Sunglasses – How do they Work to Protect you?

Most of us tend to view sunglasses as an awesome fashion accessory that gives us that glamourous, celebrity look, but there is so much more to them than meets the eye…

The primary function of sunglasses? To protect your eyes in more ways than you can imagine. They act to shield your eyes from the sun and its harmful UV rays, eliminate glare, thus reducing eye strain.

How Do Sunglasses Protect you from UV Rays?

Sunglasses have a special UV coating that absorb all harmful UV rays from the sun, preventing them from entering and damaging your eyes. There are two types of UV rays in particular that can affect eyesight: UVA and UVB.

Research suggests that overexposure to UVA rays can cause long term damage to your eyes later on in life. With the development of eye conditions such as cataracts, your vision will become clouded and blurry and in the case of macular degeneration, you will ultimately lose your central vision.

In the short term, UVB rays can cause photokeratitis; an acute and painful inflammation of the cornea that can even cause temporary blindness. In other words, your eyes can get sunburnt in the same way that your skin can!

So, when looking for that perfect pair of sunglasses, the team at Hodd Barnes and Dickens advise looking for a pair that has 100% protection from both UVA and UVB rays.

Sunglasses Vs. Glare

Have you ever been looking out towards the horizon, only to find that the light reflections from the water are making you squint? Skiing on the slopes on a sunny day, only to find that you’re being blinded by the brightness of the snow? Or even taking a drive and having trouble seeing if a car is coming around the corner because your eyes are dazzled by the sunlight?

This is the result of the sun’s rays reflecting horizontally off surfaces such as snow, large bodies of water and even the bonnet of your car, straight into your eyes. It goes by the name of glare and can be dangerous, causing temporary blindness at times, as well as eye strain.

Fear not! Sunglasses come to the rescue again by providing you with the option of polarised lenses to eliminate that pesky glare. Looking through these lenses will reduce eyestrain, as well as bringing more clarity, comfort and sharpness to your vision. Polarised lens technology doesn’t stop there though; the colours you see around you will also appear richer, letting you truly appreciate the beauty of your surroundings.

Shopping for Shades

You’ve read all about the lens technology behind sunglass protection, but have you ever thought that those high street aviator shades that you’ve been styling may not be giving your eyes adequate protection?

The style of sunglasses that you choose impacts heavily on the level of protection your eyes will receive. Oversized, wraparound style sunglasses that sit close to your face will work to shield your eyes from UV rays. The bigger the gaps at the top and bottom of your sunglasses, the more angles there are for UV rays to enter your eyes.

So, whether you are planning on going away for that late ski trip in Easter, or jetting off to sunnier climes this summer, don’t ruin the good views and good memories by squinting in the bright light without the right shades!

The HBD team highly recommend taking a good quality, well fitted pair of sunglasses outdoors, or away with you on your travels as an essential. Think of it as something that you would pack as second nature, much like sun tan lotion. If you have any questions or would like further advice about finding the right sunglasses for you, please do not hesitate to contact us today on 020 7831 0032  or email us at