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Sunglasses 101: Wear Sunglasses, Even When It’s Cloudy

The sunís harmful rays are way more sneaky than you may think. Able to cut through fog, haze, and clouds, UV rays make overcast days deceiving, and you should always wear sunglasses, even when itís cloudy.

Don’t worry, sunglass manufacturers know this, and they make lenses specifically for low-light conditions so that you can see clearly and protect your eyes, even in overcast conditions.

Here are a few things you should know about wearing sunglasses, even when itís cloudy.

1 | UV Rays Are Like Ninjas

80% of the sunís rays can get through clouds. This depends on the types of clouds and cover. According to the American Cancer Society, some types of clouds can actually increase UV intensity. Cloud science is interesting, but you probably donít have the time or equipment to identify and assess the clouds each time you step outside. UV rays are sneaky devils that can get through clouds, making them easy to foolishly dismiss on overcast days. Donít let the sun’s ninja rays fool you. Wear sunglasses, even when itís cloudy.

2 | Wear Sunglasses, Even in the Shade

Surfaces reflect UV rays, especially water, snow, sand, and pavement. Even if youíre under an umbrella or wearing a hat, you should wear sunglasses. Those shifty rays can bounce off of a surface right into your eyes. Protect your eyes; wear sunglasses, even in the shade. †

CLICK HERE to learn more about why you should always wear sunglasses in the winter.

3 | Change Lens Color as Light Changes

Brands like Tifosi and Native Eyewear deliver sunglasses with multiple lenses that you can easily change as light conditions change.

Native Eyewear Nova Sunglasses - Iron Black Frame - Sportflex Lens
Native Eyewear makes a Sportflex colored lens designed specifically for low-light conditions | Native Eyewear Nova Sunglasses

CLICK HERE to learn more about which lens colors to wear in which light conditions.

4 | Consider Time of Day and Elevation

According to the American Cancer Society, UV rays are the most intense between 10am and 4pm, and more rays reach the ground at higher elevations.

5 | Donít Forget About Your Eyelids

Your eyeballs are not the only things at risk when youíre outside; UV rays can also burn your eyelids. Yikes. According to the Skin Cancer Foundation, eyelid cancers may account for 10% of all skin cancers.†

6 | All Sunglasses Are NOT Created Equal

Always read the label before purchasing a pair of shades. If they do not say that they provide at least 98% UV protection, – 100% is obviously the best – then donít buy them. †Stay away from labels that say things like ďUV absorbingĒ or ďblocks most UV lightĒ. Look for a specific rating. Speaking of ratings, sunglasses that provide 400nm protection also provide 100% UV protection.

Costa Del Mar Rockport Sunglasses - Tortoise POLARIZED Sunrise Yellow 580P
Always check the label or sticker to make sure the lenses provide 100% UV protection. |†Costa Del Mar Rockport Sunglasses

7 | Size Matters

It’s true. Always consider size and fit. Some sunglasses may look awesome, but if the lenses do not completely cover your eyes, including the sides, or there is too much space between the frame and your face, then the sunglasses will not be awesome defenders against UV rays. Sport and wrap sunglasses typically provide the most protection.

8 | Polarized Does Not Mean UV Protection

Polarized†lenses have a filter that reduces glare from sunlight thatís reflected off of a flat surface.†Polarization alone does not provide UV protection. †Most quality polarized sunglasses like Native Eyewear, Costa Del Mar, and Kaenon also provide 100% UV protection, but you should always double-check a pair of sunglasses’ UV protection rating, and you should always wear sunglasses, even when it’s cloudy.

CLICK HERE to learn more about polarized sunglasses and how they work. †

 

© Native Slope and NativeSlope.com, 2017. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this siteís author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Native Slope and NativeSlope.com with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

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Sunglasses 101: Can You Wear Sunglasses to View the Eclipse?

Repeat after me: My eyes are awesome, and†I WILL NOT wear anything but ISO 12312-2 safety standard compliant eyewear to look at the eclipse. Ever.†

So, the answer is a big fat HECK NO, sunglasses†WILL NOT protect your eyes from the sunís harmful rays while you look directly at the eclipse.

If thatís all you need to know, then trust us, and ditch the sunglasses, snag yourself some approved eclipse eyewear, and enjoy an incredibly unique experience without risking your eyesight. †

If youíd like to know why wearing sunglasses to directly view the eclipse is a terrible idea, then read on.

