Sunglasses - Do You Buy Cheap or Expensive Ones? UV Protection Is The Most Important Feature

Cheap or Expensive - Sunglasses must provide UV Protection

Cheap or Expensive - Sunglasses must provide UV Protection


Splurge Or Save On Sunglasses?

Sunglasses can cost $1 to several hundred dollars, but the ones that cost more don’t necessarily protect your eyes from ultraviolet radiation more than the others.

KPRC Local 2 tested several dozen pairs of cheap and pricey sunglasses at the University of Houston College of Optometry.

“The glasses tested a little better than I would have expected,” said Dr. Jan Bergmanson, professor at the UH College of Optometry. “It was not a scientific survey, but all of the glasses we tested provided UV protection. Some a little better than others, but they were all credible UV protectors.”

Bergmanson is a glaucoma specialist and has researched the amount of UV radiation it takes to cause damage to the eye. He said the best way to protect your eyes from UV radiation, and the possibility of damage, is to wear wraparound sunglasses or UV-blocking contact lenses.

“Nine days out of 10 in summertime we have radiation levels that are considered dangerous. There are high radiation levels all year round, but particularly this time of year, everyone needs some sort of protection,” said Bergmanson. “Most prescription glasses already have UV protection. The color of lens or darkness of lens has nothing to do with UV absorption.”

He added it is important for children to start wearing UV protective glasses when they are as young as 5 years old.

Bergmanson said he is working to try to get a standard protection factor number required on sunglasses, similar to the way sunscreens are rated. He said he believes that a standard system would make it easier for consumers and health care professionals to understand the UV protection offered by each pair of glasses.

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Sunglasses can be tricky to shop for. You want to find stylish frames, you want quality protection, you want quality construction, but you don’t want to spend a ton of money. If your not sure about which sunglasses will be right for you, contact Gordy EyeCare for an appointment and we will find the right ones for you.

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