Most of us don’t make it through a decade of adulthood without the need for safety glasses, but if you don’t wear them daily, you probably aren’t familiar with the myriad of customizable options available.
Unlike the disposable pairs you inherited from your dad’s tool bench, safety glasses today have upgraded protective features that can keep your eyes safe from more than just sawdust or rocks flying from your lawnmower.
The eye safety superheroes at Stoggles know safety glasses like the back of their eyelids. We’ll give you all the details about all the different options available for safety glasses so you can decide which kind is best for your needs. First, let’s talk about why you need them in the first place.
Do I Really Need Safety Glasses?
Yes. Whether you’re a coal miner or a stay-at-home mom, there is always a need to protect your eyes. Job-related eye injuries occur at a rate of 2000 per day, with one-third resulting in emergency room visits and 100 injuries resulting in missed work.
It might surprise you, however, that over half of all eye injuries sustained in the United States happen at home. Cleaning, housework, home improvement, and yard work all pose risks to your vision.
Lastly, your eyes are at risk when you’re at play. More than 600,000 eye injuries are sustained each year in sports-related events, including events at home like throwing a baseball with your kids.
What Could Happen?
We get it, and we’ve said it too. But “What could happen” can quickly become famous (regrettable) last words if you don’t protect your eyes and end up with an injury that costs you your vision.
The reality is that our vision doesn’t heal itself once it’s gone. Retinal cells are precious and limited. Unlike other cells in our body, they don’t regenerate. This means if they’re damaged due to a spill, splash, strike, or burn, there may be no chance of ever recovering your vision.
According to the experts, 90% of all eye injuries (in the entire world) are preventable simply by wearing protective safety glasses.
When Do You Need Them?
More often than you think. From your job to your at-home activities to your favorite pastimes, there’s really never a reason not to be protecting your eyes. Stoggles make it easy by providing you with protection that’s also conveniently stylish, so you’ll actually wear them.
Let’s cover what’s available to protect your eyes and how you can get the most protection from your safety glasses no matter what you’ve got on the docket for your day.
Features of Safety Glasses
Growing up watching Tim the Toolman Taylor reminds us of the bulky safety specs that were once the ultimate in eye protection. Although we know that we need eye protection, who wants to wear them?
In addition to being more streamlined and sleek, safety glasses today offer even more protective features than Tim’s Home Improvement specs did.
1. Blue Light Blockers
If you’re wondering what blue light is, we’ve got you covered. Blue light is a part of the visible light spectrum that is closely related to UV light. It has short wavelengths and high energy. It’s emitted from sources like the sun and some fluorescent lights, but also from sources like computers, tablets, LED televisions, and smartphones.
Blue light causes eye strain, fatigue, and can even result in headaches and temporary blurry vision. Working in front of a computer screen all day places you at a higher risk of developing symptoms of blue light exposure.
While we don’t yet know the long-term effects of blue light exposure, researchers are continuing to study whether or not it could damage your retina and macula.
Blue light-blocking safety glasses protect you from blue light emitted from these sources by filtering out the light or reflecting it off the surface of the glasses. Blue light-blocking glasses derive their power from a powder injected along with the plastic during the molding process to make the lenses.
Essential for: Anyone who is exposed to blue light (hint: that’s you). Everyone is exposed to blue light, but with the upturn in digital everything, protecting your eyes from blue light exposure has never been more important. Your risk of blue light exposure increases with the frequency and duration of your device usage.
Blue light-blocking safety glasses protect your eyes so you can work without worrying about the effects your devices might be having on your vision.
2. UV Blockers
UV protection from safety glasses isn’t a new technology, but having it without the addition of a shaded lens is.
Ultraviolet light is damaging to your eyes and can create both temporary and long-term vision issues.
UV protection safety glasses protect you from exposure to the ultraviolet rays of the sun. If you work outdoors or play outdoors, your glasses need UV protection.
UV protection keeps your eyes safe, even if you aren’t in sunlight. Welding arc, medical lab equipment, and some dental equipment are all sources of UV light that require eye protection without shade.
When it came to designing Stoggles, there was only one lens material worthy: polycarbonate. Polycarbonate is naturally UV-blocking. Polycarbonate provides crystal clear lenses, ensuring you’re protected, but you can also see in low light conditions.
Essential for: Everyone exposed to UV light. If you work indoors and are exposed to UV light, clear safety glasses keep you laser-focused while protecting your eyes. Outdoors, a pair of tinted safety glasses can provide both shade and protection from UV-related eye issues like snow blindness (photokeratitis).
Your regular sunglasses need not apply. The UV protection offered by safety glasses allows you to protect your eyes both indoors and out.
3. Impact Resistance
Most safety glasses offer some impact protection, but to ensure you have the ultimate protection, look for the ANSI Z87.1-2020 certification.
This certification ensures your safety glasses have undergone two specific tests to keep your eyes safe from impact:
- High mass impact. During this test, a sharp, torpedo-shaped weight is dropped onto the lenses of the safety glasses to ensure they do not crack or break.
- High-velocity impact. For this test, a ball bearing is launched at the safety glasses at a high speed.
To pass these tests and earn the ANSI seal, the glasses cannot break or shatter.
- Impact-resistant safety glasses protect you from strikes, drops, and falls from material and heavy objects.
- Essential for: Impact resistance is important for numerous jobs like construction, automotive work, welding, and mining, and for tasks like yard work, sports, and other hobbies.
Not all safety glasses that say they are impact-resistant bear the ANSI Z87.1-2020 seal. You should be able to see the ANSI approval on the glasses frame or lens.
