What's the right way to clean and treat your glasses?

Tips for looking after your glasses

Crystal-clear lenses – spectacle wearers love that great feeling when they put on their glasses after cleaning and enjoy unhindered vision again. Wouldn't it be wonderful if our glasses were always clean and smears, streaks and fingerprints were a thing of the past? Proper lens care does not only ensure better vision. It also lengthens the lifetime of your glasses. Improper cleaning can also damage modern lenses even if they have an anti-scratch hard coating. BETTER VISION provides a few tips on how to clean your glasses: how can you clean your lenses quickly, thoroughly and yet gently at home and when you are out and about?

The most important cleaning tip for optimum vision

Even if they are often used as the last resort, tissues or shirt sleeves are certainly not the best solution. Articles of clothing and tissues often leave particles of dust or dirt on the lenses, causing micro-scratches. This gradually impairs the quality of the lenses, and your vision suffers as a result. Scratches cannot be removed either from plastic or glass lenses. Even if the defect only appears to be of a cosmetic nature, light is dispersed by the micro-fine scratches, therefore irritating the eye. This often means you have to buy new glasses.

Cleaning your glasses properly – what to do

The following rule applies both for thorough cleaning of your glasses at home and for fast but effective cleaning when you are out and about: you should start by rubbing a micro-fibre cloth or a folded lens cleaning wipe gently over the surface to first remove coarse dirt particles.

1. Fast cleaning – also for out and about

If you have to clean your spectacle lenses quickly, please don't be tempted to use your shirt sleeve, scarf, etc. For cleaning your lenses when you are not at home, ZEISS lens wipes are the perfect solution – they take up practically no space and are immediately ready for use. And all without harmful additives.

If necessary, a simple microfibre cloth also will also fit the bill, but dry cloths are not always ideal, especially when it comes to removing greasy substances. It is better to first moisten the cloth with a cleaning spray and then clean the lens.

Why do opticians often advise against using cleaning cloths?
When they first came on the market, lens cleaning cloths often contained materials that could damage the lenses (e.g. tiny pieces of wood). This problem has since been resolved. ZEISS moistened cleaning wipes are made of micro-fine cellulose fibres, are gentle on your lenses, provide streak-free results and, most importantly, do not contain any other chemcial agents. Incidentally, they are also ideal for cleaning your smartphone or tablet display - all streak-free.

2. Thorough cleaning at home

Many spectacle wearers hold their lenses under running water to clean them. This may involve more effort than using professional cleaning agents, but it definitely has the desired effect. To do this, rub a drop of pH-neutral washing-up liquid between your fingers until suds are formed and then apply this to the lenses. Then rinse the lenses under running, lukewarm water and dry them gently but thoroughly with a microfibre cloth.

Apart from the ZEISS moistened cleaning wipes, the ZEISS lens cleaning spray in combination with a microfibre cloth is an excellent solution for cleaning your glasses at home. This is just as efficient as thorough cleaning under running water – but it's a lot faster. Apply the spray to the microfibre cloth, not to the lenses themselves. Lenses in rimless frames feature drill holes, while lenses in standard frames have screw holes. If liquids constantly enter these holes, this can have an adverse effect in the long term. It is therefore better to apply the cleaning agent to the cleaning cloth. This ensures that your spectacles are not damaged, but there is enough moisture to remove dirt, make-up or grease effectively.

Note: The microfiber cloth should also be washed regularly – ideally in water no warmer than 40° C and without fabric softener. Otherwise the cloth will leave streaks the next time you clean your glasses.

3. Cleaning your frames – what do the experts recommend?

Improper care may also result in damage to your frames. The following tips will ensure that your frames remain as attractive as the day you bought them:

  • Lukewarm, running water and a drop of ph-neutral washing-up liquid provide good cleaning results. Always hold your glasses on the side of the frames you are cleaning. This helps avoid warping or, even worse, breakage of the frames.
  • For reasons of hygiene, it is also recommended to clean the sides of the frames and the nosepads from time to time. This also improves the fit of your glasses as the removal of greasy substances helps prevent slipping.

4. Give your glasses an occasional treat: the special care offered by an ultrasonic cleaner

The use of ultrasonic cleaners (available online and from specialist stores) at home or by your optician is your best guarantee of thorough, convenient cleaning. This is the gentlest and most effective way of removing dirt. Just a couple of minutes are needed to restore your lenses and frames to their former glory. Important: don't forget to change the water in the cleaner regularly.

And if you don't want to invest in your own device, your opticians will be pleased to clean your lenses in their ultrasonic cleaner - ideally every six months. This is part of opticians' standard equipment these days.

The right way to store your glasses

Your glasses deserve a good home! Store them in a hard case whenever you're not wearing them. If you don't have a case with you, make sure you put them in a safe spot, with the lenses facing upwards. It is also important to ensure that your glasses are not exposed to extreme heat. Temperatures of over 80 degrees centigrade can damage even the toughest lenses or frames. Plastic lenses, in particular, should not be subjected to high temperatures. This could have an adverse effect on the durability of lens coatings (the anti-reflective coating, for example). Extreme temperature fluctuations could lead to surface cracks due to the different structures of the base lens and the coating. Therefore, neither your case nor your spectacles should be left for long periods of time in a sauna or on your car dashboard in the summer.

How to keep your glasses cleaner and scratch-free longer

Not only perfect lens care ensures optimum vision but also, of course, the lens itself. Special lens coatings with a hard protective layer and a beading effect (like DuraVision® Platinum from ZEISS) make your lenses extremely resistant to scratching and help guarantee that dirt, dust and moisture can only adhere to the surface with great difficulty. The benefit: your lenses remain dirt-free for longer, ensuring that they're significantly easier to clean. This means you also need less time to care for your lenses - and they will have a longer service life.

My lenses keep fogging up. What can I do to prevent this?

This is where ZEISS AntiFOG is recommended. After cleaning, the spray is applied to the enclosed cloth which is then rubbed across both sides of the lenses. This prevents irritating fogging of your lenses – for up to 72 hours.

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