Here at Designs by Bama, we believe in supporting responsible stewardships, as community members, and citizens of the planet. It is our mission to create healthy and natural spaces by sourcing sustainable products made of earth-friendly materials whenever feasible.
What is VOC?
Volatile Organic Compound (VOC). These are chemicals that let off-gas into the air – some of which have harmful long-term health effects.
Choose zero-VOC or low-VOC paints. We love companies such as Benjamin Moore, Behr and YOLO, who have zero to low-VOC lines available in a wide range of colours.
Skip the flame retardants, go organic. Standard upholstered goods are made from polyurethane foam (poly-foam) wrapped in dacron. Both materials are man-made and petroleum-based. They contain isocyanates and polyols that are highly flammable and are often treated with flame-retardant chemicals to reduce combustibility.
Choose natural fibers such as wool, cotton, or jute over synthetics. Wool is naturally fire retardant unlike its artificial counterparts, which are prone to igniting more easily. Wool absorbs moisture and captures dust or pollen, thus reducing humidity and allergens in the air. Synthetic rugs are often made from nylon, acetate, or polyester. These man-made fibers are highly flammable and are often treated with synthetic chemicals to reduce flammability, increasing the potency of toxins off-gassing into your home.
Opt for furniture made from solid wood such as walnut, oak, birch, teak or maple. Wood furniture is typically held together by basic wood joinery techniques, ensuring a stronger bond and requiring less adhesives, which are the main culprits in harmful VOC emissions. Avoid furniture composed of MDF or particleboard, which is made from compressed shavings or sawdust held together by synthetic resins, binders and glues.