Often we forget that the main job of our sunglasses is to protect our eyes from the sun’s harmful UV rays, so when choosing a pair of summer sunnies safety often takes a backseat to style. However in the sun we need to protect not only our skin from harmful UV radiation but also our eyes-because they are pretty useful after all. So how do we do this? With UV400 protection of course.
Sunglasses are often described as having ‘100% UV protection’ or ‘full UV400 protection’, but what does this actually mean to us? Well, in a nutshell, it means that with a pair of UV400 protection sunglasses your eyes are protected from 100% of UV light rays with wavelengths of up to 400nm – hence the 400 part.
But let’s be more specific and get down to the technicalities of the sun’s rays. We all know the sun emits harmful UV light rays, but these rays can be split into three different categories – UVA, UVB and UVC. We don’t need to worry about UVC rays, as these are blocked before they reach the Earth’s atmosphere, however UVA and UVB rays pose a real danger.
UVA rays are the most common, with wavelengths of 320-400nm, and make up around 95% of the UV radiation that reaches the Earth’s surface. These rays are proven to be responsible for skin aging, wrinkling and just recently found to be a contributor to skin cancer. UVA rays are definitely not “safe”, but their effects are seen over a longer time period compared to the almost instant effects of the dangerous UVB rays. UVB rays are the primary cause of skin reddening and nasty sunburns, and yes if they are able to burn your skin then they are just as able to burn your eyes. UVB rays are far less frequent with wavelengths of 290-320nm, but they far more dangerous leading to cataracts and corneal sunburn.
However all this doom and gloom can be avoided simply by wearing a pair of sunglasses with UV400 protection, and you’re in luck because all our Breo sunglasses offer UV400 protection so you are able to keep the rays away in style knowing your eyes are fully protecting from anything the sun can throw at you.