Paints for exterior items and objects should be paints with a semigloss or satin finish, as these wear well in harsher environments, and are easier to clean. Semi-gloss and satin paints last longer and are less prone to showing imperfections than either eggshell-finish or flat paints. Newer formulations have been developed with a low percentage of volatile organic compounds (VOC), which are chemicals such as benzene and formaldehyde.
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Benjamin Moore Natura
At £32.40 a gallon, the Benjamin Moore Natura paint is relatively affordable for a low-VOC paint. The Benjamin Moore Natura can be blended for up to 3000 different shades. The New York Times review of this paint noted its smooth application and easy clean-up. The Benjamin Moore Natura dries within 30 minutes, does not have a strong odour, and is a water-based paint.
YOLO Colorhouse Outside No-VOC Paint
The Yolo Colorhouse Outside No-VOC Paint sells for £29.20 a gallon, and is a certified "Green Seal" paint. This means that it is a low-odour, water-based paint, that does not contain formaldehyde, VOCs, carcinogens, and ozone-depleting compounds, among other hazardous ingredients. The New York Times review lists this as one of the easiest paints to clean --- this is because it is a latex paint, which gives it a less sticky finish --- with a slightly sour odour during the application process. Of note is the YOLO Earth's Color collection, which divides 36 colours in six categories: Cloud, Prairie, Forest, Ocean, Desert and Canyon.
Sherwin-Williams Duration Exterior Acrylic Latex
The Sherwin Williams Duration paint sells for £32 a gallon, and is a thick acrylic-latex paint. It is a very durable paint, that only requires a one-coat application, making it a very affordable paint. The Sherwin-Williams Duration Exterior Acrylic Latex comes in three different finishes (Flat, Satin and Gloss) that allow you to customise the finished appearance from non-shiny to very lustrous. The entire Sherwin-Williams colour palette is available for this paint, so there are more than 1,500 different shades. As an acrylic latex paint, this paint is very easily washed, and does not readily stain. It is also a self-priming paint.
California 2010 100% Acrylic Latex Exterior
The California 2010 100% Acrylic Latex Exterior was ranked by Consumer Reports as the best exterior paint available. Consumer Reports regularly performs long-term testing on the durability of paints, examining their durability after 10 years. At £24.6 a gallon, the California 2010 comes in three different finishes: velvet flat, eggshell and satin gloss. The California 2010 held up very well to mildew, and did not suffer excessive colour changes or fading or cracking in the paint, according to Consumer Reports. It was also very easy to clean. While not listed as a low-VOC paint, the California 2010 is still categorised as an environmentally-friendly paint, and comes in six different colours.
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