Most people replace their glasses every couple of years, so naturally, they form a special bond with them. After all, they’re so much more than a device helping you see better. They’re an extension of your personality, something which represents your character and your sense of style. Glasses don’t have to be expensive, but the good ones aren’t usually cheap either. You can’t afford to keep replacing them every month, and the hassle of going to the optometry alone isn’t worth it.
Taking care of your glasses is quite essential then. You wash your clothes regularly, so why should your glasses be an exception to the rule? Just like clothes, there are some nuisances to cleaning your glasses. There are strict do’s and don’ts when it comes to cleaning your glasses, the result of which can leave you with spotless glasses or ones which will require replacing immediately or in the near future. Here’s how to get squeaky clean specs and avoid the most common mistakes people usually do.
What to avoid
Most of us are guilty of at least once rubbing our glasses on our shirts or using a paper towel to clean them when in a hurry. The truth is that although these habits seem harmless, and they are when done a handful of times, in the long run, they do more harm than good.
For starters, you want to avoid using your shirt, or any clothing in general, for cleaning your glasses. Fabrics usually contain dust and small debris, especially the ones you’ve been wearing all day long. Dust and debris can leave deep scratches in the glasses themselves, and you can’t get rid of scratches that easily sadly. It’s best practice to stop using your shirt to wipe your glasses off and do it the proper way, which we’ll get to in a minute.
Secondly, do not, under any circumstances, use towels or tissues to clean your glasses. Although fabrics are a gamble in that they might or might not scratch your glasses, paper towels more often than not leave microscopic scratches in the lenses which build up over time. Paper towels are way too coarse and rough for your lenses, so avoid using them at all cost.
Household cleaning products may seem like a great way to clean your specs, but the reality is they’re just not. A lot of cleaning products contain ammonia-based chemicals in their compound which can destroy the protective coating on the lenses. Once that happens, your glasses can be scratched by almost anything.
Lastly, we suggest never trying to remove or buff out a scratch at home as it can only make matters worse. If you want to remove a scratch take your glasses to a professional, such as Midtown Optometry, and we’ll be more than happy to help you out.
How to clean your glasses the right way
The best way to clean your specs is, as with most things, the simplest. Start by washing your hands to remove any dirt or lotion which could potentially be transferred over to the glasses. Next, dip the glasses under lukewarm tap water from both sides. Avoid using hot water as it can damage certain eyeglass lens coatings. Your glasses might be fine with hot water, but avoid it just in case.
Next, you’re going to want to apply just a small drop of lotion-free dishwashing liquid to each of the lenses. Be aware that dishwashing liquids are extremely concentrated, so a single drop is all you need. Make sure to use brands which don’t include lotions or hand moisturizers, as these can actually wear off the protective coating.
With your fingers, rub both sides of each lens as well as the frame for a couple of seconds. Be thorough and clean as much as you can, including the nose pads and the ends of the temples that rest behind your ears. The most difficult and annoying area to clean, as anyone who wears glasses will tell you, is the edge where the lens meets the frame. Most of the dust and debris accumulate here, and because of the angle, cleaning it can be tricky. With water and some dishwashing liquid it won’t stand a chance though.
Rinse both sides of the lenses next, ensuring you get all of the dishwashing liquid off. Otherwise, you’re just going to end up with a big smear when you wipe them off in the end. Shake the glasses to eliminate most of the water still present on the glasses, and proceed to dry them with a clean and lint-free towel. Cotton towels make an excellent choice, but make sure they’ve been washed and are debris-free.
Inspect both lenses and repeat the entire process if you find streaks or smudges. You can also use microfiber cloth to remove any minor imperfections once you finish cleaning the glasses with water and liquid. You can find these lint-free cloths at most optical shops, such as Optometry Midtown.
An alternative way of cleaning your glasses
If you feel like no amount of regular cleaning will make your glasses spotless or at least satisfactory, consider investing in an eyeglass cleaning machine which will perform deep-cleaning to get all of the debris and gunk out of the difficult-to-clean spaces. As always, it’s best to leave deep cleaning to the professionals and bring us your glasses instead of investing in a machine and wasting time doing it yourself. It is an alternative though, so it was worth mentioning.
Glasses don’t last forever
Replace your glasses every couple of years
Over time the state of your glasses will deteriorate, this is inevitable. Normal use and exposure to the environment will introduce scratches to the lens whether you like it or not. That’s why the lenses themselves are advertised as scratch resistant, not scratch-proof. For most people, as mentioned before, replacing glasses isn’t a regular occurrence though. Take care of your glasses and they will take care of you, in more ways than one, for a long, long time.