Blueblocker glasses protect your eyes from artificial blue light
A summary of what you need to know about Blueblocker glasses
We speak of blue light at a wavelength of approx. 380 to 495 nanometres (nm). It is short-wave and very energy-rich light. It occurs in the natural spectrum of sunlight and is present when daylight is available. Natural light regulates our sleep-wake rhythm via our eyes and is thus indirectly involved in the regulation of the sleep hormone melatonin. Blue light is therefore not bad per se, but on the contrary: it is vital. We need it so that our body can be awake and active. One of the positive effects of blue light is that it lifts our mood and can increase our sense of well-being. It also improves our ability to concentrate and our memory.
High concentrations of artificial blue light are problematic
Blue light becomes problematic when you are permanently exposed to it artificially by working for hours on a computer screen or constantly looking at your smartphone instead of being outside in nature. Other light sources such as LEDs, energy-saving lamps or the flat-screen TV at home also emit blue light. The constant intake of artificial light is not without consequences for the human body, as it affects various parts of the body - from the eyes to sleep. But more about this in the following paragraph.
What are the risks and disadvantages associated with blue light?
There are numerous risks and disadvantages associated with artificial blue light and excessive exposure. This section describes the problems that too much consumption of blue light can cause us.
Problem number 1: Disturbance of the natural sleep-wake rhythm
As described above, blue light has an activating effect on the human body and wakes us up. In the morning, this can be beneficial for getting going. In the evening, however, it is a hindrance because it slows down the production of the sleep hormone melatonin, which naturally makes us tired. This means that blue light really upsets the human bio-rhythm. The consequences are problems falling asleep, sleep disorders and insomnia. Over a long period of time, this leads to hormonal problems, metabolic disorders and lower resistance.
Problem number 2: Eye fatigue
As already mentioned, blue light is a very high-energy light. As a result, your eyes tire more quickly and you may also experience headaches. This is partly because the photoreceptors of the retina contain the photopigment melanopsin and react very sensitively to light from the blue spectrum.
Ophthalmologists know the problem. More and more people who are permanently sitting at a computer screen come to the practices because they have problems with their eyes. They report not only tired eyes, but also general problems with vision or that their eyes increasingly feel dry and irritated and they have difficulty recovering.
Problem number 3: Headaches as a result of tired eyes
If you constantly overload your eyes and don't give them a break, you risk getting headaches as a result. If the eyes can no longer recover and are constantly overstimulated, this does not leave the head cold either and it reacts with pain, signalling that it urgently needs a break.
Problem number 4: Severe eye diseases up to blindness
Excessive exposure to blue light can lead to serious eye diseases in addition to the comparatively mild eye problems mentioned above. These include age-related macular degeneration (AMD) and cataracts. Age-related macular degeneration (AMD) occurs mainly in people over 70 years of age. It is an irreversible damage of the retina. In western industrialised countries, AMD is the most common cause of blindness. Constant contact with blue light can unfortunately accelerate the process that leads to macular degeneration. Permanent consumption of blue light is also involved in the development of cataracts, which can also lead to blindness.
But what can be done to counteract blue light? It is hardly possible to reduce the time spent in front of a screen if you have to do with it at work. And limiting time on the smartphone or tablet is a good idea, but hardly feasible in reality. Modern devices have a blue light filter. Another option is to wear a Blueblocker glasses. By this we mean not the transparent blue filter glasses with a special coating that only filter a small part of the blue spectrum, but the dark yellow or orange glasses that block 100% of the blue light.
What glasses are available to filter or block blue light?
There are now various lenses that block or filter blue light:
- Blueblocker glasses with orange lenses (our 550 models)
- Blueblocker glasses with yellow lenses (our 500 models)
- Blue filter glasses (transparent glasses)
We explain to you what the differences are and which glasses make sense when.
Blueblocker Glasses with Orange or Amber Lenses
These are the glasses with the darkest tint and thus the glasses have the strongest effect against blue light. These glasses block 100% of blue light and also partially block green light, which also affects the production of melatonin and thus the sleep-wake rhythm. Orange glasses have a calming effect on the whole body, making them ideal for wearing in the evening or at night. Wearing them can lift your mood, make you tired and significantly improve the quality of your sleep.
Blueblocker Glasses with Yellow Lenses
Yellow lenses also block 100% of short-wave blue light and are thus a real relief for the eyes. Unlike orange lenses, they do not block green light.
Blueblocker glasses with yellow lenses are the ideal glasses for working at a computer screen. They filter out much of the harmful light emitted by the screen, but let enough of it through so you can still distinguish colours and stay as focused as possible.