4. Side and Top Shields
You might be tempted to think you can just simply wear your regular eyeglasses or sunglasses to protect your eyes, but that’s not a good idea. Safety glasses keep your eyes safe in two places where regular eyeglasses and sunglasses leave your eyes vulnerable.
Side and top shields stop dangers from hitting your eyes from the gap at the top of the lens near your eyebrow and the open area on each side of your temple.
- Side and top shields protect you from particles, objects, splashes, splatters, and spills that would easily transfer into your eye area if you were wearing normal glasses.
- Essential for: Side and top shields are essential for healthcare workers, construction and manufacturing, yard work, and even household cleaning. Chemical splashes are not nearly as fun as the splash zone at a water park.
You might think the addition of side and top shields significantly impacts the stylistic appeal of your safety glasses, and you’d be right. That’s why we streamlined our Stoggles to keep them impeccably tasteful and ultimately protective.
Safety glasses that fog are more than annoying; they’re unsafe. When you have to remove your safety glasses to wipe them down, you expose your eyes to unsafe environments and allow the potential for eye injury.
Additionally, removing your glasses to wipe them takes you off task, which can lead to mistakes, missed time in the game, or an even worse injury.
- Anti-fog glasses work by decreasing the surface tension of the water droplets that collect on your lenses.
- Essential for: Everyone. Seriously. No one doesn’t benefit from the inclusion of anti-fog coating on glasses. And unlike anti-fog wipes, which only offer a temporary solution to a permanent problem, anti-fog coating will give you years of protection without the need to ever remove your glasses and wipe them.
Anti-fog lenses aren’t standard on many brands of safety glasses, but they are on all Stoggles. We spent nine months prepping our secret dip formula that’s longer-lasting and more even than the traditional spray anti-fog coating. Anti-fog needed a glow-up, and we made it happen.
We know the need to keep your glasses firmly on your face, which is why you’ll never have to remove Stoggles to wipe off the fog.
5 Types of Safety Glasses
Now that we’ve reviewed the essential features of protective eyewear, it’s time to start shopping for the perfect pair. Personal protective equipment (PPE) has evolved, and you’ve got plenty of options.
1. Face Shields
Everyone knows someone who was a die-hard face shield enthusiast during the pandemic. These shields work by strapping to the face with an elastic band and usually have a soft piece of material that rests on the forehead, pushing the shield outward and away from the face.
Unfortunately, most of these shields don’t offer the level of protection you need for even basic activities like cleaning, gardening, or mowing the lawn. They’re usually made of flimsy material that isn’t impact resistant, and they don’t have side shields to protect you from a strike or splash.
Industrial-grade face shields (like the kind a welder might use) are different. However, the average person doesn’t need a welding helmet unless they’re welding, soldering, or brazing molten metal.
2. Prescription Safety Glasses
There’s nothing worse than attempting to smoosh your corrective lenses under a pair of bulky, uncomfortable safety glasses, which is why a lot of people who wear prescription lenses just depend on their regular eyeglasses for protection and skip safety eyewear altogether.
This is a big mistake. Your regular specs aren’t equipped for the task, nor are they likely scratch-resistant. One strike or scrape and your glass lenses could shatter, sending shards of glass into your eye.
When you need protection from eye hazards and corrective lenses, trust the team at Stoggles. Just upload your script to your website, and we’ll take care of the rest. You’ll get serious protection and serious style, all while you retain the vision corrective lenses you rely on to see clearly. It’s a win/win (win).
Some jobs require types of eye protection that form a complete seal around the eye area. OSHA works with the American National Standards Institute (aka ANSI) to determine the safety standards necessary for protection against numerous types of workplace hazards.
If your employer has made you aware that proper eye protection means goggles, you’re probably in a job that involves airborne pathogens or other sources that can only be stopped by the suction effect of goggles. Yeah, it might not be comfortable, but whatever OSHA says goes!
4. Clip-Ons for Full Face Respirators
Some potential hazards can’t be seen, but they still exist. Vapors can impact your eye health as well as your lung health, which is why respirator-safety eyewear combinations exist.
These protection devices have safety glasses attached to a respirator and offer protection to the eyes, nose, and mouth.
5. Wraparound Safety Glasses
A popular type of protective eyewear uses wraparound lenses in lieu of side shields. These can be fine choices for some, but if you need prescription lenses, there’s a chance the wraparound feature could cause a warped or funhouse mirror effect.
Check with the manufacturer beforehand and read the online reviews to see if wearers of these types of glasses have experienced issues with the wraparound frames.
Stoggles: All-in-One Protection (That Looks Good, Too)
Let’s be honest: we all care about our appearance. No one wants to go to work or even do yard work with bulky, uncomfortable safety glasses. Nine times out of ten, you’ll opt to forgo the safety glasses and put your eyes at risk.
Stoggles exist to bring style and function together. All Stoggles glasses feature:
- Anti-fog coating
- Blue light-blocking lenses
- ANSI Z87.1-2020 certification
- Side and top shields
- UV-blocking lenses
- Superior style and comfort
Our glasses are so comfortable that you’ll probably find yourself reaching for them more than any other pair you own. With three different lens shapes, three different frame sizes, and numerous color options, it’s easy to fully customize your glasses just the way you want them.
Easy on the Eyes
You aren’t limited to the same safety specs your parents wore, which makes it all the easier to protect your eyes from injury. Keep your eyes safe and your style on point. Stoggles give you the protection you need and the looks you love.