Most of us are spending our time indoors, but we'd be going out to take in the summer air with the weather starting to change. So, now's the time to refresh your eyewear so that you can step out in style.
A good pair of sunglasses not only change your style and looks but shield your eyes from ultraviolet (UV) exposure. It also reduces eyestrain in bright conditions and keeps your eyes safe from flying debris and others like cataract, eye cancer and snow blindness which we'll be discussing later in the article.
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Sunglasses are a universal symbol of style, but they are equally important to protect your eyes. Finding the right pair is key to your comfort, whether you're heading out for a walk, driving to work, or climbing a mountain. To help you choose a good pair, and get you in the right frame of mind, here's our detailed buying guide.
Some people wear sunglasses as an accessory to enhance their everyday look, whereas others wear specially designed sports sunglasses for fast-paced adventures. Depending upon your daily activity, you too can choose from different types of sunglasses.
These are the most common type of sunglasses that you'll find in the market. They are designed to protect your eyes from harmful UV rays while you indulge yourself in daily chores. Whether you're driving to work, walking through the town, or attending a summer wedding, casual sunglasses will be your perfect partner.
Casual sunglasses are not fit to handle the intensity of sports and other outdoor activities because they are not made of that durable material. Ray-Ban, Fastrack, IDEE and Vogue are some of the popular brands in India that offer stylish casual wear sunglasses.
If you're a sports enthusiast and step out almost daily to play a sport or indulge in outdoor activity, sports sunglasses will be your best bet. They are designed with high-end frame and lens material that are impact-resistant and flexible compared to their casual counterpart.
Sports sunglasses are designed especially for people indulged in running, hiking, biking and other fast-paced adventures. They feature a grippy nose pad and temple ends that keep the frame in place even when you're sweating. Some sports sunglasses have interchangeable lenses, giving you the freedom to adjust lenses depending on different light conditions.
Higher altitudes have intense light, and then there's sunlight reflecting off snow, both of which can harm naked eyes. Glacier sunglasses protect your eyes during such conditions. They are mostly worn by people indulging in snow sports.
Glacier sunglasses have wrap-around extensions to block light from entering at the sides. They also protect us from wind and cold while increasing our vision in the snow. They even seal the wind, snow, and ice from entering into your eyes, thus providing extra warmth.
Besides making a fashion statement, sunglasses protect the eyes and delicate skin under the eyes from harmful UV rays. Manufacturers cover the lens of a sunglass with a protective coating to protect your eyes against permanent sun damage and cataracts (a medical condition that leads to blurred vision).
There are two types of UV protection light you should consider before buying sunglasses. UVB (short wave ultraviolet B) rays are super intense and may cause sunburn. Their intensity is stronger in the summer months, between 10 am to 4 pm. However, their effect is amplified by snow. The recommended standards for UV protection in sunglasses offer at least 70% UVB protection.
UVA (long wave ultraviolet A) rays are much less intense but are 30-50 times more prevalent than UVB rays. As per the recent studies, they seem to be capable of contributing to the development of a certain type of cataracts. The recommended standards for UV protection in sunglasses offer at least 60% UVA protection.
Photochromic lenses, also known as transition lenses, adapt to changing light intensities and conditions. They darken when exposed to UV light and lighten when indoors in softer light or at night. Photochromic lenses take longer to transition in cold conditions. They also don't work well when driving as the car's windshield does not allow UVB rays to penetrate.
Interchangeable lenses come with removable lenses in different colours that give you the freedom to change the lens as per your activities and conditions. If you are a travel and sports enthusiast and need a reliable lens performance in a variety of situations, these lenses will work well for you.
Frame material plays a huge role in deciding the comfort, durability, and functionality of your sunglasses. There are a variety of materials available, each with different functionality, price range, and style.
Metal is one of the most commonly used frame materials. It is corrosion-resistant, easy to shape, and easy to tailor to different face shapes and frame styles. Also, since it is sleek and smooth, it will not obstruct your field of vision.
