How do eco-friendly paints differ from conventional paints?
Eco paints differ from conventional paints for a number of reasons; They are better for us & the environment, better to look at, and better for buildings. Being VOC free meaning no nasty emissions & no smells. They are especially beneficial for many asthma & allergy sufferers. With no oils or acrylics added, means that eco paints are highly breathable. Sealing surfaces with acrylic or oil based paints can cause damp problems in the future. Our buildings need to breathe just like people. Often the consistency is a little thicker than conventional ‘plastic paints’ which allows better coverage. Some Eco paints carry the EU Ecolabel meaning they meet a set of strict environmental and performance standards.
What should you bear in mind when applying eco-paints?
There is no real difference when applying eco paint as normal brushes and rollers can be used. Simply prepare your surfaces as you would with conventional paints. Drying time is often quicker than normal paints. Clean up is where these paints excel due to the water-based nature, clean up is quick and easy & no nasty chemicals are needed. Many Eco paints are also suitable for children’s bedrooms & furniture due to the low VOC levels. Check the coverage per m2 before buying, as many eco paints are far superior & 90% of jobs can be done with one coat meaning half the amount of paint. We painted our bare plywood shop walls in a dark charcoal and 1 coat achieved full coverage. Natural colour pigments give a richer depth of colour and will change depending on their surroundings. I.E If you have lots of green reflecting in from outside this often results in a greener tone on your finished surface, So test your chosen colour in the room before committing to the project.
Why is it important for you to use eco-paints in your interior design?
With everyone becoming more aware of our impact on the planet, we believe customers are making a conscious decision to use eco wherever possible. Personally, we try to live as naturally as possible and use eco products wherever we can, including shampoo, soap and cleaning products are all natural in our home. But until a few years ago we hadn’t considered the impact that chemical-based paints may be having on the environment as well as the people around us. We have been using paints for interiors & re-styling furniture for over 18 years & have always had to wear a mask, aired the rooms and considered the end user until we discovered Eco paints. Now we can paint away without a worry for the world or what we are breathing in. We have allot of period properties in South Devon that often have damp problems due to plastic paints being used over stone or lime plaster walls, and so to be able to offer an alternative that will prevent these problems is important. After all, the last thing we want to do is re-decorate after a year or so. The fact that eco paints are so easy to use and have so many benefits to conventional paints means there is no need for us to use anything else.
Are there any downsides to using eco-paints?
Honestly no, the only downside we have found so far is that the word has not really got out about it yet & that it is perceived to be more expensive. This means that professionals who have been in the trade for years are a little resistant to it at first. The thickness of the product can sometimes put people off as it can be a little harder to work with to start with, but with often only needing one coat means half the work. Everyone we have supplied who had reservations have come back with glowing reviews and now wont buy anything else. Currently, our range has 75 colours, so not as many as some of the other brands, but new shades are being added all the time and they can be mixed easily to create your own unique colours.
What type of eco-paint do you use, and why is this the best option?
At Relish we use Earthborn paints. We believe this is the best choice of paint due to the ease of use, breathability, durability & covering properties. As well as a great range of paints from A+ emissions rated eggshell to clay-based emulsions & masonry paints, they also have all the products needed for preparation including casein filler, primers and glazes. This meaning we can create a consistent scheme throughout a property without compromising on the breathability of the paints & the environment. Although the colour range is limited to 75 colours i never struggle to find a colour that works in a scheme, whether that is for a coastal property or on the Moors & the chalky matt finish is just what were after. Earthborn was the first in the UK to become the proud holders of the EU Ecolabel Licence for interior paints and varnishes. They are a great company to deal with, prices are comparable if not cheaper to high street premium brands, so overall they make doing business with them a pleasure. Our clients are always pleased with the results and surprised by the quality and finish.
Can you give your three tops tips for using eco-paint in the home for the first time?
1, Do bear in mind it is often a little thicker than conventional paints but a little goes along way. Do not water it down as you will lose the chalky matt finish and you will require more coats (unless applying to bare plaster then you can water down by 20%)
2, Make sure you research the correct preparation products to use in conjunction with the paint, such as primers and fillers. The benefits of using eco paint can be lost if you don’t use the correct products with it. Information is freely available online or from your local stockist, about the best products to use. A little preparation can make a huge difference to the finished look.
3, Due to the different paints and finishes available in the range, be sure to check which paint will be best for the job you have in mind.
You can see our full range of colours & finishes at: https://earthbornpaints.co.uk or pop into store to pick up a free chart & to view our brush our boards
We are always on hand if you need further help or advice.