- They do not contain chlorinated hydrocarbons or other toxic non-degradable substances.
- They don’t release hazardous artificial solvents or formaldehyde
- They do not release harmful gases after drying.
- Direct contact with organisms is harmless.
- They have a positive effect on the atmospheric conditions of the area.
- They maintain the ideal natural moisture balance in your home.
- They are manufactured only from renewable raw materials.
- They don’t pollute the environment both during their production and their use.
- Their residues during the production and use can be composted and used as natural fertilisers.
- They contain ingredients that are familiar to humans since ancient times.
NATURAL PAINTS VS THE BIG BRANDS
So your new house is almost ready and you have to decide which paints you will use to decorate it. Or you are thinking of renovating your old apartment. Which products are you going to use: conventional or natural paints?
Ancient man used natural raw materials to paint. People of the Stone Age painted the walls of caves in earthy colours. During the Greco-Roman era, India was a primary supplier of indigo dye, derived from the plant Indigofera tinctoria, to Europe. Today’s natural colours, after intensive research and development, are products of great technical value and are considered future products.
WHY SHOULD I CARE?
The choice of paint you will use is very important if you want to reduce exposure to hazardous chemical agents. Nowadays, constructing a new house or even making a few changes has a severe cost, but using natural paints to decorate it should be a non – negotiable fact. Big brand paints can often leach Formaldehyde into your house for YEARS after painting. Not cool!
There are about 10,000 chemical compounds that can be used in wall and furniture paints. Volatile organic compounds (VOC) are the most common. Evaporation of solvents used in surface coatings such as paints, lacquers, inks etc is an important source of VOC known for causing serious health problems. These organic compounds are accused of causing toxic effects in humans; benzene and 1,3 -butadiene may cause leukemia, formaldehyde might cause lung cancer, Polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), polychlorinated tetraphenyls (PCTs), dioxins can cause cancer. They can also lead to environmental pollution.
THE 3 COMPONENTS OF PAINT
- PIGMENT: gives the paint its colour
- BINDERS: also known as the medium, help the pigment stick to the applied surface.
- SOLVENTS: sometimes called carrier or thinner, keep the paint in liquid form, making it easier to apply.
Of these three components, the solvents contribute the most to the paint’s level of VOCs. That’s because the solvent is designed to evaporate quickly, leaving only the pigment and its binder behind on your walls. Paints with a greater percentage of solids typically leave more pigment behind, thus requiring fewer applications. Solvents tend to be either oil-based (high VOC content) or water-based (low or no VOC content). Latex paint, which has lower VOC levels and is generally more environmentally friendly than oil-based paints, uses water-based solvents.
WHAT DO CONVENTIONAL PAINTS CONTAIN?
Old conventional paints may also contain hazardous agents such as cadmium, cobalt, phthalates, which can cause respiratory problems, side effects in the central nervous system and damage to the liver or kidneys. So it is far better to pay some extra money to buy certified ecological paint now, instead of having to pay doctors later.
WHY SHOULD I SWITCH TO NATURAL PAINTS?
Natural paints exploit the wide range of properties of natural materials. They are exclusively produced from natural raw materials derived from trees, plants, animal derivatives and harmless mineral materials without “harsh” chemical intervention. They also are models of sustainable use. Natural paints are easy to apply, have high efficiency- meaning they have great coverage, creating high-quality surfaces, and drastically help in hygiene.
However, it is advisable to use only certified products which guarantee high technical standards with long lasting and great looking results. So prefer and demand solvent-free paints for your house. They are better for your health, safer for the environment and have no drawbacks when compared to the old-type paints.