They can be cool, stylish, elegant and glamorous. We’re talking about your next pair of sunglasses. When shopping for a new pair of shades this summer, make sure you factor a few things into your decision, whether you’re using them for daily prescription-based usage or to simply block the sun’s rays.
Protecting your eyes is important, and while you might grab the first pair of stylish sunglasses you pick up, remember that there’s more than meets the eye:
1. UV Protection
Tiny wrinkles or crow’s feet around the corners of your eyes might be from too much sun exposure. The best sunglasses for summer offer UV protection and help block damaging ultraviolet light and radiation from the sun. Small doses of vitamin D are fine, but large doses can be damaging to eyes and skin.
We’re taught to never look directly at the sun because it can damage the eyes. Having sunglasses without UV protection can also be damaging. When shopping for sunglasses, look for the sticker on the glasses stating they block 100 percent UVA or UVB rays. Even on cloudy days these types of glasses can block the sun’s harmful rays. If you’re shopping online for cheap sunglasses, make sure they state that UV protection is included. Too much sun exposure also causes cataracts and can destroy the retina and lining that allows you to see clearly.
2. A Proper Fit
Sunglasses should rest on your nose comfortably and offer full protection over your eyes. If they don’t fit well, they can allow UV rays to get into your eyes and skin, causing damage. If your shades are too small or too tight, you’ll feel your eyelashes touching the sunglasses. If they are too big, they might droop on your nose.
For a good fit, your sunglasses should line up with the eyebrows. A pair of sunglasses with UV protection that wrap around the sides of your head can help, too. They can block out allergens and even sand at the beach, as well as the sun’s rays that are sometimes reflected while at the beach or in the pool.
3. Polarized Lenses
Polarized sunglasses can help with reducing glare. Glare can come not only from the beach water or pool water but also from snow in the winter. The glare can be so strong because it’s actually reflecting the sun’s light right into your line of sight.
What should you do if the glasses you have don’t state whether they have polarized lenses? A great way to tell is indoors. When you try the glasses on and look at your computer screen or smartphone, you should have difficulty seeing because of the darkness of the lenses.
4. Plastic, Polycarbonate or Shatterproof
If you want to invest more in your sunglasses, buy shatterproof or durable polycarbonate lenses. This can protect your glasses if you drop them, sit on them or step on them by accident.
If you’re looking to save money, just buy plastic sunglasses but get a few pairs that have UV protection. That way, if you lose them, you can just grab another pair.
5. Transition Lenses
A great way to buy sunglasses if you need a prescription is to get transition lenses that adjust based on the light coming in. Your pupil, which is the black dot in the center of your eyeball, will adjust depending on the brightness.
Transition lenses will darken as you go outdoors and lighten once you are inside. When they’re darker, your pupil actually opens up more to allow in additional light.
Protecting your peepers is important. While there are many options for sunglasses, you do need to ensure you’re wearing glasses with full UV protection. Stop by Advanced Eye Care and browse our selection of sunglasses.