Petunias. Begonias. Hydrangeas. In your garden, they look gorgeous, but to your eye health, they're vision-corrupting rapscallions looking for a fight. Think we’re being dramatic? We probably are, but only a little.
Gardening without protective safety glasses is a bad idea, and the sensational safety team at Stoggles is here to help you understand why. We’ll give you six reasons why you need to wear safety glasses while you’re planting peonies and casting weeds to the wayside. We’ll also tell you what features your protective eyewear needs to keep your eyes safe.
Six Reasons Why Glasses Are Essential for Gardening
Gardening may seem like a relaxing pastime, but rest assured, this ain’t your grandma’s bag. Planting, tending, and cultivating a garden requires tools, chemicals, and time outside that can present dangers to your eyes and even leave you with vision damage if your eyes aren’t protected.
In addition to regular eye exams and routine eye safety checks, safety eyewear is the solution for keeping your vision healthy. Here, we’ll give you the scoop on the dangers in the dirt and give you six reasons to break out your favorite protective eyewear (that’s Stoggles, of course) every time you till.
Seasonal and perennial allergies can affect your eyes just like they can your nose and throat. Red, itchy, watery eyes can be a symptom, but even more severe allergic responses like conjunctivitis can occur if allergies aren’t well controlled.
When you’re gardening, you’ll naturally be exposed to pollination in an up close and personal way, which can result in allergy flare-ups that affect the protective membrane of your eyes (the conjunctiva).
Safety eyewear protects your eyes from pollen and makes it easy to spend more time with your plant kids.
Fertilizers and Other Chemicals
Even if you’re an organic gardener, certain synthetic substances are used to maintain the health of your plants and prevent pests. These chemicals aren’t usually safe for your eyes and can present a risk to your eye health.
Anytime you plan to treat your garden for weeds, use fertilizer, or spray for pests, you should always wear protective eyewear. Getting even a small portion of these chemicals in your eyes can be painful, cause irritation, and even cause long-term vision impairment.
Dirt and Debris
Nature is made of dirt, and dirt won’t hurt … until it’s in your eyes, of course. Trapped inside your eye, dirt can cause irritation and tiny scrapes. Flushing with water can definitely help and may even provide a solution, but the real issue arises with a buildup of dust, dirt, and/or debris in your eye.
Dirt can accumulate and create a big problem, like a corneal abrasion that can impact your vision. Left unattended, it can even lead to ruptures of the membrane of the eye, which could decrease your vision or even blind you.
Protective eyewear acts like a windshield between you and your potting soil, keeping the dust and dirt around your plants, not your pupils. And when your lawnmower kicks up rocks, weed chunks, and a long-lost Lego, protective specs have you covered.
Maybe you consider yourself a novice arborist, saving the planet one paper oak planting at a time. Or maybe, during the holidays, you channel your inner Clark Griswold and seek out the largest sap-oozing pine to proudly display in your home.
While you’re handling the hardwood, make sure you’re protecting your eyes. Sap from certain trees can be toxic to your vision and lead to blindness. Even if it isn’t blinding, sap can cause eye infections and impair your vision to such a degree you’ll probably need a doctor and some prescription eye drops before you’re on the mend.
Sap can also make other plant parts stickier, which gives them more opportunity to stick to your hands and end up in your eyes when you casually rub them or simply move hair out of your line of sight.
Who doesn’t love a power tool? The vibration of pure, unbridled power in your palm gives you the sensation that you are the master of your domain, and you definitely are, at least in your garden.
Tools like edgers, trimmers, tillers, and even small hand tools can all present hazards to your eyes. Just like a lawnmower can throw a rock into your eye, these tools can strike other debris and yeet them into your line of vision.
We probably don’t need to go into detail about the dangers here: strikes, scrapes, and total vision loss can happen in the blink of an eye (no pun intended). The solution? Protective eyewear that takes the hit, so your eyes don’t have to.
Wearing protective clothing and sunscreen while you’re in the garden is a no-brainer, but you also need UV protective glasses to keep your eyes safe. Both UVA and UVB rays damage your vision and can lead to early-onset macular degeneration.
