How to choose sunglasses that protect your eyes


What do you think when buying a pair of sunglasses? The style? How do you look in them?

The most important feature of your blinds is whether they provide full protection from the sun’s ultraviolet rays.

Radiant energy generated by the sun contributes to cataracts, macular degeneration and eyelid skin cancer.

Even on overcast days, your sunglasses should be perched on your nose to protect your vision.

Make sure the label or sticker says “100%” UV protection, “400 UV” or has the American Optometric Association seal of approval.

This is a non-negotiable aspect of your sunglasses.

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Size matters. Oversized lenses or wraparound styles limit the light entering your eyes.

The color doesn’t matter. Lens color has no bearing on safety. Darker lenses don’t block more sun, but they can provide more visual contrast. This can be useful if you practice outdoor sports.

Polarized lenses filter out glare from water, snow and road. Mirrors reduce glare and completely obscure your eyes, while gradient lenses adapt to the lighting.

Performance sunglasses are made of durable polycarbonate plastic and high quality lenses. These are usually used for sports.

For those who wear corrective lenses, custom sunglasses are made specifically to your prescription.

What does the price have to do with it? Nothing. An expensive pair is no better than a cheap pair. Just make sure they provide UV protection.

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Check the quality by holding a pair at arm’s length and looking at a distant gate through the lenses.

Move the glasses vertically and horizontally. If the door frame looks wavy or warped, skip it.

If you’ve had your sunglasses for a few years, ask an optician to check their ability to filter UV rays.

Oh, and be sure to choose a pair that looks good on you too!

Debbie DeAngelo, RN, is certified in women’s health and is a holistic health coach. She can be reached at [email protected]


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