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November 23, 2020
What do these three things have in common: leaving all the lights in the house on for three hours, cooking six meals in a microwave oven, or twenty-seven blow-outs for that glorious mane of yours?
Easy. One gallon of paint.
Or, rather, the amount of energy conserved by recycling one gallon of paint. Sounds like a lot, right? That’s because it is. Approximately 100 kilowatt-hours of energy, as it were. And that’s not all. It also keeps 115 pounds of carbon dioxide out of the air – and, since carbon dioxide is a gas, that’s a pretty significant amount.
Paint is actually a doozy when it comes to the environment. Not only do several of the components of paint (the things that make it stay liquid and not a congealed mess, and various add-ons like rust prevention, anti-settling agents, defoamers, etc.) possess highly toxic qualities, but the production process itself creates a lot of waste and run-off that needs to be treated.
To be clear, when I say “recycled paint,” I don’t mean paint that’s flaked off a pipe, or that you’ve scraped off a wall when the time came for an update. We’re talking cans here; you know, that pile of mainly used-up paint cans in your garage, or your basement. Funny, isn’t it, how seldom a can of paint is exactly how much we need. And where do those last dregs of paint usually end up? Landfills.
It’s a vicious cycle of waste and pollution, and in a day and age where sustainability is prioritized, it’s undesirable and avoidable. Enter: recycled paint.
Recycled paint addresses and neutralizes both of the problematic issues of paint – production and disposal. It’s jumped forward by leaps and bounds in recent years in terms of available colors, and it’s readily available. Here are some fun facts about recycled paint, and why you should consider it for your next project.
PICK YOUR POISON
There are two kinds of recycled paint, re-processed and reblended. Re-blended paint is a combination of several kinds of paint filtered together. It has a very high percentage of recycled paint, as high as completely recycled – like our new line of 100% recycled paint, Refuge. Re-processed paint mixes old paint with new paint and some new materials. There are several grades of this variety of paint, with various ratios of new to old paint.
Both varieties of recycled paint lessen the demand on our natural resources, eliminating significant greenhouse gas production and water pollution. You can’t go wrong here.
LOTS OF BANG FOR YOUR BUCK
Recycled paint uses high quality materials, top-tier paints from good brands. Many studies have shown that recycled paint compares favorably with high quality brands in terms of performance and durability. It’s not just a bunch of old paints mixed together in a bucket – recycled paint is carefully crafted and filtered, and these days it’s possible to create a wide variety of colors (not just neutrals).
NO SACRIFICES NECESSARY
Recycled paint is now available in all shapes and sizes, with all different kinds of additives, for different kinds of surfaces and in many different forms of application. There are recycled primers, paints for metal surfaces, spray paints and anti-fungal paints and paints of various grades. You can find exactly what you’re looking for, and rest easily knowing your paint created no new waste.
You’re also not missing out on quality. Since recycled paints are made of high-quality materials, you’re getting – you guessed it – a high quality product, with saturated color, washability, serious hiding power, and excellent adhesion.
SAY BYE-BYE TO LANDFILLS
The average family produces 1-3 gallons of leftover paint each year. That is a whole lot of cans taking up a whole lot of prime landfill real estate. And not just your local landfill, either – since paint is often classified as a hazardous material, it has to go to a special landfill for such products, and I don’t know about you, but I don’t feel great about a landfill of especially toxic materials. Yuck.
This is especially undesirable because, usually, the paint that is leftover from projects is still completely usable, there just isn’t quite enough of it to do a job on its own. It’s particularly troublesome to send a product that still has life in it to go sit in a landfill just because of the quantity.
A fresh coat of paint is the best way to breathe new life into your space. It gives you a blank canvas, whether you’re looking to reinvent your home for yourself, or for the next people to live in and love. Creating that blank canvas with recycled paint is a meaningful step towards sustainability, towards setting the stage for the kind of consumer you want to be. We know it’s not always easy to shop sustainably; it can be cost-prohibitive, uninclusive, even kind of bougie. Recycled paint, though, is a great way to make that leap, without sacrificing quality or color or accessibility. We hope you’ll take a look at our new line of recycled paint, Refuge, with its ten varieties of blue and greys and greens designed to help turn your space into your sanctuary, and take this leap towards building a more sustainable society with us!
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