Smart Eco Friendly Alternatives to Standard Paint

By Lance Manlove, in Zero Energy

It seems commonplace to just naturally paint the drywall in your new home.  Some people might ask, “what else would you do with your walls if you didn’t paint them?”  There are several eco friendly alternative to just normal painting.  Standard paints and other adhesives in your home contain VOC’s or volatile organic compounds.  These VOC’s will off gas over time and compromise the indoor air quality of your home and can lead to health issues if the house is not properly ventilated.  Some paint manufactures such as Sherwin Williams ( , Benjamin Moore ( , and Mythic Paints (  have developed Low VOC or No VOC paints to meet the demands of today’s green conscience consumer.  This is a good step toward better indoor air quality and healthier homes, but can we do better?  I think we can…

We have a home currently under construction in which we are using a combination of clay paints and American Clay to cover the drywall.  You have to re-think your standard methodologies in terms of building sequencing, but it is well worth the effort when you witness the results.  The first coat of the American Clay wall material was applied today and already the interior of this home seems to be transformed.  What is American Clay and what are the advantages to using American Clay?  American Clay Earth Plasters are a natural, environmentally friendly way to finish any interior. Non-toxic and made in the USA, these plasters are an alternative to cement, acrylic and lime plasters, offering superior color, richness, texture and depth not found with other finishes.  All American Clay finishes contain no VOC’s and are have a wide range of finish treatments and color options.  See the attached pictures of our craftsman applying the base coat for the Loma finish – in another week the final coats will be applied and the house will be ready for doors and trim.  If the clay finish does not fit into your budget you can opt for clay paints instead – BioShield ( offers a line of clay paints that get applied just like paint but contain no VOC’s and look great.  We are using both products in this home currently under construction and can’t wait to see the end results.