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How To Remove Scratches From Glasses

Olivia De Santos

Written By:

Olivia De Santos

Dr. Melody Huang

Reviewed by:

Dr. Melody Huang

Updated: 14 April 2024 •  
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It happens to everyone! Your new shiny glasses get a tiny hairline scratch on them. You might not even notice the first once if you’re not looking for it. After all, your eyes barely register it when you’re wearing the eyeglasses. Then slowly but surely, the scratches accumulate. Suddenly your glasses seem like a five-year-old has been drawing on them! What do you do?
Don’t worry! This article is all about how to remove scratches from your eyeglasses (in theory) and how to prevent them from getting scratched in the first place. Let’s dive in!

Why are my glasses scratched?

Scratched eyeglasses are part of the natural wear and tear. However, there are certain behaviors you may be doing that makes your lenses more prone to damage.

  • You aren’t storing them correctlyIf your eyeglasses are often flung on your nightstand with no protection in the evening, they may see more damage over time. They may fall over or scratch in contact with the surfaces you leave them on.

  • You (or others) are handling your glasses incorrectlyYou should handle your glasses using the arms of the frames as opposed to holding the lenses. If your or others’ fingers come into contact with your glasses lenses often, you may see more scratches appear. This is because your nails, dust, and oil from your skin damage the lenses.

  • You’re cleaning your glasses with abrasive materialsWe understand! Sometimes it’s quicker and easier to rub your glasses on your shirt or sweater to clean them crudely. It does the job but may cause damage to the lenses over time. Ideally, you should wipe your glasses with a microfiber cloth that maintains the integrity of your lenses. Even better – you want to dampen it with a cleaner (here’s how to make our favorite 1-minute DIY cleaner).


Is it bad to have scratches on your glasses?

Generally, it’s not a huge deal if you have a few scratches on your glasses. You probably only notice them when you’ve taken your glasses off and inspected them. If you can’t see them at all while wearing your glasses and your vision is clear, there’s nothing to worry about.
You should do your best to prevent more scratches from happening but otherwise, don’t panic. Scratches on your eyeglasses are only an issue if they obstruct your vision or distort the quality of your lens prescription.

3 DIY fixes ways to remove scratches from glasses (Non-Mouqy glasses)

“Removing scratches” is a bit of a misnomer. While you can in theory remove scratches, there are plenty of caveats to trying these methods at home. We’ll discuss the pros and cons of each of them.
Before you attempt to remove scratches from your glasses, make sure you clean them properly. Rid the surface of the lenses from any dirt, grit, and oils that could cloud your vision as you work.

Theory #1: Sunscreen

Sunscreen works for mirrored glasses only. You need to apply it to the entire lens and it will strip the mirrored coating from the lens – removing any scratched with it.
However, now your glasses cease to be mirrored and have no UV protective layer to shield your eyes from the sun. Think carefully about if you want to alter your glasses forever!

Theory #2: Sandpaper

Sandpaper is extremely effective at removing scratched from glasses… while also irreparably damaging the benefits of your lenses. Sandpaper can buff out a scratch beautifully, making the lenses look shiny and new. But underneath the surface, you’re highly likely to remove any beneficial coatings and potentially alter the prescription of your lenses.
If the appearance of clear glasses is all you care about – go for it. If you want to be able to use your eyeglasses for their intended purpose, put the sandpaper down!

Theory #3: Baking powder & Toothpaste

baking powder on ways to remove scratches from glasses
This is probably the best chance at removing scratches from glasses. Applying some baking powder and toothpaste mixed together and buffing gently can remove scratches over time. The keyword here being time. It will likely take repeated exposure to make any sort of impression on the scratches on your lenses. If you want to spend several hours doing this, have fun! We’re rooting for you!
As you can see, trying to fix scratches at home is likely a waste. Definitely don’t try these methods if your glasses have any kind of protective coating.
Here at Mouqy, we create high-quality eyeglasses with anti-glare, anti-scratch, oil-repellent protective coatings. If you try these abrasive DIY methods on our lenses, you will damage the coating and cause further damage.
Overall, as Ashley Katsikos, guest expert optometrist for Healthline says “If you notice a small scratch on your glasses, leave it alone”.

How to prevent scratches to your glasses

Okay, so if you can’t safely remove the scratches yourself, what can you do? As with most things, prevention is the best medicine. Here are 3 tips on how to take better care of your eyeglasses.

1. Clean them thoroughly

Keeping your glasses clean can help prevent your lenses from getting scratched and damaged over time. Not only is the cleaning itself a core part of the maintenance of your glasses, but also you have a chance to inspect any damages with more precision.
Having a regular cleaning practice encourages you to cast your eyes over your lenses and frames more often so you’ll notice any problems before they worsen.
With that said, here’s the lowdown on how to clean your glasses properly.

2. Store them properly

Your glasses will likely come in a case when you buy them. Yet you’re not the only person who conveniently loses them or has a side drawer full of old glasses cases that you swear you’ll use! It’s normal, but we do encourage you to use cases to hold your glasses whenever you’re not using them. Both soft and hard cases have their merits.
mouqy glasses in brown case
Hard cases are more protective of damage and the soft interior lining helps prevent scratches. You can also keep a microfiber cloth handy inside the case so you always have a safe means to polish your glasses (instead of your sweater!). However hard cases can be a little bulky to carry around.
On the other hand, soft cases are lightweight and highly portable. You still have space to carry your microfiber cloth inside for convenience. However, soft cases won’t prevent your glasses from getting crushed by an unsuspecting family member who didn’t spot your glasses case laying on the sofa.
Our advice is to have one of each type of case for different uses. Your hard case is for when you take your glasses off before bed. It can stay on your nightstand. Your soft case is for protecting your glasses on the go. You can have hard cases at your office and in the car too. Set yourself up for success by always having a carrier case available for when you want to remove your glasses.

3. Choose high-quality glasses

So fun fact. Most glasses are not actually made of glass. They are made of a flexible type of plastic that enables the manufacturers to instill protective qualities in them.
Case in point, we at Mouqy have a special protective coating that we apply to our glasses to prevent them from scratching. These high-quality durable coatings can withstand more knocks than your average pair of low-cost glasses. That being said, a protective coating does not absolve you from caring for your glasses properly. You still need to be careful.

How scratched is too scratched?

So far we’ve said that scratched glasses aren’t all that bad. Bit annoying when you take your glasses off and wonder how your eyes can see past them. But beyond that, they’re harmless.
When are your eyeglasses way too scratched to keep or salvage?
The signs are:

  • The scratches are causing blurring of your lenses
  • Your lens prescriptions are distorted
  • Your glasses are so distorted, you can’t see through them!

In those cases, it’s best to replace the lenses. You don’t necessarily need an entirely new frame if you like them. You can consult a professional to change the lenses for fresh ones with your prescription.
All in all, the best way to deal with scratches on glasses is to avoid them completely. You can do this by investing in a great set of high-quality glasses that can withstand the natural wear and tear of day-to-day life.
Check out our collection at Mouqy to find the perfect pair of scratch-resistant glasses for you!

Olivia De Santos
Olivia De Santos is a freelance writer, wedding planner and entrepreneur from London, UK. She’s a world traveller, wordsmith, film buff, mental health advocate and shea butter enthusiast.
Dr. Melody Huang
Melody Huang is an O.D. and medical writer with over ten years of expertise. As an optometric physician licensed with the California State Board of Optometry, Melody currently practices in the Los Angeles area.