You’re a hard worker, but when 5:00 p.m. Friday rolls around, you’re clocking out from work and clocking in on playtime. Or maybe that’s how you commute to work. Or perhaps you are a motorcycle stunt person and drive a bike for work (if so, that’s so cool, and can we be friends?).
For the motorcycle enthusiast, you know your weekend will consist of riding, collecting wind in your hair, and making memories with your friends.
If you follow the AT-GAT rule (all the gear, all the time), you know the importance of wearing safety gear no matter how brief the ride. This rule applies to eyewear, too, and if you need prescription glasses that are wind and debris-proof to go with your leathers this weekend, we’ve got you covered (quite literally).
At Stoggles, we develop safety eyewear that fits for work and play, and we offer it with prescriptions so that everyone has an equal opportunity to keep their eyes safe and stylish. Let’s talk about why eye protection is essential for riders and bikers (yep, we know there is a difference) and how to get the protection your eyes need before your next excursion.
What’s the Danger?
What could possibly be dangerous about riding lens-free on the open highway with nothing between your eyes and the outside world but your lashes? Practically everything. When traveling at speeds over 70 miles per hour, even the tiniest pebbles and bugs become bullets that can impact your eyes and damage your vision.
In addition, rain and wind can strike your eyes, causing them to become dry or cause excessive tearing that makes it difficult for you to see.
While no rider ever plans to have an accident, they do happen, and they happen more frequently than in cars. As such, it’s important to be prepared, and keeping your eyes safe is arguably just as important (if not more) than the rest of your body.
Eye Safety Matters: Here’s Why
Your eyes work like complex cameras, collecting light, focusing it through the pupil and iris, and sending the light information to the back of the organ where vision actually happens. The retina is a structure located in the back of your eye that contains highly specialized cells.
Retinal cells have the capability of changing light into electrical signals, which it then sends to the brain via the optic nerve. The brain interprets these signals into our vision.
These cells, however, don’t work like cells in other parts of your body. Unlike skin cells which are constantly renewing, retinal cells are a one-and-done deal. Once they’re damaged or destroyed, they don’t regenerate. This means when they are lost, a portion of your vision is lost with them.
If you lay your bike down and get road rash, your skin will (eventually) heal. Take a pebble to the eye while riding, however, and you could quite literally lose your eyesight.
Gearing Up: Getting the Best Prescription Motorcycle Glasses
You may wear thick, round frames during the work week, but after hours, you’re looking for something a little more rugged and a lot more protective. Here, we give you the specs to look for when shopping for the best motorcycle glasses available with a prescription.
Protecting your eyes from debris is crucial to keeping them safe, and you can’t keep them safe from flying debris unless they have a serious level of impact resistance. While you don’t need ballistic-rated glasses (which, by the way, are military-specific), you do need ANSI Z87.1 certified specs.
The American National Standards Institute creates safety guidelines and specifications that are used across multiple industries to ensure a level of protection that is consistent and effective.
Eyewear that meets the ANSI standard has undergone two tests:
- High mass impact testing. This test involves ensuring the eyewear can withstand impact from a weighted ball bearing being dropped directly onto the lens.
- High-velocity impact testing. During this test, a steel ball bearing is fired at high speed directly at the lens.
To pass the test, eyewear can’t break or shatter. If it doesn’t break, you can trust it to protect your eyes while you’re on the road.
Obviously, you need sun protection when you’re riding, but if you’ve been tempted to take your sunglasses off on a cloudy day, you’re risking your eyes to UV damage.
UV rays (both UVA and UVB rays) can be extremely damaging to your eyes. UV light can reach the back of the eye, affecting your retina and potentially damaging the macula. The macula is the part of your eye responsible for fine, detailed vision.
Even on cloudier days, road glare can make it hard for you to see and can give you a nice case of photokeratitis, the same kind of eye condition snowboarders and surfers get by spending time on a reflective surface.
This eye condition can leave you with pain, burning, and a feeling like there is sand or grit in your eye, which can make it impossible for you to continue your ride. UV protection is important regardless of whether or not you are in direct sunlight. For that, you need the protection offered by Stoggles.
