Cleaning Your Glasses the Right Way: 7 Steps to Follow
If you wear glasses, you know how quickly a crystal-clear lens can get smudged with fingerprints, hair spray, make up, or even perfume. As you go throughout your day, you eventually notice that you aren’t seeing things as clearly as you should be – plus, the residue left on your lenses could actually be causing lens damage.
If you can’t see clearly through your lenses, you’re more likely to have an accident. Also, taking care of your glasses will make them last longer by helping any coatings stay intact and preventing any scratches. It’s important to keep your glasses clean. That said, how do you know if you’re cleaning them the right way?
Cleaning the Wrong Way Can Damage Your Lenses
You can actually cause significant damage to your lenses if you clean them with the wrong cloth or use the wrong cleaner.
The most commonly caused damage associated with incorrect cleaning is scratched lenses. To help prevent this, you should never clean your lenses when they’re dry. Any piece of dust or debris can easily cause scratching if you just start dry buffing your lenses. Also, don’t use any paper products to clean them. Paper towels, toilet paper, and napkins all have rough surfaces that can cause problems.
You also need to be wary of what cleaning solution you’re using. Most lenses have special coatings that can be ruined if the wrong kind is used. Avoid ammonia, bleach, vinegar, and window cleaner as they’re all too harsh to use on your lenses. You should also never spit on your glasses.
Glass vs. Plastic Lenses
The right way to clean your lenses depends on the type of lenses you have.
Glass lenses can give really clear vision and are really inexpensive, but they aren’t used very often anymore because they’re heavy and can cause serious damage if they break.
Most people now have lenses made of plastic, polycarbonate, or high index plastics. These are thinner, lighter, and effectively block up to 100% of UV light. They also often have special anti-glare or anti-reflective properties that you will have to consider when cleaning.
Gathering Your Tools and Supplies
If you have glass lenses, you don’t have as much to worry about. While glass can still get damaged, there aren’t any special coatings to be concerned with. It’s also a lot more difficult to scratch glass than it is to scratch plastic. Glass lenses just aren’t as delicate.
Remember, you should never clean your lenses when they’re dry. That said, when it comes to lens cleaner, you have several options. Believe it or not, you can use water. Tap water is okay, but purified or distilled water is better. After rinsing with water, you can use simple dishwashing soap, or you can buy a special cleaner or even make your own.
The ingredients in some of the best-selling eyeglasses cleaner are pretty simple: isopropyl alcohol and water. You can easily make a homemade eyeglass cleaner that’s just as effective using the same ingredients. An easy recipe is to mix one part isopropyl alcohol to two parts water. Just add them to a spray bottle, shake to mix them together, and you’re ready to go. You can also use one part witch hazel to one part water. Some recipes include a drop of soap.
You will also need something to wipe off your glasses, like a microfiber cloth or a cotton towel that was not washed in fabric softener.
7 Steps to Cleaning Your Glasses
You can use these steps to clean any kind of glasses – sunglasses, reading glasses, even safety glasses. This is the best way to make sure your lenses and frames are clean and free of debris so they will last a long time.
While lens cleaners are great to keep lenses clean, you should consider using this method occasionally in order to make sure your frames are clean as well.
2. Rinse your glasses. Make sure the water is lukewarm. If the water is too hot, you risk damaging the coating on the lenses. Rinsing your lenses before you do anything else will help prevent scratching.
3. Drop a small amount of dish soap on each lens. Remember, you only need a small amount. Don’t use a dish soap that has hand lotion in it as this could potentially damage the coating and smudge your lenses even more. Gently rub the lenses and the frames.
4. Rub the lenses and frames for a few seconds. Make sure you get to every part of the frame including hinges, nose pads, or ear grips.
5. Rinse, making sure you don’t leave any soap behind.
6. Dry your glasses with a clean microfiber cloth or cotton towel.
7. If you wish, use your eyeglasses cleaner to make sure your lenses are clear.
An Important List of What Not to Do
To keep your glasses clean and your lenses scratch free, here are some things you shouldn’t do when cleaning your glasses:
· Don’t use your clothes to clean your lenses.
· Don’t use paper towels, toilet paper, or napkins to clean your lenses.
· Don’t spit or use saliva on your lenses.
· Don’t use household glass cleaner because it could damage the coating on your lenses.
Sometimes, it doesn’t matter how careful you are, your lenses will get scratched. If this happens, don’t attempt to buff out the scratches because this will only make them worse.