Finding the right pair of eyeglasses can be a tricky process, whether you do so through your local optical shop, or through an online retailer. The appropriate frame shape, color and lens prescription are all factors in your decision making. Once you find that perfect pair of glasses, it’s important to take proper caution to keep them clean and intact for a long time.
Below are some of the best tips for how you can make them last:
Use the right cloth.
While it might be instinct to clean your glasses with a tissue or paper napkin, this is strongly discouraged. The textures in the material have a high risk of scratching the surface of your lens. The same goes for the inside of a t-shirt or other article of clothing. Instead, opt for a glass cleaner. The microfiber material is soft and will not scratch your lens.
You’ve probably noticed how greasy your sunglasses get – and you don’t even wear them all of the time. Eyeglasses are no different. Wearing them all day long will, not surprisingly, accumulate smudges, dirt and dust. To keep them clean, wash at least once a day.
Keep your glasses on your nose, not on your head:
Prescription glasses are designed to rest on the bridge of the nose and not on the top of your head. Wrongful positioning can cause the frames to become misaligned, causing even the cleanest of lenses to become less effective when not positioned properly in front of the eyes. Aside from the distortion of shape, this increases the risk of it falling and getting damaged.
Air dry, if possible.
After you clean your glasses, the best thing to do is to let them air dry. This will help prevent particles from other materials coming into contact with the lenses. If necessary, you can dry them with a soft and clean cloth.
When you are not wearing your glasses, store them in a safe container. This will help prevent debris from coming into contact with the lenses. It will also help prevent your glasses from getting bent or broken. There are two options for storage: a snap close case with a soft lining or a microfiber pouch. It might be a good idea to purchase a couple of cases so you are able to store your glasses regardless of where you are.
Take them off using two hands:
When taking off your eyeglasses, endure the pain of using two hands instead of one. This helps to keep the earpieces straight and in proper alignment. Taking them off with one hand stretches the frame, making it lose.
Keep them safe.
If you need to wear glasses when you are working out or doing yard work, consider using a sports strap or eyeglass cord to keep them in place. If not, you risk them falling off and breaking or getting scratched in the dirt.
- Don't wipe lenses when they’re dry.
- Any debris on their surface or dust in the cleaning cloth could cause scratches.
- Don't wipe lenses with a tissue, paper towel, or paper napkin. They can have a rough surface.
- Don't use ammonia, bleach, vinegar, or window cleaner, which can harm lenses and their coatings. (Most lenses are now coated, usually with an anti-reflective layer.)
- Don't spit on your lens. While spit is a handy cleaning solution, “saliva may contain oil or something else that’s damaging,” says American Optometric Association spokeswoman Susan Thomas. Exhaling on lenses before cleaning doesn’t get them very wet, and the association doesn’t recommend it.
- Don't put unprotected glasses in a purse, pocket, or bag.
- Don't regularly place glasses on a sink or vanity top. Spatter, sprays, and cosmetics can soil lenses, and hair spray or perfume can damage anti-reflective coating.
- Don’t leave glasses in a hot car. “Especially avoid the top of the dashboard,” Thomas advises. “The windshield will act like a magnifying lens.”
Following the above tips is the best way to keep your glasses clean and scratch-free for as long as possible.
If your lenses are badly scratched and your eyeglass prescription has expired — or you simply want new glasses — schedule an eye exam.