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Sunglasses aren’t just a game-changer in the looks department. They guard your eyes against the sun’s glare and prevent crow’s feet from forming. They’re a must-have for any outdoor enthusiast or urban style savant alike. In this article, let's explore the different types of lens coatings that not only protect your peepers but also amp up your look.

1 4 lens coatings for sunglasses most don’t know about1.1 1. polarised lenses: glare busters1.2 2. uv protection lenses: invisible shields1.3 3. mirrored lenses: stealth mode 1.4 4. gradient lenses: stylish fade1.5 So what lens coating should you choose?

1. Polarised Lenses: Glare Busters

Benefits: Reduce glare from reflective surfaces, enhance clarity, and reduce eye strain.

Ideal for: Driving, fishing, and outdoor sports.

Imagine you're driving and the sunlight reflects off the hood of an oncoming car. Temporary blindness ensues. Polarised lenses cut through the glare, making them ideal for driving, fishing, or any activity where reflective light is a nuisance. They work by filtering out horizontal light waves, ensuring clearer vision and reducing eye strain. Plus, they make colours pop and details sharper. So, whether you're cruising down the highway or casting a line, polarised lenses are your best bet.

They tend to decrease contrast in low-light situations, so they're probably not the right choice if you’re driving at night or looking for your house keys in the bushes.

Learn more about the pros and cons of polarisation here.

2. UV Protection Lenses: Invisible Shields

Benefits: Block harmful UVA and UVB rays, and protect eyes from potential damage.

Ideal for: Everyday wear, particularly in sunny environments.

The sun's UV rays don't just tan your skin; they can harm your eyes too. UV protection lenses are like sunscreen for your eyes, blocking out harmful UVA and UVB rays. They save you from all sorts of eye-related ailments, making them essential year-round accessories.

Believe it or not, their UV protection has nothing to do with their shade. Clear-lens glasses can be just as effective as the darkest of shades at protecting your eyes, as they filter out only the invisible ultraviolet range of the spectrum.

Unfortunately, there are also cheap shades on the market that dim the lights but let all the harmful rays pass through.

Get wise about UV protection in this deep-dive article.

3. Mirrored Lenses: Stealth Mode

Benefits: Reflect light away, reduce brightness, and offer privacy.

Ideal for: High-glare environments, and maintaining a low profile.

Mirrored lenses are your go-to if you're aiming for that star-behind-sunglasses vibe. They have a reflective coating that bounces back light, reducing brightness and providing an extra layer of privacy. They're not just about looks, though; the coating helps reduce eye strain in extremely bright conditions.

Also, they let whoever you’re talking to admire themselves in your glasses while blissfully unaware that you’re not even listening.

4. Gradient Lenses: Stylish Fade

Benefits: Tinted from top to bottom, provide sun protection while allowing clear vision.

Ideal for: Driving, and reading outdoors.

Gradient lenses feature a smooth transition from a darker tint at the top to a lighter tint at the bottom. Their design is practical, as the darker top shields you from overhead sunlight, while the lighter bottom offers a clear view of your dashboard or book – ideal for driving and reading outdoors.

So what lens coating should you choose?

Here is our expert’s recommendation:

  1. Go for polarised lenses for driving, fishing, and other high-glare activities.
  2. Go for UV protection lenses any time the sun’s out, really.
  3. Go for mirrored lenses to hide hangovers and for privacy.
  4. Go for gradient lenses if you need to block out the sun but see the ground.

The right lenses can be the cherry on top of your look, protect your vision, and enhance your visual experiences. So next time you're on the hunt for the perfect pair of shades, remember it's not just about how they look on the outside, but also how they shape your view of the world.