Masking tape, also known as painter's tape, is a type of pressure - sensitive tape (PSA) made of a thin and easy-to-tear paper, and an easily released pressure - sensitive tape. It is available in a variety of widths. It is used mainly in painting , to mask off areas that should not be painted. The adhesive is the key element to its usefulness, as it allows the tape to be easily removed without leaving residue or damaging the surface to which it is applied.
Pressure sensitive adhesive tapes usually require a light pressure to ensure bonding with a substrate. This low pressure requirement allows easy application to surfaces by simply using fingers or hands to apply pressure. The pressure applied to the tape allows the tape to have better contact with the surface and allows the physical forces between the two to build up. Usually, increased application pressure increases the bond of the adhesive to the substrate. PSA tape laboratory testing is often conducted with a 2 kg roller to increase test uniformity. PSAs are able to maintain their tackiness at room temperature and do not require the use of additives such as water, solvents, or heat activation to exert strong adhesive forces on surfaces. Due to this PSAs are capable of being applied to a variety of surfaces such as paper, plastics, wood, cement, and metal. The adhesives have a cohesive holding and are also elastic allowing PSAs to be manipulated by hand and also be removed from a surface without leaving behind any residue.
Masking tape is also used in long strips on larger glass panes in situations where the glass might be shattered, harming those in the vicinity.
Masking tape is also used in long strips to hang artwork temporarily.