If you're like us, you probably have a few pairs of 3D glasses stashed away at home, but for the most part you just throw them back in the box like everyone else. Recycling is good, right? They'll clean them off, repackage them and hand them to the next crowd of movie-goers about to find out how overrated Avatar is. Unfortunately, it seems as though there isn't nearly enough cleaning going on.
The fine folks at Good Housekeeping heard that most cinemas clean the glasses after each movie but decided to investigate anyway. They tested glasses at seven theaters in the New York, New Jersey and Connecticut area and found that not one of them was sterile. Now, we use a lot of things that aren't clean, nevermind sterile: pens at the post office, seats on public transport, ticket machines in car parks. However, if you thought those glasses being cleaned and repacked into plastic meant they were germ-free, you're so, so wrong.
The magazine tested both wrapped and unwrapped glasses and found a number of germs, including those causing conjunctivitis, skin infections, food poisoning, sepsis and pneumonia. They even found Staphylococcus aureus, the most common cause of staph infections.
"We expected to find general bacteria -- nothing is sterile, but staph is not something to take lightly," Carolyn Forte, director of home appliances and cleaning products at the Good Housekeeping Research Institute told ABC News. "We're not saying that these glasses will make you sick, but kids touch the glasses, touch their eyes and mouths -- the potential is there," she added.