The water affinity of Si-based surfaces is quantified by contact angle measurement and surface free energy to explain hydrophobic or hydrophilic behavior of silicone, silicates, and silicon surfaces. Surface defects such as dangling bonds, surface free energy including Lewis acid-base and Lifshitz-van der Waals components are discussed. Water nucleation and condensation is further explained by surface topography. Tapping mode atomic force microscopy (TMAFM) provides statistical analysis of the topography of these Si-based surfaces. The correlation of the above two characteristics describes the behavior of water condensation at Si-based surfaces. Surface root mean square roughness increasing from several Å to several nm is found to provide nucleation sites that expedite water condensation visibly for silica and silicone. Hydrophilic surfaces have a condensation pattern that forms puddles of water while hydrophobic surfaces form water beads. Polymer adsorption on these surfaces alters the water affinity as well as the surface topography, and therefore controls condensation on Si-based surfaces including silicone intraocular lens (IOL). The polymer film is characterized by Rutherford backscattering spectrometry (RBS) in conjunction with 4.265 MeV 12C(α, α)12C, 3.045 MeV 16O(α, α)16O nuclear resonance scattering (NRS), and 2.8 MeV elastic recoil detection (ERD) of hydrogen for high resolution composition and areal density measurements. The areal density of hydroxypropyl methylcellulose (HPMC) film ranges from 10 18 atom/cm2 to 1019 atom/cm2 gives the silica or silicone surface a roughness of several Å and a wavelength of 0.16 ± 0.02 μm, and prevents fogging by forming a complete wetting layer during water condensation.