Krylon's H20 Latex Spray Paint Is Better, but Not Best

Person spray painting a surface blue

Gautier Houba / Getty Images

When it comes to DIY projects, spray paint is super convenient. It covers just about anything, it won't chip off and it protects objects from the elements. It's also a quick and easy way to get a perfectly smooth finish on textured objects. Sadly though, spray paint is full of VOCs (volatile organic compounds) and other toxins that are equally bad for the planet and human health.

So Naturally Savvy was happy to discover Krylon's H2O Latex Spray Paint, a 100 percent acrylic latex formula that eliminates some of those harmful chemicals. But it isn't exactly perfect. Here's why:

The Eco-Super Spray Paint News

According to Krylon, the H2O spray paint releases 55 percent less smog-generating chemicals into the air than the average solvent-based spray paint, and VOC-emissions are reduced by 25 to 30 percent. There are 25 color options and it's still quick-drying (it dries in 15 minutes, and is fully dry to touch in just one hour). A nice change is that clean-up requires soap and water rather than harsh industrial solvents.

The Eco-Sad Spray Paint News

Yes, Krylon has reduced emissions with their H2O product, but (and this is a big but) three-quarters of the VOC emissions still exist, so we'd be hard-pressed to call this product "low-VOC" (as Krylon does on their website). And while it reduces more than half of smog-causing chemicals, it doesn't eliminate them. The spray paint is also stashed in an aerosol can--an ugly contributor of physical waste.

The Verdict

When it comes to paint, spray paint is pretty much as bad as it gets, so whenever possible, get out the rollers and pick up a can of low-VOC latex paint instead of taking the easier spray-able road.

For those projects that absolutely can't be done without spray paint, Krylon's H2O gets our vote. Whether we're uglying-up a bike or modernizing lighting, we can at least breathe a little bit easier.