So, Does It Work? – ECOS Paint

Today we are reviewing ECOS Paints, a product line that has been manufactured and sold in Britain since 1988, but only recently opened up manufacturing and distribution in the United States.  Available in a large variety of finishes and specialized application formulas, ECOS promotes itself as being solvent free, odorless, and free of all toxins.  In fact, it was invented by a paint chemist, Ian West, who discovered he was chemically sensitive after feeling ill for some time.  According to ECOS, their paints and varnishes are so pure you can actually eat them, although they warned they were still pretty nasty tasting, so I decided not to add that to the testing procedure!

Here are the results for what I did test –

Manufacturer:  ECOS Paints

Paint: Soft Sheen Wallpaint

Cost:  $49.95 for White and $58.95 for colors in 1.32 gallon size – retail (online)

Composition: Can include some or all of the following: Water, acrylic dispersion, vinyl acetate dispersions, titanium dioxide, pigments (various), thickeners – cellulosic and polymeric, barytes, limestone, clay, synthetic wax, dispersing aids (various)

VOCs: none

Certifications: EN71 compliant (Nursery paint only)

Color range: 108 colors, divided up into 8 groups

Coverage: Estimate 350 700 sf per 1.32 gallon can (corrected)

Testing results

Paint odor in can – Very little detectable odor, and none at all when more than 6″ from can.

Consistency of paint – Very thick and smooth.

Coverage – The first coat was enough to effectively cover up most of the existing dark tan paint, but a second coat was applied to fill in any small texture gaps.

Drying time – 30 minutes till dry to touch.

Odor after one day – None.

Adhesion after one day – No residue visible on tape after removal.  Tape did not affect painted surface.

Note:  Paint provided by ECOS Paints for our use in test.

Conclusion:  Very good hideability, and smooth, no splatter application.  Very nice consistency.  Odor is virtually none existent.  Especially good choice for those with chemical sensitivities or for use in a nursery or child’s bedroom.  White is the brightest and purest of all whites tested so far.  Definite sheen to paint.  Overall I was very pleased with the paint, and will consider it for future projects.

Note: We chose not to apply paint under ideal conditions, including the use of a primer, so your results may vary.  To read more about how we approached our review process, please read this post.

To see previous paint reviews, please click here.

If you have any experience with this paint, please feel free to add your comments below.  The more people who share their knowledge, the more useful these reviews will be.

12 Responses to “So, Does It Work? – ECOS Paint”

  1. Morgan G Says:

    Hi Rachel! Great post – do you know if paints with similar properties are available for exteriors?

  2. Bob Emptage Says:

    Hi Rachel – I was just told that you had written this review. Thanks for testing ECOS Paints! We’re pleased, bot not surprised of course :) that you liked them.

    Morgan – yes, we also have exterior paints. If you contact me at the number listed on our site, I will be happy to talk (or email) through the options for your particular application.

  3. Leigh Says:

    Do you know of any tests done on their varnishes? I need to stain a dining room table and want something safe and non toxic for my family.

  4. Rachel Says:

    Unfortunately, I haven’t had a chance to try them out yet, and I don’t know if anyone in the U.S. has. They are nice folks to work with though, so You might be able to get them to send you a tester pot to try it out. Let us know if you do wind up trying it and let us know what you think!

  5. Fiona Says:

    Have had terrible problems with their exterior paints. Difficult to apply – weather conditions must be perfect – and paint started cracking and bubbling within 3 months! A professional painted our porch timbers for us. We have just had to replace all the timbers as the damp got in under the paint and rotted the timbers as a result. Expensive to buy and expensive to replace what is damaged. Yes, I did get back to ECOS about this and they were not helpful.

  6. Bill Says:

    @ Fiona, you should probably find a new “professional” because it sounds like he messed up, not the paint

  7. mario Says:

    this is by far the best paint ever. just the primer goes on so smooth, then the atmosphere paint is amazing, it really does not smel like anything and it really does seems to keep the room cleaner.

    i sleep like a baby with it – i was allergic to certain paints and for my baby it served wonderfully!

    i actually got it from the UK shipped to FL back a few years ago. they are great. and the walls are still baby blue!

    the voc free in US is really not , and you can smell the difference!

  8. James Repace Says:

    I have used ECOS interior paint with a primer, and ECOS exterior semi-gloss varnish, 2 coats on a sanded surface on tongue-and-groove cedar soffits. It does have to be applied at the right exterior temperature. It was applied last November, and has gone through the coldest winter we’ve ever had in Maryland in 40 years. The exterior finish looks like a piece of fine furniture. It is very impressive. The interior paint has no odor. I highly recommend it.

  9. James Says:

    @Fiona, I agree with Bill, this seams like more of an application issue than a problem with the paint itself.

  10. Ruth Says:

    please advise if anyone has used on bird cages. I would like to re-finish one or two of my pets’ cages. Over time, rust does occur, so I would of course remove the rust and use a primer, but I don’t want to endanger my birds.

  11. Rachel Says:

    I haven’t heard of anyone using it that way. I suggest you contact the manufacturer. They might have more information.

  12. Antonia Says:

    I am a decorator of more than 20 years experience and I use Ecos paints whenever the job allows me to. Sadly many clients do not understand the importance of chemical free and non toxic paints and materials.The small price difference between any ‘good quality’paint brand and Ecos is a small price to pay compared with the benefits. ECOS paint is a fantastic product and incredibly durable. I painted my parents house nine years ago throughout with Ecos and used the soft sheen and Matt finishes and unlike most jobs I can return to see how the paint is wearing. It is incredibly durable even in the hall and in heavy ‘taffic’ areas. Walls still only requires a wipe down in order to clean well. The finish and coverage is comparable to any top quality paint brands. I always recommend Ecos to my clients and although the clour chart is fairly limited (this is often a good thing for decision making reasons! It is usually sceptism or a budget that sways them to an inferior product.

Leave a Reply