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Can You Remove Scratches From Lenses?

You’re rocking your favorite pair of sunglasses. You’re looking good and feeling good. But what happens when you drop your glasses and scratch your lenses? Is it ruined forever? Can you remove the scratches using at-home remedies? Don’t worry, Fuse is here to help in your time of need.

Photo from Alex Ogle. Instagram @randlev

At-Home Remedies

There are a couple of home remedies that “remove” the scratches from your lenses. Disclaimer: Some of these remedies may “work”, but they’re all superficial, short-term fixes. It could remove or lessen the appearance of the scratch, but it may affect the overall clarity and quality of the lenses. There is the possibility that it may make the problem worse instead of fixing it. So try it at your own risk. However, if you try it out and don’t like the final result, you can check out the replacement lenses from Fuse.

Toothpaste

Toothpaste is a common item located in every household (hopefully). Not only does it help keep your teeth clean and healthy, but it can also be used to remove scratches from lenses. It is important to note, however, that you have to use the paste form, not the gel and it has to be non-whiting.

You will need to apply with a clean, wool cotton cloth or any soft fabric that can be used to clean your lenses and isn’t abrasive. The reason why this can work is because toothpaste has a micro-abrasive that can gently buff out the scratches. The reason behind this method is that eventually, you can wear the lens down to where the surface is even with the scratch’s depth. If the scratch is deeper, you repeat the process multiple times to get adequate results. This method might work if you have lots of patience. But, you’re also scratching your lens to remove scratches - doesn’t sound like a winner to us, but it’s up to you.

Image from news-medical.net (Tasha Cherkasova | Shutterstock)

Baking Soda

If you’re paranoid about using the wrong type of toothpaste, you can try baking soda instead. It basically does the same thing as toothpaste and is another common household item, especially if you like to bake. Even if you don’t have it readily available at home, this is a cheap and common product that isn’t hard to find at the supermarket.

To use baking soda for your scratched lenses, you combine baking soda and water until a paste is created. You use a soft cloth to rub this paste into your lenses and then you wash off and repeat as necessary. Like toothpaste, this may take multiple tries if the scratch is deep. If you have nothing better to do with your time, feel free to scrub away your scratches and your life.

Image from doctoroz.com

Metal Polish

Another form of removing scratches is metal polish and rubbing alcohol. You want to use low-abrasive metal polish and use it to buff away at each scratch. You will have to polish in small circles until the scratch is gone. Like the other methods, it may take a while to polish out the scratch of your lenses, so you might have to do this multiple times. After you are finally finished polishing your lenses and are happy with the end results, you use a cotton swab and rubbing alcohol to give it a thorough clean.

However,  pretty much all sunglasses have a UV coating. The metal polish will strip away this UV coating, therefore it is not recommended to try this method on sunglasses. UV damage is cumulative and you only have one set of eyes, but maybe you’re feeling lucky and are willing to take the risk.

Image from homedepot.com

Furniture and Car Wax

Car and furniture wax is another household item that can remove scratches. And it works great if you use them on cars and furniture, respectively. However, if you use either of this product on your lenses it might work on removing your scratches on your lens, but it also may affect the clarity of your lenses. The whole purpose of removing the scratch in your lenses is so you can see better through them, but if you remove the scratch but don’t improve the visibility of your lens, then it’s kind of pointless.

Image from yourmechanic.com

Glass Etching Wax

If the scratch appears to be more than a surface scratch, then it might be time to bring out the big guns. Glass etching wax is a powerful acid and it will burn the exterior layer of the glass where the scratch is located at.

For this method, you will need glass etching wax, rubber gloves (or other types of high-quality disposable gloves), and cotton swabs. With the cotton swabs, you apply the etching wax but you do not rub it in. Since it is a strong acid you have to work quickly and only apply enough to cover the lens. Do not let this substance remain on the lens for more than 5 minutes, because it will damage your lenses. Then you wash off all the wax with water and clean off your glasses with a fabric cloth.

This method is only recommended for plastic lenses with a coating since you will be stripping off that coating to remove the scratch. Like the metal polish, you will probably remove the UV coating and any other protective coating the lenses may have had. Plus, if you accidentally do leave it on your lenses for too long, you will damage your lenses even more. So maybe bringing out the acid isn’t the best idea.

Image from jacksonsart.com

Sunscreen

For mirrored lenses, sunscreen can help with removing the scratch on your lenses - kind of. However, it will only work if your scratch is in the mirrored part of the lenses. If it goes deeper to other layers, then this method is just a waste of time. Similar to furniture/car wax and glass etching, you will have to apply the sunscreen to the entire lens. It can’t be used just at the scratch, because sunscreen will remove the entire mirror coating from your lenses.

Since you are removing a layer, the clarity, the tint, and other aspects of your lenses might change. If you have polycarbonate (plastic) lenses instead of glass, you might also remove the UV coating in your lenses, which can be damaging to your eyes. And most sunglasses nowadays are made out of polycarbonate. Sunscreen works best on the skin, not the lenses on your sunglasses. 

Image from dailymail.co.uk (Kosmos111 | Shutterstock)

New Lenses From Fuse

Finally, the easiest and best way to rid your sunglasses of their scratched lenses is by getting high-quality replacement lenses. You can even get them with a prescription! Replacement lenses are cheaper, easier, and more reliable than buying new sunglasses or trying the home remedies above.

Sounds expensive right? There has to be a catch. They are more affordable then you think. Starting at $19.99, you get yourself a pair of replacement lenses. Get the perfect fit by searching for the exact brand and model of your lens. If you need help finding the perfect fit, you can contact our amazing customer service team. Even if we don’t offer the exact fit for your frame, there is a chance you can qualify for our custom program. Replacing is the lens is also easier then it sounds.

 

Summary

If you accidentally scratched your lenses, there is no need to worry. You can try one of the home remedies above to remove the scratch. Just make sure you read the directions and advice thoroughly because you do run the risk of making your lens worse. If the methods don’t remove the scratch, if you end up making the lenses worse, or if you don’t have the time or energy to try them out. Then you can always shop for replacement Lenses at Fuse. 

 


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