Everything You Need to Know About Reflective Sunglasses
Reflective sunglasses feature a reflective optical coating, sometimes called a flash coating or mirror coating, on the outside of the lens. This reflective coating gives your sunglasses the appearance of small mirrors, a feature that not only looks great but has major functional benefits.
Mirror coating reflects more light than your average tinted lens, so they are particularly useful in environments where there can be a lot of light bouncing into the eye from a number of surfaces, such as water or snow. For this reason, reflective sunglasses have become popular within the extreme sports community and with a variety of other outdoor enthusiasts.
The mirror coating is comprised of alternating layers of metallic conductors and dielectric insulators. This coating is fused to the lens at a molecular level, and the thickness of the insulating layer determines the properties of the resulting mirror. It is important to note that the color of the mirror coating that you choose is purely an aesthetic decision, and does not affect the tint of the lens itself. For example, if you choose an electric blue mirror coating, that doesn’t mean that you will constantly be seeing the world in electric blue!
Reflective lenses reduce sun glare while maintaining a strong color contrast, so your vision remains clear and crisp. Additionally, the mirror coating means that your eyes will not be visible through any reflective lenses.
When to wear mirrored sunglasses
Mirrored sunglasses have become popular with snow and water sports enthusiasts, who use them to minimize strong glare, not only from the sun itself, but from the surrounding environment. Beyond this, mirrored sunglasses have also become a popular fashion accessory because of their fun colors and ability to add a bit of edge to any outfit.
One important distinction between the different types of mirrored sunglasses is the frame type and whether they are wrapped or non-wrapped. The difference is that wrapped sunglasses are made to wrap closely around the face, which allows the lenses to block sunlight coming in from any angle. This close fit means that the sunglasses are more stable on the face and give a wider range of protection, making them an ideal choice for athletes and people with active lifestyles. Some of the most popular brands for wrapped models include Nike, Sinner and Oakley.
Meanwhile, classic lifestyle frames such as Oakley Frogskins or Ray-Ban Folding Wayfarer sunglasses are non-wrapped, and therefore, they will let in light from the side like normal sunglasses. As a result, non-wrapped frames are more suitable for fashion-wear rather than sports-wear.
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