Safety

How to Not Go Blind During the Solar Eclipse

How to Not Go Blind During the Solar Eclipse

In case you haven’t heard, it’s dangerous to stare directly at the sun.

On August 21st, 2017, hundreds of thousands of people across the Continental United States will be doing exactly what their mothers warned them not to do – staring directly at the sun. Staring at the sun on a normal day is fairly bad and can cause plenty of UV-related issues to your eyes. However, on the day of the “Great American Solar Eclipse”, the sunlight will be even more dangerous. Looking at a partial eclipse can literally burn the image into the back of your eye. Scary, right? Well, don’t worry – there is a safe way to view the eclipse! Check out some tips below:

 

  1. Plan Ahead
    Just head over to NASA and you can see the exact path the sun will be taking! Knowing the times can help you plan a party or viewing, know when to grab your glasses, and help you be prepared. For traveling, remember that crowds will be all heading toward totality so accurately plan for extra traffic; that way you aren’t stuck on the freeway during this one in a lifetime event.
  2. Solar Eclipse Glasses
    As much as we know you love your Fuse lenses, even our darkest lens (which is Fuse +Plus Glacier BTW) lets in around 8% of light. In contrast, eclipse viewing 
    glasses only let in about 0.003% of light as well as reducing radiation. These are specialty glasses that you absolutely need if you plan on looking up, even if you do not live in the path of totality. 
  3. Test Them!
    A lot of manufacturers know that Americans are jumping on the solar eclipse wagon and are unfortunately pumping out glasses without accurate testing and false ISO ratings. To ensure your glasses are safe, you can check out the American Astronomical Society’s list of reputable dealers here. When you put them on, they should be so dark that you can not see anything at all – no other light sources – until you look up at the sun.
  4. Keep Them On!
    If you live in the path of totality, you can take off your glasses ONLY during the totality phase of the eclipse. Even the slightest band of sunlight peeking through is still very dangerous to your eyes! Keep the glasses on until your vision is totally blacked out; then, you know it’s safe to take them off (but only for a minute or two).
  5. Save the Puppies! (Or Not)
    OK, I’ll admit the first thing I googled was whether or not my dog needs solar eclipse glasses. However, most pets should be good! It definitely wouldn’t hurt to affix them with a pair (and it would make for a cute picture). But, on a normal day how often do you stare at the sun? Probably zero times because it hurts. Our animals are the same way and they likely won’t know the difference between E-Day and any other day. I would just limit outside time, leave them at home while you’re at eclipse viewing parties, and keep the blinds shut.
  6. Be Camera Wary
    It is definitely a once in a lifetime experience that some people probably want a picture of. However, looking through cameras and binoculars, even with eclipse glasses on, concentrates and magnifies light – which is very dangerous. Many companies sell eclipse filters for your camera so you can eclipse-proof your equipment! You will need one if you plan on photographing this event. However, because of the distance, brightness, and many other factors it can be hard to get a good eclipse picture. Unless you are a professional, maybe just spend your time enjoying the eclipse instead of being frustrated behind the lens. 

We hope this helps you safely view the eclipse. We definitely aren’t eclipse experts; if you are interested in having the best eclipse experience possible, we recommend you go check out Eclipse-101 at NASA.gov. NASA has everything you’ll need to know and will even have a live stream of the eclipse on the 21st! 

 


Header Image from NASA.gov

Posted by Jessica in Safety, Science, 0 comments
Busted! Common Myths About Sunglasses

Busted! Common Myths About Sunglasses

With summer in full swing, many will be or have been reaching for their favorite summer accessory – shades. However, there are a lot of misconceptions floating around about sunglasses. Of course, we know that you know better because you read our blog! So, this summer when you hear a naive sunglass-wearer utter a falsity about their sunglasses – you will know how to respond.

They say: “Darker Lenses offer more sun protection.”

You say: Wrong! Darker lenses offer the same UV protection as their lighter counterparts. Darker lenses can be more comfortable to wear, especially in bright light, since they significantly decrease the amount of light passing through the lens. This can work against you though if you do not make sure that you are buying sunglasses or lenses from a reputable dealer. Since your pupils are more dilated behind dark lenses, if your lenses do not have proper UV protection, harmful UV rays can flow right into your eyes.

