TL;DR: I just bought a pair of the best blue light blocking glasses, and they actually work. Without them, I get headaches. When I wear them, I don’t. It’s as simple as that.
Click here to skip everything and just buy a pair. You’ll thank me. Otherwise read on to discover why I bought a pair of Gunnar’s (arguably the best blue light blocking glasses I could find).
Otherwise read on to discover why I bought a pair of Gunnar’s (arguably the best blue light blocking glasses I could find).
Forget bad posture from hunching over your laptop all day.
Tired eyes are the killer. Oh and the headaches.
And it’s something far too many digital nomads face. Because, come on. Whilst your family thinks you’re on a luxury trip around the world, you know you’re on your laptop all day. It’s just not really exciting to talk about the endless amount of hours you spend staring into your computer screen. Or your smartphone.
Like me. I’m on my computer for about 10 hours a day. Then there’ll be a few more hours spent browsing reddit, Facebook, YouTube and everything else that comes up when you go down that rabbit hole.
Hence the problem.
I started to notice my vision was getting bad mid last year. A scary thing after having 20/20 my entire life. But things in the distance were getting just a little harder to focus on. Words that I ordinarily would have been able to read were fuzzy. Plus the headaches. I thought it was from caffdeprivationation as I’ve been cutting back, but even drinking more didn’t help.
So I went to the doctor. Optometrist. Whatever. The eye tests all came back with the same results, 20/20 vision, but the doc almost fell over when he found out just how long I was sitting in front of my computer. My problem, he said, was that I was straining my eyes.
And that’s a very bad thing. Too much staring into a screen and you’ll get computer vision syndrome.
Computer vision syndrome is bad
In short, if you’re spending too long looking at your computer, and feeling headaches and eyestrain, blurry vision or tired eyes, you’ve got computer vision syndrome.
There’s some horrifying statistics out there. The National Institute of Occupational Health and Safety found that of the people spending 3 hours or more on a computer each day, 90 percent experience some form of fatigue or strain.
Now back to the doc’s advice, he told me to simply avoid straining my eyes. I was given a pack of eye drops (which did help), but the gist of it was to spend less time on my computer to stop the blue light from the screen hurting my eyes even more.
If I had a choice, I would have listened. Of course you could cut back if you’re online playing video games or watching cat videos. But when it’s your job, it’s kind of impossible.
So I did the next best thing (ironically back on my computer).
Google “how to relieve eyestrain”
Here’s the condensed version of the advice I found:
- Take breaks and go do something away from your computer. Like making a coffee.
- Use an app to remind you when you’ve been at your desk too long. Like Awareness.
- Every 20 mins focus on something 20 ft away for 20 seconds. Just look away from your screen.
But I did stumble across a neat little app that promised to help. It’s called Flux.
Once you set it up, it works by changing the “warmth” of your screen during the day. Gradually adjusting the colors so that as the day progresses, (and the sun sets), your screen is at the warmer end of the spectrum and you’re not getting hit with all the blue light that can strain your eyes.
Just don’t download it and set it up at night, it’s too much of a change. Instead, install it on your computer in the morning so it can slowly transition throughout the day. You’ll hardly notice the changes.
Now I followed these steps for about a week, but I could still feel my eyes weren’t happy. Plus, the color changes from flux were impacting my work. You can’t use this app if you’re designing in photoshop as it sends all the colors to a weird end of the spectrum.
So I got back on google, as I remembered coming across a handful of websites claiming to have the best blue light blocking glasses when I was researching eyestrain.
Which brought me to Gunnar. And right back into the nineties.
I mean, come on. They’re selling yellow-tinted glasses that look more suited for an extra in the movie Hackers than something you could actually wear in public.
But then I started reading the reviews.
It was a mixed bag, people either love them or hate them, and I have to say I was intrigued. The glasses work by blocking a particular part of the spectrum, stopping the blue light, glare and UV from reaching your eyes.
By turning everything yellow.
I would hate seeing the world with a horrible yellow tint, and there was no way I’d be able to pull off a pair of these gaming glasses when I’m working at my local coworking space. You’d stick out like a moron.
And then I saw their crystalline line. Totally clear lenses.
They look, for the most part, just like a normal pair of glasses. Because the lenses are clear. And they’re a little bit stylish too. I’ve had a couple of people ask me where I bought mine, because they actually look good. You can buy the pair I’m wearing (as I type this) here.
