A good quality pair of sunglasses is more than just a fashion accessory.
While a cheaper pair of sunnies can look just as good as an expensive pair, it’s rather their quality we should be concerned with.
Lenses that are simply dark, but not polarised (protecting against UVA and UVB light) do more harm than good – by shading our eyes and causing the pupils to dilate, they in fact allow in more harmful UV rays.
Spending a little more on a quality polarised pair that blocks out 99 to 100% of UV rays is an investment in your health. Here the experts from Maui Jim tell us why good sunglasses are more than a fashion accessory.
1. Skin cancer prevention
Where’s the one place we don’t apply sunscreen? Around our eyes! This leaves the thin, delicate skin around them, as well as the eyes themselves, unprotected. In fact, 5 to 10% of all skin cancer occurs around the eyes.
Look for the Skin Cancer Foundation seal the next time you shop for sunglasses, and select a high-quality brand of polarised shades. Wrap around styles are even better, as they offer even more coverage and protection.
2. Keeping your eyes younger for longer
Sunlight contains blue light, also known as high energy visible (HEV) light. We need a certain amount of exposure to help regulate our sleep and wake cycles. It also helps boost alertness, heightens reaction times and elevates mood. But cumulative exposure has been associated with age-related macular degeneration, so wearing polarised outdoor lenses that absorb HEV is important to maintain long-term eye health.
3. Helping you see and drive better in the dark
Normally our eyes fully adapt to darkness within 30 minutes. But being in bright sunlight without adequate protection for two hours or more significantly lengthens the time it take our eyes to adjust to indoor and night-time light levels.
By protecting our eyes with polarised lenses, we keep this adaptation period short, which improves our vision and makes it safer for us to drive at night.
4. Reducing the risk of accidents
The sun’s glare interferes with our ability to see and react to other vehicles and hazards on the road – especially after a storm when water is involved, as it reflects up to 100% of UV light. So choosing a pair of polarised sunglasses that completely block out both UVA and UVB rays will solve this problem.