How to Work With Epoxy Resin Safely
Making resin craft is always having a lot of fun but you would better figure out the resin and safety problem before you continue to epoxy or resin. There are a few frequently asked questions and tips we're going to list in the following passage.
Is Resin Toxic to Breathe?
Epoxy and resin are chemicals, and still have certain things in it that can react with our bodies. They can be poisonous if breathed in. Keep in mind that even when the resin is no-VOC(volatile organic compounds), it may still contain other harmful chemicals. No-VOCs doesn't mean it's not toxic, and still you can't smell the epoxy directly.
What happens if you inhale resin?
If you're always exposed to the epoxy or resin, you may be suffering from multiple chemical sensitivity. which includes headache, fatigue, dizziness, nausea, congestion, itching, sneezing, sore throat, chest pain, etc. Check out this video to learn more.
Is resin still toxic after curing?
If you don't wait until this is fully cured, then there's still a chemical reaction happening within the material. If you let it cure and demold, it's non-toxic. After demolding, you might be sanding and cutting up your epoxy project. In this situation, there are little particles. That's what we called atomizing the resin and that's something that you can inhale. In this case, you have to get your glasses and respirator on.
Is resin food safe once cured?
Many people ask if epoxy is food safe. The answer is a bit more complicated than a simple yes/no. First, we have to know even if certain manufacturers epoxy is possible to be food-safe once cured, but it's up to you to properly measure, pour, mix and cure the epoxy. If we measure the ratios incorrectly, or we don't mix fully or the epoxy doesn't cure correctly, then it's not food safe.
Also, adding colouring in the form of micas, pastes inks etc can immediately change the chemical composition of the epoxy to where an epoxy labelled food safe will no longer be so. Unless you are using the labelled food-safe product on its own. So each individual application would have to be assessed.
How do you get resin off your hands?
Stay away from cleaning with solvents like bar salt or vinegar because these actually break down the resin and make it easier to absorb into the skin! Here's a good trick: take a pinch of seeds with some soap and DRY rub your hands. This acts as an exfoliant. Then wash with water and run away happily. If you didn't have seeds anywhere close, try with pepper. IT WORKS ABSOLUTELY FINE!
How can I work safely with resin?
Work in a well-ventilated area when using epoxy resin. If you have a garage or a shed, which are the ideal places to apply your epoxy, you must keep the garage door, hatchway, and any windows open. Avoid working with epoxy in a place where people live and breathe even if it's well-ventilated because great ventilation just helps dissipate.
Please note the resin won't cure in really cold weather or damp wet weather if you have your windows open.
Use Protective Equipment
To prevent skin and eye irritation, use protective equipment to stay covered. This includes nitrile gloves, safety goggles, a long-sleeved shirt and pants, and a respirator or barrier mask when using epoxy.
IMPORTANT: Don't use reusable gloves where the epoxy continues to seep into them or get onto them, and then out of nowhere, you don't know what's cured or not cured, and then you've got epoxy on your skin.
After working with epoxy, remove all contaminated clothing. Thoroughly wash your hands and skin with soap and hot water or with a commercial hand cleaner. Also, clean your fingernails and nail beds, as epoxy can hide here easily.