With all the designer sunglasses on the market and the demand for them by people from all walks of life, their purpose beyond icing on the cake for your wardrobe often gets lost. No doubt, designer sunglasses look good, but do they protect your eyes as well or better than the economy pair sold in most drugstores? Whether you are buying a pair of one of the most popular brands Chanel Sunglasses selling for hundreds of dollars or a $10 knock-off pair, there are certain things to look for to make sure you will be protecting your eyes from harmful UV rays.
Long-term unprotected exposure to the sun can result in cataracts which is a clouding of the lens of the eye. Just as it is recommended that we wear sunscreen year-round, it is also important to protect your eyes by wearing sunglasses whether you are snow-skiing or spending the day at the beach. In both instances, ultra-violet rays are intensified by the reflection of the snow on the slopes and the sand at the beach. A day in the sun without proper eye protection can result in sunburned corneas known as photokeratitis. While this condition is reversible, it is painful and can cause temporary loss of vision. The hours of greatest risk for damage to your eyes from the sun are between 10:00 a.m. and 4 p.m.
To protect your eyes, sunglasses should offer protection from both UVA and UVB rays. Don’t assume that the designer sunglasses that you won’t provide this protection simply because they cost more or have a darker lens. The only way to know for sure is to read the labels. Always look for sunglasses that provide 99 to 100 percent UV protection.
While darker sunglasses can help prevent glare, the tint is a choice of personal preference rather than protection. The tint should not distort colors or be so dark that vision is impaired. To get the most benefit from your sunglasses, you may want to select a wrap-around style to help to block more of the UV rays from entering from the side. A hat with a large brim will add further protection for your eyes.
Since it is recommended that everyone wear sunglasses to protect their eyes, it is a good idea to teach your children to wear them as early as possible. Look for the same UV ray protection in children’s sunglasses as for adults, and shatterproof lens.