced the same problem using other brushes in the past. Wooster brush seems to have no problems like that.

  12. How does the handle come off of the Wooster brush? Does it twist off completely and only leave like the top where the bristles are or do the end with the hole only come off?

    1. I’ve been using Wooster for entire year. The handle became loose a little bit. I’ve seen no people reporting the same problem so I think I just get unlucky one.

  13. Do the Presa brushes actually come as a set or do you have to buy them individually? Is it a lot more expensive to buy a brush set in relation to like the Wooster brush alone?

    1. Nice to see you, Jim. Presa goes as a set, no need to buy them separately. You can easily stain hard-to-reach areas using Presa brushes which you can’t do using Wooster. So buy what you think is more appropriate for you.

  14. How exactly do all the different brush sizes of the Presa help you in staining? Is it simply to fit into different areas and nooks? Or are they for specific kinds of wood or stain specifically?

    1. Hi, Kyle. Yes, different sizes help you stain different sized areas. It’s very convenient when staining furniture or little wooden pieces.

  15. How could anyone justify using the Loew-Cornell brushes for staining? You are actively wasting resources and helping to fill landfills by buying one use products like this. Just buy a nice brush that will last you years and cut down on the one-use products please!

    1. Hi, Julia. I understand your concern, it bother me too. Form brushes are great for gel stains and I’m afraid that bristle brushes can’t fully replace foam brushes because they’re designed mostly for water-based stains. Trying apply gel stain using bristle brush may be a total mess.

  16. I’m looking for a good way to get stain in the gap between my deck boards (~ 1/4″ gap). How well does the Deck Boss (or any other brush, for that matter) work for this?

    1. Hi, Chris.

      Deck Boss does a great job covering the ‘horizontal’ surface of your decks but it’s hard for this brush to reach gaps. Actually, I don’t know how deep those gaps are. Anyway, I think you should use something more flexible like Wooster Shortcut, Perdura Sash Trim, etc.

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