5 Best Polarized Sunglasses to Protect Your Eyes (2020 Review)

5 Best Polarized Sunglasses to Protect Your Eyes (2020 Review)

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There can be few greater pleasures than sitting outside and relaxing on a hot, sunny day, however, sunshine does not come without its problems. Apart from the extra dollars spent on cold drinks and ice cream, the glare from the sun can be extremely dangerous.

Glare is especially dangerous when you are driving and on a more general level, it can cause eye strain and prolonged headaches. Wearing polarized sunglasses that counteract glare can help but knowing which to buy can be tricky.

To help you we are going to review 5 of the best polarized sunglasses to protect your eyes which will highlight their many features. We'll also answer some of the most common questions about polarized sunglasses. In doing so, we hope to help you make a more informed choice when it comes time for you to choose which polarized sunglasses you are going to wear to protect your eyes.

Quick Picks

If you'd rather spend your time outside in the fresh air and sunshine, than indoors reading reviews, then we can't blame you. For that reason, we have compiled a quick list of the best polarized sunglasses, along with our rating for each one.

Best For ValueBest For ValueGamma Ray Optics Sports Wrap Polarized SunglassesCLICK HERE FOR PRICE
Editor's ChoiceEditor's ChoiceReks Sling-Blade Polarized SunglassesCLICK HERE FOR PRICE
Best For StyleBest For StyleAttcl Men's Fashion Polarized SunglassesCLICK HERE FOR PRICE
Best For Unique DesignBest For Unique Design4EST Shades Maple Wood Polarized SunglassesCLICK HERE FOR PRICE
Best For Sports and Outdoor ActivitiesBest For Sports and Outdoor ActivitiesTorege Polarized Sports Sunglasses With 3 Interchangeable LensesCLICK HERE FOR PRICE

Best Polarized Sunglasses to Protect Your Eyes: Reviews

Best For Value: Gamma Ray Optics Sports Wrap Polarized Sunglasses

Our first polarized sunglasses are made by Gamma Ray Optics and these come in the sports/wrap style. This basically means that the legs are thick and curved to match the curvature of your head. These also have a thicker frame at the front which can help block a lot of sunlight.

The frame is made from a thermoplastic material which helps keep the sunglasses flexible, lightweight as well as providing a degree of durability too, which will be welcome if you’re wearing them while playing sports.

Naturally, the lenses are polarized, and they’re manufactured from a modern material called Tri-Acetate Cellulose (TAC). This is a material used in sunglasses lenses which is particularly effective at blocking out UV rays which can be harmful to the eyes.

The construction of the lenses uses multiple layers which all provide a specific benefit. One layer provides UV filtration and another the anti-glare characteristic of the sunglasses. There are other layers that provide the durability and strength for the lenses, plus the outer layer has a film that is scratch resistant.

One of the most important features of these polarized sunglasses is their price. Often polarized sunglasses can be three or more times what you will pay for these ones, so if you are looking for a low-cost option when choosing yours, these ticks that box.

PROS

  • Durable and lightweight frame
  • Wraparound legs for comfort
  • Outstanding UV filtration
  • Multi-layer, anti-glare lenses
  • Excellent value for money

CONS

  • No rubber on inner leg
  • Not ideal for reading

Editor's Choice: Reks Sling-Blade Polarized Sunglasses

We move from a very thick frame, to one which is very thin. However, the fact that they are thin does not compromise their durability. In fact, these are classed by the manufacturer, Reks, as being ‘unbreakable' thanks to the memory-flex polymer that has been used in their construction.

Now, we know that is a bold claim, but if used properly the frames on these sunglasses should spring back into shape, even if they are flexed a great deal when putting them on or removing them.

From the frames, we now move to the most important aspect of these polarized sunglasses and that is the lenses. These are ‘Lumolox' branded lenses which Reks have developed to provide the maximum levels of glare reduction. They are made to, not only reduce glare, but to also be flexible and strong at the same time, thus prolonging their lifetime.

Some of the lenses specific features include an anti-reflective coating, the ability to eliminate 99% of glare, they are 10 times more shatter resistant than standard sunglasses lenses, and they have multiple layers of scratch-resistant coatings to protect them.

Due to them having a smaller profile than those polarized sunglasses with thick frames, the Reks sunglasses are ideal for activities where headwear needs to be worn such as a cycling helmet, or baseball cap.

They also come with a number of choices with respect to the polarized lens color, and to ensure you have somewhere to keep them safe, you also get a carrying case supplied with them.

PROS

  • Memory-flex unbreakable frames
  • Anti-reflective coating
  • Multiple anti-scratch coatings
  • 99% glare reduction
  • Lens color options

CONS

  • Rather tight around nose
  • No cleaning cloth

Best For Style: Attcl Men's Fashion Polarized Sunglasses

Let's be honest and admit that many of us buy sunglasses every bit as much for the way they make us look cooler, as for the benefits they provide for our eyes. While that is not the recommended way to choose sunglasses, it has to be said that even some of the best protective sunglasses do look stylish.

