Categories Eyewear

Blue Light Glasses: Do They Work

Blue light glasses, also known as “blue light blocking glasses,” are designed to filter out the blue light rays emitted from digital screens. These glasses usually have lenses with a yellow tint and may not require prescription lenses. This article explains blue light glasses, defines blue light, discusses how they work, and explores their potential benefits and effects.

The Science of Blue Light

The visible light spectrum is the range of electromagnetic radiation visible to the human eye. It spans from violet to red, with violet having the shortest wavelength and highest energy and red having the longest wavelength and lowest energy. Blue light is a type of visible light with a shorter wavelength and higher energy than other colours in the visible light spectrum.

While blue light is naturally present in sunlight and helps regulate our circadian rhythms, exposure to blue light from digital screens, energy-efficient lighting, and other artificial sources has raised concerns about its potential effects on our health. Studies have suggested that overexposure to blue light can disrupt our sleep-wake cycle and negatively impact our health, causing digital eye strain, headaches, and even macular degeneration.

It is important to note that blue light exposure is not the only factor that can affect eye health. Other factors, such as age, genetics, and lifestyle habits, can also play a role. That’s why it is important to have regular eye exams to assess your overall eye health.

light spectrum

Benefits of Blue Light

While overexposure to blue light can have negative effects, there are also potential benefits. Research has shown that blue light can have positive effects on alertness and cognitive function, making it a popular choice for use in light therapy for seasonal affective disorder (SAD) and other mood disorders.

Additionally, blue light therapy has been used in dermatology to treat various skin conditions, including acne, psoriasis, and eczema. Blue light penetrates the skin and has antimicrobial properties that can kill bacteria on the surface, reducing inflammation and improving skin texture.

Negative Effects of Blue Light

Overexposure to blue light can negatively affect our health, particularly our eyes and the sleep-wake cycle. Digital eye strain, also known as computer vision syndrome, is a common symptom of overexposure to blue light from digital screens. Other symptoms include headaches, blurred vision, dry eyes, and neck and shoulder pain.

Furthermore, exposure to blue light at night can disrupt our sleep-wake cycle, making falling and staying asleep harder. Blue light suppresses the production of melatonin, the hormone that regulates our sleep-wake cycle. Poor sleep quality can have a wide range of negative effects on our overall health, including increased risk for obesity, diabetes, and heart disease.

If you are experiencing any of these symptoms or are concerned about your blue light exposure, it is important to consult an optometrist near you. They can assess your eye health and recommend reducing blue light exposure, such as using blue light-blocking glasses or reducing screen time before bedtime. 

Managing Blue Light Exposure

Managing blue light exposure is important in maintaining eye health and overall well-being in the digital era. Here are some tips to help you manage your blue light exposure:

1. Use blue light-blocking glasses

Blue light-blocking glasses are designed to filter out the blue light rays emitted from digital screens. These glasses are available in prescription and non-prescription lenses and may help reduce digital eye strain and improve sleep quality.

2. Reduce screen time before bedtime

Exposure to blue light at night can disrupt our sleep-wake cycle, making falling and staying asleep harder. To reduce your exposure to blue light before bedtime, avoid using electronic devices for at least an hour before bed.

3. Adjust your screen settings

Most electronic devices have settings that allow you to adjust your screen’s brightness and colour temperature. Reducing the brightness and shifting the colour temperature to the warmer end of the spectrum can help reduce your exposure to blue light.

4. Take breaks:

Frequent breaks from electronic devices can help reduce digital eye strain and improve overall eye health. Follow the 20-20-20 rule: Every 20 minutes, take a 20-second break and look at something 20 feet away.

Effectiveness of Blue Light Glasses

Blue light glasses have become increasingly popular in recent years as more people have become aware of the potential negative effects of blue light exposure from digital screens. These glasses are designed to filter out blue light rays emitted from screens, helping to reduce digital eye strain and improve sleep quality.

Some research has shown that blue light glasses can effectively reduce the symptoms of digital eye strain. In one study, participants who wore blue light glasses reported less eye strain and headaches than those who did not. Another study found that participants wearing blue light glasses experienced improved sleep quality and were more alert during the day.

