What is the Difference Between Polarized and Mirrored Sunglasses?

It is a confusing ordeal when purchasing  safety sunglasses. You are standing in front of a display and they all look the same. Some have labels on them that read “polarized lenses” and others “mirrored lenses.” Many of you are probably asking, “What’s the difference between polarized and mirrored safety sunglasses?”

Polarized Lenses

Polarized lenses are designed with a special coating applied between two halves of the lens to prevent cracking and peeling. The coating is applied vertically to reflect or block 99.9% of horizontally polarized light. You see, reflected light is generally horizontally polarized and the vertical positioning of the coating acts to block or reflect it.

Wiley X Polarized Safety Sunglasses

Features and Benefits of Polarized Lenses

Polarized lenses reduce the occurrence of eyestrain. This is caused by the need to squint in the presence of bright light. Extended periods of squinting have the potential to cause damage to your eyes as well as severe headache. Safety sunglasses with polarized lenses are an ideal solution for those people whose eyes are light sensitive. The polarized coating makes life easier for dealing with light sensitivity. Glare is significantly reduced by 99.9% preventing eyestrain from occurring. Polarized safety sunglasses may be worn inside for tasks such as working at a computer.

Another fantastic feature of polarized lenses is they do not distort colors or clarity. For example, anglers have been enthusiastic fans since they give them the ability to see fish in the water. Not only are these lenses popular with anglers, but also laborers who work outdoors, people who experience light sensitivity, and outdoor sports enthusiasts. Seeing as the polarized coating does not distort colors or clarity, you can wear sunglasses as if you were not wearing them at all.

Polarized sunglasses are also great for reducing the chance of accidents while driving. This type of lens assists while driving, because there is no distortion of color or clarity, which is particularly helpful in being able to see traffic light colors. Many sunglasses have the ability to distort colors and therefore you may mistake the traffic light being the appropriate color. Another way this feature benefits you is the reduction of glare on the road, your hood, or any other highly reflective surface. Glare from your hood, the road, or other reflective surfaces can blind you and cause an accident. Polarized lenses can significantly reduce the chances of accidents by blocking or reflecting the light allowing you to see fully while driving.

Lenses with a polarized coating are also scratch resistant, unlike their mirrored counterparts. You may be wondering how these lenses can be scratch resistant with a coating on them and the answer is pure genius. Polarized sunglasses have scratch resistant lenses compliments of the method of coating application. The polarized coating is applied between two halves of the lens significantly reducing the chance of scratches and peeling.

Mirrored Lenses

Mirrored lenses are made with a reflective coating (also called flash coating) applied to the outside of dark lenses to reflect bright light. The mirrored coating is created by bonding a thin layer of vaporized metal to the surface of the lens. It reduces the amount of glare, but not the ultraviolet light.

Features and Benefits of Mirrored Lenses

A unique attribute to mirrored sunglasses is the person wearing them does not view the world in the color of the lens. It is an interesting phenomenon seeing as the coating is applied over a dark lens to start with. Only the person looking at the mirrored lenses sees the color.

Crews Mirrored Safety Sunglasses

The mirrored coating is simply for cosmetic purposes in a rainbow of colors as well as silver, gold, and copper metallic. It acts as a one-way mirror allowing you to see them and they cannot see you. Hence the name, mirrored sunglasses.

Mirrored sunglasses are great for being in the sun for extended periods of time. In spite of the fact that mirrored lenses do not provide ultraviolet light protection, there is still is good glare reduction. Granted the glare reduction is not as good as that of polarized, but anything is better than nothing.

Now that you are an informed consumer, go out and find the  safety sunglasses that are right for you. Be careful and enjoy the sun!

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