How to Avoid Scratches on the Phone Screen?

how to avoid scratches on the screen

Updated: August 15, 2023

The screen of modern smartphones is covered with wear-resistant glass. At the same time, after some time of operation, the surface of the glass is covered with scratches. This article will learn why the screen is scratched, as well as how to protect the screen and prevent scratches.

Why do scratches appear on the screen

Scratches are formed due to damage to the surface of the glass in contact with materials of superior strength. According to the Mohs scale, the hardness of the screen glass is usually 5-6 units, and the hardness of quartz on the same scale is 7 units. Therefore, the glass is easily scratched by an abrasive in the form of quartz grains, as well as hard or sharp steel objects.

The reason for such a low wear resistance of glass is a shift in the balance towards strength. What leads to the annual growth of the diagonal, the release of devices with curved screens, as well as the request of mobile electronics manufacturers to reduce the thickness of the glass. As a result, glass manufacturers strengthen the chemical hardening of products or introduce polymer materials, which increases strength at the expense of wear resistance. Otherwise, the glass is brittle and a fall from a meter height is guaranteed to lead to destruction.

How to protect your screen

Protective accessories in the form of films, glasses or closed cases will help to eliminate the appearance of scratches on the screen. Each type of accessory has different protective properties, as well as contains certain advantages and disadvantages.

Protective film

It is a glossy or matte PET film. Due to its low thickness, the film is virtually invisible on the screen, which is suitable for smartphone owners who avoid installing protective accessories. It also does not interfere with the operation of the built-in fingerprint scanner, does not impair the display of information and the sensitivity of the sensor.

Protective film
Protective film.

At the same time, the PET film has low protective properties. The film will cope with abrasive quartz grains, but contact with sharp and strong objects leads to the destruction of the protective coating. And any other mechanical energy – a blow with a solid object or a fall on a hard surface-is not delayed and is transmitted to the screen. In addition, the surface of the film is quickly covered with scratches, since the hardness on the Mohs scale does not exceed 1-2 units. Therefore, when the smartphone is actively used, the film will require frequent replacement.

Hydrogel film

Polymer analog of PET film with similar capabilities and protective properties. Out of the distinctive features:

  • Simplified installation on the screen.
  • Resorption of accumulated air bubbles.
  • Restoration of the coating.

The surface of the hydrogel film is covered with scratches in a short time, similar to conventional PET film. At the same time, the polymers in the coating gradually tighten the scratches. Shallow scratches disappear or become difficult to distinguish, and deep scratches are less noticeable. Due to this property, the protective coating will require less frequent replacement.

Tempered glass.

The protective coating is also often referred to as tempered glass due to pre-thermal or chemical quenching. This treatment gives the glass increased strength under mechanical stress, providing high protection of the screen when hit by a strong object or falling. The strength on the Mohs scale is on average 4-5 units, which is comparable to the glass of the screen module of many phones. Therefore, the glass surface is less susceptible to scratches.

tempered glass
Tempered glass.

The thickness of the protective coating is 5-10 times thicker than the film, which makes the glass more visible. For this reason, many users refuse to install glass or prefer PET film. The thickness of the glass does not impair the display of information or the sensitivity of the sensor. At the same time, the fingerprint scanners built into the screen do not work with glass.

Protective cover

On sale there are various cases with screen protection, which are an additional overlay. The most common variation is a book cover, with a completely closed cover or with cutouts. Cut-out options allow you to not open the case to answer the call, thanks to the presence of slots for interaction.

There are also closed cases of two halves. In the first, the phone is attached with the back side, after which the device is installed with the front side in the second half. The availability of a soft cloth on the front half allows you to automatically clean the screen, and the mount on the back side allows you to fix the phone on the belt for comfortable wearing.

Smartphone owners often prefer not to glue the film or glass, relying only on the protection of the case, which the accessory is not designed for. Under mechanical action, the half covering the screen will take all or part of the energy. Therefore, contact with large objects like keys or coins will not harm the screen. But to resist abrasive grains of sand will not work, because in such cases there are always several holes for unhindered access to the surface of the screen.

