The best camera lens cleaner

Camera & Photo

Keep reusable cleaning instruments and tools as clean as possible and stored safely. While camera lens cleaning equipment can be used for cleaning other lenses and items, try to have dedicated camera cleaning supplies.

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Which camera lens cleaner is best?

There are different methods of cleaning a camera lens depending on how dirty it is. For basic maintenance, special equipment isn’t necessary to keep the lens free of mild debris, dust and accidental fingerprints.

The Altura Photo Professional Camera Cleaning Kit is the top choice if you need a complete all-in-one lens cleaning kit with everything necessary to get started. It contains many tools and a fluid solution for efficiently cleaning a camera lens and more.

What to know before you buy a camera lens cleaner

What type of camera lens cleaner do you need?

There are different methods of cleaning lenses, so there are plenty of options. Cloths, brushes and special pens allow for wiping away dry dust and particles. Liquid cleaner fluid can be useful for a thorough clean of smudges and fingerprints. 

How dirty is your lens?

If you have a particularly dirty camera lens that needs cleaning and potential repair, you need a serious, heavy-duty cleaning solution. Microfiber cloth is good for upkeep and maintenance, but using only a piece of cloth won’t solve a very oily and filthy lens. For everyday maintenance and cleaning when you put a camera lens away for the day, look for cleaning kits that help keep your gear in top shape before it gets too dirty.

What is the quality of your lens?

If you’re more worried about getting a clear picture and the price of a replacement lens isn’t a problem, you can use most lens cleaning products. If you use a very high-quality and expensive lens, be careful to only use camera lens cleaners that are safe for your gear. Causing damage while trying to clear dust and debris is the last thing you want.

What to look for in a quality camera lens cleaner

Efficiency

Microfiber cloths and brush pens can be used to carefully wipe and sweep away minor particles, but serious smudges and fingerprints may necessitate a liquid cleaning solution. Look for cleaning solutions that won’t harm a camera lens. The best options are cleaners that are specifically designed for a camera lens.

Portability

It’s great to have high-quality cleaning supplies, but you can’t use them if they aren’t nearby. You can keep additional camera lens cleaners and products at home while having a portable kit for lens cleaning with your camera. Store liquid cleaner in a small bottle and cloths, swabs and more in a small, clean case that can come with the camera everywhere. 

Options

The best camera cleaning kits have different options for cleaning. Don’t whip out an expensive cleaning spray and completely wash a lens every time a little dust comes in contact; have the right tool for every job and only touch or wipe a lens when absolutely needed. Ideally, you shouldn’t need to use lens cleaners often.

How much you can expect to spend on camera lens cleaner

You can find a complete lens cleaning kit to get started for about $10-$30. Individual lens cleaning solutions, cloths and other products can be purchased on their own for less than $15.

Camera lens cleaner FAQ

How often should a camera lens be cleaned?

A. It depends on how often it’s used. If you rarely use your camera and check for dirt or smudges on the lens when you do, it should be fine to only clean it as you feel the need. If you’re using a camera often, you may need to clean more frequently. If you accidentally touch your lens or it comes in contact with anything, go ahead and use a cleaning solution to thoroughly clean it off. Avoid cleaning when there’s no need because repeated touching (even with cleaning supplies) makes scratches and damage more likely. 

Can you use glass cleaner for a camera lens?

A. No, you shouldn’t use household cleaners, even those intended for glass. Acetone isn’t good because it can damage the plastic and paint on the barrel of a lens in addition to the optical coatings. When it’s necessary to use a fluid solution, use only alcohol, deionized water and various dedicated lens cleaners.

What’s the best camera lens cleaner to buy?

Top camera lens cleaner

Altura Photo Professional Camera Cleaning Kit

Altura Photo Professional Camera Cleaning Kit

Our take: This kit has multiple high-quality cleaning supplies that professional photographers need for their camera lens care.

What you’ll love: The carrying case allows for convenient organization and transport. The kit includes six cleaning swabs, microfiber cloths, a cleaning pen, a brush, an air blower and an all-natural fluid cleaning solution for lenses and camera sensors. Everything in the kit is designed to be safe for electronics and can thoroughly clean a dirty or dusty lens.

What you should consider: The carrying case is a bit bulky, and some users had issues with the included swabs leaving streaks.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon

Top camera lens cleaner for the money

CamKix Professional Camera Cleaning Kit

CamKix Professional Camera Cleaning Kit

Our take: This affordable kit is a great starter set because it comes with many useful tools for lens cleaning.

What you’ll love: It contains a retractable pen with two brush ends. The included air blower clears dust and debris from the edges of the lens. The spray bottle can be filled and refilled with any cleaning solution. The kit has many lens tissues, reusable microfiber cleaning cloths and an additional brush. It comes with a 1-year product guarantee.

What you should consider: It doesn’t come with a liquid spray cleaning solution, so users must fill the included bottle with the cleaner of their choice, appropriate for their chosen lenses.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon

Worth checking out

Nikon LensPen Cleaning System

Nikon LensPen Cleaning System

Our take: The cleaning pens allow for a precise cleaning of lens surfaces, as well as removing fingerprints and dust.

What you’ll love: The pen tool has multiple cleaning functions and can serve as a substitute for cloths and air blowers to clean off a camera lens. It doesn’t use liquid solution for cleaning, just a soft tip and a brush tip. It’s compact and easily added to a travel case or backpack to bring along with a camera.

What you should consider: The quality of cleaning can go down after multiple uses of the pen. While it can be used as an easily portable substitute for other cleaning methods, it may be best to not solely rely on the cleaning pens.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon

 

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Elliott Rivette writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.

 

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