Which Sunglasses Are Better: Polarized or Gradient Lenses?

There are several sunglass options to fit your unique demands when it comes to successfully covering your eyes from the sun, including polarized and gradient lenses. So, what is the difference between gradient and polarized sunglasses?

Gradient lenses have a progressive transition in tint from (usually) darker at the top to lighter at the bottom, whereas polarized sunglasses have a laminate filter that decreases glare and reduces eye strain.

Let us look at the primary differences between polarized and gradient sunglasses and see which one will work best for you before you go out and buy a new pair.


Gradient Vs. Polarized Lenses

Although both polarized and gradient lenses have their advantages, there are times when you will want to choose one over the other.

Here are a few important items to remember:

Environment: Polarized sunglasses are perfect for glare-prone environments including water, snow, and concrete. Gradient lenses, which block more glare from above, may be preferred for driving in the afternoon light and during the day.

UV protection: Because neither lens coating is better than the other at blocking the sun’s harmful UV rays, search for UV400 protection, as nothing is more vital in sunwear than protecting your vision.

Cost: Although the price varies by style and brand, polarized lenses are more expensive than gradient lenses.

Availability: Designer sunglasses with polarized and gradient lenses are available with or without a prescription.

Versatility: Gradient lenses are more adaptable than polarized lenses, which can be excessively dark in some situations.

polarized or gradient lenses

How Do Polarized Lenses Function?

When polarized sunglasses are made, a vertically patterned chemical laminate is put to the lenses. When sunlight strikes flat surfaces, the reflected light beams flow horizontally, increasing glare and decreasing vision.

Because horizontal rays cannot pass through the vertical laminate pattern, polarized sunglasses, like window blinds, prevent them.

Polarized lenses are a wonderful choice for anyone who enjoys outdoor activities, especially around water and other glare-prone surfaces, because they provide superior glare prevention.

Harsh glare is reduced and image details are easier to see when wearing polarized performance sunglasses. There are instances, though, when polarized lenses are not the greatest choice. Polarized glasses, for example, can make it difficult to see LCD panels, such as those found in automobile dashboards.

Polarized lenses can also clash with some windshield tints, making them unsuitable for driving sunglasses. In low-light circumstances, the darker polarized lenses may cause eye strain.

When participating in high-light outdoor activities, polarized sunglasses are recommended. Even yet, there are some situations where gradient sunglasses are a superior option.

polarized or gradient lenses

What Are Gradient Lenses and How Do They Work?

Gradient lenses have a tint that fades from the top to the bottom, with the darkest section at the top gradually fading until there is no tint at all.

There are also lenses with a deeper tint at the top and bottom and a lighter tint in the middle, known as double gradient lenses. There are also double- and triple-gradient lenses, which fade from one color to another rather than just from dark to light.

Gradient lenses are frequently the best choice for driving and time spent in overhead daylight, as the lenses shield from the top while still allowing you to see well through the middle. Polarized lenses are excellent for bright, high-glare activities.

If you find that some polarized sunglasses are excessively dark, double-gradient lenses can protect your eyes from bright light and other reflective surfaces on the ground while allowing you to see through the middle of the lenses with less distortion.

The best polarized lenses have the laminate put between layers of the lens, but less expensive models only have the laminate on the back or front, making them more sensitive to wear and tear.

polarized or gradient lenses

Is It True That Polarized Lenses Provide Better Uv Protection?

While polarized lenses are the greatest choice for reducing glare and eye fatigue, they do not shield your eyes from damaging UV rays.

To get the most out of your sunglasses, make sure they’re 100% UV protected, whether polarized or not.

While polarized lenses have become synonymous with high-quality sunglasses, doing your study before purchasing is always a smart idea, as not all polarized lenses are created equal.

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