A few years ago when I was working in marketing for a large optical corporation we used to laugh about “mother-in-law” research. In order to make advertising claims or write white papers about our products, or even make decisions to change our products or processes we did statistically based research on a regular basis. We did this to remove bias and provide significant quantity of responses in order to make sound decisions. We hired outside firms to contact hundreds of customers and consumers by focus group, mail, email and telephone to preserve anonymity.

But the reality in an ECP office is that what your mother-in-law, sister, or colleague says about their eyewear or products probably carries more weight than it should – but it is often the only feedback we get or trust.

I’m chuckling to myself as I write this review of Nanofilm products because I’m going to give you some “mother-in-law” research from my husband and myself on these products.

Right up front, I want you to know that the Nanofilm company is a sponsor of the Optician’s Handbook. I didn’t know much about their products first hand so of course I went to their website and read all their materials which intrigued me to want to try a few of their products myself. I ordered three items: DEFOG it Anti-Fog Kit, Ultra Clarity lens cleaner and Clarity Clean It lens cleaner.

The easiest was trying the lens cleaners since I’ve only cleaned about a million pairs of lenses in my days in this industry. Both lens cleaners, Ultra Clarity an Clarity Clean It were nice products and do a good job of cleaning quickly and easily. I also liked that it is a gentle cleaner chemically formulated to gently remove body oils without damage to anti-reflectant coatings. Based on only a few experiences I preferred the Ultra Clairty lens cleaner. During this trial it occurred to me that we provide expensive eyewear to our patients and don’t always take enough time to talk about how to take care of them. The packaging is attractive and provides a nice looking and good resale product.

The big test was the DEFOG it. I had a predisposed idea that it would be difficult to apply evenly and wouldn’t hold up well under multiple cleanings. Last weekend my husband was going out to play volleyball for the afternoon and I applied DEFOG it to his sport sunglasses (Brown polarized lenses with backside AR). I was sure Mr. Skeptical Engineer would be a discerning tester for DEFOG it. I was planning to do a lot of cooking that day and applied it on my glasses to see how it would work with the fog created on the lenses when opening the oven.

To my surprise DEFOG it was amazingly easy to apply. It was a little viscous but not too thick at to spread the few drops easily with my fingers over the lens. Using the microfiber cloth enclosed it I quickly and easily buffed the lens to be very clear.

When my husband came home after five hours of volleyball he reported the DEFOG it had worked well. “No fogging up”, but his glasses were filthy and required a good cleaning. I had actually forgotten about the coating on my glasses as I was cooking and opening and closing the oven door - with no fogging up. I hate it when I have a scalding hot dish to bring out of the oven and my vision is completely obscured by fogging lenses.

I just checked with my husband three weeks later and he said the anti-fog coating was still working, so that would be after 15 hours of abuse from sand, sun and sweat on the volleyball court. Not exactly a scientific test for coating longevity; but we decided it was worth applying the DEFOG it as often as needed because it was so easy to apply and we appreciated the results.

Mother–in-law research or not, I can wholeheartedly recommend these products and will purchase them again.

Mindi Lewis, MA, ABOC, FNAO, is an industry professional with experience from exam room and dispensing table to marketing and national account management. She has an AS in Optometric Technology, a BS in Allied Health Education, and was an Optometric Technology Instructor at St. Petersburg College, Florida. She has worked for SOLA Optical, Carl Zeiss Vision and Essilor, and is currently a consultant and speaker, and Managing Editor for Jobson Medical Information's Opticians Handbook. To contact: [email protected]