Is Your Paint Selection Doing Your Health More Harm Than Good?

Tips on Making Healthier Paint Choices

A crucial step in any interior design project includes paint selection. But did you know that most paints have nasty chemicals, including carcinogens, reproductive toxins, hazardous air pollutants, preservatives that emit formaldehyde, heavy metals, alkylphenol ethoxylates, and a host of other harmful chemicals? It is very important to do your research before choosing your paint.⁠

The IAQ (Indoor air quality) of a building refers to how clean the air in that building is. As buildings become more airtight and energy efficient, actively managing indoor air quality becomes more important. Some air pollutants, like carbon monoxide, are highly dangerous. Others, like volatile organic compounds, can cause short-term health problems as well as chronic ones. So what are the best ways to ensure good IAQ? 

The following tips are at the top of the list:

  • Moisture management
  • Adequate ventilation
  • Selection of low-VOC products

In this blog post, we will be discussing ingredients in some paints that are considered hazardous to our health and how to steer clear of them. We will also suggest ‘healthier’ paint products that we recommend you use in your next project. 

What to Avoid:

  • Preservatives such as MI (methylisothiazolinone) 
  • MCI (methylchloroisothiazolinone)
  • Xylene
  • Ethyl acetate
  • Methylene chloride
  • Glycol
  • Formaldehyde
  • Benzene
  • Phenol
  • Quaternary ammonium compounds
  • Carbamates
  • And many more

Opting for Zero-VOC paints is ideal as even low-emitting materials will accumulate over time. VOCs are known to off-gas over time so the best solution is to select zero VOC paints. We recommend checking out Benjamin Moore’s Zero VOC Product Catalog.

There are also online sources such as Origin and Green Seal’s website which provide lists of eco-friendly and VOC-free paints and coatings that are acceptable to use in your home or interior space.⁠ For more information contact us at [email protected]

⁠Happy Painting! 🙂

Article Written By: Jotveer Pakkar 
Article References:
Why Paint Ingredient Disclosure is Vital | Avoid Toxic Paints, Eco Paints
VOCs: Why They’re Still Here and What You Can Do About It, Building Green
Product Catalog, Benjamin Moore
Green Seal Certified Directory, Green Seal 
Paint Products, Origin

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