Okay, so you have to sing the second part of that really fast to make it fit that old “I can see clearly now, the rain is gone” song, but work with me here! It was the first thing that came to mind when I was thinking about how best to describe Phonetic Eyewear, the company that sent me a pair of computer glasses to try out and helped me ditch the digital eye strain finally. Let’s talk a bit about what causes that eyestrain and how Phonetic Eyewear helped me. Then I’ll give you a chance to win a pair for yourself. Sound good?
What is Digital Eye Strain?
Back in 2013, I attended an online briefing with The Vision Council about digital eye strain. I learned that the term is used to describe the discomfort that we feel after staring at a screen all day, be it a tiny phone or a large PC monitor. As a society, we’re spending more and more time looking at screens. Even more than back in 2013, I bet.
For me, by the end of a day working, digital eye strain feels like someone went bowling with my eyeballs, using spiked pins. I am prone to headaches to begin with, so I often end up with a combo eye strain/migraine deal. Let me tell you, that’s super fun! I’m using my sarcastic voice there, in case you couldn’t tell.
I also find that staring at my iPad instantly makes me drowsy. All I want to do is sit down and read a good book at the end of a long day. I settle in with my tasty hot beverage, my cozy blanket and Alex the Fuzz purring away on my lap. Sounds sleep-inducing, but I’m not even remotely tired. Then I start reading and within minutes my eyes are drooping shut. It only happens when I read on a digital screen, not with traditional ink-and-paper books.
Could technology really be hurting our eyes? Scientists are still debating. When it comes to the medical community, we know it takes years and years of research before anyone will come right out and say “yep, turns out dropping an anvil on your head really CAN cause headaches!” My own experience tells me that digital eye strain is a very real thing.
How Can You Prevent Digital Eye Strain?
There are a few things you can do to prevent digital eye strain. Some are things you have to train yourself to do, like:
- Following the 20/20/20 rule: every 20 minutes, look at something 20 feet away for 20 seconds. This helps your eyes focus on far-off objects as well as those right in front of your face.
- Take frequent breaks throughout the day, and NOT to play games on your phone! Give your eyes a complete break from screens. I fold laundry, play with my cats and dogs, anything that doesn’t allow me to look at a screen.
- Routinely clean your screens, especially the touch screens that are filled with your fingerprints. You don’t realize how smudgy things are until you turn them off (or take a picture of them!). Those smudges can contribute to digital eye strain.
- Sit back a good 20-24 inches from your screen. I’m guilty of resting my hands on my face with my eyes less than a foot away from my screen.
There’s one thing you can do that doesn’t require any extra effort: get a good pair of computer glasses. This is where Phonetic Computer Eyewear comes in.
See Clearly with Phonetic Eyewear
makes stylish lenses with a special coating the deflects blue light, the violet-blue part of the electromagnetic spectrum that’s responsible for that glare coming off your screens. Unlike many types of computer glasses on the market, they do this without a weird yellow tint, so you can look absolutely stylish while preventing digital eye strain.
I’m not going to pretend that I understand any of the science behind blue light or the special coating. I suggest checking out Phonetic’s FAQs for more information on that. They’re very clear that they don’t make any medical claims about their glasses or the dangers of blue light, the simply built a better and far more stylish way to block said light.
This is what I do know: they work REALLY well for me. I noticed an instant improvement in the way my computer screen looked when I put them on. It was clearer, more vibrant. Remember back in the old days, when you’d hit that degauss button on your monitor and it was the like the coolest thing ever, and all of the sudden that old clunker was clear as day? Well, these are kind of like that. The whites are whiter, the images sharper. Yet the rest of the colors remain true to what they were before.
I can actually work a full day without rubbing my eyes every hour or feeling like they’re going to fall out of my head. While I still get other types of headaches, I haven’t had a single eyestrain headache since I put my Phonetics on. In fact, my eyes haven’t hurt at all. I even read an entire book in one sitting last night without getting drowsy! I plan to read another one tonight. Maybe I’ll actually make it through my TBR pile this year.
The only thing I can say about them that isn’t glowing: they do smudge a bit easier than non-computer reading glasses. However, I did some research and found that this is pretty typical of all computer glasses. From what I’ve read, I think these actually smudge less often than many other brands. The whole smudge-factor has to do with the coating on the lens. Phonetic includes a magical microfiber cloth that works better than any other microfiber cloth on the planet. I actually emailed and asked what sort of sorcery created it, and they told me they just use the very best microfiber cloth they could find. Bonus, it’s machine washable, so it’ll last a long time.
Phonetic Eyewear glasses come in tons fashionable styles and colors, including frames for men, women and gender-neutral fashions. You can get them with most prescriptions, as reading glasses or with no power at all. I wear the Purple Tortoise Harper, which are super cute and super comfy. Each pair comes with the mystical microfiber cloth as well as a nice plush carrying case to keep them safe. Phonetic Eyewear starts at $49 for no-power or reading glasses and $89 for prescription glasses.
Head over to Phonetic to check out their selections and learn more. Check them out on Facebook and Twitter to keep up with news. Take a look at their Instagram and Pinterest pages for style inspiration!