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The Ultimate Guide to Cleaning and Disinfecting Cosmetic Contact Lenses

The Ultimate Guide to Cleaning and Disinfecting Cosmetic Contact Lenses

Proper cleaning and disinfection of cosmetic contact lenses are crucial for maintaining eye health and comfort. This comprehensive guide will help you understand the various cleaning solutions available and how to use them effectively to keep your lenses safe and your eyes healthy.

Introduction

If you want to avoid the hassles of cleaning and caring for cosmetic contact lenses, daily disposables may be the best option for you. However, if you find daily disposables too expensive, you'll have to learn how to care for your contacts properly. Among the most important things you should know are the different cleaning and disinfection products for your contacts.

Types of Cleaning and Disinfection Products

Saline solution bottles from Equate and Vizulize, designed for rinsing soft contact lenses after cleaning. Ideal for sensitive eyes, but not for disinfecting or storing lenses.

Saline Solution

This solution is used to rinse your lenses after cleaning, just before you put them in your eyes. Remember that this is generally just for rinsing and is not advisable as a disinfectant or a storage solution.

Usage Tips:

  1. Always rinse your lenses with saline solution after cleaning them with a daily cleaner.

  2. Do not use saline solution as a disinfectant or for storing lenses.

Opti-Free and Bausch + Lomb Sensitive Eyes daily lens cleaners. Used to remove surface deposits from contact lenses, promoting clarity. Apply drops and rub gently, then rinse with saline solution.

Daily Cleaner

As the name suggests, this solution is used to clean your contacts daily. Typically, you place a few drops on each lens and rub gently for about 20 seconds before rinsing. You must be very careful when rubbing the lens if you have long fingernails.

Usage Tips:

  1. Use daily cleaner every time you remove your lenses.

  2. Rinse the lenses thoroughly with saline solution after using the daily cleaner.

Bausch + Lomb Biotrue and Acuvue RevitaLens multipurpose solutions for contact lenses. These solutions offer combined rinsing, disinfecting, cleaning, and storing in one bottle. Ideal for convenient lens care.

Multipurpose Solution

As the name suggests, this solution can be used for several purposes, namely rinsing, disinfecting, cleaning, and storing your contact lenses. Many lens users prefer to use it solely for cleaning, disinfection and storage and instead opt for saline solution for rinsing.

Usage Tips:

  1. Follow the instructions on the bottle for cleaning, rinsing, and storing your lenses.

  2. Always use fresh solution and never top off old solution in the lens case.

Clear Care 3% Hydrogen Peroxide Solution with a special case for deep cleaning contact lenses. Ideal for sensitive eyes, it provides triple action cleaning, loosens dirt, and enhances protein removal. Follow instructions carefully to avoid eye irritation.

Hydrogen Peroxide Solution

This solution is used to disinfect your lenses. You can get it as a "one-step" or "two-step" system. In the "one-step" system, the solution comes with a special case containing a catalyzing disk. When you soak your contacts in the solution, the hydrogen peroxide gradually decomposes so it can no longer irritate your eyes when you finally wear the lens after a minimum of six hours of disinfection. In a "two-step" system, there is a "Step 2" solution that's used to neutralize the lens after you take it out of the hydrogen peroxide solution. Most people use the "one-step" system, particularly those with very sensitive eyes that easily become irritated.

Usage Tips:

  1. Only use the special case that comes with the hydrogen peroxide solution.

  2. Do not rinse lenses with hydrogen peroxide before inserting them into your eyes.

Bausch + Lomb Boston One Step Liquid Enzymatic Cleaner and Ultrazyme Enzymatic Cleaner for contact lenses. These cleaners remove protein deposits, maintaining lens comfort and preventing irritation. Use weekly and rinse thoroughly with saline solution afterward.

Enzymatic Cleaner

This solution is used to wash off the protein from cosmetic contact lenses. It is typically in tablet form and used on a weekly basis. The reason for using this weekly cleaner is that daily cleaners generally cannot completely prevent protein deposits, which increases the risk of eye damage.

