How to use Anti-Fog Solutions

anti-fog spray

Anti-Fog spray when applied correctly will help reduce or eliminate lens fogging.

Anti-fog solutions are an effective way to eliminate and prevent fog from forming on a variety of surfaces. Common applications for anti-fog lens treatments include prescription glasses, sunglasses, safety glasses and goggles, and safety shields. In addition to theses common uses, anti-fog solutions can also be effective for refrigerator and freezer doors, bathroom mirrors, windows, cameras and binoculars.

Anti-fog sprays and gels work by reducing surface tension resulting in water droplets being unable to form. While these treatments provide only a temporary fog-resistant layer, they can be the perfect solution for individuals who do not have glasses with built-in anti-fog coatings. In some cases, anti-fog glasses are an essential tool because of an environment where fog is a constant challenge. However, in many other cases, simply using an anti-fog treatment is an efficient way to prevent fog from impairing vision.

An important part of anti-fog treatments is making sure the solution is applied correctly and with the appropriate frequency. In general, the following steps will assure that the solution is properly applied, whether to plastic or glass surfaces.

Applying Anti-Fog Solution

  1. Clean the surface prior to applying anti-fog treatment. (For details on how to properly clean safety glasses, please see “How to Clean Your Safety Glasses.”) Note that extremely dirty surfaces may require a second application. However, be sure to clean surfaces as best as possible prior to applying anti-fog solution.
  2. Shake the solution several times before applying.
  3. Apply the solution. For safety glasses/goggles, apply solution to both sides of lenses making sure the entire surface is covered with the product.
  4. Wait. Many solutions recommend waiting a minute prior to wiping off the solution, but some do not. Check package directions. Note that very cold surfaces may require additional drying time.
  5. Wipe surfaces with a dry, lint-free cloth. A wet cloth may be counterproductive since many anti-fog solutions can be easily removed with clean water. Make sure the solution is evenly distributed over the surface of the lens.
  6. Buff surface with a dry, lint-free cloth until clear. After removing excess solution, buffing with a separate dry cloth or simply a dry part of the same cloth can give the surface a clean shine.

Additional Considerations for Using Anti-fog Treatments:

  • Swim goggles and diving masks require special anti-fog solutions because of constant contact with water. Buy a solution specifically made for these circumstances. Other solutions will likely wash off easily.
  • Eliminating fog may not be entirely possible in extreme conditions such as going from freezing temperatures to an extremely warmer environment. Keep this in mind when choosing between an anti-fog solution and other options such as anti-fog eyewear.
anti-fog cloth

An anti-fog cloth is another option for applying anti-fog solution to your eyewear.

While following the proper steps when applying anti-fog solution is definitely important, the frequency with which it is applied is another crucial aspect of keeping surfaces fog-free. Because many anti-fog solutions can be easily removed with clean water, rainy conditions could possibly wash off the coating. Be sure to reapply anti-fog solutions if lenses get wet. In addition, reapplying anti-fog solution prior to any type of physical activity is important to ensure that fog does not impair vision when it’s needed most. For sports, apply before each event, game or practice. In an environment where fog can be a constant challenge (such as for construction, manufacturing, service and retail workers), applying anti-fog solution daily and sometimes more than once a day may be necessary. For everyday wear, however, applying anti-fog solution every other day is usually sufficient.

The cost for anti-fog sprays and gels is quite reasonable with most falling between $4-$15. Super Strength Anti-Fog Treatment and Smith Optics Fog Master (both sprays) and Bangerz Anti-Fog Solution (a gel) all provide a reasonably-priced option for preventing fog on a variety of surfaces. Both gels and sprays work equally as well, and the choice between the two is really one of preference. Anti-fog cloths such as Smith Optics Elite No-Fog Anti-Fog Cloth and Smith Optics Elite Smudgebuster Cleaning Cloth are another inexpensive option.

With the proper tools as well as a consistent process, keeping glasses and other surfaces clear of fog is an easy task. From sports safety to safety in work environments to everyday wear of glasses and sunglasses, anti-fog solutions can effectively fight fog and help keep vision clear.

5 Reasons to Wear Anti-Fog Safety Glasses

Anti-Fog Safety Glasses

Anti-Fog Safety Glasses help reduce fogging during strenuous activity and increase worker compliance.

In situations where glasses fog and impair vision, injuries are taking place not just from impaired vision due to fog but also because individuals are not wearing safety glasses because of having them fog up when they do wear them. A 2009 study published in Accident Analysis and Prevention magazine indicated that construction, manufacturing, service and retail workers neglected wearing safety glasses because of fogging. In fact, fogging is named as the number one vision related reason for not wearing safety glasses. (http://ohsonline.com)

Research is also indicating that anti-fog safety glasses “have been shown to significantly improve performance, resulting in increased eye-protection use.” (A Second Look at Safety Glasses, www.incident-prevention.com). In other words, where fogging safety glasses is named as a reason for not wearing them, many individuals are now wearing safety glasses because of the anti-fog technology.

Clearly, safety glasses with anti-fog technology make a difference with regard to eye safety, and there are certain situations where the need for such technology is essential. The main reasons for choosing to wear safety glasses with anti-fog technology include:

1.) Combating heat and humidity: Any situation involving strenuous activity, heat and/or humidity warrants use of anti-fog safety glasses. High-humidity environments create more moisture, which causes fogging safety glasses. Additionally, high-heat situations increase worker perspiration that leads to additional moisture. Examples include construction, utility, paper industry and power generation industry workers. Athletes also encounter fogging glasses due to heat and humidity not only environmentally but also due to the strenuous activity involved with sport.

2.) Managing sudden environmental changes: Individuals having to go from an air conditioned inside to a hot, muggy outside environment have to contend with fogging glasses. Conversely, going from a cold outside temperature to a heated indoor environment also causes fogging. Examples of professions involving sudden and frequent environmental changes include food service workers who go in and out of coolers, forklift drivers taking loads inside to outside or vice versa when weather is either hot or cold, and police officers and other first responders in emergency situations.

3.) Decreasing fogging frustrations: When trying to efficiently complete a job, fogging glasses cannot only decrease the ability to do work properly, they become a frustration causing many individuals to opt out of even wearing safety glasses in the first place or to remove them when fogging occurs. Unfortunately, both scenarios obviously create additional safety hazards due to unprotected eyes.

4.) Enhancing vision by increasing visibility: Obviously, glasses clear of fog result in clearer vision. This is helpful in a variety of situations, including sporting activities and any job that requires quick reaction and hand-eye coordination.

5.) Improving performance and efficiency: This reason for choosing anti-fog safety glasses is really a combination of the above four reasons. When fogging is managed in any situation where it is an issue, performance and efficiency is likely to increase as individuals are not removing glasses or waiting for the fog to clear before continuing with an activity. Activity can instead be maintained without the frustrating interruption of fogging safety glasses.

Lens coating can significantly impact the effectiveness of safety glasses, especially where fogging is a concern. Anti-fog coatings can help control condensation and keep vision consistently clear. Safety glasses with anti-fog technology can significantly decrease eye injury by increasing the number of wearers of safety glasses and by decreasing frustrating fogging situations.