I Can See Clearly Now: Simple Tricks for Defogging Bathroom Mirrors
It’s one of the most common minor household difficulties: You’re fresh out of the shower, either looking to admire your work after washing your hair or keen to get in the mirror to shave while your skin and hair are still nice and pliable, and you’re greeted by an opaque surface of gray fog that reflects only the mist in your bathroom. You wipe it away with your towel only for it to reappear by the time you’ve hung it back on the rack.
When you are in absolute need of a mirror at the moment, having yours fog over can seem like the most frustrating thing in the world. Of course, a fogged bathroom mirror is a minor annoyance that can be solved through natural means and household dexterity as well as by technological measures such as heated mirrors, but understanding the solutions starts with understanding the process.
Why Does My Mirror Fog Up?
The fog on your bathroom mirror is caused by an effect known as condensation, a process by which moisture is extracted from the air by its decreasing temperatures. Rapidly falling air temperatures cause condensation because cool air holds less water than warm air, and the balance is deposited on any available surface.
This is the exact process that brings us a storm when a hot air mass meets with a cold air mass, and as a result the annoying haze that appears on your bathroom is essentially weather at work on a small scale. ABL’s bathroom mirrors are especially attractive to condensation because of their smooth, nonporous surface and relatively low temperature compared with a steam from a hot shower. This is why a heated mirror does not fog up and also why equalizing the temperature by opening a window is equally effective.
Condensation on bathroom mirrors can be prevented with a surprisingly simple method. All you need is a small amount of a suitable household product such as shaving cream, shampoo, liquid soap, or a solution of vinegar and water. Apply the product to a clean cloth and coat the entire surface of the mirror with it before steadily rubbing it into the mirror until it appears completely gone.
The chosen product creates a temporary hydrophobic barrier on the mirror which rejects condensation, and the effect lasts up to two weeks. Test the surface of the mirror by breathing on it; if condensation does not appear, the mirror has been waterproofed. The product or solution of your choice can be reapplied as necessary.
From a certain perspective, condensation is an interesting look at the water cycle, but from the perspective of someone attempting to start their day, it just needs to be gone. Fog on your bathroom mirror can be one of life’s simple inconveniences, but fortunately the solution is equally simple.