How To Get Super Glue Off Of Glasses Lenses
Superglue is a fast-acting, extra-strong adhesive called cyanoacrylate adhesive. It’s known for being particularly handy because it can instantly stick to just about any type of surface. That’s a good thing—until this glue ends up in the wrong place.
If you are trying to fix your eyeglasses, superglue might not be a bad choice, but when it accidentally gets on your lenses, it can cloud your vision or make your glasses difficult to see through. This article will review some things you can try to remove this power glue if it ends up in the wrong places—or on the wrong things.
Dealing With Wet Super Glue
Removing super glue from any surface—including polycarbonate, plastic, or glass eyeglasses—is usually the easiest if you spot the problem right away and work quickly. Wet super glue is sometimes possible to remove immediately with a wet cloth. Press a wet cloth with warm water over the glue, hold, and scrub off if needed. How well this method works will depend on the amount of glue, the type of surface you are trying to remove it from, and how long it has been there.
The Preferred Method: Acetone
Acetone is generally recommended by manufacturers of super glue as the most effective way to remove this adhesive from most surfaces, including glasses. Acetone is a solvent that is usually used to remove things like paint and nail polish.
Make sure you know what your glasses lenses are made of first, though. Acetone can damage plastic lenses or certain lens coatings on lenses made of glass or other materials that would normally be resistant to acetone. If you’re unsure about the material or coating on your lenses, try to test a small area outside of your field of vision before applying acetone to a larger area and make sure not to get it on your frames.
If you’ve determined that acetone can be used safely on your glasses, the first step is to wet a cotton swab or cotton ball, soaking it through with acetone.
Hold the acetone-soaked cloth or cotton over the spilled super glue, keeping it in place as it begins to break down and soften the adhesive.
Use the soaked cotton ball to wipe away the softened glue, which should take on a clay-like or sticky texture.
Once you’ve removed the glue, clean and polish your lenses as you normally would to remove any residue.
Alternative Method 1: Remove Super Glue From Glasses With Toothpaste
If you’ve decided against trying acetone on your glasses, toothpaste is another option that could remove, or at least thin a layer of super glue.
This is a pretty simple method that just involves rubbing toothpaste over the glue. Gentle abrasives and other chemicals in the toothpaste may help to wear away the glue without damaging the surface of your glasses. Depending on what your glasses are made of, though, there’s still a small chance the toothpaste could leave tiny abrasions or scratches on your lenses. There’s also a chance that toothpaste won’t help remove the glue.
Alternative Method 2: Remove Super Glue From Glasses With Soapy Water
Soapy water is probably the gentlest option you have for trying to remove super glue from your lenses next to immediately rubbing wet glue off with a warm cloth. It might not be as effective as acetone or other choices, but warm, soapy water isn’t likely to cause damage to your glasses, either.
First, mix warm water with liquid dish soap. About half a cup of water to a teaspoon of dish soap should be enough.
Mix until the soap dissolves, then soak a cloth in the mixture.
Press the wet, soapy cloth over the glue stain and leave in place as the glue softens. You may need to re-soak the cloth and repeat the process more than once to completely remove the glue.
Alternative Method 3: Remove Super Glue From Glasses With Alcohol
Some types of alcohol, like rubbing alcohol, may be able to remove super glue from glasses if you leave it on long enough.
First, pour rubbing alcohol over the surface, or set your glasses into a dish of alcohol.
Let the glue stain soak in the alcohol solution for 15 to 20 minutes.
The glue should soften, and you can use a blunt, non-abrasive tool or even a fingernail to try and scrape the glue off.
Alternative Method 4: Remove Super Glue From Glasses With Oils or Lubricants
Oily substances may also help break down a super glue spill and lift it from the surface of your glasses.
Penetrating oils like WD-40 may help to break down the structure of the glue so it can be scraped from your glasses. Spray or wipe the WD-40 onto the glue stain.
Let the penetrating oil sit on the stain for at least one minute.
Wipe away the penetrating oil—and hopefully the glue—with a clean, dry cloth.
Alternative Method 5: Remove Super Glue From Glasses With Abrasives
Emery boards, sandpaper, and other abrasive materials may help you to buff super glue off a variety of surfaces, but it’s not recommended for eyeglasses. Abrasive materials that scratch away dried super glue will also scratch or damage glass, plastic, or polycarbonate eyeglass lenses.
There are plenty of household items that you can try to use if you end up with a dab of super glue on your glasses, but keep in mind that many of these chemicals are also likely to damage the coating on your lenses or ruin your glasses completely. If you’ve spilled something like superglue on your glasses, replacing the pair, or even just the lenses, might be a better choice.
Overnight glasses can get a pair of replacement glasses to you in as little as a day or ship new lenses for your existing frames as fast as 4 days roundtrip.