Sunglasses and surfing go hand in hand. Seeing clearly while surfing is absolutely essential—from watching a set come in to viewing the perfect line down the face of a powerful wave.
Is It Beneficial to Wear Sunglasses While Surfing?
The primary eyesight obstacle in surfing is “surfer’s eye.” Otherwise known as pterygium, a surfer's eye is characterized by a pink, fleshy, wedge-shaped growth on the white part of the eyeball. In severe cases, surfer’s eye can cover the cornea and pupil, which results in blurred vision. Symptoms can cause redness and irritation as well as an itchy, gritty and/or burning sensation.
Extensive exposure to ultraviolet light, along with irritants such as sand and wind along with dry-eye syndrome can each lead to pterygium. While a surfer's eye is generally benign and treatable, it can lead to more severe vision problems in the future. So if incorporating sunglasses while surfing is an option, why not take it? Increase your cool points while protecting your eyes. Win-win.
Surfing Sunglass Styles
We recommend selecting sunglasses that block 90 to 100 percent of ultraviolet light and wear them every day—even amid overcast conditions. Sunglasses can also provide protection from irritants such as sand, dust and/or wind. We also caution against the sun’s powerful glare, in terms of eye fatigue and strain from squinting—further underscoring the necessity of surfing sunglass styles.
Further differentiating them from other styles, sunglasses for surfers include several key features. While metal frames can become too heavy, lightweight plastic frames can break easily. The solution: frames crafted in silicone material for flexibility and durability. Since surfing mandates wearing sunglasses for extended periods of time, comfort is essential; select a pair with nose pads, along with adjustability and a strap to help keep them securely in place. Floatable frames prevent sinking in the ocean should they fall off.
Polarized Sunglasses for Surfers
Polarized lenses are great for optimal UV protection and color performance outdoors. A selection of surf sunglasses feature oversized lenses for broader overall vision; other styles leverage peripheral vision, letting surfers view an entire 180-degree line of sight. In terms of reducing glare and ensuring long-range vision, polarized lenses are ideally suited for surfing sunglasses. Another surf-specific option are mirrored lenses, which reduce brightness and block up to 60% more visible light. In addition, smoke lenses help reduce overall brightness and provide maximum clarity in bright sun. Amber lenses offer increased contrast, helping surfers differentiate darker waters from blue skies; they also sharpen vision on overcast days.
Given the vigorous nature of surfing, lens strength is also critical, so look for both impact- and scratch-resistant styles. As well, anti-fogging ventilation is paramount for surf-specific sunglasses, since fogged lenses obstruct views of oncoming waves.
Blenders Eyewear offers a wide selection of surfing sunglasses, perfect for the next time you’re ready to catch a wave. No what else is rad? We offer a collection of floating sunglasses, made for those who spend a majority of their time in body’s of water.