The choices for sunglasses are endless these days, metal frames, plastic frames, tinted lens or regular dark lens. One of the more popular questions is, are polarized sunglasses actually better? Should you spend a couple more dollars on polarized sunglasses?
Polarized sunglasses were first used by pilots so they could see the different spots the sun shun during the day. Polarized lenses reduce the glare of the sun; these types of sunglasses are very popular amongst outdoor enthusiast, from fishermen to skiers.
The way the polarized lens work is simple. When light hits a surface it is being scattered in all directions, because of this glare we all wear sunglasses when we are outdoors. While regular sunglasses diminish the glare, polarized sunglasses will cause the light waves to travel in the same direction absorbing the light thus improving visibility.
Contrary to popular belief the lenses for polarized sunglasses don’t have a tint. The misconception came about, due to earlier models. These days however you can find polarized sunglasses with and without the tints.
So what are the benefits of using polarized sunglasses?
- Polarized lenses block 100% of glare, this helps reduce eyestrain. Regular sunglasses won’t block glare which will eventually cause eye fatigue due to continuous squinting.
- Polarized lenses will also help enhance an image and its color; your surrounding will have bolder and brighter colors and look clearer. These lenses are used a lot for in photo shoots since they will automatically enhance the image.
See our great post on Polarized vs. Non Polarized Lenses.
Even though the polarized sunglasses are widely recommended for outdoor activities and driving for long distances they do have their disadvantage. One of which is not using it for skiing, especially downhill skiing. Skiers claim they have a hard time differentiating between an ice patch and a mogul (bumps caused by sharp turns) as a result of sunbeams reflecting from the snow. Another disadvantage is that polarized lenses can make it really hard to read LCD display devices such as a GPS.
Even though polarized sunglasses are used mainly by those who prefer outdoor sports, don’t think that there aren’t any fashionable polarized sunglasses out there. Brands like Ray Ban, Versace and Ralph Lauren have polarized sunglasses that go with today’s trends.
So should you invest in a pair of polarized sunglasses?
The answer is yes; especially if you are outdoors on a regular basis, whether it’s hiking or fishing, these lenses will help enhance your outdoor experience and performance.