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Low VOC Paint Options for a Healthier Home

March 29, 2023

Painting your home can be an exciting time, but did you know that traditional paints contain harmful chemicals that can affect the air quality of your home? These chemicals are known as volatile organic compounds (VOCs), and they can lead to a wide range of health problems. Fortunately, there are low VOC paint options available that can help you create a healthier home environment for you and your family. Here is everything you need to know about low VOC paint options.

What are VOCs?

Volatile organic compounds (VOCs) are chemicals that are released into the air as paint dries. These chemicals are known to cause a range of health problems, including headaches, dizziness, and irritation of the eyes, nose, and throat. In severe cases, exposure to VOCs can lead to nausea, vomiting, and even long-term damage to the central nervous system. Children, the elderly, and people with respiratory problems are particularly sensitive to these chemicals.

What is Low VOC Paint?

Low VOC paint is a type of paint that contains significantly lower levels of volatile organic compounds than traditional paints. The term “low VOC” generally refers to paints that contain no more than 50 grams of VOCs per liter of paint. By comparison, traditional paints can contain as much as 500 grams of VOCs per liter.

Why Choose Low VOC Paint?

There are many reasons to choose low VOC paint for your home. Here are some of the most significant benefits:

  • Better indoor air quality: Low VOC paint can help improve the air quality in your home by reducing the number of harmful chemicals that are released into the air.
  • Reduced health risks: Exposure to VOCs can lead to a range of health problems. By using low VOC paint, you can reduce the risk of these health problems.
  • Eco-friendly: Low VOC paint is better for the environment because it contains fewer harmful chemicals. This is especially important if you have pets or small children who spend a lot of time indoors.
  • Better odor: Low VOC paint has a much lower odor than traditional paints, which means you won’t have to deal with the strong smell of paint for as long.

What to Look for When Buying Low VOC Paint

When buying low VOC paint, it’s important to look for paints that have low levels of VOCs. Here are some of the things to look for:

  • VOC content: The VOC content of a paint is measured in grams per liter. Look for paints that contain no more than 50 grams of VOCs per liter.
  • Third-party certification: Look for paints that have been certified by third-party organizations, such as Green Seal or the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).
  • Brand reputation: Look for brands that have a good reputation for producing high-quality, low VOC paint.

Top Low VOC Paint Options

There are many low VOC paint options available on the market today. Here are some of the top options:

  • Sherwin-Williams Harmony
  • Benjamin Moore Natura
  • Behr Premium Plus Ultra
  • Valspar Simplicity
  • Dunn-Edwards Zero VOC


Q: How do I prepare to paint with low VOC paint?

A: Preparing to paint with low VOC paint is similar to preparing for traditional paint. You should always clean and prepare the surface to be painted, and make sure that you have all of the necessary tools and supplies. The main difference is that you won’t need to use as much ventilation because low VOC paint has a much lower odor.

Q: Does low VOC paint cost more than traditional paint?

A: Yes, low VOC paint generally costs more than traditional paint. However, the benefits of low VOC paint, such as improved indoor air quality and reduced health risks, make it well worth the extra cost.

Q: How do I dispose of leftover low VOC paint?

A: Leftover low VOC paint can be disposed of with your regular household trash. However, it’s a good idea to check with your local waste management facility to see if they have any specific guidelines or regulations for disposing of paint.

Q: Can I use low VOC paint outside?

A: Yes, low VOC paint can be used outside. However, you should always check the manufacturer’s recommendations to ensure that the paint is suitable for outdoor use.

Q: How long does low VOC paint take to dry?

A: The drying time for low VOC paint is similar to that of traditional paint. However, because low VOC paint has a lower odor, it may dry slightly faster because it doesn’t need as much ventilation.


Low VOC paint is an excellent option for anyone who wants to create a healthier home environment. By choosing low VOC paint, you can improve the air quality in your home, reduce the risk of health problems, and help protect the environment. With so many great low VOC paint options available, there’s never been a better time to make the switch.


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