A metal frame is less durable and not ideal for high-impact activities. In case, you're aligned towards the metal frame, make sure not to leave your sunglasses in a closed-up car in summers as the metal can get too hot to wear. Some common metal frames you will find are stainless steel, aluminium and titanium.
Nylon is lightweight and more durable than metal. It is resistant to stress from temperature fluctuations and remains super flexible while still retaining the stiffness required for safety. Therefore, they are suitable for sports and performance activities.
Nylon frames are not as adjustable as metal ones unless they have an internal wire core inserted. These frames are used in wraparound sunglasses that curve around the head, from the front to the side and other shapes that are otherwise difficult to produce.
Acetate is used to make plastic but is a little different from the standard plastic frame. They are stronger, more flexible, and usually found on high-style sunglasses. Acetate frames are popular among women because they are available in a variety of colours and textures.
The acetate frames keep their colour intact because the colour is embedded in the material and not painted on. Another thing to note is that though these frames are flexible, they are not intended for high-activity sports because they can restrict your eyesight.
Plastic frames come in a range of colours and styles, making them a preferred choice for women looking for some fashionable glasses. These frames are also less expensive as compared to the other available frames.
Plastic frames are made out of acrylic, polyurethane, and many more synthetic and man-made plastic materials. These frames are lightweight, but less likely to break when dropped, provided you have good lenses installed.
Lens material plays an important factor you need to consider when buying a pair of sunglasses. The affects the appearance, clarity, weight, durability, and safety. Glass offers superior optical clarity, assuring distortion-free vision. It is extremely durable and scratch-resistant, but more expensive. It is not ideal for active sports because it is heavy and when impacted, it may 'spider' or break.
Plastic lenses are lightweight and impact-resistant. They are much lighter and affordable than glass lenses. A plastic lens is the most common type of material used in this day and age. They are durable, but comfortable to wear, and are available in a wide variety of colour and design options.
Polycarbonate lenses are similar material to that of aircraft windshields and are even thinner and lighter than plastic lenses. They are virtually indestructible but have a lower level of scratch resistance. They are ideal for someone who moves around frequently in their sunglasses.
There are endless selections of sunglasses available to accommodate every face shape. Oval face shape is the most easily recognisable one, and it is considered to adapt to most of the frame styles. You can choose from vintage-inspired round frames, sporty wraparounds and octagonal frame styles.
Square face shape is found on the leading men and women in Bollywood, such as Amir Khan and Anushka Sharma. Round or semi-rimmed sunglasses and cat-eye frames can soften the angular features of those with the square face shape. Sharp-edged rectangular frames convey a sporty and bold look to those with a round face.
People with long faces should go with oversized glasses, such as aviators and butterfly with thick frames to showcase a perfectly balanced structure. Heart-shaped faces should try winged-out frames and aviators to drawn attention to the lower part of their face.
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Ray-Ban UV Protected Unisex Sunglass
Womens Cat Eye UV Protected Sunglasses
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Unisex Aviator UV Protected Sunglasses
A Timeless Look with Calvin Klein's Aviator
Unisex Full Rim Cat Eye Sunglasses
Full-Rimmed Frame in Cat-Eye for Everyday Wear
Unisex Square Sunglasses
Get Yourself in a Vintage Mood with This Classic Pair
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Sports Sunglasses from Fastrack
Women Polarised Oval Sunglasses
Sunglasses with an Oversized and Adorable Fit
Unisex Full Rim Non Polarized Sunglasses
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Charles & Keith
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Ray-Ban is an iconic brand in the premium eyewear market. Its frame styles have a timeless appeal and are loved by people from different walks of life. Deepika Padukone and Kareena Kapoor are often seeing wearing Ray-Ban sunglasses.
This particular piece is one of the most popular designs from Ray-Ban. You can pair it with a denim and t-shirt, a summer dress, or ethnic wear. Its lenses are UV protected to keep your eyes safe from harsh sunlight.
