Warm nights, long days, and cool shades! Summer is the time of year when rolling out designer sunglasses is common practice—the rays are much more intense, so we have more reason to wear sunglasses for longer periods of time.
They help to protect our eyes from harmful rays, such as UVA and UVB, and they make a wicked fashion statement.
But there’s a lot about sunglasses we probably aren’t aware of. After all, if glasses are an old invention, then sunglasses must be ancient, as well. And how do they even work?
Here’s four fun facts about sunglasses for you!
- Sunglasses were originally invented by the Chinese. Back in the 1100s, they would use the tinted material to block the sun’s rays. They would also use them in courts to block out their expressions so they wouldn’t be as easy to decipher. But surprisingly, the concept is much older than this. They were originally designed by a native Alaskan tribe as a type of “snow goggles” to reduce the reflective light from the snow.
- If you weren’t aware before, Elton John is a massive fan of sunglasses. It’s rumored he has enough pairs to hold a world record! He always has a pair nearby. In fact, there is a play inspired by his love for sunglasses titled “Elton John’s Glasses.” If you’re an Elton John fan, check out the play, as it might be of interest to you.
- Most sunglasses are polarized. What exactly does this mean? Well, polarized lenses have a filter within them that blocks light that is coming to our eyes in a concentrated way. That’s why it generally seems dimmer when we wear our sunglasses. The light is blocked from reaching our eyes, so there is less glare and fewer intense rays coming at us.
- Sometimes, sunglasses can make it more difficult (or near impossible) to read screens that are either LCD or LED. These include things such as TVs, cell phones, and some electric bulletin boards. The polarization on the lenses makes it more difficult for our eyes to see the screen because the light is being absorbed by the lenses rather than passing through to our eyes. If you have problems reading on a screen with sunglasses, the best solution is to take them off!