Choosing an environmentally friendly paint with no or low VOCs (volatile organic compounds) is a step in the right direction. Not only is traditional paint harmful to your health, the airborne chemicals in paint can pollute beyond one’s home. Another important consideration is the furniture that is purchased. Some furniture is produced in distant countries and requires much fuel to be shipped to American consumers. Other furniture is made from natural rain forests and buying this furniture can actually support the destruction of these forests. Try buying furniture second hand. Not only will you be keeping older furniture out of landfills and keeping your dollars from going toward shipping resources and destruction, but you will also have to ability to fix up and personalize a piece of furniture.
A word on low and zero VOC paints: Be careful to research whether the colorant used in the paint is also low/zero VOC. Many companies offer a product that qualifies as low or zero VOC, but then the VOC level jumps when the paint is tinted.
Why are VOC’s so bad in paints. Do varnishes have VOC’s as well.
VOC’s represent a host of different chemicals, which can be harmful to the environment as well as human health. Methane and Formaldehyde are two of the major culprits. In general, a varnish will have a pretty high VOC content. It should say on the label.
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