Cleaning your eyeglasses regularly is the most effective way to keep them in good condition. This helps prevent scratches, smudges, grime on the lens, and other damages.
However, learning how to clean eyeglasses properly is essential for the best results.
How To Clean Glasses: Step-By-Step
Follow these eight steps to clean your eyeglass lenses and frames without damaging the lenses. These tips will also help you keep your safety glasses, sunglasses, and sports eyewear in excellent condition.
1. Wash and Dry Your Hands
Before cleaning your eyewear, ensure that your hands are clean. Remove dirt, grime, lotion, or anything else that could affect your lenses. Use a dishwashing liquid or lotion-free soap and a clean, lint-free towel to wash your hands.
2. Rinse Your Eyewear
Rinse your eyeglasses under a stream of lukewarm water from the tap. This helps wash away any dust and other debris that can scratch your lenses.
Don’t use hot water. This can damage some eyewear lens coatings.
3. Apply Dishwashing Liquid to Your Eyewear
Apply a small amount of lotion-free soap or dishwashing liquid to each lens of your glasses. Most dishwashing solutions are very concentrated, so only use a small drop.
4. Clean the Lenses
Gently clean both sides of the lens and the entire eyeglasses frame for a few seconds. Ensure that you clean each part carefully. This includes the nose pads and the ends of the temples that sit behind your ears.
Don’t forget to clean the part where the edge of the lenses meets the frame. This is where dust, debris, and oils gather easily.
5. Rinse the Lenses
Wash both sides of the frame and the lenses thoroughly. Be sure to wash away all traces of soap as well. Otherwise, the glasses will be smeared when you dry them.
6. Gently Shake the Eyeglasses
Gently shaking the eyeglasses can remove most of the water from the lenses. After doing this, check the glasses to ensure they’re clean.
7. Dry the Lenses
Thoroughly dry the eyeglasses lenses with a fresh, lint-free cleaning cloth or towel. Make sure the clean cloth hasn’t been laundered with fabric softener or a dryer sheet. These solutions can smear or smudge eyewear lenses.
8. Inspect the Lenses
Inspect the lenses of the eyeglasses. If there are still some streaks, smudges, or grime, remove them with a clean microfiber lens cloth.
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What Not To Do When Cleaning Eyeglasses
There are plenty of materials you shouldn’t use when cleaning your eyeglasses. These include:
1. Paper Towels
Don’t use paper towels, tissues, or toilet paper to clean your eyeglasses. This material can scratch or smudge your lenses. They can also leave lint on the glasses.
2. Hot Water
Hot water can damage some lens coatings. The heat can cause the lens coating to warp or bubble.
3. Acetone Products
Never clean eyeglasses with products containing acetone, like nail polish remover. Acetone is damaging to both lenses and plastic frames, especially if left on the surface for too long.
Many people make the mistake of using saliva to lubricate eyeglasses lenses. However, this involves coating your lenses with germs from your mouth. This bacteria can then multiply.
Saliva can also make a smudge on eyeglasses look worse.
Don’t use your clothing, such as your shirttail, to clean your eyeglasses. Many materials in clothing can scratch your lenses.
6. Household Cleaners
Don’t use household glass or surface cleaning solutions to clean your eyewear. These formulas contain ingredients that can damage lenses and coatings.
Cleaning Supplies You Need for Cleaning Glasses
1. Microfiber Cloth or Lint-Free Towel
Microfiber cloths work well for cleaning eyeglasses. The material dries eyeglass lenses effectively and collects oils to prevent smearing.
You should also clean these cloths regularly since they trap grime and debris. Hand-wash the towel using lotion-free dishwashing liquid and clean water. Then, let the cloth air dry.
2. Lukewarm Tap Water
Always use warm or lukewarm tap water. Hot water can damage some lens coatings.
3. Safe Cleaning Solution or Dish Soap
Use a safe dishwashing liquid or a mild soap. If your lenses have an anti-reflective coating, ensure the eyeglass cleaner you use is suitable for AR lenses.
Is Professional Cleaning Necessary?
It's not always necessary to have your eyeglasses professionally cleaned. This is especially true if your eyeglasses only have minor smudges.
However, if you’re unsure how to clean your eyeglasses properly, it’s best to take them to a professional. Opticians have the right tools and cleaning solutions to clean your glasses safely. They can also check for any damage or scratches on the lenses.
How to Store Eyeglasses Properly
Aside from cleaning your glasses regularly, it’s also important to store them properly.
When not in use, always keep your glasses in a protective case. This will help protect the lenses from scratches and dirt. Make sure the case is clean and dry before putting away your glasses.
Never leave your glasses on your head or your car's dashboard, as this can cause damage.
Finally, never leave your glasses in direct sunlight because this can cause the lenses to warp or discolor.
Cleaning your glasses is an important part of maintaining them. Following the proper steps and using the right supplies can help keep your glasses looking their best. If needed, take your glasses to a professional for cleaning and repair.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
How often should I clean my glasses?
It’s recommended to clean your glasses at least once a week. If you wear them daily, you may need to clean them more frequently.
Can I use regular soap or detergent to clean my glasses?
No, it’s best to avoid using regular soap or detergent as they can contain harsh chemicals that can damage the lenses. Instead, use a mild dishwashing liquid or a safe cleaning solution specifically designed for eyeglasses.
How do I remove scratches from glasses?
It can be difficult to remove scratches from glasses. If the scratches are minor, you may be able to buff them out with a microfiber cloth. However, if the scratches are deep or severe, it’s best to take your glasses to an optician for professional repair.
Do transition and blue-light-blocking lenses need special cleaning?
Yes, transition and blue-light-blocking lenses need to be cleaned with a special cleaner designed for these lenses.
In this article
Best Places to Buy Glasses
Warby Parker has stylish, high-quality frames at affordable prices.
Liingo Eyewear is another great option to buy glasses online.
Best on a Budget
EyeBuyDirect has a wide variety of budget frames starting at $6.
Best Places to Buy Contacts
1-800 Contacts is our #1 recommendation to buy contacts online.
GlassesUSA has a huge selection of contacts, glasses, & sunglasses.