 

They say: “Polarized lenses are better for your eyes than regular lenses.”

You say: Nah. If you don’t know what polarized lenses are, you can read up on them here. The short of it is that polarized lenses vastly improve comfort and clarity by blocking annoying glare and increasing contrast. While polarized lenses are definitely recommended due to this fact, they do actually offer the same amount of UV protection as their non-polarized counterparts.

 

They say: “Sun Damage to the eyes is temporary.”

You say: Not Always… Sometimes, some cases of eye sun damage can be temporary – like certain cases of snow blindness. However, most damage develops over time, over a lifetime of UV exposure, and becomes irreversible. Sun exposure contributes to macular degeneration, cataracts, and many other conditions.

 

They say: “I only need to wear sunglasses in summer when the sun is out.”

You say: Try again! Your eyes need protection year round. Yes, even on cloudy, rainy, blah days. Mornings and evenings have more reflected light that can make it straight into your eyes. Light bouncing off of snow is extra harmful. Wearing polarized lenses in the rain can actually help you see! Does that cover all of the excuses? You just have to check out your lenses’ Visual Light Transmission (or VLT) to make you’ll still be able to see out of your shades on those dark, gloomy days.

 

They say: “My child is fine without sunglasses.”

You say: Child abuse! (Just kidding please don’t say that). However, a very significant portion of UV damage can happen before a child is 18! Think about it – kids are outside SO much. Each time they go outside, the UV rays are working their way into their little eyeballs. You give your kid knee pads while he’s learning to ride a bike, why not throw some sunglasses on him too? A bonus is that the shatterproof polycarbonate lenses can help protect their face and eyes if their bike kicks up a few rocks along the way.

 

They say: “Sunglasses are sunglasses. Style or lens color doesn’t matter.”

You say: *Gasp* How dare you? Different styles and lens colors can have awesome benefits. For instance, wrap-style glasses are perfect for blocking sunlight at any angle while bike riding or playing sports. Different lens colors can then help up your game by increasing certain color contrasts. For instance, golfers often prefer amber-rose lenses, like our F30, and hunters look and perform sharp in yellow tinted lenses that can help enhance visibility in low-light conditions. By the way, Fuse has a ton of lens colors that you can test out and find out your favorite lens for all kinds of activities.

 

There you have it! A few common misconceptions about sunglasses, debunked. Now – when anyone starts muttering lies about UV protection, you’ll know what to say. Plus, we’re here to back you up whenever you need. Email us anytime at eyecontact@fuselenses.com

Posted by Jessica in Safety, 1 comment
Driving in the Rain

Driving in the Rain


There is only one thing worse than driving, and that is driving in the rain. We’ve all been there – a few drops fall from the sky and suddenly everyone forgets how to drive. The windshield becomes smudged with rain and visibility is lowered (and is it just me, or does everyone forget they have a turn signal?). Well, there is one thing you can do to ease your driving-in-the-rain pain – wear sunglasses.

No, I’m not crazy – and not any old pair of sunglasses will work. Regular, tinted sunglasses simply darken the world around you. To help combat the effects of rain, only polarized sunglasses will do. This is because Polarized sunglasses do more than just darken your view and block UV. Polarized sunglasses kick glare’s butt! Glare is blinding, reflected light that gets bounced off surfaces into your eye, or in this case – light that gets scattered in the rain drops. The polarization helps to eliminate the blindness caused from glare, as well as help you see further in the rain.

**Don’t know if your lenses are polarized? Check out our polarization test!

However, beware of your tint. Unless it’s a quick sun shower, the sky typically turns to a gloomy grey. Wearing too dark of a tint in that condition would lower your visibility, making it more dangerous to drive – polarized lenses or not. The ideal driving tint for medium to low sunlight is going to be above 18%. That means that 18% or more of visible light passes through the lenses, and it is suitable for conditions below very bright sunlight. If you don’t own a Spectrophotometer to measure your lenses’ exact VLT (like most of us regular folks), just use your best judgement. If the world looks too dark though your sunglasses – it probably is. 
Finally – be smart. Rain or fog that is too heavy and affects visibility too much is unsafe to drive in – sunglasses or not. Pull over anytime conditions are too bad to drive! And, as always you can ask us any questions you may have about what lenses are suitable for any activity, driving included!

