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How to Fix Scratches on Polarized SunglassesPolarized sunglasses have always been popular among water sports enthusiasts because they reduce horizontally reflected glare from the water. Many people have purchased polarized sunglasses for use in a number of other outdoor activities including golf, skiing, and even driving. The benefits of polarized sunglasses come with a price, however, which is why discovering a scratch is a big deal. Thankfully, if users know which type of lenses they have, fixing scratches on polarized lenses is easy.

The type of lens makes a huge difference when it comes to maintenance and care regardless of polarization. It is important to know which of the two main lens materials, glass or plastic, is used in the sunglasses lens. Individuals should also note if lenses are actually polarized or not.

Glass vs. Plastic Lenses

While there are many variations within each category, lenses are made from either glass or plastic. Glass, the original lens material, is much more resistant to scratches than plastic; however, it is also heavier and prone to breakage. Plastic lenses consist of any one of a number of different types of plastic materials including CR39, the most common material found in glasses, polycarbonate, and military-grade NXT.

Sun Protection Options

In addition to the different base materials used in a pair of sunglasses, determining whether or not those glasses are polarized is important as well. The table below describes the characteristics of other common types of sun-protective lenses.

Type of Sun Protection


How to Identify

Anti-Reflective Coating

Cut reflected glare caused by light reflecting off the back of the sunglasses


Blue Blockers

Block "blue light"


Gradient Lenses

Shields eyes from overhead sunlight but allows more light in through lower portion of lens

Darker tint at top grows lighter toward bottom of lens

Limits amount of light entering the eye

Different colors of "flash coating" applied to the front of the lenses

Polarized Lenses

Blocks glare from horizontal surfaces

Laminated filter applied to the front of the lens

Those who are trying to fix used sunglasses, especially, should review the different types of sun protection available other than polarization. Compare those to the glasses in question before proceeding with a procedure to fix scratches.

How to Fix Scratches on Polarized Lenses by Type

The method used to repair polarized sunglasses depends highly on the type of lens material. After determining if the sunglasses are made of glass or a type of plastic, proceed with the following steps.

Fixing Glass Lenses

One of the major pros of owning glass lenses is their resistance to scratches. As such, most scratched glass lenses contain deep gouges that are hard to repair. Depending on the severity of the scratch, it may be impossible to fix without professional intervention. There is one method, however, that works for minor surface scratches on polarized glass lenses.

  1. Find a tube of white, non-abrasive, non-gel toothpaste and squeeze a pea-sized drop onto a cotton pad.
  2. Rub the toothpaste over the scratch in a gentle, circular motion.
  3. Wipe off the toothpaste using one side of a microfiber cloth.
  4. Using the clean side of the cloth, dampen and wipe the lens until the toothpaste disappears.

Depending on the depth of the scratch, it may be necessary to repeat these steps more than once to produce ideal results.

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