How to Clean Camera Lenses: The Handy Materials You Should Have

How to Clean Camera LensesAs a proud camera owner, you want to make sure that your camera works perfectly and is always clean. One of the most frequently asked questions when it comes to maintaining a camera is how to clean camera lenses. This is because camera lens can be quite expensive, and if you were to make a mistake, it could put a hole in your pocket.

There are a number of ways to go about it that you can choose depending on what works best for you and your lens. The good thing is that most of the tools you will need for cleaning the lenses are readily available online and in camera shops. They are also quite inexpensive, so you should not have any qualms spending on a cleaning supply for your camera.

How to Clean Camera Lenses: The Different Cleaning Materials

Here is a list of methods and materials you can use to clean the camera lens.

  • Blowers

Blowers are great for removing dust from camera lenses and are easily available everywhere. They can be very effective at cleaning the outer side of the camera. However, it is not exactly best for cleaning the camera’s insides as there is a strong chance it will push the dust further inside.

You can use them quickly before putting the camera to work. Make sure to blow it once or twice to get any dust particles collected inside it out. Canned air is another way of blowing off dust; however, in the case of a lens, it can be too risky. The force may be too strong and can potentially blow it into the lens housing.

  • Lens Cleaning Fluid

This is considered to be the most common way for photographers to clean their lenses. Why? It is simple, easy, and works like magic. It is basically made from alcohol and can be purchased from your local camera store or online. This fluid can clean out any dust, fingerprints or smudges without leaving behind streaks.

When using this, you must keep in mind that you only need a drop or two at a time, so make sure never to put more than that. Also, never pour it on the lens directly. In addition, since you are using an external cleaning agent, do not do it too regularly. Use the fluid perhaps once a month. If it does leave a streak, you can remove it by reapplying the fluid. Simply put, when these fluids are very effective, overuse could be counterproductive.

In order to clean your camera lenses using this fluid, you must drop it in a cloth or tissue that have less fiber. Apply it on the lens in a circular motion with less or controlled pressure. Leave it for a while for it to dry. In case the tissue or cloth left any fiber, remove it carefully with the help of soft and dry fabric.

  • Cleaning Tissues and Wipes

There are special lens cleaning tissues that are made of very thin and soft paper. They can be used to wipe the lens either just like that or with the fluid and should only be used once. There is a new thing on the market today which is pre-moistened wipes that already contain some alcoholic fluid. It can be particularly handy when you are in work mode and need to clean up as quickly as possible. These come in boxes just like wipes and can be a useful alternative to both cleaning fluids and tissues.

  • Cleaning Cloth

If you are a person who loves reusing things, a cleaning cloth is your best option. This microfiber cloth is soft enough for wiping out smudges and can be washed for reuse. It is a good alternative to tissues, and even if you do not want to wash them, you can just buy a new one because these are pretty handy and do not cost a lot.

  • Brushes

For those who have not used their camera for a while and have a lot of dust to deal with can go for brushes. These work great for cleaning out dust from the entire camera. Since you are will use it on your lens, only opt for the one that is made of high-quality soft hair such as camel hair. Anything rough and low quality will just not work or worse, leave scratches on the lens.

Some Preventive Measures

How about not getting your camera or lens dusty in the first place? Like the sound of that? There are precautionary measures that can ensure your camera or the lens, in particular, does not get dirty. Here is what you can try:

  • Lens Filter

Lens filters can vary in terms of quality, so ideally, you should invest in a good one that functions properly and lasts long. This is even more important if you own very expensive lenses because you do not want them scratched. This is attached to your lens all the time and acts as a preventive layer. Although its main job is to protect it from the sun, it also protects it from scratches and dust. Also, since no dust is allowed on the lens, you will just need to clean up the filter which should not be too difficult.

  • Silica Gel

Aside from dust, moisture can also be a real problem. The best way to deal with that is to put in a few silica gel sachets in the camera bag. They will absorb any accumulated moisture, and keep it from harming your camera parts. You can replace them from time to time to keep them functional.


Now that you know how to clean camera lens and how to protect it from dust, you should also know that you should take extra care when changing lenses. Cleaning the lens itself is quite easy as compared to cleaning the camera from inside. You do not want to allow dust to enter the inside of the camera.

All of these cleaning supplies for the lens are cheap, so you can easily buy them in bulk and use whenever need be. For any stubborn smudges or lens problems, seek professional help. Always avoid touching the lenses with your bare hands.