Glasses that are designed to be worn under their lens to protect against sunburn are becoming more common, with more than 1 billion glasses sold worldwide.
The U.S. and Europe are the most popular markets for glasses in Europe, with China, Japan and India accounting for the most sales, according to the American Optometric Association.
“In the past 10 years, there has been a tremendous increase in the number of people wearing glasses with UV protection, which can help prevent the formation of sunburn,” said Scott Smith, senior product manager at O2 Optics, a U.K.-based optical company.
“There’s a great deal of concern about UV damage to the human eye,” he said.
O2 Optica has launched a line of UV protective glasses that it calls “Glassy” to help people avoid sunburn.
“Our glasses have been designed to keep the lens out of the sunburn-prone areas of the eye, so you can see clearly in the dark and have less sunburn in the day,” Smith said.
Smith says the company is working with more manufacturers to develop products with UV-blocking technology.
O3 Glass is making sunglasses for children and seniors that are specifically designed for the elderly and those who are blind.
It has sold more than 6 million glasses in the U.W.S., Canada and Europe, Smith said, and plans to launch in China this year.
“Our customers who are looking for a high-quality UV-blockable UV protection glasses for their eye care are getting more and more options,” Smith added.
For the blind and visually impaired, the glasses are designed so they won’t get burned by the UV rays.
They’re also designed for people with visual impairments, such as hearing or speech impairment.
In an effort to make the glasses more accessible to the blind, O3 is offering a discount of $100 to people who opt for glasses made of polyurethane foam.
It’s a durable material that has an elastic-like texture that can be used to protect the eye.
“O3 is a leading supplier of high-tech UV protection to our customers in the UK and Europe,” said Mark Todman, senior director of marketing and communications at O3.
“We believe that by introducing a premium UV-protecting lens for the blind it can help the UK, and hopefully other countries, to reduce the risk of UV-induced eye damage and blindness,” he added.
Smith said O3 hopes to see more manufacturers start producing glasses with this technology.
“With a higher demand for sunglasses with UV protective properties, we see potential for new products to be developed with the goal of reducing the risk and improving vision for blind and vision-impaired customers,” he noted.
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