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Physical Danger

Paint can be dangerous. Oil paint is natural and non-toxic. The acrylic polymer emulsion used to bind acrylic paint, however, can be somewhat toxic. Don't eat it. There are particular colors that have toxic substances such as genuine vermillion, genuine Naples yellow, tin yellow, and flake white. Lead pigments are also not good for you. Make sure that you use them in an area with plenty of ventilation and again, don't eat them.

To be sure that you do not ingest paint, do not drink or eat while painting. Do not stick a paintbrush in your mouth. Obviously, keep pets away from your paints. Some people use mineral spirits, denatured alcohol, or turpentine when they use oils. These solvents are flammable. Avoid using them next to your stove or a flame. Shmoop knows this may cut into the romantic images of painting by candlelight, but safety comes first. Keep open containers with solvents away from any flames. Pretty easy. Painting is as dangerous as cleaning the bathroom. You'll use some chemicals, but as long as you don't taste the toilet bowel cleaner you'll be fine.

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