The Real Difference Between Polarized and Non-Polarized Lenses

Polarized vs. Non-Polarized Sunglasses

When it comes to choosing lenses to protect your eyes, you don’t want to take any chances. There are several different options for lens colors that will protect your eyes from a variety of factors. You’ve probably heard the term “polarized” at some point in reference to sunglasses. In most cases, if you’re looking at two different pairs of sunglasses that are the same in every other respect, the pair with polarized lenses will have a higher price tag. It may seem like an easy choice to make to go with the less expensive option. But the polarized lenses can be a very good choice depending on your situation. In many cases, they are worth the additional cost. Depending on what activity you’re planning to wear your sunglasses for, you may want to consider purchasing polarized sunglasses. If you’re still on the fence, these are a few things you should know before you purchase your next pair of sunglasses. Here is the difference between polarized and non-polarized lenses.

What are Polarized Lenses?

These lenses are specially treated for factors that can affect your eyesight outside. Specifically, they are treated to block rays that reflect off of horizontal surfaces outside such as water or snow. Instead of the reflected light entering your eyes, it is filtered out by the lenses. This reduces glare and prevents your eyes from straining, which allows you to see better.

What Do Polarized Lenses Protect You From?

The intensity of reflected light is not only annoying, but it can also be dangerous. If you’re out on the water and you can’t see details, you could miss a potential hazard. The same goes for driving. Light reflected off of other cars or light-colored pavement could distract you while you are driving and potentially cause an accident. Beyond protecting your eyes from intense light, polarized lenses can allow you to be more aware of your surroundings, and by extension, safer outdoors.

What are the Drawbacks to Polarized Lenses?

Polarized lenses aren’t the best option in every situation. Because they filter out certain light types, they can make it difficult to see in some cases. For instance, the screens on ATMs and gas pumps will most likely be more difficult to see. Depending on the type of screen your smartphone has, your phone might be more difficult to see as well. And there are some cases where the change in light reflection is useful. In downhill skiing situations, bright patches indicate icy conditions you might want to avoid. It all depends on what activities you’re going to be engaging in while wearing them.

Polarized lenses also come in limited colors, so if you’re trying to purchase a specific style or brand of sunglasses, they might not be available as an option.

What Colors Do Polarized Lenses Come In?

Polarized lenses come in two colors– gray and brown.

Polarized Gray Lenses- Polarized gray lenses are the less extreme polarized option. They reduce glare from the water and optical clarity reduces the strain on your eye. They’re a great option if you’re light-sensitive, and they also maintain the true color of whatever you might be looking at. This means you’ll be able to see everything clearly and your vision won’t be affected by the filter of the polarization. However, they don’t have the contrast that you might need in certain situations that you might need while driving your car, for instance. Regardless, they are a great option if you want the benefits of polarized lenses but you want a milder difference between your new polarized lenses and the sunglasses you are used to. The additional protection is valuable and you’ll be able the see the world just as clearly.

Polarized Brown Lenses- Polarized brown lenses are similar to polarized gray lenses, but they take things a step further. Not only do they reduce eye-strain and prevent long-term damage, but they also provide the best possible contrast. This is a valuable asset when you might be driving your car or enjoying a day at the beach. Brown lenses also contain a red element in their coloring. The red element improves your depth perception which is particularly useful when you’re playing sports. If you play golf, baseball, tennis, football or soccer outdoors, these are a great option for you. Whether it’s a sunny or overcast day, they’ll help with your depth perception. These are a great option for everyday use, and they have anti-fatigue properties that will keep you from experiencing pain from squinting over the course of the day.

When Are Polarized Lenses Practical?

If you’re spending any amount of time outside whether you’re playing sports, out on the water, or walking your dog, polarized lenses are a great way to decrease sun damage to your eyes. The good news is there are plenty of stylish options that will give you the look and protection you’re going for. Don’t feel like you have to sacrifice your eye health for the sake of fashion. The benefits of polarized lenses far outweigh the potential inconvenience of having your choice of sunglasses restricted. In addition, many companies will give you the option to special order polarized lenses for your sunglasses, so if there is a particular pair you have your heart set on, you might be able to get them customized for both fashion and function.

Regardless of the activity that you’ll be participating in, polarized sunglasses are a good protection measure to take. Spending the day squinting out at the water can cause headaches and eye fatigue, not to mention it’ll take the fun out of your day at the beach! And you don’t want to miss the winning shot because you were looking for the ball and the sun was so bright that you missed.

Long term damage to your eyes from a lack of sun protection can be serious and very difficult to deal with. Consequences could include chronic dry eye or an increased risk of eye infection. Polarized sunglasses will give you the tools you need to take part in all of the activities you love without compromising your eyesight. Wondering which polarized lenses will work best for you? RX Safety has plenty of options and a professional team who will be happy to answer any other questions you might have about polarized lens options.

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