What is PEVA? Is It Safe And What Is It In?

In Around the Home by Aaron Green6 Comments


what is pevaPEVA is a non-chlorinated vinyl that is often used a direct substitute for PVC. PEVA is in many common household items, and it is for this reason that you should educate yourself on how safe it is, and what products in your home may be made from PEVA.

In this article

What is PEVA?

PEVA (polyethylene vinyl acetate) is a non-chlorinated vinyl and is commonly used as a substitute for PVC(polyvinyl chloride) – which is a type of chlorinated vinyl. PVC is a known carcinogen and should generally be avoided where possible.

This material is seen to be a less toxic version of vinyl due to the fact that it is non-chlorinated (contains no chloride). So products manufactured from PEVA is considered to be a healthier alternative to PVC products.

PEVA is used in numerous household items such as:

  • Shower curtains
  • Toys
  • Shoes
  • Cosmetic bags
  • Baby bibs
  • Plastic table coverings
  • Car covers
  • Mattress protectors

Is PEVA Safe?

ethylene vinyl acetate testingThis is where the subject gets a little complicated. If you look at what we know about this type of vinyl now, it can certainly be viewed as a less-toxic alternative to PVC.

So while this may give you some peace of mind when purchasing a product that contains polyethylene vinyl acetate, you need to be aware that it still contains other chemicals that may be dangerous to human health. There are some studies that suggest that PEVA is, in fact, toxic to some living organisms.

The main reason why it is impossible to make a definitive statement on this question is that many of the chemicals are contained in this petrochemical product are yet to be properly tested for adverse affects to human health.

What we do know is that this material is free from phthalates, which are “reasonably anticipated to be a human carcinogen” 

So while little is known about ethylene vinyl acetate toxicity, from the evidence available it does look like PEVA is a less harmful material than PVC.

Our advice regarding products that contain PEVA at the moment is to use them with caution. It is always good practice to be aware of what your products are made of and what adverse affects these materials may have on your health.

PEVA Frequently Asked Questions

Is PEVA safe for babies?

While PEVA is considered to be a less harmful vinyl than PVC, it is probably wise to limit your babies exposure to either of these materials where possible. There are a lot of unknowns associated with chemicals involved in the manufacturing process of PEVA and babies tend to put everything in their mouth. So do be mindful when using products made from any sort of vinyl around babies.

Are PEVA shower curtains safe?

Polyethylene vinyl acetate is considered to be a safe material for shower curtains. Because it is made without chloride, it has no off-gassing like PVC shower curtains do. PEVA shower curtains are waterproof and affordable and I wouldn’t hesitate to use them at my own home at all.

Our recommended shower curtain is the LiBa Shower Curtain.

How do I know if a product contains PVC or PEVA?

Products that contain polyethylene vinyl acetate instead of PVC will generally advertise the fact, due to it being a less toxic alternative. If the product you are considering contains vinyl, but there is no mention of PEVA, then it is highly likely that it is manufactured from PVC instead and should be avoided if possible.

Is PEVA biodegradable or recyclable?

Yes, PEVA is biodegradable and also recyclable.

Pricing last updated on 2018-06-21 at 20:34 / affiliate links - Details

6 Comments on “What is PEVA? Is It Safe And What Is It In?”

  1. Hi! Wanted to ask how to dispose of this properly. Will products made of PEVA biodegrade or is it just like plastic? Asking because I found PEVA ziplock bags and I’m wondering if it’s a more ecofriendly choice. Thanks!

  2. Hi
    i am considering buying a tablecloth for our outdoor table. What material would be the best to buy that is less TOXIC – PEVA or PVC.
    Thank you

    1. Hi Ellie, this is really something you need to ask a doctor. From what I have read, vinyl allergies can be caused by one or many of the different chemicals used to create the product. So without knowing exactly which chemical is responsible for your daughters allergy, it is hard to give a recommendation. Depending on the severity of her allergy, you could always try it and see what happens? But I still suggest you speak to your doctor about this to make sure. – Aaron

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