'If you've not tried this painting hack yet, thank me later' – the game-changing buy that will only cost you £3

Need to paint plinths and skirting boards? No problem

Green painted kitchen cabinets with brass handles and displayed houseplants
(Image credit: Future PLC/Douglas Gibb)

You know at Ideal Home we love a good hack, especially if it involves making DIY home improvements even easier and stress-free – and this acetate sheet paint hack was too good not to share.

If you've ever been on the task of learning how to paint skirting boards, then you'll know that (albeit a simpler feat than other more difficult paint ideas) avoiding the floor can sometimes be a challenging task.

Green painted kitchen cabinets with brass handles and displayed houseplants

(Image credit: Future PLC/Bee Holmes)

'If you’re a new DIY'er home improvement jobs like painting skirting boards and plinths can seem daunting, especially with the risk of staining the floor below,' starts Nick Ee, product and training manager at home improvement specialists, Black + Decker.

'To avoid this happening most people would resort to using old curtains or unused material to lay down and catch any paint, but this method isn't always foolproof.' 

Therefore, this paint hack might just be the trick to keep in your back pocket. 

Green/blue cupboards, gold leaf island unit, large patterned tiles above the sink. Wooden dining table, with wooden slatted wall behind. Utility behind dining table and snug area behind kitchen

(Image credit: Future PLC/Rachael Smith)

Acetate sheet painting hack

Interiors and DIY enthusiast, Georgina Raine (@georginaraineinteriors), took to Instagram to share the ultimate paint hack. The video went viral, gaining over 18.5 million views and over a million likes on the social media platform.

In the caption Georgina writes, 'If you've not tried this painting hack for plinths & skirting boards yet, thank me later.'

The hack demonstrates Georgina fitting an acetate sheet where the bottom of her cabinets meet the floor to create a shield as she paints the plinths of her kitchen cabinets (in the most gorgeous green colour, might we add).

While we're aware of the existence of decorator's tape, paint shields, and even just a trusty old piece of paper to help us paint edges, plinths, and skirting boards, the fact that the sheet of acetate is clear so you can see exactly where your paint isn't going really just does it for us – and millions of people on social media seem to agree with us as well.

Georgina ends the video by saying that the hack helps you 'get a perfect finish every time.'

The beauty of the hack also lies in its price, as acetate sheets are affordable and easily accessible. You can buy a pack of acetate sheets for as little as £3 on Amazon, which may also be helpful if you tend to crack on with multiple painting DIY projects to flesh out the many skirting board colour ideas you have brewing in the background.

Blue painted kitchen cabinets and dark handles, decorated kitchen worktop

(Image credit: Future PLC/Douglas Gibb)

Commenting on the efficacy of this paint hack, Emma Bestley, co-founder and creative director at YesColours says, 'An acetate sheet is a handy solution for DIYers as it provides a protective barrier that is easy to work with.'

'Its smooth and non-absorbent material prevents any paint from seeping onto the floor, while also providing a surface that is easy to glide on for getting right to the bottom of those skirting boards.'

Not to mention, it can be particularly helpful if you're preparing yourself with the task of painting skirting boards with carpet.

Green painted kitchen cabinets with gold brass handles, wooden worktop, and fridge

(Image credit: Future PLC/Katie Jane Watson)

Sarah Lloyd, paint and interiors specialist at Valspar Paint adds, 'Unlike decorators tape, using an acetate sheet can be much more time efficient as you don't have to spend time sticking the tape down and can just quickly slide the acetate sheet underneath the skirting boards as you paint.'

However, she does warn, 'If the acetate sheet struggles to fit comfortably underneath the skirting boards, it's important that you don't force it, as it could cause damage to the end result.

'If this is the case, then it's better to use decorator's tape instead.'

Jullia Joson
Junior Writer

Jullia Joson is Ideal Home’s Junior Writer. She’s always loved all things homes and interiors, graduating with a bachelor's degree in Architectural Studies from the University of Nottingham in 2022. Previously, she was an Intern Editor for ArchDaily. Now focused on news stories, Jullia can be found down the TikTok and Pinterest rabbit hole scrolling through any new and upcoming trends, hacks, and home inspiration.