Non-Toxic Wall Paint Options, 25 Things You Should Know

As we become more conscious about our environment and health, choosing non-toxic wall paint options for our homes and offices is increasingly important. I’m here to help you make an informed decision. I’ll discuss various options available, their benefits, and aspects to consider before making your choice.

Non-toxic wall paint options:

Non-toxic wall paint options include low VOC and zero VOC paints like Behr Premium Plus, Benjamin Moore’s Natura, Sherwin-Williams’ Harmony, and Farrow & Ball’s Estate Emulsion. Natural paints such as BioShield’s Clay Paint, ECOS Paints, and Earthborn’s Ecopro Matt Emulsion are also eco-friendly alternatives. Other paint alternatives include limewash and clay plaster from brands like RomaBio and American Clay.

Discover a world of non-toxic wall paint options that are eco-friendly, safe for your family, and can still provide beautiful and long-lasting results. Your walls and the planet will thank you! Read on to explore these healthier, more environmentally-conscious alternatives.

Eco-Friendly Wall Paint Choices

Painting your home can greatly improve its overall appearance and boost its value. However, conventional paints often contain harmful chemicals that can cause health problems, especially for those with allergies or sensitivities.

What Makes Paint Toxic?

Conventional paints typically contain volatile organic compounds (VOCs), which are chemicals that evaporate at room temperature. VOCs can cause respiratory problems, headaches, and other health issues. They also contribute to climate change and indoor air pollution.

Therefore, non-toxic paints without or with minimal VOC content have become increasingly popular.

Low VOC and Zero VOC Paints

Low VOC and zero VOC paints are eco-friendly alternatives to conventional ones that emit fewer or no volatile organic compounds. These paint options protect you and the environment while still providing a high-quality finish.

Some brands that offer low and zero VOC options include Behr, Benjamin Moore, Sherwin-Williams, and Farrow & Ball.

1. Behr

I recommend Behr Premium Plus, a low-VOC, Greenguard-certified paint line. It is self-priming, provides great coverage, and is available in a wide range of colors.

2. Benjamin Moore

Benjamin Moore’s Natura is a zero VOC paint option that is also certified Asthma & Allergy Friendly by the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America. It is available in thousands of colors and has a quick-drying formula.

3. Sherwin-Williams

For another zero-VOC option, consider Sherwin-Williams’ Harmony. Apart from being odor-free, this product also contains innovative technology that helps reduce airborne concentrations of formaldehyde and other aldehydes, improving indoor air quality.

4. Farrow & Ball

This UK-based company offers Estate Emulsion, a high-quality, low-VOC paint option that shows excellent color depth and a unique matte finish. Although it is on the pricier side, Farrow & Ball’s paint line is made from eco-friendly ingredients and is water-based.

Natural Paints

Natural paints are made from natural ingredients like clay, lime, and plant-based materials. They do not emit any harmful chemicals and can even provide added benefits like better moisture regulation in your home. Some of the well-known natural paint brands include BioShield, ECOS, and Earthborn.

1. BioShield

BioShield’s Clay Paint is a zero-VOC option made from natural clay, minerals, and plant-based ingredients, proving to be both environmentally friendly and hypoallergenic. It can be used on a variety of surfaces, including drywall, plaster, and masonry.


ECOS Paints offer a wide range of natural, non-toxic, and zero-VOC paint products. Their paints are free of allergens, odors, and harmful chemicals, making them an ideal choice for people with allergies, asthma, or multiple chemical sensitivities.

3. Earthborn

Earthborn’s Ecopro Matt Emulsion is a water-based, low-VOC paint made from sustainable and environmentally friendly ingredients. It dries quickly to a flat, matte finish and can be used on walls, ceilings, and woodwork.

Paint Alternatives

Aside from low VOC, zero VOC, and natural paints, there are other paint alternatives available. Limewash and clay plaster are two options that offer different textures and finishes while still being eco-friendly and non-toxic.

1. Limewash

Limewash is a traditional paint alternative made from slaked lime, water, and natural pigments. It creates a beautiful, breathable finish with a soft, velvety appearance. Additionally, limewash has antimicrobial properties, which can help inhibit the growth of mold and mildew.

RomaBio is one company offering lime-based products, including durable exterior limewash paint.

2. Clay plaster

Clay plaster is a mixture of natural clay, pigments, and other additives that can be applied to your walls and ceilings to create a textured, earthy finish. It regulates moisture and humidity, making it suitable for various climates. One reputable brand offering clay plasters is American Clay.

