House Paint for Taiwan

We’re remodeling our new house in Taipei and will soon paint the interior.

My wife feels very strongly that we must use a good, enviro-friendly (our interior household environment, not so much the rest of the world), no-odor paint, even if it costs more. I googled and found, in the US anyway, there are a bunch of eco-friendly, low-odor paints, free of VOCs (volatile organic compounds) such as:

  • American Pride, interior flat latex
  • Kelly Moore, Enviro-Cote
  • Home Depot, FreshAire
  • Duron, Genesis odor-free interior acrylic latex finishes
  • Devoe, Wonder Pure

Does anyone know if eco-friendly, low-odor, VOC-free interior house paints are available in Taiwan?

Obviously, the paint must be suitable for Taiwan’s dank, cold, interior cement walls and holding up in this humid climate.

Can you recommend any such paints and tell me where to find them?

I know Hola B&Q might be able to answer my question (if I could speak mandarin), but I have more faith in you.

Thanks. :bow:

MT – we used non-VOC paint for our office renovation and also in the homes of both myself and Eiger Nathan. At home, the brand was a Japanese one available in B&Q and also among commercial painters. The upsides of course is that the house is not stinkin’ with chemicals being released, although there is a tradeoff in that the paint appears to show marks a little more easily and the color options are often a bit more limited.

I’ve noticed that Japanese have been using ZEOLITE, 珪藻土(gui1zao3tu3) on painting the walls.

It’s all natural and eco-friendly. It absorbs the humidity and odor, too.

You can learn more about it on wiki here:

Or, you can show the following blogs and webpages to your wife to read in Chinese: … d=426&sc=1 … yid=528084

I think this company imports it:

And here’s more info about it:

The paint may be more expensive than many other ones you can find in Taiwan, but in the long run, I think it’ll be worthwhile.

Now I just need to have a house then I can paint the walls. :sunglasses:

I used Dulux to paint the interior of my house and it’s holding up fine. It can be bought at most of the paint shops like ‘Nippon’ and the likes. I don’t know about Homebox or BNQ, but I can’t see why they won’t stock it.

Much more expensive than the other paints, but worth the extra money IMO.

More info here: … goryId=340

Thanks for the replies. If it were up to me, I wouldn’t shell out the extra (considerable, I believe) bucks for no/low odor paint. I’d just do as I always used to do. Open the windows while painting and wait a week or a month or whatever until the smell subsides. I never found it that offensive. In fact, in a way it’s a nice reminder that all is clean and tidy. But the wife demands it, so I know better than to even question the need for a moment. Instead, it’s simply a question of which one.

We went to Hola B&Q today and I saw they have the Nippon “All-In-One Odourless” which seemed incredibly expensive and Dulux “Fresh Air” that I think was cheaper (which I therefore favor).

But there was no info in English there stating how many VOCs/liter each product has. I believe that’s what really matters. All the rest is mere puffery (one sales guy told us the Dulux paint has zero VOCs, but I understand that’s impossible).

I also searched online just now and Dulux doesn’t seem to have any English info about their FreshAir paint. I wonder if that’s produced/marketed for Taiwan. I couldn’t find it on their US website.

The Dulux “Fresh Air” paint, incidentally, doesn’t say in English anything about being odorless or low-VOC, but they do claim it incorporates bamboo charcoal to help purify the air, or something like that (I saw the picture of bamboo and my wife explained), which sounds like complete BS to me. Sounds like a deceptive marketing ploy targeting naive Asians, but I could be wrong (which is why I’m trying in vain to find a description of that paint in English).

Good old-fashioned whitewash has zero volatile organic compounds, as it has zero organic compounds of any sort.

You could get Tom Sawyer and his friends to come and paint for you. Just give him an apple.

What colors have people used to paint the interior of their houses?

Back home I painted my house and did the entire interior a very, very light off-white – “Navajo White” – (just a drop of tan in each bucket) and the ceilings a bright white. I think that’s pretty traditional (and perhaps boring, some might feel).

So now I’d like to loosen up a little and consider some other colors, not just for the walls but possibly for the ceilings, but I’ve been using Dulux’s pretty good virtual room painting tool ( and very few alternatives appeal to me. Any color would have to be very pale, I feel, but . . . .

greens look a little like a school, hospital, jail or mental hospital
blues look a little, well, gay
same for purple
yellow looks too damned chipper and cheery
orange? it’s a house, not a pumpkin
red/pink, no thanks

There are a few hues that might work, but it really does seem Navajo White is hte safest bet.

I also learned a lesson on the exterior of my house back in the states, when I decided not to paint it a boring grey, but to use a more cheerful light blue instead. At least it looked light and mild on the tiny chip, but once I painted a whole wall I realized, holy shit that thing is bright. A couple people told me they liked it, but some neighbors were shocked. I ended up painting over it with grey. Lessons learned: (a) you really can’t tell the color from a miniscule chip, (b) it will look much brighter and bolder when you actually apply it, and © it can make sense to buy a small can first to try it out before purchasing 20 gallons.

Anyway, have any of you used other than white and been happy with your decision?

Can you share any pics?


We painted our house with Dulux paint. We used orange, red, brown, and dark green. If I could work out how to upload pictures, I would post some for you to see. Our house is 100% wood, not a piece of concrete in it, so I don’t know how it works on that surface. My husband had to put on several coats of the red. After we finished, my dad told us that Dulux has a better range than we used, and if we had been advised to use it, we could have saved ourselves a lot of effort.

Avoid Rainbow Paint, Bai Li paint, and locally made oil-based paints. Water-based paints generally appear to be safe:

Some brands of paint in Taiwan have been found to contain unacceptable levels of toxins.

[quote]The Consumers’ Foundation and the Bureau of Standards, Metrology and Inspection yesterday said that two brands of paint on the market contain high levels of volatile organic compounds and could cause health and environmental problems.

The bureau yesterday ordered the manufacturers of the two toxic paint products — [color=#FF0040]Rainbow Paint and Bai Li Paints[/color] — to immediately recall the products and take them off the shelves or face repeated fines of up to NT$200,000 (US$6,358).

The consumer rights watchdog said that tests conducted on 25 brands of paint currently sold in the country showed that all 17 brands of water-based paints passed safety standards.

It also found that two out of the eight brands of oil-based paints were found to contain volatile organic compounds as high as 29 percent above the maximum allowable level of 450g/liter set by the Chinese National Standard (CNS) 15080, said Yeh Shin-cheng (葉欣誠), an inspector at the foundation

A little late on this one but do NOT under any circumstances use “Great Wall” brand paint…it will drive you out of your house for weeks with the smell. God knows how many brain cells my housemate and I lost on that deal. :astonished: (Probably more than either of us could afford… :smiley: )

We recently did the kid’s bedroom (yes, MT, pale blue with a dark blue ceiling, but my son isn’t teh ghey at all – pink for a girl, blue for a boy. Jeez, don’t you know ANYTHING?). Dulux of some kind. Just the normal regular kind from B&Q. It had no discernible smell at all, as far as I remember, even before it had dried.