Frosted glass is a type of textured glass with an etched finish that is used to maintain privacy while still allowing in natural light. It is seen most often in bathroom windows and shower doors where the frost can be applied across the entire surface, or patterned leaving some areas transparent. Like other varieties, it can come in a range of shapes and sizes whether rectangular, square, round or oval. Given the application of frosted glass in specific areas like bathrooms, it is important to consider combining it with other features like safety, laminated or toughened glass.
Real frosted glass can be produced in several different ways. These differ from glass window film and spray-on options which are temporary and less durable. There are two main manufacturing methods used today.
Acid-etched frosted glass is created by using an abrasive substance, i.e. acid, to alter the surface and create its signature soft, and opaque look. This is applied to just one side of the pane.
The second method is sandblasting. In this method of frosting, the pane is bombarded with tiny particles of sand, or walnut husks by a high speed machine. As the particles impact the surface, they make small indentations and distortions whose result is a white, frosted look. This can be adjusted depending on whether complete opacity or just translucence is desired.
Many of the same areas that benefit from the added privacy of frosted glass are also the same ones where safety glass should be employed. Bathrooms and showers areas are musts as the chance of someone slipping is higher than elsewhere and broken glass would be particularly dangerous.
Single pane safety glass (toughened glass) and laminated safety are both able to be combined with frosted designs. Laminated safety glass guarantees the best protection, as it consists of multiple sheets with a foil material applied. Both toughened and laminated glass resist breaking far better than standard panes and when broken, shatter into small, blunt pieces instead of jagged edges. This makes it ideal for shower doors and separating walls.
Cleaning frosted glass is neither difficult nor complicated. However, given its surface, it requires somewhat different care than usual. Because the surfaces is rough instead of smooth, small particles of dust and dirt can more easily build up in these pitted areas and require cleaning by hand. Luckily, since only one side is frosted, the interior unfrosted side can be cleaned like any other window or door.
Dust and dirt can best be removed from the surface using a clean microfiber cloth with a spray bottle of distilled water. Avoid using harsh cleaning agents and not rub too strongly. Do not use abrasive sponges or clothes either which can scratch the glass. Clean in circular motions and squeegee it clean. When finished, you can dry it with a lint-free cloth if necessary.