So when and how should you use blue light glasses effectively? It is best to consult with an eye doctor near you to determine if they are right for you. If you spend a lot of time in front of digital screens, especially in the evenings, blue light glasses may be a good option to help reduce digital eye strain and improve sleep quality.

Additionally, it is important to follow other tips for managing blue light exposure, such as reducing screen time before bedtime, adjusting screen settings, and taking frequent breaks. These strategies, in combination with blue light glasses, can help reduce the negative effects of blue light exposure on your health.

In summary, while the effectiveness of blue light glasses may vary from person to person, they can be useful tools for reducing digital eye strain and improving sleep quality for those who spend a lot of time in front of digital screens. It is important to consult an eye doctor near you to determine if blue light glasses are right for you and follow other tips for managing blue light exposure.

Blue Light Glasses

Conclusion

Blue light glasses can be useful for managing blue light exposure and reducing the negative effects of digital eye strain and disrupted sleep-wake cycles. However, it is important to remember that blue light exposure is just one factor that can affect eye health, and regular eye exams with an optometrist are crucial for maintaining overall eye health. Consult an optometrist near you if you are experiencing any symptoms or are concerned about your blue light exposure. If you live in Toronto, especially in the Beaches or Rosedale-Yorkville area, there are many eye clinics and optometrists who can provide comprehensive eye exams and help you manage your blue light exposure. A quick online search for “eye exams Toronto,” “optometrist near me,” or “optometry near me” can help you find a qualified eye doctor in your area. Taking care of your eye health is essential for your overall well-being, so don’t hesitate to seek professional help if you need it.

FAQs

Q: Can blue light glasses prevent eye damage from screens?

Blue light glasses can help reduce exposure to blue light, which is associated with digital eye strain. However, different individuals’ experience with blue light glasses can vary, and taking regular breaks and practising good screen habits is the most important. 

Q: Do blue light glasses have a prescription?

Blue light glasses are available with and without prescription lenses, so you can choose the option that best suits your needs.

Q: How do I know if blue light glasses work for me?

If you notice a reduction in eye strain, improved sleep quality, or increased comfort when using digital screens, then blue light glasses are likely working for you.

Q: Where can I purchase blue light glasses?

Blue light glasses are available from various retailers, including optical stores, online retailers, and specialty eyewear shops. You can find one at 360 Eyecare. Give us a call at  416-698-3937 and  416-901-2725 or click to arrange a consultation with 360 Eyecaree in Beaches or Rosedale-Yorkville, Toronto.

Categories Eyewear
remove scratches from glasses

How to Remove Scratches From Glasses

Eyeglasses are vital in providing clear vision to those who rely on them. However, dealing with scratches and damage can be an everyday challenge. Despite your best efforts to care for your glasses, accidents can happen, leading to scratches and other types of damage.

If you’re dealing with scratches on your glasses, there are several do-it-yourself methods available. However, it’s crucial to proceed with caution, as these methods may sometimes result in further damage to your lenses. Before attempting any fixes for scratched glasses, it’s highly recommended to consult your eye doctor or optician in Toronto. Their expertise can help you determine the best course of action to preserve the clarity of your lenses.

In this article, we’ll discuss some essential tips on how to care for and maintain your eyeglasses. So, let’s get started!

What Causes Scratches

Taking care of your glasses or sunglasses is crucial to maintaining their original condition, but even with the utmost care, they can be susceptible to scratches. Modern lenses are predominantly made of plastic, which is considered safer but more prone to scratches due to its softer nature, unlike the older-style glass lenses.

Various factors contribute to the potential for scratching your lenses. Particles like lint and dust can stick to your lenses, and rubbing them with such particles can lead to scratches. Surprisingly, seemingly gentle fabrics and tissues can be surprisingly abrasive. Everyday items such as clothing, tissues, and towels have the potential to leave your lenses scratched and covered in lint.

Your own actions can also increase the risk of scratches. Improper cleaning techniques, such as using harsh chemicals or abrasive materials, can damage the lens surface. Storing your glasses without protective cases exposes them to potential hazards, while accidental drops can result in scratches or other forms of damage.