I’ve been wearing my blue light blocking glasses for about a month, and they work. Hence why I want to share my experience with all of you. I’m just amazed.
Best parts about blue light blocking glasses
The lenses are clear, allowing you to get what Gunnar calls “true color.” According to what I discovered it also means the lenses don’t block quite as much of the blue spectrum as yellow lenses would, but you also don’t look like a hardcore gamer either. It’s the best of both worlds.
On my face the frames sit perfectly which was a pleasant surprise. I normally suck at finding a good pair of sunglasses that suit my face. I was suitably impressed at how stylish these frames are, they’re almost like sunglasses, not a boring pair of glasses. You’ve also got options like this, this and this.
You can also use these glasses if you’re a gamer or spending long hours in front of the television. It’s the same concept. Stop the blue light from getting into your eyes, and you’ll feel a thousand percent better after an all-nighter playing Call of Duty.
Oh and they’re quite low profile which means that even wearing headphones you don’t notice you’ve still got the glasses on. There’s no weirdness pressing into the sides of your skull, whether you’ve got a headset for your job or are yelling at teenagers over Xbox live.
All up, when I wear these glasses, I no longer get eyestrain. Or headaches. Even after pulling a 16 hour night of coding. It’s completely blown my mine just how good these things are. The best blue light blocking glasses. If you haven’t yet bought a pair, click here and get yours now. I am simply amazed.
Negatives of blue light blocking glasses
There’s a slight magnification that was initially a bit weird. I asked for no prescription but the lenses come with a very slight one (I’m guessing 1-2%), kind of like what you’d expect in a pair of reading glasses. For some people, this could actually cause your eyes to strain more, but for me it turned out to be exactly what I needed.
The frames are so light it does make them feel a little flimsy. Delicate even. You can’t throw them around like you would a pair of sunglasses, but then you do have some choices for thicker frames, so it’s up to you. I’d probably reorder the same ones I bought if I need to get another pair anyway.
You also need to take really good care of your glasses. I’m not used to wearing frames all day, so at first I was constantly readjusting them on my face. Which lead to an obscene amount of fingerprints on the lenses. Maybe that’s my fault for fiddling too much, but I did feel the lenses get dirty quicker than a pair of sunglasses would.
Why I got the best blue light blocking glasses
Ultimately it came down to my eyes. I’m rather fond of being able to see clearly, and for a bit under $100 the pair I bought was less than what I usually spend on sunglasses so I just thought, “what the hell.”
I tend to make impulse buys like that.
I also really liked how they just look like a stylish pair of glasses (because there’s no yellow tint). I’ve not had a single person say a bad thing about them. I guess the people I work around thought I just stopped wearing contacts and switched to frames.
Would I recommend blue light blocking glasses to a friend?
Yes. A thousand times yes. In my experience, they work. And work well.
It used to be the case that by the end of a workday I was done. Completely buggered. My eyes were tired. I’d have a slight headache, and just not feeling good. Which also puts a damper on life. You don’t head out and catch up with your friends when all you want to do is lie down on a Friday night and shut your eyes.
But I’ve got to be totally honest. I was surprised these glasses actually worked.
After I ordered them I slept on it, and thought. What the heck did I just do. This has got to be a scam. What the hell is blue light anyway? I’ve just been suckered into something I’ll regret. I was annoyed for a couple of days. Then completely forgot about it. Well, until they turned up a week later.
I really wanted them to fail. It makes for a funnier story about money wasted on yet another silly toy, and to be honest I was all geared up to write a scathing review.
But I stand corrected.
They’re the best blue light blocking glasses I own (full disclosure, at this point I only have one pair). And my eyes feel great. Even as I’m writing this up at the end of another long day on my laptop.
I’ve also recommended these glasses in person to a couple of friends. Friends who spend as much time on the computer as I do. And they love them too.
In my experience, these glasses do successfully protect against computer vision syndrome.
If you’re working at a job that needs you to stare at a screen all day, you’ve got to take care of your eyes. So buy the best damn blue light blocking glasses ever. Click here to check the price and buy a pair of your own.
I’d also love to hear your experience. Has anyone used a different brand or had different results? Did they help with your eye strain? Let me know.
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