This post is NOT sponsored and is my unbiased, independent review.
Anyone else heard people talk about blue light glasses recently and feel truly un-curious? That was me up until recently! I don’t have any problems with my eyes–not even a little eyestrain after staring at a computer screen all day–so I really didn’t see the point in being interested. That is, until I learned about the negative effects of blue light.
I’ve had more time on my hands the past few months due to the COVID-19 pandemic. I’ve been seeing people post about blue light glasses for a couple of years now, but I was finally bored enough one day that I decided to get curious after seeing an influencer post about a new pair.
What I learned prompted me to get to work searching for a pair. I was able to find several ethical/sustainable brands and even did a home try-on of several pairs! I’ve got all the details and photos below.
What the Heck is Blue Light and Why do We Need Glasses for It?
Blue light is one form of visible light. Light that looks white (sunlight, light from screens, etc.) has a large blue component.
A moderate amount of blue light exposure is okay. We actually need this exposure in order to regulate our circadian rhythm, boost alertness, and regulate mood. However, too much blue light exposure through our eyes can disrupt our circadian rhythms, strain our eyes, and cause damage to our retina. Damage to retinal cells can lead to macular degeneration…in other words, blindness. Yikes!
We all know that it’s important to wear sunglasses to protect our eyes from the sun, but many of us don’t think about the impact of the light from computer screens, cell phones, fluorescent lights, etc. That’s where blue light glasses come in: They help block harmful blue light rays from the light sources around us.
I decided that any chance of macular degeneration is too much for me. I wanted a pair of blue light glasses, stat!
Ethically Made Blue Light Glasses
You can buy blue light glasses pretty much anywhere these days. However, I knew I didn’t want a $5 pair from Amazon Fashion that was made by underpaid workers out of cheap plastic. I set out to find an ethical brand that was making high quality glasses that would last (because I’m not trying to buy another pair….like ever, if I can help it). I knew I likely wouldn’t find a perfectly fair trade and sustainable brand, but I wanted one that could demonstrate at least some sort of ethical/eco/give-a-crap-about-anyone element.
With a bit of Google searching and the help of some friends, I found the following brands:
DIFF’s glasses are made in a socially responsible way, and they partner with nonprofit Sightsavers to provide eye exams, medications, surgery, and glasses to those in need.
Online marketplace Earth Hero carries blue light glasses by Parafina. (At the time of this publication, they appear to be sold out, but hopefully they will restock soon!) Parafina’s glasses are made from eco-friendly materials.
Warby Parker has a transparent supply chain, with glasses manufactured at a family-run factory in Italy. They use organic pigments to color their glasses. And with each purchase, they also give a pair of glasses to someone in need.
I ultimately decided to go with Warby Parker for the reasons above, and because they give you the ability to try on glasses before purchasing. I don’t wear prescription glasses and had no idea what would actually look good on my face. I really struggle to find sunglasses that I like once on, so I knew I’d want to try on blue light frames before shelling out big bucks.
For those of you who do wear prescription lenses, Warby Parker is an awesome choice because you can add blue light protection to your prescription lenses. And apparently their frames are less expensive than most prescription options.
UPDATE: Since I originally published this post, one of my absolute favorite sustainable brands, Pela, has begun selling blue light glasses! Their glasses are actually biodegradable, and you also have the option of mailing them back to Pela for upcycling once you can no longer use them. I love this closed loop production system and definitely plan to try out Pela the next time I need to purchase a pair of blue light glasses!
Trying on Glasses Virtually and at Home
I felt a little lost at first about what types of frames to even request for my try on. I literally Googled the phrase “what shape glasses for my face.”
This proved a very fruitful thing to do. I discovered that I have a heart shaped face. Because of this, I wanted to avoid “top heavy” frames that would just emphasize my wide forehead. I also discovered that I have a rather narrow face and might want to try narrow width glasses if possible.
Even with that little bit of guidance to get me on the right track, there were so many options. I was thrilled to discover that Warby Parker has a way to virtually try on their frames! I downloaded the app and had fun trying on different pairs.
Of course, I still wanted to try them on in person first before buying. I used the virtual try-on to help me narrow down to a handful of favorites, which I then ordered for home try-on. With home try-on, Warby Parker mails you up to five pairs of frames to try on and then ship back to them within five days–at no charge!
After placing the order for my home try-on kit, the glasses came quickly–within days! I had selected four regular frames and one sunglasses frame just for fun. Here they are:
My favorite pair was the Daisy, size narrow, in color Oak Barrel. This was actually my favorite from the virtual try-on too, proving that it’s a pretty effective tool!
Less than two days after placing my order for the glasses, they are already on their way to me. I am excited to start wearing them and protect my eyes from the negative effects of blue light! My experience with Warby Parker has been excellent, and I highly recommend them if you’re in the market for glasses of any kind!
P.S. – This post contains affiliate links, which means I may receive a small commission (at no cost to you) if you purchase a product using a link from this post. Read more here about my disclaimers/disclosures.