Removing that fresh paint smell

Everyone loves freshly painted walls.

The only downside is having to deal with the smell of drying paint.

That fresh paint smell is caused by evaporating solvents in the paint.

These solvents are known as VOC’s (Which stands for volatile organic compounds) and include chemicals such as ethanol, benzene and formaldehyde.


These chemicals are poisonous and hazardous for your health.

They can cause headaches, dizziness and vision problems plus irritate your eyes, throat and lungs. Not only that, they can also damage your liver, kidneys and nervous system.

It can take days or even months for these fumes to fully evaporate. And this can be a problem if your family has to live in the painted room and breathe in these toxic compounds.

But there are ways to get rid of the fumes and do it quickly.


And if you’re just painted follow these tips to get rid of paint smell.


  • It’s possible to buy paint which contains little or no VOC’s and if you’re concerned about fumes ask your hardware store about this.
  • When painting keep paint covered as much as possible. Don’t add to the smell by leaving buckets open. Cover brushes with plastic bags when they’re not being used. And keep paint in disposable containers.
  • Open all your windows and doors to ventilate the room as much as possible. If you can get an exhaust fan place it in the window to help pull the fumes out. Also turn the thermostat down, as heat aggravates the chemicals and makes the smell worse.
  • You can also use peppermint or vanilla extract. Put a few drops on cotton balls and place them around the room. Extract can also be added to your paint to mask the smell. Just put a few drops into every paint bucket.
  • Coffee beans, crushed charcoal and cut up onions also work to remove the smell. Place any one of these things in bowls around the room and leave for a day or two.
  • You can light candles and leave them around the room. This will burn away the flammable components in the paint solvent and leave the room with a fresh, clean smell.
  • An air purifier with an active carbon filter is also effective in removing VOCs.


Paint fumes are extremely bad for your health. Which is why you should never sleep or live in a room that has just been painted. But with the tips in this article you can remove them fast and protect yourself.

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