View Full Version : Is it safe to clean my glasses with Windex?

06-18-2003, 10:43 PM
As I was cleaning my (eye)glasses a few moments ago, I considered the fact that I use Windex-brand glass cleaner to accomplish this task. Windex, to me, is a thing people use to clean windowpanes with; its got that heavy, ammonia-ish smell to it, and its definitely a good glass cleaner.

However, is it safe to use this to clean eyeglasses? I spray some on, wipe it off, wave the glasses around to evaporate any residue, and reposition them back on my face. I've never felt any sort of burning sensation or anything, FWIW.

The main reason I bring this up is, after thinking about it, I realized that I don't know what most people use to clean their glasses. You can buy little eyeglass cleansers at places like LensCrafters, but I've got tons of Windex lying around, and it does clean the lenses pretty damn well.

So, what say you folks? Safe? Is there a better alternative?

06-18-2003, 10:47 PM
Sure, I do it all the time. If you want something even better, use isopropyl alcohol, anhydrous. It dries quick and does a great job of cleaning.

06-18-2003, 10:48 PM
You could use dishwashing liquid, works a treat; and its fumeless too!

06-18-2003, 10:50 PM
Sorry, sent it too soon:

The downside is that you have to go through the whole rince and dry routine.

06-18-2003, 11:19 PM
I use Windex all the time, and I've never... ARRGGHHH! MY EYES!!!! OH, THE PAIN, THE INCREDIBLE AGONY....

Seriously, you'll be okay. I knew a guy who used to clean his glasses with Grease Release, which is somewhat more toxic and corrosive than ordinary Windex. If he's still got his eyes, I think you should be in good shape.

06-18-2003, 11:20 PM
I clean my glasses with Windex all the time. Or with the ammonia-vinegar-water solution that I keep in an old Windex bottle for cleaning glass in my home.

Also use those computer monitor pads that so many office supply closets have a nice supply of....

06-19-2003, 12:12 AM
Just remember that integral step...remove from face, thenspray.

06-19-2003, 12:56 AM
According to My Big Fat Greek Wedding it will actually improve your eyes.

Electronic Chaos
06-19-2003, 02:14 AM
My glasses actually have a special glare-resistant coating on them (Mom used to work for an eyedoctor, so I got a bunch of extra stuff for free), so I have to watch what I clean mine with. If you just have the plain old glasses, you should be golden, though.

Lynn Bodoni
06-19-2003, 04:05 AM
I use soap and water on mine. I used to use alcohol, but it frosted my (plastic) frames.

06-19-2003, 04:22 AM
Glass lenses-windex is fine
Plastic, poycarb, or lenses with antireflective coating-try using mix 1/4 rubbing alcohol, 3/4 water.
Windex has other chemicals in it that can cause problems with lenses that aren't glass.

06-19-2003, 04:26 AM
Oh by the way-don't rub lenses hard, just lightly.
and NEVER try to clean lenses when they are dry.

El Marko
06-19-2003, 08:46 AM
Originally posted by occ
...Windex, to me, is a thing people use to clean windowpanes with; its got that heavy, ammonia-ish smell to it, and its definitely a good glass cleaner.

However, is it safe to use this to clean eyeglasses? ...

Only if you don't try to clean your glasses while you're still wearing them. ;)

Seriously though, I've never had any problem using glass cleaner (of any kind) on my glasses.

06-19-2003, 09:20 AM
Ammonia will fog some types of plastics but I don't know if that includes plastic eyeglass lenses (now there's an oxymoron, plastic glasses).

I use a microfiber cloth, which does a great job dry. I use one on my (glass) camera lenses too.

06-19-2003, 10:45 AM
occ, did you ask the people you got them from how to clean them? There are so many types of glasses I don't think there is a generic answer.

06-19-2003, 12:34 PM
My optician told me when I got my first pair just to use ordinary soap and water.. I quickly dry them afterward with soft toilet paper.. that technique has been working well for me for many years..

06-19-2003, 12:56 PM
As was mentioned above, anti-reflective coatings are very sensitive to harsh chemicals so using anything stonger than dishwashing soap is not recommended. My wife had a pair of glasses that needed to have the AR coating stripped off because overspray from her hairspray got on the lenses and started mottling it.

06-19-2003, 12:59 PM
I take mine in the shower with me, run the lenses under the hot water, and then pop it on the sink to dry. Works wonders.

06-19-2003, 02:11 PM
CookingWithGas: Microfiber cloths work great dry(still, you don't want to rub too hard if it's plastic or AR coated or polycarb lens), but I have found they don't work well on oily spots like fingerprints. It just seems to smear the oil.

wooba: I've use toiletpaper myself, but it can leave small particles like lint on the lenses.

Whiskey-Hotel: With hairspray on AR coated lens (if you think the lens is ruined and will have to be stripped anyway) try a little acetone on the lens to clean it. Do this quickly and rinse with water immediately. This may work, but if it does screw up the coating, you were going to have it stripped anyway. This does usually work with glass, plastic, and polycarb lenses.

GMRyujin: Don't let the water get too hot for too long, this can loosen a lens in a plastic frame.
When using bathsoap, make sure that there are no abrasives in it, like lava soap. A drop if dishwashing soap works best.

I used to work as an optician for 5 years. We used the 1/4 rubbing alcohol, 3/4 water mix in a spray bottle. Using the commercial eyeglass cleaners we sold in the store was too expensive in a large, high-volume store. We cleaned the lenses by rubbing lightly with our clean fingers. For drying, we used a clean lint-free bar towel. Again, don't rub too hard.

Just some suggestions I've used in the past.

06-19-2003, 02:50 PM
I clean mine in the autoclave.

06-19-2003, 02:51 PM
No soap on mine, just some hot water, run each side under, put it out to dry. But this thread is full of great ideas.

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