:: Why Sunglasses WILL NOT Protect Your Eyes During the Eclipse ::

  • Sunglasses are designed to protect your eyes from reflected, indirect sunlight. Sure, you may occasionally look directly at the sun, but itís rarely on purpose, and itís almost always only for a second or two. According to NASA, retina damage will occur within a minute of direct sunlight exposure, maybe even less. Donít look directly at the sun, even with sunglasses on.
  • Here’s some perspective: Eclipse glasses block 99.9999% of the sunís light. Your sunglasses do not do that. If they did, then they would totally suck. Imagine cycling and only being able to see 0.0001% of the sunlight. Yikes.
  • Depending on the lens color and technology, most sunglasses filter about 60% of the sunís light. 60% is not 99.9999%. (CLICK HERE to learn more about lens colors and how they work.)
  • Joel Schuman, chair of ophthalmology at NYU Langone Health, told VOX, ďThe light from the sun is very intense and concentrated into a very small area, and then that light is converted into heat, and that heat cooks the retina.Ē Even if you’re wearing†sunglasses, the sun will literally burn a hole in your eyeballs if you look directly at it for too long. I’d like to keep my retinas raw, thank you.
  • Eclipse glasses look way more awesome than regular sunglasses, so youíll probably get a date while youíre wearing them. Bonus.
Image: Scott Winterton via WashingtonPost.com

 

:: Other Important Things to Know ::

  • Make sure your eclipse eyewear or viewer is legit. There are many scammers out there trying to make a buck while you potentially damage your eyesight. Jerks.
  • Do not use a solar viewer or filter if itís scratched or damaged in any way.
  • According to NASA, most filters only last about three years. Let’s believe NASA because the people who work there are smart.
  • DO NOT remove your approved solar filter unless you are in the path of totality, and the sun is totally covered by the moon.†CLICK HERE to see if youíre one of the lucky ones who will get to experience a truly total eclipse.
Image: Eclipse 2017 via†http://eclipse2017.nasa.gov/safety

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Other Helpful Eclipse Resources:

NASAís Eclipse Safety Site

How to Make a Pinhole Camera to Safely View the Eclipse

Reputable Vendors of Solar Filters & Viewers

Title Image:†Ben Kaye-Skinner via freeimages.com
© Native Slope and NativeSlope.com, 2017. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this siteís author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Native Slope and NativeSlope.com with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

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Sunglasses 101: Lens Color Guide

Choosing the right lens color can be overwhelming, especially when youíre shopping performance sunglasses. Below is a basic guide to help you understand how different lens colors work in different light conditions. †

:: The Basics ::

Darker lens colors like gray, green, and brown work best in medium and bright light conditions.
Lighter lens colors like yellow and rose work best in lower light conditions.
Got it? †Good. †

:: Letís Get More Specific ::

 

Gray Lenses

Gray lenses are an excellent choice for everyday, general wear. They are the darkest lenses that provide the most light reduction in bright conditions. They can also function fairly well in lower-light and hazy or foggy conditions. They are ideal when on water, as polarized versions work particularly well to reduce reflection and glare.

Green Lenses

Ray-Ban Aviator Sunglasses -SMALL 52mm Matte Black - Green Lens - RB3044

Green lenses are also quite versatile and excellent for everyday wear. Green lenses are good in bright conditions, and they work particularly well in moderate-light or partly cloudy conditions, as they enhance contrast and color.

Copper Lenses

Costa Del Mar Straits Sunglasses - Blackout Black - POLARIZED Copper 580P

Copper lenses significantly increase contrast in medium and bright light conditions. †Sunglasses with copper lenses are a popular choice for anglers, boaters, and paddlers because they enhance contrast without distorting color.

Brown or Amber Lenses

Kaenon Pintail Sunglasses - Matte Tobacco - B12 Brown POLARIZED 029-02-B12

Lenses in the brown color family provide the best contrast in the widest variety of light conditions, and this is an excellent lens color for everyday wear and versatility. †Brown lenses will distort color more than gray or green lenses, but they offer better contrast in overcast or flat light conditions.

Yellow Lenses

Costa Del Mar Rockport Sunglasses - Tortoise POLARIZED Sunrise Yellow 580P

Yellow lenses are excellent in low-light, hazy, or foggy conditions. They are popular amongst pilots, drivers, and marksmen. Runners and cyclists also prefer yellow lenses in early morning or evening light conditions. Sunglasses with yellow lenses are also an ideal choice for those who desire eye protection from computer screens and other devices that emit harmful blue light. †They are not a good choice for bright light conditions, and they will distort colors.

Native Eyewear Nova Sunglasses - Iron Black Frame - Sportflex Lens

Native Eyewear offers a “sportflex” lens color that’s a great alternative to a yellow lens. The sportflex lens is made to reduce color distortion while enhancing contrast in low-light conditions.

Blue or Purple Lenses

Aside from being fashion-forward, blue and purple lenses are ideal for winter sports or other flat-light conditions that require depth perception and enhanced contrast. They work particularly well in foggy, hazy, and snowy conditions. If you have sunglasses that enable you to switch out lenses as conditions change, then a pair of gray lenses for bright conditions and a pair of blue or purple lenses for low-light conditions are ideal, especially on water and snow.

Pink, Red, or Rose Lenses

Pink, red, or rose lenses also offer excellent visibility in low-light and snowy conditions. Providing the greatest amount of contrast, they are ideal when driving or being active in the snow in low-light or flat-light conditions. They are an excellent choice as back-up lenses to replace green or gray lenses as light conditions change. ††

© Native Slope and NativeSlope.com, 2017. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this siteís author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Native Slope and NativeSlope.com with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

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