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What Type of Glass Should I Use When Framing?

When it comes to picture framing, glass choice can make a HUGE difference in the preservation of your art work or photo to be framed. With the wrong type of glass your art will be exposed to harmful UV rays and/or static, which can cause irreparable damage to your work. Do yourself a favor and read through this post to insure you are making the right decision when choosing the glazing, or glass, for your masterpiece!

I will go over six different types of glass and the benefits you get from each. Starting from the least protective, I will go over regular clear glass, conservation clear/UV protective glass, non-glare/anti-reflective glass, conservation reflection control glass, plexiglass and, the best of all, museum glass.

How Do You Know if Your Art Has UV Damage?

UV damage is clear to see. You will start to notice that your artwork or photo is beginning to fade and usually turns a brown color. Once your image is damaged it is very hard, if not impossible, to restore your work.



Regular Clear

Regular clear glass is the most basic glass of them all. This offers no protection to your artwork, other than protecting from dust and spills. This is the cheapest option when purchasing a custom frame and is least likely to be recommended by a specialist.

  • Protects From Dust, Accidental Spills and Other External Factors

  • Can Be Distinguished by its Green Tint

  • Offers No UV Protection

Conservation Clear/UV Protection Glass

Conservation glass is usually the minimum standard in most custom framing shops. It offers the same benefits as regular clear glass, but it has a UV protective film, which blocks out 99% of UV rays. The reason it is most popular is because it is the most cost effective with a bit of protection.

  • Keeps Pictures From Fading with a Protective Layer that Offers 99% UV Protection

  • Still Has a Glare, Such as Regular Clear Glass

  • Most Cost Effective with Protection From the Sun

Non-Glare, Anti-Reflective Glass

Reflection control glass, also know as non-glare or anti-reflective glass, is the regular glass with an etched surface to give the glass a matte look. This helps prevent reflections but doesn't protect from harmful UV rays.

  • Etched Surface to Reduce Reflections

  • Does Not Protect From UV Damage

Conservation Reflection Control

Runner up to the best glass choice, conservation reflection control glass offers both UV protection and is also non-glare. This type of glass is affordable if you are not looking to go with museum quality glass.

  • Has a 99% UV Protective Film

  • Non-Glare to Prevent Reflections

  • High Quality Glass

Museum Glass

Museum glass is the crème de la crème when it comes to glass selection. It offers the most protection of them all and can sometimes have you second guessing if there is even glass there! It is called Museum Glass, because it is museum grade glass that insures you can see the artwork or photo at its best no matter what angle you look at it from. Though it is the most expensive, it is well worth it 100 times over.

  • AKA "Master piece" glass. Best of the best.

  • Least Reflective of Other Glass Types

  • 99% UV Protection

  • Offers Highest Level of Protection

If your work has fine details, darker in color or has some sort of gloss, this type of glass is highly recommended to preserve the work of art.

*Pro Tip - You can use a black light to test and see which glass you have currently.


HTX Frames is a Houston local Custom Framing Shop in the Montrose area. We are here to assist you with any of your framing needs! Contact us by phone/text, 281-984-1000, or fill out our online order form to receive a quote today!

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