Posted by Jessica in Safety, Science, 1 comment
3 Reasons to Use Sunglasses in the Winter

3 Reasons to Use Sunglasses in the Winter

 

With the colder days on their way, many people tend to hang up their favorite pair of sunglasses. It’s a common belief that sunglasses aren’t as important in winter. However, you might be surprised to learn that eye protection in the winter can be even more critical. There is certainly no chance Fuse will see any snow in sunny Florida, but this is for all our Fuse fans who are buried up in the Northern snow. Here are the top three reasons to wear sunglasses during winter:

1. For your Health

Did you know that snow reflects around 80 percent of UV light? This can make your favorite winter sports like snowboarding, ice skating, skiing, and snowman building (which I consider my favorite extreme sport) even more dangerous. We all know that our skin is an organ that can become sunburned from lengthy UV exposure, but so can our eyes! UV damage can cause intense pain, discomfort and even temporary vision loss known as snow blindness. You can even see the effects of prolonged UV exposure develop later in life in the form of lens and retina damage. The only way to protect your eyes is to wear a pair of UV protected lenses (a.k.a. sunglasses).

2. For your SanityWinter Bear

One of the most annoyingly obvious visual problems on bright days during snow season is blinding glare. Glare (or the light that is reflected off snow or other flat surfaces) is more intense and can even temporarily blind you or make objects in your vision appear to fade or disappear altogether. This is why not only regular sunglasses are so important for snow days, but also why upgrading to polarized lenses can make an even more important difference in your day! Polarized lenses not only kick glare’s butt, but also reduces eye strain and increases contrast, which makes everything look crisp and clear.

3. For your Safety

The most important feature to look for in winter sunglasses lies in the lenses. For winter sports, you always want to look for a Polycarbonate material. Unlike glass lenses that easily shatter, Polycarbonate is an impact resistant material that can take a hit! This means that you can now ask for that Red Ryder BB Gun for Christmas with confidence, without someone telling you that “you’ll shoot your eye out!”

Luckily, Fuse Lenses offers optical grade Polycarbonate lenses that are always 100% UVA/B/C protected. This means that you can trust Fuse to protect your eyes not just in winter, but all year long. Check out our vast color selection and look cool while keeping warm this winter.

Posted by Whitney in Safety, 0 comments
Get the Best Drive

Get the Best Drive

 

Getting blinded by the sun while driving isn’t just annoying, but also can be very dangerous. But, did you know that driving with the wrong sunglasses could be just as dangerous? Here are the top 3 mistakes made when choosing the perfect pair, whether it’s for your daily commute or your next road trip:

3. They are the wrong tint

If you’re a girl who ” sees the world through rose-colored glasses” – we have some bad news for you. Fashion tints in blue, pink, green, and reds can be horrible for driving. These tints distort colors, which can be especially dangerous when driving since we rely on three very important colors to let us know when we can and can’t drive. (i.e red, yellow, green) The best tints for driving are going to be either grays or browns since these colors offer enhanced contrast or true color perception.

2. They are too dark

It is possible for your sunglasses to be too dark! *gasp* The darkest tints you can get fall somewhere around 3-8% Visual Light Transmission (VLT). While these super dark sunnies are great for bright, blinding light surrounding you (maybe on a boat in the ocean or standing in the middle of a snowy field), they are a little too excessive for driving. The darkest you should go in the car should be 8% VLT. This ensures you are combatting bright light, without compromising your vision. Check out the table here for recommended VLTs for driving conditions. You can always ask us if you have any questions about VLTs of our lenses!

1. They aren’t polarized

If your glasses aren’t polarized, they aren’t blocking glare – they are just darkening. This can mean that sun glare can still get you. For days when driving toward the sun is unavoidable, make sure your driving pair of glasses is polarized – that way it actually combats glare. If you don’t want to take my word for it, check out how polarized lenses work here.

 

So, there you go! If you find yourself making any of these driving faux-pas when it comes to sunglasses, just remember that you can buy both your every day, and your driving set of lenses from Fuse! It’s literally a snap to switch them out right before your daily commute.

Posted by Jessica in Safety, 0 comments
Don’t Fry

Don’t Fry

Learn from Kim K's mistakes

Learn from Kim K‘s mistakes – Don’t just protect your eyes.

