How do I clean my Samsung Gear VR?

Whether you're the sole user of your Samsung Gear VR or you share the fun with family and friends, that headset is going to need cleaning. Sweat, gunk from your pores, and makeup can live on the inside of your headset and allow bacteria to settle in. Gross. Before all that icky stuff sets in, learn to make a habit of keeping your Samsung Gear VR squeaky clean and avoid having the "What is that?!" moment later.

What's it made of?

Your Samsung Gear VR has a removable facial interface that's made of porous foam cushioning, which is meant to keep the headset comfortably in place over your forehead, around your eyes, and over the bridge of your nose. The head strap is velcro and nylon and wraps around each side of your head and around the back.

Cleaning the padding

The interior padding is taking in the worst of your sweat and makeup. If you haven't been in the habit of cleaning it on a regular basis, now would be a prime time to start. Think of what could already making itself at home on it!

You'll need to be mindful of the products you use to clean the foam. The best thing to use is a non-abrasive, alcohol-free antibacterial wipe. All three of these aspects are important: non-abrasive wipes will not scrub away at the soft surface of the foam; alcohol-free wipes won't dry out or harden the cushioning, and the antibacterial agents will stop bacterial growth in its tracks. Gently wipe or sponge the surface with the cloth after you've used the headset.

It's important to let the foam cushioning dry completely before using the headset again, especially if you've removed it to clean it. The best thing you can do is just let it air dry, but you can speed up the drying process by using a dry paper towel to soak up any extra moisture that may remain.

Cleaning the head strap

Your scalp can get just as greasy as your face, and over time the head strap of your Samsung Gear VR can build up a residue.

Use the same non-abrasive, alcohol-free antibacterial wipes you used for the foam cushioning interface. Nylon doesn't respond well to alcohol; it degrades the material's flexibility, and an abrasive wipe will strip away the color over time. You should also allow the strap to dry completely before using it again.

Cleaning the lenses

Fingerprints are going to happen, between putting on the headset, adjusting it, and snapping your phone into place, and oils and grease from your hands will somehow make their way onto the lenses as well. Use a microfibre cloth and (if you wish) a lens cleaning spray on the interior and exterior of the lenses to get rid of all that crud. More specifically, rub the cloth in a circular motion, starting from the center of the lens and moving out to the edges. This will all but eliminate any smudge lines and catch any bits of dust or other particles that might latch on and obstruct your crystal clear view.

Extra helpful tips

You can be proactive about keeping your Samsung Gear VR on the extra clean side. In addition to our cleaning advice, try to add in some extra habits, such as:

  • If you're playing really active games for a prolonged period of time, wear a sport headband to help keep sweat from dripping past your hairline and into the headset.

  • Wipe your face with a cosmetic, skin safe antibacterial wipe and let it dry before putting the headset on.

  • Make a habit of removing makeup, especially foundation, before putting on the headset.

  • A number of companies have begun to manufacture VR headset covers; they're generally made of cotton and are designed to fit right over the foam cushioning. They add a little extra comfort and are removable and machine washable.

  • Get the most out of your VR experience with the right accessories to match your Samsung Gear VR.

Keep it clean, folks

Have some advice for keeping your Samsung Gear VR clean as clean can be? We'd love to hear it in the comments below.