March 29

Do Sunglasses Block Blue Light?

BEINGBAR Sunglasses

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The truth about sunglasses and Blue Light protection


In this post we're answering a few questions that people ask us about a lot, and it's about blue light:

  • Do sunglasses protect your eyes against blue light?
  • What can you do to protect your eyes from blue light?
  • The truth about the actual effect of blue light blocking and where blue light is coming from (and it's not what you expect!)

For some people their sunglasses serve another primary function than just protecting their eyes from UV radiation from the sun. The fashion element of what we now even call "Sun Eyewear" has changed that, up to the point where some people wear their sunglasses indoors. And sometimes not because of the sun!


Since some people wear them indoors, we often get the question if sunglasses also protect our eyes from harmful blue light, emitted from our digital screens. It's a logical question, because you would potentially hit two birds with one stone: you would look fashionable with your sunglasses and could tell everyone you can't take them off for eye protection reasons!


Do sunglasses protect your eyes against blue light?

The quick and easy answer is: Yes. Your favourite shades will filter out blue light from your smart phone, monitor or TV. However, it will not help you much because they block too much of the available light indoors to be comfortable. Sunglasses protect your eyes from UV radiation, including blue light. Some sunglasses protect more than others, depending on their lens color. The more amber/brown colored lenses filter out more than other colors.

Do sunglasses protect your eyes from Blue Light?

The quick and easy answer is: Yes. Your favourite shades will filter out blue light from your smart phone, monitor or TV. However, it will not help you much because they block too much of the available light indoors to be comfortable. Besides that you should know that by far the most blue light comes from the sun, not your smart phone or other digital screen. Beyond 1000 times more, to be exact.

What can you do to protect your eyes from Blue Light?

Science and popular opinion disagree on whether or not you should be worried about digital blue light in relation to your eyes, because digital screens emit just a fraction of the blue light coming from the sun. If you keep your eyes protected outdoors with sunglasses, you do your eyes a bigger favor than protecting them with a "blue light blocker". If you choose to wear sunglasses to protect your eyes specifically from blue light, choose amber or even yellow colored lenses. This color filters out more blue light than other colors

So if you really want to keep your eyes healty from indoor or digital blue light, you have three options:

  • Limit your screen time (for some people this might feel like suggesting to limit breathing)
  • Buy a blue light filter for your phone or monitor. Note that this is not a viable option if you use your device for recreational purposes. They do work for basic activities such as reading and processing emails and reading text
  • Buy a blue light blocker (or some call them "computer glasses"). They come cheap if you look for them. But there is a catch! Scientific research in recent years shows that Blue Light will only be filtered out for about 20% to 30%, depending on what research you read. The rest (70% to 80%) is not blocked, according to the research

The truth about the actual effect of blue light blocking

So should you be concerned about the blue light coming from your screen? I want to repeat what we said before: the blue light from the sun is at least 1000 times stronger than that from your digital screen. And special blue light "blocking" lenses filter out a maximum of 20% to 30% of the actual blue light coming from your screen. So you should know that your indoor efforts will have limited effect compared to outdoor damage done. If you do choose to protect your eyes from blue light outdoors with sunglasses, we recommend amber or yellow tinted lenses.


Interested in quality sunglasses? And more specifically the kind that are Conscious and Sustainable? Shades with a positive story, click here and get inspired!


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