Polycarbonate is an inexpensive plastic material used to manufacture a variety of consumer goods. In the 1980s, polycarbonate lenses were introduced as a safer alternative to traditional plastic and glass eyeglass lenses. These lenses are thinner, lighter, and more impact-resistant than regular lenses, making them a popular choice for everyone from athletes to people working in dangerous job environments.
What are polycarbonate lenses?
Polycarbonate lenses are a type of specialty plastic lens that can be used in eyeglasses, sunglasses, and sports glasses. The lenses are thin, light, and impact resistant. They provide 100 percent UV protection and are far less likely to fracture than traditional eyewear lenses. When it comes to safety, polycarbonate lenses are the gold standard in eyewear.
Why are polycarbonate lenses used?
Polycarbonate lenses are considered safer than traditional lens materials because they are less brittle and will not shatter upon impact. This makes them ideal for anyone who participates in athletic activities, enjoys active hobbies, or works in a job environment where eye safety is a concern. Optometrists often recommend polycarbonate lenses for children who are accident-prone.
Benefits of polycarbonate lenses
Here are just a few of the benefits of polycarbonate lenses:
- They are thinner and more attractive than traditional lenses.
- They will not crack or shatter upon impact.
- They are lighter than standard lenses (meaning glasses will not constantly slide down the nose).
- High impact resistance.
- 100 percent UV protection.
- They can be customized with prescriptions.
- They will protect eyes from flying objects and debris.
- They are ideal for rimless eyewear designs.
Problems associated with polycarbonate lenses
Polycarbonate lenses are much softer than traditional lenses and they tend to scratch easily. The good news is that scratch-resistant coatings can be added to polycarbonate lenses to improve their durability.
If you are looking for a safer alternative to your glasses, speak with your optometrist about polycarbonate lenses and how they may help you.