wallpapers made of natural materials
Photo: David Prince
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Healthy Choices

In response to concerns about indoor air quality, wallpaper companies now offer products and manufacturing methods that are friendlier to your lungs—and the planet. Here are some things to look for.

Acrylic coatings. These replace vinyl coatings, which can off-gas VOCs and plasticizers and may contain trace amounts of heavy metals, such as lead and cadmium.

Water-based inks. Oil-based ones contain VOCs.

Greenguard certification. This means that a paper or an adhesive has been lab tested and shown to have little or no formaldehyde, VOCs, respirable particles, heavy metals, or toxic additives. Some vinyls do meet Greenguard's stringent standards.
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