Despite advancements in lens coatings and treatments designed to enhance their durability, it is essential to handle your eyeglasses with care. Adopting good practices, such as using a microfiber cloth designed for cleaning lenses and storing them in protective cases when not in use, can significantly reduce the risk of scratches. By taking these precautions, you can ensure that your lenses maintain their original clarity and remain scratch-free for as long as possible.

How Bad are Scratches on your Glasses

When it comes to glasses, scratches are often an unavoidable annoyance that can significantly impact your vision and overall experience wearing them. While minor scratches may only cause slight visual distortion, which can still be manageable for day-to-day activities, deeper or numerous scratches can have more pronounced effects. These can include disturbances in your vision, making it harder to see clearly or causing blurriness, obstructing your field of vision or impairing your ability to see objects and details. Additionally, headaches can be a common issue due to straining your eyes to compensate for the visual impairment caused by the scratches.

That’s why promptly addressing any scratches on your glasses is crucial. By doing so, you can maintain optimal vision clarity and comfort while wearing them. Don’t let scratches ruin your vision; take care of them as soon as possible to keep your glasses in top shape.

Why You Shouldn’t Remove Scratches Yourself

When you’re faced with scratched eyeglass lenses, it can be tempting to take matters into your own hands and experiment with various household remedies to restore their original condition. However, such DIY methods can often do more harm than good.

The lenses of your eyeglasses are carefully crafted with special coatings and treatments that not only enhance your vision but also provide crucial protection against glare and harmful UV rays. These coatings are finely balanced to ensure optimal performance. Attempting to remove scratches without the proper knowledge or tools can disrupt this delicate balance, resulting in compromised vision, reduced clarity, and a shorter lifespan for your eyewear.

Household products like toothpaste or baking soda, often suggested for scratch removal, can actually make the damage worse. Their gritty nature can further scratch the lens surface, making the situation worse instead of better.

To avoid any potential damage, it’s highly recommended to seek professional advice from your eye doctor or optician before attempting any DIY repairs on your glasses. These professionals have the expertise and specialized tools necessary to accurately assess the extent of the damage and recommend the most suitable solutions.

They can determine whether the scratches can be safely removed, although this is rarely the case. In most instances, the damage is irreversible, and new lenses are the best solution. However, if the scratches are minor and do not significantly impact your vision, leaving them untouched might be a viable option. Consulting with a professional ensures that you make an informed decision that preserves the integrity and performance of your eyewear.

Preventing Scratches

It’s essential to maintain good cleaning and storage practices to protect the longevity and clarity of your eyeglasses. Here are some detailed steps to help prevent scratches and other damage:

First things first- 

  • Use a Sturdy Storage Case: Make sure to store your glasses in a hard storage case when you’re not wearing them. Doing so will shield them from accidental bumps and scratches. Avoid placing them face down, in your pocket or bag, or hanging them from your collar, as these can all lead to potential damage.
  • Avoid Extreme Temperatures: It’s a no-brainer, but never leave your glasses in a hot car, as excessive heat can damage scratch-resistant coatings and cause lens warping. Instead, keep them in a cool, dry place.
  • Keep Your Glasses Clean: Regular cleaning is crucial to prevent scratches. Use a soft, lint-free microfiber cloth to gently wipe away dirt, dust, oils, and fingerprints from your lenses. Avoid using rough materials that could scratch the lens surface.
  • Use Approved Cleaning Solutions: Always opt for an optometrist-approved lens cleaning spray that’s safe for your lenses and any specialized coatings they may have. If you don’t have a specific cleaning solution, you can also use a mild dish soap diluted with water. Apply the solution with minimal pressure to avoid damaging the lenses.

Conclusion

Taking good care of your eyewear is crucial to keep them in excellent condition. Proper maintenance and cleaning can help minimize scratches and ensure durability. In case you do notice any scratches on your glasses, don’t fret. Simply book an appointment with 360 Eyecare located in Rosedale or Beaches. Our team can assist you with scratch-resistant coating options and provide valuable advice on how to maintain the cleanliness and durability of your glasses for an extended period.

FAQs

Q: What should I use to clean my eyeglasses?

Use a mild soap or dishwashing liquid and lukewarm water to clean your eyeglasses. Avoid using harsh chemicals or abrasive materials that can damage the lenses or frames.

