I’ve always been a pretty major sunglass enthusiast, but I’m embarrassed to admit that my collection hasn’t always been the most health conscious one. It more closely resembled Elton John’s collection of 1000 fashion-conscious pairs than the stock at my opticians office. It wasn’t until I recently had a little bit of a cataract scare that I made a big change. UV rays, those invisible to the human eye, are very dangerous to vision health, aggravating eye growth and causing cataracts and macular degeneration.
As it turns out, however, there are sunglasses that can combat it. Polarized lenses diminish the glare of the sun, promoting clearer vision for outdoor sports and driving while protecting the eyes from harmful UV rays. I recently bought polarized replacement lenses for a few of my favorite pairs, and I’m so glad I did.
So how do polarized lenses reduce glare? It’s pretty basic. Polarized lenses have filters that block horizontally oriented reflected light. As such, glare is drastically reduced. If the lenses filtered vertically oriented light as well, it would be impossible to see through them.
Anyway, I bought replacement polarized lenses for three of my favorite pairs, and it turns out the replacing sunglass lenses isn’t all that difficult. I ordered the polarized replacement lenses from a company that sells high quality aftermarket sunglass lenses and elected to do the actual sunglass lens replacement myself. I had one pair of Ray-Ban Wayfarers, one pair of Ray-Ban Clubmasters, and one pair of Oakley aviators.
The polarized replacement lenses were much easier to install in the Clubmasters and the aviators because of their wire frames. I just had to loosen the screws holding the frames together and swap out the lenses. For the Wayfarers, I had a little more trouble. I tried soaking them in hot soapy water, but I still couldn’t get the old lenses to budge, so I ended up breaking them with a small mallet. The polarized replacement lenses went in with a fair bit of trouble, but they ended up fitting just fine. If I were going to do it again, I would have sent the Wayfarers in to have the company replace the lenses for me.
The polarized lenses have been great, especially since the snow up here in Western New York produces a pretty substantial amount of glare. It’s nice to have better visibility and to know that my eyes are better protected. In the future, I’ll just buy polarized lenses from the beginning, but the lens replacement was a great option for fixing up my old favorites. See more: Ray ban replacement lenses