I have to admit, I was very skeptical when I first heard about Home Depot’s new, green paint, The Freshaire Choice. I associate large corporations like this, who are not generally known for being environmentally or socially responsible, with a concern for their bottom line, not the earth. Whether or not this is true, Home Depot has made an impressive eco-friendly step with this line of paint.
The base paint and the pigments are free of VOCs (Volatile Organic Compounds) which pollute your interior air as you paint and for years after. This is an impressive feat in the large-scale paint industry. For example, Benjamin Moore only offers low VOC products, and from what I have heard, doesn’t plan to go to no VOCs anytime soon (although they might want to reconsider that now). Freshaire has been GreenGuard certified, also.
And Home Depot didn’t stop there, they went above and beyond by making a 100% recycled paint can and using soy-based inks for the paint can labels. These little details stand for a lot in my mind. Home Depot could have stopped at making a VOC free paint and been successful in the green market, but they chose additional green features, which they may not even see a profitable return on. That’s putting the environment first.
The price point on this paint is also very attractive. At $34-$39/gallon, this paint is priced way below most smaller, environmental paint companies like Anna Sova ($60 + shipping from Texas). But, it’s also priced about $15 below Benjamin Moore’s Aura line (Low VOC).
Now, how does the paint perform? Again, I was skeptical because I think Home Depot’s regular paint line Behr, is a pretty unimpressive product. But, Freshaire, is wonderful to work with. It covers incredibly well, has a very unobtrusive odor and the pigment is beautiful. There are currently 65 colors to choose from. With this as an affordable, green option within 20 miles of most people, there is really no excuse for not using eco-friendy paint.
At the same time, this paint is a great step, but it doesn’t change what Home Depot has done and continues to do to many small towns and business owners and the impact their entire organization has on the environment. You have to look at the big picture and decide what you think the environmental and social costs and benefits are. All I can tell you is that Freshaire is an environmentally friendly choice and it’s great to work with. The rest, you’ll have to decide for yourself!