At the office. At the supermarket. At the gym. The face mask is now commonplace – and also mandatory – around the world as humanity works to overcome the threat of COVID-19. For glasses wearers, however, face masks create an unexpected discomfort: foggy lenses.

It doesn’t matter how many times you clean your lenses; the problem isn’t your glasses, it’s the mask itself.

“Foggy lenses are caused by a poor-fitting mask,” explains Dr. Vivienne Velasco of iFocus Vision Center in Las Vegas. “If the area of the mask is not fit tightly around your nose and cheeks, your breath will escape from the top and cause foggy lenses.”

Here are Dr. Velasco’s tips on avoiding foggy lenses.

Choose Your Mask Carefully

Face masks became a major fashion accessory in 2020, with major brands jumping in to create their own styles – everything from camo to sequins. But Dr. Velasco warns that not all masks are made for glasses wearers.

“You want to wear a mask that can be pinched around the nose,” she says. “A face mask that has a metal, adjustable insert works best.”

In that case, your best option for reducing foggy lenses would be a face mask similar to those worn by medical professionals, as opposed to a simple cloth fashion mask. You could also try a DIY fix and tape your mask on the nose and cheeks to prevent your breath from escaping.

Adjust the Position of Your Glasses

The positioning of your glasses on your face can also make a difference when it comes to foggy lenses. Dr. Velasco recommends making sure that your glasses sit over the top of the mask, with no gaps between your nose and cheeks.

“You can also pull your frames a little farther away from your face, down your nose,” she says. “But this may not work with some prescriptions, especially high prescriptions, bifocal or progressive glasses.”

Try Anti-Fog Lenses

You could purchase a defogging spray to keep your lenses clean, but might be happier with anti-fog lenses. These lenses are treated with a substance that repels droplets and prevents condensation from forming on the surface of the lens.

Soap and Water

Another do-it-yourself fix involves washing your lenses with soapy water and letting them dry so a soapy film coats the lens. This can prevent your lenses from fogging up, but at the same time it leaves you with a soapy film on your lenses. If that’s interfering with your vision, you should probably search for another solution.

iFocus Vision Center remains open with strict guidelines in place to protect patients and staff members. Patients with an urgent need are seen by appointment only, and iFocus offers curbside pickup for eyeglasses or contact lens refills. To schedule an appointment, contact us at 702-473-5660.