In conclusion, there are numerous non-toxic wall paint options on the market. By choosing one of the eco-friendly alternatives mentioned above, you can create a beautiful, healthy living environment for yourself and your loved ones while also helping to reduce indoor air pollution and protect the environment.

For more information on green building practices and tips on how to improve indoor air quality, visit the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s website.

Analyzing the Safety of Wall Paint

Often a question arises, “Is wall paint non-toxic?” It’s essential to explore this topic in-depth, as exposure to toxic chemicals found in some paint may have adverse effects on health. Many individuals who are seeking to live sustainably and consider eco-friendly options are shifting towards non-toxic paint.

Health Impacts of Toxic Wall Paint

Traditional wall paints may contain harmful chemicals referred to as VOCs (Volatile Organic Compounds). These substances evaporate into the surrounding air and can lead to severe health problems.

According to the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), exposure to VOCs causes acute symptoms like headaches, dizziness, visual and respiratory impairment, and skin irritation. Prolonged exposure may even have lasting effects such as damage to the liver, kidneys, and central nervous system.

Children are particularly vulnerable to these toxins, as their immune systems and internal organs are still developing. Pregnant women should also be cautious, as exposure to these harmful substances can potentially lead to birth defects.

Types of Toxic Components Found in Wall Paints

– Formaldehyde

Formaldehyde is a known carcinogen that can cause respiratory issues and skin irritation. It can be found in many traditional wall paint formulations as a preservative. This toxic compound can evaporate from the painted surface over time and contaminate indoor air quality.

– Glycol Ethers

A group of toxic chemicals, glycol ethers, are commonly used as solvents in wall paint. They can cause adverse effects on fertility, as well as irritation to the skin, eyes, and respiratory system.

– Heavy Metals

Heavy metals like lead, mercury, and cadmium are found in some wall paints, primarily in pigments. Exposure to these harmful substances can lead to severe health problems, including neurological damage, pregnancy complications, and delayed mental and physical development in children.

Introduction to Non-Toxic Wall Paint

Environmentally-conscious manufacturers are designing non-toxic paints as a safer alternative to traditional wall paint. Also known as “eco paint” or “green paint,” such products minimize or eliminate toxic chemicals found in conventional paint formulations.

– Low-VOC and Zero-VOC Paints

Low-VOC and zero-VOC paints are designed to emit fewer harmful substances than traditional wall paints. Low-VOC paint typically contains less than 50 grams of VOCs per liter, while zero-VOC paint contains no more than 5 grams per liter, according to the EPA.

These paints provide a safer alternative that significantly reduces the risk of health issues associated with exposure to VOCs.

– Natural Paints

Natural paints are formulated using plant-based ingredients, minerals, or other natural resources. They are free from synthetic chemicals, providing a completely non-toxic option. Some examples of natural paint include clay paint, milk paint, and lime paint.

Choosing the Right Non-Toxic Wall Paint

I recommend selecting non-toxic paints as a way to create a healthy indoor environment. These eco-friendly alternatives not only protect your personal well-being but also contribute to a more sustainable world.

First, examine the paint’s labels to ensure it complies with government regulations and is specifically labeled as low-VOC or zero-VOC paint. Green Seal and GREENGUARD are reputable certifications that affirm the paint meets the necessary environmental and health standards.

Next, examine the product’s Material Safety Data Sheet (MSDS) to determine if the product contains any harmful chemicals or allergens that may affect your sensitivities.

Lastly, choose a paint formulated with natural ingredients if you prefer an entirely toxin-free environment. Note that natural paints may have different application methods and drying times, so be sure to educate yourself on these factors to ensure a successful painting project.

In conclusion, wall paint can be toxic, particularly if it contains ingredients like formaldehyde, glycol ethers, and heavy metals. To create a safe indoor environment, opt for low-VOC or zero-VOC paints, or choose natural alternatives that are free from synthetic chemicals.

By taking these steps, you can significantly reduce or eliminate exposure to harmful toxins found in some wall paint formulations and rest assured that you are contributing to a healthier and more sustainable world.

Exploring Sherwin-Williams’ Low VOC Paints

Sherwin-Williams is a renowned and well-established company in the paint industry. Many homeowners and professionals rely on their high-quality products for various painting projects.

One of the common concerns among consumers today is finding no VOC (volatile organic compounds) paint options, but does Sherwin-Williams offer a solution to this concern? The answer is: Yes! Sherwin-Williams does have a no VOC paint option in their product lineup.

What Are VOCs and Why Are They a Concern?

Volatile organic compounds (VOCs) are chemicals that evaporate at room temperature and can be found in various household products, including paints. They can have adverse health effects, especially for people with allergies, asthma, or other respiratory issues.

