When yo’re buying a pair of sunglasses, what do you consider most? For many, the answer would be frames. However, the reality is that lenses are far more important to the health of your eyes. Annually, sunglasses constitute a $34 billion market at retail, and much of that comes from sunglasses that do little more for your eyes than a doll umbrella does for an elephant. Many a brand has attempted to capitalize more on lenses. Oakley, for example, developed Thump in 2004, which had built-in digital audio players. However, the real focus needs to be on what your lenses are doing to protect your eyes and help your vision.
There are a vast number of different types of lenses available, each suited to certain conditions. Talk to an optician if you aren’t sure which ones are best for your needs.
- Blue-blockers block, you guessed it, blue light. They usually have amber lenses, and they’re popular with skiers, hunters, boaters, and pilots because they heighten contrast. They also combat the potentially harmful effects of blue light like macular degeneration.
- Polarized lenses have been heard of by many, though few are still asking, “What are polarized sunglass lenses and how do polarized sunglass lenses work?” Polarized sunglass lenses serve the dual purpose of reducing glare and filtering UV rays. Reflected light usually travels horizontally, but polarized replacement lenses block that intense reflected light, reducing glare. This is also how polarized lenses filter UV rays. If you don’t have polarized lenses, you can order replacement polarized lenses to use instead for better protection.
- Mirrored lenses limit the amount of light entering your eyes, making you more comfortable. They come in virtually every color, though the color of the coating does not influence color perception.
- Gradient lenses Can be tinted either from the top down, shielding eyes from overhead sunlight, or tinted from both the top and the bottom to reduce reflection from the sun and the water or sand.
- Photochromic lenses adjust their level of darkness depending on their exposure to UV light.
Learn more about your sunglass questions like “How do polarized sunglass lenses work?” “Which lenses are right for me?” and “Can I wear prescription sunglasses?” by talking to your optrician. It’s important to protect your eyes the right way. Find more: www.thesunglassfix.com