- Certain arts and crafts supplies may contain toxic materials; inhalation, ingestion and skin contact may present a health risk.
- Certain solvent-based products may be flammable.
- Certain products contain heavy metals that cause hazardous emissions from waste-to-energy facilities.
- Know the contents of the materials you use; ask your supplier for a Material Safety Data Sheet or hotline for the product.
- Look for warning label on the product. Art materials should be non-toxic if the manufacturer has appropriately labeled the product AP (approved product), CP (certified product), or HL (health label).
- Use with caution, wear goggles and/or rubber gloves if needed.
- Provide fresh air to your work area and wear appropriate mask, if needed.
- Avoid procedures that create dust. Use wet sanding or vacuum equipment to minimize dust levels.
- Clean up wet spills with absorbent (kitty litter, vermiculite or rags). Keep cleanup materials in closed metal containers and away from heat sources to prevent spontaneous combustion.
- Reduce hazards during mixing of clay, sanding, and glazing by using exhaust ventilation, such as a spray booth.
- Use brushing or dipping methods when possible rather than spraying or airbrushing.
- Use up products such as glues, adhesives, and solvents according to directions.
- If you have no further use for the product and it is in usable condition, try to give it away to someone who has a use for it.
- Do not dispose of toxic art and craft supplies down the drain
Aerosol Containers (empty or partially full):
- See: Aerosol Products
Empty Non-Aerosol Containers and Hardened or Solid Non-Toxic Products:
- Dispose of these in the trash.
Liquid Non-Toxic Products:
- Evaporate or absorb liquid with cat litter or other absorbent and dispose in trash.
- Leftover paints containing toxics, such as cadmium and chromium, should not go in the trash. Overpack in tight container if danger of leaking. Save these materials for a household hazardous waste collection day or take to a commercial hazardous waste facility.
- Dried up toxic paints and adhesives can be put in the trash.
For more information about handling and disposal of arts and craft supplies, visit Arts, Crafts & Theater Safety (ACTS) or call the organization at 212-777-0062.
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