The Dos and Don'ts of Cleaning Glasses
Though this might sound silly, there is a proper way of cleaning and caring for your glasses. An old stand-by, a huff of breath and a wipe on the bottom of one's shirt is, though convenient, not the best way to get all the dust, grime, and grease off your lenses. Cleaning your glasses doesn't have to be a big production, but there is a right and wrong way of going about it. Here are some pro-tips from your optician.
First, you’ll want to make sure you have the proper materials for cleaning your lenses. A lens spray and a soft microfiber cloth are all you’ll need for a quick wipe. If you are needing a more thorough cleaning, switch the lens spray for a running tap and a touch of Dawn (or any degreasing) dish soap.
Quick Clean: Spray the front and back of each lens and wipe in circular motion to remove dust and debris.
Deep Clean: Turn on your tap to cool. Run your glasses under and put one dot (as small as the bottle opening) of dish soap on each lens. Rub the lenses with your fingers while suds begin to form, then rinse. Dry your frame and blot your lenses (NO RUBBING) with paper towels to remove excess water, then thoroughly dry your lenses with your microfiber cloth.
Extra Deep Clean: Bring your glasses in to us and we will remove your lenses and take your frame for an ultrasonic swim to dislodge any dirt hidden in the grooves. This is also helpful for any buildup on the frame and nosepads from facial oils or makeup.
You might be asking, why all the pomp and circumstance around cleaning glasses? Why is that hot air and shirt method bad? There are a couple of reasons for following a proper cleaning method with your glasses.
Avoid scratched lenses: If you are cleaning with anything other than a soft cloth specifically for glasses, you may be creating micro-abrasions on your lens surface. These tiny scratches can and will, with repeated abuse, lead to large, noticeable, circular scratches. Cleaning dry (no spray) may also create these cuts, since you may be rubbing dirt particles into your lenses. We can always tell if you are a habitual shirt wiper.
Take care of that no-glare treatment: In our office, we prescribe no-glare (anti reflective) treatments for all of our patients. Our most popular no-glare treatment creates a layer that is scratch, glare, oil, and water resistant on the outside of your lenses. This protects the material of the lens from damage. However, if abused, this treatment can become damaged itself. Using sprays or soaps with high levels of alcohol in them will cause the ionically bonded treatment to break down, leaving your lenses more susceptible to scratching and defects. Proper cleaning will prevent this from happening to you.
Make those glasses last: Glasses are an investment; you likely want to get the most wear time out of your glasses as possible. While it is true that as an optician I’d like to see all my patients in a fresh prescription, for some patients its not practical or needed. With proper care and cleaning, your glasses can easily last longer than one year.
By following these tips, you can ensure that you have the most comfortable vision possible for the life of your glasses. Remember, no shirt wiping, always clean wet, and make sure to use a spray without alcohol in it!