Polarized sunglasses have become increasingly popular in the last couple of years. Outdoor enthusiasts have praised their benefits especially for watersports, fishing, and biking, which we Canadians tend to do an abundance of during the summer months. These practical sunglasses have even become somewhat of an unexpected fashion accessory for trendsetters.

Though the focus seems to be on outdoor activities, polarized lenses have many other benefits.  In order to find out if polarized sunglasses are right for you, let’s first find out what they are, how they work and what their advantages are.

First things first- how do polarized sunglasses work?

Normal sunglasses evenly decrease the amount of light reflected from every surface by dimming and reducing both horizontal and vertical light.

Polarized sunglasses work to eliminate glare by blocking out any horizontal light and only allowing for vertical light to pass through. Since the polarized lenses are selective, they allow for a much clearer vision of all vertical light. This eliminates the glare that happens when sunlight reflects off of horizontal surfaces like water, snow, the road, or the hoods of cars.

Advantages

The focus for the benefits of polarized lenses tends to be on outdoor activities, but polarized sunglasses also have many advantages for many daily activities. Picture yourself driving through rush hour traffic with the glare from the hoods of cars all around you. If your kids arguing in the back seat weren’t enough of a distraction, these types of glares can cause a lot of visual interference while driving.  By reducing glare, polarized lenses also reduce eyestrain that is experienced when focusing your vision for extended periods of time (road trip anyone?). Overall, polarized lenses will improve your visual comfort, and what’s not to like about that?

Disadvantages

Though polarized lenses are recommended for many situations, they can also be a hazard in some circumstances. For example, though polarized lenses are great for blocking reflections from the snow, it is not recommended to wear them while downhill skiing, as icy patches in the snow are easily disguised by the lenses.

Whether you intend to wear your polarized lenses as a fashion statement or for pure practicality, we are sure that you will enjoy all of the benefits of your new sunglasses. Stop by Laurier Optical and one of our optometrists will be happy to discuss the benefits of these lenses for your lifestyle, and help you find a frame that suits your needs!

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