From their early origins as a means of concealing eye expressions in Chinese courts, sunglasses have become the ultimate fashion accessory.
According to eye care experts at IRIS The Visual Group, the best choice depends on factors like lifestyle, face shape and overall eye health.
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Taking inspiration from its newest model and style icon, Kim Cattrall, IRIS offers the following sunglass shopping checklist:
Consider your lifestyle: Do you need sunglasses for function or fashion?
Frames made of light weight materials like titanium and polycarbonate are great for everyday use. People who spend time on the water will benefit from polarized lenses to reduce glare, while avid golfers, trail runners and mountain bikers should consider photochromic lenses instead, as they darken in response t o light intensity.
Test the fit: When it comes to sunglasses, one size definitely does not fit all, so try on different pairs before buying.
“Fit is very important — how sunglasses feel on the nose and in the back of the ears,” says Cattrall. “I might really love the look of them, but I won't wear them as much if the fit isn't there.”
Ask about UV protection: Exposure to UV rays increases the risk of macular degeneration and cataracts, as well as cancers and growths on the eye and eyelids.
Look for sunglasses that offer a UV protection rate of 100 per cent.
Look for variety: If you plan to be at the beach or in a boat, look for sunglasses that wrap all the way around the temples to block all light coming in, among other things.
Cattrall says, “I love the big Jackie O sunglasses.
“If you've had a long night or an early morning, they hide a multitude of sins.”
More information about sun protection for the eyes is available online at iris.ca.