Transition lenses and sunglasses

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Most people resort to sunglasses for UV protection. This is the commonest practice. But for people who need visual aid from prescription eyeglasses, using regular sunglasses outdoors may cause a confliction. Clip on sunglasses and prescription sunglasses have been innovatively created to eliminate this concern. While these two solutions are gaining recognition, fewer people know another option that is generally more effective and advanced. They are called photochromic lenses and Transitions Optical is the most famous manufacturer.

Transitions lenses and sunglassesBenefits of Transitions lenses

In detail, Transitions lenses can change their colors according to surrounding light conditions. The company claims that Transitions lenses can darken in bright conditions so as to provide enough UV protection as well as sunglasses do. This advocated feature of Transitions lenses actually attracts a large group of customers, because they think that a separate pair of sunglasses is bothersome. In the remaining part, this article instead states some drawbacks of Transitions lenses, with an expectation enable customers interested in these lenses to get a comprehensive evaluation.

HEV protection is beyond Transitions lenses

Transitions lenses can provide UV 400 protection, which is sufficient in most states of USA. But these lenses can not replace sunglasses in some aspects. For example, Transitions lenses do not fight against high energy visible (HEV) light. Situated in the violet band from 380 to 530 nm in the visible spectrum, high energy visible light is high-frequent and commonly referred as the near UV range. There is a high occurrence of HEV light from pools, sidewalks and sand.

HEV protection from sunglasses is important for ordinary people, especially for younger children because their eye lenses are thought to transmit more HEV light than adults. Without proper protection, HEV light may lead to age-related macular degeneration, which has been proved by quite a few studies. Only special HEV sunglasses can filter out the near UV range. Currently, only polarized sunglasses can offer protection against HEV light.

Transitions lenses are ineffective behind a windshield

In addition, Transitions lenses will not darken when the wearer is in a vehicle with UV protected windshield. The exact reason is that Transitions lenses will only make response to the changes in the amount of UV rays in the current environment. When UV radiation is blocked by a windshield, Transitions lenses on the wearer’s face inside the car will not be triggered. In this case, Transitions lenses are too clear to provide continual protection against glare and eyestrain. These lenses just maintain the clear status as they do in an indoor environment. Due to this shortcoming, Transitions lenses behind a vehicle windshield are actually less helpful than regular sunglasses.

Transitions lenses offer a small coverage

Always coupled with small frames that only cover the immediate eye area and little of the surrounding area, Transitions lenses only offer normal eye protection against UV light. Most sunglasses provide a larger coverage that can protect the fragile skin and still block sunlight from more angles. In this way, regular sunglasses offer extended protection against harmful rays.

Transitions lenses are not for everyone

In conclusion, Transitions lenses are a good choice for people who need to regularly move from indoors to outdoors or vice versa. This group of people will gain great convenience from these glasses. They no longer need to make switches between prescription glasses and UV sunglasses from time to time. But for those spending an extended amount of time outdoors, sunglasses are irreplaceable.