To protect your eyes, you need glasses that have UV-blocking lenses. Your sunglasses may have this protective coating, but keep in mind that the tint on your glasses doesn’t equate to better coverage.
To know for sure, your glasses should have a marking on the frames that indicate they are UV protecting.
Gardening Glasses for Groundskeeping Gods and Goddesses
If our alliteration doesn’t impress you, our eyewear will. At Stoggles, we offer a new category of vision protection that doesn’t suck the style out of your look or feel uncomfortable on your face.
No matter what kind of protective eyewear you choose, be sure they have the right specs.
The gold standard for impact resistance is the ANSI Z87.1-2020 certification. This means your eyewear has been tested to withstand impact at certain speeds and with certain weights. Rocks, debris, and stray tree limbs will go head to head with your safety eyewear, not your eyeballs.
Side and Top Shields
Your regular sunglasses are not the droids you are looking for. Seriously. They aren’t impact tested, and they leave your eyes vulnerable in places that safety eyewear won’t. Regular glasses leave massive gaps near your eyebrows and across each temple.
Side and top shields keep these areas protected without adding barely any weight — or disrupting your vision. Wraparound lenses may protect the temples, but they still leave the eyes vulnerable toward the top area if the glasses don’t fit correctly.
They can also most definitely interfere with prescription lenses and create a funhouse mirror effect, which might lead you to believe you’ve been playing with the poppies a little too long.
UV Blocking Lenses
UV protection is essential for your eyes, even when it’s a cloudy day. That’s why you’ll find crystal clear vision protection locked into every pair of Stoggles. Our eyewear is crafted from lightweight polycarbonate material, which is naturally UV protective, no tinting required.
What’s more, polycarbonate keeps our eyewear comfortable, allowing you to forget your even wearing them and focus on your work (think Myagi bonsai level concentration).
You can’t fool us; we know things get steamy in the garden. As your body starts naturally producing sweat as you work out (weeding is exhausting, y’all), your glasses fog up.
But why can your glasses fog, even on a fog-free day? Actually, it’s pretty simple. With the glasses’ coverage, the air has little chance of escaping. You need a top-notch anti-fog solution (hint: it’s two paragraphs down).
Foggy glasses result in frustration and create a safety issue. Removing your glasses to wipe them down removes protection from your eyes and takes up valuable time, and leaves you prone to risk or injury.
Instead of anti-fog drops or wipes, choose anti-fog lenses. Stoggles lenses are dipped in anti-fog solution when they’re manufactured, creating a long-lasting barrier between the orchids in your greenhouse and your eyesight.
Blue Light Blocking
Think your blue light blockers are for researching the most prized plantscapes on your computer? Think again. The largest source of blue light is the sun. However, our continued exposure to blue light through screens and tablets makes it more dangerous for our eyes.
Blue light-blocking lenses contain a specialized coating that effectively filters out blue light and protects your eyes both indoors (in front of LED televisions, computer screens, and smartphones) and outdoors in the sun.
If you wear corrective lenses, there’s no need to stuff them under a pair of uncomfortable, heavy safety goggles. Just let the team at Stoggles know you need prescription lenses. We’ll process your prescription in-house, saving you time, money, and the obvious frustration of wearing double glasses while you double down on your lawn maintenance.
Unlike big-box safety Rx glasses, where the prescription warps on the sides, making it impossible to see on the sides, Stoggles are shaped like traditional glasses. That way, there’s no warping — so you can see the hanging vines on your side lawn without needing to turn your entire body.
Gardening might never make it to the X Games, but the threat to your eyes is just as intense. Before you pull another weed or plant another savory herb, grab the only protective eyewear that feels as good as it protects.
Stoggles keep your eyes safe and your style in check, and they won’t ever make you uncomfortable. Because if your eyewear is uncomfortable, you aren’t going to wear it, and that would make protective eyewear fairly un-protective.
Eye Allergies | Causes, Symptoms & Treatment | ACAAI Public Website
The Adverse Effects of Air Pollution on the Eye: A Review | PMC
The Spectrum of Ocular Inflammation Caused by Euphorbia Plant Sap | Cornea | JAMA Ophthalmology