How to prevent scratches on the phone screen

A few recommendations that will help reduce the appearance of scratches on the screen in the presence or absence of protective accessories:

  • Carry your smartphone only in a free individual pocket of your clothing or bag.
  • Do not allow abrasive grains of sand to enter the pocket. Clean your pocket as often as possible.
  • Do not carry various items with your phone: keys, money, cards, flash drives, styluses, etc.
  • When removing the device from the pocket of your bag or clothing, avoid rubbing the screen with zippers or rivets.
  • Do not attach plastic or metal accessories that can touch the screen to your smartphone.
  • Use a soft microfiber cloth to clean the screen. Do not wipe the screen on your clothes.
  • Avoid contact with the screen with your fingernails or jewelry on your fingers.
  • Do not put the phone face down.

Why do phone screens scratch so easily?

This is the current technology of tempered glass production. On the one hand, they try to make it as hard and strong as possible, but on the other hand, although the glass can withstand a strong impact and not break, it can be scratched with a sharp object. Keys, coins, abrasive particles like sand in your pocket or bag cause small scratches on your phone’s screen. Over time, scratches increase in size and number.

How to get rid of scratches on phone?

You can get rid of scratches on your phone by polishing or grinding with abrasive paste. Polishing is used to remove small scratches. Surface grinding is used for deep scratches, and then polishing is done to remove small scratches. The paste used is a soft or hard diamond-based compound. Since diamond is the hardest material on the Mohs scale, diamond paste is suitable for polishing all types of surfaces: glass, ceramics, plastic and polycarbonate, metal and various metal alloys.

Read more in the article How to get rid of scratches on phone?

How to Remove Scratches From a Phone Case?

To remove scratches on most covers, polishing and buffing is used. These operations often use polishing paste of different abrasiveness, such as diamond polishing paste. The polishing process removes minor scratches. If the scratches are deep, polishing is done in several steps. First the coating is ground with a coarse paste, then an intermediate compound, and finally the phone case is polished with a mild compound to remove the finest scratches.

Read more in the article How to Remove Scratches From a Phone Case?

How do I Remove Scratches from My Phone Screen?

Small scratches can be hidden under a protective film or tempered glass. If this method is not acceptable, you can polish the phone glass. Polishing pastes effectively remove small scratches. And deep scratches are removed in several stages by grinding and polishing. Hard or soft pastes with diamond crystals are used for such tasks. Sometimes chromium oxide-based pastes are used to treat fragile types of glass.

Read more in the article How do I Remove Scratches from My Phone Screen?

When trying to remove scratches from your phone screen, it’s important to set your expectations accordingly. Small, surface-level scratches can probably be buffed away, but any deep cracks can’t be treated this way.



How to get rid of scratches on the phone screen?

By installing tempered glass, a protective film or a 360-degree cover.

How to reduce scratches on the phone screen?

If you glue toughened glass, scratches will be less noticeable.

How to prevent scratches on a phone without a screen protector?

Use a closed case. Do not put the phone in a bag or pocket with sharp objects, as well as in places where there is sand.

What can I use instead of a screen protector?

Fully protective whole phone case covering the front side of the phone.

What is the best phone screen protector?

Screen protectors made by ZAGG, Ailun, amFilm, Supershieldz or IQ Shield.

How do I stop my phone screen from breaking?

Install the tempered glass and use a sturdy case with the ability to protect the front of the phone.

Will a glass screen protector hide scratches?

If the scratches are not deep, installing glass will help hide the scratches.

Does toothpaste actually get rid of scratches?

In some cases, the abrasive particles inside the paste help erase small scratches. In some phones, the paste can make the condition worse and make even more scratches.

Is it normal to have scratches on your phone?

Scratches are inevitable when using your phone. However, careful use and the use of protective accessories help to avoid severe scratches and other serious damage.

Should I worry about phone scratches?

Scratches on your phone are not pleasant and spoil its appearance. In addition, deep scratches and chips can turn into cracks and lead to the destruction of the phone.

Does phone scratches affect performance?

No, they don’t. However, scratches can affect the operation of the fingerprint scanner built into the screen.


The article describes in detail how not to scratch the phone screen. The most effective solution is to install a protective glass. The accessory will eliminate the formation of scratches, as well as give additional strength to the screen. If the glass is not suitable, install a protective or hydrogel film.

What questions do you have? Leave messages in the comments at the bottom of the article.

Tags: scratches

About the author

Alex Gustman

My name is Alexander.
I am the author of articles, reviews and videos on the YouTube channel of I have been testing various electronic devices, mobile games and Android applications since 2012.

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