How to Clean Glasses (Spectacles) is reader supported. This page uses affiliate links and when you click on an affiliate link, and make a purchase, we receive a small compensation at no cost to you. See our disclosure policy for more information.

Learn the best way to clean your glasses without damaging them

If you need glasses to see or read and have a prescription pair of glasses, you are no stranger to knowing that you need to take extra care to keep your glasses clean. Proper care of your spectacles is to take care of them daily and ensure you wash them the right way to prevent damage.

Prescription glasses are not cheap, and if you break or scratch them, you could be without glasses for several days while you wait for a replacement.

It can be annoying anytime you get smudges or your glasses get dirty. Not only is it irritating and can make it difficult to see, but smudges can carry bacteria. Caring for your glasses not only helps you see better but can also help prevent breakouts in spots where your glasses meet your skin.

Cleaning your glasses is easy, and you have to be gentle. This article will walk you through the safest, most effective ways to clean your glasses, as well as a few tips and tricks to make your glasses last a long time.

A quick guide to cleaning your glasses

Before you begin to wash your glasses, be sure to wash your hands first. Your glasses are kept on your face, close to your eyes, and touching your skin. Your hands can carry many bacterias as you move through the day. You want to do your best to prevent bacteria from spreading to your eyes from your face.

Be sure not to use hand sanitizer and actually wash your hands! The alcohol in hand sanitizer can damage your glasses.

Items you will need:

Cleaning your glasses is easy to do, and you should complete these steps in your morning routine.

Follow these steps to clean your glasses:

  1. Rinse your glasses in warm running water. Avoid hot water as it can damage the protective coating and the frames.
  2. Add a small drop of Dawn dish soap directly to your glasses. Ensure the dish soap you use is lotion-free.
  3. Using your hands, gently rub the dish soap using circular motions, creating a lather. Be sure you address both sides of the lenses and the frame.
  4. Use a cotton swab to clean the crevices on the nose pad and get any hard-to-reach spots.
  5. Rinse your glasses with warm running water until the glasses are clear of soap.
  6. Carefully shake your glasses to get any excess water clear of the glasses.
  7. Gently dry your glasses with a clean microfiber cloth or a cloth made specifically for glasses. This could be the cloth that came with your glasses when you purchased them.

You should inspect the lenses after you clean them to ensure there are no remaining streaks or smudges. Use a microfiber cloth to get any remaining grime off your glasses.

Incorporate cleaning your glasses into your everyday routine, making it habitual, just like when you wake up to brush your teeth first thing in the morning.

Cleaning your glasses on the go

Many people may get smudges on their glasses throughout the day. To clean your glasses on the go and avoid damaging them, you should carry a spray made for glasses and a microfiber cloth.

You can usually keep a small cloth in your glasses case that you can take with you. You can find eyeglass cleaner kits online, at your eye doctor’s office, and at many pharmacies. I often purchase a few of these at a time as I keep them in my car, kitchen, office, and bedroom.

Where possible, it’s best to always wash your hands thoroughly before handling your glasses, otherwise, you are likely to smudge grease and debris while cleaning them.

  1. Spray both sides of your lenses with the spray cleaner.
  2. Wipe away the cleaner using the microfiber cloth in circular motions until the cleaner longer remains.

Tips and tricks for caring for your glasses

You can follow many tips to ensure you are correctly taking care of your glasses, including preventative measures to avoid damaging your glasses.

  • A common mistake people make is using paper towels, tissues, and shirts to clean their glasses quickly. These materials are rougher than you think and can scratch your glasses. Use a soft cloth, like the one that came with your glasses, to remove smudges quickly. Using a shirt can also transfer the dirt to your glasses.
  • Never use saliva to clean your glasses. This spreads germs from your mouth and can make your glasses look more smudgy.
  • It would be best if you washed your lens cloth at least once a week to remove dirt and buildup.
  • Always store your glasses in a case when you are not wearing them. This helps prevent damage and keeps them protected from dirt.
  • Avoid using anything with alcohol or acetone when cleaning your glasses. These can damage your lenses and weaken the frames.

Frequently asked questions about cleaning your glasses

How do you clean cloudy glasses?

Cloudy glasses can be cleaned in the same manner as instructed in this guide. Use a mild dishwashing soap (preferably unscented) and gently rub it onto your lenses. Then use running water to rinse the soap off. Use an approved and clean microfiber lens cloth to dry them.

Can you use Windex to clean your glasses?

No. Do not use Windex. The chemicals in Windex can be harsh and could damage any potential coatings that are used on your lenses (and frames). Windex can break these materials down and may cause irritation to your skin and eyes.

Can you use rubbing alcohol to clean your glasses?

No. Do not use rubbing alcohol to clean your glasses. Like household cleaners, strong concentrates such as ammonia, bleach, and alcohol, can be too harsh for your eyeglasses and ultimately end up damaging the lenses. not only this, but the alcohol can severely irritate your eyes. While many cleaning solutions do utilize rubbing alcohol, it’s most often heavily diluted with water.

Can I use paper towels or tissues to clean my glasses?

No. Do not use paper towels or tissues. Like many other dry cloths, they are too abrasive and can ultimately scratch the lens surfaces, destroying your eyeglasses.

Keeping a crisp and clear view

Cleaning and caring for your glasses should be a part of your daily routine. Taking care of your glasses regularly helps you to be able to see clearly. Regular maintenance of your glasses frames can even help prevent your pores from clogging on your face.

Caring for your glasses can extend their life, but glasses aren’t meant to last forever. Your eyes can deteriorate over time, and you may need a new prescription. Even with proper care, you can’t always protect your glasses from scratches. Life happens.

Follow our tips and tricks, and you can keep your glasses clean and clear for as long as possible. Glasses care isn’t just washing and preventative measures. You may end up with a foreign substance on your glasses like superglue that you aren’t sure how to get off.

If you ever happen to break your frames and end up getting super glue, be sure to check out our guide on How to Remove Super Glue from Eyeglasses to help you in this sticky situation.