According to recent studies, your cell phone is probably dirtier than your toilet seat. But, while household cleaning products are good enough to help you disinfect your bathroom, they shouldn’t be used on your phone’s screen. This is because harsh chemicals can damage your phone’s screen and leave scratches. If you want a germ-free phone, here’s how to clean your phone screen and phone screen protector properly.
How to Keep Phone Screen Clean
Use A Microfiber Cloth
The best way to clean dust particles, smudges, and oily fingerprints from the surface of your phone screen is to use a soft lint-free or microfiber cloth. To make your phone shine again, gently wipe your phone screen with your cloth repeatedly from top to bottom. If the smudges don’t seem to come off, then you can moisten your cloth with a small amount of distilled water, and then wipe the screen the same way. However, you should always turn your phone off, and unplug it from power before cleaning it with any liquids.
You might already have these cleaning cloths around your house, as they usually come with most eyeglasses, camera lenses, screen protectors, and many other devices. However, if you don’t have one, you can easily find them in your local retail store or online.
Also, remember to never spray water directly onto your phone screen. Apple warns users against getting any water in the opening of an iPhone, which can damage your phone. Finally, if there’s any excess moisture on the screen, you can remove it with the dry part of your cloth.
Use Distilled Water and Rubbing Alcohol
Using abrasive cleaning products, like Windex or Clorox, can remove the protective oleophobic (oil-repellent) and hydrophobic (water-repellent) coatings right off the surface of your phone. Your phone uses these coatings to repel oil and protect against finger smudges and scratches. Using harsh cleaners can even corrode the metal parts of your phone, so you should avoid using them completely.
You can clean your phone screen and sanitize it by using a mixture of 60% distilled water and 40% isopropyl rubbing alcohol. Just moisten a small corner of your cleaning cloth with the mixture, and gently wipe the screen from top to bottom. But, make sure not to dampen your cloth too much.
Use an Ultra Violet (UV) Sanitizer
One of the best ways to completely disinfect your phone screen is to use a UV sanitizer. Although a UV phone sanitizer costs more than all your cleaning tools and cleaning agents combined, these devices claim to kill 99.9% of common household germs.
These small devices typically use UV-C light to sanitize your phone. One example is PhoneSoap, which was featured on the ABC show Shark Tank. All you have to do is place your phone into the device for 10 minutes, and it will not only clean your phone, but also charge it, too.
Wash Your Hands
One simple way to prevent your phone screen from getting dirty in the first place is to wash your hands. According to a recent survey, Americans check their phones more than 40 times a day. Touching your phone all day means that it becomes a breeding ground for germs and bacteria.
According to the CDC, you should make it a habit to wash your hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after you go to the bathroom, before you eat, and after you cough or sneeze.
What You Should Avoid Using
When it comes to removing dust particles and smudges, you should avoid using paper towels, window cleaners, and other abrasive cleaning products on your phone’s screen. When it comes to disinfecting your phone, you should avoid using ammonia, aerosol sprays, chemical-based, and alcohol-based cleaning agents, like disinfectant wipes, rubbing alcohol, and makeup removers.
However, Apple recently updated its website with instructions that say it’s now okay to use “a 70 percent isopropyl alcohol wipe or Clorox Disinfecting Wipes” to clean your iPhone and other Apple products. According to Apple, you should “gently wipe the hard, nonporous surfaces of your Apple product, such as the display, keyboard, or other exterior surfaces.” The company still advises against using bleach or submerging your iPhone in cleaning solutions.
Aside from these cleaning products, you should also avoid using compressed air, as it can cause damage to your phone’s microphone.
How to Keep Phone Screen Protector Clean
Whether your phone screen protector is made of plastic or tempered glass, keeping it clean is easy. All you need is a little dish soap, scotch tape, and a microfiber cloth, which usually comes with your screen protector. Follow these steps below:
- Place the sticky part of your screen protector under running water.
- Gently wash the sticky part with dish soap, then rinse carefully. This will help remove any fingerprint stains from the screen protector.
- Let your screen protector dry. You can use a hairdryer if you want to speed up the process.
- Loop a piece of adhesive tape around your fingers and dab it against the sticky part of your screen protector. As you are drying your screen protector, new dust particles may fall onto it. The tape will be used to clean off this dust.
- Make sure your screen protector is dust-free. Once you’re done with the previous step, make sure your screen protector is free of dust. If not, you can use a microfiber cloth to make it shine again.
Now that you know how to keep your phone screen clean, check out our guide on how to properly clean your TV screen.