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Tips & Tricks

How to Safely Clean Your Camera Lens | Video

By Hanssie on April 23rd 2015

After several long months of saving your pennies, skipping your favorite Starbucks habit for far too long, hoarding your tax return (what tax return, you’re a business owner?!), you finally buy the lens you’ve been eyeballing on B&H since last Christmas. Holding the new lens in your hand is as magical as you imagined it to be. Then there comes a day when you have to clean this fragile thing of beauty and you grab the edge of your t-shirt…


Stop right there. DO NOT clean your lenses with the shirt off your back. There are better, safer and more effective ways to do so, and the following video gives an in-depth look at one through and safe way to clean your camera lens. The 7-minute video below is a few years old, but is still a helpful guide to cleaning your lens properly.


In this lens cleaning method, Evan Luzi from the Youtube channel, The Black and Blue, uses the following items:

For those of you that are fastidious about cleaning your lenses, this is definitely the video for you.

For more photography and filmmaking tips for camera assistants, check out the Black and Blue blog here.

Of course, this is only one of the many methods you can use to clean your lenses, what method do you use?

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Hanssie is a Southern California-based writer and sometimes portrait and wedding photographer. In her free time, she homeschools, works out, rescues dogs and works in marketing for SLR Lounge. She also blogs about her adventures and about fitness when she’s not sick of writing so much. Check out her work and her blog at Follow her on Instagram

Q&A Discussions

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  1. Marlin Woodruff

    OMG, HOW OLD is this video….

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  2. Brandon Dewey

    Greats Tips!!

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  3. Dave Lyons

    Also good to clean the mount.. I use eclipse on a qtip to get the contacts good and clean to make sure af and metering isn’t being slowed down by dirt and around the mounts edges to get all the metal shavings that come off when you mount/unmount the lens and the extra dirt to help keep them from falling on the sensor. Also extend telephotos and clean the barrel. Then of course the bottoms of lens caps lol and on and on and on ugh

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  4. Suhaana Manhattan

    G00gle pay 78$ per hour my last pay check was $9240 w0rking 98 hours a week online. My y0unger brother friend has been averaging 13k for months now and he works about 22 hours a week. I cant believe h0w easy it was once I tried it out. This is what I do.. click at this go to tech tab for more details…

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  5. aaron febbo

    Corner of t-shirt always does the trick for me !

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    • Dustin Baugh

      LOL! I won’t lie, I’ve done it before.

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    • Jay Protacio

      I think we’ve all been guilty of this.

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    • J. Dennis Thomas

      I ain’t gonna lie, I use my shirt more than a lens cloth…

      One thing though, fabric softener causes smearing, so if you wash your lens cloths don’t dry them with the rest of your clothes with fabric softener. I typically dry mine on the dashboard of my car.

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  6. Thomas Horton

    One more thing. Don’t be stingy with the Kimwipes. Change them often during the cleaning of the lens. Do re-wipe an area already wiped with the same part of the cloth. That’s a good way to put the dirt back on the lens. :)

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  7. Thomas Horton

    I thought those compressed air devices were not good for lenses. Depending on the propellant it uses, it can actually add crud to your lens. Some compressed air canisters are specifically made to be residue free (whether they are is debatable) I have always used a blower.

    The Kimwipes are a well known lab wipe. Just make sure you don’t use them dry on a lens. KimTech advises these to be used only when wet on lenses. So Kimwipes and a solution is an excellent way to clean a lens. The next step is to polish the lens and for that a clean microfiber cloth is good… the key being that it is clean and cleaning a microfiber cloth is not always easy. And a clean microfiber cloth needs a clean lens other wise you are just dragging the dirt from your lens around. That is why it is not a good idea to use a microfiber cloth to clean a lens… but it works well to polish an already cleaned lens.

    The take away is that you first have to clean the lens then polish the lens. Each step needs different material. You simply can’t polish a dirty lens. :)

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  8. robert garfinkle

    Thanks Hanssie –

    I typically keep a filter on the lens and clean that – and if the filter gets trashed, opt to replace it if it cannot be cleaned.

    any chance on a sensor cleaning video??? I know that’s way more tricky :)

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