You should hopefully see that with these Attcl polarized sunglasses, style goes to a whole extra level. With them having a frame that is contoured and styled to make these look as sleek as possible, you will certainly stand out from the crowd when wearing these, for all the right reasons.

The frame is made from an aluminum and magnesium alloy which means that not only are they very robust, they are also extremely lightweight. They weigh a mere 20 grams which is the equivalent of around 3/4 of an ounce. In other words, these polarized sunglasses weigh less than a slice of bread!

In terms of how these sunglasses protect your eyes, the lenses are coated with UV400 protection which should eliminate 100% UVA and UVB rays plus ensure that any glare reflected towards your eyes is nullified.

One last point which refers back to these being the polarized sunglasses to go for if you like style, and that is the huge choice of colors. There's obviously black, which is always cool, but if you want to stand out more, you could go for silver-blue, orange-red, purple or any of the other 13 options that are available to choose from.

PROS

  • Very stylish design
  • Extremely lightweight
  • Strong alloy frame
  • Specially engineered lenses
  • Multiple color options

CONS

  • Lens scratch easily
  • Nose piece may leave divots

Best For Unique Design: 4EST Shades Maple Wood Polarized Sunglasses

Prior to seeing these 4EST sunglasses, had someone suggested that we would be reviewing a pair of sunglasses made from wood, we'd have thought that the sunshine and heat had got to them in more ways than one. However, here they are, and we have to admit we are very impressed.

First, they look a lot more stylish, than you might anticipate, and from certain angles it is difficult to see that they’re actually made from wood at all.  The fact is they are, and specifically, they are made from maple wood. You have three options in terms of the wood frame colors, which are brown maple, black maple, with a third option being cherry wood.

Apart from their uniqueness you might be wondering what other advantages there are of wooden frames on a pair of polarized sunglasses. There are a few, with the most practical being that it makes them very lightweight, and extremely comfortable.

The other benefit is yet another unique aspect of these sunglasses, based on the fact that wood floats on water. This means that if your sunglasses should ever fall off while you are paddling in the sea, or walking along the riverbank, you should be able to easily rescue them from the surface of the water.

Obviously, these sunglasses also have an important role to fulfill, and that is to protect your eyes from glare amongst other things. They utilize UV400 polarized lenses to achieve that by eliminating harmful UV light and harmful glare.

There is one final thing we must tell about these sunglasses, which we hope you will love, especially if you care about the environment. The manufacturers have pledged to plant 2 trees with every pair of their polarized sunglasses purchased, which adds one final unique attribute to these sunglasses.

PROS

  • Unique wooden frames
  • Very lightweight and comfortable
  • Excellent glare protection
  • Float if dropped in water
  • Three wood color options

CONS

  • Very fragile if dropped
  • Case is large

Best For Sports and Outdoor Activities: Torege Polarized Sunglasses With 3 Interchangeable Lenses

If you are looking for a pair of polarized sunglasses to protect your eyes, especially for when you are playing sports, then you should seriously consider these polarized sunglasses from Torege.

First, they are very sleek, thanks to the rimless frame, which is made from an extremely durable material, which Torege gives you a lifetime warranty on should they break. That warranty also extends to the lenses breaking as well.

These sunglasses being lightweight mean that they are ideal for when running, cycling, playing golf or baseball, and they are especially suited to when you are running or hiking.

In terms of protecting your eyes, you have not just one option, but three, due to the fact that these sunglasses even come with a set of three interchangeable lenses. This allows you to swap them around to match the light conditions.

The main lens is for normal daytime use for activities like driving, there is a yellow lens for looking cool use at nighttime, and the third lens gives you enhanced clarity when conditions are changeable. All three lenses provide 100% protection against UV-A and B rays and reduce reflected glare to zero, which is especially important for when you are driving.

They offer great value for money, and if you wish to indulge yourself, you can choose from up to eight different options for the lens colors.

PROS

  • Sleek and lightweight rimless frame
  • Ideal for sports and outdoor activities
  • 3 interchangeable lenses to suit conditions
  • Choice of eight lens colors
  • Lifetime breakage warranty

CONS

  • Switching lenses needs great care
  • Nose-piece design is poor

The Dangers to Your Eyes from Sunlight

If you ask many people what sense they would least like to lose, the vast majority would surely say their sight. After all, without touch, taste, smell, and hearing you could still live much as you do now to some degree, but without sight, you become totally dependent on others. Assuming that you too value your sight and the health of your eyes, then it is important to understand the dangerous effects that the sun can have on them.

The first two dangers sound very alike, and they are UV-A and UV-B rays. These are types of ultraviolet light that emanate from the sun, and each of them damages your sight in different ways. UV-A can negatively impact your main vison and in particular, an area called the macula which is part of your retina.

UV-B is usually absorbed by your cornea but when the cornea is unable to do so effectively, UV-B can be particularly damaging to your sight, and more so, than UV-A.

