The sun is shining, the temperature is rising, and it's time to bring out your coolest shades because today - June 27th marks National Sunglass Day! This annual observance is dedicated to recognizing the significance of sunglasses, not just as a fashionable accessory but also as a crucial tool for protecting our eyes from harmful UV rays. So, let's dive into the fascinating world of sunglasses and explore why they deserve a day of celebration!
The ever-chic classic - Ray-Ban Clubmaster
A Brief History of Sunglasses
Sunglasses have come a long way since their inception. Did you know that the earliest forms of sunglasses can be traced back to ancient Rome and China, where emperors used polished pieces of smoky quartz to shield their eyes from the sun's glare? Reportedly, in 12th century China, sunglasses were originally developed to conceal facial expressions in high-profile situations. This created quite the air of mystery in political and social situations! Over time, sunglasses evolved into more sophisticated designs, and in the 20th century, they became a popular fashion statement.
Sunglasses similar to what we wear today can be traced back to 18th-century English optician James Ayscough, who originally created spectacles with tinted lenses, which he thought would improve vision.
In the 19th century, a syphilis outbreak emerged in Europe. Yellow and brown-tinted sunglasses were prescribed to people who carried syphilis to counteract the symptom of visual sensitivity to light. (info from: https://www.framesdirect.com/knowledge-center/lens-color-guide)
The first “modern” sunglasses were Foster Grants. They were sold in 1929 in Atlantic City, NJ, by Sam Foster, who initially went into business to make combs. He soon found out that his sunglasses were far more popular than combs!
These are a good duplicate of the sunglasses Audrey Hepburn wore in Breakfast At Tiffany's - Utopiat Audrey Duplicate Style Sunglasses
The original style can be found HERE:
Fashionable and Functional
While sunglasses undeniably add a touch of style to any outfit, their primary purpose is to protect our eyes. Prolonged exposure to harmful ultraviolet (UV) radiation from the sun can lead to serious eye conditions such as cataracts, macular degeneration, and even cancer. High-quality sunglasses with UV protection can significantly reduce the risk of these ailments
My own eye doctor, Dr. Sean Herron of Herron Eye Care in Athens, GA told me that most vision trouble we associate with aging is actually largely due to sun damage resulting from not wearing sunglasses when we were younger. Eyes suffer damage from ultraviolet rays just like the skin. As we cross over the 40-year mark, most of us begin needing reading glasses. This is mostly due to sun damage. So, wear those sunnies and make sure the young people in your life do too!
A seriously cool retro vibe! - Banana Republic Marza Sunglasses
Choosing the Perfect Pair
With countless styles, shapes, and lens options available, finding the perfect pair of sunglasses can be both exciting and overwhelming. Here are a few tips to help you make the right choice:
1. UV Protection: Ensure that your sunglasses offer 100% broad-spectrum UV protection. Look for labels or stickers indicating that they block both UVA and UVB rays.
2. Fit and Comfort: Opt for sunglasses that fit your face well, covering your eyes completely and providing adequate coverage from all angles. Comfort is key, so try on different pairs to find the most comfortable fit.
3. Lens Quality: Consider the lens material and color. Polarized lenses reduce glare and enhance clarity, while mirrored lenses provide added protection against intense light. Additionally, certain lens colors may enhance specific activities, such as gray for driving or brown for outdoor sports.
4. Style and Fashion: Sunglasses are a reflection of your personal style, so choose a design that complements your face shape and expresses your individuality. From classic aviators to trendy cat-eye frames, there's something for everyone. If you are unsure which style to choose for your face, I am happy to help by performing a facial analysis and helping you shop for eyewear! Simply book an appointment with me for a facial analysis and we will find your perfect pair!
Taking Care of Your Shades
To make the most of your sunglasses, it's important to take good care of them. Here are a few maintenance tips:
1. Cleaning: Use a microfiber cloth or lens cleaning solution to gently clean your sunglasses and remove smudges or fingerprints.
2. Storage: Keep your sunglasses in a protective case when not in use to prevent scratches or damage. Avoid leaving them in hot places, such as the dashboard of your car, as extreme heat can warp the frames or lenses and damage non-slip nose pads.
3. Handling: Always handle your sunglasses with clean hands to avoid transferring oils or dirt to the lenses.
4. Maintenance: Regularly check for loose screws or misaligned frames. If needed, take them to an optician for adjustments or repairs.
5. Avoid placing them on top of your head as this stretches and weakens the frame and affects the fit.
Make sure to keep a kit like this one on-hand to maintain your eyewear investment.
Spread the Word and Share Your Shades
National Sunglass Day is the perfect occasion to spread awareness about the importance of UV protection and show off your favorite pair of shades. Take a selfie, post it on social media, and use the hashtag #NationalSunglassDay to join the conversation and encourage others to embrace both style and eye safety.
National Sunglass Day celebrates more than just a fashionable accessory. It reminds us of the vital role sunglasses play in safeguarding our eyes from the sun's harmful rays. So, let's don our shades with confidence,
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