A siccative: what is it? What use? How to use it?

Have you heard of this term before? What do you think is a siccative? A small tropical bird, a way of conjugation? What is behind this term? What is it for ? And especially how do you use it? Here is some clarification on the subject.

What is the definition of the word “siccative”?

It is an adjective which simply means “which activates drying”. As for desiccation, it is the removal of moisture from any body. Moisture can be removed from gas, fabric or soil naturally or even artificially. A siccative therefore dries more quickly and accelerates the desiccation. The siccatives can be oils, varnishes, or even drugs. Some medical products are siccatives in that they dry out and can heal faster. The siccatives are mainly adjuvants which added to inks, paints, oils or varnishes accelerate setting, hardening, drying.

What is the use of a siccative?

A drier can be used in DIY, especially in painting when you want to dry quickly. Since a siccative has the particularity of drying the colors in which they are mixed in a short time, so that they are used to pass tiles, objects, walls to the siccative. From a drying which can take up to several weeks, one can pass to a drying which is done in a few hours, thanks to a drier. If you use certain oils such as linseed oil, without a siccative, it can take three to seven days to dry. Too long for a daily life where the pace is always faster. So if you plan to cover furniture, floors, windows or even tool handles, consider using a drier.

How to use a siccative?

Dryers are mainly found in DIY stores, whether in independent stores or in supermarkets. You must use it very precisely and sparingly. It is best to follow the directions noted on the products you are using. It goes without saying that you must protect yourself with a mask and wash your hands well before and after use.

Is the drier toxic?

Some siccatives are. Previously, lead was used a lot as a drier, which is a heavy metal. Fertility problems or problems with fetuses have been observed due to siccatives. Many have been banned. Of course, do not handle siccatives with children. Their ingestion can have serious consequences. However, many innovations have emerged in order to eliminate this risk. Currently, most siccatives are incorporated into oils, paints or varnishes. Some oils like linseed oils are still sold with separate siccatives: it’s up to you to integrate them and mix them with the oil.