Ed. Note: After reading this article, Ted Sosniki, President and CEO of Go Green World Products, LLC, manufacturer of Green Planet Paints, offered some additional and helpful advice regarding these paints. His comments are indicated in quotation marks.
I came across Green Planet Paints the other day while doing some research on another product. It was the photo and the tag line that caught my eye. A woman is sitting in a tub of paint and the tag line reads “Paint so safe you can bath in it.” It turns out this is a petroleum free, “truly zero” VOC, non-toxic paint.
Ted: Note I would not recommend bathing in it though as it would dry and clog your skin pours. Not good health wise.
It’s important to note that while the big commercial paint manufacturers have been doing a good job at lowering their overall energy use and eliminating the noxious fumes from some of the chemicals that are needed to make synthetic paint, according to the Green Planet website, there are still over 1500 chemicals used to make most commercial paints and further, the main ingredient is still petroleum. So making paint is still a fairly petroleum-intensive process.
Ted: …[commercial paint companies] have not yet done anything as far as petrochemical reduction, increased Bio based content or recycled content which is what defines “Green”.
Green Planet Paint, on the other hand, is plant and clay-based that is completely petroleum free and “Truly Zero VOC.”
Ted: (Although Green Planet Paints are a true zero VOC paint the paint is not an absolute zero VOC but it does have the lease amount in the industry even after tinting with the GPP tint system, the actual VOC level is at 0.08 g/l. Also, VOC content/emissions dose not define green by its self, green means that not only is there a reduction in VOC emissions but that there is also a reduction in petrochemical content, an increased use of sustainable and recycled content and this is what defines green.)
It’s explained on the website that even in zero VOC paints there exists about 5 g/l (grams/liter) of VOCs/liter of paint. It consists of plant-based binders and additives and mineral-based pigments. While there is an odour, which according to reviews on the website, is the smell of damp clay, or “earthy,” it is not toxic and will go away within a week or so.
Ted: Note that in some cases a chemical or cleaner small is sometimes noticed when GPP is applied to latex paints that are less than 10 years old and the GPP primer was not used. We have also noticed that in few cases where an exterior latex was used on the interior of a building, this chemical or cleaner smell is sometimes strong and can last up to 30 to 45 days, especially when the GPP primer was not used. In these cases we found that it is the underlying latex that is gassing off and causing this and it can include some bleeding of the underlying paint into the clay of the GPP paint giving a translucent look in some places. The GPP primer is a special primer and not a thinned out highly flat paint like that of the big manufactures. The GPP primer was designed to lock down a wall and prevents gas off of the underlying substrates/paints.
Green Planet Paint Color Palette itself consists of 48 naturally pigmented colours in varying tones from vivid and intense to soft, pastel. Coverage is 350-400 square feet and is applied to walls with a roller, brush or sprayer.
Ted: custom coloring is available at a one time fee if the color requested has never been matched yet. There are some limitations as minerals cannot make synthesized colors like oil based tints.
Green Planet Paint was originally developed by Meredith Aronson in the early 2000s. Meredith is a materials scientist with an expertise in clay and natural pigments. She was interested in creating a paint out of non-toxic, non-petroleum based materials. Eventually, she developed a paint that uses clay and natural pigments with soy/plant-based resin binder. She eventually sold her paint company to Go Green World Products, LLC after filing for bankruptcy.
I contacted Ted Sosniki, President and CEO of Go Green World Products, and asked him a few questions about the paint. One of my first thoughts was whether this is a washable paint, and how long it was expected to last. Ted told me that indeed it is washable, and applied properly, the paint will last for about 10-15 years on a previously painted wall, and up to 20 years on a new wall. I noticed that the website says that Green Planet Paints “can improve the air quality in the room or building by over 50% and are listed on the federal IRS tax deduction/credit bill.” I asked Ted to explain that a bit more. I was wondering if Green Planet acted like American Clay which neutralizes the negative ions in any room where it’s applied; his response:
“Kind of like American Clay but on steroids, due to the resin / clay mix with Tio2 [titanium dioxide], it becomes a air scrubber. Tio2 is used on all kinds of air cleaning systems, lights that can remove smells from the air and water systems for purification of water.”
Finish: The paint is available in Eggshell or Flat, as well as Primer. Available sizes: 1 quart, 1 gallon, 5 gallons.
Ted: A semi gloss is available upon request but not necessary to use in bathrooms or kitchens like the petroleum paints as the eggshell was developed to be an eggshell from the beginning and not a blend of flat and gloss like the petroleum paints.
Application: While application is as simple as using a roller, brush, or sprayer because this is a different kind of paint, the website provides a few tips on getting the desired smooth finish you are looking for. I’ve highlighted a few that you might want to keep in mind if planning to use this paint, but definitely refer to the website for more specific instructions if you are planning on using this paint.
- Order the correct amount of paint needed for the job. If more than one gallon of paint in the same colour is needed for a room, mix the paint in a large bucket as colour can vary slightly from gallon to gallon.
- Use high quality brushes and rollers or a sprayer. Horse hair brushes and quality cotton or wool rollers with a nap of 1/2 to 1″. Do not use foam rollers as the paint absorbs into the foam. Ted: (you do not need to use high quality brushes and rollers, simple cost effective non-synthetic brushes and rollers work the best)
- Prime wall surfaces before applying paint as absorption rate may vary with paint.
- Do the cut-in first (paint along the corners with a brush), and apply the rest of the paint with a roller or sprayer while cut-in is still wet in order to avoid a “framed” look. Ted: (do not do large rooms like this on hot dry days as issues will arise. For best results we recommend downloading the helpful hints document)
- Wait until the first coat is dry before applying the second. Drying rate will vary depending on the humidity in the air, but will usually take around two days.
- To store brushes and rollers while taking a break — wrap in a plastic bag and twist end closed around handle. Store in refrigerator. Can be stored this way for up to two days.
Where to buy: SIP Distribution is the Canadian distributor. There are a few retailers who sell it, however, if there is no one in your province you can contact SIP Distribution directly.