Blue filter glasses with clear lenses and a coating
These lenses are advertised as "blue light filtering". The lenses are provided with a coating that is supposed to offer a certain protection against blue light. However, data show that this coating can only filter a small percentage of blue light.
The point here is to look closely: While blueblocker glasses really block blue light and don't let it through to the eye, bluefilter glasses actually filter only part of the blue light and most of the light still reaches the eyes.
What are the advantages of blue light goggles?
The dark yellow or orange glass absorbs a large part of the blue light and does not allow it to reach the retina in the first place. This means that it cannot have any negative effects in the eye or in the body.
- Advantage number 1: Blueblocker glasses are simple and effective if you no longer want to let blue light from artificial light sources reach your eyes in the evening.
- Advantage number 2: Wearing blue light glasses protects your sleep-wake rhythm and prevents problems falling asleep or insomnia. Especially if you have to work late in the evening, you should wear blue blocker glasses to prevent blue light from reaching your eyes.
- Benefit number 3: Blue light goggles help eyes feel less tired and also less dry or irritated.
- Benefit number 4: Your Blueblocker glasses can be a real help in reducing headaches. Often, digital eye strain cannot be reduced because your job requires you to work at a computer screen. With Blueblocker glasses, you're doing something good for your health and preventing headaches.
What else can you do to protect your eyes?
The less time you spend in front of different screens, the better. When you sit in front of the screen in the evening, it is important to turn on a second light source. When it is very dark, your pupils dilate and more light hits your retina. If the room is brighter, your pupils will shrink again.
Our conclusion on Blueblocker glasses
It is no longer possible to imagine our world without artificial blue light. Whether laptop, smartphone, tablet or LED lighting - we are confronted with blue light everywhere and it is hardly realistic to believe that the use of these devices will decrease in the future. On the contrary! However, to give your eyes some relief and not disturb your sleep-wake rhythm in the long term, we recommend wearing Blueblocker glasses in the evening. Glasses with a blue filter coating are not effective and cannot replace real blue blocker glasses. Nevertheless, they are useful for screen work during the day, as the massive "blue peak" is reduced.
Further literature on the topic:
- Behar-Cohen F, Martinsons C, Viénot F, Zissis G, Barlier-Salsi A, Cesarini JP, Enouf O, Garcia M, Picaud S, Attia D. Light-emitting diodes (LED) for domestic lighting: any risks for the eye? Prog Retin Eye Res. 2011 Jul;30(4):239-57. doi: 10.1016/j.preteyeres.2011.04.002. Epub 2011 May 14. PMID: 21600300.
- Berson DM, Dunn FA, Takao M. Phototransduction by Retinal Ganglion Cells That Set the Circadian Clock. Science 2002; 295: 1070-1073.
- O'Hagan JB, Khazova M, Price LL. Low-energy light bulbs, computers, tablets and the blue light hazard. Eye (Lond). 2016 Feb;30(2):230-3. doi: 10.1038/eye.2015.261. epub 2016 Jan 15. PMID: 26768920; PMCID: PMC4763136.
- Renard G, Leid J. Les dangers de la lumière bleue : la vérité ! [The dangers of blue light: True story!] J Fr Ophtalmol. 2016 May;39(5):483-8. French. doi: 10.1016/j.jfo.2016.02.003. epub 2016 Mar 31. PMID: 27039979.
- Blue light has a dark side, health.harvard.edu
Dear Blueblocker team, I have been wearing your beautiful glasses since day one. Now I have some questions if I have understood correctly. I would like to ask you, so when I work in the evening on the PC, I wear the yellow glasses. When I am on the cell phone in the evening, I should also wear yellow glasses? And if I want to read a book in the evening, should I wear yellow or orange glasses? And otherwise just when I am not on the PC and not on the cell phone in the evening, I should wear the orange glasses? If I go outside in the evening e.g. now to a Christmas market then I should wear yellow glasses, right? During the day when I work on the PC then I wear the computer glasses (brand INVU)-are they good, is that enough please? Thank you for your answer and advice. Kind regards Jana Schumacher
Hi Jana, sorry for the late reply. Basically you can use both glasses by feel. From experience, many customers wear the lighter version when reading or when they are on the road. You should wear the glasses best after sunset or 2-3 hours before going to bed. During the day, you should get as much natural light as possible. To avoid blue light filter glasses during the day, we recommend using software filters like f.lux or iris.co. They turn down the color settings of your monitor and counteract the high blue content. The dark version (550) still blocks a large part of the green spectrum and is therefore very difficult for some people to get used to. But you get tired even faster. That's why some people call this variant knock out glasses. But both glasses do their job and block 100% blue light! So in your case, I would wear the light one for most things. If you want to get down really fast, go for the dark one. Best regards, Nils from Lichtblock