Sunglasses aren’t just a fashion statement—they're a necessity
if you want to protect your eyes from the sun. Basic sunglasses that block
100 percent of UVA and UVB rays will do in most cases, but other options,
such as polarized lenses, may be worth considering.
Depending on your lifestyle, polarized lenses might be a better option
for you than basic sunglasses. Polarized sunglasses are designed to reduce
glare from reflective surfaces such as water. Sunglasses with polarized
lenses are popular with boaters, water skiers and snow skiers, as they
limit light coming into the eye in bright conditions.
Polarized lenses contain a filter that allows only vertical light to pass
through, blocking the horizontal light that bounces off surfaces and creates
an annoying—and potentially dangerous—glare.
High-quality sunglasses typically include polarized lenses, which are most
commonly black or brown but may come in other colors as well.
Benefits of polarized lenses
When compared to other sunglasses, polarized lenses offer additional benefits,
- Reduced reflections and glare.
- Increased visual comfort and reduced eyestrain.
- Improved visual clarity and contrast.
Disadvantages of polarized lenses
Although most people will benefit from polarized lenses, they aren’t
for everyone. People who spend a lot of time looking at an LCD screen
will have difficulty seeing the screen through polarized lenses. Additionally,
polarized lenses are not recommended for pilots or heavy equipment operators.
Who needs polarized lenses?
Polarized lenses have long been popular with boaters, fishermen and others
who spend a great deal of time on or near water. They are also a common
lens option among snow skiers, though some downhill skiers say polarized
lenses make it difficult to make out the difference between patches of
ice and snow on the slopes.
Athletes or anyone else who spends much time driving or being outside will
benefit from polarized lenses.
Where to buy polarized lenses
Most high-quality sunglass brands offer polarized lenses. It is important
to know that just because sunglasses are polarized does not mean they
protect against UV radiation. Be sure that the labels on even your polarized
glasses say that they block 100 percent of UVA and UVB rays.
Key-Whitman Optical Center offers a variety of stylish sunglasses options from top designers. If
you’re on the hunt for a good pair of sunglasses for summer, stop
by Monday through Friday, between 8am and 4:30pm.