I'd like to spend today's post discussing an awesome product offered at Green Conscience: American Clay.  Full disclosure: I really dig this product.  The benefits of plastering your walls with American Clay instead of painting them are almost too great to ignore.

To begin with, clay is 100% natural.  That may seem like a given fact, but it's crucial.  Unlike some other wall covering options, clay is non-toxic and VOC free.  The real strength of the product, though, comes in the variety of functions it performs after it is applied.  One of the coolest aspects of American Clay is that it remains an active part of your living space.  Clay acts as a temperature and humidity buffer, and by naturally absorbing and releasing moisture, it helps to regulate and moderate environmental changes in any room. For this reason, it is especially effective in bathrooms and other high-humidity applications. Walls finished with clay plaster are warm to the touch in winter, and also cool in the summer.

One of the more subtle aspects of American Clay is its ability to effect the ionization of a room in which it is installed.  This is a particularly interesting quality, especially in light of the fact that most people are surrounded daily by electronic devices that generate positive ions and disruptive electromagnetic effects. 

As WebMD points out, ions are molecules that have gained or lost an electric charge. Naturally generated, there is sound science proving that negative ions have a host of health and mood-related benefits for humans.  One in three people are sensitive to the effects of negative ions, which can increase the flow of oxygen to the brain, resulting in heightened awareness and increased mental acuity.  Negative ions have been shown by a Columbia University study to lower levels of depression as much as anti-depressants, and they may also protect against airborne germs, resulting in less irritation from inhaled particulates. 

American Clay, like any unsealed clay plaster, naturally generates negative ions.  This serves to mitigate the effects of electronic devices and contributes not only to the general well-being and health of a room's occupants, but also fosters a calming, relaxing environment.

Karen offers American Clay in four different finishes, and a vast array of colors to suit any application.  Naturally resistant to mold and fungus, clay plaster can be applied over existing drywall, plaster, concrete, or even adobe.  Green Conscience offers workshops on how to apply clay plaster, and locally, William and Susan Sykela at Higher Standard have quite a bit of experience installing American Clay.  Stop by the store to check out all of the available options, or check out the application workshop (The next one is happening Thursday, July 26th).  If you're keen on an alternative, healthy way to spruce up a living space, you probably won't be disappointed that you did.


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