Don’t let the sun sabotage your skin & eyes, get great sunglasses from Coastal.com by Alison Blackman, advicesisters.com
I learned about the sea, and sailing, and developed a love of it, as a toddler. In fact, my earliest memory of my mother is of her lifting the centerboard of the first boat my parents purchased (the Gemini 1, named after their twins), and pumping the bilge (old wooden boats leak and this one eventually returned itself to the sea breaking free of its’ mooring during a storm). I spent most of my weekends on the water, and when I wasn’t on the boat with my parents, I was on the beach at Coney Island or Manhattan Beach, nearby, with my Grandmother. Then, we didn’t really know so much about how damaging the sun’s UVA/UVB rays could be long term. I almost never wore sunglasses and did my best to avoid to awful, brown, sticky, foul-smelling coal-tar concoction called “Skol” the adults tried to put on my skin (checking the ingredients of SKOL this morning, Skol contained “alcohol 54% by volume, hexahydroxyethyl tannic acid, aluminum chloride, salol, menthol, tertiary butyl cresol.” The tannic acid, “an exclusive, patented form,” literally tanned the skin (and stained clothing) while providing a mild degree of sun protection; the salol (phenyl salicylate) was also a sunscreening agent-ecch!).
With fair, freckled skin and stawberry blonde hair, I never tanned, but I did burn — a lot. I didn’t wear sunglasses much and I didn’t weaer eyeglasses until the fifth grade. Transitions” lenses didn’t exist even if I had worn glasses. I squinted into the sun, all the time. But sadly, now I know (and so do you) that everyone is at risk for potential skin and eye damage, not to mention premature aging. Still, it’s never too late to start protecting yourself. Check our current, upcoming and archived beauty articles to find fabulous sunblocks (use our search box at the upper right hand side of the page) and slather your skin with SPF protection….and wear a good pair of sunglasses!
With that in mind, I consulted two people who are experts: Marie Stipanick, Eyewear Designer for Coastal.com and an independent optometrist, Dr. Justin Asgarpour, who works in partnership with clearly.ca and Coastal.com, to learn what makes sunglasses, special and how to select great ones. Here’s what you need to know!
# There is a difference between a frame designed for eye glasses and one for sunglasses: Regular eye glass frames are designed for eyeglass lenses. Even if you transitions lenses in them (these are the lenses that get darker in the light, revert to clear indoors)the curvature of a normal eyeglass frame isn’t as deep as those designed specifically for sunglasses. The sunglasses frames wrap more around your face, and the deeper the curve, the better it will protect your eyes and your face from the sun’s rays. If you look at a regular eyeglass frame you can see that light can seep in from the sides, but with sunglass frames since they wrap more, there is less ability for light to get in.
# Transitions lenses and sunglasses have different uses: Transitions lenses will help protect your eyes from the sun all the time so they’re great, and they help reduce eye strain as well, but they are really designed for daily wear, when you’re going in and out and don’t want to keep changing your glasses. Sunglasses are meant and designed for one use: to be sunglasses worn when you are spending time in the bright sun, and when there is a lot of glare such as on a ski slope or on the water. Of course, if you are a celebrity who doesn’t want to be noticed, sunglasses have always been a not-always-foolproof way to camouflage yourself. Coastal.com sells ready-made sunglasses as well as those you customize with your prescription or lens preferences but make sure you are purchasing sunglasses from the “sunglassses” category and not the regular eyeglasses (there are many more of the regular eye glass frames). Some of the ready made sunglasses are “as-is” and you can’t swap out those lenses for prescription ones (e.g. rimless aviator frames). No worries as there are so many other to chooses from!
# Dark shades in fun colors look cool but it isn’t the color or intensity of the lens that protects your eyes. The tint of the lens is simply preference and comfort. The protection comes form the UVA/UVB FILTERS applied to the lenses that block out the UVA/UVB rays. You could have a clear lens that still blocks 100% of the rays., In fact, if you choose a dark tinted lens without the UVA?UVB filter applied to it, your pupils have to dialate more to see, so more light is actually entering your eyes without filtering out the sun’s damaging rays so you’re actually harming your eyes even more than not wearing sunglasses at all! Lens colors do have specific uses: Yellow/amber lenses may look cool, but did you know they are really good for increasing contrast for that’s why sports players like to wear them? Brown lenses feel comfortable to the eyes. Dark grey reduces a lot of the light coming into the eye, do they’re a good choice if you are sensitive to bright light. Green lenses do a good job in blocking out blue light, which is harmful to the retina.
