Choosing the right glasses for summer

Harry The Optometrist

Written by Harry


With the change of seasons comes a revision of our wardrobes, hairstyles and cosmetics. One thing
that glasses wearers tend to overlook however is their eyewear – both corrective glasses and sunglasses can be customised to accommodate for warmer weather.

When choosing a reliable pair of glasses for the summer, speak to your optometrist and have the
following considerations in mind.

Sunglasses and other UVA/UVB protection

A pair of Ray-Ban glasses may seem like a worthy investment, but outside of the quality of the brand, you should also consider the amount of protection your shades or eye glasses provide.

When buying sunglasses, look out for the label – a reliable pair will protect from 99-100 per cent of UVA and UVB rays. If you see labelling such as “UV 400”, this means that the glasses protect from wavelengths up to 400 nano metres.

Physical activity

Summer is invariably a time of increased activity, from longer dog walks to outdoor sports and water-based activities.

These can all pose a challenge for glasses wearers – at the top end of the scale, there are options such as prescription sports glasses or running sunglasses, which have an aerodynamic design and almost resemble goggles in appearance.

For smaller budgets, consider getting your glasses re-tightened to minimise movement, or investing in a glasses chain for reading glasses. If you’ve never tried contact lenses before, now may be the time to organise a trial, particularly if prescription sunglasses are too pricy.

Lens types


Sunglasses use what’s known as polarised lenses, which means that they are permanently tinted dark. Spectacles, on the other hand, do not provide protection unless they are photocromic or “transition” lenses. These have a reactive coating which changes in response to the light conditions, protecting against 100 per cent of UVA and UVB rays.


These lenses start to show wear after around three years, so keep an eye out for a yellow tinge if you are looking to replace them.

Maui jim sunglasses



Increased temperature and physical activity can make eyewear uncomfortable if you have a tendency to sweat. Look for glasses frames with Thermogrip, which is a hydrophilic (absorbent) material that keeps the frame in place while sweating.


Other considerations for outdoor activities include oleophobic and hydrophobic treatment for lenses, which prevent dirt and grease from sticking to the lenses.


The look Sunglasses for men and women come in all different shapes and sizes – while it’s always advisable to try on your frames in a sunglasses shop, you can speed up the process by eliminating options that will not suit you.

Skin tones


Your individual skin tone may influence the colour of your frames, particularly in eye glasses. While some of us experience changes to our skin tone over the summer, there is always room for a reliable pair of frames which suit your natural hue.

Very fair skin pairs well with grey and silver tones, matching with the natural blue veins under your skin. Dark blue or green is a bolder alternative, but avoid brighter shades, white or beige.

Slightly warmer tones welcome greens and yellows, so go for copper, bronze and gold frames. Red and khaki also work well for standout specs. Avoid colours too close to your skin tone, such as pastels. For darker skin, try red and brown hues by day, or turn it up a notch with bright bold shades in the evening.

Face shape

Women’s sunglasses styles vary considerably more than men, so it’s important to choose a style that flatters the face. If your face is heart-shaped, try a cat’s eye style, large or small, but make sure it is not wider than your cheeks.

Aviators flatter both men and women, but they are best suited to square face shapes. If your face is longer, try square sunglasses to add width. A Wayfarer Ray-Ban style will flatter rounder faces, and if you have an oval shape, then you can try just about anything.

Above all, when choosing your new glasses for summer, remember to be safe. Consider the dangers of ball sports or water sports, and remember to protect your eyes as well as skin from harmful UVA and UVB rays. For more information on choosing the perfect pair of summer glasses, contact us today.

You may also be interested in taking a look at our other blog about how Hay Fever can affect your eyes!