The idea of sunglasses is older than some people may realize, and the earliest models were found in 12th century China. Back then, sunglasses protected the wearer’s eyes from glare of the sun’s light, and they could help hide a person’s face during a court of law. By the 20th century, sunglasses as we know them fully appeared, mainly in the Air Force. And now, sunglasses nearly always have polarized lenses, and polarized lenses for sunglasses vary in protection and color based on preference and need. Even half frame sunglasses can be found, and these lenses for sunglasses can be repaired or replaced at a local eyewear shop. The best polarized lenses will have the highest UV protection rating, and these lenses for sunglasses can be used nearly anywhere. What is there to know about the origin of today’s polarized lenses for sunglasses and mirrored sunglasses?
Eye protection has existed for centuries, but sunglasses as we know them today first appeared in the 1930s. Back then, a man named Mr. Land worked with photography and lenses, and he realized that aviators had trouble seeing their instrument panels due to the strong glare of the sun high in the sky. So, Mr. Land was asked to create new lenses that could protect aviators’ eyes, and he used his experience with polarized photography to create polarized lenses. These lenses could block some of the UV light that struck them, and this became the model technology for sunglasses ever since. They were given to aviators in the American military free of charge, and they had their distinctive drooping frame so that pilots could look down at their instrument panels without exposing their eyes to any glare. Thus, “aviators” were developed, and they have expanded beyond the actual Air Force to the civilian market too, where they have proven popular for decades. Now, aviators not only protect the eyes but are often stylish.
It is easy to say that sunglasses in all shapes and forms are part of a huge industry, since nearly anyone may want to wear them. Anyone who can see will want eye protection from the sun, and sometimes, the legally blind use sunglasses to make that fact more discreet if they so choose. And of course, sometimes sunglasses are still used for an age-old purpose: hiding the wearer’s identity, since they cover the eyes and the eyebrows.
The United States produces a dazzling variety and quantity of consumer good and accessories today, and this certainly includes sunglasses of all sorts. A number of brands, including Plano, work hard to produce all these sunglasses for their clients. Back in 2012, for a fairly recent example, Plano in particular in the United States produced 95.9 million units of sunglasses. Most often, those sunglasses were sold in shops in person, as only 4.7 million of them were bought online through e-commerce. How might these sunglasses work? Today, general-purpose cosmetic sunglasses must block at least 70% of UVB, and standard general purpose shades must block 95% of UVB that strikes them. Finally, there are special purpose sunglasses which have the most strict requirements. These powerful sunglasses can block fully 99% of UVB light that strikes the lenses.
Sunglasses vary in their materials and price, and there’s something for everyone out there. Some sunglasses are cheap, non-prescription models with colorful plastic frames, and can be found at convenience or general stores across the United States for purchase. Their UV-blocking power may be limited, but for some applications, that’s good enough. Meanwhile, some customers may want more permanent sunglasses, and may visit an eyewear shop to have prescription sunglasses made. Such glasses will be designed according to the customer’s interests, such as the shape of the frames, the material, and the color of the lenses. Damaged glasses can be brought in for repair if need be.
Where are sunglasses worn? Aside from poker tables, sunglasses are common during outdoor events ranging from outdoor concerts during the day to watching a horse race all the way to sports on snow. “Snow blindness” is when sunlight reflects off of snow and into a person’s eyes, causing damage. Athletes who are going skiing or snowboarding often make use of powerful, high-end sunglasses to protect themselves from that.