Whether consciously or subconsciously, every addition that is made to a person’s wardrobe has a purpose. The item is either fashionable or functional, and sunglasses are no exception.
Both the lens and the frames can perform essential functions for the wearer’s lifestyle, or they could simply be used to complete the wearer’s desired look. Before you dish out the cash for your next pair of sunglasses, be sure to account for all of the different variables they might have to perform through.
Choose the Right Type of Sunglasses
Sunglasses can be further broken down from the fashion or function designations into sport, glacier, and casual.
Sports sunglasses, as the name implies, are designed for active wearers. These are for the athletic people who enjoy an active lifestyle, like joining summer volleyball leagues. They are typically designed with resiliency and adaptability in mind.
The frames tend to have a high degree of flexibility, and the lenses are resistant to scratches and shattering. The lenses themselves sometimes allow for easy changing so that the wearer can adjust to changes in invisibility.
The fit of sports sunglasses is also different from other types because of the high degree of activity and long periods of wear they are expected to perform under. The arms of the sunglasses often fit snuggly and have rubber on the ends to prevent movement. The bridge of the glasses usually has rubber nose pads as well to avoid slipping.
Glacier glasses are similar to sport glasses in function but to a much more extreme degree. These are designed for mountaineers, whose eyes are exposed to intense light reflected from snow. Along with a more powerful tint in the lenses, they also prevent light from sneaking through the sides by adding wraparound guards.
Casual glasses are the least purposeful of the three types but the most commonly used. The sole purpose of these glasses is to protect your eyes for daily wear. These lenses are perfect for driving or walking around town. Because they do not have as rigorous demands for use as the other types, these sunglasses can compromise functionality to make way for style.
Some brands offer all types of sunglasses—Oakley perhaps being the most popular with options for all types of athletes. Click here to shop for Oakley sunglasses and other popular brands.
Choose the Right Lens Materials
The next choice in choosing your ideal sunglasses is the material the lenses are made out of. The materials range from highly functional and very expensive to limited and inexpensive.
Acrylic lenses are very inexpensive, lending themselves well to occasional use. They do sacrifice clarity and durability for the price. Polycarbonate is a level above. They are not very scratch-resistant, but they allow for clear sight and are reasonably durable.
Glass lenses are known for their scratch-resistance and quality vision, but they are also the heaviest material, so they don’t lend themselves well to comfortable usage. Polyurethane is perhaps the most expensive material, but it is also the most functional. It one-ups glass lenses with its lightweight while also being highly resistant to damage.
Consider Sunglass Lens Features
Aside from the lens material of the sunglasses, the lenses can also add specific features.
Polarized lenses can be found in sunglasses of all levels of quality. They do a great job of reducing glare from surfaces, so they are very versatile in application. Care should be taken if used when driving. This coating can react to tinted windows in cars, creating blind spots.
Photochromic lenses are commonly called transition lenses. These are glasses that compensate for the presence of UV radiation by either lightening or darkening to meet the wearer’s needs. They conveniently eliminate the need to carry multiple pairs of glasses.
Consider Lens Tints
While many people pick their lens tint for purely cosmetic purposes, the different options provide different services. For example, Gray tints are a great multi-purpose lens because they are functional in both sunny and overcast conditions.
Brown tints enable improved depth perception by enhancing the contrast in objects. Yellow tinted lenses are great for marksmen and pilots because they allow for greater clarity in low-light conditions.
Save Your Money and Your Eyes
Much more goes into finding the perfect pair of sunglasses than just picking the frame that looks best on your face. Considering how expensive they can be, it pays to take your time in finding the right pair rather than checking out with the first suggestion. Be sure to thoroughly research which type is best for your needs so you won’t struggle to perform when it matters most.