Q: Can I use alcohol-based cleaners to clean my eyeglasses?

It’s best to avoid alcohol-based cleaners, as they can strip away lens coatings and damage the frames. Stick to mild soap and water for cleaning.

Q: How should I dry my eyeglasses after cleaning them?

Use a clean, lint-free cloth to gently dry your eyeglasses. Avoid using paper towels or tissues, as they can scratch the lenses.

Categories Eyewear
eyeglasses

Eyeglasses Across History

Those who depend on eyeglasses to see the beauties of this world owe gratitude to the Romans who discovered that a piece of glass could be manipulated to enlarge texts. Eyeglasses have had an impact on human history. Providing clarity and vision to millions, and in this article, we travel through time to unravel the evolution of eyeglasses and their impact on society. Stay with us.

The Early Visionaries

Our story begins in the 1st century when the first evidence of vision aids emerged. There are records of Roman philosopher Seneca magnifying text with a glass globe of water and Emperor Nero needing a magnifying emerald to see gladiator fights more clearly. However, it wasn’t until the 13th century that the concept of corrective lenses truly took shape. 

Wealthy Romans commissioned glass blowers to make glass spheres. These glasses, put against small text, made the letters and words legible. Over time, glass workers and intellects continued to perfect eyeglasses, creating thinner and thinner curved glass blocks and lenses. This task was difficult because the glass had to be as clear, clean, and smooth as possible to minimise distortion. Little did they know these rudimentary spectacles would lay the groundwork for an industry that continues to thrive today.

From Glass Spheres To Glass Lenses

While we are not exactly sure who set these glass lenses into a frame, Salvino D’Armate, a craftsman from Florence, is often credited with inventing the first wearable eyeglasses around 1284. These were mostly worn by monks, who were some of the only people allowed to learn to read and write at the time.  They also needed to be able to see tiny details to create their breathtaking calligraphy. But before then, these monks found transparent quartz fashioned into polished domes. They called these devices “reading stones.” 

It was two centuries before it occurred to someone to try attaching a pair of reading stones to a wearable frame to make them easier to use. This is how Salvino D’Armate came into the picture. His early spectacles consisted of convex lenses held in place by frames that balanced on the bridge of the nose. The invention quickly spread across Europe, marking the beginning of a new era for those struggling with vision. 

As mentioned, these early glasses were more cumbersome than those you wear today. Often, thick curved glass lenses were set into leather or wooden frames. So, they were far less comfortable than the glasses you might wear while reading this post. As a result, enterprising monks and wealthy glass-wearers were motivated to improve the design for size, efficiency, and comfort.

The Modern Perspective

As spectacles gained popularity, artisans and inventors began experimenting with different lens shapes and materials. In the 17th century, lenses began to be ground into concave shapes to correct short-sightedness. Most of the glasses made during these first several hundred years were devoted to farsighted people to help them read.  

The 19th century marked a period of remarkable progress in optometry and lens manufacturing methods. Benjamin Franklin, a well-known American polymath, made a significant contribution to this field by inventing bifocal lenses around 1784. These lenses corrected both near and distant vision in a single pair of spectacles. Franklin’s invention paved the way for multifocal lenses and specialized lens coatings advancements.

Fast forward to today, where eyeglasses have seamlessly integrated into our daily lives. From sleek, minimalist designs to bold, statement frames, the options are as diverse as those who wear them. But it’s not just about style; it’s about enhancing the quality of life through clear vision.

Your Guide to Buying Eyeglasses in Toronto

Now, let’s zoom in on Canada, specifically Toronto. You’re in the right place if you’re searching for eyeglasses that correct your vision and reflect your style. With its vibrant culture and diverse population, Toronto is a hub for eyewear enthusiasts. 

To find the ideal eyeglasses in Toronto, it’s good to approach the process with a blend of practicality and style. Here are a few tips for eyeglasses matching your style and vision needs.

Identify Your Vision Needs

Before looking at all the different glass frames, ensure you know what your eyes need. Whether you’re nearsighted, farsighted, or dealing with astigmatism, knowing your prescription will help you pick the right glasses. After an eye exam, you can get your prescription from an optometrist or ophthalmologist. Some eyewear stores, such as 360 Eyecare, offer comprehensive eye exams to ensure you get the perfect pair of glasses or contact lenses.

