What Are UV400 and Polarized Lenses?
If you’ve ever bought a pair of sunglasses, you’ve probably seen a sticker on the lenses that says “UV Protection” or some variation. What does that actually mean? What is it protecting me from? And how do these glasses compare with other pairs?
UV, or ultraviolet, rays are electromagnetic radiation from the sun. While you can’t see these rays, UV light penetrates the earth’s atmosphere and reaches your eyes and skin. Protection from these harmful rays is important because they can cause cataracts, macular degeneration, or even eye cancers that can lead to blindness. Many of these effects don’t appear until your 40s (or later!) but since most sun exposure occurs by the time you reach your twenties, it’s critical to start protecting your eyes as soon as possible. Even on overcast days, sunglasses are still important as UV light still comes through when the sun is hidden behind the clouds.
For the best protection, you want UV400 which blocks out 99-100% of UV rays, both UVA and UVB. UV400 refers to the UV rays at the top end of the spectrum, up to the 400-nanometer wavelength. This rating ensures the best-available protection for your eyes and is a mark of high-quality sunnies.
But what about Polarized lenses, you ask? How is that different from UV protection?
Polarized lenses improve clarity and reduce eye strain on sunny days. Imagine you are out on a boat, the sun is shining bright and reflecting off of the water. The light is reflected and concentrated in certain areas, and when you’re looking at it, the glare is almost blinding! Polarized lenses are made with a special process to filter out the intense types of glare. Because of this, polarized lenses are ideal for everything from driving to outdoor adventures and activities involving water or snow.
Some of the advantages of polarized lenses include:
- Clearer vision, especially in bright light
- Increased contrast and minimal color distortion
- Reduced glare and reflection
- Reduced eye strain
While polarized lenses are great for protecting your eyes from bright light and reducing glare, they do have a few minor drawbacks, in that they are not as good for low-light situations or looking at LCD screens like your phone. But on a beautiful day, who wants to be on their phone anyway!
If you love the outdoors, treat your eyes to the best glare and UV protection available with UV400 and Polarized lenses. Your future self will thank you! And you’ll look great in your fresh new pair of FLTRs too.