Moreover, they contribute to environmental pollution and indoor air quality problems. As such, many consumers now seek environmentally friendly and low or no VOC paint options for their homes and workplaces.

Fortunately, Sherwin-Williams has stepped up to provide a no-VOC paint alternative for consumers who value eco-friendly and health-conscious options. However, it’s essential to understand that some paints may still contain harmful chemicals even if they are labeled as no VOC.

Harmony Interior Acrylic Latex – Sherwin-Williams’ No VOC Paint

Sherwin-Williams offers a no VOC paint under their Harmony Interior Acrylic Latex product line. This high-quality acrylic latex paint is formulated to provide a durable, long-lasting finish with excellent coverage.

– Key Features of Harmony Interior Acrylic Latex Paint

  • No VOCs: As mentioned earlier, this paint is formulated without any volatile organic compounds, making it a safer and more environmentally friendly choice.
  • Anti-microbial properties: Harmony Interior Acrylic Latex contains agents that prevent the growth of mold and mildew, ensuring a healthier living environment.
  • Odor-eliminating technology: This feature helps to reduce common household odors, such as pet smells, cooking fumes, and cigarette smoke, thereby improving indoor air quality.
  • Superior coverage and durability: The paint provides excellent coverage and a long-lasting finish, maintaining its beauty and performance for a longer time.
  • Wide range of finishes: Harmony Interior Acrylic Latex is available in various finishes, including flat, eggshell, satin, and semi-gloss, suitable for different applications and preferences.

Recommendations for Using Harmony Interior Acrylic Latex Paint

  1. Surface preparation: Ensure the surface is clean, dry, and free of any contaminants before painting. Proper surface preparation can significantly impact the paint’s performance and appearance.
  2. Priming: Although Harmony Interior Acrylic Latex is a self-priming paint, priming the surface is recommended for optimal performance, especially when covering dark colors or painting over surfaces with significant surface defects.
  3. Application: Use a high-quality brush, roller, or airless sprayer for applying the paint. Make sure to apply the paint evenly and maintain a wet edge to avoid lap marks and streaks.
  4. Ventilation: While Harmony Interior Acrylic Latex paint has little to no odor and no VOCs, it is still essential to ensure proper ventilation during and after painting to promote a healthy indoor environment.
  5. Recoat: Allow the paint to dry for at least four hours before recoating or applying additional layers for the best results.


Yes, Sherwin-Williams does offer a no VOC paint option with their Harmony Interior Acrylic Latex product. As consumers continue to seek environmentally friendly and healthier options, it’s essential to have products like these available to accommodate their needs.

Using this no-VOC paint can significantly improve indoor air quality and reduce the health risks associated with traditional paints. If you are planning a painting project, it’s worth considering Sherwin-Williams’ Harmony Interior Acrylic Latex for a healthier and more environmentally friendly approach.

For more information on VOCs and indoor air quality, you can visit the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) website, which provides various resources and guidelines on this subject.

Health-Conscious Paint Alternatives

While traditional paints have been a popular choice for many years, they often contain toxins that may be harmful to both humans and the environment.

Therefore, it’s essential to consider eco-friendly and healthy alternatives to paint that not only provide a beautiful finish but also promote wellness and sustainability.

Low-VOC Paints

One option to consider is low-VOC paints. VOCs, or volatile organic compounds, are chemicals found in many products, including traditional paints. VOCs can have adverse health effects and contribute to air pollution.

Low-VOC paints contain fewer of these harmful chemicals, making them a healthier and more environmentally friendly option than standard paints.

While low-VOC paints may be slightly more expensive than traditional paints, the benefits to both personal health and the environment make them a worthwhile investment. I recommend looking for paints with the Green Seal certification, which guarantees that they meet strict environmental standards.

Learn more about low-VOC paints and their benefits from the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

Natural Paints

Another healthy alternative to traditional paint is natural paint. These eco-friendly options are made from renewable resources such as plant-based oils, clay, and minerals.

  1. Milk Paint: Made from a combination of milk proteins, lime, and natural pigments, milk paint is a non-toxic and biodegradable option that can provide a beautiful, matte finish. It is particularly suitable for wood surfaces and is popular among furniture refinishers.
  2. Clay-Based Paints: Made from natural clays and mineral pigments, clay-based paints provide a unique, earthy finish. They also have the added benefit of helping to regulate indoor humidity, which can improve air quality and comfort.
  3. Limewash: A popular choice for centuries, limewash is a mixture of lime and natural pigments. It offers a durable and breathable finish with natural antibacterial properties, making it an excellent choice for both interior and exterior surfaces.