Frame the Style

Consider your style and the occasions you’ll be wearing your glasses. Are you after a professional look for the office or a bold statement piece for social events? At 360 Eyecare, we offer an extensive range of premium fashion and handmade designer eyeglasses and sunglasses featuring top brands like Lafont, Vanni, Tom Ford, Burberry, and more. For detailed information about our selection of lenses, please visit our pages on Prescription Lenses and Custom Lenses.

Explore Local Designers

Supporting local businesses adds a unique touch to your eyewear journey. Toronto has a vibrant community of independent designers, each with a distinctive aesthetic. Explore these local gems to find frames that enhance your vision and contribute to the city’s creative spirit. To learn more, you can visit 360 Eyecare at 2199 Queen Street East, Toronto, ON  M4E 1E5, or 120 Bloor Street East, Unit 100B, Toronto, ON  M4W 1B7.

Embrace Technology

In a city that embraces innovation, eyewear boutiques in downtown Toronto often integrate cutting-edge technology. Explore lenses with anti-glare coatings, blue light filters, and lightweight materials that prioritize comfort and functionality.

Customer Reviews Matter

Before finalizing your purchase, take a moment to look into customer reviews. Peer insights can provide valuable information about the durability, customer service, and overall satisfaction associated with a particular eyewear boutique.

Visit Multiple Boutiques

Toronto’s diverse neighborhoods house many eyewear boutiques, each with unique offerings. Take the time to explore multiple establishments to ensure you find the perfect match. From trendy Queen Street to upscale Yorkville, each neighborhood adds a different flavor to your eyewear hunt.

Conclusion

In recent years, glasses have gone beyond just helping people see better—they’ve become a fashion statement. Famous designers and brands now see glasses as an important part of their collections, focusing on both looks and practicality. Today, a wide variety of styles, shapes, colors, and materials are available, so you can pick glasses that match your unique style.

Glasses have come a long way since ancient times, evolving from simple tools to fashion accessories. Their long history shows how important they are in today’s society and likely will be for a long time.

With all this in mind, finding the perfect glasses in Toronto is like a personalized adventure. Whether you care most about style, practicality, or both, Toronto’s eyeglasses boutiques have something for everyone.

So, why wait? Check out 360 Eyecare in Beaches or Rosedale today and find the perfect glasses. We will be expecting you. 

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: How long does it typically take to get a pair of prescription eyeglasses in Toronto?

The turnaround time for prescription eyeglasses can vary depending on lens complexity, frame availability, and additional coatings or features. 360 Eyecare provides your customized eyeglasses within one to two weeks. Feel free to inquire about specific timelines when making your purchase.

Q: Do Toronto eyewear boutiques provide adjustments or repairs for purchased glasses?

Yes, most eyewear boutiques in Toronto offer complimentary adjustments for the glasses you purchase. If you encounter any issues or need minor tweaks for a perfect fit, simply reach out to 360 Eyecare. We will happily assist you with adjustments and, if needed, minor repairs.

Q: Are virtual shopping available?

Yes, some boutiques in Toronto leverage technology to offer virtual shopping experiences. This allows you to shop frames virtually. Book a free virtual shopping experience with 360 Eyecare.

Categories Eyewear
sun protection. Bottles of sun lotion and sunglasses on the beach with a small starfish.

Sun Protection

sun protection. Bottles of sun lotion and sunglasses on the beach with a small starfish.Protecting our eyes from the harsh rays of the sun is not only an essential aspect of maintaining clear vision but also crucial in safeguarding our overall eye health. The sun’s ultraviolet (UV) radiation can have harmful effects on the delicate structures of our eyes, potentially leading to eye conditions such as cataracts, macular degeneration, and even permanent damage to the retina. With the eyes being highly sensitive to UV exposure, it is vital to take proactive measures to shield them from the sun’s harmful rays. Whether it’s a sunny day or even on cloudy occasions, incorporating effective sun protection for our eyes is a simple yet indispensable step towards preserving our vision and enjoying a lifetime of healthy eyesight.

What Is Ultraviolet Light & What Does It Do To My Eyes?

