No, not kids with glasses (that’s another story), I’m talking about Moms and Dads wearing glasses with kids around. Whether it is a toddler exploring your face, or couch wrestling your 8-year-olds, your glasses are going to get touched, smudged, and dirty as you go through life as a parent.
Quick Clean Your Glasses
The first step to keeping your glasses clean as a parent is to hold on to those little microfiber cloths that they give you free with every pair of eyeglasses, sunglasses, and sports glasses you buy. Those may have been a throw in your drawer, use them every once and a while luxury before, they are the essential step one to glasses that stay clean around babies, toddlers, and kiddos.
Hoard those glasses cloths like they are canned foods during an emergency. No matter how many of them you have, there will never be one where you need it unless you have dozens of those things. Fortunately, you don’t have to wait and buy a new pair of glasses to get more.
Screen cleaning cloths for computer screens, phone screens, tool screens, and electronic screens are all 100% suitable for using on your glasses. While screen cloths are not the same as iPhone cloths, they work just as well on your glasses. However, if you want to get a jump start on your collection you can order something like six of them for less than $10.
Once you have a sufficient supply of screen wiping cloths, it is time to get serious about jelly fingers, food throws, and the smudges of the two tweens you have pinned to the couch in glorious victory.
My eyeglasses store used to give me these tiny bottles of lens cleaner, and before I was a dad, they were more than enough. I had three or four of those bottles laying around my office at a time. Of course, eventually they would tip over and only fifty percent would stay leakproof. The others would drip away and evaporate in the dry Colorado air.
That dripping problem is exactly why you will need to abandon liquid lens cleaner when you become a dad. You don’t want those slowly dripping out in your diaper bag, your dad satchel, or even in the pockets of your cargo shorts.
But what are you going to do about those times when you get not just a smudge, but an actual smear of jelly (spotting a theme here?), or splash of orange juice on your best pair of glasses? What we need is a way to get the full power of a bottle of liquid lens cleaner, with the potential for drips, breaks, or leaks.
Fortunately, my 60-ish year-old mother accidentally came to the rescue when one of her grandchildren befouled her favorite son’s glasses while on a visit. She handed me, from a drawer, a wet-wipe (restaurant, not baby) type of lens cleaner. These wipes are presoaked in lens cleaner, and then individually packaged. They are so small that you can dump literally dozens of them in your diaper bag, glove box, or cargo pants pockets without adding any bulk or weight. And the best part? No dripping!
Now, I couldn’t find exactly what my mom had. I’m assuming that she found them at Sam’s Club because that is like the one store that would have something like that that we don’t overlap on. (I’m a Costco guy myself. It feels a little nicer, and they actually pay their employees decently.) Nevertheless, the internet to the rescue. Search for lens wipes, glasses wipe, or virtually any variation thereof, and you will find a plethora of wet lens wipe options.
I got a 100-pack of these pre-moistened lens wipes for like five bucks from Amazon. (I know, I got all high-and-mighty up there about Sam’s Club and then go all Amazon on you. Just roll with it ok?) They apparently have Smudge Guard and 3X cleaning power, although I’m not sure compared to what. I’m sure you can find the same at Walgreens or Walmart if you looked around enough.
How To Use Wet Lens Wipes
That’s right, “how to.” You’re thinking, “You can’t be serious,” but I am. Here is why. If you are anything like me, you won’t read the instructions — heck, I don’t know if there are any — and you will instinctively try two things. First, you will try and wipe with these wet ones like you do with those dry microfiber cloths. Don’t. These work best more as a wipe off (side to side, as it were) than as a circular rubbing. Second, you will try and use up the wetness. Don’t do that either or you will end up with streaks.
These things have far more liquid than you need for your eyeglasses. In fact, the side of the box has pictures of glasses, a camera, ski goggles, and what I think is supposed to be a camcorder. (So, if you have one of those lying around you are good to go, I guess.)
Instead, think of these things as tiny Windex wipes and your glasses as tiny windows. More is not better. The goal is to stop touching when the streaks are gone. Just wipe until the peanut butter is off and then give a couple more wipes on both sides of the lens just to be sure and then let your glasses dry. Next, buff them up with one of those dry cloths I told you about up there.
Wondering if Acorns stole my money?
You should be good as new, at least for the next few minutes. I see Junior has spilled his orange juice and gotten it all over those cute overalls Grandma bought for him at Once Upon a Child, or maybe Sam’s Club.
Next up? Using AirTags to track your kids.