Changing Customer Needs and Demands in the Eyewear Industry

The eyewear industry has been drastically growing due to society’s incessant dependency on electronics. Consumers’ eyes are glued to either their desktop, smartphone or TV screens and it doesn’t seem like it’s going to get any better anytime soon. With Generation Z growing up having only lived in a world where they could chat with their friends via an iPad screen, people are consequentially purchasing more eyewear products due to reduced vision. Thankfully, photochromic glasses that block blue light do exist in this bustling industry as a means to tackle this everlasting issue.

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Eye strain is one of the most common symptoms of blue lights’ effects on the eyes. The technology that consumers use on a daily basis have a harmful blue light that can lead to dry eyes and eye strain. The human eye is sensitive to a very minute light frequency that is also referred to as the visible light spectrum. As a result of having the shortest wavelength visible to humans, blue light is also composed of the greatest amount of energy. At such a powerful energy level, the eye has difficulty blocking the blue light from reaching past its cornea and lens all the way through its retina. The more a person is exposed to this harsh blue light, the more they will reap the results of poorer vision. Children, who make up the majority of Generation Z, are more susceptible to the compounding effects of blue light since their crystalline lens reacts heavily to short light wavelengths.

It is imperative to understand the extent of the health problems that may persist with prolonged exposure to blue light, and how the eyewear industry’s blue light blocking innovations can allow consumers of all walks of life to stay safe.

Age-related macular degeneration (AMD) is one of the most severe effects that can come from the onset of repeated blue light exposure. This essentially means that people who consume technology for multiple hours a day over the years may experience permanent vision loss. The main effects of continuous blue light exposure are due to the damaging effects that occur to the eyes cones, which house sensitive cells responsible for light and color vision, and the retinal pigment epithelium, the home to cell-replenishing molecules.

Cataracts are another potential threat, although perhaps not the most surprising one. Cataracts are when vision begins to seem blurry or foggy as a result of the eye’s clear lens fogging up over the years. Blue light is said to perhaps speed up this process that is often experienced in aging folks.

Sleep issues are evidently a result of too much technological exposure prior to bedtime. While blue light stimulates the brain by mimicking the sun’s wavelengths, a cognitive stimulant for wakefulness, memory and alertness are boosted and may result in a disrupted sleep cycle.

How can consumers stay safe by protecting themselves from adverse effects as a result of blue light exposure in a world where it is impossible to remain offline? Purchasing affordable or nicely branded photochromic glasses that block blue light seem to be the popular answer. With the rise in North American disposable income and the need for eyeglasses spiking high, consumers prefer to purchase new glasses to replace their old ones. In terms of eyewear demand, a great shift has been made upwards towards luxury and branded eyewear.

While consumers are quick to buy $500 pairs of Dior eyeglasses, they’ll find that they will need to change prescriptions more often due to the reduced vision thanks to blue light exposure. Also, keeping up with the ever-changing trends eyeglass frame sizes, shapes and styles, swapping between designer specs comes with an exorbitant price tag. The new innovations for affordable and accessible specs that target the blue light phenomenon is taking over the industry with photochromic glasses that block blue light. The renewal of prescription glasses in the low cost and disposable lenses segment is estimated to skyrocket in the next couple of years.