Health & Safety
QoR Watercolors conform to ASTM D 4236, which means they have been certified in a program of toxicological review to contain no material in sufficient quantity to be toxic or injurious to health.
QoR is formulated with a synthetic binder which is supplied under the trade name Aquazol® (CAS# 25805-17-8). Aquazol has been widely adopted for use as a consolidant in the field of art conservation, not only for its archival attributes, but also because it is free of recognized health hazards. Aquazol is FDA approved as an "in-direct food additive".
This resource is provided to support you in obtaining environmental, health and safety information regarding QoR products in particular, as well as general advice on safe use of art materials, waste disposal and environmental impact. We also provide links to other information that we have found helpful. If you don't find what you need, please contact us.
Because it is inherently unhealthy to inhale spray mists of any kind, we recommend, at minimum, the use of a NIOSH approved disposable dust and mist respirator. Avoid cheaper paper masks that are not labeled with a "NIOSH" approval as they will be less likely to fit adequately or trap particulates as well. Better would be the use of a NIOSH approved half-mask rubber or silicone respirator, fitted with "P-100" cartridges, which signifies they are engineered to capture the finest dust and mists. We use silicone 6000 series respirators, made by 3M in our shop, and find them to be quite comfortable. They also fit much better than disposable paper respirators. These are available from safety supply houses, such as Northern Safety. Bear in mind that in OSHA's opinion, you should get medical clearance to wear a respirator.
QoR and Animal Testing & Ingredients
Most QoR products do not contain animal products. However, Ivory Black contains PBk9, a pigment made from carbonized cattle bones. We do not test our products on animals. However, many of the raw materials we use have been tested on animals to conform with regulations requiring the potential toxicity of chemical substances be determined to help safeguard consumers and the environment. The good news is that Europe leads the world in requiring that companies make data available to prevent duplicate testing. Because we operate in the global marketplace, our supply chain is positively impacted by this change and we support this philosophy over historical practices.
Biocide Skin Reaction Warning
If untreated, water-based products provide an environment for growth of micro-organisms which can both impair the product and cause adverse health effects. Water-based artists' materials therefore contain biocides as preservatives, including (but not exclusively) those from the family of chemicals known as izothiazolinones. Biocides can cause allergic skin reactions in individuals who are already sensitized to them, even at levels below current legal thresholds for warnings on the label. People who know they suffer from such allergies should exercise care and take suitable precautions when handling any water-based art material or other product.
Body Painting Warning
No artist paint, including QoR, should be used for body painting. Body painting is a cosmetic application and it is necessary to use properly labeled and formulated cosmetic paints. They will say "body paint" on the label and list their ingredients. Cosmetic manufacturers operate under entirely different requirements in terms of testing, sanitation and safety. In the United States, these products are regulated by the FDA (Food and Drug Administration) and Artist Paints are regulated by the Consumer Product Safety Commission.