non-toxic materials & supplies for healthy, energy-efficient, water-wise buildings and landscapes
Not sure which natural plaster option is best for you? Read more below about the natural plasters we carry, and contact us if you’d like guidance for choosing the most suitable natural plaster for your project. Interested in a professional installation? We can help with that as well. We are certified installers for the plasters we carry and serve all of Southern CA, and are willing to travel for projects further away that are a good fit.
American Clay’s natural earth plaster products, manufactured in Albuquerque, New Mexico, are a healthy and creative solution for beautiful interiors. Their mission is to bring universal awareness to the value of environmentally conscious products to indoor spaces. Their gorgeous, sustainable clay plasters offer a non-toxic alternative for residential and commercial interior wall coverings and they are unparalleled in quality, health, beauty and value.
Eco-friendly lime finishes designed for natural beauty & healthier home environments. 100% sourced and made in U.S.A.
Natural Hydraulic Lime (NHL) has been produced in Saint Astier, France since 30 BC and produced on an industrial scale since 1851. Not only is Natural Hydraulic Lime an important material in historical preservation and restoration of many buildings worldwide, Saint Astier® Natural Hydraulic Lime is a time-honored product with a modern comeback due to its performance, beauty, and numerous environmental and health qualities.
BENEFITS OF NATURAL PLASTERS
Health. Natural plasters go beyond green. The numerous health qualities of natural plasters make them not just non-toxic and VOC-free, they are among the healthiest wall and ceiling finish options on the planet. Natural plasters, such as the clay and lime plasters we carry, are “breathable”, or vapor permeable to be more accurate. This means they won’t trap moisture behind themselves like cement stucco, synthetic stuccos, and common latex and acrylic paints do. Those “non-breathable”, or non-vapor permeable wall finishes that have become all-too-common around the world can contribute to the growth of moisture-related toxins in buildings such as mildew and black mold, which can cause serious health problems for building occupants, a phenomenon known as Sick Building Syndrome. Not only does the vapor-permeability of both clay and lime plasters help to prevent those moisture-related building and human health problems from occurring in the first place, lime plasters are naturally anti-bacterial, anti-fungal, and anti-viral, due to having a very high pH. Clay plasters are also healthy to have around because they help to purify indoor air quality by clay’s natural ability to remove VOC’s and other harmful toxins and odors from the air… a sort of air filter all around the room, if you will.
Beauty. With visual and tactile qualities that add depth and natural elegance to just about any space, natural plasters are stunningly beautiful. The subtle nuances and variations in color and texture achieved with hand-troweled natural plasters are on a completely different level compared the look and feel of common synthetic household paints and decorative wall finishes. Textural qualities can range from coarse, gritty, and rustic, to super smooth and elegant, and everything in between, with luminous qualities ranging from dead flat to highly polished… even options for natural add-ins like chopped straw, mica, and crushed oyster shell. How about color? From the brightest whites earthly possible, to deep, rich earthen shades, there is an abundance of colors and shades that can be achieved with natural plasters, and unlike with synthetic paints, because the colors achieved with natural plasters are made with natural mineral pigments, the colors won’t fade.
Sustainability. Made with minimally processed natural materials, and the ability to be recycled over and over again, clay and lime plasters have a much smaller carbon footprint/ ecological footprint than synthetic paints and cement stuccos, and excess material and wash-water from working with these clay and lime plasters is non-polluting to our environment. With clay plasters, left over plaster material from installations can be dried out and stored indefinitely, and rehydrated and remixed to be used when needed. Even old clay plasters could be removed for a remodel or demolition, and be remixed with water and be used again, over and over. That’s the ultimate in recyclability and reusability and low embodied carbon. Lime plasters, which are made with natural lime binders that are made from raw limestone, can also be reprocessed to be reused over and over again, something that’s referred to as the Lime Cycle. All in all, with both clay plasters and lime plasters, each have their own unique qualities that make them sustainable and regenerative building material choices that are healthy for our planet.
Versatility. The natural plasters we offer can be applied over a wide variety of substrates, including natural building materials and systems like adobe, cob, strawbale, light straw-clay, hempcrete, existing earth or lime plasters, or over other alternative building systems like SuperAdobe (earthbag) and Faswall, or over industrially produced building materials and systems like brick, concrete, concrete block, cement board, etc. The natural plasters we carry can even be applied over new or previously painted drywall, making them a great green building upgrade for what has become the most common wall material in North America.
Comfort. Natural plasters, and clay plasters in particular, are also especially beneficial for their ability to moderate changes in humidity and make spaces feel more comfortable year-round. They absorb excess humidity from the air when the air is uncomfortably humid, and give that moisture back to the air when humidity levels drop to uncomfortably dry levels, buffering the high and low extremes of humidity levels and making spaces more comfortable and stable for us, our furniture, musical instruments, art, etc.