Should I Get Transition Lenses or Prescription Sunglasses?


If you wear glasses in your day-to-day life, you may come across several recurring problems. Some of those problems may include your glasses feeling uncomfortable on your face or the constant worry about where you placed your glasses. Regardless of where you live, however, one of those problems is intense sunlight. Ultimately, you have the option of purchasing transition lenses or prescription sunglasses.

Whether you work outside for a living or are enjoying time with your family on a beautiful spring day, intense sunlight can be distracting and uncomfortable. It can make you want to stay indoors—even on beautiful days. While others are enjoying the benefits of a bright, beautiful day, you may feel the need to avoid spending too much time outdoors in order to protect your eyes.

But having said that, all hope is not lost. There are several steps you can take to eliminate this problem. In fact, there are two different purchases you can make to feel more comfortable on sunny days. Both of these solutions are terrific ways to eliminate some discomfort so that you can work or play on extremely sunny days.

However, this naturally leads to the question of which alternative you should select. This decision may be more difficult than you think. Each choice has advantages and disadvantages and you want to carefully consider them before making your final decision. For this task, you have come to the right place. Below you will find a detailed description of transition lenses, prescription sunglasses, and the differences between both. With this knowledge in hand, you will undoubtedly be able to make the best decision.

Transition Lenses and Prescription Sunglasses: The Basics

So let’s start with the basics. Transition lenses are special lenses that you can add to your current frames. They are fairly self-explanatory. These lenses darken in the sun and then lighten when you go inside. While these lenses have been around for decades, these transition lenses come in many materials and have a variety of lens colors. The lenses darken through different processes, but they ultimately undergo chemical changes that darken your lenses when they are exposed to ultraviolet light.

There are different types of transition lenses. For instance, if you look at our website, you can see that there are four alternatives. Transitions Signature are considered to be the most responsive adaptive lenses for both indoor and outdoor use. Transitions Vantage contain variable polarization, meaning crisper and sharper vision when you are outdoors. Transitions Xtractive adapt to fatigue and strain-causing light—both indoors and outdoors. This even includes when you are behind a car windshield. Finally, Transitions Drivewear are specifically designed to help reduce glare and increase clarity when you are driving. As you can see, there are a variety of lenses that you can choose from. You will need to evaluate your preferences and personal needs before making your choice.

By contrast, you can opt for prescription sunglasses. Prescription sunglasses, quite obviously, are sunglasses that also contain your prescription. They are available for virtually any lens prescription. They can help if you only need reading glasses or if you are presbyopic and want to read a book or magazine in intense sunlight. Along with this, prescription sunglasses come in attractive frame styles so you can be sure that you will look stylish while you are outdoors on a bright, sunny day.


Pros and Cons

So considering these basic characteristics of both transition lenses and prescription sunglasses, which should you choose? As a general disclaimer, the choice may depend. You may have some unique circumstances which will make one option more attractive than the other. But having said that, here are some key differences between transition lenses and prescription glasses that you should consider when making your decision.


First, let’s start with one key principle. Your behavior is going to play a large impact on whether you choose transition lenses or prescription sunglasses. For instance, before making your decision, gauge how much time you actually spend outside or in bright environments. For example, if you wear sunglasses most (if not all) the time, you should probably purchase sunglasses. This is because transition lenses are not as dark as sunglasses. In fact, the largest complaint that our customer service department at Rx Safety receives is on this issue alone. Customers who purchase transition lenses thinking that they will protect them from intense, sustained light exposure are often mistaken. Therefore, if you think you will be outside for long, extended periods of time (and you wear sunglasses most of the time), it is better to stick with prescription sunglasses rather than relying on transition lenses.

Another major difference between transition lenses and prescription sunglasses is convenience. Simply put, transition lenses are more convenient. You simply have one pair of glasses, meaning that you can spend less time worrying about where your other glasses are and spending more time living your life. On the other hand, if you purchase prescription sunglasses, you will need to constantly keep track of both your prescription sunglasses and your “normal” glasses. If you are an organized person, this shouldn’t be a problem. But if you have trouble keeping track of your things, you may want to more heavily consider transition lenses.

If you are budget-conscious, you may also want to choose transition lenses over prescription sunglasses. This is for a pretty obvious reason. Transition lenses can be more cost-effective than prescription sunglasses since you are only purchasing one pair of glasses. Glasses are often expensive, so if you are looking to make the most budget-conscious decision, transition lenses may be the way to go.

Finally, you also may want to consider aesthetics when you are choosing between transition lenses and prescription sunglasses. Generally speaking, prescription sunglasses are going to look more beautiful and aesthetically pleasing than transition lenses. This is not a universal rule, however. You may find transition lenses in your frames to be quite beautiful. If beauty and aesthetics are high on your list, however, you may want to place slightly more weight on selecting prescription sunglasses. By doing this, you will have an easier time finding glasses that fit your look.

Transitions Lenses Comparison in Different Environments

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The Choice Is Yours

Transition lenses and prescription lenses can make your life easier. They help you see the world around you while you are in a bright, sunny environment. They can give you the reassurance to stay outside for longer periods of time. They may even add some aesthetic benefits, which will increase your confidence as you meet with friends, family, or colleagues.

Regardless of which option you choose, you will be more comfortable. But having said that, each option offers certain advantages over others. We want you to think carefully about your choice before making your purchase. By being deliberative, you will be in a better position to make the best choice for you.

How to Order Glasses with transition lenses


RX Safety offers a wide range of safety glasses frames that match perfectly with Transition lenses. Get ready-made transition safety glasses here or choose your favorite eyeglasses, sunglasses, or prescription safety glasses.




Inside our prescription form, you can select your prescription type. Choose between, single vision, bifocal and progressive. Then, you will choose your lens material.



Customize your lenses by choosing your lens color. This is where you choose your Transition option.




The glasses can be upgraded with special coatings such as anti-fog and anti-reflective to improve their overall performance.



Now it is the time to upload or fill your prescription information. You’re done! The rest is with us. We will work on your Transition glasses and deliver to your address.



If you are interested in learning more about the difference between transition lenses and prescription glasses, don’t hesitate to contact us. At Rx Safety, our focus is on ensuring that you find and use the best glasses for your particular needs. To contact us, you can visit our website or call 1-888-245-6638. We look forward to hearing from you!

  1. Tray S says:

    I seem to have dark circles under my eyes since wearing transition glasses. Is this normal or should I go back to regular glasses.

  2. Paul Casey says:

    When driving, I like to have sunglasses on, transition lenses don’t give full protection from UV rays. As long as I can drive at night and thru rain, read the instrument panel and see distant, and do the same inside. What can you me?

    • Melissa Richard says:

      Sunglass lenses are too dark to wear at night. There is a Transition Xtractive that will darken behind the windshield of a car and comes in a polycarbonate material which already has UV protection built into the lens.

  3. Wendy Partin says:

    How come my transition rx glasses, lenses are now 2 different shades

    • Mirna Romero says:

      Hi Wendy, if you purchased the glasses with us you can contact us to return them and we will check what happened.

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