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In our modern world, people spend more time than ever in front of screens. In fact, nearly one-third of adults report being online almost constantly throughout the day. Despite its many advantages, this explosion in digital gadgets also comes with a price. Your computer screen, tablet, and smartphone all emit high-energy blue light similar to the sun. When you use these digital devices into the late hours of the evening, the blue light exposure can disrupt your sleep-wake cycle.
To combat the effects of screen time before bed, more and more companies are offering glasses with special lenses that can block blue light from reaching your eyes. These blue light blocking glasses offer a safe and drug-free way to make sure late-night screen time and artificial lighting don’t affect your sleep.
Blue light blocking glasses are a fairly new type of technology, and the industry lacks a clear set of regulations to guide shoppers. Whether you’re a gamer or just need to get some work done on your computer before bed, we’ll help you sift through the marketing claims to find the best pair of blue light blocking glasses for your needs.
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The Ocushield Anti Blue Light Glasses are comfortable and lightweight yet highly effective at protecting your eyes. The lenses are designed to block up to 99% of UV rays and blue light emissions with wavelengths that fall between 300 and 400 nanometers (nm), as well as 40% of emissions in the range of 400 to 470 nm. This makes them well suited to late-night workers and other people who need to use electronic devices before bed.
Choose from two standard frame styles with three available colors apiece. You can also select a clip-on option to use with prescription lenses or sunglasses. All glasses are treated to resist glare, fog, and smudging, allowing for near-perfect clarity at all times. The unisex design is geared toward men and women.
With each purchase, U.K.-based Ocushield will donate one pound to the Royal National Institute of Blind People’s sight loss charity. Ground delivery is free for all orders of $63 or £45 and higher, though U.S. customers qualify for low flat-rate shipping if they don’t reach this pricing threshold. Each order includes a 100-night trial period.
Best for Customized Prescription
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Most blue light blocking glasses are not customized and can accommodate anyone, but people who regularly wear prescription glasses may need lenses that are specifically tailored to them. The Spektrum PROSPEK-50 glasses don’t require a prescription, but the lenses can be customized based on certain factors.
Prior to placing an order, customers input prescription data based on sphere, which identifies near- or farsightedness, and cylinder and axis, which both indicate the lens settings needed to correct astigmatism. The glasses can also be customized for pupil distance, or how far apart the eyes are. Those who don’t know these settings should consult their eye doctor.
Seven different designs are available for the PROSPEK-50, ranging from minimalist frames to more colorful styles. All options are lightweight and fairly durable. The lenses are engineered with eight layers for optimal protection against UV rays and blue light.
Customers in the U.S. and Canada receive low flat-rate shipping with their prescription-based order. Although prescription glasses are not eligible for Spektrum’s 90-day return period, each purchase is backed by a 1-year warranty.
Best for Kids
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Adults aren’t the only people who can benefit from blue light blocking glasses. The same is true for children, especially those who spend their evenings playing video games, watching television, or otherwise engaging with electronic devices. The Eyekeeper Kids Blue Light Filter Glasses are a low-cost option that are also highly effective. While the glasses filter about 24% of blue light emissions with wavelengths of 500 nm, they’ll block 93% to 99% of emissions in the range of 400 to 420 nm.
The frames are available in eight different colors. All options are lightweight with a plastic composition and a one-size-fits-all design. Unlike many competing models, the lenses of these glasses do not distort color to a significant degree. Eyekeeper also offers glasses with yellow, orange, and amber tints.
An approachable price-point makes these glasses a good investment for parents on a budget. All pairs are backed by a lifetime warranty, and buyers can return them within 30 days of the delivery date in exchange for a full product refund. Eyekeeper provides delivery worldwide, though shipping rates vary by destination.
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If you’re in the market for blue light blocking glasses but aren’t sure which design best suits you, Peepers offers an unparalleled selection of frame styles. The current lineup features 100 individual models that vary in terms of weight, dimensions, shape, and color. Choose from minimalist looks, throwback styles, and more colorful options. All pairs are designed to filter blue light and block up to 99.9% of UV rays.
