If you love art, I have some bad news: you’re going to hate resin-based art. Resin is not only bad for the environment, but it’s also bad for the soul.
It fills people with joy and possibility in all of the wrong ways, and today I’m going to explain why.
One thing we all know is that a lot of people want to succeed in art these days. However, what they don’t realize is that there’s good success the kind where you work hard and feel accomplished and there’s a bad success, which only makes you happy in the short term before leaving you completely unsatisfied with your life.
This second form of success can be extremely harmful if it means you’ve stopped doing what really matters to you.
If you’re using resin as your artistic medium just because it will make a lot of money or win awards for its uniqueness, then it’s time for a wake-up call: resin artwork might seem like a good idea because of how much attention it gets in galleries and online, but as an artist, I beg you not to let this be any sort of goal!
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Is resin bad for the earth?
As you may have guessed, the answer is a resounding yes. Resin art is made from resin, which is a polymer, and polymers are made from petroleum.
Petroleum is not biodegradable and comes from a non-renewable resource: our Earth.
Resin can be dangerous for artists to use as well. The fumes that come off of resin can cause asthma or other respiratory problems.
The best way to protect yourself from these fumes is to set up your workspace in a well-ventilated area where there’s no chance of breathing in the fumes at all.
What are the dangers of using resin?
The main dangers of working with resin are actually quite simple to avoid. The first and most important is the toxicity of epoxy resin.
Because it is made from chemicals, if you breathe in the fumes, you will run into problems. The easy way to deal with this is to make sure you work in a well-ventilated room when using the resin, both while mixing and while pouring it into molds or other containers.
If you are going to be curing (making rock hard) a large amount of epoxy at once, then it’s also a good idea to wear a respirator as an additional precaution.
In addition, because epoxy art uses pigments and dyes for coloration, these can sometimes present additional hazards depending on what type of pigment or dye is used; however, almost all of these do provide safety information on their product labels that will help guide your use and precautions.
Why is epoxy resin bad?
Resin is bad for a whole bunch of reasons, and not just because it’s the new big thing. In fact, if you’re reading this article, it’s safe to say that you already know why resin art products are bad for the environment and are looking for more information about why resin is bad in general.
So here are five reasons why epoxy resin can be harmful:
- Epoxy resin is flammable
- Epoxy resin contains chemicals that can be harmful to humans
- Epoxy resin is not biodegradable
- Epoxy resin can be toxic if inhaled or ingested
- Epoxy resin can be flammable if it is not stored properly
Is resin environmentally friendly?
Nope. Resin is not environmentally friendly. The resin itself is not recyclable or biodegradable. If you want to use it responsibly, you will need to throw away a lot of plastic. That’s the opposite of being environmentally friendly!
It is also toxic and unhealthy to breathe in resin fumes. Resin can be toxic if ingested and cause skin irritation if touched directly, so you should always wear gloves and keep your resin far away from anything edible (or at least label it as something that shouldn’t be consumed).
To keep yourself safe, wear gloves when working with resin as well as a respirator or mask for prolonged periods of time when working with epoxy resins, particularly those that have strong smells such as acetone fumes from acetone based epoxies such as TotalBoat’s Thixo Flex.
Are resins toxic?
Resins are toxic to humans. The chemicals in resins can cause skin irritation, respiratory problems, and a range of other health issues.
It is imperative that you wear gloves and a mask when making resin art. Make sure your workspace is well ventilated too!
The toxicity of resins makes them bad for the environment as well. Resin art is not environmentally friendly because it contains chemicals that are harmful to living things, and because resin itself is not biodegradable or compostable.
Resin art is no better than plastic and should be avoided if you care about the environment (which you should!).
Is resin better than plastic?
Resin is not better than plastic! It’s a type of plastic. It’s made from petroleum, which is not biodegradable, recyclable, reusable, or renewable.
Some artisanal forms are made with plant-based derivatives, but those are still not compostable (they still have “synthetic components that can be harmful to the soil and ultimately the plant life it grew from”).
Is Craft resin toxic?
We’re all looking for ways to live more ecologically friendly lives, but the industries of art and craft have lagged behind in the realm of sustainability.
Even those who are part of this community may not be aware that they are contributing to the problem when they use epoxy resin.
Many artists would tell you that epoxy resin is safe and environmentally friendly because it’s biodegradable and non-toxic—but this isn’t quite true.
It’s biodegradable only as long as it’s kept in its original form. As soon as it hardens, it becomes a plastic, which contains all the same harmful chemicals and toxins found in other plastics.
So even though some resins are made from corn or almond oil and that sounds nice enough the truth is the finished product is pretty similar to any plastic you’d find on a beach or floating in a landfill somewhere.
Is ArtResin safe to use?
There’s no question that ArtResin is a raw material that should be handled with care. That said, the majority of users have no problem using it.
It’s not toxic and it doesn’t cause allergic reactions when exposed to skin for long periods of time like epoxy does (if you’re wondering why your arm looks like an articulated skeleton, look up “epoxy allergy”).
ArtResin is safe to use in a variety of applications, but there are some guidelines that you need to follow to ensure that you don’t end up with a ruined piece of art.
The resin is completely odorless, making it difficult to tell if there are any fumes leaking out of the syringe into your workspace.
When working with resins in small quantities, use ventilation equipment (i.e., exhaust fans). When working with larger quantities (i.e., 1 pound or more), wear safety glasses and gloves (the resin gets hot!).
Never pour resin directly onto bare skin it can burn through light clothing and get into your eyes very quickly! This is especially bad if you’re working without proper ventilation; the fumes from burning resins can cause permanent eye damage within minutes.
Resin art is such a negatively-charged experience for the artist and the planet that it’s hard to see its value. While it certainly is shiny and can give off a cool effect, there are far more eco-friendly and safer ways to get similar results.
If you want a crystal clear, glass-like finish on your work, try using an epoxy resin or finishing varnish instead.
If you don’t want to spend any money at all, there are even methods of achieving an admirable sheen with household products like nail polish or coconut oil!
You will be able to rest easy knowing that these materials won’t cause irreversible damage to your health or our planet.