How to Clean Your Smartphone Screen Correctly (Without Having to Buy Anything!)

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Do you know that your smartphone is dirtier than this?

Image: Naret Kongkasem / Shutterstock.com

But you already know that, and chances are, you don’t care. Based on the updated Maslow’s hierarchy of needs that’s endorsed by Goody Feed, the most important need is your smartphone. You can go through an entire day without food or water, but you can’t survive for more than five minutes without your phone.

And I bet you’d have heard this classic sentence from Ministry of Health’s director of medical services on how to fight COVID-19: “You may want to make sure you that you clean the surfaces of your phone as well, as you touch it.”

Since a crisis would usually build good habits in us, now’s the good time for us to relook at how we treat our phone.

Now, if you prefer to watch this topic, here’s a video we’ve done for this:

(Also check out our YouTube channel for more informative and entertaining videos!)

Prefer to read? Well, so, how do we clean our phone?

For the hoarders who have stocked up countless detergent last week, you can feel free to soak your phone in a pail of Coke and pour in 10L of detergent. People like you don’t deserve a phone.

And for the rest of us…

How to NOT Clean Your Smartphone Screen

Now, before learning how to clean it, you must know what you shouldn’t do.

Here are a few things you shouldn’t use to clean your phone:

Don’t Use Window Cleaner or Any Kitchen Cleaner + Newspaper

I won’t blame you for this: after all, our phone screen looks like a glass.

But that’s not a goody idea. The reason is that the cleaner would have an abrasive agent, so it could lead your phone to be more vulnerable to scratches. So read your The Straits Times and use your windows or kitchen cleaners for something else instead.

Don’t Use Paper Towels or Tissue Paper

I don’t know how many times I’d need to say this, but I’ll say this again: paper towels (or tissue paper) are for your hands. It’s not the go-to for your phone and to many people, for your glasses.


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These would leave scratches on the surface, so even if you don’t mind scratches on your glasses, you’d mind having them on your precious phone.

Don’t Use Alcohol or Disinfectants

Bet you didn’t expect this, right?

While they kill germs, they’ll also “kill off” the protective layer on your phone. This includes hydrophobic, a water-repellent coating, which would lead to consequences you won’t want to know.

So drink your alcohol and sell your disinfectants at a high price online instead of using them on your phone.

Don’t Use Soap and Water

Technically speaking, this is goody but there’s just one problem: whether your phone is water-resistant or not, your phone’s not made to be a Joseph Schooling. A little water is fine but washing it like you’re washing your hands? Prepare to buy a new phone—though you’d have a clean phone lah.

So, now you know what you shouldn’t do, what’s the best way to clean your smartphone?


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How to Clean Your Smartphone Screen

If you’re really serious about cleaning your phone, then you should invest in a phone cleaning kit.

If you’re on a budget, you can get one for less than $20 per kit online, which usually comprise a microfiber cloth and a bottle of cleaner.  These kits can be used to clean other screens as well, like your laptop screen or your TV. I’d say that it’s a worthy investment if you intend to make cleaning a habit.

Image: amazon.com

If you’ve got many commas in your bank account, then you may want to buy a slightly more expensive kit, like a sterilizer whereby all you need to do is to put your phone in it and let the sterilizer do its job.

Image: amazon.sg


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But I know why you’re here: you’re looking for a home remedy. You want to read this article, clean it once and forget about it altogether. I totally get you.

Here’s the thing: if you bothered to read the instruction manual of your phone (you do know it still exists, don’t you?), there’s usually a page that tells you how to clean your phone. But different manufacturers give different advice: so here’s the general one that works for all phones:

Use a microfiber cloth and a little water.

“But I want a quick fix,” you said. “How the heck can I find a microfiber cloth in my house?”

Oh, you have it.


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I’m sure you, or someone in your household, need to wear glasses. Whenever you purchase a new pair of glasses, it’ll come with a small microfiber cloth.

I bet you didn’t know that you should clean your glasses the same way you clean your phone, eh?

To clean your phone, a wipe with the microfiber wouldn’t suffice; instead, what you need to do is to damp the microfiber cloth a little and give your screen a good wipe, ensuring that water doesn’t end up on the side of the phone.

After that, using another dry microfiber cloth to wipe it. You can use this dry microfiber cloth to clean the sides of the phone, as microfiber cloth can actually attach dirt particles by itself.

It’s really that simple.


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Some phone manufacturers, like the Google Pixel, even suggests using soap, though that’s totally optional.

What if I Don’t Have a Micofiber Cloth at Home?

Well, first of all, congrats: you’re one of the few in Singapore doesn’t know how inconvenient it is to wear a pair of glasses.

Secondly, take a look at your laptop, camera or TV boxes; sometimes, the manufacturer would provide one for free.

If not, you can just go online to buy one; they cost less than $2 a piece depending on the sizes.

Or you can just ask your photographer friend if they’ve any extra. These clothes are used to clean their lens and they usually have lots of them at home.


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