Find more information on natural paints and their benefits from The National Center for Biotechnology Information (NCBI).

Before You Paint: Proper Paint Removal and Surface Preparation

Before using any healthy alternative to paint, it’s crucial to properly remove any old paint, especially if it contains lead, as this can be hazardous to your health. The United States Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) offers resources on safe paint removal practices.

Additionally, ensure that your surfaces are clean and properly primed before applying your chosen paint alternative. This will help to guarantee a professional and lasting finish.

Final Thoughts

Whether you choose low-VOC paints or natural paint options, these healthy alternatives to traditional paint can help you create a beautiful, eco-friendly, and healthy living space.

I recommend researching various products and consulting with professionals to find the perfect paint alternative for your specific needs.

Remember, investing in a healthy alternative to paint not only benefits your personal well-being but also contributes to a cleaner and more sustainable environment for future generations.

Choosing Safe Paint for Your Walls

With a growing emphasis on health and environmental consciousness, selecting safe paint for walls has become increasingly important. Many paint options on the market are safe for you, your family, and the environment.

Low-VOC and Zero-VOC Paints

– What are VOCs?

Volatile organic compounds (VOCs) are chemicals that can be found in various products, including paints. These compounds evaporate at room temperature, and when released into the air, they can have a negative impact on both indoor air quality and human health.

VOCs may cause symptoms such as headaches, dizziness, and irritation of the eyes, nose, and throat. The United States Environmental Protection Agency provides additional information on the topic.

– Low-VOC and Zero-VOC Benefits

Low-VOC and zero-VOC paint provide a healthier option as they contain significantly reduced levels of volatile organic compounds. These paints can help improve indoor air quality, minimize health risks, and reduce environmental pollution.

Low-VOC paints typically contain 250 grams or fewer of VOCs per liter, while zero-VOC paints contain 5 grams or fewer per liter.

– Recommended Brands

A variety of paint brands offer low-VOC and zero-VOC options. Some popular choices include:

  • Benjamin Moore Natura
  • Sherwin-Williams Harmony
  • Behr Premium Plus

When selecting your paint, ensure “low-VOC” or “zero-VOC” is specified on the label.

Natural Paints

Natural paints are composed of ingredients derived from natural sources, such as plant-based solvents and resins, clay, chalk, or natural pigments. These paints are generally biodegradable and non-toxic, making them an excellent option for eco-conscious consumers.

– Types of Natural Paints

There are four main types of natural paints:

  1. Milk Paint: Made from casein or milk protein, milk paint is the most ancient form of paint. It is non-toxic and offers a unique, matte finish, making it ideal for furniture and distressed looks.
  2. Clay Paint: Composed of natural clay, minerals, and water, clay paint offers a highly breathable and odorless option. It is best suited for interior walls.
  3. Lime Paint: Also known as a whitewash, lime paint is made from slaked lime and creates a stunning, matte finish when applied to walls. It is highly durable and resistant to mold and bacteria growth, making it ideal for humid areas such as bathrooms.
  4. Chalk Paint: This paint is made from chalk, water, and pigments, giving it an exceptional matte finish. It adheres well to surfaces, making it ideal for furniture, and requires minimal preparation.

– Recommended Brands

Some reputable natural paint brands include:

  • The Real Milk Paint Co.
  • BioShield Paint
  • Earthborn Paints

Always read the labels and choose products that are non-toxic, low-VOC, and preferably have third-party certifications.

Considerations for Choosing Safe Paints

When selecting safe paint for your walls, consider the following factors:

  1. Purpose: Determine the desired finish and surface you plan to paint. This will help you select the appropriate paint type, such as matte, satin, or semi-gloss.
  2. Budget: Generally, low-VOC, zero-VOC, and natural paints may cost more than conventional paints. However, investing in these options provides long-term benefits to health and the environment.
  3. Certification: Look for paints with certifications from reputable organizations such as Green Seal, GREENGUARD, or Cradle to Cradle. These certifications ensure that the paint meets rigorous environmental and health standards.
  4. Colors and pigments: Choose colors that reflect your personal taste and preferences. Keep in mind that some natural pigments may be less vibrant than synthetic ones, but they offer a unique look that many people find appealing.


Selecting safe paint for your walls not only improves indoor air quality but also promotes a healthy and eco-friendly living environment. By choosing low-VOC, zero-VOC, or natural paints, you can minimize health risks, reduce environmental pollution, and create a beautiful space in your home.

Always read labels carefully, consider your needs and budget, and look for recommendations and certifications to ensure the best possible outcome.

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