Buyers can customize their order based on lens strength. Nine settings are available ranging from 1.00 to 3.00, and the Peepers website features a downloadable vision chart to determine which strength level is most suitable. Customers who don’t normally wear prescription glasses can also opt for “no correction” lenses. The tint is minimal, so you shouldn’t experience significant color distortion while you’re wearing the glasses.
Thanks to an affordable sticker price and low flat-rate shipping, these glasses are a great option for budget-minded shoppers. Returns are accepted within 90 days of receipt, and those who aren’t satisfied will receive a full product refund minus a small shipping label fee.
Best for Reading
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The Readerest Blue Light Blocking Reading Glasses come in a wide range of magnification strengths, from 0 to 3.75. If you enjoy reading on your tablet before bed but also need a little help with your vision, then these glasses may be the right choice for you.
Designed to block up to 40% of high-energy blue light and provide protection against UV rays, these lenses are virtually clear, making for easier reading in the evening. Each pair of Readerest Blue Light Blocking Reading Glasses features an anti-reflective coating on the inside of the lenses to reduce glare, as well as scratch-resistant coating on both sides of the lens.
The Readerest frames are made with spring-loaded hinges designed to help them maintain their shape. The frame material is bendy and lightweight, designed to adjust to the shape of your nose.
This model of blue light blocking glasses has a rectangular frame and boasts one of the largest selections of frame colors, including black, black blue, black camo, charcoal, clear, light blue, peach, and tortoise. When purchased on Amazon, the Readerest Blue Light Blocking Reading Glasses are eligible for return.
Best Orange-Tinted Glasses
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The Spectra479 Amber Glasses are designed to target wavelengths in the 280 to 490 nm spectrum, including UV light from the sun. The glasses feature a flexible wraparound frame design, enabling them to comfortably fit many different head shapes and sizes.
This design also effectively blocks light from the sides and the tops of the frames, as well as from directly in front of the wearer. The lenses are tinted orange but are designed to allow non-blue light to pass through, so they do not have an opaque appearance or a dark tint that would obscure the wearer’s eyes. This makes them suitable for both daytime and nighttime use.
Spectra479 offers the glasses in one size and one color, black. Customers can return the glasses for free when ordered via Amazon.
As the name suggests, blue light blocking glasses are a type of eyewear with special lenses designed to filter out blue light.
Blue light refers to a specific wavelength in the visible spectrum. The visible spectrum encompasses all the light wavelengths that the human eye can see, including the entire rainbow of colors from red to violet. Among the visible colors, blue light has a relatively short wavelength and delivers high levels of energy to the eye.
Blue light is very common. When you go outside, your eyes are awash in blue light coming from the sun. Artificial sources of blue light are also ubiquitous in modern life. From fluorescent and LED lighting to all of the various screens we use, we’re frequently bathed in blue light from morning to night.
While blue light during the day plays a positive role in regulating our sleep-wake cycle, too much exposure to blue light in the evening can disrupt sleep patterns for children and adults alike. One solution is to end screen time several hours before bed. But for those who don’t want to give up their nightly gaming session or Twitter scroll, blue light blocking glasses can help shield your eyes from this high-energy wavelength in the evening.
With hundreds of options on the market, choosing the right pair of blue light blocking glasses can seem like a daunting task. It’s key to arm yourself with an idea of your own preferences, as well as a basic understanding of the science behind blue light blocking glasses.
From fit and color to cost and customer service policies, keeping certain key factors in mind can help you narrow down your choices when shopping for blue light blocking glasses.
Comfort and Fit
It’s important that the glasses you choose sit comfortably on your face without causing any pain or irritation. If the manufacturer lists the specific dimensions of the frames, you can compare the size of the frames to your own prescription glasses or to the measurements of your face. Some frames are also made with flexible materials designed to adapt to different face shapes.
Blue light blocking glasses come in a range of different light blocking abilities. Consider what time of day you’ll be using your blue light glasses, and how much blue light blocking you really need. Glasses with red- or orange-tinted lenses block a wider spectrum and larger percentage of blue light. However, they can also distort the colors on your computer screen. Clear or light yellow-tinted glasses are designed to target a narrower range of high-energy blue light commonly emitted from artificial sources. These may be more appropriate for daytime use.
