Having a scratch on your eyeglasses can be really challenging. Apart from the fact that it restricts your field of vision, it poses a safety problem when driving or riding a bike.
So, what to do if your glasses are scratched? Are there any home remedies you can simply smear on the glass that will make the scratch disappear? Or should you ask an optician for advice? Do you even need a whole new pair of glasses?
Don't spend any more time on these questions. Here's free advice from the opticians at Lentiamo. They've put together everything you need to know about scratched lenses!
Is it bad to have scratches on your glasses?
A small scratch on your glasses is certainly annoying and possibly even disturbing, but it will not damage the optical system of the eye in most cases.
However, it's possible that the damage or scratch is so disturbing that it will eventually cause headaches or eyestrain if left unattended. This is because it creates light scattering that irritates the eyes. This causes them to tire more quickly.
In addition, reflections from scratches pose an increased danger in road traffic.
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How to get scratches out of glasses and sunglasses
Will toothpaste remove scratches from your glasses?
Toothpaste can fill minor scratches, making them appear less noticeable.
BUT: although many websites claim that toothpaste is the solution for scratched lenses, we would not recommend using it on lenses. In fact, it can cause even more damage to your spectacles.
Abrasive chemicals in toothpaste can scratch the surface of lenses and cause further damage by washing off special lens treatments, UV protection or sun tint.
This may even damage the dark tint and coatings on sunglasses that help protect your eyes from UV rays. When these treatments are damaged, your glasses will most likely fail to correct your vision and appear cloudy, smudged or out of focus, regardless of how well you clean them.
Want to know how to clean your glasses to avoid scratches on the lenses?
Read our guide and learn how to clean your glasses and sunglasses at home.
Can you use baking soda to remove scratches from your glasses or sunglasses?
Same as with toothpaste, our optometrists would never recommend using baking soda on your scratched lenses as it's likely to cause you even more damage.
Why? Using baking soda can deform your lenses and remove important lens finishes. As a result of the damaged lens surface, your spectacles will no longer function as they should. When the surface is damaged, the lenses can become opaque or cloudy, which further deteriorates your vision.
If you wear sunglasses, baking soda will damage the tints and coatings that protect your eyes from UV exposure.
In other words, home remedies may seem like a quick fix. However, in the long run, they put your glasses at risk of permanent damage. Therefore, it's best to visit your optician to have the scratches on your glasses or sunglasses checked by a professional.
What about glass etching products for removing scratched coatings?
Usually, eyeglasses and sunglasses are coated with some kind of finish on the lenses, either to polarise them, to protect them from light scratches or for reflection purposes. These coatings often get damaged by scratches, leaving the glass underneath intact.
Certain products used to etch glass can therefore be applied to spectacle lenses in order to completely remove these coatings without damaging the plastic lenses, not glass lenses.
Note that lenses made of glass will be fully destroyed by these products and will no longer provide certain functions related to the coatings, such as polarisation!
So what to do with scratched glasses?
When you notice a small scratch on your eyeglasses that doesn't affect your vision, we recommend that you let it be. It's best to take steps to prevent further scratches so that your glasses are well cared for in the future.
How to avoid scratches on lenses
There are several things you can do from the moment you buy your glasses to prevent scratches on the lenses. Careful and regular cleaning, for example, is essential to avoid scratches.
Do this first: Before visiting an optician or applying any surface treatment, clean your glasses carefully with a microfibre cloth suitable for glasses. Use minimal pressure and spectacle cleaner.
In general, you should follow these 3 steps if you want to prevent scratches on your lenses:
- Use a protective hard case with a soft inner lining whenever you aren't wearing your glasses
- Grip your glasses by the temples and not the rims to reduce the risk of accidental scratching
- Use a soft microfiber cloth and specialized lens cleaning solution
Our tip: Lenses made of glass are more scratch-resistant than lenses made of plastic (polycarbonate). They are harder and less prone to scratches. Glass lenses are a bit heavier than modern polycarbonate lenses, but if you are worried about scratches, glass should be your choice.
When is it advisable to buy new glasses?
In some cases, however, there is no way around new glasses. Consider buying a new pair if your lenses:
- cause visual disturbances
- obstruct your vision
- give you headaches
Would you like more information on spectacle lenses and the latest trends in eyewear?
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