How To Clean Sunglasses At Home And What Not To Do

There are many irritating things in this life, some of them are unavoidable, and some can be successfully handled. The problem is, we don’t know in which category those things belong until it’s too late. One of these things is your dirty and full of smudges pair of sunglasses

Person cleaning black sunglasses with microfibre cloth

Do you know how to clean them? Of course, you’ll say. Simply rub them with your T-shirt. Well, that’s completely wrong! Luckily for you, we have a solution. We know exactly how to clean sunglasses and eyeglasses properly, all the dos and don’ts so that you can enjoy at last a crisp vision. Keep up with this step-by-step guide and learn all the cleaning tips there is to know! 

How to clean your sunglasses lenses 

Let’s start with the most essential part of your glasses: the lenses. They are the key to seeing your world clearly and in sharp focus. To clean them is a relatively simple task, and once you get used to it, it won’t take you more than a minute or so. First of all, you need a couple of cleaning products:

  • Microfiber cloth. A clean microfiber cloth that hasn’t been laundered with a fabric softener is the most effective tool you can use. It’ll clean your glasses without scratching them as it is as soft as it can get. Other paper products (like soft paper towels) can also get the job done, but a lint-free cloth should be our first choice.
  • Glass cleaner or a simple cleaning solution. Eyeglass cleaner comes in a spray bottle, and it’s specially designed for polycarbonate lenses and lens coatings. If you don’t have one, you can simply use lotion-free dish soap

Step 1: Wash your hands

It’s imperative to wash your hands thoroughly. Otherwise, you can transfer bacteria and germs to your glasses. 

Step 2: Rinse your glasses

Put them under a stream of water. That way, most of the dirt and dust goes away immediately. You can either use cool or hot water. It’s practically the same. If you live in an area with hard tap water, it’s better to use distilled water

Step 3: Dry your glasses

You can either let them air dry or wipe them down with your microfibre cloth. Make sure that the glasses frames are dry before proceeding. 

Hands cleaning eyewear with a microfibre cloth

Step 4: Use lens cleaner or dish soap

Spray both sides of your lenses with the lens cleaner. Try to spray from a distance so that the cleaner goes everywhere evenly. Avoid that way, when you wipe them, accumulate any buildup of the solution. 

If you don’t have a lens cleaner, as we mentioned, you can use dishwashing liquid. Apply a drop of the liquid to each lens and spread it gently with your fingertips. Move your fingertips in a circular motion to create a soapy lather. This will remove any dirt and oils left on the lens. 

Step 5: Wash off the solution

You’re almost done! Clean the solution by running water over your lenses and dry them with your cloth. Do a bit of polishing for a few seconds, and you’ve finished.

Final step: You’re done!

Hold your glasses up and look through the lenses. If they look crisp and clean, you did a great job. You should be proud of yourself! If not, simply repeat steps 4 and 5 once more. 

A girl is checking the sunglasses to see if the glass is dirty.

How to clean your sunglasses frames

If you think cleaning the lenses is all you have to do, you are only doing half the job. Or less, since frames are the main part of the glasses that get the most bacteria, dirt, dust and grime. Particularly the nose pads and the other parts that touch the face. Additionally, the frames have many tiny pieces that get dirty with oils from the face and sweat. 

Clean frames will not give an aesthetic result like clean lenses, but we should not overlook them. It’s a matter of personal hygiene. Many dermatologists also say that dirty nose pads can lead to minor dermatological issues. Why take the risk? Just follow our steps and enjoy clean frames! 

Step 1: Warm water

Rinse the frames under warm water for a minute. Let most of the dirt and smear wash off on its own. You can also put some mild soap to create soapy water and soak them for a minute.

Step 2: Rub the frames

If your frames are made of metal, you can use a toothbrush. If they’re made of delicate materials, it’s better to use a cotton swab to avoid scratching them. Rub them in circular motions, putting a bit of pressure on the parts with visible dirt buildup

Step 3: Rinse and dry

Once more, rinse the glasses under running water to wash off the soap. Then with a spritz of rubbing alcohol, clean the pads and the earpieces. Try not to touch the lenses with the rubbing alcohol as they might be sensitive to it. Finally, let them dry for a couple of minutes, and you are good to go. 

Woman hands cleaning her sun glasses with micro fiber cloth

Cleaning sunglasses: What you should never do

Let’s state the obvious. We all do things that we shouldn’t really do. Why, though? To save time? Because we’re lazy? Because we don’t know exactly what to do? For all these reasons and many more, we are not cleaning our glasses properly. Let’s go over the common mistakes people make regarding cleaning eyewear. Take a look at our list of don’ts:

  • Never use a shirttail, a blouse or any clothing for that matter to clean your lenses, particularly when they’re completely dry. You’ll most likely scratch them.
  • Never use saliva to wet the glasses as a substitute for an eyeglass cleaner. Come on people! Apart from the fact that it is gross, it’s not hygienic and won’t do any good. 
  • Avoid vinegar, bleach and ammonia or other household cleaners. Would you immerse your body in a tub full of vinegar or ammonia? You wouldn’t. You are not that dirty. Your glasses aren’t either. These products contain ingredients that can significantly damage your lenses and frames, especially if they have an anti-reflective or anti-scratch coating
  • Avoid using hard paper products like napkins, toilet paper or tissues. If you apply a bit more pressure than is needed, you’ll most likely scratch or smear them. 
  • Just don’t try to “buff away” any scratches from your lenses. You’ll certainly make things worse. 

How to keep your sunglasses safe and clean 

If you don’t want to clean your sunglasses constantly, you should try adopting some healthy habits that’ll assist you in keeping them safe and clean.

1. Store them in a case

We recommend always having a spare case in your backpack or bag for your glasses. Don’t toss them with the rest of your personal belongings, like house keys, coins, mobile phones, etc. Sooner or later, they’ll get scratched, and you will start from the beginning. Also, do not place them on a table with the lenses facing down. If you don’t have a case with you, put them upside down in a safe place, where they won’t get knocked over.

A pair of sunglasses and a case on a wooden table

2. Do some cleaning every once in a while

If you see a minor scratch, a bit of dirt, or they’re just wet, go ahead and clean them with a cloth. Don’t wait for the dirt to stack up before you clean it. Always be proactive! Also, from time to time, it’s advisable to clean your microfiber cloth. Wash it with soapy water and let it dry. It will remove the dirt and deposits. 

3. Professional cleaning

Sometimes, it might be impossible to clean the dirt by yourself. Don’t hesitate to visit the optician where you purchased your sunglasses. He can deep-clean both the lenses and the frames and remove every particle of dirt and scratches using an ultrasonic cleaning device.

man looking at bright sun through polarized sunglasses

Wearing sunglasses, especially during summertime, for most of us is an absolute necessity. We can’t drive our cars, and we can’t walk on the streets without them. In simple words, sunglasses are an irreplaceable part of our everyday life. So, we have to keep them clean, not only for aesthetics but also for personal hygiene. As we saw above, cleaning eyeglasses is not that big of a deal. It takes only a few minutes, and it’s completely hassle-free. Now you know all the tips to protect them and everything you have to do if they eventually get some dirt. You’re ready now to see the world clearly! If you found this guide helpful, then go ahead and check our simple guide on how to get rid of scratches on your phone as well!

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