You may have seen the statement ‘xylene-free’ a lot when purchasing your whiteboard pens, but what does it mean? And why does it matter?
Quite simply, xylene is a solvent. It is a synthetic chemical produced from petroleum and coal tar, that is commonly used in the printing, rubber and leather industries.
Doesn’t sound good already, does it?
Breathing lots of vapours from products such as paint and varnish can expose you to xylene, which is then rapidly absorbed by your lungs. This is then passed into your blood soon after entering the body.
Xylene can also stay in the air until it is broken down by sunlight and other chemicals.
Short term exposure to high levels of xylene can cause headaches, confusion and dizziness, as well as more serious symptoms such as skin, eyes, nose and throat irritation, breathing difficulty, impaired memory and stomach discomfort.
When choosing your whiteboard pens, it’s beneficial to choose pens that are xylene-free, especially if they will be used in areas that are not well ventilated, around children, or in medical settings where there may be individuals with weaker immune systems.