How to Choose the Healthiest Pair of Sunglasses

Your shades do more than just make you look cool; they're essential for protecting eye health year-round. If you're in the market for a new pair this summer, keep in mind these shopping parameters from the experts.

The Lens
Look for a UV protection rating of 400, and get darker shades if your eyes are light-sensitive, says Andrea Thau, M.D., spokesperson for the American Optometric Association. Shatterproof polycarbonate plastic is inherently protective, and gray lenses distort color the least.

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The Bridge
Glasses should rest between your brow and cheekbones, says Gail Royal, M.D., of the American Academy of Ophthalmology. So if you've got a narrow nasal bridge, opt for nose pads.

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The Fit
The lenses should cover your eyes and the delicate skin around them. Pick frames that are as wide as your face, with a snug (but not tight) fit behind the ears.

The Frame
Sweat, makeup, and sunblock can cause chemical reactions in frames that contain nickel. Look for high-quality metals such as titanium, or choose plastic.

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