You’re just planning to mow the lawn, and the thought of donning hearing protection and safety goggles makes you wonder if jean shorts and white New Balances are next. Even if you’re a dad, you’re still every bit as cool as you were in your 20’s, so you skip the safety protection and end up in the ER with a rogue twig stuck in your eye.
We get it. Personal protective equipment isn’t exactly known for its runway-esque appearance. Most of us would rather take a “safety third” mentality than wear safety goggles, even when we know we need them.
The trouble is, eye injuries are really common. So common that there are more than 2.5 million eye injuries every year in the U.S. alone. The eyes can heal from some injuries, but the process is slow, and sometimes, vision can be lost completely.
It kind of makes those safety goggles and white sneakers a little more appealing.
Let’s talk about eye protection, what it is, and why it’s very important. We’ll also give you some options for protective eyewear that won’t compromise your killer style.
What Is Eye Protection?
Protective eyewear refers to specialized glasses or goggles that are worn to protect your eyes from injury when your work conditions are hazardous.
Protective eyewear is necessary for some people on the job, while some may only need protective eyewear when they’re tackling home improvement projects or other home and recreation activities.
If you’re thinking you can bypass the safety glasses and just wear your favorite pair of shades, you’re wrong. Neither regular eyeglasses nor sunglasses are designed with the same safety features as safety glasses and goggles. They can’t withstand impact or protect your eyes completely.
There are numerous activities that merit the use of eye protection.
- Lawn and yard work
- Home improvement (anything that requires grinding, sawing, sanding, or drilling)
- Cleaning with chemicals that create fumes
- Auto repair
- Welding projects
- Work-related requirements
- Electrical work
- Basic home maintenance
This isn’t an exhaustive list, but it should help you realize that there are a lot more activities that involve risk to your eyes than just working in a laboratory.
What Type of Eye Protection Do You Need?
You’ve got options in terms of eye protection. Your specific project may require the use of safety goggles which give you more protection or allow for safety glasses. Let’s compare them both.
Safety goggles are designed to give your eyes 360-degree protection without any gaps. Normally, safety goggles attach by the use of an adjustable head strap, much like goggles you’d wear to swim.
Safety goggles aren’t usually available with prescription lenses. Because of their size, it’s possible you can wear them over your regular glasses, although they might not be extremely comfortable.
Many professions require the use of safety goggles, especially if you work with hazardous chemicals and/or airborne illness. They’re also a good idea for some home improvement projects.
For most projects, safety glasses are an acceptable form of eye protection. Safety glasses include specialized frames, lenses, and side + top shields that protect your eyes from flying debris and immediate contact with chemicals and fumes.
If you wear prescription glasses, you already know what a pain it is to strap PPE specs over those prescription frames. Eliminate this frustration with safety glasses. Safety glasses represent the best of 2-in-1 eyewear and are OSHA-approved. It’s time to banish those uncomfortable goggles to the back of your closet.
What Are ANSI Standards?
The ANSI standards were developed to ensure that all safety glasses and protective eyewear conforms to the same standards. When you’re shopping for protective eyewear, it’s important to always look for an ANSI certification.
Here’s what ANSI certification means for your protective specs:
- Frames are tested to withstand impact from a ¼” steel ball traveling 150 feet per second. The frames should be able to keep the lenses intact under this amount of impact. The lenses of safety glasses and goggles must also be able to withstand this same type of impact. This is referred to as the high-velocity impact test.
- A secondary “drop ball” test is performed on the lenses of safety glasses and goggles. In this testing scenario, a one-inch ball is dropped from a height of fifty feet onto the lenses. The lenses must not scratch, break, or crack to pass the test. This is the basic impact test.
- Lenses and frames of safety glasses and goggles are tested separately so that the durability of one is not reliant on the other.
- Safety lenses may be prescription, but the prescription must conform to thickness requirements as outlined by ANSI.
- Safety frames must also pass a flammability test that involves exposure to flame and corrosive chemicals.
Differences in Safety Ratings
You can determine the difference in safety ratings of your safety glasses by learning the variations in the markings on the lenses or frames. Most of the time, the lenses will bear the marking to let you know they’ve been tested and approved.
- Lens tinting: If you see a “V” or “S” on your lenses, it means they have a protective tint. The manufacturer will include more information about the specifics of the tint and what conditions in which the glasses can be used.
- Frame markings: A marking of “Z87.1” on the frames of your safety glasses or goggles indicates your frames have passed the ANSI impact test. This marking is critical to look out for. You need your glasses to be as tough as you are and handle anything life throws at you.
Safety Glasses in Style: Stoggles
Meet your new best friends in safety. Stoggles wear like your favorite glasses but give you all the protection you need because you should never have to compromise safety or style. Not only do they offer style and protection, but every pair of Stoggles comes with an anti-fog coating and blue light protective technology.
Stoggles safety glasses are ANSI Z87.1 impact tested and certified, so you can be confident that hitting on a rock on your mower won’t injure your eyes.
You won’t have to worry about wearing uncomfortable protective gear over your regular glasses with a pair of Stoggles. Our lenses are available in prescription. We handle your prescriptions in-house, too, saving you time and money.
Stoggles are also blue-light protective, so you keep your eyes safe in front of your favorite devices. Our safety glasses are truly designed so that you can wear them no matter what your day involves and look good while you’re at it.
Eye Protection on Trend
The verdict is in; eye protection is on trend with Stoggles. Protecting your eyes is incredibly important, no matter how minimal you feel your task may be. To ensure the best possible protection for your eyes, look for the ANSI certification for both your safety glasses’ frames and lenses.
Trust us; you’ll look more stylish sporting safety glasses instead of an eye patch; the pirate look is so last year.