When talking about ultraviolet light – or UV light – it’s helpful to think of light as a spectrum. UV light is part of that spectrum, but is invisible to the naked eye. Unless you work as a mechanic regularly using heavy duty welders that produce their own UV light or make frequent use of a tanning bed, most of the UV light you will ever be exposed to in your lifetime comes from the sun. Let’s get familiar with UV terms and how we can improve our sun protection.

UV-A and UV-B

You’ve likely heard the terms “UV-A” and “UV-B” before, so what’s the difference? These are sub-classifications of UV relating to how “long” or “short” the UV wavelength is, from the peak of one “crest” of the wave to the next. UV-A rays have the longest wavelengths of UV light and are not blocked or hindered by the natural shielding in our atmosphere. This is the type of UV that we are most exposed to, and can cause damage to our eyes and skin cells. UV-B rays have shorter wavelengths and can be mostly absorbed by our atmosphere, but in certain parts of the Earth or at certain times of the year the amount of UV-B that can come through is far greater. UV-B is also significantly damaging to our skin and eyes, directly leading to significant skin burns and the development of skin cancer.

UV-C

“UV-C” also exists, but the wavelength is so short this type of UV light is completely absorbed by our natural atmosphere, and thus we are never exposed to the harmful effects of it outside of a few, rare specific instances.

What does UV light do to our eyes when exposed?

Sun protection - UV protection. Person with long blonde hair smiling, wearing yellow sunglassesand looking upwards. They are holding a yellow and white striped umbrella.

UV light passes through our eyes more easily than even visible light, and can hasten the aging of the cells in our eyes much like it can with skin. This can result in the lens inside of our eyes becoming opaque and turning into an early cataract which will impair vision over time and eventually require surgical removal. UV light can also cause the growth of fat and protein deposits on the surface of the eye called a pinguecula that can cause irritation and can affect the tear film covering the eye. UV light can also cause skin cancers –  basal or squamous cell carcinomas – to develop on the eyelids, and early research suggests a link between UV light and age-related macular degeneration, though more study on this link is needed.

As you can see, it’s just as important to protect your eyes from the harmful effects of UV light from the sun as it is to protect your skin while outdoors with UV blocking sunscreen. But while you can’t apply sunscreen to your eyes, there are options in the form of eyewear designed with sun protection in mind. Today, we’ll explore three of these options.

Photochromic Lenses for Sun Protection

Sun protection - photochromic lenses. A pair of eyeglasses and a pair of sunglasses on a yellow and white background.The first option for sun protection is arguably the simplest. Sidestepping the need for an extra frame for sun lenses, photochromic lenses combine regular glasses and sunglasses into one convenient pair.

Photochromic lenses use the UV light to their advantage. These lenses are fabricated with additional organic molecules embedded in the material (either plastic or polycarbonate) that are transparent under normal lighting conditions. Once in the presence of higher levels of UV light, such as the amount produced by the sun, the molecules undergo a temporary chemical shift and lose their transparency, in effect becoming “darker”. Because this change only happens when exposed to UV light, returning indoors where most of the light is artificial the molecules return to their transparent state and the lenses become clear again.

Why choose photochromic lenses?

Photochromic lenses are an excellent option for their convenience and cost effectiveness. They are available in the three standard sun colours of grey, brown and grey-green, and a few manufacturers have been able to formulate lenses that change to more fun and fashionable colours such as blue and amethyst. There are some that can transition with a mirror coating, and others that are able to incorporate a polarization filter to further help with bright light and glare. 

Are there any drawbacks to photochromic lenses?

While these lenses are convenient for their ability to adapt under certain lighting conditions and offer both clear vision correction and sun protection in a single pair, there are some drawbacks. Because these lenses need to be physically exposed to UV light to activate the change, most photochromic lenses cannot change while inside of a vehicle, as windows and windshields are coated for UV protection as an industry standard. On days that are both bright and simultaneously overcast, the lenses will not get as dark as they would on a cloudless day. Photochromic lenses are also sensitive to sudden temperature changes and temperature extremes, and the transition from clear to dark and back again is lessened and slows down.

