From spills to scratches, our phones go through a veritable gauntlet of trials, and, unfortunately, sometimes they don’t make it out unscathed.
A deep scratch on your phone screen is unsightly and annoying, especially if you can feel it mar the otherwise pristine, glossy surface as your finger glides over it. We’re willing to bet that most phones out there contain a spider web of micro-scratches that aren’t always immediately apparent.
But don’t lose hope yet! There are a few trusty methods you could try if you’re wondering how to remove scratches from your phone touch screen.
Read on to find out the details, but consider these techniques carefully, as each comes with its own set of risks and is not recommended for every type of scratch.
4 Ways to Get Rid of Scratches on Your Phone
1. Glass Polish
This method might be in the sweet spot of value and effectiveness. It uses a product specifically designed for scratch removal. Glass polish, available for watch cases, car windows, and yes, smartphones, has very mild abrasive properties that gently polish the surface as you rub. Several kits are available online and in stores with everything you need for the delicate job of polishing your phone’s screen, including large buffing pads and smaller detailing devices that are ideal for corners.
Polish may seem to be removing scratches, but removing the surface around the scratches reduces the thickness of the entire sheet of glass. Many micro-scratches will disappear entirely, and deeper scratches will, at the very least, become less noticeable.
Keep in mind that most phone screens have an oleophobic coating on them (an oil-resistant coating that reduces fingerprints). Over-polishing runs the risk of entirely removing this coating, so don’t go overboard with any abrasive method.
If you don’t want to spend the money on a glass polish kit, you might consider raiding your bathroom cabinet for toothpaste. Make sure you’re using a normal, non-gel variety. Like glass polish, toothpaste is a mild abrasive. Consider targeting specific scratches with a soft cloth, rather than slathering toothpaste all over your screen, and be sure to cover any ports or openings that you don’t want to get that minty paste in.
The internet is lousy with varying accounts of toothpaste’s effectiveness on scratches, so attempt at your own risk. Other common household items, such as magic erasers, baking soda, and bananas, are recommended by some, but we’re deeming them too abrasive (and weird) to be worth the risk of dealing more serious damage to your phone.
3. Replace the Screen
Sometimes, a phone screen is just too deeply scratched to be effectively polished out or filled in. If you have AppleCare, it’s extremely affordable to just get your iPhone screen replaced at any Apple Store. Android users are not so lucky, but warranty programs do exist. Of course, not all of us have those programs, so it is possible to get your phone replaced at a mall kiosk or, in some cases, at a service provider store. These services can range from double to triple digits in cost, though.
A quick web search for your phone model plus “screen replacement kit” will also yield far less expensive results, but the process is not for the faint of heart. Removing your old screen involves a fair amount of prying, ultra-sticky glue, and keeping track of tiny screws and cables. Getting all that stuff packed back in where it goes is no small task. Many kits include small tools that aid in the job, and we’d also recommend a magnifying glass. The results of a brand-new screen can do wonders to update a device, though.
4. Get a Screen Protector!
You know the best way to get rid of scratches? Prevent them from happening in the first place!
Our ZeroDamage Tempered Glass screen protectors do exactly what their name suggests: Allow Zero Damage to occur. It’s the very affordable (and scratch-resistant) protector that takes all the punishment, leaving your screen pristine. An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure, as they say.
Scratches Be Gone!
Whether our methods above work for you, be it glass polish, toothpaste, or some other weird solution, it’s a good idea to outfit your phone with a quality screen protector.
That means a tempered glass protector, precision-cut for your device, with gently beveled edges and an oleophobic coating. Check out our online store for an entire range of screen protectors (and companion cases) that fit the bill for your favorite device.