First Select the Paint
The first step to naturally tinting a white semi-gloss paint with natural products is to get the paint. Choose a water based indoor paint for this project, as oil paints tend to be harder to mix anything with. You may also want to look for a green or eco-friendly paint.
When you have your paint, it's time to think about how you want to tint or color it. There are many natural options for doing this and all of them are easy!
Tiniting With Organic Ingredients
The first option to coloring white paint is by using natural organic ingredients. Think of foods, plants or spices which have a strong color and may even stain your hands. All of these make great tinting agents for paint. Some are stronger than others, and the strength in color depends on what product your use and how much. Here are a few examples:
- Beets- pale mauve to strong burgundy color
- Saffron – cream to burnt orange
- Turmeric- eggshell to goldenrod
- Raspberries – light pink to strong purplish color
- Avocado – light green (too much may produce an oxidized green-brown color)
- Blueberries- pastel to medium blue
- Blackberries – pastel to dark purple
- Dandelion – Light to medium yellow
To use the natural ingredient, blend it with a small amount of water to make a paste. Make sure to blend until the paste is very creamy – no grains or lumps. Seeds from berries may need to be strained out before you reach this stage. Them add the paste to your paint until you get the shade you want. You can even mix and match ingredients to get cutom shades!
Did you know many of these herbs can also be used to make hair dye? For more on all-natural dyes, click here.
Coloring with Natural Pigments
Another way you can naturally color that white paint is with natural pigments. These are made from earth and mineral to create powders and creams with a strong color to them. Usually you will need much less to achieve the color you want with these.
Earth – Using raw pigments means simply using earth, clay and minerals. Again these need to be ground up into a fine powder. You do not necessarily need to make a paste from these, but I like to add a few tablespoons of hot water to dissovle ingredients like clay and make them even more smooth.
Pigment powders – You can also purchase pigment powders from many art supply and eco-friendly stores. These powders are still natural, but are already ground up and ready to use from the store. The colors may be more pure because manufacturer's mine them from specific areas, weed out impurities and mix like-colored pigments so you get a stronger color.
Other natural pigments – Natural pigment paints can also be found in many art supply stores. These are paints much like acrylics in texture and color, but are made of 100% natural pigments. If you are going for a totally natural paint, make sure you look at labels to see if the brand you choose was processed using artificial fillers and solvents.
Image credit: sxc.hu
Natural Food Coloring
Finally, you have the option of using natural food coloring to tint your paints. This works very well if you are going for subdued or pastel colors. Natural food coloring is available in many health food stores or online, and is created using a host of natural ingredients. These ingredients range from food to plants and even bugs!
To get a strong color from these, you would need a lot of color and it would seriously thin your paint. That is why this particular method is good for light and pastel colors.
There are also options for natural paints from various companies. To learn more about natural paints, see this article.