Usage Tips:

  1. Use enzymatic cleaners once a week or as directed by your eye care professional.

  2. Rinse the lenses thoroughly with saline solution after using enzymatic cleaners.

Safety Tips for Wearing Circle Lenses

Close-up of a contact lens on a fingertip against a green background, illustrating safety tips for wearing circle lenses.

While circle lenses can be a safe and enjoyable way to change up your appearance, there are some important safety tips to keep in mind:

  1. Buy from Reputable Sources: Ensure that you are getting high-quality lenses that are safe for your eyes.

  2. Check Expiration Dates: Always check the expiration date on your circle lenses before using them.

  3. Clean and Disinfect: Clean and disinfect your circle lenses before each use to remove any bacteria or debris.

  4. Limit Wear Time: Never wear your circle lenses for longer than the recommended duration to prevent dry eyes, irritation, and potential cornea damage.

  5. Avoid Sharing: Do not share your circle lenses with others to prevent spreading bacteria and infection.

  6. Avoid During Infections: Avoid wearing circle lenses if you have any eye infections or injuries.

  7. Stop If Discomfort Occurs: If you experience any pain, discomfort, or vision changes while wearing circle lenses, stop wearing them immediately and see your eye doctor.

  8. Follow Doctor's Instructions: Be sure to follow the instructions provided by your eye doctor when wearing circle lenses.

Common Mistakes to Avoid

Illustration of common contact lens mistakes to avoid, including not using tap water, avoiding expired lenses, and not sleeping in lenses, to ensure eye health.

Avoid these common mistakes to ensure your eye health and lens longevity:

  1. Using Tap Water: Never use tap water or saliva to clean your lenses, as they can introduce harmful microorganisms.

  2. Ignoring Expiry Dates: Do not use lenses past their expiry dates, as they can become brittle and uncomfortable.

  3. Sleeping in Lenses: Avoid sleeping in lenses unless they are specifically designed for overnight wear.

Benefits of Proper Lens Care

Proper care and cleaning of your contact lenses offer several benefits:

  1. Prevents Infections: Regular cleaning removes harmful bacteria and debris.
  2. Maintains Comfort: Clean lenses are more comfortable to wear and reduce the risk of irritation.
  3. Ensures Clear Vision: Regular maintenance ensures your lenses remain clear and effective for vision correction.

Consultation with Eye Care Professionals

Illustration emphasizing the importance of consulting with eye care professionals for cosmetic contact lenses, obtaining a valid prescription, and ensuring comfort and safety through proper care and hygiene practices.

Importance of Consultation

Before purchasing cosmetic contact lenses, consult with an eye care professional to ensure they are safe for you to wear.

Getting a Valid Prescription

Obtain a valid prescription to ensure your lenses fit properly and comfortably. Your eye care professional can also provide recommendations based on your eye health.

Ensuring Comfort and Safety

Make sure the lenses you choose are comfortable and safe for daily wear. Follow proper hygiene practices to avoid any eye infections or discomfort.

If you truly want to maximize your enjoyment of cosmetic contact lenses, you have to clean and care for them properly. Follow the instructions provided with each solution and replace your lenses according to the schedule set by your eye doctor. Even if you don't have vision problems and are only using contacts for purely cosmetic reasons, remember that it's still important to go for regular eye examinations.

By following these guidelines, you can ensure your cosmetic contact lenses remain comfortable and safe to use. Proper care not only extends the life of your lenses but also protects your eye health. Remember, while lenses can be replaced, your eyes are irreplaceable.

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Contributor

The information in this post and all EyeCandys blog content is intended for informational and marketing purposes only and should not be taken as medical advice. EyeCandys does not offer professional healthcare advice or practice medicine, optometry, or any other healthcare profession. Always consult with your ophthalmologist, optometrist or a qualified healthcare provider for any medical advice, diagnosis, treatment, or questions regarding a medical condition.