Despite these drawbacks, photochromic lenses are an excellent choice for those who don’t want to worry about carrying an extra pair to swap to while outdoors. But for those who do want the superior protection of actual sun lenses, there is an option that is still convenient and more light-weight than a second pair of sunglasses.

Custom Clip-Ons for Sun Protection

Sun protection. Man wearing sunglasses and hat holds side of sunglasses, smiling, with beach in the backgroundAnother option for sun protection can be just as simple as the previous: having clip-ons made to fit your primary pair of everyday glasses. 

Clip-ons can be thought of as a separate pair of sunglasses, with many of the same benefits and avoiding the drawback of having a whole bulky second pair to carry around. Clip-ons are sleek, thin and lightweight, and can be stored in the same case as the pair they are made for, or a separate case about the size of a phone. Most clip-ons typically use small hooks on the sides to be secured to the frames, but some are specifically made by frame manufacturers for their own line and might fasten using alternate means such as magnets.

Why choose custom clip-ons?

It is very simple to have custom clip-ons made for a frame; there are very few examples of frame styles that shouldn’t or can’t accomodate a clip-on for it. With custom clip-ons, patients can select their preferred lens colour, metal wire colour, polarization style, and even attachment style. Most clips are made from titanium, a light-weight, flexible yet durable material.

Are there any drawbacks to clip-ons?

Just like with photochromic lenses, there are some drawbacks to clip-ons. While clip-ons can be made for almost every style of frame, there are a few that won’t work well. Custom clip-ons have an upper size limit, so oversized glasses are less likely to have clips made for them. Because of the way they hook onto the frame, clip-ons are not advised for semi-rimless and rimless glasses, as the hooks are more likely to scratch the lenses. Finally, clip-ons only fit the frame they are made for, so if something happens to the glasses the clips are made for – they break, get lost, etc. – you are going to need to replace both the glasses and the clips. 

Sunglasses for Sun Protection

hat and sunglasses on the beach for sun protectionOf course, you can’t have a discussion about sun protection options without talking about the most obvious choice: an actual pair of sunglasses

Sunglasses come in a variety of shapes, sizes, styles and colours. From contemporarily fashionable to timeless and sporty, sunglasses have been the ultimate sunshine accessory regardless of whether you require a prescription or not. But more than complimenting your personal sense of style, sunglasses are one of the most important tools for UV light protection.

Designed to filter out harmful UV rays, sunglasses shield our delicate eyes from the damaging effects of the sun’s radiation. By reducing the risk of eye conditions like cataracts, macular degeneration, and photokeratitis, these shades help preserve our long-term eye health.

Why choose sunglasses?

Sunglass lenses can be made to a prescription, can be made with a variety of colours and tint levels, and can have polarization added in to help with light sensitivity and sharp glare reduction. With dedicated sunglasses, you can feel confident in having both your vision correction and your eyes protected from the sun at the same time.

Your sun lenses should be rated for UV 400 protection

Of course, not all sunglasses are made equally. In order to ensure adequate protection in today’s climate, you should make sure that your sun lenses are rated for UV 400 protection, which will provide almost 100% coverage against UVA and UVB exposure. If you are having custom lenses done through your optometrist or local optician, chances are the lenses will be made with UV 400 protection built in as a standard, but it never hurts to ask and make sure. However, if you are simply purchasing a pair of sunglasses off the shelf then it’s best to ask the sales person if they can confirm the level of UV protection in the existing lenses. 

Darker lenses don't always equal better protection

The colour of the lens will have no bearing on the protection level; darker does not necessarily mean better in this case, and since darker lenses cause the pupils to expand and take in more light, dark lenses without UV 400 protection actually cause your eyes to absorb more UV light than if you weren’t wearing anything at all. Polarization and UV 400 are also two separate treatments, so you can’t assume that your polarized sun lenses have UV 400 protection built in as well. When in doubt, it’s always best to ask an optical professional.

Whether you decide that photochromic lenses, custom clip-ons or a dedicated pair of sunglasses are the best option for your needs, at the end of the day UV light can be quite damaging to our eyes, and they need protection from UV light. Have a question about which one might be better for you? Pay us a visit at one of our two locations – 360 EyeCare Beaches and 360 EyeCare Rosedale – to speak with one of our eye care professionals.