Shape and Weight
To be able to read, complete computer work, or play games comfortably for several hours in the evening, you’ll need a pair of blue light blocking glasses that suits the shape of your face and doesn’t feel cumbersome. If you already wear prescription glasses, consider finding a pair of blue light blocking glasses that are large enough to comfortably sit over your current glasses. Many people also prefer glasses that are lightweight, so be sure to check the weight of your chosen model before purchasing.
For the best chance at finding a pair of blue light blocking glasses that fit your face, you’ll want to search for a model that offers multiple size options. Before buying, try them on or double-check the dimensions. Two of the most important measurements to take note of include the width of your face and nose.
Style & Color Options
Blue light blocking glasses are available in many different colors and styles. Some manufacturers sell glasses in packs of two or three so you can switch the glasses to suit your current mood. If style is important to you, you may prefer to opt for glasses with less of a yellow tint, bearing in mind that this style generally allows a greater percentage of blue light to reach your eyes.
Trial & Return Policy
If you’re ordering your blue light blocking glasses online, it’s important to find a model that comes with a generous trial period or return policy. Eyewear is very personal, and if you’re not able to try on a pair of glasses before you make your purchase, it’s nice to be able to return them in the event they don’t fit properly or the color and style aren’t what you expected.
Blue light blocking glasses can cost anywhere from $15 to $50, with many models around the $20 price-point. More expensive glasses may offer additional features, such as more unique style options or a greater percentage of blue light blocked. When shopping for blue light blocking glasses, you’ll have to weigh the benefits against the cost and keep your personal budget in mind.
Blue light blocking glasses are glasses that are designed to prevent blue light from reaching your eyes. The concept of blue light blockers is based on the discovery that exposure to blue light suppresses the release of melatonin, the sleep hormone. Blocking blue light is therefore thought to be an easy and inexpensive way to help people sleep after using electronics in the evening. Glasses designed to filter out only the most high-energy blue light may also help reduce eye strain during the day.
Natural blue light emitted by the sun is crucial for regulating your sleep-wake cycle. During the day, exposure to sunlight promotes alertness. At night, darkness stimulates the release of melatonin. Without these natural light cues, your body would have a hard time knowing when to wake up and when to fall asleep.
Due to the ever-increasing availability of artificial light sources such as light bulbs and computer screens, many of us are exposed to light late in the evening. Electronic screens in particular are rich in blue light, meaning they have a similar effect to sunlight. Extensive research has shown that excessive screen time, especially before bed, can disrupt the natural regulation of your sleep-wake cycle.
Blue light blocking glasses are designed to specifically filter out the blue wavelengths of light before they reach your eyes. Most blue light blocking glasses target ultraviolet light with a wavelength of 200 to 400 nanometers (nm), as well as violet light between 400 and 440 nm and blue light up to 500 nm. With less blue light reaching your eyes, your body is free to produce melatonin to help prepare for sleep.
Traditional blue light blocking glasses are orange- or amber-tinted. As blue light is a visible wavelength, filtering out blue light has an effect on the way you perceive colors. Therefore, while orange and amber blue light blockers may be more effective than clear glasses, most people consider them to be less user-friendly, especially for applications that require seeing colors.
Accordingly, some manufacturers market blue light blocking glasses with lenses that are practically clear. These glasses target high-energy violet and blue light between 400 and 450 nm, but they filter out a smaller percentage of blue light overall. They are engineered to offer a balance of blue light blocking and normal visibility.
Emerging evidence suggests that using blue light blocking glasses may successfully prevent bright lights from interfering with your sleep hormones. In these studies, people who wore blue light blocking glasses slept better and didn’t experience the drop in melatonin normally associated with evening light exposure.
Light is one of the most important external factors that helps control our sleep-wake cycle.
Before the advent of electricity, humans slept and woke according to the timing of the sunrise and sunset. Sunlight is composed of a wide range of light wavelengths, including the entire visible spectrum from red to violet as well as ultraviolet (UV) and infrared wavelengths. However, blue light in the range of 446 to 477 nm has the most significant impact on the sleep-wake cycle.
When it comes to natural light from the sun, blue light is very helpful. Exposure to a healthy amount of blue light in the daytime promotes alertness and helps you sleep better at night. However, too much blue light exposure later in the evening makes it harder to fall asleep and may also contribute to poor sleep quality and morning grogginess.