Excess sunlight in your eyes can lead to the following conditions:

  • Cataracts which is a clouding of the eye's lens which can cause issues with focusing on objects
  • Photokeratitis is effectively your eyes being sunburned due to too much exposure to the sunlight without protection such as sunglasses
  • Pterygium is a growth that can occur on the white of your eye, and if it grows large enough can block your sight
  • Macular degeneration affects the retina and is often found in older patients who have spent much of their lives outdoors in the sunshine
  • Skin cancer can just as easily occur around the eyelids as any other part of the skin if you have been exposed to long periods of sunshine without protection around your eyes

How Polarized Lenses Protect Your Eyes

Polarized lenses are able to protect your eyes due to the way in which their lenses are manufactured. Unlike standard lenses which are often just a curved piece of plastic, possibly with a laminate on the surface, polarized lenses consist of several layers and many of these layers are coated with special chemicals.

The reason polarized lenses can eliminate glare is that the reflected light, instead of going straight into your eye and thus compromising your vision, is blocked from getting through. The reason it is blocked is that reflected light comes towards your eyes horizontally and with polarized lenses the filter is vertical and thus almost all the horizontal reflected light is eliminated.

What to Look for When Choosing Polarized Sunglasses

It is important to realize that when you are looking for a pair of polarized sunglasses to protect your eyes, you should be assessing their ability to keeping your eyes safe from glare, before you look at styles, frames, and colors. Do it the other way around and it is akin to choosing the prettiest and most colorful parachute but ignoring the broken buckle and the dozen holes in it as you jump out the airplane.

Your eyesight is precious, so please ensure that you check the specifications in relation to how much protection a pair of sunglasses should provide your eyes. Once you have established that the sunglasses you are considering meet the criteria, you can then narrow your choice down in terms of other factors.

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When choosing polarized sunglasses, you first assess their ability to keeping your eyes safe from glare, before you look at styles, frames, and colors.

One factor should certainly be how comfortable they are likely to be, and that will be greatly influenced by what the frame is made from, and how lightweight the sunglasses are.

Next, you will know that certain types of polarized sunglasses lend themselves to certain activities more than others. This is particularly true when it comes to sunglasses which can be worn for sports or other outdoor activities.

One thing you might want to consider is the durability of the frame which is bound to be dependent on the material it has been made from. There are some frames that are regarded as unbreakable so if you want your sunglasses to last you for many years, look for them.

Once you have dealt with all the practicalities of choosing polarized sunglasses you can then turn to pick which style you want. You will obviously have your own thoughts on that so go ahead and choose your favorite.

Pros and Cons of Polarized Sunglasses to Protect Your Eyes

While polarized sunglasses can offer you many positives, they are not without some disadvantages, so let's take a quick look at their pros and cons.

Advantages of Polarized Sunglasses to Protect Your Eyes

The main advantage is that polarized sunglasses can help reduce glare and reflected light, especially from sunshine. This makes many activities safer for you especially, driving. In doing so, polarized sunglasses play a very positive role in helping to keep keeping you, and other road users, safe in certain light conditions

Polarized sunglasses can enhance the clarity of your vision with regards to several aspects including color contrast.  This should make any image or scene clearer and more vivid when looking at them.

They can reduce eyestrain and eye fatigue which are particularly prevalent during sunny days when glare and reflected light might be at their most troublesome. Eyestrain is caused by your eyes constantly having to adjust due to glare, so wearing polarized sunglasses reduces these adjustments greatly.

Colors are seen more vividly when you are wearing sunglasses which can be an advantage when looking at colorful scenes, or when trying to distinguish something amongst an array of colors.

Disadvantages of Polarized Sunglasses To Protect Your Eyes

Polarized sunglasses can make viewing certain types of screen more difficult. These include LCD screens on televisions as the images appear to be at different angles from what is being displayed. ATM cash dispenser displays can also be difficult to view when wearing polarized sunglasses.

Regulations can prevent polarized sunglasses from being worn when operating certain types of machinery and technology. A prime example are airline pilots who are often prohibited from wearing them. Those who operate large machinery may also be not be allowed to wear them.

Polarized sunglasses tend to cost more than ordinary sunglasses. It's not always the case as some can be purchased cheaply, but on average you can expect to pay more.

Final Thoughts on the Best Polarized Sunglasses to Protect Your Eyes

With polarized sunglasses playing such an important role in protecting your eyes we probably spent more time considering these than other products we have reviewed. After much thought, we believe the best polarized sunglasses to protect your eyes are the Reks Sling-Blade Polarized Sunglasses.

They may not have the style or the uniqueness of other sunglasses, but they do offer excellent protection for your eyes. They also boast a memory flex polymer frame which can be bent, twisted and sat on, and even then, they should not break. These sunglasses are also lightweight which makes them very comfortable to wear.

With scratch-resistant lenses, they should last you a very long time, and more importantly, they'll protect your eyes from glare for a very long time too.

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