Among my photo equipment, perhaps the most critical accessory is also the simplest … something to clean lenses and filters. For this purpose, the microfiber cloth is the preferred tool.
Microfiber cleaning cloth for optical usage (cameras, eyeglasses, electronic display screens, etc) have become ubiquitous. Lint-less, will not scratch, washable, and reusable. Technically, the term “microfiber” simply means the fabric is woven from thread having a diameter smaller than 1 denier, smaller than silk thread. (Different brands may use different size threads.)
Microfiber cleaning cloths are availabe in patterns, colors, and even with detailed images on the cloth. You can get your own image custom printed onto the cloth.
Tip#1 – Use plain white. It shows dirt and you will visibly see when it needs to be cleaned. Anything other than white will obscure dirt.
Tip#2 – Select a cloth that has no hems or tags. Potentially dirt can get trapped in the stitching.
Tip#3 – Hand wash. You can try machine washing, just place the cloth in a lingerie bag so it does not get sucked down the drain. However, my experience is that this does not do a very good job. Hand wash with a light detergent such as Woolite. Rinse multple times to ensure all detergent is removed.
Tip#4 – Have more than one available in your photo bag. They are small and inexpensive. If one cloth seems dirty, maybe not cleaning well, you will have another available as back-up.