Popular electronic devices such as smartphones, tablets, gaming devices, and televisions emit blue light. Blue light blocking glasses are intended to act as a barrier between you and these artificial blue light sources to prevent your late night screen time from disturbing your sleep.
In addition to wearing blue light blocking glasses, there are many lifestyle changes you can make to reduce your exposure to blue light in the evening. You may also want to consider talking with your eye doctor about bright light exposure and protection at your next eye exam.
One of the most effective ways to reduce blue light exposure and improve your sleep is to avoid using electronics before bed. Ideally, you should try to end screen time at least 1 hour before you go to bed, to give your body time to ramp up melatonin production. Instead of scrolling through social media, consider winding down by reading a book or listening to music.
Fluorescent lights and LED bulbs typically emit more blue light than warmer-toned incandescent light bulbs, though plenty of manufacturers are starting to make LED lightbulbs that emulate the color pattern of incandescent lightbulbs. Consider switching to warmer-toned lightbulbs or installing a dimmer to reduce the brightness of your home lighting as you approach bedtime. Similarly, using a dim red night light during midnight bathroom trips can help provide illumination while limiting your blue light exposure.
If you must use electronic devices at night, consider installing dimming software. Software programs such as f.lux adjust the type of light that your screen emits. Using this software, your screen releases more blue light in the morning to keep you alert but slowly shifts to low-energy red light as you approach your bedtime. Some devices also come with built-in nighttime settings that switch to a black background at night, or automatically decrease the brightness of your screen and shift your display to warmer colors late in the evening.
Another option for those that must use screens at night is a physical blue light filter that can be installed over your screen to block the majority of blue light from reaching your eyes.
Blue light blocking glasses typically range in price from $15 to $50, with an average price of approximately $30. Most blue light blocking glasses don’t require prescription lenses, so they are relatively inexpensive to produce.
While there isn’t a consensus among the medical community, some research demonstrates that blue light blocking glasses may help pave the way for sleep by helping boost melatonin production. Orange-tinted lenses block more blue light than amber-tinted lenses, and amber-tinted lenses block more blue light than clear lenses. Red-tinted lenses block the most light, but they are rarely worn as they make it very difficult to see.
Blue light blocking glasses are sold online and in brick-and-mortar stores, each of which offers certain advantages depending on your needs. By shopping for glasses in pharmacies, drug stores, and eyewear stores, you may be able to ask for advice from the store attendant regarding the best model for you. However, by shopping online, you’ll be able to choose from a much wider selection of brands and models. Online retailers also tend to have more competitive prices, as well as generous return policies in case you’re not satisfied with your purchase.
If the manufacturer can provide you with the transmittance spectrum report for your glasses, then you can see for yourself what percentage of blue light they block. An alternative method is to use an online color test, or devise your own by looking up an image of a rainbow online. A Google image search should bring up many pictures that look like a rainbow of colors blending into one another from red to blue to violet. When observed through a pair of blue light blocking glasses, the blue section should appear darker or even black, depending on the strength of the glasses.
Certain blue light blocking glasses come with a so-called blue light laser and ask you to shine the laser through the lens of your glasses to verify that no blue light reaches a white paper held up to the other side. However, most of these lasers actually emit violet light, which is not the light that most affects the sleep-wake cycle.
Blue light blocking glasses are considered just as safe for your eyes as wearing regular sunglasses. The only caveat is that wearing blue light blocking glasses during the day may be counterproductive. While it’s important to reduce your exposure to blue light in the later evening hours, blue light exposure from the sun in the early morning and afternoon helps regulate your internal clock. If you’re looking for a daytime pair of glasses to help reduce eye strain, opt for blue light blocking glasses that are almost transparent, instead of visibly amber- or orange-tinted.
Standard prescription lenses do not block blue light. However, prescription blue light blocking glasses are available, and some manufacturers make blue light blocking glasses that fit over prescription glasses. Ask your optometrist about prescription options for blue light blocking lenses.
Blue light blocking glasses may be a worthwhile option for people who have trouble getting to sleep after too much screen time. With models available at the $20 price-point, blue light blocking glasses are a fairly low-cost and easy-to-use solution for shielding your eyes from blue light and potentially improving your sleep.
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