All Stoggles are made with polycarbonate material, which is naturally UV blocking, which means you get UV protection without a super dark tint.
If it’s happened once, it’s happened a thousand times. You head out for a ride on a steamy day and encounter your glasses fogging before you even hit 20 miles per hour. You’re sidelined and left behind on the rally.
Fogging glasses can also happen if you’re behind another vehicle that is off-gassing high amounts of exhaust or if the climate suddenly changes mid-ride. This can place you at risk of having an accident, in addition to forcing you to pull over.
Instead, opt for prescription motorcycle glasses that are treated with anti-fog coating. These keep your eyes safe and your hand on the throttle. All Stoggles come standard with anti-fog treatment.
The lenses of our eyewear change the surface tension of water vapor, making it impossible for fogging to happen. Rather than spray our glasses with anti-fog treatment, we dip ours in — you wouldn’t settle for subpar paint on your bike; why would you want it on your specs?
Side and Top Shields
Regular glasses and sunglasses leave your eyes vulnerable in a few key places, like the tops of your eyes by the eyebrow, and the sides of your eyes, by the temples. Your buddies may prefer wraparound lenses to protect the sides, but there’s a two-part problem with wraparound style lenses.
- They don’t offer protection at the top of the lens. This area can still allow for debris, and wraparound lenses don’t guard against it.
- They can warp your prescription. The curved nature of these styles of lenses can create a funhouse mirror effect, especially if you have corrective lenses. We probably don’t need to explain how dangerous it is to ride your bike with a warped sense of reality.
A better solution is to grab a pair of protective glasses with side and top shields. These are attached to the arms and lenses of your glasses in a low-profile design. This offers protective coverage without interfering with your prescription.
Blue Light Blocking
What’s a ride without a few selfies along the way? Your smartphone helps keep track of your location and also makes it easy to create memories with photos, but it’s also emitting blue light.
Blue light, like ultraviolet light, comes from the sun. However, it also comes from numerous other sources like tablets, LED televisions and light bulbs, computer screens, and smartphones. Most of us are exposed to more blue light than UV light, but few of us are protecting our eyes against it.
While the verdict is still out on how much long-term damage blue light will do to your eyes, what we do know is that just like ultraviolet light, it has the ability to reach the retina directly. It also contributes to digital eye strain, leaving your eyes feeling weak, tired, and watery.
Blue light-blocking glasses work by filtering out harmful blue light and keeping your eyes safe. All Stoggles eyewear has blue light blocking technology injected into the lenses at the time of manufacturing.
If you’ve never had a pair of prescription safety glasses, you may have been wearing your regular eyeglasses under a helmet or with goggles. This is usually uncomfortable and a good recipe for fogging, two conditions that present a safety hazard while you’re riding.
Instead, bring your prescriptions directly to Stoggles, and we’ll hammer out the safety eyewear you need in-house, saving you time, money, and the headache and hassle of riding with two sets of lenses strapped to your face.
You’re no squid, so you know protective gear is a must-have, but if your protection stops with your eyes, you’re placing your vision at risk, as well as your ability to continue riding. Safety eyewear that isn’t comfortable or makes you look like a mad scientist is going to sit inside your saddlebag.
At Stoggles, we know the importance of safety, and we also appreciate impeccable style. That’s why you’ll find our safety eyewear is available in a variety of shapes, sizes, and colors, so you can get a customizable fit and look that’s as specific to you as the paint job on your beast.
Rev Up Your Eye Safety
Before you go full throttle, make sure your eyes are protected. If you wear prescription lenses, you’ve got to choose Stoggles for your motorcycle safety glasses. We offer a high level of protection in a streamlined design that you can feel confident wearing.
It’s the easiest way to protect your eyes, secure your style, and keep on riding. We’ll see you on the road.
Facts + Statistics: Motorcycle crashes | Insurance Information Institute
ANSI/ISEA Z87.1-2020: Current Standard for Safety Glasses|Blog.Ansi.org