Non-toxic paint has become increasingly more important to the public as information about how dangerous the emissions are to our health has come out. In response to the alarm about toxic paints, companies have developed Natural, Low, and Zero VOC paints for environmentally friendly painting.
VOCs are volatile organic compounds. They, among other chemicals, are what make paint toxic. VOCs can leech out of paint for years. To avoid them, many paints have now been made from natural ingredients that don’t contain VOCs and are entirely non-toxic. Take a look at our picks:
For 35 years, Ecos Paints have been perfecting their “recipe” to help their customers create a healthier environment. Their high-quality paint is non-toxic, has Zero VOCs, and no traditional paint odor. Each product is free from herbicides, pesticides, and fungicides.
They help you find the right color with their color-matching form. Once you find the perfect shade, you will be buying the best organic paints that are designed for people who suffer from chemical sensitivities.
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The Real Milk Paint is made from 100% organic materials and thus is environmentally friendly, has no VOCs, and is non-toxic. It’s sold as a powder that you’ll have to mix with water. You can then mix it with pigment powders to create just about any color you want.
The Real Milk Paint Company also offers paint remover, crackle, waxes, and tung oil to finish off your wooden projects. They also sell Citrus Solvent as a natural paint thinner. They offer you so many toxin-free alternatives to create beautiful spaces.
Benjamin Moore website offers a helpful paint calculator which allows you to enter the dimensions of the room and calculate how much paint you’ll need, keeping in mind that you’ll use two coats and won’t be painting the ceiling.
They make their own resins and proprietary Gennex colorants. Benjamin Moore Natura Paint paint has been certified to be asthma and allergy-friendly. They’ve also earned Silver-level certification from the Cradle to Cradle Product Innovation Institute.
Clare premium interior paints are Zero VOC and are GREENGUARD Gold certified. You can find the perfect color for your space by using their Clare Color Genius two-minute quiz. Clare paint offers an alternative to the old-fashioned, endless sample spots.
They ship (for free!) their Perfect Color Swatch to you, which lets you sample in an instant by just peeling and sticking it to your wall. Once you find the right color for you, you will buy high-quality, self-priming paint that applies an even finish that resists dirt, grime, and mildew.
Anna Sova Food Paint smells like a milkshake! This is their claim, and they prove it with their ingredient list for their paint. The patented eco-friendly paint is made with up to 96% of food-grade ingredients including milk casein, bamboo cellulose, food emulsifiers, fungicide, bactericide, mildew retardant, and preservatives.
This environmentally-friendly paint applies and protects like standard interior wall paint. Anna Sova uses cutting-edge Degussa pigments that contain no VOCs, are APE-free, and water-based. Using their nontoxic water-based paint in your home can help reduce your household VOCs.
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BioShield Healthy Living Paints are beautifully versatile and easy to apply. They can cover most surfaces, from plaster to concrete, without VOCs or solvents. The paint is a breathable, economical, and washable paint with a high-hiding capacity making it good for covering up existing paint.
BioShield also offers a unique interior clay paint that is made with naturally occurring earthborn clays and pigments. This non-toxic house paint is self-priming and spatter resistant.
Everest is a line of ultra-premium, Zero VOC, and low-odor acrylic paints. It’s self-priming and applies easily. It’s ideal for use on high-end residential and commercial projects. Their paint features exceptional hide, adhesion, and sheen uniformity. It has superior scrub resistance and washability.
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Coverdale EcoLogic paint is formulated with latex resin and ceramic microsphere technologies. It’s a 100% acrylic latex waterborne finish that claims to have fantastic resistance to stains, burnishing and abrasions when compared to other flat latexes.
It contains a fungicide, making it mildew resistant and suitable for kitchens and bathrooms. It will leave a gloss-free finish that applies smoothly and meets the VOC standards in the USA.
Harmony is an interior acrylic latex paint that is formulated to reduce common odors from cooking, pets, and smoke to help keep rooms smelling fresh. It is a Zero-VOC formula that is GREENGUARD certified for low chemical emissions. This eco paint has also been GREENGUARD certified for children and in schools.
The paint contains ingredients that inhibit the growth of mold and mildew on the surface. In addition, it contains Formaldehyde Reducing Technology that helps reduce certain levels of VOCs from various places in the home.
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Behr Premium Plus Paint has excellent coverage and stain resistance. It’s scrub resistant, so you can have a beautiful color and finish for years to come.
They have a “Paint your Place” option to be able to upload a photo of the room you want to paint and virtually test the colors. Behr offers a huge selection of both indoor and outdoor paints. They have GREENGUARD Gold certification, so rest assured, you will get top-quality non-toxic paints.
I mentioned briefly in the beginning what a VOC is, but why are they in paint at all? There are a couple of reasons. In particular, they can help prevent the growth of mold and mildew and help the paint dry quicker. But, as it turns out, they’re not absolutely necessary. Many low-VOC and non-VOC paints are proving that. The difference between the two is really just as simple as it sounds. The amount of VOC content concentrated in the paint.
Every board and committee may have differing opinions on the lowest possible content to classify a paint as low-VOC or no-VOC. But, to be considered no-VOC qualified, you have to have traces below a certain number that is determined by the Federal Trade Commission. Even no-VOC paints will still likely contain traces, but less than is considered harmful.
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When looking got eco-friendly, nontoxic paints, make sure they’ve got proper certifications awarded to high-quality paints that meet strict standards regarding the use of chemicals:
Greenguard GOLD certification is given to paints that meet stringent criteria regarding the amount of toxic chemicals that they emit. This certification is given to paints that can be safely used in places such as kindergartens and schools and by people suffering from chemical sensitivities.
Declare Label provides information about where the paint was made, what are its ingredients and its biodegradability. It will help you to check if the paint meets the California Department of Public Health (CDPH) Standard Method v1.1-2010 (or international equivalent) for interior building products that may release VOCs.
Green Wise certified paints have less than 5 grams of VOCs per liter, even after being tinted with pigments.
Read More: Are Oil-Based Paints Toxic?
Read More: How to create a chemical-free home?
If you want to paint your walls with non-toxic paints, there’s a wide array of products you can choose from. Using non-toxic paints will help you dramatically reduce the amount of toxic chemicals in the air and improve air quality at home. Better air quality equals better well-being and health for you and your family so it’s definitely an investment that will pay off in the long term.
My name is Kamila, and I'm passionate about researching non-toxic, organic products for the home. I believe it's so important to create a safe and healthy environment for our families, and I enjoy helping others do the same.