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Buying the right pair of sunglasses

Buying the Right Pair of Sunglasses

Style is not the only thing to consider when purchasing that new pair of sunglasses. Making sure that they provide the right protection and are practical for their intended use is also important. Here are a few tips to consider.


Make sure that the sunglasses are comfortable. The handles should not pinch your sides. The weight should be evenly distributed between your ears and your nose and your eyelashes should not come in contact with the lenses.

Do they provide protection?

Too much UV light can damage your eyes. Find sunglasses with labels that indicate 99% UVB ray protection and at least 95% UVA ray protection.

Lens Color

Each lens color has a different effect on shape contrast and color distortion. Chose one that’s appropriate for the occasion you plan to wear them on. Here’s a brief breakdown of the different lens colors.

—          Gray: standard color. Decreases light intensity. No contrast effect or color distortion.

—          Brown: blocks some blue light. Good for snow sport and hunting in snow and during bright days.

—          Amber/Yellow: blocks almost all blue light for greatly increased contrast. Popular with hunters, who have to distinguish target shapes against bright skies and light backgrounds. However, this color lessens color recognition. Bad for driving.

—          Red/Orange: provide a lot of contrast. Good for overcast weather.

—          Violet: provides good contrast for distinguishing shapes against green backgrounds. Good for hiking/camping/hunting in green, forested areas.

—          Blue or Green: high contrast on yellow objects. Good for tennis.

Picking a style

This is a matter of personal taste. There are a ton of styles out there. Here are examples of some of the more popular ones.

—          Mirror shades: Popular with law enforcement. Polished, reflective lenses.

—          Aviators: Teardrop shaped lenses, highly polished. Popular with pilots and military personnel.

—          Wayfarers: Retro, 50s/60s glasses, with usually bright, thick frames.

—          Teashades: Made famous by John Lennon. Small round lenses don’t provide much protection.

—          Wraparounds: form fitting, sports sunglasses. Tough and sleek.

—          Oversized: very popular style today. Give that glitzy, Hollywood glamour look.

Picking the lens material

The most expensive, but also most high-quality, lenses are made of NXT polyurethane. It’s a high impact-resistant material that provides fine clarity and lightness. Glass lenses are heavy, but provide excellent clarity, though they too are expensive. A more common and affordable option is polycarbonate. It’s not as impact-resistant or as clear. The cheapest lens material is Acrylic.

The next time you choose prescription sunglasses in San Diego for yourself, check out Sunglass Optical.

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