How to Clean Sunglasses Properly

How to Clean Sunglasses Properly

Sunglasses are not just fashion accessories; they also play a crucial role in protecting our eyes from harmful UV rays. However, dirty sunglasses can diminish their effectiveness and compromise our vision. Properly cleaning your sunglasses is essential to maintain their functionality and prolong their lifespan.

1. Understanding Sunglasses Materials

Before diving into the cleaning process, it’s essential to understand the materials used in sunglasses. Most sunglasses are made from either plastic or glass lenses with frames composed of various materials such as plastic, metal, or acetate.

2. Identifying Dirt and Debris

Sunglasses can accumulate various types of dirt and debris, including fingerprints, dust, sweat, and oil residue. Identifying the specific substances on your sunglasses will help determine the most effective cleaning method.

3. Tools and Supplies Needed

Gathering the necessary tools and supplies beforehand will streamline the cleaning process. You will need a microfiber cloth, lukewarm water, mild soap or lens cleaner, and a soft-bristled brush.

4. Step-by-Step Cleaning Process

  • Rinse: Begin by rinsing your sunglasses under lukewarm water to remove loose debris.
  • Soap Solution: Fill a bowl with lukewarm water and add a small amount of mild soap. Gently swirl the water to create a soap solution.
  • Soak: Place your sunglasses in the soap solution and let them soak for a few minutes to loosen stubborn dirt and oils.
  • Brush: Use a soft-bristled brush to gently scrub the lenses, frames, and temples, paying extra attention to areas with visible dirt buildup.
  • Rinse Again: Rinse your sunglasses thoroughly under lukewarm water to remove any soap residue.
  • Dry: Gently pat your sunglasses dry with a clean microfiber cloth, avoiding any harsh rubbing that could scratch the lenses.

5. Avoiding Common Mistakes

Avoid using abrasive materials or harsh chemicals that can damage your sunglasses. Additionally, never wipe your sunglasses with your shirttail or other rough fabrics, as they can scratch the lenses.

6. Tips for Storing Sunglasses

Store your sunglasses in a clean, protective case when not in use to prevent scratches and dirt buildup. Avoid leaving them in hot, humid environments like the dashboard of your car, as excessive heat can warp the frames.

7. Frequency of Cleaning

Ideally, you should clean your sunglasses at least once a week, or more frequently if they are exposed to particularly dirty or dusty environments.

8. Specialized Cleaning for Lenses

Different types of lenses may require specialized cleaning techniques. For example, polarized lenses should be cleaned with a lens cleaner specifically designed for polarized coatings to avoid damage.

9. Cleaning Frames and Temples

For plastic frames and temples, a mild soap solution and a soft-bristled brush should suffice. Metal frames can be wiped clean with a damp cloth, followed by gentle drying.

10. Using Cleaning Solutions

When using cleaning solutions, opt for products specifically formulated for sunglasses to avoid damaging the lenses or coatings. Avoid using ammonia-based cleaners, as they can strip away protective coatings.

11. Drying Techniques

After cleaning, allow your sunglasses to air dry or gently pat them dry with a microfiber cloth. Avoid using paper towels or tissues, as they can leave lint or scratches on the lenses.

12. Preventative Maintenance

To keep your sunglasses clean between thorough cleanings, regularly wipe them with a microfiber cloth to remove smudges and dust. Avoid touching the lenses with your fingers to prevent transferring oils and dirt.

13. Importance of Proper Maintenance

Properly cleaning and maintaining your sunglasses not only ensures clear vision but also prolongs their lifespan. By following these cleaning tips, you can enjoy crisp, unobstructed views while protecting your investment.


Maintaining clean sunglasses is essential for optimal vision and longevity. By following the proper cleaning techniques and avoiding common mistakes, you can ensure that your sunglasses remain in top condition for years to come.

FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions)

Q: Can I use household cleaners like Windex to clean my sunglasses?

A: It’s best to avoid household cleaners as they may contain harsh chemicals that can damage your sunglasses.

Q: How often should I replace my sunglasses?

A: It’s recommended to replace your sunglasses every 1-2 years, or sooner if you notice any signs of damage or decreased effectiveness.

Q: Can I use a hairdryer to speed up the drying process?

A: It’s not recommended as the heat from a hairdryer can warp the frames or damage the lenses.

Q: Is it safe to clean my sunglasses in the dishwasher?

A: No, dishwashers use high temperatures and harsh detergents that can damage your sunglasses.

Q: What should I do if my sunglasses fog up?

A: To prevent fogging, try using anti-fog wipes or sprays specifically designed for sunglasses.