Positive effects of eco-friendly paints and how conventional paint affects indoor air quality
There are many alternatives today when it comes to conventional products, including for house paints that some manufacturers create without the use of additives and distillates.
Green paints or ecological paints are safe for the environment and for your family, making them an ideal choice at any time, but especially when you want to keep the children or a newborn baby safe.
Conventional paints contain what is called volatile organic compounds or VOCs, chemicals essentially that the paint can emit for months after you’ve painted a room.
You have most likely heard of formaldehyde that is not only used in building materials, but also in the manufacturing of cosmetics and household products at a very large scale.
Formaldehyde has been linked to various health problems, and some producers have removed it from their products entirely.
Because of the health concerns, many paint manufacturers have begun developing VOC-free paints for people who are looking to go green. This is still a work in progress, as manufacturers seek to improve their products all the time to provide customers with paint as long lasting and efficient as conventional products.
Types of eco-friendly paints available on the market today
- Milk paint – milk paint is made from milk protein and can include lime. It usually contains pigments for color and is often formulated as powder to be mixed with water, or is sold in liquid form. Milk paint is non-toxic and it’s best put to use on bare wood walls and plaster walls, although you can use it on a variety of surfaces with proper preparation.
Ideally, you would use milk paint on wood and plaster walls that have not been previously painted. This type of paint provides a beautiful old world effect, and it’s important to remember that it may not provide a 100% flawless finish, so keep that in mind if planning to use milk paint.
- Latex paint – safer for the environment than oil-based paint, latex paints may contain VOCs, however in much lower amounts. They dry much faster, are non-flammable and easy to clean, but they can show imperfections and may fade when used on exterior walls.
Manufacturers have been able to create latex paints that are more efficient and contain none to very few toxic ingredients.
- Low VOC paints – are paints with fewer harmful ingredients, but still containing substances like ammonia, biocides, and acetone. The main issue with low VOC paint is that adding conventional color pigments to it can result in an increase of the VOC level of the paint.
Sometimes the colorants for paint can contain higher amounts of VOCs, leading to a paint as toxic as conventional paint. When choosing low VOC paints, make sure you combine with low VOC color pigment and low VOC base tint.
For making the best paint decision, always research before purchasing a product and find transparent companies that you can trust.