Shades for Every Man, Woman, and Child
With new technology springing up everywhere these days, sunglasses are no exception. When it comes to protecting one of your most important assets, people are surprisingly unaware of these new advances. When you’re ready to purchase your new shades, make sure you ask about the following aspects.
Put Your Sunglasses Needs First
Yes, everyone’s looking for the pair they want, but first, you’ve got to narrow down what you need. For instance, if you’ve had laser eye surgery, cataracts or other eye issues, you need the top level of protection. You may be tempted to look at the latest and greatest in ever-so-slightly tinted lenses, but that’s like putting water on as a sunscreen – it will do you no good. You need a few things:
- Dark lenses: Brown, green, or black will do, but make sure you can’t see your eyes through them in normal light conditions. Especially for patients who have had eye surgery, this is very important since your eyes are hyper-sensitive for the first few weeks.
- Polarized lenses: these are a good idea for anyone, really, but especially people with sensitive eyes, or eye issues. Polarization is an additional “coating” that they put on the lenses that cut glare- everything from snow, to mirrors, to the sides of buildings and cars when driving. They cost more, but the benefits are priceless to your eyes. There are brands like Maui Jim, Revo, and others that come exclusively in polarized lenses, otherwise, look for a sticker or ask the sales associate.
- 100% UV Protection: This is important for everyone, not just those with sensitive eyes. Even kids should make sure they’re out with 100% protection. Many drug store and box store glasses come cheap and claim 99% protection – don’t be fooled! That single percent that’s getting through is full of harmful UVB rays that not only age your eyes but damage them as well. These are the dangerous rays we’re trying to keep out, so make certain you’re 100% covered!
Sunglasses that Fit
It seems obvious to many of us that if our faces are different, our glasses would be different; yet, surprisingly, many others don’t consider this first step before taking the plunge into a new pair. There are a few general rules, but if you really want an expert opinion, ask the sales associate at any reputable dealer.
Sunglass Huts, for example, put every employee through extensive training on this subject alone. Don’t be afraid to ask, that’s what they’re there for! And don’t be afraid to follow the advice, either. If she says you look killer in classic Wayfarers, don’t shy away from rockin’ ’em!
There will, no doubt, be a number of styles that fit your face, so narrowing that down is an easy way to get a handle on moving forward into the more important aspects of your purchase.
Styles of Sunglasses
There are numerous sunglasses styles, but the major groups are these:
- Sporty: These generally boast polycarbonate lenses (shatterproof, for the wear and tear), lightweight frames – whether it is titanium or plastic – and wrap-around shapes (to cover the sides of the eyes from excess light).
- High Fashion: If you’re looking for high fashion and designer sunglasses, chances are you already have a few names picked out – Gucci, D&G, Chanel – just make sure you follow the rules of picking what you need first before getting carried away with the glamor of the latest runway style. Your eyes deserve it, after all, you want to be able to see that runway for many years to come.
- Classic: These are your Aviators, Wayfarers, John Lennon’s, and Elton Johns. They usually boast glass lenses for optimal clarity. Ray-Ban is possibly the most recognizable name in classic shades, but Revo, Serengeti, and other brands are just as well established and trustworthy in the market (in fact, most sunglass companies, besides the high fashion brands, are actually owned by Luxoticca Corporation, who also owns Sunglass Hut and LensCrafters).
Before you buy, consider your important factors and remember that your eyes will be grateful as they lie on that endless sandy beach in retirement.