Purdy Paint Brushes (Like the XL Cub) Make Cutting in Easy

Looking for quality painting tools that can be used with paint or stain? Check out Purdy paint brushes for your easiest paint job yet.

Our editors and experts handpick every product we feature. We may earn a commission from your purchases.

For some of us, Purdy paint brushes are sacred. I treat mine with the utmost reverence, meticulously cleaning them so they will last a long time. With that in mind, it’s only natural for me to get excited about a new brush in the Purdy line.

To some, painting may seem like the easiest thing in the world. But painting well requires more than just rolling some paint on a wall.

Before painting, start by moving furniture and laying down drop cloths. Then, you’ll need to mask off trim, casings and millwork for a thorough paint job. Next, remove the outlet and light switch covers, and be sure to fill and sand any holes or gouges with spackle. Now, here comes the fun part: we need to cut in.

Of the entire painting process, cutting in is my least favorite. You must be precise and thorough, all the while contorting your body on the floor or up on a ladder. 

With a long overdue repaint of my upstairs bathroom looming, I was excited to try the Purdy XL Cub brush.

What is the Purdy XL Cub?

The Purdy XL Cub brush is a compact edging and cut-in brush, part of Purdy’s versatile, all-around line of brushes. The XL Cub has angled, two-inch wide nylon and polyester brush hairs, recommended for all paints and stains.

At slightly more than eight inches, the compressed size of this brush is the real draw. The stubby, ergonomic handle and the overall slender design feels nimble and natural—a perfect feeling to start a weekend of painting.

Shop Now

Product Features

The most distinctive feature of this Purdy brush is the short handle, which makes it easier to use in tight spaces. It’s also lightweight to reduce fatigue. We love the medium-stiff bristles on the Purdy XL Cub because it gives you more control. The angular cut is ideal for cutting in and painting trim.

How I Tested it

My bathroom’s plaster walls were in dire need of a fresh coat of paint. I’d put it off because of the daunting amount of cutting in and painting in tight spaces required. It would take some work to edge an entire perimeter of subway tiles, a floor-to-ceiling tile shower, an arch-shaped built-in medicine cabinet, and electrical fixtures and outlets. Phew, I was tired just thinking about it.

I figured this would be the perfect test for the Purdy XL Cub. But I also wanted to try the XL Cub on smooth, non-plaster walls, so I tackled a sheet-rocked bedroom in our finished basement. After completing all the necessary prep work, I got ready for my most hated task—cutting in.

Performance Review

Fh22d Approved Purdy brushes 04 01 002TMB Studio

The Purdy XL Cub brush makes painting simple, thanks to its compact design and small ergonomic shape.

The plush, semi-stiff, nylon and polyester bristles were easy to control and held plenty of paint for the finicky cut-in process. The short handle and two-inch angled brush made painting a breeze in tight spaces, like behind the door or around light fixtures.

Paint brushes often feel cumbersome if the brush is too broad or the handle is too long. Not the Purdy XL Cub. Not once did my hand cramp or feel fatigued while painting multiple rooms. Its compressed design and angled brush hairs made this the most comfortable paint brush I can ever remember using.


  • Small handle
  • Easy to use
  • Ergonomic
  • Ideal for tight spaces
  • Angled for sharp lines
  • Holds paint well
  • Easy to clean
  • Works with paint or stain


  • Loses bristles according to recent reviews


What Purdy brush is the most versatile?

The Purdy XL series is designed to be used with both paint and stain. However, we think the XL Cub is the ideal choice, especially for cutting in.

What type of brush gives the smoothest finish?

A soft bristle brush provides the smoothest finish, whereas a stiff brush creates crisper lines.

How do I choose the right paint brush?

Matching the bristle type to your finish is a starting point. If you need a little help, Family Handyman offers in-depth pointers on choosing a paint brush.

For most projects around the house, Purdy paint brushes are solid choices because they work with both paint and stain. For trim and detail work, an angled brush is your best option.

What Other Reviewers Had to Say

Amazon customer TechVic reviewed his Purdy paint brush, “Very well made brush. Great for brush mark free, clear finishes. Short handle makes it very easy to control. Brush is a good balance between stiff and soft hair.”

The busy Mom of Two says, “A little cashy? Yes, but worth every penny. The only brush I will use for cutting in and trimming. The short handle makes it comfortable in your hand and the quality of the bristles makes it possible to trim without taping. The angled edge is a must have. Totally worth every penny!”

Amazon shopper, Koppinjo claims it’s the best paint brush they’ve ever used. “I have used this paint brush on all the trim in 2 different houses and I have tried similar brushes from other brands. NONE of them come close to giving me the kind of control and finish that the Purdy Brush does. Don’t waste time with anything else! If you’re doing trim or cutting any edges, go with the PURDY!!!!!”

Product Comparisons

There are a wide array of Purdy paint brushes. Some are best suited for latex paint, while others work best for stain or epoxy. Brushes like the Chinex Elite Cub are designed for textured surfaces such as stucco, rough-sawn wood or brick. Purdy offers four handle styles as well as a variety of widths and bristle styles. 

Final Verdict

Paint brushes are straightforward tools. The Purdy XL Cub’s quality materials, comfortable ergonomic shape and superb craftsmanship make it a desirable addition to your painting tool kit. It’s recommended for all paint and stains. If properly stored and cleaned, a Purdy brush will be useful for years to come.

Where To Buy

Purdy Paint Brush via merchant

Purdy paint brushes have a long history of making quality paint brushes and loyal customers.  Try one today, and you’re sure to become a fan too.

The Purdy XL Cub is available at Lowe’s, Walmart, Ace Hardware, and at Amazon.com

Shop Now

Ethan O'Donnell
An experienced woodworker, Ethan O'Donnell has built furniture, cabinetry and artistic elements for Fortune 500 companies as well as the National Park Service. He's also a certified rigger, forklift and telehandler operator with OSHA and UCOR safety certifications. When he's not renovating his rustic cabin in Minnesota's Northwoods, Ethan rides and repairs his fleet of bicycles and motorcycles.
Sheri Kaz
As Associate Shopping Editor, Sheri helps Family Handyman readers find well-designed products to enjoy their time spent at home. Her expertise lies in interior design and gardening. When she’s not searching for the next inspired home or garden solution, she enjoys dancing, painting and the great outdoors.