If you're looking for a trendy pair of sunglasses to enhance your fierce look, Tommy's full rimmed frame shades will make for a desirable pick. This UV protected pair is crafted in beautiful hues to accentuate your eyes.
The coloured lenses ensure crisp and sharp sight while protecting your eyes from UV radiation. This is the gorgeous piece from Tommy's collection that's available at a reasonable price.
Making its way to the top of our list is this classic aviator piece from Calvin Klein. Offering excellent UV protection and best visual clarity, this sunglass is a perfect accessory for the fashion-conscious crowd.
This is a unisex piece, so you can even share it with your brother, husband, friends, or father. The frame and glass are made up of quality material to ensure easy maintenance.
IDEE is a functional and super-affordable brand that has taken the Indian sunglass market by storm. They have a wide collection of frame styles and lens materials, each with its unique appeal. This full-rimmed frame is one of their best sellers in woman's collection.
These are pretty much every day wear sunglasses that are lightweight and durable. The polarised glass will enhance the image quality, making it easier for you to deflect glare while driving.
When you need a versatile pair of sunglasses, this unisex square-framed sunglass is a vision in sunny days. These glasses will stand out in the crowd with their unique mirrored glasses. They are comfortable, sturdy and fit perfectly.
The lenses are UV protected, and these should look great on those with round face shape to define their not-so-soft features. Though the glasses are not very affordable, they are the best you can get from Ray-Ban.
Fasttrack is considered to be the youth brand of India for its chic and trendy collection. So, when it comes to buying sunglasses for daily wear, or sports specific collections at affordable rates, the name Fastrack comes first.
These sunglasses are designed with UV protected lens and polycarbonate frame to give you the maximum benefit while playing sports. The shades are pretty lightweight but are prone to damage.
Made up of plastic and metal frame, these gorgeous pair of sunglasses are durable and lightweight. They also feature polarised and UV protected lenses, which makes them an ideal pair to be worn while driving.
These polarised shades offer a perfect balance between thick and thin frames. The only negative point we see in these glasses is that the material isn't scratch-resistant. So, you might want to handle them with care.
A must-have style for all the fashionistas! This quality and stylish pair from Provogue is for anyone's collection, as the versatile design works for most face shapes. Plus, this pair has a perfect colour of lens and frame that'll go with different coloured outfits.
The only con of the sunglass is that it has a non-polarised lens, which means it will not filter out light that well, which might be a little uncomfortable for your eyes.
With just the right touch of style and glamour, these shades will keep you company on most of your outings. Whether you're holidaying in Bali or strolling the busy streets of Delhi, or lounging in a hotel, these sunglasses from Charles & Keith will make you look good.
The lenses are UV protected, so you need not worry about your eyes' safety. However, the only downside is that the glasses have a metal frame which makes them prone to damage. So, be careful while wearing and storing this pair.
Women have a special corner for this brand for its quality shoes and bags. Now is the time to put some limelight to Carlton London's sunglass collection. This particular pair is loved by many for its unique design and mirrored lens colour.
However, some reviewers found the sunglasses a bit difficult to wear as its extended metallic frame hurts the face of those with chubby cheeks. Though the design is unique and oh-so-stylish, it is uncomfortable for a few.
Keeping your skin protected from the sun is as important as wearing sunglasses to protect your eyes. Here are a couple of related articles that'll help you get summer-ready in no time.
While buying a sunglass, no doubt, good looks are important, but there is more to know. There are heaps of different frame materials, lenses, frame styles and construction combination available in the market that you need to consider. We hope this article helped you understand all that's required to know before buying a pair of sunglasses.
Author: Srishti Sikka
No. 1: Ray-Ban | Wayfarer
No. 2: Tommy Hilfiger | Womens Cat Eye UV Protected Sunglasses
No. 3: Calvin Klein | Unisex Aviator UV Protected Sunglasses
No. 4: IDEE | Unisex Full Rim Cat Eye Sunglasses
No. 5: Ray-Ban | Unisex Square Sunglasses
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