Driving in bright sunlight can be dangerous if you don’t have the right protective eyewear. It’s important to always have a pair of sunglasses on hand, even in the cooler months. Rain and snow can reflect the sun, making shades a year-round essential for all drivers. If you haven’t needed sunglasses whilst driving so far, that doesn’t make you immune to the sun’s effects. Consider investing in a new pair of sunglasses to make sure you’re safe no matter the weather.
But some types of sunglasses are better suited to driving than others. Here are some helpful ways of identifying the best fit for you.
One of the most important factors to consider is how tinted the lenses of your sunglasses are. It’s widely agreed upon that category three sunglasses offer an optimal balance between sun protection and visibility for road users. A higher category will be too dark to see clearly, while a lower category might not shield you from the brightest rays.
When it comes to colour, it’s recommended that you choose brown, grey or amber rather than black, as they allow you to see better. But colours like blue and pink might mean you can’t distinguish between traffic lights as clearly, so it’s best to avoid those as well. A polarised finish is a great option for drivers, as it can effectively help to reduce glare.
If you need prescription glasses for driving, your sunglasses must have this same prescription to keep you and other road users safe. If you’re worried about swapping your sunglasses for your glasses when the sun dips behind a cloud, you could consider transition lenses.
Transition lenses adapt to your surroundings by becoming darker when the sunlight is brighter, but act as normal glasses when indoors or in duller conditions. Although a little costlier than buying sunglasses on their own, these two-in-one shades make life that extra bit easier.
But beware, some transition lenses are not suitable for driving and you should always make sure the ones you buy are approved for use on the road. Being inside a car can cause the lenses to be slower to react to light, so make your choice carefully.
Some sunglasses shapes aren’t as well-suited to driving as others. Though they may not be the height of fashion, sporty wrap-around glasses protect your eyes from all angles, keeping you safe from unexpected glare to your sides. If you prefer something more fashion-friendly, aviator sunglasses are also a popular choice considering their military history.
Make sure your sunglasses fit properly and stay in place. Although many sunglasses don’t come with nose pads, it’s worth considering a pair that does to make sure they don’t slip off your face in the middle of the road.
Whatever sunglasses you choose for driving, you should ensure that the pair you choose has UV 400 protection. This means you can be sure that your eyes are being protected from UV rays and your sunglasses were made in accordance with regulations.