Obviously, rocking a sporty pair of shades is a surefire way to enhance every look. Wearing sunglasses aren’t just the chic accessory to wear though; they’re the smart accessory. What many don’t know is that sunglasses serve a purpose year-round and are major contributors to preserving our eye health. That’s right. Keep out your favorite pairs of shades for the winter; you’ll need them. Below we’ve listed the primary reasons you should always bring a pair of sunglasses with you and why wearing sunglasses is the health trend of every fashion season.

Winter

Winter proposes various reasons for wearing sunglasses. During the chilly season, UV rays from the sun can be more harsh because they’re also reflecting off the snow, causing further damage. The American Academy of Ophthalmology explains that because the UV rays are intensified, they can cause sunburn of the eyes, often referred to as snow blindness, and continued exposure can lead to cataracts, lesions and tumors. Because of this, it’s important that eyewear with UV protection is used whether you’re skiing in the clouds or driving in the sun.

Spring

Two words: allergy season. We’re finally done hibernating and ready to #getoutthere when suddenly, our eyes can’t stop itching and watering. The Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America listed wearing sunglasses as one of the top ways to prevent allergy symptoms due to pollen. According to a study in Men’s Health, wearing sunglasses reduces UV and pollen exposure, both of which can exacerbate allergy symptoms. The explanation is that more eye exposure to air increases the risk of irritants. Looking cool suddenly sounds like a small price to pay in lieu of all the eye-watering nonsense.

 

Summer

In addition to fashion, sunglasses provide function by protecting our eyes from harmful UVA and UVB radiation from the sun. The summer season is the season with the most amount of daylight. This multiplies the reasons for wearing protective sunglasses while out and about. Sunglasses with UV protection protect you especially from harmful UV-B rays, which are known to cause the most damage to the front part of the eye. Sunglasses can also protect you from eyelid cancer and other eye-related damage about 90% of the time. People with lighter colored eyes should be more careful during this season because they have less protective pigment to prevent eye damage. Finally, sunglasses come in handy on one of the biggest summer celebrations of the year, Independence Day. While going to a firework show is always most popular, people handling fireworks should be sure to use protective eyewear to prevent their eyes from damaging light.

 

Fall

Nope. Leave them on. The sun is the highest in the sky during the summer, and during the fall, the sun lowers to our direct line of sight. Instead of the sun being overhead, sunlight pours directly in our eyes, creating a blinding situation. Wearing sunglasses also helps protect our eyes from the growing number of gnats and autumn bugs that come out to play. Finally, wearing sunglasses helps protect the eyes from increased gusts of wind in the fall that can dry out the eye and decrease our visibility.

 

As you can see, sunglasses are more than a seasonal fashion statement. They’re a year-round wardrobe staple that provides protection and promotes your eye health. Regardless of whether you #getouthere simply during a car ride to work or for a hike through the mountains, be sure to wear your sunnies so you can continue seeing new sights in great health.