How To Clean Your iPhone Camera Lens

Cleaning Iphone Camera

If your iPhone’s camera lens is dirty or smudged, you will get a blurry image whenever you take a picture with it. You may intuitively grab a shirt to clean it to get a clearer shot. However, doing this might worsen the case as you expose the lens to scratches. So, what better way to clean your iPhone’s camera lens? 

Quick Answer

There are different ways to clean an iPhone camera lens depending on whether it is minor or very stubborn dirt or smudge. If it is a minor dust particle, use a dust blower. But if it is a smear, use a microfiber cloth and some isopropyl alcohol.  

The external clear window of an iPhone’s camera lens is covered with sapphire crystal for protection. Generally, the sapphire crystal on the iPhone’s camera lens is difficult to scratch; it’s important to use appropriate cleaning material.

This article elaborates more on how to clean an iPhone camera lens.

Different Ways To Clean Your iPhone Camera Lens 

When you hear the word cleaning, what comes to mind is soap and water. But while iPhones are IP rated, submerging your iPhone in any cleaning agent isn’t recommended. The IP ratings on iPhones are different. The iPhone 7, 7+, 8, 8+ X, XR, and the 2nd gen SE are all IP67-rated. While iPhone Xs, XS Max, and other newer models are IP68-rated

Also, when you want to clean the camera lens, you should avoid using any substance with hydrogen peroxide or bleaching agents. Below are a few different methods to clean the camera lens.  

Method #1: Dust Blower 

When there is dust on your iPhone’s camera lens, it’s recommended to use a dust blower to prevent scratches. You can purchase a dust blower from most hardware stores near you, but ensure you opt for a dust blower without added chemicals to disperse the dust particles. 

Although your iPhone’s camera lens is durable, you don’t want to risk breaking the lens as the compressed air can be strong. Hence, blowing the air a few inches away from the lens is advisable. And always hold the dust blower upright, not at an angle or upside down. 

Method #2: Microfiber Cloth

Another option you have is to use a microfiber cloth. Using a microfiber cloth to clean your iPhone’s camera lens is lint-free and will easily wipe off dust, fogginess, fingerprint, and stains with no residue. 

Also, the texture of a microfiber cloth is ultra-soft with fine grain, which makes it ideal for cleaning the lens as it doesn’t scratch the lens. While a microfiber cloth is soft, you should not substitute it for soft tissues like Kleenex. 

Method #3: Using Liquids  

If there is a dried or stubborn smudge on your iPhone’s camera lens, you should incorporate a liquid in your cleaning process to soften it so it’s easy to wipe off. In such cases, using a Q-tip dipped in 70% isopropyl alcohol will help get the job done. 

Alternatively, you can use 75% ethyl alcohol or Clorox disinfecting wipes to clean the lens. An advantage of using this liquid over other liquids to clean your lens is that they have disinfectant properties that kill bacteria that may be lodged around the lens. 

Method #4: Professional Servicing

Suppose the dirt or smudge is trapped below the camera lens or hard to remove, even with a dust blower, microfiber cloth, or isopropyl. In that case, you’d need to book an appointment with an Apple technician for assistance. 

If your iPhone warranty is still valid, then contacting Apple might help slash the amount you will pay. Note that the Apple warranty does not cover accidental damage to the camera lens. 

Quick Tip

Using an iPhone case can help protect your iPhone’s camera lens and back glass from damage.


If your iPhone’s camera lens is dirty, ensure you clean it with the appropriate material to prevent scratches. If the lens is etched, cleaning it wouldn’t solve the problem. In this case, you have to visit a professional technician to have it replaced. Also, if the dirt is lodged under the lens, you should allow the professionals to fix it. Overall, it would help if you kept your iPhone’s camera lens clean and the iPhone in a clean area.  

Frequently Asked Questions 

How do I remove condensation from my iPhone’s camera lens? 

When your iPhone’s camera appears condensed, it’s because moisture has managed to penetrate the housing. Getting rid of it can be difficult as you can’t simply wipe it off from the exterior. The easiest way to remove condensation from your iPhone’s camera lens is to place the phone in an airtight container with silica gel. Set the case aside for at least 24 hours for the silica gel packages to absorb the moisture. 

If the condensed moisture doesn’t disappear, you should take your phone to a technician to fix it. Do not keep your phone in the sun or near a fire to cause the moisture to evaporate. 

Is using straight alcohol bad for my iPhone? 

Using straight alcohol to clean the camera lens might kill the bacteria, but the alcohol reacts with the hydrophobic and oleophobic coating, stripping it off. Over time, your iPhone will no longer repel water and oil from its display and other ports.  

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