Photochromic lenses

I started wearing glasses when I was about 49 years old. At that point I had a combination of age-related vision loss (more severe in my left eye) and astigmatism, so I needed prescription reading glasses for close work, and a pair of progressive glasses for daily wear. At a pinch I used to be able to use off-the-shelf reading glasses, but they were not adjusted for my weaker left eye or my astigmatism and I could not use them for long periods.

For some reason I also used off-the-shelf non-prescription sunglasses, which made it a pain when driving in bright sunlight or when I needed to read something on a sunny day. I had to always remember to have my sunglasses with me. Five years ago I switched to photochromic lenses (lenses that automatically darken and lighten according to light and darkness conditions), and have never looked back.

The ONLY down side to photochromic lenses is that when you walk inside after walking in bright sunshine, you cannot see much for the few minutes it takes for the lenses to lighten. But the rest of the time it is a joy. No carrying a separate pair of sunglasses, or forgetting them on a sunny day. No struggling to read a menu when eating outside.

My optometrist has two different special offers – a pair of glasses with a free pair of prescription sunglasses, or a pair of glasses with a free pair of prescription reading glasses. I take the prescription glasses with photochromic lenses and the free prescription reading glasses every time.

If you have not tried this type of lenses, I would highly recommend them.


Author: Janet Carr

Fashion, beauty and animal loving language consultant from South Africa living in Stockholm, Sweden.

3 thoughts

  1. It was a very interesting read. I have had some photochromic glasses in the past but I have never really been that impressed. I live in Northern Germany and there’s hardly any sun out in winter but the glasses still get dark, which can be annoying when the outside is already dark and it takes WAYYYY too long to get clear once you enter a shop. I always feel like a celebrity who doesn’t want to be recognized indoors, so she keeps her sunglasses on. The one major problem I can see (ha!) is that when you are driving, especially long distances and have to go under tunnels, it is simply too dangerous because it’s pitch black despite the orange tunnel lights… If they went back to their clear state within a few seconds, I wouldn’t be too bothered and I would probably always get a pair. I’m glad they work well for you. They do look really lovely on you too!

      1. I think that if they didn’t go as dark and they had a lighter hue, that wouldn’t bother me so much but it might defeat the purpose eventually! And I love that expression: ” to swan into a room”! 😀

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