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What are photochromic lenses and are they any good?

I am Harsh, a laboratory technician and eyewear expert with more than 23 years of experience in the eyeglasses industry.

Photochromic lenses: The best of both worlds!


Transition lenses are very helpful in protecting your eyes from 100% UV rays and this process happens automatically when we move outdoors from indoors. The lenses of these glasses react to UV rays and change colour. So, if you’re looking out for a pair that works as both prescription glasses and sunglasses, then you’ve found a winner.

Curious to know how this happens and everything else about these magical lenses? We will talk in detail about every small thing about these glasses and will clear all your doubts. Continue reading with us and get the right information.

What are transition lenses?

Transitions are also known as variable tint lenses, and are designed to react to ultraviolet rays. These lenses darken in sunlight and remain clear otherwise. Photochromic lenses assume a tint when outdoors to protect your eyes from UV harm.

These lenses will rarely change their colour indoors for eg: when your room is fully brightened up with sunlight. With 100% protection from UV rays, these glasses also make sure that you stay healthy and safe the whole time. These glasses are not only useful for day to day activities but can be used for sports activities too.

How do transitions work?

Reaction glasses have some molecules present in them, the silver chloride and silver halide molecules are responsible for the change in colour of these lenses. When these lenses are exposed to UV rays, millions of photochromic molecules start changing their structures. Once this process is done the surface of the lens turns dark automatically.

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The final result is the pair of prescription glasses that turn into transition sunglasses and go back and forth depending on the presence of UV light. This will keep your eyes safe from harmful UV rays. You can buy transitions from any reputed online store that provides good quality glasses.

Who needs transitions?

Some people who are light-sensitive or who move between indoors and outdoors frequently are the ones who benefit the most from these lenses. Well, photochromic lenses can be used by almost everyone as everyone needs to keep their eyes safe and protected from UV rays.

The need for transitions is completely preference-based, some people prefer the ease of transitioning while others are happy with their normal sunglasses. It’s completely up to you but it will be better to use reaction lenses to grab the most of it.

The pros of using photochromic lenses

Let us now see how these lenses are helpful for us:

  • Transition lenses are cost-effective, if you are an owner of transition lenses then you won’t have to buy two pairs of glasses for different purposes i.e prescription glasses and sunglasses. You get the best-combined solution for both of them.

Buy reactor light glasses online and save money.

  • Photochromic lenses have an anti-reflective coating which helps your eyes to see comfortably on reflective surfaces such as snow or road signs. This will avoid accidents and will keep you and your eyes safe.
  • These lenses are available in different styles, shapes and colours which will make you look cool and interesting. Such a good example of protection with style.
  • The biggest advantage of these glasses is that you get an inbuilt filter for both UV rays and blue light.

The drawbacks of using photochromic lenses

We have seen the advantages of transitions but everything has a negative side too. Let us see what the cons of transition lenses are.

  • One of the main drawbacks of reaction lenses is that they fade away faster than they darken. It will take approximately 20-30 seconds to clear, depending on the design and the brand. Whenever buying cheap glasses make sure the quality and the brand is up to the mark.
  • Temperature plays a vital role in the performance of transitions. This means there will be some problems in cold weather as it will take a little longer than usual to react to the UV rays. In addition, these lenses get darker at lower temperatures and their fading speed decreases in cold conditions.
  • Photochromic lenses can be a big disadvantage while driving. Since the modern car windscreens block the UV rays needed for the lens to react. In addition, you should not wear tinted lenses at night for self-safety.

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