# Not all sunglasses are equal. Invest in good quality frames and lenses from a quality retailer like Clearly.CA or Coastal.com that will certify their lenses are having 100% UVA/UVB filters. This is vitally important! If you buy “drugstore” sunglasses look for a sticker that says the lenses filter out UVA/UVB . If the lens says it is “polarized” it will block out UVA/UVB rays. All Coastal.com’s prescription lenses are polarized, They reduce glare from the sun, reduce eye strain from the brightness, and help you see better when you are driving. If broad spectrum UVA/UVB protection isn’t present on the lens, the glasses might look cool but they won’t protect your eyes.
# When selecting your sunglasses frames, make sure they fit properly. Sunglasses should be slightly larger than your usual eyeglass sized frame to protect your eyes and face. I initially made the mistake of picking out eyeglass frames–wrong, wrong wrong! To block out the sun it makes sense to go up to a larger size and deeper base curve (see #1) If your face is long and thin like mine and you tend to wear small glasses, picking the right sunglasses is tricky, but add a range of an extra 5 or 6 mm in the lens measurement and of course, pick something you think you’ll love. As eyeglass designer Marie advised me when I struggled to find something flattering: “know what works for your face shape.” With a longer narrower face the most important thing is not to pick something too wide and too narrow in lens depth. Some people can really get away with very large glasses but others just look a bit silly. If your face is thin and long, try a more square shape to balance that length. ” It is all about balance,” cautioned Marie. So perhaps if you have a round face, try a more angular frame. If you have a square, angular jar, pick something with more curves. *check out the glasses by type, size, theme on coastal.com
# For Prescription glasses, you must have a current prescription from your doctor: If you haven’t had your eyes checked for a while, you should, anyway, but don’t buy prescription sunglasses or eye glasses based on something you’ve worn for years. An outdated prescription won’t help you see well and you’ll strain your eyes, and if the measurements for your face are incorrect, you won’t see out of the lenses properly. On coastal.com you will need to have a prescription verified by a doctor for contact lenses, but along with proper fit for eye glasses and sun glasses, you need to know the exact measurements your doctor has put on the prescription form.
How To Choose Your Sunglasses: After much discussion and with a lot of assistance and patience from Marie Stipanick, I selected the Kam Dillon 302S Havana sunglasses frame (currently $88.00 for the frames on Coastal.com). The Kam Dhillon series like the Derek Cardigan Garnet eyeglass frames I chose when I initially reviewed Coastal.com and their online ordering process, are designed in-house exclusive to Coastal web sites. They’re made of high quality premium materials such as Italian Acetates, with German hinges,
The Kam Dhillon Havana is available in three colors, I selected traditional tortoise with green lenses because (I admit this) they reminded me a little bit of my mom’s glasses in the photo at the top of this feature. The frames also come in blue and black, and you can choose grey or brown lenses as well as green. *Designer Marie suggests complimenting your frames with similar tones in the lens, so for example, if you pick a warm, tortoise frame, grey lenses would kind of clash. Since I require prescription lenses I opted for the 1.67 Ultra Thin Progressive Lens in solid green grey polarized These 1.67 Index digital progressive lens up to 43% thinner than standard lenses. *prescription lenses are polarized and you can add the coating. This is where glasses get pricey (for some of us). Good prescription transitions lenses like these can cost a lot of money. On coastal.com they were reasonable but they could add a couple of hundred dollars onto your bill.
Below are three views of the sunglasses frames I chose, with all the important product information, and you would see this also on the Coastal.com web site. My usual frame size is normally around 48 and on the Kam Dhillon Havana frame I was going up to a 52, and that is much larger than anything I’d ever wear for normal glasses. Bridge width can really throw glasses off, but Marie explained that a plastic frame has a different type of bridge so size becomes more important, but if you got a metal frame with adjustable nose pads, for example, the bridge width wouldn’t matter as much.
This feature is about how to choose sunglasses, but buying glasses of any type online can be so much more cost-effective and it’s easy. CLICK HERE to read the Advice Sisters’ feature about purchasing glasses online from Coastal.com
The Really Serious Reasons Why You Need to Protect Your Eyes from the Sun’s Damaging Rays: According to Optometrist Dr. Justin Asgarpour, there are serious consequences to not protecting your eyes from UVA/UVB rays besides crows feet and headaches. He rattled off a bunch of things that can happen if you don’t protect your eyes, including the growth of cataracts that cause lower vision to potential blindness. UV damage effects the maccula and macular degeneration is the #1 cause of blindness inf North America. The sun can effect your eyeball and eyelid tissue. You can get eye burn or snow blindness. That’s just for starters!
Clearly.ca (in Canada) and Coastal.com are trying to offer a great value product to customers at are good price. They offer a huge array of Eyeglasses and Sunglasses online with various “models” so you can see how those frames might look on you. Shipping is FREE for all orders with no minimum or coupon code required. Most importantly, don’t be afraid to buy online. If you’re not completely happy with your item, return it to Coastal within 365 day of purchase (in its original condition). See Return Policy.