How to Clean Your Smartphone and Tech Devices Like a Pro

As much as we hate to think about it, our phones are disgusting. In fact, all of the technology we use on a regular basis is covered in germs. You may have heard the statistic that “cellphones carry 10 times more bacteria than most toilet seats” and chosen to ignore that information, but sadly, it’s true. Frankly, it makes sense, considering most of us have our smartphones glued to our grubby little hands at all times (including time spent scrolling TikTok on the toilet). Think about it: Would you eat something after using the bathroom (without washing your hands)? Absolutely not. (Hopefully…)

This begs the question: Why do we continue to rub our devices against our hands and face without disinfecting them first? Probably because you don’t even know how to clean your phone… until now, that is. If the thought of over 17,000 bacterial gene copies on your phone doesn’t make you want to drop your phone in the nearest tub of disinfectant, just know we’re judging you. Heed the tips and tricks for disinfecting your tech and let this article’s advice be the end of any grubby, germy gear. 

Cleaning your phone, computer, and tablets 

While there are a few subtle differences between Apple, Google, and Samsung devices, they can all—for the most part—be disinfected with cleaning wipes or sprays that are made from at least 70% isopropyl alcohol. That said, every brand agrees that it’s a bad idea to spray your device directly. Instead, spray the cleanser onto a lint-free cloth (either microfiber or a lens cloth) before wiping down your phone, tablet, or computer. 


Microfiber Cleaning Cloth, 6 Pack

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Amazon Basics

Microfiber Cleaning Cloths

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Care Touch

Individually Wrapped Alcohol Prep Pads

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$15.05$9.98 at Amazon

All of these brands unanimously warn against using products containing bleach and hydrogen peroxide, and to make sure that you power down and unplug your devices before cleaning. 

Step one is to wipe down your device with just a small amount of water on a cleaning cloth, paying close attention not to get any extra moisture into openings. Absolutely never submerge it, even if the device is “waterproof.” 

After the aforementioned wipe down, you can go in with a disinfecting wipe to get rid of germs and fingerprints. If you’re lazy, you can always opt for a PhoneSoap device that uses UV light to sanitize your phone and give it a 360-degree clean as it charges. Think of it as a little private spa (or anti-germ panic room) for your best friend, your iPhone. 

$59.99$54.95 at Amazon

Cleaning your keyboard and mouse

When was the last time you cleaned your laptop? Never? Just think of how many millions of germs are crawling across your spacebar right now [shudders]. Thinking of grabbing one of those cans of keyboard cleaner? The only time it’s safe to use compressed air is when you’re blasting crumbs (of Oreos and weed) out from your USB ports, wireless keyboard, or mouse. If you have a laptop, stay away from spraying the whole device with anything—including compressed air—and instead use a slightly damp microfiber cloth or dry Q-tips to get into all those tiny crevices. 


Disposable Compressed Gas Duster

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Quanzhou Chenchenchen

Natural Paper Cotton Swabs 500ct

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Cleaning your headphones and earbuds

It probably goes without saying that you want to avoid getting any moisture inside of your headphones, or you’ll risk jeopardizing the sound quality. If they’re physically dirty (like, on the exterior) you can use a bit of fresh water on a cloth, but make sure they are completely dry before using again. The best homebrew method for cleaning inside a pair of headphones is using dry Q-tips or a toothbrush… or you can buy an all-in-one cleaning kit on amazon for cheap. 


Multi-Function Cleaner Kit

$19.99$9.99 at Amazon

Stop bringing your phone into the bathroom, OK? Promise?

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