 

Friends don’t let friends make excuses for not wearing sunscreen.

Here at Fuse, we are all about eye protection. Our lenses will keep your eyes, and even the skin around your eyes, safe from all UV rays. This effectively protects you from melanoma of the eye, and other dangerous effects from sun exposure. But, what about the rest of you?

In honor of Sunscreen Day (a.k.a “Don’t Fry Day”), here are some common sunscreen excuses that you shouldn’t let damage your skin.

“A base tan protects you.”

A tan is literally your body showing its UV damage.

When cells are exposed to UV light, they start producing more melanin, the pigment that colors your skin. It is a signal that the damage has already been done. There is a slight bit of truth to this excuse – a tan does offer some protection, around a SPF equivalent of 4. But, you are better off just throwing on a T-shirt, which gives you SPF 7 protection, without the skin damage.

“I have dark skin.”

You’re still not immune to the fireball in the sky.

Our favorite sun-blocking beachcessory

Our favorite sun-blocking beachcessory

While there is a lower risk, around 30 percent of darker skinned participants in a CDC study reported having at least one sunburn in the previous year. In fact, skin cancer is often more dangerous to people of color, as it is frequently diagnosed later or misdiagnosed, making it more difficult to treat. Singer Bob Marley died from melanoma on his toe that was misdiagnosed as a soccer injury.

“It’s cloudy outside.”

This one is a big NOPE.

Anyone who has ever braved the beach sans-sunscreen on a cloudy day knows that you can still get burned. It’s estimated that around 40 percent of the sun’s rays penetrate through clouds and can even reach you through windows. In fact, I got one of my worst sunburns ever during a cloudy day on the lake.

“Your body needs Vitamin D it gets from the sun.”

If you are that worried about Vitamin D, you’re better off with supplements.

Most people do not apply sunscreen well enough to block skin from producing Vitamin D. Also, after as little as 5 minutes in the sun, your body overloads and stops production of Vitamin D, (If it didn’t, the Vitamin D would reach toxic levels!) Furthermore, tanned doesn’t equate to healthy, even in Vitamin D levels. Studies of Hawaiian surfers found that even though all participants were tanned, many were Vitamin D deficient.

“I put some on this morning.”

You’re not good.

Most people do not use enough sunscreen to stay safe. In fact, SPF 50 protection often winds up more like SPF 20 because of our inability to use it correctly. This is why many people still do get tanned with even higher SPF sunscreens. For most adults, one ounce (about a shot glass) of sunscreen is needed. Allow sunscreen 15 minutes to soak in before stepping out into the sun’s rays. Sunscreen should also be re-applied every two hours. Even sunscreen that boasts “all day protection” or “sweat/water-proof” needs to be reapplied. Waterproof sunscreens start to lose effectiveness after around 40 minutes of perspiring or swimming.

Sun Basking

The sun isn’t always a bad thing.

“I covered my face.”

But what about the rest of you?!

Many people will regularly coat their face in sunscreen, my guess is to fight signs of aging caused by the sun on the most noticeable part of your body. However, the sun ages you everywhere! Furthermore, cancer develops everywhere. Even beyond commonly coated areas like the legs, arms, and back. Many patients have developed skin cancer on their scalps, ears, lips, tops of their feet, back of their hands and so on. Anywhere that is exposed to the sun is in danger.

“Sunscreen causes cancer!”

I guarantee not wearing sunscreen causes more cancer, though.

The studies that produced the findings that bred the idea of sunscreen causing cancer exposed rats to sunscreen at unrealistic levels. If, everyday, you applied SPF 30 sunscreen liberally to your whole body, it would take around 35 years to reach the levels of exposure the rats experienced over the course of the experiment.

Furthermore, with tens of millions of people wearing all different kinds of sunscreen across the world, we would know if there was a mass sunscreen-induced cancer breakout by now.

If you are iffy about your sunscreen: always check expiration dates and ingredients, wear chemical free UPF rated clothing, and stay out of the sun at peak hours (about 10am to 4pm).

 

 

No matter what your excuse is, don’t let it stop you from protecting yourself. Skin Cancer might not seem like a big deal, but it definitely can become one. Stay safe on your sunny adventures!

Read More: Skin Cancer Foundation

Posted by Jessica in Safety, 0 comments