How to Clean Prescription Glasses Properly

Buying a new pair of prescription glasses can lead to investing quite a bit of time and money, picking the one that will best complement your features and fit properly. It's important to protect your glasses as best as possible, think of them as an investment in your eyesight. Maintenance goes beyond keeping eyeglasses in a case when not in use; it also means properly cleaning the glasses without risking damage to the lenses.

Why is Cleaning Important?

By keeping your eyewear clean, you'll be able to see where you're going more clearly and ensure your glasses still look good as new. Although most kinds of cotton cloth should work just fine, you'll find the best results with microfiber cloth that is designed for the fragile eyeglass surface.

Failing to clean your eyeglasses will eventually lead to dirt and oil buildup, which makes the frame look greasy and makes it harder to see through. It's not just something you'll notice, either; anyone you're in a face-to-face conversation with will be able to see the state of your glasses.

What Not to Do

Just about anyone who has ever worn eyeglasses has done it before: To give a pair of glasses a quick clean, we take them off and immediately grab the bottom of our shirt and give each lens a few wipes. While it isn't necessary to obtain any kind of specialized solutions to clean lenses, there are a few common products to avoid, such as ammonia-based products or any kind of residential glass cleaners, all of which will likely strip away the lens coating.

Why can't you just use a shirt? Besides the fact that it might not be the cleanest cloth around, leading to smudges that don't actually clear up the lenses, your shirt might also contain a heavy amount of dust, which will scratch the glasses. For this reason, it's best to use microfiber cloth; when this is not available, you can instead look for a piece of clean cotton cloth in your home.

What to Do

Before getting started, be sure to thoroughly wash and dry your hands. There's no point in trying to clean up your glasses if your hands will undo your work. Washing your hands ensures you won't have any lotion, dirt, grime or oil that can end up on your glasses. If possible, use a lint-free towel to dry your hands.

Under lukewarm water, rinse the full eyewear, including both lenses and the frame. This first line of offense gets rid of surface debris, like dust, that can scrape at the lens coating while you're cleaning them. For the sake of this coating, be sure not to use hot water for this step, which can also damage the lenses.

Using either the soft cloth or your fingertips, rub all parts of the lenses and the full frame with a cotton cloth. Pay special attention to the parts that touch your ears and nose, since these parts are in regular contact with skin that regularly produces oil.

What About Contact Lenses?

As far as cleaning contact lenses and storing them properly, there are several solutions available, designed to get rid of any protein or oil buildup from during the day. Left untreated, the buildups reduce the lifespan of the contact lenses while also irritating the eyes when in use. To clean these lenses, avoid medicated drops, saliva or tap water; only use a solution that is recommended by your doctor for your particular contact lens brand. Additionally, it's important to thoroughly wash and dry your hands with a lotion-free liquid soap before handling contact lenses.

Contact a Professional

For more detailed information on how you can keep your eyeglasses or contact lenses clean, be sure to contact us if you have questions on which solutions will work best for your brand and type of eyewear. You can stop in for a cleaning or adjustment appointment as well, or to learn more about how to best handle your eyewear to prevent unnecessary oil or grime buildup.