Nonprescription sunglasses are popular among people of all ages. The choices of lenses, frames, and designs are virtually infinite. People with refractive error have the option of incorporating their prescription into regular and designer sunglasses, but most over-the-counter sunglasses are sold without a prescription.

What are nonprescription sunglasses?

Nonprescription sunglasses are designed to protect the eyes from sunlight. The lenses are typically colored, polarized, or darkened; the style and frame choice can be customized depending on when, where, and how they are being used. They can be made from plastic, basic metals, or lightweight titanium, aluminum, or stainless steel materials.

What are prescription sunglasses?

Prescription sunglasses are sunglasses that have a corrective prescription built into the lenses. They provide protection from the sun and glare and help people see clearly outdoors. Sunglasses can accommodate virtually any type of lens prescription, including progressive prescriptions for people with presbyopia. They come in an array of styles and materials; the choices of frames are the same as with non-prescription sunglasses.

One of the most popular types of prescription sunglasses are photocromic glasses, or transition lenses. These clear glasses are designed to gradually darken when exposed to light and lose their tint indoors.

Why are sunglasses used?

Sunglasses help to improve visual clarity and protect eyes from glare and damage.

Healthcare professionals are constantly warning of the dangers of exposing the eyes to direct sunlight. Sunglasses offer protection against exposure to UV light outdoors, reducing the risk of long-term vision problems like:

  • Cataracts 
  • Photokeratitis 
  • Forms of eye cancer

Benefits of prescription sunglasses

Eyewear has come a long way since the days of clip-on sunglass lenses. Prescription sunglasses are now widely available in the latest styles, materials, and colors. People with vision problems no longer have to sacrifice their appearance to protect their eyes from the sun.

Prescription sunglasses have the following benefits:

  • UV protection 
  • Better visibility when driving 
  • Clear vision outdoors 
  • Glare reduction 
  • Less squinting and eyestrain 
  • Protection from the elements

To have your prescription added to sunglasses, schedule an appointment with your optometrist today.

Sun Clips

It can be annoying having to carry around regular prescription eyeglasses along with sunglasses. The solution for many people who want to protect their eyes from the sun is to invest in a pair of sun clips. Clip-on sunglasses are ideal for people who want their regular eyeglasses to also function as sunglasses. They protect eyes from the sun and are easy to use and store.

How do sun clips work?

Sun clips are tinted sunglass frames without temples featuring cushioned tabs that are designed to clip onto the front of eyeglasses. Some sun clips actually utilize magnets to hold the frames to eyeglasses rather than traditional clips. Both types of sun clips are easy to use; they simply clip onto the sides of regular eyeglasses and can be lifted off and stored when no longer needed.

Benefits of sun clips

Here are just a few of the benefits of sun clips: 

  • They are an affordable alternative to prescription sunglasses. 
  • They clip on and off easily, usually with one hand. 
  • They come in a variety of tints. 
  • They protect against harmful UV rays.
  • Problems associated with sun clips

Sun clips are valued for their convenience and affordability, but there are some sacrifices that come with choosing clip on sunglasses over prescription sunglasses. Many people consider sun clips an outdated style. Since the size of the clips has to match up with the shape of the regular eyeglasses they are being clipped on, there is little flexibility when it comes to choosing styles and shapes.

It is also important to keep in mind that sun clips add more weight to the nose and face. People who are used to lightweight eyewear may have a hard time adjusting to the weight of sun clip lenses.